Is It a Need or a Want?

A fundamental fact is that, even if you are rich, you can’t have it all in an offshore voyaging boat and that goes double for the rest of us with more modest means. So the most important step in selecting a boat that will be successful for you is to identify the things that you really need. In this chapter I give you an easy to use and apply test to do just that.

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Buying a Cruising Boat—Five Tips for The Half-Assed Option

When researching buying a cruising boat, we are deluged with information on all the gear she must have and how perfect she must be before we can go cruising. But is that really true? How about buying an old and tired boat and just getting out there? John tells his story of going cruising in a half-assed boat…and having one of the best times in his life. Will this work for you? He shares tips on how to decide.

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Are Refits Worth It?

It seems like a logical way to own a good offshore sailboat. Buy an older and a bit rundown but fundamentally decent boat and refit it. But does it really work? To explore that important question, I have a true story to tell you.

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Learn From The Designers

One of the saddest things that can happen to a cruiser is buying a fundamentally bad boat, and there are plenty of those out there to tempt the uninformed. Here’s how to make sure that the boat you buy is well designed.

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8 Tips For a Good Voyaging Boat Interior Arrangement

Sadly, most boats, both power and sail, have interior arrangements that are designed to look good at a boat show, not work well offshore or when living aboard for extended periods while voyaging. Here we discuss, based on some 20 years of living aboard and voyaging, eight things to look for as you shop for a boat.

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Cockpits—Part 1, Safe and Seamanlike

These days there seems to be an endless fascination with yacht (both motor and sail) cockpit amenities, but we must never lose sight of a cockpit’s primary function: to be the command and control centre of a vehicle that operates in a potentially hostile environment.

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Cockpits—Part 2, Visibility and Ergonomics

There are few areas on any boat that are used for more diverse tasks than an offshore sailboat cockpit. Everything from lounging on a quiet day at anchor to handling a fast-moving emergency at sea with a bunch of sail up…in the black dark…in fog…with a ship bearing down on us.

Given that, picking a boat with a good cockpit layout is one of the most important parts of boat selection. Let’s look at what really matters.

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