First Boat

John1000

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29 Jan 2005
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Hi this is my first foray into the boating world.

My wife and I would like to buy a boat for accommodation, and basic trips.

I have no experience and would do a couple of courses ( on board tuition and a VHF course)
I have some questions which I hope someone would be able to help. Have looked at some brokerages and the boat show to get some idea of what is available.
Saw a Chapperal but noticed everything was damp and remembered someone saying US boats are not as well built as UK and suffer condensation?? Also informed Sealine S24 is a good buy?? ( 4 years old )
2. Inexpensive Marina for a 24ft boat with easy navigation if one exist
3. Anyone recommend a reputable source to buy a boat?
4. Diesel is cheaper than petrol but is it worth the extra considering the price is twice as much. Thanks.
 

studgies

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the S24 would be an ideal first boat, small enough to be easy to handle but tough enough for the rough stuff. I would always go for deisel but that is mainly due to bad experiences with petrol boats never wanting to start and costing the earth to run!

A lot depends on where you plan to keep the boat and how far you want to take it, some poeple are happy to potter around in very local waters others quickly feel the need to travel!
 

Riggy

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Qoute[Saw a Chapperal but noticed everything was damp and remembered someone saying US boats are not as well built as UK and suffer condensation?? ]

It was obviously not looked after very well.
I have a Chaparral 260 Signature and have never suffered from damp problems. Any boat will suffer a damp problem if not kept dehumidified/aired etc during winter months.
As for build quality, the American boats probably on average have a better build quality because the buggers over there are so demanding.
Any boat you go for (in my humble opinion) will only satisfy 90% plus of your needs, unless you have oodles of dosh to lay out.
As 'Studgies' says, where are you thinking of keeping it, as there are very few 'inexpensive' marina's south of somewhere like the Isle if Islay!!
Sealine I have no experience of but have not heard any or many negatives about them.
Go for diesel even if the 'red' goes up. Much safer and more reliable......why do you think all yachts are fitted with diesel engines?
 

Vicki

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It's very hard to know which boat to go for when there are so many appealing options. It's very exciting, buying a first boat but so much homework involved first!

How do American boats compare with British boats on UK water? I've heard that the build quality of American boats are more suited to calmer waters, ie creeks and the like. That said, they seem very spacious and quite luxurious...
 

Riggy

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[ QUOTE ]
It's very hard to know which boat to go for when there are so many appealing options. It's very exciting, buying a first boat but so much homework involved first!

How do American boats compare with British boats on UK water? I've heard that the build quality of American boats are more suited to calmer waters, ie creeks and the like. That said, they seem very spacious and quite luxurious...

[/ QUOTE ]

As with my last post...my Chaparral goes out in all sorts of weather, high winds and heavyy swells lots of slop and chop and she handles it all without problem...a very competent and 'sea-worthy'...not just 'lake-worthy' boat. By the way...have you ever seen some of the weather they encounter up on the Great Lakes??
 

John1000

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Thanks
Nearest coast is Bristol channel which can be rough and very tidal.

So thinking anywhere on the South coast to potter to start with, and some limited coastal work.

Sealine to small to travel any further with my experience.
 

Riggy

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Probably just as quick to come down to Devon or Cornwall as going down to S'otn/Prtsmouth etc, to moor your boat and get some experience. Lot quieter and calmer down here with much less water traffic. Bristol Chanel I believe is HUGELY tidal (other forumites correct me if I'm wrong) and probably not a good place to learn unless you have a really experienced tutor/boaty-friend.
 

BrendanS

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The comment that US boats are built for calm lake conditions is ballderdash. Ill informed comments by ill informed people on the whole (not a comment on this thread, just the general trend), who understand nothing of boating conditions in the US, and probably perpetuated by people who have a vested interest in selling boats of other provenance

I've a US built boat which goes everywhere in all sorts of conditions. As a result of seeing how well it handles those conditions, 2 other members of the club I belong to have bought the same boat - both keen boaters, with lots of experience, one of them was a keen ribber with lifelong experience, who wants to take his new child out in safety with a smooth ride.

I've pretty much given up commenting on these type of posts, as they just bring out all the bigots, and can't be bothered to put up an arguement any more, just let them get on with it, but sometimes can't just sit back and read the crap anymore.
 

John1000

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Are there any marinas you could recommend?

I thought Cornwall has rough seas?? ( Wreckers and the like )

Soton and Poole are expensive I thought.

Thanks
 

Vicki

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OK, so rumours aren't always to be believed!! Not planning on any high winds & heavy swells at the mo', will get a bit of tuition first!

So Chaparral is obviously an option amongst many...how does Regal rate? Was very attracted to Chapperal, Regal & Monteroy recently...looking for a boat that will handle well for complete beginner, but offers a bit of comfort when battening down the hatches. Not looking to cross the channel, just potter about with coast in sight...
 

Riggy

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Right on Brendan......just like wot I bin sayin'.....also Doral (Canadian built) and Regal (American) are also excellent boats with good performance and sea-keeping qualities, I know as I have friends with these boats and go out with them regularly.
 

Riggy

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[ QUOTE ]
Are there any marinas you could recommend?

I thought Cornwall has rough seas?? ( Wreckers and the like )

Soton and Poole are expensive I thought.

Thanks

[/ QUOTE ]
No marina's are cheap down this end of the country......( perhaps another forumite with more knowlege on West country marina fees could enlighten?)
Everywhere has rough seas when the weather is adverse, no more here than anywhere else...we have our boat in the water 11 1/2 months of the year. Wev'e had this 'American lake-boat' just twelve months and put 170 hours on her...and that is not sitting idling in the marina either!!
We were out yesterday...went from Falmouth to Portloe (just this side of Fowey) met up with two 'Raggy' friends, bummed a ride ashore and we all went for several pints...wonderful mixture down here...
I could recommend either Falmouth or Mylor marina's in this area, but they are not cheap and it is hard to get a berth.
The Carrick Roads, Helford passage and surrounding areas are superb for any kind of boating (in the right coditions) so much to see and do winter and summer.
 

hlb

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What you talking about. Without Muckies extencive spare parts you would have been stuck in salcolmbe with a knackered window screen. Yer bloody boat fell to bits!! There was no evidence of the fly bridge when I saw it. You never said when you lost that!!
 

John1000

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Info on US boats I got at the Boat show along with lots of other opinions.

This is why I joined a forum to ask questions before I took the plunge.

I will enquire about berths before buying something.


Crack is, a broker will talk up whatever he has to sell I guess.
 

Riggy

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Quote....from "John1000" ....'I thought Cornwall has rough seas?? ( Wreckers and the like'...

As the saying goes in Cornwall.....

"Mining's scat....
Farmings scat...
Fishings scat...
Back to wreckin' me handsomes..." /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
 

BrendanS

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It's still limping along quite happily without the flybridge. Lost that doing 40knts under Sonning Bridge on the Thames. I'm sure Debs will be able to explain air heights to a novice ditch crawler!
 

steverow

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Dont believe all you hear about the Bristol Channel.
True there are large tides, but it is really no rougher than anywhere else. There are roughs up at the top end, like the shoots, but from Cardiff westwards it's absolutely no problem at all.
Most of what you hear is just not true.
I keep my boat at Swansea, we have good sea access at most states other than MLWS via two locks, and the area is exellent.
Unfortunately there is a long waiting list at swansea marina, but it might be worth giving them a ring for a 24 footer.
Other options are Watchet on the Somerset Coast, where you should get in OK and there are new marinas planned for Barry, Newport and Burry Port over the next year or so.
Generally for marina charges it is about half the price of the south coast, for instance for a 37 footer I am paying £2100 per year, you could double that easily on the solent.
So I cant really understand why you would want to do all the extra travelling and pay double, when you have one of the best cruising areas in the UK on your doorstep.

Steve.
 

John1000

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Thanks Steve.

The area closest to me is Portishead which I am not sure is a good Marina.

But Penarth may be worth visiting as long as we can get in and out ok because of the tides.

But where is there to go?? from this area?
 

steverow

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No I would agree with you about Portishead.
If you come down the channel a bit it would be better. If you go to the Welsh side then your access is dead easy via the M4, probably under an hour.

For a days outing, in The BC with a reasonably fast mobo
there are the following destinations.

Cardiff, Weston SM, Watchet, Porlock Wier, Minehead, Ilfracombe,
Porthcawl, Swansea, Oxwich Bay, Saundersfoot, Tenby, Milford Haven, and Lundy.

For longer trips there is Padstow, for a long weekend, Southern Ireland,and all places along the West Wales coast, of which Aberyswtyth is the main Marina.
Get the tides and timing right and you can even get round Lands End to Falmouth in a day easily.
Not all the local harbours have pontoons, some are drying, which restricts your stay to a couple of hours either side of HW, but nevertheless worth doing.
Ilfracombe for instance is an immensely popular destination for mobo's which usually anchor off and go in on the dinghy.

Penarth, with the construction of the Cardiff Barrage, is easy to get in and out of, I think Similar to Swansea, lock is usually only closed LW +/- 1.5hr. I think the Penarth Marina lock is usually 24 hrs but not sure on this.
Your problem may be getting a berth, as most Marinas are over subscribed.
I think you should ring around now, before you purchase, to see what the lie of the land is.

Hope this helps

Steve.
 

steverow

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Sure the Bristol Channel has large tides, but they dont really run that quick below Cardiif. At Swansea we dont have a problem with it, and our access is probably just as good as on the south coast.

Just because the tidal range is large doesnt make it a bad cruising area.
Most of it is myth put about by South Coast raggie types. True, for slow sailing vessels it can be a bit challenging, but for Mobo's it's really no different from anywhere else. Equally there are plenty of people who sail out of here and enjoy it immensly...and you know what, more often than not they return in one piece.

Steve.
 

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