Originally Posted by HappyPappy
What makes a boat "blue water" worthy? I'm looking for a specific set of criteria that can be used to evaluate almost any boat to determine if it is "blue water" worthy.
You've gotten some good answers already, but the bottom line is that boaters of all sorts have been debating this question for a very long time. Probably since the first cave man fashioned a paddle, sat on top of a log, and set out across the water. There is no simple answer, and there is no universally-agreed-upon set of criteria. Everyone has their own opinion. And anyone who gives you their opinion, and tells you that it is the one and only true and valid opinion, is simply full of BS.
What's more, don't forget that the Atlantic has been crossed many times in boats less than 20' long, including open boats and rowboats. Or that Captain Bligh sailed more than 3,500 miles across the South Pacific in an open, 23' boat overloaded with 18 men. That was clearly a "blue water" voyage, but hardly comfortable cruising. So the answer really depends--to a HUGE extent--on what you consider important, what you are willing to put up with, and what you are willing to trade off. And only you can answer those questions.