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Saturday, March 2, 2019

The simple sailboats



I’ve got time on my hands while recovering. One of the things I’ve been doing is watching a lot of YouTube videos. Since one of my interests is sailing I’ve been watching a lot of sailing channels. It’s not all bikinis on the beach videos either. The vast majority of them have been of sailors doing repairs on their boats.

It’s said that sailing is boat repair in exotic locations. All too often, that’s the truth of it. Boat repairs are one of the biggest expenses for the sailors. There are some beautiful boats out there that I could not afford to own, even if they were given to me. For example, one couple is sailing around in a nice 54 foot sailboat with all the amenities. This is a boat worth about $600,000. The owners estimated that yearly repairs ran then around $60,000.

That might seem like an awful lot of money, and it is. However, it’s not surprising. A nice boat like that has power everything: winches, windlasses, air conditioners, generators, solar panels, and every appliance anyone could ever desire. The problem is all that machinery is in a harsh environment of salt water and vibration.

One of the attractions of sailboats is that if an area starts to feel sketchy all one has to do is raise the anchor and sail somewhere else. That’s all well and good -unless your boat is on the hard in some third world country while repairs are underway.

One couple was stuck in just such a boatyard recently while waiting for parts. They found the boatyard in the middle of a land dispute involving mercenaries, firearms, and a bulldozer destroying buildings. The couple grabbed a couple of backpacks and paddled their dinghy across the bay to safety. Their boat is still stuck in the yard. Who knows when or even if they’ll be able to launch it again.

There’s something to be said for simple boats that can be fixed quickly and on the cheap. If you can’t do emergency repairs with duct tape, zip times and WD-40, maybe it’s too complicated.

-Sixbears

14 comments:

  1. I can understand not wanting to get caught up in a crazy dispute over something that was no concern of mine. Losing access to your boat would be the worse part, for sure.

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    1. It's tough because you lose your transportation, your home, and your dream.

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  2. Simple boats and simple cars. My 20yo Hilux/Tacoma is held together by zip ties, duct and gaffer tape. Got years left in it now.

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    1. My dad had one of those. It was a mistake for him to trade it in. Best truck he ever had.

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  3. I'm drawn to the same video channels. Maybe it's a mental "get away". SV Seeker, a man building a large steel Junk inn Tulsa is one of my favorites.

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    1. Yes, it's a mental get away for me right now, but it's also neat to see other places I plan on going to.

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  4. Age and the size of boat must also be factored. Anything over thirty feet , and you're looking at ground tackle entirely too heavy to manually lift.
    We are certainly glad we had our sailing days when we were n our fourties and fifties. Tho I might still be inclined at sixty five to still sail...she is not. Can't say I blame her either.
    Women in general want a bigger boat , so that they might take along the whole house. Guys want bigger for their ego...
    Truth is a small boat will always be tethered to land being nearby. One cannot provision for long term on a small craft , especially drinking water !
    Soon you'll be unable to rig even the Oday. Even tho its stick is fairly light ...
    The one thing which we found common with sailing couple's...they all wished that they had done it earlier in life. When they still were young and strong enough for the sailing life.
    Thus is why you'll see most older folks driving around in a stink pot of some sort.
    Land one or sea going...

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    1. My lovely wife thinks a 23 foot boat is big. :) However, she had no desire to cross oceans so something less than 30 is big enough. As I get older, I'm going to have make more use of levers and winches.

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  5. I guess the KISS method is the best, just "Keep It Simple, Stupid". That goes for boats, too.

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  6. Duct tape can fix just about anything.

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    1. It's like "The Force." It has a light side and a dark side and binds the universe together.

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  7. Per my dad...A boat is a hole in the water into which you pour money. And he had a few in his lifetime. - Momlady

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    1. True enough. There's also the saying "Boat Buck." Each BB is $1000.

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