Small cruiser/racer cockpits - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 5 Old 09-01-2006 Thread Starter
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Small cruiser/racer cockpits

I'm trying to decide on an appropriate, older, small (28-30') boat for use on the Great Lakes. I'm mostly a day sailor, but want to do occasional overnights. In daysailing it's nice to comfortably fit 4-5 people in the cockpit. For overnights & cruising I'd like at least a 6' headroom. So far I haven't found any web sites or information comparing boats in this size in terms of cockpit length or headroom.

Any advice or suggestions on boats to investigate?
Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 5 Old 09-02-2006
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Some possibilities


You didn't give a budget, so I'll try to keep the boats 'cheap'.

Some possiblities include:
Newport 28 - I bought one in 2004 and I'm happy with it. Plenty of room in the cockpit and may family of 5 does over night trips
O'day 28 - similar to the Newport. IMHO, the Newport is nicer
Catalina 27 (may be a little small on the inside)
Catalina 30 - great boat but more $$ than the others
Sabre 28 - nice, but expensive

And a few others.

Good luck,
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post #3 of 5 Old 09-02-2006 Thread Starter
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capsize ratio

Thanks. I'm figuring in the $15-30K range depending on size and how its equipped.

I think most of the ones you suggest have a pretty high capsize ratio. Wouldn't that be a concern on Lake Superior or other Great Lakes?

I tend to use when considering boats that come up for sale, but don't find cockpit length or headroom there.
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post #4 of 5 Old 09-02-2006
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For the record, the capsize screen factor and the motion comfort index tell you next t nothing about the likelihood that a boat is going to capsize or have a comfortable motion. Both of these formulas were developed at a time when boats were a lot more similar to each other than they are today. These formulas have limited utility in comparing boats other than boats which are otherwise are extremely similar.

To explain, neither formula contains almost any of the real factors that control motion comfort or seaworthiness. Neither formula contains such factors as the vertical center of gravity or buoyancy, neither contains weight distribution or buoyancy distribution, and neither contains any data on dampening all of which really are the major factors that control motion comfort or likelihood of capsize. Weight alone has next to no bearing on motion comfort and stability.

I typically give this example to explain just how useless and dangerously misleading these formulas can be. If we had two boats that were virtually identical except that one had a 500 pound weight at the top of the mast. (Yes, I know that no one would install a 500 lb weight at the top of the mast but, for example, heavy decks, spars, shallow draft, low density ballasting etc, can easily have that kind of impact.) The boat with the weight up its mast would appear to be less prone to capsize under the capsize screen formula, and would appear to be more comfortable under the Motion Comfort ratio. Nothing would be further than the truth. That is why I see these formulas as being worse than useless.


Last edited by Jeff_H; 09-02-2006 at 11:58 PM.
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post #5 of 5 Old 09-03-2006
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I bought a 1988 Cal 33 in Michigan. Quite a popular boat on the Great Lakes as a club racer.
Removed the stern rail and had a stainless shop add stern rail seats.
Best Seats in the House!! After some other updates sailed it to the
Caribbean. What a great trip........
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