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Old 02-09-2007, 06:41 AM   #1
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Default New Couple - Crusier Wanna Be's

Ahoy Mates!

Permission to Come Aboard?

Please allow me to introduce myself, before I start firing my barrage of endless questions.

Hi this is Jeff, my significant other is Candee. We grew up in different parts of North Dakota, and are the same age. We met on the internet in 2004, and finally met in person a year and a half later. Shortly after, I moved to her area near Denver Colorado.

We are new to sailing, but have a strong desire to learn everything. Almost a year ago, on a day long road trip, we were discussing retirement goals. She wants to travel. I have a fifth wheel R.V. (Recreational Vehicle) and have lived on the road for months at a time in it. (I think I have a feel for the space on a personal yacht.) I had considered the RV life style in retirement. I ask her if she ever had thought of sailing the world. She said, "No. I never thought about it. I don't know how. I never had anybody to do it with." The more we discussed it the more we liked the idea. She told me I had 10 years to prepare {because of employment} Months later, and after significant discussion it is "our goal".

Giving the matter consideration, I thought 10 years sounded reasonable, and adequate. While I read, study, and think about it, she has gotten more frustrated with her ďgood jobĒ. I am thinking on reducing the prep time significantly.

Currently I am studying for my Amateur Radio License (HAM). We have plans for PADI Scuba certification, American Red Cross First Aid Certification and Sailing Certifications, likely an American Sailing Association (ASA) approved course, unless we learn of a better way.

I am considering re-studying for my Private Pilotís license, if we remain land locked long enough. Back in my college days I was the final written test away from that. Why would I want to do that? Because of the similarities. The aerodynamics of a wing and a sail are similar. An aircraft pilot masters communication, navigation, (maps/charts), meteorology, the craft systems, rules of the road - right-of-way, laws, and the like.

The following may sound like my resume. Bear with me. This is so you know where I am coming from.

I am a retired Army National Guard Officer, Combat Engineer, US Army Corps of Engineers. I mastered float bridging, which includes anchorage systems. I taught Rigging and Knots to Officer Candidates. Knowing various communication equipment and systems is a prerequisite of all military officers. I excelled in map reading, and land navigation (top of my class). Before I became an officer, as an enlisted person I was an Army Trained Welder. In civilian life I was a trained mechanic, later and more so a machinist. On the job I worked a career in machine shops for electric equipment companies. Combined I have an education, experience, and on-the-job training as a welder, mechanic (including hydraulics), machinist, electrician, carpentry, and more. I have significant computer knowledge, I think adequate. As a machinist I was taught to program them. Twenty-nine years of various computer experience. I have a Commercial Drivers License, (CDL) air brakes, tankers, 3 trailers in tow. I can drive big rigs, heavy junk, long stuff, liquids sloshing around trying to steer me, on ice, in the snow and wind. I did a lot in my life, jumped out of helicopters, lived outdoors in freezing snow banks for weeks at a time, went white water rafting, scuba dived, water skied, snow skied, blew up stuff with explosives, climbed up vertical slippery rock walls, hunted, fished, prepared and ate it.

Enough about my acquired skills. I posted that so you know something about me. I am not applying for a job. Some skills are rusty, some parts forgotten. Re-studying, boning up is fun, and easy.

I lack electronic circuit knowledge. That could be helpful to know.

My sailing knowledge is nil, inadequate. Iíve never been at sea, out of the site of land; much less in charge of that situation.

I have never owned a boat; yet. I'm not even sure how to determine what we want. From reading, it seems like everything is a trade off. E.g. space vs. cost (to purchase, maintain, and berth); comfort vs. speed, stability vs. draft, and so on. From what I know so far, it is a matter of finding an acceptable compromise, and adapting to it.

I know nothing about the stars, for reliable navigation. My plan is to use GPS, but know and practice navigation via non-electronic methods in case the hi-tech systems fail.

My plan is to have redundant systems, two to four levels deep.

E.g. Floatation: the yacht sinks, use the hard dingy, it sinks, inflate the rubber one, it sinks, resort to the life vest.

~ ~ ~

I've been reading this excellent board for a while now. It was what I was looking for, sailors and cruisers with knowledge and experience. I read most of the posts back to page 8; I have about 20 to go.

Fairly recently, the media, (and this board) reported the Ken Barnes Solo Circum-Navigation Incident. Who am I to be critical of his dream? I am glad he is safe. I am sorry to hear that he lost his boat, and a lot of hard earned effort. My perception is he was pushing the limits, taking risks to accomplish something. Maybe he put himself in a position he should not have been in. He did not achieve his goal yet, lost his vessel and investment in the process. His dream is his. Ours is different, though similar.

I have a lot of questions. I am looking for good advice and sound judgment. Now that you know something about me, I feel more at ease asking your advice, and to share your experiences. And maybe you will be more willing to do so.



When in doubt, do the right thing.

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Old 02-09-2007, 10:53 AM   #2
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Hi. Welcome.

One really nice thing about this forum is that we are so scattered around the globe that my nighttime is another's daytime, and vice versa.

We are quite willing to share our experiences, and our knowledge. Since you're reading the posts I don't have to introduce myself, and a few before you have asked lots of questions that gives you a platform from which to launch.

Just remember, there aren't any dumb questions. Another thing to keep in mind is that most of us started out not even knowing what we didn't know. And I compiled my Cruiser's Dictionary with that in mind.

For your partner, suggest that she read my log/answer/soliloquy, Women at the Helm. http://www.cruiser.co.za/hostmelon42.asp

Hope to see more of you on this board.


In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:43 PM   #3
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Thank you.

No you do not have to introduce yourself. It was through your site that I found this one. I found yours by searching for something; perhaps deep sea fishing, or maybe sea anchors; I am uncertain. I read with earnest your PDF file on the Jordan Drogue, and down loaded that. In time I will make one.

I read your E-Dictionary, and downloaded it. I await the completion of the entries for "T-U-V". As well I down-loaded the E-Book for Durban South Africa. That I only gave a glimpse at so far. I filed it for future reference and potential future study and use. I was impressed with what I read so far. Very good information to know if one is sailing there.

I see and realize members of this board are scattered around the globe and UCT zones. Responses could take a while, depending on peopleís situations and schedules.

I really liked your response and willingness to share your extensive knowledge, information, and experience.

I'll share Women at the Helm with Candee. I've already told her much about your web site, knowledge and posts. Candee and I most likely will "tie the knot". We are in no hurry, and want to ensure it is not a "Granny Knot". Much like we are in no hurry to sail off half-cocked, (prematurely and ill-prepared) and into big trouble, in spite of our eagerness.

Candee brings another dimension to our partnership and crew. She also served in the military. She has different skills than I, a variety of experiences, a higher education, and her world travels have been more extensive than mine. Independently we have been to all but a very few of the US States. Other than snakes, not much un-nerves her. I guess I'll assume the role of eel wrestler, snake charmer, and squid cleaner. She can cook very well, so do I. We love a variety of ethnic cuisines. I go beyond cooking, preparing, and preserving, butchering, canning, drying, brining, smoking, and more. Our goals and interests are common, including photography, history, and geography. We have the same taste in music and movies.

She is a morning person. I'm the opposite. I have done a lot of shift work in the military and on the job. That's ok. That's a good thing for watch duty.

I'll be asking many questions. I just wanted to introduce ourselves, and read much of what is already written before I start asking. I see that will take a while.

When in doubt, do the right thing.

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Old 02-09-2007, 02:48 PM   #4
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Welcome Jeff,

Looking forward to hearing more as you achieve your dreams.

Boring blog at https://www.yotblog.com/swagman
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Old 02-09-2007, 03:26 PM   #5
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Welcome aboard to you Jeff and Candee. Enjoy your visits to this board - there are lots of friendly, knowledgable people here and it is great to have a post like yours with many questions (ask as many as you want). I'm sure you'll get lots of assistance after everyone has digested your interesting post.

I hope that you will learn as much here as I have.

Fair winds.
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