Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Craigslist boats

I love Craigslist. It has replaced ebay for me and I have had a lot of success on it buying, selling and even taking advantage of arbitrage. Naturally I have been keeping up with boats for sale on Craigslist. Every morning I check up on the local listings and will look all around Florida every once and a while. Some people on the cruising forums suggest that if a person is selling on Craigslist, they are probably hiding something or it will be a problem. I disagree, and there are ways to handle it in the first place. Of course, any boat I seriously look at will be surveyed stem to stern by a professional before I put a dime on it. If the Craigslist seller refuses to allow a survey, then I know I should move on.

That being said, here are a few boats out there on Craigslist that I am keeping bookmarked. This first one is a 1981 Crocker 33' that is custom built for $20,000:

Custom Crocker Cutter: Will go anywhere you want >>> 1981-Solid built fiberglass cruising cutter 16,000 lbs. displacement. 36' LOA w/o boomkin and bowsprit, 4.5' Shallow draft for the Carribean waters yet able to go off shore.....if you are! Beam 11.8', good cruising mahogany interior with full galley and a true nav station. The iron jenny is a 24hp. Westerbeke diesel w/100hrs. total time. If you are familiar with West Sail and a Bristol Channel Cutter then you can picture The Crocker Cutter. It is Built as solid or more so than the West Sail and the wine glass hull resembles the Bristol Channel Cutter, but larger inside and out and uses the same rig! Core sample of the hull are 1 7/8" solid hand laid fiberglass and epoxy! This boat has over $100k in materials alone and thats in the 1980's dollars. Also comes with ground tackle and many spares. Currently stored as seen under shelter which is included. Solid Glass Hull-no wood in hull. call for more details.

Boat description makes it seem just like what I'm looking for. It's on the hard too so it would be easy to look at all around. Definitely going to check this one out.

This next one looks real good, and there is a separate ad it links to with more pictures. Everything on it looks great, I'm just curious about the displacement and how that centerboard keel handles. I need to look up centerboards more. There are some Pearson 35's I've seen for sale with centerboards and I've been warry. Can anyone chime in with some advice? I guess my question would be how the centerboard models handle differently than deep full keels.

This boat is an able cruiser sailed from Nova Scotia to Puerto Rico. Ted Brewer design, Cutter Rigged with Center Board Draft (Dn 6'6" Up 2' 10"), Year 1983, Beam 10' 8", Tabernacle Mast with mast steps, Bowsprit, Wheel Steering, Bottom Painted 3/2009. Low price to sell fast, an excellent deal at $14,500.

Equipment: Upgraded Yanmar GM3 Diesel Engine 1993 low hours; New Transmission 1994; New Stainless Steel Rigging; New Prop 3 Blade 3.2009; 3 Anchors-Bruce, Plow, & Yachtsman; New Sail Covers; New Jib; Autopilot; 3 Burner Propane Stove; Propane Refrigerator; Cabin Heater; 3 Bilge Pumps and many extra engine parts.

More Pictures are available at: www.sailboatlistings.com/view/12415
Here is another centerboard model going for dirt cheap right now. It looks real nice so I wonder what the catch is. It looks a little light, but possibly sea-worthy:

THIS FINE CRUISING SAILBOAT MUST BE SOLD NOW TO HIGHEST BIDDER!!! Reserve is $5,000. / "Buy now" is $10.000. Nimble 30 sailboat: shoal draft /centerboard, double ended cruising sloop. Very well built, green hull with tankbark sails

Yanmar 18 hp diesel, large fuel & water tanks. Roller furling genoa. 7 bronze opening portholes, 3 hatches, CQR anchor with bow roller and anchor locker. Head with holding tank, shower. Full headroom. Full galley with pressure and manual water, filters, 3 water tanks, 4 burner propane range with oven and good stowage. Auto pilot, depth finder, new VHF, and many recent upgrades and improvements. Much more equipment and features, including hand carved teak dolphin figureheads on the bow!

30 Nimbles often sell in the $40,s... this is a greaty opportunity to get a great little cruising boat for a fraction of the usual price!
This boat has been well loved, but unfortunately must be sold immediately!!!
Another banging deal here. Lots of recent major refitting, good price, good looking sea worthy boat.

1972 Rawson sailboat, just back from a cruise and ready to go...
This year, she had:
new standing rigging, built by Mack Sails (1/09)
bottom paint (1/09)
new head & plumbing (1/09)
new exhaust hose (1/09)
new starter & house batteries (1/09)

Comes equipped with:
AirX wind generator, still under warranty
Simrad 30 autopilot, tiller steering
Raymarine depth sounder
Propane stove, oven
Revere Offshore Liferaft (6 person, new in 2007)
Vetus 33HP diesel, runs strong
Plenty of storage, roomy liveaboard

She has a double spreader rig with removable inner forestay and running backstays for a Cutter Rig, if you choose
All sails are in good condition
This is a sturdy, overbuilt fiberglass offshore sailboat with a cut away forefoot full keel 5'draft.

Friday, March 20, 2009


Debt Free Day!!!

TODAY IS THE DAY! I have been reaching for this day for a couple of years now. I have no more credit card debt to my name. Now its all savings and the lessons I learned to get myself out of this will last me a lifetime.

Feels like a huge weight off my shoulders and the day just seems brighter. Don't have much time to write right now, but I just wanted to commemorate today with a post.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Omatakos’ 16 Commandments for the Frugal Sailor

"Money's purpose isn't to buy you things, it's to buy you time away from making money..."

Boy I wish I heard that piece of wisdom a few years ago.

With my limited budget I need to make every dollar I save for the trip to go a long way. I was browsing the Sailnet forums today and came across this good list of frugal tips while cruising. A lot of people can't fathom cruisng without a six figure+ cruising kitty. I'm a pretty earthy guy when I need to be, so most of these wouldn't bust my comfort zone. These are all discussed in my books but this guy put them in a nice little list for me:

  • Save your electricity, don't run anything unless you must (even nav lights ). Don't run instruments or gear you don't need at the time.
  • Save your water, don't use any fresh unless you must (definitely don't flush the head with it ).
  • Save your fuel, don't run your engine unless you have to. Sail even if it's at 2 knots.
  • Eat ALL the fish you catch even if it means eating the same meal 3 days in a row.
  • Take your sails down in a storm, don't risk damage.
  • Scrub the bottom by hand regularly if it needs it.
  • Row the dink ashore unless you really need an outboard to run (far, wind, current).
  • Convert you gas barbie. Burn driftwood, not bought fuel. Cook on it often, it's free.
  • Buy rechargable batteries and a cheap solar charger (AA, AAA, etc).
  • Buy lots when you find bargains, especially groceries. Learn to enjoy pasta if you don't already.
  • When you bake your own bread do as many loaves as you can manage at one time (costs money to heat the oven from cold).
  • Take only what you will consume when you visit other boats (but try not to be a mooch ). Don't be embarrased to take your "excess" stuff home again.
  • Try and charge strangers for knowledge/assistance/labour. Let them know up front.
  • Have boat clothes and shore clothes, don't wear out your good stuff while you're at sea.
  • Don't pay Baksheesh (bribes) to anyone. Let them know up front too. If they won't help you without a bribe, find someone else.
  • Trade if you can, don't always just buy.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


I reaaaaaaallly like this boat. It is a 1977 Gilden Hind Terry Erskine 31' located in Green Cove Springs, the same as the Alberg. Very close to me, and it looks pretty solid. It is a wee bit expensive, but not out of range and looks to need minimal upgrades. I found a lot of good info about the design and there a lot of positives. This boat in particular is name Frodo, and this appeals to me being a Lord of the Rings nerd and all :) I love the overall look of it too.


"NEW PRICE Fantastic minicruiser, reported to be a blue water go anywhere boat. Reported by owner to be excellent condition. Owner has replaced alternator, has spun fuel and is having bottom painted. Has steel plate bildge keels, monitor self steering wind vane, windless,sails reported excellent, Famet rollerfurling, Auto pilot,GPS, Nexus wind speed, depth, remote control cockpit, was a liveaboard came up from the Caribbean in 02. Well cared for.!!!!!!!!!!!Hurry won't last!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Erick's Comments: Obviously I highlighted the key words that let me know this boat is worth a thorough investigation. Also came from the Caribbean, the area I plan to cruise first off with this boat.


Builder: Golden Hind Designer: Maurice Griffins


LOA: 31' Beam: 9 Displacement: 12000
Draft: 3'8" Ballast: 4100


Engine(s): Lister-Petter Engine(s) HP: 20 Cruising Speed: 5


Fuel: 20 Water: 60 Holding: yes

Comments: Good numbers. Nice, shallow draft. Decent storage.

Large V berth and storage forward, head, settee, table, galley, nav station.Attractive teak interior, lots of storage every where!Great pocket cruiser, go anywhere.

Sink, manuel water, alcohol stove, icebox, storage!!!

VHF, autopilot, windvane, depth, knotmeter, stereo,GPS

3 new deep cycle batteries, solar panels, 12 volt

3 anchors, twin anchor rollers, Famet roller furling, fenders, off shore life jackets,Hi speed manuel windless, extra Jerry cans, lines, chain, Sails: Main, jib, new zincs, primary 2 speed Anderson self tailing winches,

Curtains, extra tiller, clock, Barometer, 2 whale gusher pumps, 1 electric bilge pump, wind instrument package, Whisker pole, gin pole. dodger, sun fly. 108 amp alternator, Spares!!! Great boat hurry won't last!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Erick's Comments: Everything looks great. Lots of good equipment, interested to see the condition of it all. Looks set up for the kind of use I have in mind. Would probably need a bit of upgrading, but survey would see exactly what.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

1965 Alberg 35

Since I began learning about sailboats, Albergs have been a name that pops up a lot for traditional off-shore cruisers. This is a 1965 Alberg 35 for only $17,900. It is close and near where I grew up on the St. Johns River.

They talk about these boats here: cruisersforum.com. Some people say good things, some say bad; but mostly along party lines of those who don't like traditional cruisers and those that do. Normal problems with older fiberglass boats that a survey would have to sniff out. Living space is a bit narrow; but that helps off-shore. I'd have to check it out and with it being close, I might go give it a look soon. The ad is short:

Description Famous older vessel has been around the world, needs to be loved and brought back, mostly paint and cleaning, but has a new engine , sails reported serviceable, sleeps 2 in the fore peak, and 2 on the main salon settees.Has a head, stove, sink. ice box, dinghy. Make OFFERS must sell !

Forepeak then sink and head. Main salon has galley and 2 berths or settees

Galley Stove, icebox, sink

Electronics Autopilot, depth, VHF

Electrical 110, 12 volt

Deck and Hull Tiller, Bimini, davits, swim ladder, search light

Classic boat needs the engine cover refitted because of new engine, sails reported serviceable, dinghy. Vessel sold as is BEST OFFER, !!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

1969 Cheoy Lee Luders 36'

This is the first of a few posts where I will profile some boats that I like. These are from internet searches as I demonstrated in the last post. I filtered through the big list of search results to find those that are off-shore, blue-water boats that can handle anything and take me anywhere. It also needs to be in decent shape so I don't have to spend more than 100% of the purchase price on re-fitting it. I cross checked each of these boat manufacturers with other references and here I will summarize how I feel about them. I'll make some sort of rating matrix for all of the boats once I profile a few; because I'm a nerd :)

Today I am profiling a 1968 Cheoy Lee Luders 36' yacht. Luders are on my list of sea worthy boats at 33' and above. The boat listing profiles it well, so this will be an easy one:

Boat Details

Hull Material:
Beam :
Max Draft: 5'3"
Dry Weight: 15000
Horsepower (total):
Fuel Tank 40
Length at Waterline : 25
Holding Tank Yes
Water Tank
Engine Hours 1700

Erick's Comments: All of the numbers look good. Heavy boat, able to take a beating. I have yet to work out the ratios that I am looking for, but that 15,000 pound weight is a positive. Traditional style cruising numbers. Good storage for water and fuel. Big enough engine.

Description A solidly built boat, there have been numerous Cheoy Lee's that have circumnavigated. The knowledgeable and experienced owner has kept the vessel in a seaworthy condition. This is an opportunity to own a well-built vessel that is affordable and durable. There are no blisters or leaks in the deck, and the deck has no soft spots.

Erick's Comments: Hell yeah can't beat that. I just wonder what a good survey would find.
The traditional layout of this vessel has proven to be the basis for many classic boats. The forward cabin accommodates two adults on the V berth. The main salon area can accommodate two adults on the port berths, after converting the dinette to a double berth, and the starboard side can sleep two, one on the settee and one on the pilot berth. The head and shower are to port, between the forward cabin and the salon.
Sleeps 2 adults in V berth
Sleeps 2 on convertable dinette
Sleeps 1 on settee
Sleeps 1 on pilot berth
Head and shower forward, behind fwd cabin

Erick's comments: The accommodations are just as I would want. V-berth is a must, 2 settees is a must, and a pilot berth is a big plus. The v-berth would be used as the main bed while at anchor or dock. At sea it will be used as storage. The motion in the peak of the boat is a little too much at sea to have a really solid sleep. The settees will be used as sea berths. I reckon I could use a pilot berth as possible surf board storage. Plenty of room for guests at anchor or for a few people at sea.

Galley The galley consists of an icebox that has been refrigerated with a Sea Frost system (2003), a Princess propane stove (2003), a sink with hot and cold water, and lockers for storage.
Sea Frost refrigeration - 2003
Princess 3 burner propane stove - 2003
Hot/cold water
Hot water heater
Trident solenoid control

Erick's comments: Looks good. Newer equipment, big plus. A 3 burner propane stove is what I am looking for, not alcohol. I could probably deal with 2 burners though. Hot/cold water is great for when I live-aboard, but I might not have it while at sea due to power issues...but that would be decided well into the future. Another big plus is that the sink is near the center line, that way it will drain at all angles. A lot of boats lack that feature.

Apelco VXL 5110 VHF
Standard Horizon Speed Log
Standard Horizon Depth sounder
Simrad Autopilot - 2003
Bilge alarm

Erick's Comments: looks good here. I am leaning towards wanting a wind vane as my primary auto pilot. But if a boat comes with an electric auto pilot, I will use a wind vane as a backup.

Electrical The electrical systems aboard are simple and functional. There is a 12 volt system for the boat while underway, as well as 110 volt shorepower for dockside.
90 A H/O Balmar alternator - 2000
Shore Charger - 2000
4 X 6 v batteries in series - 2006
30 Amp shore power umbilical
Link 20 battery monitor

Erick's Comments: Looks powerful, more so than I had intended on at sea. Need to research what it would take to charge this puppy with solar panels and maybe a wind generator.

Deck and Hull The deck plan is simple and enhances the classic and traditional lines. The aft cockpit gives one a complete perspective of the boat, and makes for easy control. The wide deck makes going forward easy, and the lifelines and stanchions are high enough to ensure one's safety. There are two pipes for ground tackle at the bow, as well as two cleats. There are a two anchors on the bow, a Bruce and a Fortress. There is a third anchor as backup.

The genoa is on a Profurl furling system, which makes for easy handling of the headsail. The furling line runs to the cockpit on the starboard side. The main is slab reefed, and the mainsail cover was new is 2005. The Bimini was new in 2005, and the dodger was replaced in 2006.

The spars are aluminum, and are rigged with Sta-Lok terminals. The mast is stepped. There are 4 winches in the cockpit, and the mainsheet purchase is behind the helmsman. There is a swim ladder off the stern, and an outboard mount off the port pushpit. Ventilation is provided via three dorades, one in the stern and two on the deck, one on either side of the mast.
New bimini/dodger
New main cover
Slab reefed main
Profurl furler
Swim ladder
3 anchors-Fortress, Claw and Danforth
Four Barient winches in cockpit
3 Dorades
Stepped mast
Sta-Lok terminals
Deck-stepped mast

Erick's Comments: Loaded with newer gear. Everything seems ready for a cruise. Will need minimal refitting, but a survey will tell all. All in all I like this boat a lot. It looks clean, well kept, and sea worthy. It's also on the large end of my range at 36 feet, plenty to carry surfboards. The immediate con's of this boat are that it is on the very high end of my boat budget. They are asking $24,900; but maybe I could haggle them down. I wouldn't mind paying that much for a boat that wouldn't need too much refitting. Another con is that it is in South Carolina, but that isn't nearly as far as some of the boats. That wouldn't be too hard of a first long sail to get it here, especially because I wouldn't have to go around the Outer Banks, a very dangerous passage. This boat ranks high in my book.

Friday, March 6, 2009

A little bit of this, some of that...

Since my fishing excursion my life has become a little routine once again. These past few months have been difficult on me. Day in and day out I try to find another way to save money in my normal routine in order to reach my magical goal: no more credit card debt. I have had to sacrifice many nights out, slowed down my hobbies such as beer brewing, driven less, been a little cheap on gifts (and suffered the regret of it), and all sorts of other things. Finally the moment is upon me where I can finally stop paying someone else and I can begin to pay myself. With today's paycheck, I think I will be in the position to pay off the remaining balance on my 0% interest card carrying the remainder of my bad debt. I still have to deposit some rent checks, pay bills, and have everything clear before I can press the "Submit Payment" button. Once the numbers clear, I hope to see something that will allow me to pay it off with enough savings to get me by till next paycheck (plus emergency fundage). I had a 1 year (0% interest for 1 year) goal to pay off this balance, and the end of this month marks that year. WOOHHOO!

So everything after that is padding the coffers for Erick's Boat! Whatever the name of it will be. I have yet to decide if I will name the boat something, or keep its original name. It is said to be bad luck to change a boats name, but most agree that it can be done with the proper ceremonies. Either way, I think that will be decided once I find the right boat.

Speaking of which, I have not been too sedentary in the dream chasing (well, sacrificing a lot of my previous lifestyle to save isn't being too sedentary, but it isn't the same). I have been actively perusing the world wide interwebs for sailboats that fit my criteria. I have been keeping up with
Yacht World boat search for the most part because it seems to return the results of all the other big search sites, plus many more. When searching Yacht World or any of the other sites, I put in search critera as follows:

Boat type - Cruiser (try to weed out the racing boats)

Length - 30 to 40 feet
Price - $15,000 to $25,000
Location - Southeat Region (Seeing whats available in the region, but I pay more attention to Florida boats)

All of the ads are different and not all of them will show up with refined searches, so I have to keep it general. I use the list I had made in
this previous post to go by. There are many brands that are very popular models, but most are coastal cruisers that do not fit the off-shore criteria I am seeking. These brands include Hunter, Catalina, O'Day, C&C, Morgan Out Island, Columbia and so on. Many of those brands have larger boats that are perfectly fine for off-shore cruising, but not within my price range. When I search yacht world under the criteria above I get 194 results. So there are a lot of boats out there in my range, however, there are only about 10 of those that really fit the characteristics I need. I'll start posting those in the next post.