Well, norm, you noticed surely that talk wasn't of rep capping... something that most people don't try to do with their first crew.
Even so, in order to have a reasonable stab at the rep cap with three US elite repairers and seven engies with +10 repair base, you'll need no less than 200 vets on each. That gives 32.2 M repair true ability. Rest provided by BO, scout and gunners, if their repair is not too rubbish.
200 vets on ten sailors is already a tall order - I wouldn't recommend this as if it were nothing to do...
(NFcalc + calculator >> ingame repair display + intuition :D )