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zAr 01-15-2010 02:56 PM

CS30 for Solo Nonstop Circumnavigation via Cape Horn?
I've already asked this on the owners list and got some pretty good responses but thought I'd also put the question here and see what happens.

I have a CS30 which I recently bought with the intention of sailing Lake Ontario.

Now I'm looking at it and wondering...with considerable upgrading can it be used for a solo circumnavigation? 300+ days nonstop, singlehanded, avoiding Panama and Suez, via the Southern Ocean, rounding Capes Horn and Good Hope? What are your thoughts? Do you know of any specific weaknesses?

Someone shared a story where the hull/deck joint separated and the mast pumped in heavy weather. Others thought the hull shape and fin keel may not be ideal. That's the kind of useful info I'd be interested in.

Also, bearing in mind that my search range would be limited to the great lakes area and budget would be $50k CAD, which boat would you vote as a more likely candidate?

sailingdog 01-15-2010 03:21 PM

The major weakness of the CS30 for a voyage like that is stowage. I don't think you can store 300+ days worth of food aboard, and if you're not stopping, you're probably going to starve.

While a CS30 might be suitable, properly upgraded, for a circumnavigation, it probably is a lousy choice for a NON-STOP circumnavigation attempt. If you do a non-stop circumnavigation that passes through the antipodal points, then you're looking at a minimum of 24,000 NM of travel.

If you figure, on a good day, the CS30, which has a hull speed of about 6.7 knots...and would be lucky to do 5 knots on average.... you're looking at about 100 nm a day or 240 days of sailing. Figure a half-gallon of water a day, and you're looking at a minimum of 150 gallons of water alone, adding 25% for safety margin. That's 1300 lbs or so of water. Now, food—if you figure on three meals a day with some snacks, you're looking at about two-to-three pounds of food a day, unless you're talking about extremely concentrated high-calorie foods like emergency rations. Call it 2.5 lbs x 240 days x 1.5 for spoilage and emergencies.... that's 900 lbs. of food.

That's over 2000 lbs. for food and water on a boat that displaces only 8000 according to its specifications. That doesn't count the tools, clothing, gear, emergency spares, fuel or personal items that you would probably want/need along for a non-stop voyage.

Now, you might think that you can get a watermaker and use that... but prudent sailors would still carry enough water to finish their voyage without relying on the watermaker, cause if it dies on you, and you don't have enough water along, you're DEAD. Besides, watermakers are complicated, failure-prone beasties, especially on a smaller boat that doesn't have the stowage to carry spare parts.

zAr 01-15-2010 04:42 PM

SailingDog, you aren't kidding. I would be tossing the engine, holding tank and fuel tank, replacing them with freshwater tanks. The boat is currently about an inch below the waterline with full tanks and the engine, I guesstimate I would have room for about 900 lbs of supplies before I displace to the waterline and can probably push to an inch above it on the assumption the boat will get lighter as I go. I find I can live on 32 gallons of fresh water a month, less if I supplement seawater for dishes, etc., but the watermaker will likely be a super critical component anyway.

But yes, I don't know exactly how much square footage dehydrated meal packs would take up, especially for 240-300 days. I'll have to build storage space but yes, there's the issue of tools, replacement parts, etc. I'd probably end up measuring and weighing every little nut and bolt.

I could really use the experience of anyone who has done the same sort of trip.

Michael K 01-15-2010 05:09 PM

Why not simply revise your circumnavigation a bit. Sir Francis Chichester stopped once in Sydney Australia which, I'm certain, would make your plans much more plausible. Given he was underway for a total of 226 days and Gypsy Moth IV is 54' LOA, you should feel no shame in such a modification.

blt2ski 01-15-2010 05:55 PM

I'm not going to say never, as anything with proper planning is possible.

With that in mind, while it is in French, I keep thinking in the past I have seen an english conversion, a blog about a french man that did what you are toying with in a Jeanneau Sun Rise 34. This boat was built between 1984 and 1989.

Alain Maignan fait son tour du monde - page 7 |

Some food for thought to add to the nay sayers, with a yeah vote/possibility


sailingdog 01-15-2010 06:28 PM

The problem with dehydrated foods is that if you are limited on water, they're useless. Canned foods, especially pre-cooked ones like beef stew or canned pasta mixes, can often be eaten cold...dehydrated foods can't really be eaten without reconstituting them.

catamount 01-15-2010 08:35 PM

You should read Jesse Martin's book "Lionheart" -- he did a non-stop solo circumnavigation on an S&S 34 (at the time the youngest to do it).

Robin Knox Johnston's boat Suhaili was 32' (he was the first to do it).

Of course, more telling than length would be displacement.

FWIW, you don't need to carry a year's worth of fresh water with you from the beginning -- you can make fresh water along the way (if you have enough fuel), or more realistically capture rainfall to refill your supplies.

Maybe not non-stop circumnavigations, but there have been a lot of other very impressive voyages in even smaller boats (e.g. "My Old Man and the Sea" by David and Daniel Hays).

edit: another book to read -"Tinkerbelle" by Robert N. Manry

So yeah, I think it could be in the realm of possibility. Obviously it would require a lot of thought and careful planning.

If you get serious about something like this, you should definitely talk to Bruce Schwab and others who've done it, like Tony Gooch.

Good Luck!

zAr 01-17-2010 01:33 AM

Michael K: Unfortunately it wouldn't be much of a record if I did stop. :)

Blt2ski and Catamount: Good tips and links, thanks, I'll follow up on those.

SailingDog: Good point, I hadn't thought of that. See, that's the kind of thinking I'm looking for. I'll have to rejig my calculations to take that into consideration, see if it's doable...

wind_magic 01-17-2010 01:53 AM

Not to wander too far from the OP's original point, but I think diet will be the hardest part of the journey. All those dry pasta meals look great on paper, but try eating them for a few days in a row, that is about how long it takes for all the salt in them to make it feel like your skin is trying to crawl off of you. I think it would take quite a lot of changes for most people to be able to cook well enough to survive for a year at sea without stopping for supplies. No matter how much you think you like Bush's baked beans, at some point you're not going to be able to stand the thought of eating another can of them.

seabreeze_97 01-17-2010 03:28 AM

Here's a nice example from a very experienced cruiser with 2 1/2 circumnavigations under his belt. It's a list of what they provision for two, for a 12-week cruise. So, for you that'd work out to about 24 weeks. Half again should cover it. They cruise on a nicely modified 29ft Pearson Triton. Click on the "Boat Projects" link to see the integral water tanks that were added.
Atom Voyages | Recipes and Provisioning for Cruising Sailboats

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