It’s the Amount of Money the Previous Owner Poured Into Her!
Our boat search has taken some interesting twists and turns in the course of the year and we’d like to think that we’ve come out on the other end only a bit older but a lot wiser for it. We’ve read stacks upon stacks of books, researched way too many hours online, yet we know this can only get you so far. In order to pass this gleaned knowledge off to others, we’ve created a few new pages of links and recommended reading for those interested (these should interest both the sailors and land lubbers!).
At the end of the day however, this literature has simply informed us enough to be able to ask good questions of sailors more experienced than ourselves. It’s an interesting view of experience, though. The experience that is most valuable for us in this surveying phase is not how many storms one has weathered or how many oceans one has crossed, but rather the ability to spot a money trap. It’s how many boats has one bought and how many dollars and years have gone down the drain in the process.
What we’ve come away with is something different from what we first envisioned in our romantic view of the perfect boat. Given the fact that we don’t have unlimited funds and we don’t have unlimited time to tinker on the hard, we’ve decided to follow these guidelines:
– Keep it small: small boats cost less initially, and repairs and replacement parts will be cheaper down the road
– Keep it simple: the quantity and complexity of gadgets on the boat are directly proportional to the time and money you will spend fixing them, and therefore indirectly proportional to the time spent sailing
– Keep it realistic: don’t buy a ‘project’ boat; sailing a boat is cheap, fixing up a boat is very expensive