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Good beginner boats?

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I'm enjoying this thread. Part of our end of year"go to the beach and talk about things" this year was, let's buy a boat now.

 

We have the long term plan, but now I'm back in a day job, (that I have a serious love/hate relationship with), the thought of being boatless for another 3-4 years is driving me to drink (well, figuratively).

 

So the idea is a small cheap interim boat that will have reasonable resale (which unfortunately rules out another proa). Minimum accomodation requirement is a double bed. Not interested in racing other than the local club cruisers using it as an excuse to go somewhere nice for a BBQ, more to get away from the phone for a day or so when possible and maybe a week or two at Xmas.

 

I like multis, but almost impossible on a budget, don't want to build, want to sail (building can come later)

 

Go.............................................

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I was pretty close to buying a tidy little Tracker in Auckland, and even put in some ridiculously low offers on a Farr 920, and thought long and hard about doing up an un-loved Ross 930..

 

I'm assuming you're a pretty seasoned sailor? Farr 920 and Ross 930 seems to be out of my price range, dang.

 

You never did mention what you ended up buying? What's this 30ft boat that can do offshore? Sounds great.

 

We have the long term plan, but now I'm back in a day job, (that I have a serious love/hate relationship with)

 

What were you doing before...? I don't understand how so many people can do all these weekday cruises/races during the day time. So envious.

 

Also, at the risk of asking a really stupid question, what all do you guys generally use your boats for? With a full-time job, I'm trying to be realistic in projecting how often I will actually use the boat. Do you race a lot? Do you do weekend cruises a lot?

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for what its worth, I loved my southerly 23. owned one a few years ago for about 3 years. nice to sail, about as low maintainance as you can get and built like a brick shithouse. a couple of different cabin layouts so have a look around. watch for rot/water ingress around the attachemnt points for the stays - there is a big timber bean than runs up the side (glassed in) but this can rot out if there has been water seeping in along the boats.

 

cabin can be a bit on the small side but comfy for 1 or 2 as long as the weather is good. used to day sail with up to 4 or so with no problems. easy to sail and gets a long good with the kite up.

 

wouldnt pay more than around the 5k mark for one - but still a good bang for buck

 

d

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Personally I like the Reactor's or Tracker's because they have a strong class association, reasonable resale and for me there was a racing aspect to the class. I ended up buying a Tracker only because it could sleep four (me, wife + 2 kids) and the V berth double was a reasonable size (I'm 6 ft tall). the reactor has a slightly smaller cabin. One thing the Tracker wasn't however was a performance vessel.

 

The Tracker was safe as houses for me to learn in and it still got us to Barrier for 10 days. At the same time I raced in the Simrad two handed series in a dedicated Tracker division. It's a good way to compare like for like.

 

My kids keep talking about what their first yacht is going to be. My daughter is quite keen on a Farr 727 (She can race/sail) but my son is more interested in a Piedy (Bit of a worry really).

 

Which ever way you look at it the ongoing maintenance costs shouldn't be underestimated for a Keeler. As a rough guide (and assuming you buy well) you ought to budget at least 20% per annum of the original buy price. If you put it on a mariner berth then add lots more.

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Thanks guys. It's really awesome to hear from people who actually owned the boats that I was considering.

 

Given my wife's reluctance to spend money on a boat, my first choices are either the Southerly 23 or the Variant due to their cheap prices, while drooling over the Reactor, Tracker, Raven, and Farr 727.

 

There seems to be a couple of the Southerly for about 2-4k, and a Variant for around the same price. No clue on their conditions, but if they're in decent conditions, those are what I'd probably get I think. I figure, go for cheap with good resale value, and then once I learn the ropes, I'll upgrade.

 

If I can get a Reactor, Tracker, Raven, or Farr 727 for under 10k that's in good condition, I'd probably jump on it. I'll probably downgrade my car and use the money from that to help purchase the boat.

 

I've heard 10% maintenance cost. 20% is a bit scary, but I guess if it's a $5k boat, that's not too bad. I plan on mooring (I'm assuming this is okay...?) instead of berthing, and I think I can get one for $75-100/month, which isn't bad.

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I reckon the cheaper you go the higher the % on maintenance you will spend. Think of it like this - a $15k Tracker in good nick at 10-20% maintenance is $1.5-$3k per year - probably about right. If you buy one in average nick for $10k you will still spend the same $1.5-$3k per year but the % is higher. In fact you are probably going to be toward the higher end of the range as a boat in average condition will require more maintenance.

 

Simple rule - buy the one in the best condition you can afford, and leave something for contingencies.

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We have the long term plan, but now I'm back in a day job, (that I have a serious love/hate relationship with)

 

What were you doing before...?

 

Long story short. Started selling real estate in 1987, by 1995 had enough to retire and go cruising with the family in the Caribbean, Mexico and Central AMerica for 10 years. Came back coz Mum got sick. Wife bought dress shop. I bought Crew.org.nz. Hoped to make a living from it, came very close to doing so then recession happened. Shop not doing as well, Crew lost some income. Back to peddling houses. Bloody tough last couple of years, but nice little upswing last few months. Shop also recovering nicely. Still have enough in real Estate invested that by the time kids are grown we will be able to go again, but will stick out the job a few more years anyway, hence need for interim boat

Apologies to thise who have heard it before.

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Farrari, good to hear you can sleep on a Tracker, I'm 6'1" and have been spoilt by the big cats.

 

Probably looking to spend a bit more, probably somewhere above 30k depending on how the market goes between now and spring.

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I've heard 10% maintenance cost. 20% is a bit scary, but I guess if it's a $5k boat, that's not too bad. I plan on mooring (I'm assuming this is okay...?) instead of berthing, and I think I can get one for $75-100/month, which isn't bad.

 

The cheaper the original price, the higher the %. 10% on a $100K boat pays for good upkeep but 10% on a $5K boat doesn't go far.

 

Here's an incomplete list of essential maintenance items

 

    Antifoul every 12- 18 months - $400 + haul out plus hardstand + misc

    Zinc annodes every 2 years

    Flares every 2.5 years - they are always 6 monts old when you buy them

    Motor maintenance - even if it has an outboard you will need to get it serviced

 

And then there is the never ending list of things the break or stop working.

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Probably looking to spend a bit more, probably somewhere above 30k depending on how the market goes between now and spring.

 

Geez Squid, you will be into purse luxury by comparison to a Tracker or Reactor with that kind of money, especially in this market. You could be looking at a Marauder, a Davidson 28 or even a cheap Chico 30 for that kind of money.

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