crazy idea ?

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by bernhardusa, Jul 5, 2009.

  1. bernhardusa
    Joined: Sep 2007
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    bernhardusa Junior Member

    Hello friends,

    since I am a kid, I always had a littel crazy idea... and if possible, I would like to realize that madness... lol:

    well.. unfortunately I don't have any knowledge about boats... I know there are many many different kind of boats, motor boats, or sialing boats etc.

    What I would like to do ?
    I would like to buy a boat, and live on that boat and sail on that boat always close to the coast.

    But because this is such a crazy dream of mine, I really don't know if this will ever happen.

    And I would like to keep the costs very low, and so I thought maybe it's better I do have a sailing boat, because I don't need to have an engine I need to maintane all the time, and it uses a lot of gas.

    the other thing is that it should be comftable, and I don't know abotu the size. How big is big enough so you have it comftable ?

    and what can everybody tell me about the price range ?
    does it start at millions of dollars or is it possible to start with a few hundred thousands of dollars ?

    and how long does a boat last ?
    and what instruments do I need to have on board ?

    and where can I learn theroy and practice in sailing ?

    and and and and....

    I know it's a crazy idea... but I feel this is what life makes so wonderful.

    thank you for every littel idea, suggestions and hints, I really appreciate that much,

    bernhard :)
  2. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    Welcome at the asylum Bernhard!

    To your last question first: find the local siling club and offer your service as a deckhand. Learn how they do theyr mistakes and get some sealegs.
    A boat can last much longer than your grandchildren will manage to live if the building material is wood, Wood Epoxy, steel, and maybe aluminium.
    A regular usage and maintenance are the keys.
    A comfortable liveaboard starts in the 40" range and for a single person ends at about 50" to be manageable.
    Some simple designs start in the 150.000$ Ballpark, though the upper end can be at about 500.00$.
    Going for a motorboat has no disadvantage in terms of cost or maintenance compared with a sailing boat (often the opposite is true).

    Living aboard is at least twice as expensive as living ashore! So you should either rob a bank now (after 20 years you will be free again) or make your adventure a living.
    That said I recommend to go back to your Alma Mater and study dentistry, thats only 4 years, so you save some 16 against plan A.
    Being a dentist, your main equipment (besides a compass) would be a proper drill and a chair, enabling you to leave the coastal regions and offer your services to the sailing community worldwide at each and every "paradise anchorage".

    Now we can focus on the and and and and................

  3. lewisboats
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    lewisboats Obsessed Member

    Let's start here...but we gotta know a bit more info about where you are currently before anyone can recommend anything. Learn to sail first...heck you might not even like it or you might find out your equilibrium can't handle it. There are places that have sailing schools, you can crew on different boats etc.

  4. bernhardusa
    Joined: Sep 2007
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    bernhardusa Junior Member


    Hello friends,

    thank you for your first impressions... ok, so first thing is definitly learning how to sail.

    @size of the boat:
    if I would consider 4-5 persons, how big does it have to be ?

    a sailign boat is as expensive in maintanance as a mototr boat ?
    I was thinking, you don't need an engine on board, no fuel or gas for a sailing boat ? so no gas or fuel, less money - not true ?

    @living aboard:
    wooaaaa, this is twice expensive ? why is that ?

    haha, well that sounds like a very cool plan... I am not a dentist, and I guess this isn't what I wanna do, drilling holes into teeth.... but a cool idea.. lol:

    hmm.. right now I live in MI, we have lot's of lakes here.. but I guess the lakes are really different to the ocean... I am from Europe acutally, and as a kid I've seen the ocean really rough... I know even a very expensive motorboat can be a nutshell on the ocean...

    this is why I would like to have all necessary equipment on board, to know where a thunderstorm is, and try to leave as soon as you get the information, and stay in calm regions....

    thank you so much for your feedback,
    as more inor I do get as more I get all realistic facts...
    this is what I am looking for..

    thank you so much,
  5. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    Hope that cleared the vision a bit!

  6. Submarine Tom

    Submarine Tom Previous Member



    Yes you can "buy a boat, and live on that boat and sail on that boat always

    close to the coast."

    Listen to all advice, go with what advice seems right to you, and don't be fooled.

    You could easily realize your dream and then some...

    Get yourself a little dinghy, preferably with a small sail, and start rowing

    and sailing up and down the shore line. Always be cautious, carry at least

    the minimum required safety equipment and know how, and when, to use it.

    P.S. You're not that new to this forum, you signed on almost two years ago!

  7. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Hang onto your dreams, but don't do anything other then gain some experience sailing right now.

    The preferences you desire answer for are application specific, each person develops these from their personal experiences, none being the same. What you desire now will dramatically change with your experiences.

    You can live aboard a 20' boat, though it's not going to be especially comfortable, unless you're young, without a girlfriend and don't ask much of life. This can be quite cheap, especially if you get lucky, with slip fees, utilities, etc.

    As has been suggested, go down to the local sailing club, tell them you're a newbie and want to learn about sailing. They'll happily put you on a boat and you'll quickly see what's up. You'll also quickly see that each skipper and crew you met are very different and approach this sailing thing differently. Absorb all you can and save up for a "beater" (a serviceable, but well used boat). This first boat will teach you much about what to have and not have aboard, maybe becoming a stepping stone to a live aboard. On the other hand you may find you just hate this stuff and would rather suck up off your parents for as long as you can instead.

    Get some experience so you have something to base you opinions against, then start thinking about "sailing way".
  8. bernhardusa
    Joined: Sep 2007
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    bernhardusa Junior Member


    first let me all thank you for your comments, I really appreciate that.

    @sailing boat:
    hmm, what is not really clear for me.. why is an engine on a sialig boat required ?

    is it just for electricity, or is it required in general to navigate the boat to the right place ? hmm.. I can't really imagine... uff....

    @Marina rates:
    what is that ? are these the costs you have to pay if you want to use a dock ?

    this is another veyr important information for me.. because as newbie, I was thinkign the following... I don't want to use docks where I have to pay a lot of money.. in genral I would like to avoid to use them at all.. now the question is, how to get from the boat to the coast ? well.. I would use a small tiny rowboat or rubber raft.. or somehting similar, and would always keep my big boat on the ocean.... ... hmm, ok, this is just an idea.. not possible ? not allowed to do ?

    thank you PAr I guess it really makes a lot of dfference, if you have first a small boat and get some experience... but one thing is for sure... if you have a very small, old and not comftable boat, the experience can't be the same, like if you do have a 500.000 USD boat .... but definityl it's a good way I would say to get experience what it really takes and how life will be....

    @ocean, law and passport regulations ?
    acutally, what I don't understand is how the thing works with the passport or so.. if you are european, and you buy a boat let's say in the US, and you would sail along the coast to South America, or different islands.. isn't there any law that tells you what you can do, or what you can't do ?

    I mean, I am not talking about fishing or so, but I mean a law that tells you, you are allowed to sail on that ocean, or to that coast, or island, etc ?
    this is something, I really have no clue!

    @Submarine Tom:
    thx for your nice words, it's always cool to have minds that really encourage me to do something like that, even if almost 95% of the people I was just mentioning I would love to do somehting like said... you know, in general I get the answer: you are a dreamer, nothing more.... :rolleyes:

    oh yeah, I signed to that forum almost two years ago I guess, but I wasn't a regular visotor... I was once interested in building my own cheap boat, really really cheap to make some nice boat rides on a local lake...
    I never had really time enough to start building anything, but I could see that this forum has really a lot of smart and expereinced people, and they do know what they are talkign about, and so I posted here now my crazy dream question......

    @electronic devices:
    hmm, yeah.. I was thinking you do need all the essential electronic devices on your boat, so you know all about the weather, having all things for emergency, etc. I was just thinking how all those things get the electricity, so do you need your own aggregate to get the electricity... right ?
    are these things engines, like mentioned earlier ? you run with gas, or diesel.. etc. right ?

    hmm, that makes really sense... I even don't know what it cost me to have a deep freezer on board....I mean, to run this thing all the time...etc. this is a very good info and I guess these costs are the costs you need to consider all the time..... and I assume this is the engine.... again, that runs all the time to make your life comftable.... :)

    I know that I will be confrontated with a lot of things, you ususally don't consider, especially as a bloody rookie.... but even if it will take years to (and it will) I want to get that experience... this is what makes life really interesting... well.. from my perspective of view... but I will not start doing that thing, and kill myself... well... that' woulnd't be a nice plan... lol.

    thank you all for every little info,
    I really appreciate that much,
  9. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    gonzo Senior Member

    I just took an old 25 footer from Milwaukee, down the Illinois and Mississippi rivers, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean to Colombia. I need little in the way of comfort.
  10. jtd
    Joined: Feb 2008
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    Location: mn.

    jtd Junior Member


    hmm, what is not really clear for me.. why is an engine on a sialig boat required ?

    well I'm not a sailor but my answer is : you will need it when theirs no wind
  11. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    90% of this stuff will be come apparent once he starts sailing around.
  12. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    91% just to contradict you Paul.;)
  13. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

  14. Submarine Tom

    Submarine Tom Previous Member



    Your eyes and your chart are your primary navigation tools.

    A hand held compass can be quite useful too.

    Learn how to use them and you'll never loose your way

    even when all your electronics fail (someday, when you have them).

    Take a boating course and get on the water.


  15. sighmoon
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    sighmoon Junior Member

    Hi Bernhard,

    However much money you have now, is more than enough to fulfill your crazy dream, though perhaps not with with as much grandeur or comfort as you'd like.

    Here, for example is a couple circumnavigating the globe on a 26 foot boat:

    You could buy a boat like that for about $7000. You could spend much less if you're prepared to do a bit of work on the boat.

    Electronics are unnecessary, but you can pick up a GPS for less than $100. A bit of string with a lead weight on the bottom can tell you how deep the water is, and if you know that, you can see which contour of the chart you are on, and even in thick fog, you can safely find your way into port.

    Neither do you need an engine. You will need some form of alternative propulsion though, but on a small boat, a bit of sweat may be enough:

    As for sails and rigging needing replacing, that is true, but not very often. A new mainsail for a boat like the 26 footer above would be about £400, and ought to last 10 years or so. A friend's dad's motor boat spent more than that on fuel on a 250 mile round trip.
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