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Old 10-27-2009
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Best Trailerable 22-24' Boat?

After wondering/pondering and scratching my head...I finally decided to buy a small weekender/cruiser - something 22-24' LOA with a Trailer. I would prefer fixed keel over swing keel as I don't want problems out on the water.
I will be sailing in single-handed 95% of time onwindy, west coast water- March to October - colder, wetter conditions on Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada.
I will likely not take trips longer than 1 week if I can trailer to sites.

Would really love to hear from owners with ideas on fixed vs swing keel and what boats they recommend based on experience.
Also, what type of trailer/transportation problems have occurred to owners?

This will be my first sailboat.

Much appreciated.
Islandboy
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Old 10-28-2009
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There are always plenty of different opinions about keel types, but if you're planning to actually keep the boat on a trailer when you're not sailing it, you may want to give the swing keelers another chance. That shallow draft with the keel up makes it a lot easier to launch and haul.

There are all kinds of boats in that size range, but some of them will be pushing the limit of relatively feasible trailerability, so sticking to the smaller/lighter boats in the range might help.

The Catalina 22 is one of the most common, and with the pop-top cabin, can be moderately comfortable for spending a few days aboard. There are plenty of others; you might try a forum search for "trailer sailor" or "trailerable".
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Old 10-28-2009
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2ndWind: thanks.....seems like most of my search/short-listing of boats out west has swing keels on Columbia 22', Chrysler 22', Cat. 22, O'Day 22, Balboa 21', Lancers,
Keeping an open mind on Swing keels....and ease of launching down ramps and hauling...etc....good advice
cheers - Islandboy
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Old 10-28-2009
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Yes, ramp launching will be much easier with a swing keel, however you do give up something vs a fixed keel, esp in the area you are planning to use it.

There are some fixed keel boats with shoal draft such as a Shark24 (3 ft) and they're light enough to trailer without a serious truck, but ramp launching becomes an issue if the ramp is not steep. Extending trailer tongues help here, and also many BC communities have public wharves with small 5 ton cranes - in many cases (sometimes for a modest fee - btw not all ramps are free either) you can use that crane to lift a boat off the trailer and drop it in the water. Some are manually operated and are usually free (it can be a workout) but nowadays more and more of them have been motorized.
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Old 10-28-2009
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Also, consider mast raising

Depending on how often you splash and who's there to help, hoisting and lowering the mast can be an issue. I've heard tales not so much of crashes but twisted/buckled standing rigging that led to early replacement.

Some designs address this issue. MacGregor has a gin pole that's built in. Catalina uses an extensible crane built into the trailer ahead of the bow.
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Old 10-28-2009
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It's a little smaller than your range and VERY hard to find, but... if BEST small fixed-keel sailboat for PNW is the brief, I'd look for a Wilderness 21. It's a freak. Has crossed oceans. Only 1870 lbs, so one person could launch it -- but it's like a mini Contessa 32. Despite a 57% ballast ratio, it's fast (PHRF 219) as a San Juan 24. Which would be a good second choice.
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Old 10-28-2009
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Look at Beneteau 235's. These boats have a great rep for sailing qualities, they built several hundred, and there is a great web site for questions and information. My personal opinion it is one of the best pocket cruisers ever built.
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Old 10-28-2009
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What about a Santana 2023A? There's a well equipped one on the Vancouver craigslist at the moment, no idea if it's in your budget or not though.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobmcgov View Post
It's a little smaller than your range and VERY hard to find, but... if BEST small fixed-keel sailboat for PNW is the brief, I'd look for a Wilderness 21. It's a freak. Has crossed oceans. Only 1870 lbs, so one person could launch it -- but it's like a mini Contessa 32. Despite a 57% ballast ratio, it's fast (PHRF 219) as a San Juan 24. Which would be a good second choice.
The Wilderness 21 is a very neat boat, but really,, nothing like a Contessa 32.

It's a Carl Shumacher design that handles and feels (except for the space below) like a much larger boat . I've sailed on the one that did the minitransat and transpacs with then-18yr old Amy Boyer at the helm. This boat (Little Rascal) spent 20 years in Squamish BC but sold some time back, I believe to somewhere in the prairies. It is a cool boat but deepish draft for regular trailer launching.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobmcgov View Post
It's a little smaller than your range and VERY hard to find, but... if BEST small fixed-keel sailboat for PNW is the brief, I'd look for a Wilderness 21. It's a freak. Has crossed oceans. Only 1870 lbs, so one person could launch it -- but it's like a mini Contessa 32. Despite a 57% ballast ratio, it's fast (PHRF 219) as a San Juan 24. Which would be a good second choice.
As I've said before and I repeat. A real blue water sailor can sail almost anything across an ocean. A real sailor and I must add a very beautiful young women, sailed her Wildernes 21 "Lil Rascal" across the Atlantic around 1980 and survived due to her graceful tenatious love of what she was doing. I remember Amy Boyer when she was over due on a race to the Farralon Islands and the next morning we found her still sailing her Wilderness 21 freezing and partially swamped outside the Golden Gate determined to at least finish on her own.
And now gentle readers, my $.02 suggestion for a trailable boat with potential for modifications for ocean sailing is a Rob Roy 23. Not only does she have the potential to sail well, but she is real pretty. That alone makes her not only a pleasure to look at, but pleasure to have her perform.
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