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View Full Version : The death of a classic boat forum



TimH
10-27-2009, 02:49 AM
This bothers me immensely . The Alberg 37 forum is closing due to lack of interest and the cost of keeping up a vBulletin forum.

http://alberg37.com/upload/index.php

The moderator has done a huge amount to stimulate interest, but there arent mny people into old plastic boats I guess.
Anyone with any interest should check it out. Lots of good tips:

http://alberg37.com/upload/forumdisplay.php?f=11

Concordia...41
10-27-2009, 05:38 AM
It looks like a lot of good information there. I wonder if it would be possible to somehow keep the site up, but not allow new posts, need a moderator, etc. At least that way when someone was researching one of the topics discussed, they could at least read the posts.

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 05:45 AM
One of my frozen snot forums died last month. Its a trend due to the economy not lack of interest.

skuthorp
10-27-2009, 06:01 AM
I expect they are too 'modern' in concept yet. Haven't made the transition from trash, to junk, to interesting junk, to antique yet. Far too many still about and maybe too difficult for 'amateurs' to repair safely. Old glass fibres can be very nasty in the fingers or the lungs.

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 06:33 AM
I expect they are too 'modern' in concept yet. Haven't made the transition from trash, to junk, to interesting junk, to antique yet. Far too many still about and maybe too difficult for 'amateurs' to repair safely. Old glass fibres can be very nasty in the fingers or the lungs.

Not true, Good old boat magazine covers that. There is no cheaper way to get on the water than old glass as I have one myself. Sure I dream of owning classic wood but very few of us can afford it. The maintenance would kill me. Can you point out a forty year old wooden boat I can buy for $500 and invest 2k over the course of a month and get wet. She has been in the water since and past a couple of minor issues like nav lights and scrubbing the bottom I have invested very little other than upgrades. She still is on the mooring and ready to sail when most woodies are on the hard for repairs. I have probally covered close to a few thousand sea miles in that time. Though mostly local she made Georges bank and back this summer.

Joe (SoCal)
10-27-2009, 06:39 AM
Not true, Good old boat magazine covers that. There is no cheaper way to get on the water than old glass as I have one myself. Sure I dream of owning classic wood but very few of us can afford it. The maintenance would kill me. Can you point out a forty year old wooden boat I can buy for $500 and invest 2k over the course of a month and get wet. She has been in the water since and past a couple of minor issues like nav lights and scrubbing the bottom I have invested very little other than upgrades. She still is on the mooring and ready to sail when most woodies are on the hard for repairs. I have probally covered close to a few thousand sea miles in that time. Though mostly local she made Georges bank and back this summer.

Not on the hard still sailing DAILY .... and she's wood and I'm not wealthy. Must be a conspiracy :p

http://i107.photobucket.com/albums/m320/fosterhere/photo-1556.jpg

Sorry about the Alberg forum, nice classic glass

huisjen
10-27-2009, 06:42 AM
I see Mark's post only because Joe quoted it.

I paid $500 for Prudence, Put in about $700 over two months, and sailed her to South Bristol and back. Does that count?

Dan

skuthorp
10-27-2009, 06:46 AM
I stand corrected. Not the same 'romance' as a woodie then?

martin schulz
10-27-2009, 06:47 AM
Sure I dream of owning classic wood but very few of us can afford it. The maintenance would kill me.

BS...
I often wonder why so many people approach me to tell first me what a beautiful old classic yacht I own and then explain that the reason they don't own a classic is that it is just too much work.

I guess the real reason behind this is that those people don't really want to own a classic yacht but are somehow ashamed to admit this, since they admire such boats on the water. And then they start to make up silly excuses for not owning such boats.

I am out of the water for max. 2 weeks each year and during that time I do everything needed to have her afloat. Most people owning plastic boats I watch spend much more time watering, washing, cleaning their boats than I have to invest to keep my boat in shape.

Hwyl
10-27-2009, 06:50 AM
How many Alberg 37's were built. I could never see them reaching the critical mass of a forum. A listserve maybe.

It would be like a forum for left handed Welsh guys called Gareth living in Maine

rbgarr
10-27-2009, 06:51 AM
That's too bad about the Alberg 37 forum. Perhaps if it could be retitled so as to attract all fg Albergs it would have had a wider audience. There weren't too many posts by non A37 attendees in the other class (A35, A30, etc.) forums.

Joe (SoCal)
10-27-2009, 06:53 AM
It would be like a forum for left handed Welsh guys called Gareth living in Maine

I'd join ;)
Or like narcissistic bald guys from Cold Spring on Hudson posting a blog about love & sailing ;)

rbgarr
10-27-2009, 06:54 AM
It would be like a forum for left handed Welsh guys called Gareth living in Maine

I'd join that one. Think of all the bizarre things that would appear there. Alot of man bites dog stories I wager. ;>

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 06:57 AM
How many Alberg 37's were built. I could never see them reaching the critical mass of a forum. A listserve maybe.

It would be like a forum for left handed Welsh guys called Gareth living in Maine


My thanks to Gareth once again and to the naysayers above that's fine they throw their small daysailers out there but mine is ready to hit open seas for distance and has. Its fully equipped for power with a wind genny and has full VHF/HF and Nav. With a galley/head and room to sleep four comfortably even though the manufacturer says six. At some point she will carry me to the islands and if it were wood I could not afford it. Its my truth and if it bothers the religious let it. If daring Dan and Metrosexual boy would like to join me on a December run to Georges bank I am game.

Joe (SoCal)
10-27-2009, 07:01 AM
At some point she will carry me to the islands

Nope

I will probably log more nautical miles in the month of November on the Hudson than you will in the next 5 years bobbing on your mooring.

How many days sailing this past season ?

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 07:08 AM
At least forty including three multiple day trips. This season was spent on motor issues and learning to hang the big bag out front single handed. I lost one sail to tearing but have replaced it with a decent used one. The fact that I don't video tape it comes down to I don't own a camera and I am not a narcissist. My sailing is for me and no one else unless they are along for the ride.

Joe (SoCal)
10-27-2009, 07:11 AM
Bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ha ha 40 days & 40 nights, what are you a prophet sailor ROTFLOL :D :D :D :D If you count multiple times I may go out in one day I can do that in a month LOL

I SAIL DAILY

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 07:25 AM
Bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ha ha 40 days & 40 nights, what are you a prophet sailor ROTFLOL :D :D :D :D If you count multiple times I may go out in one day I can do that in a month LOL

I SAIL DAILY

Dude, you live on a river and go up and down up and down. I have a two hour run down to open water and am broke more often than not so each trip is a planned event most often. I can guarantee Tidbit saw no open water but Marla did many,many times. Its funny to hear a kneedeep try to make comparisons. I lived on the Hudson for five years and hit the water often. It was easy as I lived one mile from the ramp and to be honest I was bored to death after the first season. I sure as hell wouldn't brag about it.
You had a thread about circumnavigating Manhattan, I have done that several times and to be honest its a chick trip as it usually ended up with getting laid at the dock in Port Jeff as I have friends there and I would sail down for my girlfriend so she could see her family. Never found a need to brag or post a blog about an adventure most people with a boat nearby have done themselves.
Of course all that was done under power as I am new to sail but its a non event just the same. Now I have learned to sail and hit "The Ocean" more often than not. I still do not make videos and brag.

Figment
10-27-2009, 07:26 AM
...there arent many people into old plastic boats I guess.


www.plasticclassicforum.com

oh, I think those with interest will find a place to chat.

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 07:41 AM
What? No snappy comeback Metro boy? :D

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 07:51 AM
BS...
I often wonder why so many people approach me to tell first me what a beautiful old classic yacht I own and then explain that the reason they don't own a classic is that it is just too much work.

I guess the real reason behind this is that those people don't really want to own a classic yacht but are somehow ashamed to admit this, since they admire such boats on the water. And then they start to make up silly excuses for not owning such boats.

I am out of the water for max. 2 weeks each year and during that time I do everything needed to have her afloat. Most people owning plastic boats I watch spend much more time watering, washing, cleaning their boats than I have to invest to keep my boat in shape.

Martin, Having built wooden boats professionally and having lovingly restored a classic 68' Egg Harbor owning it for over a decade then having to let it go as I could no longer afford to keep her after a divorce, I think there is a pain component involved here also. If I was back in the money and it looked to be stable it is my dream to once again own a classic except sail instead of power this time.
I am just trying to be practical and fear the thought of owning a wooden boat that sits on the hard rottiing away because I cannot afford it. If I lost Marla under such circumstances I would be fine with it as its plastic and I am not attached. Such is the plight if you really love wood. Right now my priority is just getting on the water. There is no more easy solution than old glass.

Ted Hoppe
10-27-2009, 08:01 AM
www.plasticclassicforum.com

oh, I think those with interest will find a place to chat.

Could the information be rolled into another forum such as plasticclassicforum.com?

TimH
10-27-2009, 10:42 AM
Good suggestions. I passed them on.

Dave Wright
10-27-2009, 11:24 AM
.... Right now my priority is just getting on the water. There is no more easy solution than old glass....

Absolutely correct! (When you get it right I have no problem agreeing with you).

TimH
10-27-2009, 11:55 AM
glass boats are cheap and if you bounce one off a reef and destroy it it doesnt matter.
If you bounced a Concordia yawl off a reef it would hurt.

CharlieCobra
10-27-2009, 01:17 PM
It'd hurt me personally to bounce ANY boat off a reef, glass or not.

Robert L.
10-27-2009, 01:17 PM
Isn’t it interesting how everything around here turns into a pi$$ing match, or a mine is bigger than yours catfight?

Anyway here is the deal, it costs money to run a forum, even without a moderator etc. Monthly fees to the service provider, traffic fees for busy sites (don’t believe those unlimited storage and traffic deals. If you are using a lot of space or bandwidth you will pay for it), licensing and support costs for commercial software. vBulletin which also powers WBF is a piece of commercial software, it is a very nice package but for a small operation or an individual it is expensive to purchase and support. If you want to save the Alberg 37 Forum send the dude some money.

Moving and converting forums is not an easy or cheap thing to do, even with the best conversion software you still end up with many hours of hand editing the database, if it can be done at all. The Alberg 37 Forum isn’t particularly big (1,242 posts in 227 threads) so it might be doable but with so few active members (28) it would be hard to justify the effort. In this case it might just be best to scrape the posts, throw out the cr@p and redundant quoting of earlier posts and turn it into some sort of FAQ. Scraping the post could be done pretty quickly by a few guys with a little time on their hands, just click on each page of each thread and then do a save as a web archive. This is actually easier than trying to extract info out of the data dump as it keeps in in sequence and context. This of course would need to be done in the next couple of days. After this is done then you could work at cleaning them up. So any if you are really serious about saving the knowledge get in touch with Charles at the forum and offer to help him out. Or again send money.

So what about WBF, where would you guys be if the Forum shuts down? Quite frankly I don’t think it could realistically be converted or scraped. How many of you would be willing to pay a forum subscription fee to keep it going? How many actually subscribe or buy copies of the magazine on the news stand? I know my Christmas list includes the USB drive with WoodenBoat Magazine: The Complete Collection.

TimH
10-27-2009, 01:33 PM
If you want to save the Alberg 37 Forum send the dude some money.

I posted a suggestion that maybe we could take up a collection to help pay for it. It is about $300 to renew it. No response to any of my posts though yet. I think a lot of the users log in very seldom and wont find out about this until its too late.


Scraping the post could be done pretty quickly by a few guys with a little time on their hands, just click on each page of each thread and then do a save as a web archive.


I already used wGet and captured the whole site for my own records.

Upnorth1
10-27-2009, 01:39 PM
This bothers me immensely . The Alberg 37 forum is closing due to lack of interest and the cost of keeping up a vBulletin forum.

http://alberg37.com/upload/index.php

The moderator has done a huge amount to stimulate interest, but there arent mny people into old plastic boats I guess.
Anyone with any interest should check it out. Lots of good tips:

http://alberg37.com/upload/forumdisplay.php?f=11


Interest in all forums ebbs and flows. As for vBulletin, there are plenty of highly configurable forums out there that are cheap, or free if you don't mind a single small banner ad up top, no popups either.
He could also replace the forum with a link to a yahoo group which many boating groups also use.
I've been managing a yahoo group for Olympic Dolphin sailors, a small group for quite a few years now, and it doesn't cost a cent. Participation does ebb and flow as I said, but those who are members appreciate the group as an important source of info on their boats.
So, tell him to be patient and also to get a cheaper forum/board.

As an after thought have you considered taking the group over? I really enjoy mine.:)

Upnorth1
10-27-2009, 01:43 PM
Oh, and Joe and Mark, when are you two childish and rude people going to grow up? You'd think you were both fifteen years old going on twelve! You are both pathetic to say the least.

Ted Hoppe
10-27-2009, 02:04 PM
There is an content ownership issue as well.

Like stripping a once loved boat before the chainsaw, a wise person would think that experience and information may serve them later. When I read a topic on line that helps me.., I copy the information in a PDF format. Which I can review later in my computer desktop folder. I then time to time burn a disc to back it up. The varous files make for getting information accessable as well as can be agregated in various searches. That said, I still perfer hearing heartbeats and energy behind the threads of experience.

Michael s/v Sannyasin
10-27-2009, 03:06 PM
I've been helping manage the Westsail Owners Association (http://www.westsail.org) website/message board for the last several years. We pay for the web hosting through annual association dues, and several of us donate our time to keep things running. The dues also go to partially fund a series of get-togethers we call Rendezvous at various places around the country every year.

The message board is pretty key to the association, and though it is not active the way this forum is active, it is extremely useful for all Westsail owners. One of the participants is a guy named Bud Taplin who was the Westsail general manager during Westsail's hayday and knows more about these boats than just about anyone... so, the technical information available is priceless... well, actually it costs $20 a year... but I figure if it saves me one hour a year of scratching my head, it's worth it.

Our board software is called Discuss, and it is the free version. They have a pro version with some extra features, but we didn't really need the extra features.

If anything, our classic plastic Association is growing, not shrinking, so, maybe there is something in our model that will help your Alberg forum.

Cheers!

Kaa
10-27-2009, 03:15 PM
Anyway here is the deal, it costs money to run a forum, even without a moderator etc.

It costs about $10/month to the hosting provider. That's it.

For a low-volume forum with little graphics the normal disk/bandwidth restrictions would be fine. And I don't think there's a problem in finding free forum software.

I don't believe the whining about the cost of running low-bandwidth sites.

Kaa

TimH
10-27-2009, 03:19 PM
His specific issue is with vBulletin, who just changed ownership and jacked up their rates a lot.

It is probably not trivial to change everything over to a free forum software.

Kaa
10-27-2009, 03:38 PM
His specific issue is with vBulletin, who just changed ownership and jacked up their rates a lot.

It is probably not trivial to change everything over to a free forum software.

That's a good lesson on using pay-as-you-go software...

To change over to a new forum software might not be trivial, but I am sure it's doable. Moreover, I'm sure some people did this and wrote about their experience on the 'net :-)

A simpler alternative might be to switch to new forum software and leave the existing posts as a fixed-in-time archive, still searchable, of course. That way you won't have the headache of converting vBulletin's formats, etc.

Kaa

Rob Stokes, N. Vancouver
10-27-2009, 05:09 PM
Our WW forum is shutting down as soon as the subscription etc. runs out - we've pretty much given up on it. too bad - there's a lot of good info in the archives too.

I think there's just too many forums these days, and traffic on ours went form decent, to nothing over a span of about a year.

this place is different though - I think it's specialized enough, and professional enough that it's not in any danger.

Tylerdurden
10-27-2009, 07:54 PM
Oh, and Joe and Mark, when are you two childish and rude people going to grow up? You'd think you were both fifteen years old going on twelve! You are both pathetic to say the least.


The day he stops with the attacks is the day it will stop. Try that on for size or deal.

Upnorth1
10-27-2009, 08:08 PM
The day he stops with the attacks is the day it will stop. Try that on for size or deal.

Am I just imagining that I can hear you stamping your little foot?
Good grief!

oznabrag
10-27-2009, 08:21 PM
Am I just imagining that I can hear you stamping your little foot?
Good grief!

With any luck he'll hold his breath until he passes out.

bluedog225
10-27-2009, 08:52 PM
I know my Christmas list includes the USB drive with WoodenBoat Magazine: The Complete Collection.

I just bought about $300 worth of assorted woodworking stuff. I started to order a bunch of it from the wooden boat store. I decide not to because of the censorship methods used lately. I actually debated it for a while and felt bad about not being more supportive but the fact is I can vote by leaving or vote with my pocketbook. A drop in the bucket but it's what I could do.

Joe (SoCal)
10-28-2009, 06:23 AM
I just bought about $300 worth of assorted woodworking stuff. I started to order a bunch of it from the wooden boat store. I decide not to because of the censorship methods used lately. I actually debated it for a while and felt bad about not being more supportive but the fact is I can vote by leaving or vote with my pocketbook. A drop in the bucket but it's what I could do.

Probably the most important post in the last 6 months I hope someone is paying attention to these details.

Tylerdurden
10-28-2009, 06:58 AM
Originally Posted by bluedog225 http://www.woodenboat.com/forum/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.woodenboat.com/forum/showthread.php?p=2365969#post2365969)
I just bought about $300 worth of assorted woodworking stuff. I started to order a bunch of it from the wooden boat store. I decide not to because of the censorship methods used lately. I actually debated it for a while and felt bad about not being more supportive but the fact is I can vote by leaving or vote with my pocketbook. A drop in the bucket but it's what I could do.




Probably the most important post in the last 6 months I hope someone is paying attention to these details.


Such a scumbag way to deal. Got no problems using their bandwidth while stiffing them on sales to protest being banned or censored. Even more a couple of these same scumbags went to another forum (SA) while banned or censored to Badmouth the WBF to another boating community.

I hope Scot takes all this into consideration when the next ban comes an hopefully decides its lifetime. I wouldn't argue if he banned you just for having the nerve to post it on his forum.

Joe (SoCal)
10-28-2009, 07:12 AM
Originally Posted by Tylerdurden http://www.woodenboat.com/forum/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.woodenboat.com/forum/showthread.php?p=2365911#post2365911)
The day he stops with the attacks is the day it will stop. Try that on for size or deal.
Ya sure :rolleyes:

brad9798
10-28-2009, 08:04 AM
Isn’t it interesting how everything around here turns into a pi$$ing match, or a mine is bigger than yours catfight?

That's, unfortunately, the first thing I noticed on this thread.

Joe- Give a rest.

Put away your tape measure! :rolleyes:

If we really want to get into the mine is bigger/better/faster/stronger/expensiver than yours arugument, I'd rather not ...

I did that quite a bit around here and EVERYONE here thought I sounded like a real a$$hole with a small p-n*s!

Think about it ...

TimH
10-28-2009, 10:58 AM
I just bought about $300 worth of assorted woodworking stuff. I started to order a bunch of it from the wooden boat store. I decide not to because of the censorship methods used lately.

I am curious where you get your sense of entitlement from.

So you have the god-given right to come into this forum that is sponsored and supported entirely by Wooden Boat Magazine. And if you cant get along with others and get banned you have to somehow retaliate against the provider of this service and STILL use the service?

WTF kind of mentality is that. :mad:


Wooden Boat OWES you NOTHING. The rest of the people in this forum OWE you nothing. If you dont like it get lost. :mad:

This is the same air of entitlement that has led the this country to the state it is in.

Chris Coose
10-28-2009, 11:40 AM
The Catboat association has a 6 domain discussion forum at their site.
http://www.catboats.org/discuss.php.
The last post was on 10/12/09.

Seems there are plenty of varieties of forum supports and like everything in existance, stuff comes and goes.

johnw
10-28-2009, 06:34 PM
I just bought about $300 worth of assorted woodworking stuff. I started to order a bunch of it from the wooden boat store. I decide not to because of the censorship methods used lately. I actually debated it for a while and felt bad about not being more supportive but the fact is I can vote by leaving or vote with my pocketbook. A drop in the bucket but it's what I could do.
Most of us who post on this forum have never been censored. If you want to post offensive stuff, get your own forum.

johnw
10-28-2009, 06:39 PM
www.plasticclassicforum.com (http://www.plasticclassicforum.com)

oh, I think those with interest will find a place to chat.


Good point. I suppose even a site for a particularly famous wooden class like Olin Stephens' Pilot Sloop would have difficulty. Make it plastic classics, and you've got enough scope to have plenty of participation.