Join Date: Jul 2002
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Rob, as you might be aware, Earl Hinz retired from Douglas Aircraft (later gobbled up by Boeing) as an Aeronautical Engineer and turned to full-time Pacific cruising on HORIZON, a OI-41 (yes, one of the "originals") in the late 70''s/early 80''s. He has written a series of books, including several that remain in print today and are highly regarded (e.g. Pacific Landfalls). He modified his OI41 extensively, in part becuase of the nature of Pacific cruising but in part because of what the boat needed. He was very fond of the boat and did not find it lacking for serious offshore cruising nor liveaboard comfort. You''re quite right - it''s one of those boats that requires an ''acquired taste'' and many scoff at it in the context of today''s (or even the 90''s) designs. OTOH you have somewhat restricted resources for somewhat expansive goals, and IMO you''re asking the right questions.
One especially interesting aspect of Earl''s original fitting out of the 41 was due to his many Pacific Cup races (to Hawaii from Long Beach) and his aeronautical training. He concluded the boat was sailing much more poorly than it had the ability to when across and on the wind, and concluded this was mostly due to the high aspect sail plan given the shallow keel. Look at the sail plan of an OI41 and note that tall, skinny main. He borrowed a Catalina 25 (I think) main, reverse hanked it as a mizzen staysail in lieu of flying his main, and did a series of careful trials in LA Harbor - with mizzen staysail/no main, and main/no mizzen staysail. It was pretty fascinating reading IMO and he ended up having 2 mizzen staysails cut, to serve in lieu of the main when they headed offshore. Many, many years later he sold the boat with the original main, essentially unused. He pointed higher, it was an easier sail to handle in some respects, and he made less leeway. I guess my point is that all of us can mull and deliberate and study and, eventually, come up with creative ways to mitigate a given boat''s "issues". If you get an OI41, contact me and I''ll send you a copy of the article. Good reading...