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Old 01-23-2002
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SailorMitch SailorMitch is offline
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Winged Keels Pros & Cons

Here''s my experience based on 13 years of owning a Pearson 27 with a winged keel.

Advantage:
Shoal draft is hard to beat!

Disadvantages:
If you go aground, all that area of the wing will stick like glue to the bottom. You can''t heel the boat to reduce draft -- that makes it worse in fact. You have to keep the boat level to get it off. So be careful with depth!

You lose pointing ability with the design of most common cruising winged keels.

It''s a pain to paint under the wing, and to keep that surface fair.

I wrapped the anchor rode around the keel once, or actually the boat did it with a change in wind. I was able to straighten it out in good order, but you have more angles and appendages down there to snag stuff.

Have to take more care in blocking the boat on the hard to protect the wings.

By now you are probably wondering with all the negatives. What I should''ve said upfront is that the shoal draft is well worth all those disadvantages to me. But it''s your choice. Seems to me that more boats today are using bulbs to achieve the shoal draft to get around at least some of the negatives.

Mitch
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