Join Date: Apr 2003
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I single-hand my Island Packet 380 (39.5', 12 tons). My wife is usually aboard for coastal and inter-island sailing, but she has a bad back, and doesn't participate in the boat-handling part at all.
The boat is rigged for single-handing: roller furling 110% genoa, rf staysail, and mast-furling main. All lines lead to the cockpit. I installed a Garhauer solid boom vang so I can adjust it from the cockpit. There's a B&G autopilot on board that can tack the boat when I push the buttons. The anchor windlass has a rocker switch on the steering pedestal, and the anchor (a Delta) is self-launching, so I can do the anchoring solo, too. The rudder is attached to the keel by a "shoe", or strap, at the bottom, so lobster trap float lines skim right by the prop.
Being a heavy, full-keel boat, sailing in breezes under 7-8 kts can be a bit wearying, so I had an assymetrical spinnaker made, with an ATM snuffer and Tacker. Easy to set up, deploy, and sail by myself. The spin tack downhaul leads to the cockpit for control. So I don't need to motor in light winds 80 to 140 degrees apparent. I have a line-control whisker pole for sailing downwind with the genny. If I do end up motor-sailing upwind, the 56 hp Yanmar pushes her along easily, burning about 0.7 gph at 6 kts.
Most of my sailing time has been offshore or in the Tradewinds. Offshore, I've always had crew to help, but even at night, alone on watch, it's easy to reef down for a squall without needing to wake up anyone to help. The cutter rig is perfect for the sailing that I do. Enough sail combinations to match anything I've come up against. It's easy to balance the helm. And the boat heaves-to with little effort if I need to make lunch or whatever.
My previous boat was an ODay 222, with a 6 hp Johnson, and before that, a Hobie 16. The IP 380 was easy to get used to, nonetheless. I couldn't be more pleased with a boat. And Lynne loves the space below, queen size bunk, galley layout, and huge shower (with fold out doors) in the head.
Hope you find one that pleases you--it's a good market for boat-buying.