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Calvin19

Sailing adventure life or Regular adventure life?

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I am closing on my house tomorrow morning. Sold it to a nice couple with (I think) a kid and one on the way. Point is, I bought this house on a foreclosure 5 years ago and spent the last 8 months rebuilding it. EVERYTHING. Learned how to do it all from youtube. not kidding. Pocketing a number that surprised me.

I did NOT learn cruising from youtube. I have been on 3 multi-week cruises on my old 40' cutter rigged sloop. Two as captain. That boat has been out of my hands for almost 5 years now. I was approved by Moorings charter company to captain any of the boats they rent (up to 58' cats). I do not have any ratings, only experience. I am captaining a 48' cat for 2 weeks in November, a friend of mine called me when none of them were approved by moorings to captain. Getting a paid cruise. Me and 4 couples. Should be interesting. Awesome, but interesting.

Another friend (with money) expressed interest in buying an older (cruise-worthy) 38-42' catamaran and sailing for a while with me. Years. Tropics. Big water. LONG legs. We would split the cost of the boat and use standard minimizing of underway costs. Still safe, legal, etc. but as cheap as possible. See how long we last. Should be years. When we run out of money we sell the boat, split that and go home. Figure shit out then.

Problem is, my family is pretty against it. They say I am 'running away', and what the house investment gained for me monetarily will be squandered and I'll have nothing to come back on. My dad is a hedge fund manager so you can imagine his position on buying a sailboat with modest real estate money. The number I got from this house sale is the higher 5 digits.

I'm 31. I have NO responsibilities to anyone. I have an opportunity, and I know that if i just invest it and keep doing what I do I will regret it. My lower legs are also destroyed. I have early onset arthritis in both legs. My parents are 63, and I have more issues than they do. first glance I can do anything a normal in-shape 31yo can do, but I can't jog, etc. Will I be able to do this in 10 years? Probably not.

A sailboat is not a great investment, but it's not really meant to be one. something the family seems to misunderstand, or refuse to understand.

I don't know where I will be in 2 years if I do not buy a boat. I have an idea, and I understand that the possibilities, while endless, have probabilities that would allow a reliable narrowing down. This same could be said about my future if I buy a sailboat and sail south and away, but none of those probabilities are bad. Adventure, confidence, OCEAN, danger, misery, islands, fear, beaches. STARS. wind.

I've asked my entire extended family about it, all my friends, and the responses are pretty divided evenly. I figured I would ask the skydivers here. All suggestions welcome.

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I've asked my entire extended family about it, all my friends, and the responses are pretty divided evenly. I figured I would ask the skydivers here. All suggestions welcome.


I think there are two things to think about here:

1. When the money runs out, are there plans for you to be self-sufficient, or will you be supported by your parents? If the former, then I think they have no legitimate say in your decision (except for you to consider as you would consider advice from anyone who knows and loves you). If the latter, then I do think you need to give serious weight to their thoughts.

If you will be able to take care of yourself after your sailing adventure, then:

2. You are weighing, on the one hand, a significant amount of cash (which can translate into security) against, on the other hand, what is likely to be an awesome life experience. Really only you can make the decision of whether or not it's worth it to you.

Think not only of how it will feel to be out on the water, and those endless days of sailing, but also how it will feel when you need to sell the sail boat, and get only a fraction of what you paid for it, and what you will need to do to provide for yourself afterward, and how hard and how many years you will need to work just to get yourself back to where you are now.

On the flip side, think not only of how great it would be to have this money in the bank, earning interest for you, but also how you'll feel when you're too old to do this sailing trip, and how you'll wonder how it would have been had you taken this chance.

I don't think anyone but you can make the call of whether the trade-off is worth it.

Good luck with whatever you decide!

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Calvin19

I have early onset arthritis in both legs...


Ask your legs how will they feel when you're out of money, will they support you in earning some more?

and on the other side there's this
"I spent a lot of money on booze, birds and fast cars. The rest I just squandered." - George Best

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If you buy the right boat you shouldn't have to blow all your money. The market in some areas is soft right now. The Houston area was hit hard by the cuts at NASA. Boats in Clear Lake are Cheep. Don't but a Cat. You don't want a Cat for deep water or long trips. Sooner or later you'll hit weather. You can be careful but with long legs sooner or later you run out of luck and Cats don't do well in seas and weather. They wind up up side down way too easy. Not stable enough front to back for big seas, high wind, and too stable side to side. It will come up over a swell into a big gust. Catch air under the front. Lift the nose. Sink the tail. And lay over on it's back up side down. Game over. On the other hand, rather then healing over or turning windward to easy the sails like a Good boat, ie. Mono hull, a good gust will over load the rigging and you'll lose the mast. If you've got too much sail up on a cat, and your head up your ass, the first warning you'll have is when you lose the rig. Don't get me wrong. Cats are awesome but they are what they are. It's not some thing you want to take to sea. don't be seduced by all the room. You can get twice the boat for half the price in a mono hull and have some thing that is truly sea worthy.

Buy your self a 50 ft out of some place like Houston. The Caribbean is a great place to start your trip.

As to the rest of your money. Or all of it if you decide to go another route. Have you noticed that the stock market just crashed? Good time to look at other investments if you have some cash right now.

Lee
Lee
lee@velocitysportswear.com
www.velocitysportswear.com

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I'd totally suggest going, but leaving a nest egg to grow as well. Because your trip may end when there's an unexpelted health issue, not just running out of money.

But my sister-in-law's younger brother is now on his way to New Zealand from Brazil, having spent the last several years (many severals :P) rebuilding a ragged-out 35-footer.

If you look for the opportunities in this trip, you might find a buyer for a blog, or periodic magazine articles targeted to people who only wish they could make such a trip.

Wendy P.
There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence. (tbrown)

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Calvin19

I am closing on my house tomorrow morning. Sold it to a nice couple with (I think) a kid and one on the way. Point is, I bought this house on a foreclosure 5 years ago and spent the last 8 months rebuilding it. EVERYTHING. Learned how to do it all from youtube. not kidding. Pocketing a number that surprised me.

I did NOT learn cruising from youtube. I have been on 3 multi-week cruises on my old 40' cutter rigged sloop. Two as captain. That boat has been out of my hands for almost 5 years now. I was approved by Moorings charter company to captain any of the boats they rent (up to 58' cats). I do not have any ratings, only experience. I am captaining a 48' cat for 2 weeks in November, a friend of mine called me when none of them were approved by moorings to captain. Getting a paid cruise. Me and 4 couples. Should be interesting. Awesome, but interesting.

Another friend (with money) expressed interest in buying an older (cruise-worthy) 38-42' catamaran and sailing for a while with me. Years. Tropics. Big water. LONG legs. We would split the cost of the boat and use standard minimizing of underway costs. Still safe, legal, etc. but as cheap as possible. See how long we last. Should be years. When we run out of money we sell the boat, split that and go home. Figure shit out then.

Problem is, my family is pretty against it. They say I am 'running away', and what the house investment gained for me monetarily will be squandered and I'll have nothing to come back on. My dad is a hedge fund manager so you can imagine his position on buying a sailboat with modest real estate money. The number I got from this house sale is the higher 5 digits.

I'm 31. I have NO responsibilities to anyone. I have an opportunity, and I know that if i just invest it and keep doing what I do I will regret it. My lower legs are also destroyed. I have early onset arthritis in both legs. My parents are 63, and I have more issues than they do. first glance I can do anything a normal in-shape 31yo can do, but I can't jog, etc. Will I be able to do this in 10 years? Probably not.

A sailboat is not a great investment, but it's not really meant to be one. something the family seems to misunderstand, or refuse to understand.

I don't know where I will be in 2 years if I do not buy a boat. I have an idea, and I understand that the possibilities, while endless, have probabilities that would allow a reliable narrowing down. This same could be said about my future if I buy a sailboat and sail south and away, but none of those probabilities are bad. Adventure, confidence, OCEAN, danger, misery, islands, fear, beaches. STARS. wind.

I've asked my entire extended family about it, all my friends, and the responses are pretty divided evenly. I figured I would ask the skydivers here. All suggestions welcome.



Go sailing....;)

BUT do not do it on an OLD multihull... get a good sound monohull.
The ocean is VERY unforgiving of any unseen "issues" and when you need your boat to keep you alive when Poseidon decides to test you with some of the weather he can toss your way, especially in the tropics.... a good sound cruising monohull may just save your life .

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I think you should go, but only if you have a good plan for the future for when sailing is over. Do you have skills you can use to immediately get a good enough job to support yourself, so all of your naysayers won't have to support you? At 31, you should totally have enough time left in your life to be able to spend a few years on being carefree and still work towards having a nest egg later in life.
She is Da Man, and you better not mess with Da Man,
because she will lay some keepdown on you faster than, well, really fast. ~Billvon

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RiggerLee

Don't but a Cat. You don't want a Cat for deep water or long trips. Sooner or later you'll hit weather. You can be careful but with long legs sooner or later you run out of luck and Cats don't do well in seas and weather.




This was my first thought. I've done some 3 and 4 day ocean races in 40' Cats and it's not a particularly comfortable experience. If you're doing this as an adventure then you don't need to go as fast as possible - really you just want to cruise along with the minimum fuss. I think a decent monohull might be a better option. Pick something with some mass to it to help power through the swells.

If you've not done any trans-oceanic stuff before I'd highly recommend a proper course in navigation, and definitely not to skimp on the communications gear. Get a satellite phone. It's a really big ocean out there - cruising from the Azores to the UK we went nearly 2 weeks without seeing anything. No boats, no birds, nothing. And that's only half an ocean...

Make sure you arrange check-in times with family or friends - just a daily update of lat & long is enough and stick to it.

I'd strongly recommend reading through the ISAF Off Shore Racing requirements and using those to decide how to provision your boat.
http://www.sailing.org/documents/offshorespecialregs/index.php - I'd be reading at least the Category 1 stuff.

2 people is kinda light crewed for trans ocean stuff - particularly if you've not done much of it before. If 1 person gets injured or sick on a leg and can't pull their weight it will make things a hundred times harder. Something to keep in mind.

I wouldn't say trans ocean stuff is 'fun', but it's a very special kind of loneliness.Definitely an experience that will stick with you.

The decision whether to do it or not is up to you and there's some good advice up thread, but I would say that if you're going to do it, do it right - not cheap.

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NewGuy2005

For what it is worth, from what I have seen you post on this forum, your current "life" does not sound at all boring.



Naturally. :P
That's why the only distinction between the two options in the title is "regular" vs. "sailing" adventure life. I know that even without a huge sailing chapter (or, you know, all the way through epilogue) life will have more grand adventures.

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kallend

The world is full of boring people.
Don't be one of them.



I have to say that reading Calvin/Matt's posts over the years his life has seemed anything but boring, and I expect even if he chose the "invest / regular adventuring" option it would still not be boring. How many remember the videos of the giant rope swing thing (can't remember the name they called it).

I say go for it. I like Lee's idea of really looking for a good deal on a good boat so as to minimize the loss after selling it. Do prices vary a lot around the world? Could you buy something in one part of the world and sail it another part to sell it for a better price?
It's flare not flair, brakes not breaks, bridle not bridal, "could NOT care less" not "could care less".

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About the Cat vs mono comments:

MY first choice is a big monohull.

Well, my first choice is a HUGE monohull. A Perani Navi, specifically the The Maltese Falcon. But I'll take any huge ketch they make with the NYC ballet cast as the crew.

First choice is a 50' center cockpit mono, but my 100% noob partner is dead set on a cat even after my arguments otherwise. (He has more money.) I have never sailed a cat bigger than a Hobie, but I am captaining a 48' cat in November with him, his GF, and 3 other couples out of Grenada. He SAYS he wants to do at least one double overnight leg to see how he likes it. Free trip for me, but I'll be a loaner amongst happy vacationers that I don't know. I would love to do the long legs too, but this is me as the ONLY experienced sailor, him, and 7 other people who are going on a Caribbean tour. Anyone who has cruised can tell you it's not a 'vacation' even in easy conditions.

As for crew, the plan is to bring 1-3 crew/friends with us for any big legs. Even a week with only 2 crew sucks for shifts.

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wmw999


If you look for the opportunities in this trip, you might find a buyer for a blog, or periodic magazine articles targeted to people who only wish they could make such a trip.

Wendy P.



That's one argument I had FOR a catamaran, With another few months at sea I could qualify for a captain's cert and we could use the boat for charters to keep us afloat.

And before that, yes of course I will be looking for anything to supplement costs. I will be writing a blog anyway, might as well promote something.

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NewGuy2005


The voting is unanimous. I bet a lot of people here wish they could do the same thing.



I am not too surprised at the voting results. I am going to go on a stock market forum and ask the same thing and see what they have to say. Well, maybe with the last few days of trading they would say the same thing;)

-SPACE-

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SethInMI

***The world is full of boring people.
Don't be one of them.



I have to say that reading Calvin/Matt's posts over the years his life has seemed anything but boring, and I expect even if he chose the "invest / regular adventuring" option it would still not be boring. How many remember the videos of the giant rope swing thing (can't remember the name they called it).

Man... that was barely out of high school. FRASCA.

Old
https://vimeo.com/9330103
New
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcwrRA2BIlw
Quote


I say go for it. I like Lee's idea of really looking for a good deal on a good boat so as to minimize the loss after selling it. Do prices vary a lot around the world? Could you buy something in one part of the world and sail it another part to sell it for a better price?




My thought was exactly that.
Prices do vary, but I don't know enough about the used boat market to answer that. Coincidentally we have been eyeing listings in Panama. Made some friends when I was there.

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Calvin19



First choice is a 50' center cockpit mono, but my 100% noob partner is dead set on a cat even after my arguments otherwise. (He has more money.)




This guy has no sailing experience?

Sorry - but you need to pull rank. He may have the money but to my mind that doesn't mean he gets any sort of say in the boat or how it's sailed. That's like letting a skydiving student dictate the gear they'd use.

Pick a medium size monohull that's easy to sail shorthanded. The Falcon is a gorgeous boat but I wouldn't fancy rattling around it on my own! :D

He's also done no sailing and wants to go straight to years of doing it? Seems like he needs to spend some time on the water first. I'd be super leery about letting him take watch shifts unsupervised.

You can do long legs with 1 inexperienced person on board, but I'd want at least 3 other very experienced crew with me.

I'm off sailing this afternoon and we've got some super experienced open water sailors on our boat - One of them has sailed hawaii to the US solo a few times. I'll ask for their recommendations.

Edit: I'd also suggest considering an aft-cockpit configuration for cruising.

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I've got over 20,000 miles offshore and agree with every poster above saying go with a monohull; not a multihull. Everyone I know who has ever taken a year "out" to sail around the world regards it as the most enjoyable time of their life. There are only a couple windows in life where this is possible for most people (school, career, family complicates the plans).

An alternate idea, would be to do the same time sailing the world, but keeping your money in your pocket. You'd be surprised at the number of wealthy people who need spare hands with their boats. Have a look at something like www.crewseekers.net to get some ideas.

In later years, your best stories/memories will be of what you've experienced, not the shit you've bought.
"Pain is the best instructor, but no one wants to attend his classes"

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yoink

***

First choice is a 50' center cockpit mono, but my 100% noob partner is dead set on a cat even after my arguments otherwise. (He has more money.)




This guy has no sailing experience?
He was on a big diving cat for a week in Central America, but as a guest passenger.
As crew, no. Maybe some inland sailing. No cabin boats or overnights.
Quote


Sorry - but you need to pull rank. He may have the money but to my mind that doesn't mean he gets any sort of say in the boat or how it's sailed. That's like letting a skydiving student dictate the gear they'd use.

He's also done no sailing and wants to go straight to years of doing it? Seems like he needs to spend some time on the water first. I'd be super leery about letting him take watch shifts unsupervised.



I explained to him that buying one that is not brand new (Of course I said i'm not opposed to that as long as he pays for 95% of a half million dollar boat) would take months to shake down and fit (the boat and him/us). He will have his first taste in November, but it won't be real open ocean, just predictable Bahamas. If he has any discomfort there I can just buy myself a 40' cutter with electric everything. Or wait.
Quote



I'm off sailing this afternoon and we've got some super experienced open water sailors on our boat - One of them has sailed hawaii to the US solo a few times. I'll ask for their recommendations.

Edit: I'd also suggest considering an aft-cockpit configuration for cruising.



That would be great! thank you!

I had a '79 40' Cutter-rigged sloop made by Yorktown. Center cockpit. I liked the visibility and the huge master. What is your reasoning?

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I'm not ragging on you, I just want to make sure I've got this clear. Your partner is not a sailor. You sail but you have no time on a big cruising Cat. It's going to be three couples on vacation and you as the only crew. Your friend says he wants to try this out and learn but he will have his girl friend with him. It goes with out saying that she will consider this a vacation and will expect and demand his attention. Looks like you will be standing your night watches alone. If I'm off base correct me.

No shit, I wouldn't do it this way. The first thing I'd do is hire an old salty no nonsense ferry captain to come along for the ride. Some one with lots of time on big cats. Tell your friend it's worth the money. Even if he's just their to sit back in the corner and give you shit about what your doing wrong. Try to get some one that's operated in the area and knows the waters. Make the room. Hot bunk with him. You wont both be down at the same time. I honestly don't think you're qualified to single hand this big Cat alone which is what you are really looking at.

I know you're a sailor but a big Cat is... different. At the very least buy a book on cruising Cats. I don't know much about them beyond what I've been told from a friend that used to charter them. he was a captain that taught ASA cruising courses on 50 Cats out of Belize and La Plia. Here are the highlights that I remember. Very stable. Too stable. Unlike a Hobie that will fly a hull a large heavy cat will not heal. Their is no real indication of how much load you are carrying in the rig. They have strain indicators. Load cells in the rigging to tell you how much stain you are pulling. You have to watch them. It's like flying instruments. Imagine if you were in IFR and you were def and could not hear the RPM's on the engine or hear the wind noise. The Air speed, Tac and Altimeter would be the only warning. So people get out in a nice freshening breeze with all their sails up and every thing is fine. As the wind picks up the the boat is moving right along and every thing seem fine. What a great boat. Maybe they turn a little more up into the wind and it's just singing. Then the mast goes over the side. No shit, it happens. Welcome to big cats. The next issue is that the hulls are skinny. Cats have skinny hulls. Other wise they wouldn't be cats just two mono hulls stuck together. The reason they are fast is that the fineness ratio is over... I don't recall. But that's what lets them beat the normal hull speed limitation. It's all about how the quarter wave forms. But the bottom line is skinny. No meat at the front or back. So you can push down on the bow and it will go down. Or push down on the stern and it will go down. Say into a wave. A mono hull has a lot more meat, volume, in the hull there and will resist this better. Also a mono hull doesn't have a deck like a big wing. They make it from mesh for a reason. The way you die in a big cat is to come over a swell into the wind, catch air under the front and the stern sinks down into the wave, remember this happens easily, and the cat lays gently over on it's back. And you will never ever get a big cat back over. No shit, why do you think they all have escape hatches in the belly on the BOTTOM. Who feels the need to put a fucking door in the floor of their boat. Only a cat driver. The best survival strategy is to turn slightly off the wind and ride over the swells at an angle. Draw a line from the leeward stern tip to the windward bow and keep that line into the wind. The idea is to take the wind on the free board of you upwind pontoon. Block as much of the wind from getting under your deck as you can. It's your best chance to ride out weather with out turning turtle. Again, this is just shit that I've heard. I'm not an expert. Find some one who is.

As to a captain. It might make the trip a lot cheaper in terms of insurance. Defer some of his cost. Also, their isn't a chance in hell of getting insurance for the two of you for your own cat in open water. You friend may be able to take that kind of loss but you can't. A mono hull, at least you have some chance of getting it back to port if some thing goes wrong. A Cat will be a total write off. A mono, something goes wrong. You weather it out and get a tow. You may have to pay a ransom on the tow but it wont sink and you'll get it home. May have to rebuild a engine but you shouldn't lose every thing. You might even be able to qualify for some kind of insurance on it eventually.

Just some thoughts.

Beat some since into your partner. If he insist on a cat. Let him go it alone financially. Tell him that you'll just come along and crew for him. I wouldn't take my nest egg to sea in the form of a multi hull.

Lee
Lee
lee@velocitysportswear.com
www.velocitysportswear.com

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