Best boat features for sailing in Boston? - SailNet Community

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Old 02-18-2007
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Best boat features for sailing in Boston?

I'm looking to buy a sail boat in the 25-30 foot range to sail out of Boston, mostly day sailing, maybe some cruising to Cape Cod. Essentially, I'm trying to find out what sort of weather and wind is to be found in and around Boston, and what would be the best kind of hull / rig to get.
Should I get a full keel or will it be too slow around Mass' bay?
Shoal draft to poke around in between the islands, or is a full keel better?
Short rig, or are the winds here light enough to get a taller rig?

And if anyone can point me towards a 25-30 foot boat with a V-berth, enclosed head (maybe even with a shower) and 6' of head room and maybe an inboard engine set up, that would be great.
Thanks!
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Old 02-19-2007
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A relatively inexpensive starter-boat with the characteristics you outline might be a Pearson 30 or Tartan 30. These are older designs, but they're generally put together well enough and sail well enough in the light air of Mass. Bay summers. Catalina 30's offer a lot of room, if you can find one at the right price. They are a lot more boat than the first two, so operating a Catalina 30 may be more difficult at first, and possibly more expensive, with more stuff to play with on board. Going for a tall rig enables you to reef if the wind picks up. Having a stumpy rig means starting the engine sooner when the wind dies.
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Old 02-19-2007
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We've been sailing/racing/cruising around Boston for three years, after sailing on Lake Ontario for three. It is challenging and exciting and we love it- wouldn't trade it for anything now that we are used to it.

Weather varies/wind varies....We have a full keel on our 35' boat. You don't really need a shoal draft up here- plenty of deep water. We've sailed from the North Shore to the Islands and Buzzards Bay and race regularly in Hingham Bay. Make sure to spend the money and get a great GPS set-up- couldn't do without one.

As for boats, we've loved our 35' C&C, but are now looking for something a little bigger. Wouldn't hesitate to recommend an older C&C at all, if you can find one. (We'll put ours on the market soon, but it may be more boat than you want)

Good luck on your search- maybe we'll see you out there this summer!
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Old 02-19-2007
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k1vsk will become famous soon enough
Nothing that unique about Boston Harbor

There isn't anything specific to Boston Harbor or Mass Bay/Buzzards Bay that should drive your decision. We've sailed around these areas for decades and have seen virtually every type boat - the determining factor is more how you plan to use the boat rather than where. For the area you describe, the predominant coastal cruisers are Hunter, beneteau or Catalina, any of which will provide the comforts you listed.
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Old 02-20-2007
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I think that 35' C&C might be more boat than I want, I'm still trying to figure out where to keep the boat. I presume you moor it in Hingham? Where in Hingham?
Cheers
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Old 02-20-2007
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MacGregor 26, the best on or under the water
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Old 02-20-2007
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Weather? We have it all...

I like the Tartan 30 suggestion...look at the Pearson 10m as well, both are affordable and good boats for these waters. Agree that you don't need a wing keel and you'll be glad for a deeper draft for pointing and when in the chop. I sailed a Pearson 30 (wing keel) for a number of years and boy did it take time gettin' there! I have a 6.5' keel on my P37 and have no problems.
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Old 02-20-2007
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RE: 35' C&C Mk I

We keep her in Hull, Mass (Hingham in the winter). We bought her in upstate NY - she was sailed on Lake Ontario for 30+ years before bringing her out here. Love her, but with too many family members to count, all wanting to be on the boat in the summer, we're looking for something bigger. We've been steadily upgrading her and she's in great shape. If seriously interested, send a message! Cheers- Curt
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Old 02-21-2007
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I'd love to buy a 35', but I think it might be too much boat for me now. I'm still trying to figure out where to moor whatever I do wind up getting. I have a feeling that finding a spot within Boston is next to impossible, so I'm thinking of going further outside the city. By the way, if you ever need someone to crew with you - let me know.
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Old 02-21-2007
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boat for bost on harbor?

That's my wife trying to sell my C&C 35 from right from under me, can you believe that! She wants more cabin room, I like to race, what is one to do? sacrifice?

If your not really concerned about performance , there is a lot of options out there but if your trying to get some accomidations for the significant other, get ready to to give up some performance.

Light winds are common in boston Harbor so I would reccomend you get something with a sail plan to move it. A full keel will be slower as well as something with heavy displacement relative to length. Full keels are not to good at maneuvering without good momentum, they are bad combination with light winds and lose a lot of boat speed when being turned.

Draft is not too much of a concern but if you intention is in hingham bay, you will need to be conscious of tide & depth if your draft exceeds 6ft and you like to go outside the marks. Having no idea where you have sailed before there is a 10-12ft tide change which you may want to consider.

There are alot of ways for you to get out sailing in the harbor without making the boat commitment yet. I would suggest you look into PHRF racing, someone is always looking for crew and it's a good way to see how boats perform in a variety of conditions and get a feel for the harbor. Check out Mass sailing & Hingham Bay PHRF. Join the crew bank.

Selecting a boat: Mid to early 80's 26 to 30 feet of tartan, pearson, C&C , even catalina will give you a well rounded boat for all the conditions for coastal sailing. Saber 28, look at a saber 28 it's an all round fit , pretty classic too. All of these are affordable and reliably built. I'm partial to C&C ( C&C 27) especially if cruising comfort is not a concern. If you get below 27ft, it will be a day sailor clearly and not much fun to stretch over a weekend unless your expectation of comfort is equal to climbing Everest.

Budget will drive everything so your going to need to find a home quickly for that boat. If your hopes are a dock, get ready to shell out at least 3 to 4 grand. Moorings are the best but availibility will be the concern. I would start calling the clubs & towns in the area.
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