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Old 05-11-2014, 11:34 AM   #21
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Although I don't today (or in near future) have needed bandwidth/time to fully expand upon what I'm about to say...

I feel the "dream-daze/research-time/buying-decision/purchase-haggle/new-owner-experience" of soon to be owners regarding any boat has three (3) levels; each having very unique qualities.

1. “Newbie”: No boating/marine experience at all, just a BIG wish! OMG – With soooo much to discuss, these persons have soooo much to learn!

2. “Middlebie”: Some boating/marine experience with desire to elevate their knowledge and move up to higher level of boating.

3. “Old Salts”: Brush up on marine ways as well as crash course on new technology advances.

I hope this post helps to define/separate levels of “boat-ownership” needs. Although my time for posting is restricted lately I will try to stay in this thread’s conversation.

Happy Boating Daze - Art
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Old 05-11-2014, 02:20 PM   #22
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Look, look, and look again! Have some general requirements but be open. As in my case, when you see it you'll know it!
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Old 05-11-2014, 08:17 PM   #23
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Look, look, and look again! Have some general requirements but be open. As in my case, when you see it you'll know it!
Agreed!!

Just be careful that you fulfill (and the boat you purchase fulfills) the general requirements “windmill” mentions. One thing you don't want to become is saddled by a pig-in-a-poke, i.e. a costly, labor intensive vessel that never really becomes what you vision of it was to begin with! Survey all portions very well before placing cash on the table! And, only offer the cash it is truly worth... or move on to another boat that will be better for you in the long run!

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Old 05-20-2014, 12:06 PM   #24
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The Process of Buying a Boat

And now my version of "Know when to hold them and know when to fold them."

"Know when to listen and know when to move on regardless."

You will get a tremendous number of opinions tossed at you. It's like any information, you have to carefully sort through it all. Almost all the information and opinions are good, but they come from many perspectives and you need to determine ultimately which of those perspectives is akin to yours.

A few simple examples. Galley up or down? No right or wrong but many like it one way and wouldn't have it the other. So think of their reasons and then how you feel. Size? Some will push small and some large. But listen to their reasoning and determine what is applicable to you. Number of staterooms. Well, we all carry different numbers of people different times. Style from lake express to ocean passagemaker. Well, the selection of the boat is very much geared to where and how you'll use it. If you intend to stick primarily to the ICW your needs are quite different from the person who intends to go to Bermuda, explore the Caribbean, cross through the Panama Canal and go to Alaska then pick up Catalina on the way back. If your usage is mostly weekend and occasionally a week at a time then much different than someone living on a boat full time.

Now when people are fairly universally saying the same thing to you about a specific boat, give that more credence. But ultimately, it's your choice, not theirs. But go through the process. This brings me back to a business philosophy I had. I didn't question the choices, recommendations or decisions, I always asked about the process of getting there. If someone came to me with a proposal, I'd center on what they'd done, what they'd studied, what they'd found out to get them to that point. Ultimately I feel choices aren't good or bad based on the choice made but based on how you made it. If you go through the process correctly, then you'll generally be happy with the decision. If you short cut the process, skip steps, your odds of making a mistake are greatly increased.

So to me it's like any project I've ever been a part of:

Project: Selecting a boat

Phase 1-Define the requirements. What do you want this boat to do, where will you use it. This should be a detailed list of deliverables you want. And, yes, I strongly encourage putting it in writing and modifying it as you learn more.

Phase 2-Explore and evaluate options against your requirements. That's the key. We actually had a sheet against which we checked off whether a boat met, or didn't meet or partially met each requirement. The key is having defined requirements so you're not just saying "I like that" but you're saying it meets 90% of my requirements and all the essential ones. You can compare two side by side. And yes, "wow factor" or "feel good factor" can be a requirement. I just see it and like the thought of it. But that is only one of many. This phase will have to talking to a lot of people and looking at many boats, in fact probably hundreds on line.

Phase 3-Pick the best matches and delve deeper. In systems it's determining the one you want to pilot. Same here just a different definition of pilot. This is when you then make the offer dependent on sea trial and survey. To help you determine which one to make the offer on, test anyway you can. Charter. Ride in similar. Meet and talk to other owners who might even take you on a ride.

Phase 4-Piloting the choice-Sea Trial and Survey. Prove your choice is what you think it is. When all goes well, this step is very valuable. It reaffirms your choice. When it doesn't go well, it is even more valuable. It prevents you from making a bad choice.

My point is don't try to jump in and just say, I like this boat or that one. Don't start at "what do you think about boat abc?" Don't short cut the process. Take whatever time it requires.

Next post will be a real life example.
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:40 PM   #25
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Our find loop boat requirements example

Project: Find a Loop Boat

Requirements. Note ours only so this doesn't apply to everyone's loop boat. Please note that I am not recommending this as your loop boat as it's absolutely wrong for most people. And yes these are the abbreviated requirements. This is only for illustrative purposes.

New or Used: New
Builder: Must be trustworthy, honest, ethical. Meet schedules.
Delivery deadline: December 2015
Overall quality of builds: Excellent
Country of build: US if all else equal but only if
LOA: 50-60'
Beam: 17-18'
Draft: Prefer 4'6" or less, Good 5' or less, Maximum 5'6"
Air Draft: Maximum 19'1"
Speed: WOT 25 knots, Cruise 18 knots
Rough water capabilities: Must be capable of running outside and crossing gulf of mexico in most conditions. Not an ICW only boat.
Fuel: 1000 gallons
Single or Twin: Twin
Engine brand: CAT or MTU
Minimum range at cruise: 300 nm
Minimum range at economy (10-12 knots) 700 nm
Headroom throughout: Minimum 6'8"
Generators: Two
Watermaker: Yes
Flybridge: Required
Helms: Upper and Lower
Electronics not detailed as all can be equally fitted
Must sleep: Minimum 6 Comfortably. 8 Somehow
Galley: Up, large, full size appliances
Washer/Dryer: Yes
Length trip without reprovisioning: 6 weeks
Dining: 8. Formal not required
Salon: 6, 8 with deck chairs
Bridge cover: Hard or canvas
Bow: Prefer bow seating at least for 2, Portuguese bridge a plus.
Safety main: Must have walk around space on both sides and bow. High sides or rails
Safety bridge: Must have high rails
Tender/Dinghy Storage: Must accommodate 11' Bridge or Garage
Following areas to be individually graded:
Lower Helm, Galley, Dining, Salon, Master, Master Head, VIP, VIP Head, Guest, Guest Head, Engine Room, Bow, Cockpit, Bridge Helm, Bridge
Exterior looks: Not important, can be pretty or even cute ugly.
Interior looks: Finish and appointment must be quality. Do not prefer ultra modern minimalist nor law library darkness
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Old 05-20-2014, 01:32 PM   #26
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Our find loop boat requirements exploration, narrowing

We looked through every possible builder of boats in the 40-65 foot range we could find. From Yachtworld to google, you name it.

The vast majority however were quickly eliminated by a few factors. Speed eliminated traditional trawlers. Yes, we're greatly in the minority here. Just knew ourselves. We got use to 50+ knots on the lake. Rough water capabilities eliminated some. Most of the British and Italian boats were eliminated because of things like tender storage (most either tow or carry on swim platform) or range (most have incredibly short range as they have large engines but small tanks).

There was one design we loved at the outset but what we saw as the builder's standards and outstanding lawsuits and documents we read eliminated them from all consideration.

Draft, both water and air eliminated many.

Of all boats we've ever purchased this one became the most complicated and most difficult to match our needs.

Ultimately we narrowed it down to two primary builders.

Grand Banks was the first. We evaluated the 59 Aleutian and also slipped a bit and evaluated the 65 Aleutian. They met almost all our requirements well, except the 65 was outside length requirements. Height would require hinged masts but that was no issue. Draft slightly more than ideal but acceptable. Builder trustworthy but a lot of turmoil among owners and board that disturbed us as did their lack of profits and being on the Singapore exchange watch list. Now very recent events make us feel a little better about their future. Building in Malaysia would involve a good bit of travel on our part or someone representing us. The 59 met our needs at a very high score. Something over 90%. Some big pluses such as the optional crew cabin giving three staterooms with three heads but for occasional use a fourth with a fourth head. Only real negative we found was the refrigeration/freezing capacity.

Now to the typical looper we fully recognize this would not be the right boat as it would be too inefficient fuel wise, too big, and they'd be paying for things that not only they didn't need but didn't want.

The other was Hatteras. Hatteras once had some great smaller MY's and even LRC's and many here have those. Today their one model that might fit is a 60. Wonderful in so many ways. Great builder. NC. Not far away. We even have family near. One less head than GB but that was livable. No problem hinging arch to clear. Draft actually less than the GB. Fuel usage worse, considerably. Full size refrig/freezer plus more below. One big negative on our part. They are building most of these without a lower helm. As such we don't think they really thought the lower helm through enough. Even on their larger boats the very slanted windshield very much restricts vision. First just in height and second in reflections. Also as the Hatteras tends to be a bit bow high especially in planing the lower helm is less than perfect there. We did ride in a 60 and pretend we had a lower helm. This pushed advantage to GB.

So decision made. Well, not quite. We kept looking at a 65' boat a builder we know well use to make but eliminated it as their smallest size. We mentioned it. Well, one thing leads to another and the mold and tooling still there and all in place and since they like us so much. Now we have no idea if it will even have a brand on it when built. Might be B&B. Going to be built in slower time, low priority. Pretty much being done as a personal favor to us for now, although could resurface later. But yes, we ended up doing this. So how did it evaluate. Well, US built. People we know well, trust well. The boat meets all our requirements very well except one. It's too long. We realize that will give us docking problems occasionally on the loop but have mapped the entire circuit and found it to be ok. (Boat is actually 69' with platform). Exceeds our requirements in many ways. three staterooms, three heads, plus crew cabin and head. Lots of bridge space. Accommodates 15' RIB.

Oh I did leave one thing, one very important out of my requirements post. Interior height. I'm a little over 6-4. Big problem, literally. But all three of these boats accommodated. The BandB (for lack of anything better to call it at the moment) even has a master stateroom that accommodates a king size bed easily as it's a full width stateroom.

As to sea trial, we did get a day on an older one. As to survey, we do have a surveyor in that area who will watch build and survey after.

Had we not gone this route we would have gone with the GB Aleutian 59.

The point here isn't what we chose or even our requirements. It's the process. Don't try to jump to choosing without doing requirements. Don't decide to forego sea trial or something as close as possible in a new build or survey. And we scream to get a survey even on a new build. This will force things being fixed pre-delivery and not post. Biggest suits I'm aware of all involved boats that did not pass survey and were taken on delivery under the guise the builder would correct. One was guaranteed to be Veritas classed unlimited and insurance was bound based on that. Veritas wouldn't pass it. Oh it is still available on the used market as it has been since almost the day it was built.

Good luck to anyone ever purchasing a boat. Following the right process doesn't guarantee success nor does taking shortcuts guarantee mistakes. We're just talking about improving the odds of not the right boat, but the right boat for you.
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Old 05-22-2014, 10:51 AM   #27
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37 Hershine

Hi Guys, I am looking into buying a 37 Hershine. I have been through the posts regarding buying a boat. However, any information/warnings regarding owning a 37 Hershine? Thanks
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Old 05-23-2014, 06:25 AM   #28
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Speed eliminated traditional trawlers

WHY , almost all the traveling is in rivers and dug canals with a 10KM speed limit.

10KM is about 5 or 6NM per hour , the Canadians have been disarmed , so holes at the WL ( FL, GA, Sc, NC) are probably not a hassle , but the local cops might be.

Even with a 100K boat , there wont be many miles you can travel at any speed over idle.

Be sure what you look at can fit the very restricted air height in places.
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Old 05-23-2014, 11:56 AM   #29
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Speed eliminated traditional trawlers

WHY , almost all the traveling is in rivers and dug canals with a 10KM speed limit.

10KM is about 5 or 6NM per hour , the Canadians have been disarmed , so holes at the WL ( FL, GA, Sc, NC) are probably not a hassle , but the local cops might be.

Even with a 100K boat , there wont be many miles you can travel at any speed over idle.

Be sure what you look at can fit the very restricted air height in places.
Actually can do more speed in many places as our looping will be a bit different. We see the coastal areas a lot already so will cover them quicker with mostly outside runs. We do intend to spend considerable time exploring the Great Lakes which will be done at speed. Great to have it especially if you want to cross. Then rivers like the Tennessee allow for speed. The Canals are actually from NY until you reach the Great Lakes. Then the Mississippi is slow to moderate speed in most areas. We like having speed to cross the Gulf with runs typically between Panama City or Apalachicola and Clearwater. When we loop the concentration will be on those areas we can't otherwise get to as often. We'll probably leave the boat inland on the Tennessee River a year at a time over it's years. Explore the Tennessee, Cumberland, Ohio, Missouri.

When we do the east coast, since you mentioned FL, GA, SC, NC, we do not spend much time on the ICW. We pick up different areas different trips. Here's just an example of one of our runs this past year up the East Coast. This was not on a loop type boat but could be done on the one we have planned assuming the same excellent conditions we had. Outside run from Ft. Lauderdale to Daytona. Daytona to Fernandina, then Fernandina to Savannah (2 days there). Savannah to Hilton Head to Charleston to Myrtle Beach (2 days). Quick run from Myrtle Beach to Beaufort (4 days). Quick run to Hampton (3 days), then Washington for 6 days. From there to Cape Charles (2 days), then 11 days between Annapolis and Baltimore and enjoying the Chesapeake. Cape Charles again, then Ocean City for 2 days, Cape May for 2, Atlantic City for 3. NYC for 8, Greenport for 2, Brooklyn, Atlantic City, Ocean City, Hampton, Beaufort. Wrightsville, Wilmington, Bald Head (2 days), Myrtle 5, Charleston 3, Hilton Head 3, Savannah 3, Fernandina, St Augustine 4, Titusville 2, Fort Lauderdale.

Total time 90 days. Actually broken into two 45 day segments with a trip home in the middle. 270 engine hours, 39 days of movement. 5100 nm. Average speed underway 19 knots. % days moved 43%. Average hours on water per day moved 6.9. Average hours on water over total days 3 hours. A bit distorted as little time in FL since we cruise Florida all the time.

That does make my point about knowing ones own preferences. We fully understand how our speed isn't what many would choose.

When we do the loop the first time, our plan is something like this. Move boat to NE in spring. Be in NY ready to start the canal run the first of May. Through the canals slowly but then spend the summer enjoying and cruising all the Great Lakes. Leave Chicago last September and head down Mississippi to Kentucky Lake and on to Pickwick, leaving the boat for most of the winter at Aqua Yacht Harbor. Following spring and summer cruise the Tennessee and Cumberland. Do a fall color cruise on the Tennessee. Leave boat again at AYH. Following spring and summer cruise the Ohio and the Missouri. Then on down the Tenn Tom to Mobile. From there a quick cruise home to Fort Lauderdale. Boat then probably leaves Fort Lauderdale March 2016. Arrives back December 2018.
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Old 06-25-2014, 08:32 AM   #30
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Sorry BandB

Quote:
Originally Posted by BandB View Post
Project: Find a Loop Boat

Requirements. Note ours only so this doesn't apply to everyone's loop boat. Please note that I am not recommending this as your loop boat as it's absolutely wrong for most people. And yes these are the abbreviated requirements. This is only for illustrative purposes.

New or Used: New
Builder: Must be trustworthy, honest, ethical. Meet schedules.
Delivery deadline: December 2015
Overall quality of builds: Excellent
...modern minimalist nor law library darkness
But in your exemple it is difficult (impossible !?) to go futrther than the second recomendations : "Builder: Must be trustworthy, honest, ethical. Meet schedules."
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Old 06-25-2014, 09:26 AM   #31
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Ever notice how many people keep buying different boats? IMO that happens if you don't really understand what you need in order to what you want.
Buying a live aboard ocean cruiser doesn't make sense if your next ten years will be weekending on a lake.
Makers sell boats by length but you live in the interior volume. Bow pulpits and swim platforms added into the length help the marketers and perhaps add to bragging rights at the club but do not improve interior space.
I emphasize interior space because if you will be aboard for a long time the weather may not always be comfortable outside.
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Old 06-25-2014, 09:30 AM   #32
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IMO you need to look at 50 boats before buying. Spend time on each imagining how you would use the spaces.

Can you see the bow from the steering location? Is foredeck access safe? Does the bow flare enough to break waves or will you have to sound the dive claxon when waves approach?
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Old 06-25-2014, 09:44 AM   #33
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Don't start shopping by brand or boat type unless you are very familiar with the size boat you are looking for. Look at a lot of boats and see what features you like and what you don't. Yes, even sport fish might provide some insight.
Use what you see to make a list of what feature are really important to you, eventually narrowing the list to no more than 10 must have features..

Once you have your list the brand and what the maker calls the boat becomes less important. Only a boat that fits your list will be acceptable. It even allows you to creat price competition between brands because if it meets your list it is comparable.
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Old 06-25-2014, 10:24 AM   #34
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But in your exemple it is difficult (impossible !?) to go futrther than the second recomendations : "Builder: Must be trustworthy, honest, ethical. Meet schedules."
No it isn't. There are reputable, trustworthy builders. There are the opposite too, however.
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Old 06-25-2014, 10:38 AM   #35
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A mistake often made is buying a boat not best suited for how you will actually use it. A passagmaker is probably not the best for extended ICW cruising
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Old 06-25-2014, 11:09 AM   #36
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Agree with Bayview 100%. Personally I can't imagine going out and buying a boat for extended cruising and live aboard without having spent a fair amount of time on the water in different sizes and types. If one hasn't done this through ownership or having lots of friends to cruise with, then charter. I've written extensively on this on other threads.

Though for our personal purposes, we bought a big whale of a boat to be our house and cruising platform, I still think Skipper Bob's maxim is spot on: " Don't buy the biggest boat you can afford, buy the smallest boat you can be comfortable in" . We did look at 67 footers. Our boat served its purpose wonderfully, for us for the 6 years we lived on her and cruised her, as time went by we liked it better and better.

The point on volume is an important one. Big differences in the same length. Below is a picture of our boat, transoms even, next to a 55' Fleming. I've been on Flemings and think they would be wonderful to be underway in. For us the perfect boat would be a "transformer", a Fleming underway, our boat at anchor or otherwise at rest. For us the living accommodations and engine room of the Fleming were unacceptable.

So obviously I think it is very important to know what your personal check list is of ergonomic, comfort and sea handling issues.

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Old 06-25-2014, 11:25 AM   #37
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Indeed, virtually everyone will spend more time at anchor or docked than underway and if it is comfortable more time inside than out.
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Old 06-25-2014, 11:31 AM   #38
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Indeed, virtually everyone will spend more time at anchor or docked than underway.
Selecting a boat is half knowing the boats, but half is just knowing yourself.

Part of the selection can be reduced to easily defined items too and a checklist but then there is the subjective part. There's that boat you get on that makes sense, that others love, that seems to fit a lot of your needs, but you just don't like and can't see yourself owning.
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Old 06-25-2014, 01:24 PM   #39
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Well said
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Old 06-25-2014, 02:56 PM   #40
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It is also critical that both partners love the boat. "Happy wife/happy life" as Jeff Allen says. On occasion the Better Half isn't heard -- I mean really really heard.

I met a couple who lost their trawler in Hurricane Ivan. He found another that was spectacular -- just what he wanted, so he bought it. She hated the boat. Loathed would not be too strong. You see, she said "no" and "not that boat" but he didn't hear her.

The captain thought she would come to love it as he did. After all, she loved the first trawler. But she didn't, and she never would.

The lady, South American, lived to cook for her man and her galley was horrid. Absolutely the worst. To open the oven she had to step out into the passageway. There was no counter space (couldn't roll out a pie crust!)

Each meal was served on the aft deck. That's up three steps from the galley, out the side door then up two more to the aft deck.

When she looked out she saw the inside of the side deck -- it was white.

Captain Mike didn't hear his wife. And within a year she was in a condo and the boat was for sale.

Would they have been long term cruisers? I cannot say for certain, but that galley was never going to please her. And there really was no way to fix it --

I was sad for them both.

Another friend had an Atlantic44 -- similar set-up and Tessie loved her boat. She and Ted entertained on the aft deck regularly (and she's a great cook!) ...

Though the boats are similar one was loved and the other not. Each of us is different. That's why so many boat builders exist: to fill niches.

Still, if a person has zero boating experience I advocate buying a "Starter Boat" versus the Last Boat that is craved. The learning process is better served by a Ford Escort rather than a Mercedes Benz. The mistakes made on a $10k boat are better "swallowed" than on a $100k (or more) yacht.

And time spent on a smaller inexpensive boat will allow refinement of what is important. Follow the $10k starter boat with charters of more appropriate boats. Then zero in on what's critical for your happiness quotient.

The learning gained by that 10k boat will well serve you in the larger boat. You'll learn first hand about bilge pumps, wiring, plumbing, navigation, electronics and more. All from a platform that you can sell tomorrow without taking a financial licking.

It's also best in my opinion to have a Way Out -- and it is easier to like something if you know you have a choice. A Starter Boat offers that Way Out; she also offers a big step forward in the process of becoming an Old Salt.

Plus of course Survey, survey, survey.
And imagine yourself either at anchor or docked. Most time-wise of your boating will be done in a stationary position. Make sure you're comfy when stopped.

Like others have said, buy the boat today for the use you'll make of her this year and next. There's no need to buy a Blue-Water, displacement hull, long-range cruiser first. You need to know what pleases you most.

As for me, I like coastal hopping, and short days. Long days at anchor, and relaxing. It's not about distance traveled nor about bragging rights for the fastest boat. She's not fancy -- Seaweed is a boat. And for me, that's perfect.

Others prefer the Yacht ownership. The Wow Factor, and such. Although at times I yearn for a bit more Bristol (fancy) finish, for me, Seaweed is home. She's a bit rough around the edges at 31 years old and has served me well as home for the past six years. With a few more improvements she'll be almost perfect.

Oh, and one more thing: know that however your boat is when you find her, you can change her/make her better. Seaweed came without solar panels, no wind generator, no windlass, inadequate anchor, lacked access to storage places, etc. I've been working on all those things.

My biggest advice though if you're shopping for a boat home is to buy a boat that has been home to someone for YEARS. No, everything won't be the way you'd prefer, but the previous owner will have gained access to storage spaces, made changes that will benefit you, and more.

I know I'm always fascinated by the "little things" that owners do to make their homes better/more comfortable. Factory boats might be fancy (and are!) but it's the little touches I like best. Stupid stuff, like on Anja the owner has a retractable clothes line in the head for hanging damp clothes.

Or the spot under the steps with storage for tools so they are right by the engine. Or the spice rack in the galley that keeps everything tidy even in a blow.... little stuff, but happiness quotient enhancers.

I've rambled. I'll hush now.
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