One Year Living On A Sailboat – Q&A
We’ve hit a milestone this month; one year of living on a sailboat. There’s a whole slew of people are out there living the sailing life. This isn’t something new or that hasn’t been done before…exploration by sailboat goes back long before Christopher Columbus. Nevertheless, it’s been a big change in our traveling lifestyle and one that comes with it’s own set of challenges and rewards.
To mark the occasion, last week we beached the dinghy, sat down and reflected on our first year as sailors and boat owners. But we thought, surely we’re missing a few (or a bunch) of curiosities that you may want to know about . So we turned to our Patreon’s for a quick Q&A! It’s one of the ways we show thanks to our Patron’s for being a part of our virtual crew, and we figure, if they have questions it’s most likely one’s others have too.
So, grab a beverage and join us on deck as we sail to Bimini and talk about life on a sailboat.
What a day! Downwind sailing, especially on calm days like this one are dreamy. It’s almost like we’re at anchor with only soft, gentle swaying so comfortable it’s easy to forget we’re moving.
Below are the questions asked in the video along with any links we mentioned that help better answer the question. Also, we forgot a couple questions in the video so we’ve included those at the bottom, oops (that’s what happens when we try to do things pre-coffee).
Q Could you share your monthly cost, not including equipment?
A We will share soon. All current and future posts about expenses can be found under the expenses tab on the sailing page: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/sailing
Q I know you didn’t do this to explore pink beaches. What would be your criteria for the next adventure beyond the Bahamas?
A We’re all about experiences and it’s a never ending curiosity and thirst to see and do everything that drives us.
Q What has been your experience with the Patreon? How has it impacted your plans and opportunities? Is it contributing as much income as you wished?
A Patreon has been incredible. Being viewer funded is indescribable. If you are not sure what Patreon is, learn about it here: https://www.patreon.com/the_wynns
Q A solar flair or crazy rogue nation takes out all of the satellites, are you gonna be able to manage the planet and continue to sail the high seas on charts?
A Ha ha, gotta love the hypothetical. Yes, we did learn how to navigate using charts in sailing school. All of our Sailing Schooled episodes can be found through that tab on the sailing page: gonewiththewynns.com/sailing
Q I’m worried about getting skin damage from the sun….is sunblock your only prevention and how much do you go through?
A Sun exposure is a legit concern. I (nikki) have worn mineral makeup for years which naturally protects my skin: gonewiththewynns.com/product/nikkis-makeup I also like this website as its an excellent place to learn about sunscreens that are good for us and the environment: ewg.org/sunscreen/
Q Were you ‘handy’ before you became full time sailors?
Q A few years ago you posted about how you deal with mail, health insurance, etc. I’m curious if that process has changed since you’ve moved from RV to boat.
A We are still working out our options for sailing and it all will be different. Here is the RV post this question is referring to: gonewiththewynns.com/rv-questions-residency-mail-health-insurance
Q How do you handle money? Do you have a money manager here in the US or just manage things yourself via internet?
A We’re finding we use way more cash than ever before. The wonderful world of the internet allows us to manage everything from our computers.
Q Is there one thing you miss about RVing? What one thing do you like best about sailing compared to RVing?
A We miss the conveniences of RVing and how much faster we could get things done. If you haven’t checked out our RV’ing page, it’s how we spent our first six years as full time travelers trekking around North America: gonewiththewynns.com/rvin As for the sailboat, the ability to make safe, clean drinking water anywhere in the world is a beautiful thing.
Q How is the water system working that converts salt water to fresh, and how is the quality of that water, and do you drink it.
A Love having a watermaker and couldn’t imagine not having one. Here is our watermaker info: gonewiththewynns.com/product/watermaker
Q What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you started? Any surprises.
A We went back and responded to our own Thoughts Expectations, Uncertainties from a year ago here: gonewiththewynns.com/full-time-sailing-expectations
Q What do think about cat vs. mono hull sailing.
A We bought a cat because we knew it was going to be the best for our wants/needs/travel style. I have always loved Pat from Bumfuzzles post on this subject: bumfuzzle.com/tag/cat-vs-mono/
Q Do you think you bought the right size boat? newer model year?
A If we were to do it all again, we would still buy the same boat. The size is just right and we couldn’t afford a newer boat. We scarcely came up with the funds to buy this one. That story here: gonewiththewynns.com/exhausting-journey-buying-cruising-sailboat
Q What would you recommend to someone who is looking to purchase a catamaran to live on?
A Find a good buyers broker who can help you find the right boat for your wants/needs/travel style. We have had a great experience with Kent and the guys at Just Catamarans. justcatamarans.net/
Q What are the top 5 things you would suggest someone planning to live this lifestyle do before buying the boat and getting started.
A I don’t know that we have a top 5 list but Sailing School was incredibly helpful and it would have been great to do that even sooner. Then, finding a good buyers broker was invaluable to us as newbies. They guided us through the process and shared knowledge we couldn’t have learned otherwise. We used Just Catamarans out of Florida and totally recommend them.
Q Do you guys get lonely? It seems you spend a lot of time without any human contact other than each other.
A Not at all, the cruisers we meet are incredibly friendly, helpful and all around an awesome bunch of humans to be around.
Q Does anyone grow veggies on their boats?
A Microgreens and herbs we’ve seen rarely, but no one growing veggies. We sometimes grow herbs but clearing customs with potted plants can pose issues not to mention we have to battle the cats for anything green.
Q How much has maintenance been? How do you even budget for that?
A We have covered a lot of our maintenance and costs that you can find under the Mods & Maintenance tab on the sailing page: gonewiththewynns.com/sailing
We will eventually share more on this subject but until then I found this post from fellow sailors helpful when we were in the planning phase, and from our short experience it seems dead on: sailingtotem.com/2014/02/cruising-costs-routine-maintenance-and.html
Q Your clothes always look “unwrinkled”. Why aren’t half your clothes with holes and oil stains?
A Better than an iron – In a spritzer bottle combine 1 cup water (purified or filtered) with 1 tsp. liquid fabric softener (we like seventh generation or Mrs. Meyer’s). If you want it to evaporate faster, add 1 tsp. rubbing alcohol to the mixture.
Q I think I remember that you have AC in the cabin. How is it powered? From the motor, separate generator, or dare I say battery.
A We are able to power our AC off of our lithium battery bank and here is the device that allows us to do so: gonewiththewynns.com/product/air-conditioning-off-grid
A couple of questions that didn’t make the video…don’t know how we missed them, sorry about that.
Q What do you do with trash?
A We haven’t had an issue finding places to properly dispose of trash. Typically, if there is a place to land the dinghy, it’s a boat friendly place that has a dumpster nearby. We do show us doing this occasionally on video. We show it in both of these videos to give you an idea: gonewiththewynns.com/cruising-marsh-harbour-grocery-stores-bicycles gonewiththewynns.com/green-turtle-cay-tonka-goombay-smash
Q I couldn’t survive without music. Did y’all bring Ipods filled to the brim or pick up music on radio?
A We couldn’t survive without music either. We have hard drives full of music we’ve collected over the years but we haven’t reached for them because we use Amazon prime music. If you haven’t checked it out, it’s worth looking into.
If you are already an Amazon Prime member, the basic prime music is free and there are some 2 million songs. If you don’t know what Amazon Prime is, check it out here: Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial
If you are a hard core music fan, check out the Amazon Music Unlimited because it has tens of millions of songs. There is a 30 day free trial for that too: Try Amazon Music Unlimited 30-Day Free Trial
Extra Cruising and Sailing Information
There are a few blogs I have kept up with over the years that have provided both inspiration and information I found helpful. There are tons and tons of blogs out there I follow for fun and I am discovering new ones every day so this isn’t by any means my complete list but rather the ones I was reading a couple of years ago when we were still dreaming and I was looking for helpful information.
- Sailing Totem – sailingtotem.com/
- Bumfuzzle – bumfuzzle.com/
- Windtraveler – windtraveler.net/
- Turf to Surf – turftosurf.com/
- The Boat Galley – theboatgalley.com/
Did we miss anything? If you have curiosity about sailing life, leave us a comment below and we’ll chat. Thanks for hanging with us and being a part of the journey! And of course, a big thanks to all of our Patrons for helping us to keep the videos flowing.
Gear Used in Video
Cameras Used to Capture This Video
- Sony A7ii: http://bit.ly/a7rii-sony
- Sony Zoom Mic: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/product/sony-gun-zoom-microphone-black
- Sony 24 – 70mm f4 lens: http://bit.ly/2470-zeiss
- All of our up to date photo and editing gear: gonewiththewynns.com/best-travel-camera-video-photography