The Back Ground Story
Rock Chalk the Boat, is a website devoted to my dream of first purchasing and live aboard sailboat, out fitting her to go on an extended blue water cruse. I have had a dream of living aboard a sailboat ever since I was in the 5th grade and on the old family vacation to Chicago. The vacation was right out of the National Lampoon move of the same name. We loaded up the new family station wagon from sunny southern California and headed east on a 4 week journey. With one of our stops being Chicago, Windy City, it was hear that I seen my first sailboat in a big Marian along the shore line of Lake Michigan. I remember is rows and rows of big very cool looking boats. So on one of the trips by in the family car I asked what all the boats wear doing her. To my surprise the answer was that people lived on them. So to you man in 5th grad this seemed like the only way to go.
Well years passed having survived school, upper education, wives and three lovely children. That idea of living on a sailboat is within reach. Like many people I have the dream of sitting on the back of my own sailboat drinking adult beverages with little umbrellas in the sunny Caribbean.
I would a have to say that my dream of sailing away into the sunset on a boat started with the family cross country vacation in fourth grade. The family loaded up the “family truckster” and headed from California to points east to Chicago and point east. It was in Chicago on a drive down Lack Shores Drive that I first show a marina wiled with Sailboats. I asked what all the boats wear doing there and my parents told me that people lived on them. It has been from this time forward that I have always waited to do the same. O in fact would always say that someday I would be sitting on the back of my boat with a drink with a small umbrella in it. I know most people just blew me off and did not really believe that this was way goal.
So after three wives and three kids I moved across the Country to start a new job and begin the search for a boat. This search began in the spring of 2011. Up to this point in time I had ready any book I could find about searching for, buying and preparing a sailboat to set out o the high seas. So armed with this information I begin my boat search. I did have a short list of boats that I did want see. I was looking for a boat that
Had a strong haul.
Easy to work on and maintain yourself.
Can be comfortable to live on full time.
Could be purchased on a limited budget.
With this I did have a list of boats I would look at:
Morgan, built and easy to maintain and can be bought for not too much money.
Tayana, well-built good off shore boat.
Oyster, This one is on the list because everyone has to dream.
I stared looking on web and setup some time to meat with a boat broker in the Annapolis area. So on a sunny Saturday I headed out to see some boats for the first time in my life. The Broker asked me What type of boat I wanted and what my goals for the boat where. I informed him that I intended to be a full time live aboard with the goal of sailing around the world as a long term dream. I told him that I wanted a boat that was comfortable live aboard, sturdy, easy to maintain, I gave him a budget of 100K and also let him know that I did not a have a problem with getting a boat the required some sweat equity if the price is right.
He showed me aft cockpit boat with an all wood interior. I found that the aft sleeping berths wear very small, the very nature of an aft cockpit style boat. He then took me to see a Morgan 42 center cockpit boat that was currently being used as full time live aboard boat. The boat had a very nice aft cabin and very open salon and galley. I found the boat to be very homey one that I could very easily see myself living on. We next went to see a Erwin 43. Another center cockpit, this boat to had a center line berth and an open salon and galley. The Erwin has a level change going into the galley that really defined the space witch with the large galley refrigeration space made this one my first choice. The only problem was the price at $135,000.00 would mean a long time of saving every penny I could for a long time.
I did keep in mind that this was the first outing to look at boats and there was plenty of time to make a decision. I also wanted to look at boats on the market from private persons. So over the next month’s witch turned into years I looked at boats from private sealers and brokers alike. I traveled as fair as Connecticut and south to North Carolina to view boats. I looked at boats that wear over my budget to ones that might never be able to be repaired.
I viewed an Erwin 37 in Connecticut was part of an estate that had been all but abended so long that you could have mowed the hull and all the wood on the inside was completely black with mold. The motor had not been started in years. I looked at a boat down in North Carolina that the owner was trying to seal due to health issues. I tried to get this boat at a very good price. I was taking a gamble that that I would be able to get the motor started and the boat then moved north to do the required refit. After some days of negations i got to within $500.00 but could not close the deal. I decided to walk away as I deemed the risk just too great.
Finally in February of 2013 I was looking on Craig’s Lis I noticed a listing for a Morgan out Islander 41. The owner was asking $35,000.00, well with in my budget. I contacted the owner and set up a time to view the boat. To boat was very close by; it was docked in Yorktown on the Chesapeake Bay. The weather was cold but still I stopped by to see the boat. I walked down the long dock to find a with blue stripped Morgan OI ketch. She was fairly clean on the outside. With blue sail covers and a frame to mount a Bimini cover. The owner showed up on time. We made small talk and he took me onboard and showed me around. She had the nicer wood interior, new looking cushion overs throughout. He had taken the original alcohol stove out and the ice box in the galley and nave station wear just that no refigeration.
I’m going to divide the website up into distinct sub pages,
· A Refit and Upgrade page after the boat is purchased.
Store page to purchess items like T-Shirts and hats, as they become avalable.
A trips page so you can follow our fun on the water.
So stop buy have a look and comment if you feel so inclined.