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Old 01-04-2016, 04:54 PM   #1
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Default Some stupid questions that aren't stupid to me, newbie

Hi there, my name is Lauren and I am 23, my partner 27 and we are both interested in taking up sailing. My father was a sailor, but he's a completely impossible person to deal with, however his tales of adventures have been inspiring throughout my childhood. I also love water.

So I recently completed a trip around AUS in my car over a series of months and endeavour to do the same trip again in 2017, during this time I hope to gain some experience in sailing, with random people along the coast. I mention this because I think it's important to point out that I have actually thoroughly enjoyed the backpacker lifestyle, no shower for weeks and everything small and having to be stowed away each day and night. I can't think of anything outside a boat which can otherwise resemble the lifestyle so closely and to be frank, it was the best experience of my life, so I am extremely confident my determination to achieve this will not falter (incase someone wants to say im crazy or stupid)

My ultimate aim is to obtain a live aboard, mono or multi, and travel for as long as I can manage within reason.

I have ZERO sailing experience myself, but also am not completely stupid and will seek help, practice etc. But I would like to start researching my boat options so when the time comes I have some idea of what boat I would like so I can keep an eye on the market.

It will be for two people. So doesn't need to have heaps or bedrooms etc. I also would be able to consider doing a fit out myself as I am quite handy and enjoy filling in my spare time, based on my current readings it's also a good way to get to know my boat.

I also will be interested in lessons and advice as much as possible along the way.

Anyway anyone with any input please feel free to shoot some messages my way. Thanks in advance!
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Old 01-04-2016, 06:42 PM   #2
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Hi Lauren. It's great to hear from enthusiastic newbies who are keen to embrace the cruising lifestyle. Obviously finances are a restricting factor for most people wanting to buy a boat. The first thing I would say is buy the best boat you possibly can, for CASH. Borrowing money, then having to find more to start fixing, is a self defeating process.

Most boats made in the past 40 years have dunnies and showers, (and refrigeration, hot pressure water etc) so there is no excuse for being stinky. Bigger boats cost bigger bucks both to purchase and maintain. For two people wanting to cruise I suggest something about 36', with a full keel and centre cockpit as being an ideal size and configuration for extended cruising. I had a South Coast 36 (Oz made in 1982) and sometimes wish I hadn't gone bigger. There are many good mediums but GRP is perhaps the best for people who want to go sailing soon and on a budget.

As far as fitting out is concerned. It presents challenges as does any re-modelling project which doesn't feature 90° angles. The biggest impediment to DIY is the belief that it's just a floating apartment. Materials from specialist marine glues, nails, screws and wire, to timbers; and to the physics of design engineering to cope with the stresses placed on an offshore boat are essential inclusions. The knowledge of how to use them is not difficult to learn, but learning is essential.

Now to the good news. Sailing was developed by Cromagnon man. He was not a terribly sophisticated bloke...consequently, sailing is a very easy, largely intuitive thing to do.

So, get yourself down to the water and meet a few sailors at the local boat clubs. Take a few courses in navigation, and sailing (most sailing clubs offer these at fairly low cost) and look for a little sailing/racing activity during the weekends. Avoid skippers who think every Saturday race is The America's Cup, for they will shout like idiots and generally make a bloody nuisance of themselves and will, in all probability, have you thinking a VW bus might be a better bet.

Start looking for a boat. Consider not just the cost of buying and fixing, but also the cost of keeping it either on the hardstand or at a marina. Don't trust your instinct when looking to buy. Falling in love with a boat before you have had it assessed by someone who is qualified to make the assessment, is dangerous.

Above all, please keep us aware of what you are doing, even if it is on an occasional basis. There is a lot of experience here on Cruiser Log. Here you will meet people who have made all the mistakes it is possible to make (and who will want to help prevent you from making the same blunders), people who sail, who want to sail, who have bought junk and have successfully turned that junk into a decent boat....all have good stories to tell which can save you thousands.

Have a look here: http://www.amazon.com/Larry-Pardey/e/B000APR32I
Lyn and Larry Pardey are lifetime cruisers and adventurers who do it on a budget. In particular, I recommend a book called The Cost Conscious Cruiser.

Welcome and stay in touch.
Cheers.
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Old 01-04-2016, 08:14 PM   #3
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Default I forgot to mention

I should also add my bf is living primarily in Germany, this may change, and myself in Australia, also may change.. So any idea on seas we could begin with based on these locations and spend a couple years on getting to know chosen boat would be helpful too. We are aiming to write plans and ideas and research in all our spare time... I have already made extensive reading on forums such as this and professional articles and blogs... This is just skimming the surface of course!


Money at the moment our aim is to save $120000 in 3 years, this includes selling our basic existing assets. We both stay at home with parents who support our crazy adventures so it is possible to save more. We also plan to get our dive masters so we can maybe find work along the way and I will be a qualified teacher.


We both also endeavour to crew other people's boats before purchase if possible and perhaps gain work experience at a repair yard to learn.
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Old 01-04-2016, 08:16 PM   #4
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Default Sorry my phone froze!

So thank you for this very fast initial reply, Andy and myself both appreciate every piece of advice we can get and the time taken for people to give it. So thank you
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Old 01-05-2016, 12:06 PM   #5
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Everybody was a newbie at one time or another. You are young and full of energy and want to jump right in. If I could offer any advice, it would be to slow down a bit and concentrate on getting sailing experience. Don't buy a boat, especially a fixer upper until you are more knowledgeable.

You could end up with a non-sea worthy money pit that doesn't sail well and will eat up your time and keep you off the water. I have some advice for beginners on my blog. Sailing is not difficult, but if you take the time to learn, you will have many years of great experiences. I didn't learn to sail until age 35 and turned 67 last month between Bermuda and St Thomas.

Good luck to you.

…Get Experience? | This Old Sailor
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