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  #21  
Old 04-01-2002
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ndsailor, thanks I will check out those boats.
Jeff, thanks I will also look into the boats you mention.

Since we are on the West Coast of Canada, some of those boats may be hard to find. You didn''t mention the Bayfield 25, they seem to be fairly common in our neck of the woods. Are you familiar with them at all?

p.s. I respect everyone''s opinions so please continue to give the great advice!

Akacake
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  #22  
Old 04-02-2002
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I know that these are a cult boat with a strong following but I am not a fan of the Bayfield 25. They have a reputation for being a bit under ballasted and certainly under canvassed. While I have next to no real first hand experience with these boats, I read a ''classic plastic'' review on these boat that was quite harsh of the boats sailing abilities. This is not about speed. When I talk about a boat that sails well, I mean that it handles a wide range of conditions well, that it points reasonably well, that it has good stability and can stand to its rig, that it is not plagued by gobs of weather helm, that it is good in stays and so on. From this article I concluded that the Bayfield is Okay in winds between 10-18 knots or so but does not do so well on either side of that narrow wind range.

I normally do not touch on aesthetics because aesthetics are so subjective, but I personally do not like ''character boat'' style aesthetics and hull forms. To explain what I mean by this, although this forum has me pegged as only a go fast kind of guy, the reality is that I am also into genuine traditional working water craft. I am probably one of the few people on this BB who actually routinely sail gaff riggers and genuine historic boats. I really do enjoy the aesthetics of sailing traditional watercraft, which is a very different experience than sailing on modern boats.

Traditional boats evolved from hard use and real life testing and resulted in hull forms and rigs that really are time tested for their purpose. It should be noted that often these designs reflect the severe limitations fo the materials available in a given area, large crew requirements, and the need to perform a very specific task in a very specific geography.

In the 1970''s ''Character'' boats started becoming very popular. Character boats are intended to look like a traditional water craft by adding various trappings that somewhat reflect an earlier period without being true to the design principles of that earlier period.

Maybe this is just me but I think if someone is going to build a traditional design, it should be true to the integrity and lessons learned by the real craft that they are replicating. To randomly insert traditional boat details into an otherwise fabricated from whole cloth hull design, really does nothing aesthetically (and perhaps sailing ability wise) for me. I emphasize that this is a subjective issue, but that is part of the reason that I am not a fan of the Bayfields 25''s.

Respectfully,
Jeff
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  #23  
Old 04-02-2002
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Hi Jeff,
Refering to the Bayfield 25 or other boats with similar characteristics, you said it will be ok in winds 10 to18 Kts. Do you mean reefing won''t help much after 18 Kts? Could you mean that you have to reef so much that the speed of the boat will be effected dispraportionatly, or what?

Dennis L.
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  #24  
Old 04-02-2002
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Hi Kelly,
One boat that comes to mind is a Pearson Renegade 27''
They have a fin keel and a balanced blade rudder underbody with a draft of about 4''6" a ballast of 6,750, beam of 8'' 6" and a capsize screen ratio of 1.82. The prices genaraly run from 7,000 to $15,000. Sloop rig. Production years ran from ''67 to ''69. She came with an inboard gas engine but alot have been converted to diesel.
They may be kind of hard to find around your neck of the sea but it would shurely be worth a look.

Dennis L.
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  #25  
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I response to your question "Do you mean reefing won''t help much after 18 Kts?", reefing becomes a kind of deminishing return. Heavy, high volume hulls without careful modeling have a tremendous amount of drag that results from their sheer amount of wetter surface and underwater volume. They also tend to have inefficient foils that tend to create a disproportionate amount of turbulance in relation to the lift generated as well. In moderate conditions, that combination simply means slower speeds and poorer pointing ability but if you are not concerned with speed that isn''t really a problem.

As the wind pipes up, it really takes a lot more stability to generate the needed drive. As the wind speed increases, a larger portion of the heeling is taking place because of the wind against the hull, rigging and tophamper. This is using up stability that could be used to stand up to the sail area that is needed to generate drive. At some point you end up needing to reef below the point that you are generating the necessary drive to make it to windward.

On an easily driven hull, this generally is not much of a problem. You reef a bit and you keep going. The force of a gust on a boat is absorbed in two ways; the boat heels a bit more and the boat accellerates using some of the energy being imparted. With an easily driven hull (whether light or heavy) a larger portion of the side load of the wind goes into forward motion and less into heeling.

When you compare that to a not very easily driven hull, you really can''t reef down as far as a more easily driven hull and still maintain good steerage and control, as well as be reliable in stays. That means you need to have substantially greater stability to carry proportionately more sail area, and to overcome the fact that you can''t burn off some heeling forces through acceleration. That kind of stability generally is not present on these character boats which often had less than a third of their weight in low density ballast carried quite high compared to a deeper keeled or more modern design.

If you look at even burdensome traditional water craft they were carefully modeled to minimize drag and be comparatively easily driven hulls. They carried very large sail plans carried low to minimize heeling.

When you look at some of the character boats, this fine art of hull modeling is ignored in an effort to stuff in more accomodations and in doing so the real virtues of a traditional vessel is lost and only the traditional look remains.

Respectfully,
Jeff

Jeff
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  #26  
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Hi Jeff,
Yes, thats what I meant. Now I''m going to print the post so I can have it. I haven''t quite found an answer to that question with that much intirety.Thanks... and... I DO very much enjoy your posts. Believe it or not!
With respect,

Dennis
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  #27  
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I own a ''67 Westerly 25 (outboard), and have sailed on a Centaur (inboard). Both are bilge keel boats. I like ''em. Yes, they are slow, but very strong, shoal draft, forgiving, and generally affordable. I have always felt safe on them.

When on a boat I am not in a hurry; I just want to get there safely. If you want fast, get a power driven vessel.

I like a tiller, ''cuz it''s easy to rig the auto-pilot when going to windward in light air. I motor frequently to windward in light air---the tiller is great for that.

The small Westerly''s are heavy displacement boats, but that translates into a gentler ride when the wind blows. They may not be excellent to windward, but they aren''t that bad either if you''ve got more than light air.(My first boat, a 1973 Aquarius 23'',was abysmal to windward)

Hey, I don''t care what anyone says. The Centaur had a production run of 2500 or so (a hugely successful production run). Find It was a strong, expensive, well-made boat, but couldn''t compete in the long run with cheaper (and more cheaply made) production boats.

If you find a Centaur in satisfactory condition (hire a surveyor, it''ll be worth it for your peace-of-mind) at a satisfactory price to you, pick it up and enjoy it with your young kids. It''ll take care of you.

I suspect like me, you''ll discover over time there is no ideal boat. Like the comment about cars. What''s the best car? Whatever car you''ve got that''s paid for.

I owned an 1973 Aquarius 23'' as my first boat, then the 1967 Westerly 25''. Loved them both for what they were.

Now I''ve teamed up with two others on a 1988 cutter-rigged Pacific Seacraft Dana 24 (another small heavy displacement boat with a tiller.

However, I''ll always look back on the tremendous times my family (wife and two sons)had on the Westerly. It''s been a great boat.

As a last comment, for my money, I would gladly pay a premium for a newer or rebuilt engine, especially on an older boat. Knowing I will be motoring more frequently in a heavy displacement boat, I want a good, reliable engine.



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  #28  
Old 04-04-2002
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If you havnt allready bought the 26 I know of a couple of wetsnails for sale in the philadelphia area I am friends with the owners. I could hook ya''ll up
cole
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  #29  
Old 04-05-2002
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Hi, If you are looking for good solid boats in that price range ($8-$14k) then you might want to take a look at a Watkins 27.. They are solid little boats that have an amazing amount of room for a 27 footer. The usually come with wheel steering and diesel engines (I would look for one with the venerable Yanmar 2QM15). They are sometimes referred to as a "poor mans " Island Packet as they are similar looking in a lot of ways. They are a sort of "modified" shoal keel and only draw 3''8". I''m not sure how many there are up in Canada as they were produced in Florida and are ideal for the thin waters on the East Coast where you find most of them. Since they are a shoal keel they don''t point as high as some other boats, but just fall off the wind just a bit and she can make a good turn of speed.

So, no, I wouldn''t be racing her too much, but if I had my family on board when the winds and the seas were picking up, I would still feel very comfortable and she "keeps on her feet" pretty well. Another thing about this boat is that quite a few things like spars and rigging are "oversized" relative to other boats her size, which adds a margin of safety.

I have a few pictures that I had posted when I was selling her (its already been sold) one also shows me on my way through the "Gut" on the way to "Block Island"

http://home.att.net/~tom.senator/Sailing.jpg

http://home.att.net/~tom.senator/index.html

And here is a Site dedicated to Watkins that has lots of links and pictures

http://watkins.realshell.com/

Just another boat to look into
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  #30  
Old 04-05-2002
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Thanks to all!

This has been a very informative thread for me! I have learned lots and have now looked into many boats I had never heard of!

I will be in touch I am sure with more questions on the boats I am also looking at now

Kelly
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