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Sailing Books

Ocean Cruising on a Budget, Anne Hammick

Many people who dream about voyaging with their own sailboat lose their dream as they wait to get enough funds together to actually buy a boat and the time to live aboard without an income. This book describes how you can buy and refit an older, seaworthy sailboat, and how to budget your funds while underway. Probably the most important lesson from this book is the basic equipment and skills required as a minimum for offshore travel by sailboat. How much money do you need? Figure US$ 10 to 20 thousand for initial boat purchase, the same amount again to bring the boat to seaworthy condition. For your monthly budget, figure out how much you spend now on food and beverages, and add a little if you like to go out. It will probably come out to between $500 and $2000 a month, depending upon your lifestyle.

Anne’s book explains the most likely method for a cruiser on a budget to successfully break ties from land: through the purchase of a used, fiberglass monohull sailboat of about 30 feet in length. Her focus is on sailing from the British Isles to the Carribbean, and other parts of the Atlantic. The discussion includes what needs to be done to the typical “classic plastic” sailboat to make it ready for an Atlantic Crossing. After reading this book, you will want to move on to other books which focus on the details of navigation, provisioning, maintenance, etc., but this book will give you an excellent overview and help you build your plan.

Voyaging on a Small Income, Annie Hill

This book amazes me every time I read it. Annie and Pete Hill have been able to live aboard, regularly voyaging in the Atlantic from Greenland to Venezuela, while working occassionally at low paying jobs. They have been able to put enough money away to live off the interest from their savings bonds. They built their own dory cruiser, which is set up beautifully for passagemaking and claim to enjoy the passage as much as the destination.

How did they do it? By applying a rational decision making process to every expenditure they make (they pinch pennies to the max). This book will tell you why the best foods for passagemaking are fresh fruits and vegetables, eggs, flour, pasta, beans and homemade bread. How they heated their floating home while cruising the arctic. Why an efficient galley may be your most important cost saving piece of equipment. What type of ocean-cruising boat you can build and rig for a minimum of money. After reading this book, I guarantee you will question why you are working and living as you are now.

Self-Sufficient Sailor, Lin and Larry Pardey

This book is a classic for those trying to understand what is so appealing about a cruising and voyaging lifestyle. Lin and Larry Pardey introduced many people to the possibilities of crossing oceans on small boats and living a full time cruising life. They are purists in the sense that they have no electrical system, no motor, no two-way radio, no holding tank, no aluminum mast, no modern fiberglass hull. Just a traditional wooden hull, sail and kerosene lamps. The Pardey’s show how to live and sail well with a minimum of modern equipment.

Cruising Reference Books

Navigation and Seamanship

Boats and Maintenance