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post #3 of Old 01-21-2004
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Newbie questions

I would break the bay up into three distinct areas. The south bay is huge and has mild winds and is unpopulated with boats. The north bay can be similar but is more interesting. The special part of SF Bay is inside the Golden Gate along the City front and over to Tiberon. In the summer the wind machine starts up and you will find 20 to 35 knots of wind every day. It,s a spectacular area for sailing and things to see. Expect to get wet and reef deeply.

I know people who never sail north of the Bay bridge because it''s too windy. They like the med style sailing and freek out at all that wind. Oh yea, it getts crowded in the main bay too.

Deep draft is prefered on the bay unless your harbor is one of the neglected undredged ones. Regardless of how high a boat can point it will slide sideways without a deep keel.

I would stay away from furling mains, I think they more work and slower to reef.

You are looking at a pretty large boat for your first sailboat. I understand why, but if a boat is too big it tends to not get used other than a floating condo. I know of a lot of large sailboats that never leave the dock because it''s too much work or too scary.

Jeff gave you great numbers on prop impact, but I generally think of it as 1/2 to 1 knot of boat speed improvement with a folding or feathering prop. The improvement is significant but so is the cost and maintenance. Don''t worry about the prop, you can change it later.

Good luck, have fun, look at lots of boats and pick one. You can always sell it and get something else.

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