Ever restored an old sailboat? If you have, you know how therapeutic in can be. Have plans to do so? What follows are my tips to make the project more enjoyable and successful. (This blog post is adapted from an article of mine that appeared in the January/February 2012 issue of Good Old Boat magazine .) I first got into sailing by restoring a 1972 Helms 25 swing keel. I'm not particularly handy, nor did I have boat restoration experience at the time. In fact, restoring a sailboat wasn't "Plan A" for getting into the sailing and cruising lifestyle. However, sometimes the winds of life (and budgets!) don't blow from behind and we can't sail downwind to our future. Instead, we've got to trim the sails and figure out how to make progress towards our windward goals. And so, I picked up a $400 project boat and started to teach myself about restoration. Hopefully you'll some of the tips below useful for your own project. Document the proce
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The Dream Begins... We did it. We bought our first sailboat. She's a total project boat that needs a lot of our love. Luckily we're itching to give it! Technically, she's a 1972 Helms 25 (Hull Number 44). Her stats are as follows: LOA: 24'11" Beam: 7' Draft: 1'8" (keel up) or 6' (keel down) Displacement: 3,150 lbs Design: Swing keel cruiser In reality, the dream began long ago. I was raised a powerboater and have always had the urge to buy my own boat and seek adventure. Fortunately, my wife shares (tolerates) my passion for adventure, the water and boats. This blog will document the restoration process of our Helms 25 and begin to tell the story of our dream to sail around the world.