Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: British Columbia
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Re: Pros and cons of steel sailboats
I have been watching this thread with interest it seems people think any steely under 40 feet wont sail.When I was a kid my parents bought a 37 foot steel yacht round bilge fin keeler we sailed 10 000 miles in it and it sailed really well reaching at 8 knots on a good day.A lovely yacht only problem was the wooden decks wet beds on passage every time.last year my father bought a 32 foot steel kuiper a dutch yacht with a big rig and bowsprit,I have an old quarter tonne racing yacht and if I dont keep my hull clean and boat light I cant catch him.I think possibly some are really overbuilt and that gives the rest of them a bad name.They arent all slow by a long shot.
What makes some overweight is misplaced priorities, and redundant structural steel, such as transverse framing , etc. The steel would be far more useful in plate thickness than in transverse framing with thinner plate to compensate. I have seen a Tahiti ketch with 3,000 lbs of framing , and 1/8th inch hull plate . Without the framing , 3/8th plate would weigh the same and be a lot tougher ,and more corrosion resistant. With only 1/8th plate against such hard points , the framing increases the odds of holing.
Before putting in more steel, one should look for something which is structurally doing the same thing.