Those are both good and thoughtful answers. I agree. Thankyou
It seems unfortunate though, in my opinion, that the smaller boats are getting short changed by the modern approach to sailboat design. Yes, they are producing faster and lighter boats in the 30 foot range, but not faster and safer long range cruisers in that size. The modern hull forms and their attached appendages cannot duplicate the speed and safety when ladened. Something that most marketers are not telling the buyers. There is a simple explanation why the lowly Westsail 32 is slow compared to some boats around the buoys. There is also a (slightly less) simple explanation why the same W-32 is faster than said boats when they are used for long distance voyaging. There are sailors out there who are truly looking for that smaller “go anywhere”, live aboard, cruiser. That is, under 35 feet. A Westsail 32, admittedly a 40 foot boat, is attractive partly because it is “smaller”.
I personally, would like to see the designers, producers, and marketers spend a little more time applying the modern technology to a better, safer, “go anywhere”, cruiser that doesn’t fall flat on its face in performance, comfort, and safety when fully, or over fully, ladened, or, when it hits the bottom in the lagoon at Aitutaki. It would also be appreciated if these same people told the truth about how cruising performance will be different than racing performance, even with the modern, fast, light weight boats.
Full vs. fin keel? I prefer what I have. The best that a designer can do is to design the best boat for what it is really going to be doing, at its extremes. And remember that there are people inside.
After thought: Would it have been more appropriate to have put this post in the "Shameless Plug" thread?
I think Jeff had already replied to that saying that makes sense to compare boats by its weight even if I think that weight by weight a modern boat is more seaworthy. Perhaps it still misses something to make things more clear and that is that makes also sense to compare boats by weight in what regards price.
So why should today designers be interested in making a very small seaworthy boat, like a Westsail 32, if for the same price they can make a 36/38 light modern boat that will have the same seaworthimess, a better wave passage (much longer LWL), will be much faster and will offer the same load capacity and much more interior space?
who between the two boats would chose the small heavy one? almost anybody