Someone, somewhere within this thread called me an elitist, hence my using it again.
So the facts (as we know them now - and thanks for clearing this up with me).
1. The Mac was being motored in calm conditions
2. No water ballast - so far the owner was operating within design limits.
3. A dinghy was thrown from the foredeck, and got stuck in the standing rigging - representing, like 4 square meters, max, of additional windage?
4. The boat capsized, and did not right itself until touching ground.
IMHO the water ballast MUST fill positively immediately after the boat is in the water, as the above scenario should never ever be allowed to happen, even if the skipper forgot to lash the dinghy down - he does not seem to be an idiot, as he apparently only forgot that?
I'm NOT trying to scorn people, but the different videos and sales collateral showing a Mac in heavy weather, scares the sh.t out of me, as I've had students from the sailing school come back with the impression that they could safely sail these boats in all weather, as we do with 24' folkboats - So all I'm trying to do is learn enough to be able to help these people. My advice from what I've read and learned sofar is clear.
Good luck on the bigger boat, and fair winds
BTW I do not have hot water nor a grill, and sailed for many years without and engine
OK Joms ...
I generally try to stay out of the MacGregor wars that seem to appear on this board more than anywhere else. Your initial post, along with your self-ascribed label of "elitist" sucked me in.
Mac owners are often the target of scorn from people that know very little about the design, have never owned one or spent any time on one. I respect everybody that offers an informed opinion. I'm sick `n tired of Mac bashers that really don't know what they are talking about.
For what its worth: The Mac 26X & 26M models are hybrid powersailors. They are designed to fill a niche market and sell quite well. They are both an OK sailboats and an OK powerboat. Most owners like to keep the ballast empty while the boat is being used as a powerboat and the water ballast is supposed to be full while sailing. The designer/builder states that the ballast must be filled when under sail.
I live in central Wisconsin and have immediate access to scores of inland lakes that are fun to sail on. I have ready access to Lake Michigan and find I spend more time on the big lake than anywhere else lately. The Mac 26M was an ideal boat for my family when we bought it and has been for a number of years. I also sail solo more often than with crew aboard. (I'm retired and my wife `n sailing buddies are not.)
I also sail on a Catalina 30 and race on a Pearson Flyer. I know what my Mac lacks as a sailboat but I also know how to get the most out of her.
Hey, I would be happy to agree to disagree on this topic. Just try to know what is being talked about when you arrive at the discussion.
As a footnote to the original knockdown story ... it was also reported that the owner was planning on selling the boat and had already cancelled the insurance coverage. So was this an incident where a poor boat design was the primary factor in being knocked down or was this a really unlucky (stupid) guy that just happened to be on a boat when he auditioned for the Darwin awards.
Later friend ... My wife wants to start cruising the Great Lakes and says we need a bigger boat, one that doesn't heel as much and has a hot water shower. You know, one of those "real" sailboats that has a full kitchen in it and a grill on the back rail.