sailingdog: what type of boat do you call home? I'd really like to learn more about your sailing experiences, having noticed and appreciated your comments to many other posts.
here are a couple of more specific questions: some places I read that having a certain amount of nylon rode attached to your chain rode reduces the "shock load", yet elsewhere, I read that cruisers will want an all chain rode. What do you think, and why. Also: are there ways that a fin keel/spade rudder can be made more seaworthy - so many of the more recent boats I look at don"t even sport a skeg - I understand the comments about the market going more toward comfort, beaminess, speed for coastal sailing, but are there other innovations that allow for this design to better weather blue water? For example, the loss of directional stability in large seas: is there some way of deploying a sea anchor, or series drogue, that helps compensate for this?
Or am I simply showing my lack of understanding on these matters?