Boating Starting Over This Is Our Voyage

Our boating starting over voyage begins here. On this page I have included links for the process of what we went through in order to build this 65' aluminum cruiser. My goal is to provide you with the very best information I can from living this long process of building Magic Dragon.

Above picture, I will never forget there were 3 rainbows in the sky that day when we lowered her into the Intracoastal Waterway.

But please let my actions speak louder than my words.

“Hard is trying to rebuild yourself, piece by piece, with no instruction book, and no clue as to where all the important bits are supposed to go.”

Nick Hornby

Laying the foundation begins here, the start of our journey...

                                    Above picture of Mariner


Mariner was first owned and sailed by Ted Turner and Dennis Conner,
they first designed and built her to sail in the America’s Cup race.
Mariner was the second twelve meter yacht ever built from aluminum.

When they sailed her, Mariner proved to be too slow in the sea trials
and she was eliminated from racing in the America's cup. She ended up
being dry docked up North for years.

Art spent years gutting, redesigning and pouring heart and soul into
a dream that he held onto for years. Waiting for the day his cruising
life style would begin.

Arbitration brings 'devastation for one man'

Finally his sea trials began for the newly renovated Mariner,
but deteriorating winds gusting to 45 knots and seas 15 to 20 feet.
Mariner ran aground along with his dreams.

The sailboat ran aground seven miles south of Palm Beach Inlet.  The keel was against  a reef...

The boat towing service played with Mariner like she was expendable, let's explore this together. I would much rather give you the information and then you can decide for yourself how you would handle it. Information gives you power over every circumstance, so next time the tables can be turned in your favor.

Expendable: (of an object) designed to be used only once and then abandoned or destroyed.

Sail Boat Mariner was gone. Join us as we take on a project larger than 1 man and 1 woman.

A complete journey of court dates, meetings with the lawyer, and a never ending heart ache that just wouldn't go away. I look back now and I can see there was no way Art could win this arbitration case...it was over before it began. That's why I have built these pages so you can have a better understanding of what happens in an arbitration court.

                                    Soundings Magazine Cover


Jim Flannery from Soundings magazine wrote an article and brought to light a very sad situation. This article also goes into detail of what to expect from a boat towing company. Mariner was a total loss...

This is were it all began, two people left with trauma trying to make sense out of tragedy. Both of our lives were left in an ash heap.
But what doesn't kill you will make you stronger...

Coming out the other side of all these trials has left me stronger, even though walking through them at the time, I thought I was going to die.

Beginning again gives you an opportunity to change things you might not have liked the first, second, third time around.

A mighty oak does not become mighty without surviving a lot of storms. Don't give up..."Today's mighty oak is just yesterday's nut that held it's ground".

None of this is meant for bragging purposes, it was all very hard work. Art and my marriage did not survive this journey. But I did finish and complete this project in the full, even with us getting divorced 2 years into this project.

Magic Dragon is completely finished and it took 6 days a week of work for me and Art it was 7 days a week (his choice) for... 9 years...working on this boat.  hhhhmmmm, well, enough of that, let's go on...

What do you do when your life is in a big pile of debris? Do you sit down on it and hope things will change? How do you put all the pieces back together after everything seemed to be lost.

We started counting what we had left. Then we had to change our perspective, which lead to a new road and what was buried deep inside us, began to unfold before us. We were looking at a project that was a lot larger then us and hoping we were capable of achieving this dream.

After the decision to build, now what? Oh, where to begin?

We had no experience with hiring a navel architect for our new yacht design. Armed with our list, the navel architects that we met with did not have the same vision we had. Basically the specifications went in one ear and out the other.

A cookie cutter sailboat, one size fits all approach was not going to go very far with us. The challenge was getting this vision down on paper, drawings, measurements, so we could start moving forward. Write the vision and make in plan. Paper, pencils, erasers let's go.

Our hull construction for Magic Dragon page, shows you some of the details we wanted wanted. It's so important with a job this size to know where your focus is going to be. Everything else will fall into place.

We wanted a fully enclosed pilothouse, that was important for our needs to keep the elements off of us. Wind, rain, sun can show up at any time and we love the sun but only if we choose to be out in it.

When traveling to distant shores there are certain times it's important to be able to get under cover when you are cruising. Enjoying  the ability to be inside during bad weather while motoring as opposed to either being out in the cockpit, alone, or building a complete tent over it to escape the elements.

The heart of the engine room is the diesel engine, if the wind will not corporate, phase two, Detroit diesel marine. I can truly say this sailboat can get out of it's own way. We didn't want to go with a small engine and be underpowered or two knots too slow. 

We wanted a dependable engine so we were able to leave our home port for far off destinations and be confident in the fact that we will get home quicker if we need to.

Another aspect of our aluminum boat design was making sure this cruising sail boat had a shallow draft. We knew cruising, exploring and the adventure of traveling meant we needed a design that allowed us to get close to land. Our thinking process was there would be more areas in which we can anchor.

A shallow draft, combined with power to spare for rough conditions at the mouth of an inlet, is a lifesaver.

We won't run a ground as often and one of the main points is in anchorages, we can "sneak" in behind everyone else and anchor tight up to the beach or the end of a cove. It gives us more flexibility when trying to find harbors of refuge to accommodate us.

Living in Florida, tropical storms and of coarse hurricane season, there is a huge benefit being able to hide from a hurricane or storm. We can go up shallow rivers and not get the full blunt of the wind. It gives us the opportunity to be able to shelter further up the creek or deeper in the mangroves.

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