>My first posting to a newsgroup ever. I'm thinking of building a rather
>large sailing trimaran. Big enough ( 60 - 70') for several to live
>comfortable during blue water cruising. I have tried to get the idea out of
>my head for the last 20 years. When I go to bed each night the only thing
>that calms me down to sleep is thinking about building this thing. I really
>want to know if there are any others out there this has, is or avoided
>going through the same thing?
Your message does not say how much you have had to do with boats. I
will assume the lowest common denominator.
Have you built any boats, or a house? Did you finish them properly and
feel really proud of the result? Have you done any sailing? Have you
lots of money ($1/4-1/2 million)? Do you work full time to get that
money? Do you have a family? Are they 200% behind the idea? Will your
partner work full time to support your building the boat? Probably in
return for your being broke, tired, irritable, dejected (or at least
very manic/depressive as things are going good or bad on the boat).
How selfish can you be?
Do you have the skills in ANY area of boatbuilding? (For a tri you
would probably look at aluminium welding, fibreglass, or ply, or all
three or any combination). You also need to be a cabinet maker,
rigger, engineer, electrical/electronic technician, personnel manager,
and wheeler dealer.
Are you in good health? (I know a guy who built a 40' cement yacht,
and went through a packet of smokes just while they turned the hull).
How old are you? Do you drink? You will either give up completely
(broke) or take it up completely (broken <G>)
Are you able to carry out tedious tasks, but without the ease that
makes these tasks easier for those highly skilled at them (miles of
welding, hours of fibreglass laying etc)?
In that 20 years of dreaming have you done anything about starting or
really planning to build? Plan preferences, materials, costing,
transport considerations once built, building site selection/booking
needs/costs? Have you learnt coastal/celestial navigation?
This boat will cost a LOT of money (as much as a big, high quality
house), and take you many months (years!) to build and fit out
properly. Just the rent on the space to build would be enormous,
unless you are lucky enough to live on the water's edge. Plans will
I would imagine that to move the thing any distance would cost
thousands in itself. This boat would be maybe 30' wide, or more. Tris
like that don't just fold down <G>.
Among other nautical endeavours, I have built a 23' cat, and did it in
an amateur boatyard. It took me 9 months...rigged but minimally fitted
out inside. There were MANY broken dreams just sitting there, most of
them badly built and almost unsellable (and CERTAINLY unsailable), and
many people who had used all of their spare time and money for the
last 5 (minimum) years to near completion. Broken marriages, etc etc.
I dreamed of building a larger boat (40' is a LOT of boat to build,
let alone a 60-70' tri!) but built the smaller one, and watching the
results of others' efforts scared, even if it didn't cure me. I still
dream, but satisfy my longings with working on and with lesser craft.
I'm not saying don't do it. Building a boat is a beautiful thing and
people do it. I've done and helped with many myself. But your chances
of success are greatly affected by the answers to the above questions.
The dream can become a nightmare of immense proportions. And a
half-built boat is worth nowhere what you put in in materials,
usually, let alone the work, if you try to sell it.
If you haven't cruised aboard before, do so, on someone else's boat,
or buy a smaller one and have a go, to get used to the realities. Crew
on yachts in races/cruises. Anything.
Help to build another person's boat, for free, for a while. It's no
more a waste of time than building your own <G>.
Anyone who builds amateur boats is crazy! My thought is that you look
at from the point of view that by the time you have finished it, you
could be 5-30 years older. If you finish it, you will use it, from
what I have seen of amateur builders. Those that get that far go on,
to various levels of success, in sailing. But if you get even nearly
there and don;t finish, you will hate it.
Of course, if you do have half a mil, and lots of time, and all the
above things are GO, then good luck to you <G>. I had some time to