Hey to all,,,I will retire end of year,,and start to live my dream,,of Sailing all over the pacific...I will go to alaska in summer,,and tahiti new zeland hawaii,etc, winter,,,maybe even San Diego??I have read about 20 books on buying "your first boat",,but i figure it is best to go to the source...So,,, if anyone has an opinion on the best boat for this future sailor,,i would like to hear it...I have it narrowed down to five,,here they are,,,in no order,,Tayana,,,Jeanneau,,Cabo Rico,,,wauquiez,,,island packet....I will get a 36-38 ft,,with all the toys for safety,,,and will go to sailing school for two weeks,,after that i will spend the first year in the san diego area learning to sail,,then all over the pacific...any advice will be helpfull,,,your friend David

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Hey David,

Congratulations on your upcomming retirement!

Of your list I personally like the Tayana 37. A good sturdy boat and quite a few have made circumnavigations. Many well set up Tayana's can be found for under 100k.

Reading as much as you can as well as classes is great. In addition, if you live near a yacht club, many have races on weekends. You might go down and ask around if anyone needs novice crew. It's pretty common to be brought aboard and a great way to learn quick.

Best of luck!
Consider ease of maintenance. Look at engine access on anything you consider purchasing. Can you easily see and touch the oil filter? Can you get both hands on the stuffing box? What do you have to take apart to tighten the rudder packing? Is there room for a below deck autopilot?

The Tayana is a well built boat that sails well. The IP's and Cabo Rico's are both staunchly built boats. The Wauquiez boats have an excellent reputation and a devoted following. While I do like Jeanneau's, especially the amenities, personally they would be at the bottom of the list you provided.

But all things considered, ease of access could tilt that list in anyones favor.


The first thing I learned about choosing a boat is that, every one is a compromise. We sail a 1991 Jeanneau 40 and we're quite happy with it. I did alot of work (changes and outfitting) to make into what I thought a comfortable blue water cruiser should be. We've been liveaboards now for about 18 months. While I don't think I buy a newer one, I've been quite impressed with mine. Tayana, Cabo's and Wauquiez all build good boats. The IP's don't do it for me. In fact most all of the new production boats don't excite me much. Appears too much quality has been sacrificed. Best of luck to you.
As for boats, from your list //Wauquiez,Cabo Rico,Tayana.
If this is your first boat ,how much sailing have you done? For the kind of offshore sailing that you are talking about 2 weeks of courses & a year of coastal work would not get it for me. Go to the yacht club and see about crewing on some offshore races, Get as much overnight offshore EXP. as you can, running around the bouys is fun,but offshore at night after 5 or 6, 24 hours is when it gets interesting!!!!!!
sail fast & live slow
First of all,,i want to thank every one who took time to reply...My exp. in sailing is none,,not one minute,,thus the sailing school,,all i know is that i wanted a sail boat since i was 3 ft. tall as the song goes...I will have the rest of my life to become a good sailor,, Other sailors i have talked to also liked the 37' tayana,,they have a club on the west coast,,i will join and sail with after the school,, again thank you all and i will keep in touch,,this is a good sailing site,,,your friend david
You may get something from reading articles 1 and 5 on my webpage.......Mandalay Cruising Guide.


Congratulations the best advice I might be able to give would be to look for a position where you can be crew, spend a week or two on board at sea and you will quickly find what aspects you like and dont like.
Try a google-search of "sailboat crews",it'll pull up sites of owners/captains who are looking for help ,all different experiance levels.Look for the situation that best fits your needs,time out,destinations.Read good books on sailing,et.Chapmans...Annopolis book of sailing(spelling)Educate yourself,learn from experianced sailors,hands on training is the best!
Boat?I would start out with a 35 footer,easier to handle,fees are lower,for instance after 35 ft.fees double when you enter the Bahamas.

When shopping for a boat,look for a mast thats mounted on the keel,look for bulkheads that are fiberglassed to the hull.Engine easily servicable?

Study up on the different hull shapes and how they react,heeling,pounding,shape of the keel-Do your homework on this one and you'll find a better match for the type of sailing you'll be doing.
Deep-draft for ocean passages or something more suitable for Florida Keys?

Some boats are put together well,others are made for entertaining dockside,try to learn the difference.

Make sure you get a in depth survey!

...list goes on and on
Good luck with your retirement,
Straight Wakes
Thank-you Mike,,,I won't have to worry to much about the bahamas,,i will sail the pacific,,to many storms around florida,,and besides i love to go to alaska in the summer,,have been doing it for 8 years in the moterhome...Your advice is good advice and i will print it off to put it in my file box,,,I read "why your first boat should be fiberglass",,I like the fiberglass hull for maint.. someone told me to be carefull,,, after the first gas scare around 76-78,,when the hulls were 3 in. thick,,they started to make them 1 inch thick due do coast...but for the first time sailboat it is the best to learn with,,do you agree??Also i went to the web-site "yachts for sale" and all the Tayana's i found were 1975-1988,,don't they make new Tayana's anymore,,I know they were made in ca...well i bothered you enough,,, talk to you later,,,your friend David
tayana Boats For Sale is the sight you seek. Yes there newer Tayana's.

Yachtworld is a great resource when buying a used boat


If you expect to be sailing offshore, ease of maintenance can become one of the most critical issues you may face. Proper seamanship dictates that you perform your boat maintenance before heading out to sea, but at some point, an engine or some other critical part may let you down while at sea. Knowing how to either fix the problem or work around it is critical, but it is even more critical that you are able to do it or get to the problem while at sea.

Those fuel filters may be easy to get to while still at the dock, but how will they be when sloshing around in 10' rollers? Those spare sails only fit in one very small out of the way place? Not good while on a lee shore. Can you actually fit and use the emergency tiller while at sea in a storm? Ease of use an maintenance will become a factor on any boat you choose, especially when doing the type of sailing you speak of.

I personally had a difficult time on a Tayana 37 while going downwind in large seas. The corkscrew motion for several days on end was tough to handle. I did the same conditions in a Mariah 31 (stern is similar to Crealock) and there was no corkscrew motion. Having delivered and sailed many different sizes and types of sailboats, I have come to prefer the motion of catamarans the most, followed by full keel heavy monos.

It would be best to bum as many rides as you can at the marinas before you pick your first boat so that you have some idea as to how the different types feel to handle, sail, and maintain.

Phew! Good luck.


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