About the Boat

My sailboat, Dosia, is a 1980 Pearson 365 Ketch. I found her in a boatyard in Charleston, SC in decent shape in Nov of 2002. Although the Pearson 365 is a great design and the hull/layup is strong, the builder didn’t spend much time or money on what went into it. Crooked corners, jagged fiberglass edges, and open-top bulkheads are among the things I’ve found since stripping her down a few years back. Originally I planned on sailing off in the fall of 2003 but I quickly realized I had some major problems to tend to before I could consider taking her offshore…especially as far offshore as I was planning.

Click here —–> Boat Systems Report Card <—— to see a list of major system components I chose and why. I’ll periodically update this page and comment on problems and/or performance with each piece of gear.

Here’s where I get to show off my little toy.

In Papeete, Tahiti In Ecuador In Ua Pou, Marquesas

I knew nothing about fixing boats when I started this process. For every hour of actual work it seemed I needed 2 hours of research just to figure out what I was doing.  Here’s some photos from when I first got her.  She had the distinction of being named Pilgrim’s Pride.  Ugh.

Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride

Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride

Here’s some early shots of Dosia during the renovation and refit. The third shot is of the mast step and the 3.5″ or so of the mast I had to cut off because of corrosion. There was a lot more fiberglass work to be done than I expected and since I didn’t have a clue how to do any of it, each step was a learning process.

Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride

When I was at the boat, I felt unsure of every move I made. Sometimes I would just sit and stare at a project for hours before starting it, going over and over in my mind how this would affect later system installation and ultimately how it would affect me out in the real world.

Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride

For the first year and a half I lived a half hour from the boatyard and worked full time. At this point I had no clue how much time I actually needed to devote to this boat. I never expected to put this much into prepping the boat but now I’m at a comfort level I would have never reached before. I feel confident in my skills and I know this boat inside and out.

Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride Pilgrims Pride

Check out this bow montage to see one of the more dramatic changes I made to the boat.  Once you click on the first photo, click anywhere lightboxed photo and it will advance you to the next pic.

Bow Montage 1 Bow Montage 2 Bow Montage 3 Bow Montage 4 Bow Montage 5 Bow Montage 6 Bow Montage 7 Bow Montage 8 Bow Montage 9

By the time I painted Dosia in May 2005, I could finally see my hard work beginning to pay off.  She finally started to look like a yacht again and only a couple of months after the painting was finished, she was back in the water.

Paint Job 1 Paint Job 2 Paint Job 3 Paint Job 4
Back in the water 1 Back in the water 2

After almost 8,000 miles on Dosia she still surprises me on her ability to keep up.  Especially last year on our 21-day three-thousand mile Pacific crossing.  When that trip was over I finally felt like I knew how to sail her right.   I admit I probably push her a little harder than most (yes, I’m known to fly the spinnaker in 15+ knot winds) but she handles great and I still feel safe and comfortable on her.  Most days, I still can’t believe I even own a boat, much less sailed it this far.  The Pearson 365 is a good boat and it can be a great value if you can find one that’s been cared for.   Dosia is a testament to the fact that a small, plastic boat can take you anywhere.

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