I am the happy owner of one of the design''s Jeff has mentioned, a Hood 38, built by Wauquiez. It is the sistership to the Bristol 38.8 and Little Harbor 38.
I chose this boat after careful consideration (including a great deal of help from Jeff). Initially, a K/Cb design meant a little more maintenance...really nothing more than inspecting the cable every season and cutting off and corroded pieces and re-attaching. I talked with other owners and found the advantages were really terrific and far outweighed any disadvantages.
First and foremost, the Ted Hood (ok, Dieter) designed K/CB keel is efficient enough for it to sail the boat on all points of sail without any use of the CB at all. In fact, the Hood 38 will point to 30 degree apparent with no trouble without the board. Using the board gives races a definate advantage as they can control and modify the foil in the underbody and gives offshore sailors a greater ability to go to weather. Cruising sailors favor these designs for their 4.5 ft draft....it also comes in handy on the Ches Bay and FLA. Finally, the encapsulated ballast means that you will not risk a keel crashing through the canoe underbody and sink the boat (this in fact happened to a Catalina 27 on the Bay last year), and there will never be any leaking keelbolts to take care of.
I could not be happier. The boat is perfectly dry and sails great. It indeed is a well known bluewater boat and sought after by offshore cruisers. You will also see K/CB underbodies on such high end boats as Alden, Hinckley and Little Harbor (ok, no surprise there
Best to all