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Old 05-01-2008
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What's wrong with a sugar scoop?

Hi all. I am a new sailor, bought a Pearson 323 after diligently searching this website, and sailed it this winter down to the Bahamas for 3 months. Loved sailing, the boat is as represented here but too small. Plans are for a Caribbean cruiser. All options are on the table, from a Pearson 424 to a 38'-40' cat to something like a Beneteau with a sugar scoop stern. I've heard a lot against them, and have developed a bias against them and don't even know why. (Typical of so many of my biases) Anyway, what is wrong with them, or right. Please no biases expressed without knowledge. This type of boat would open up many more options. Remember Caribbean, not offshore at this point. If you want to suggest any other boats, the budget is what it takes, up to $150,000. I like Island Packet 35-38 for the room, but have heard they don't sail very well.
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Old 05-01-2008
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There was a thread recently on the whole sugar scoop thing. Mine has one - but it has high enough freeboard that I am not too concerned of the negativities. The only time I would think maybe one is not desirable is if you have low freeboard and the scoop literally has access to the cockpit. Otherwise I, do not think to much bias can be made against them....
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Old 05-01-2008
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Dwight,

To make sure we're all on the same page, when you say "sugar scoop" presumably you are referring to a reverse transom with one or more swim steps molded in. If so, you should have plenty of choices if a sugar scoop is what you want -- it is the most common stern nowadays and has been for a while.

This kind of stern has a lot to commend it. They are great for getting on and off the boat, particularly from the dinghy. Also, they are very handy if you like to swim from your boat. Often times these sugar scoop transoms will have storage lockers built into them as well, which are especially handy for storing gasoline jugs, spare propane tanks, etc. since vapors will spill outside the boat.

On the downside, for a given length boat, a sugar scoop (or any reverse transom for that matter) will be a "smaller" boat than a similar length boat with a traditional stern and comparable beam. That is to say, quite a bit of potential interior volume is forfeited because the reverse rake of the stern is essentially lost space and the cockpit as well as accommodations must be shifted forward.

If somebody were looking for the smallest boat possible that would fit their needs, I would steer them away from any reverse transom (or canoe stern) for this reason -- in a small boat too much interior volume is sacrificed. Once you get up into larger boats for many people the advantages of the sugar scoop are well worth the trade-off. But you still have to be mindful when comparing boats of different lengths vis a vis overall value. A 40 foot traditional sterned boat will usually have quite a bit more cockpit stowage, deck space, and interior volume than a 40 footer with a reverse transom. So it's not exactly apples to apples.

Another downside of reverse transoms, especially those that incorporate swim steps, is that their aft cabins tend to be very noisy at anchor. If there is a swim step, the transom scoop is usually carried very low, almost down to the waterline. This allows any small waves to slap slap slap on the flatish underside of the hull. If the boat has an aft cabin, this noise can get very wearisome, even when the waves are only slightly larger than ripples. (Not all sugar scoop boats have this problem, but many do.)

These are just a few of my general observations. As for biases, I have to confess that I don't prefer the aesthetics of reverse transoms in general, and especially sugar scoops. But more than likely I will own one some day...
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NEVER CALLS CRUISINGDAD BACK....CAN"T TAKE THE ACCENT

Last edited by JohnRPollard; 05-01-2008 at 10:30 PM. Reason: clarity
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Old 05-01-2008
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I have a "small" boat with a sugar scoop stern and have sailed large boats with them. Really good for loading and unloading from the dink (why I love 'em). Biggest negative (maybe the only one, IMHO) is that in rough weather at anchor or a mooring they act like a freakin' drum, so if the sterns getting pounded I've been forced to sleep in the salon.

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Old 05-01-2008
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Originally Posted by capttb View Post
Biggest negative (maybe the only one, IMHO) is that in rough weather at anchor or a mooring they act like a freakin' drum, so if the sterns getting pounded I've been forced to sleep in the salon.
That's what I'm talkin' about!!!
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Pacific Seacraft Crealock 31 #62

NEVER CALLS CRUISINGDAD BACK....CAN"T TAKE THE ACCENT
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Old 05-01-2008
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Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice
OHHHH MY GOD!!!!!!!!!

WE'RE ALL GONNA DIE !!!!!!!!!!!!!


WE'RE ALL GONA DIE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I HAVE A SUGAR SCOPPER, AND LOOK!!!!!!!!! IT HAS A BIG HOLE...

OHHH MY GOD..NO....

WATER IS GONNA INVADE US AND WE'RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!!

WE'RE ALL DROWNING IN THE COCKPIT

BUAAAAAAAA

BUAAAAAAAA




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I'm really surprised that thing even floats!!

Looks like a two-cupper!
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Pacific Seacraft Crealock 31 #62

NEVER CALLS CRUISINGDAD BACK....CAN"T TAKE THE ACCENT
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I love the sugar scoop for loading and unloading. If a wave fills the cockpit I don't need to worry about the scuppers slowly draining or hoses becoming disconnected. And to me there is a big safety advantage in case of man overboard. Everything I have seen about man overboard indicates that many people have drowned after they are located, because it is so hard to bring them aboard a high freeboard boat with a conventional transom. At best it is a difficult maneuver, especially for a shorthanded crew (read "my wife") with a rather oversized victim (me, for example). With the sugar scoop, all I have to do is lift the helmsman's seat and a person can be slid right aboard.
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Originally Posted by JohnRPollard View Post
I'm really surprised that thing even floats!!

Looks like a two-cupper!

Want to bet you'll sink faster than me???
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Old 05-02-2008
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Originally Posted by tweitz View Post
And to me there is a big safety advantage in case of man overboard.... With the sugar scoop, all I have to do is lift the helmsman's seat and a person can be slid right aboard.
This would work only in very calm conditions. You should consider having another standard plan in place for rough conditions (when you are more likely to experience a man over board). The stern of a boat is a nasty dangerous place to try to board in any kind of seaway. Alongside at the midship boarding gate is usually recommended, with a hoist assist if necessary.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Giulietta View Post
Want to bet you'll sink faster than me???
No bets, unless there's ramming involved, then I'll take it!!!
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Pacific Seacraft Crealock 31 #62

NEVER CALLS CRUISINGDAD BACK....CAN"T TAKE THE ACCENT
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