Ketch vs. Cutter - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Boat Review and Purchase Forum
 Not a Member? 


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 09-27-2003
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 12
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
Dking59 is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

I would like to hear some discussion about the advantages or disadvantages of a ketch rig on a modern cruising boat.
I''m thinking in terms of a 42 to 44'' boat handled by a couple. Traditionaly a ketch was thought to offer more options of sail combination and smaller easier to handle sails. Now with the perfection of furling sails, lazy jacks, dutchmans and full batten mains, etc., the picture is not as clear. My wife and I have owned a number of sloops up tp 45''and now we are looking for something new and thought of trying a ketch. I would like to hear some pros and cons.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #2  
Old 09-27-2003
ASA and PSIA Instructor
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 3,425
Thanks: 6
Thanked 14 Times in 14 Posts
Rep Power: 15
sailingfool will become famous soon enough
Ketch vs. Cutter

The disavantages of a mizzen seem to be such that I''m not too sure that there are any "modern" ketches, unless one wants to consider boats made before the mid-''70s as modern.

That ketches are history gives a clear picture that sloops with furling sails have all the pluses.

Good luck.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #3  
Old 09-28-2003
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 12
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
Dking59 is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

Thanks for the reply salingfool

I guess my definition of "modern boats" is a little broader than yours. I''m considering boats such as Brewer 44, Bristol 41.1 and 45, Contest 40. All these boats are what I would call modern with modified fin keels seperated skeg and rudder and reasonable performance.

I was hoping to find ketch owners or former ketch owners who might comment on the advanteges or disadvantages. We all know a ketch can''t point like a sloop or cutter, but when we cruise we avoid going to windward if possible.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #4  
Old 09-29-2003
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 360
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 13
928frenzy is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

If as you say, you don''t plan to sail to windward much, then it seems to me that a ketch would be only a bit more work to sail than a cutter with a furling jib and staysail, but would provide more sail combinations than either a cutter or a sloop.

Also, on a ketch it might be easier to handle its relatively smaller sails, especially when compared to a sloop or cutter with much larger sails which may cause the furlers to malfunction.

In addition, a mizen-mast provides good mountings for radar or other electronic devices. It also serves well for an anchoring sail or when manuvering at very low speed or in tight quarters.

Lastly, (IMO) ketches seem to have a nicer visual appeal than either cutters or sloops.

BTW, rent the movie "Captain Ron" if you haven''t already seen it. Now that''s a pretty ketch.

~ Happy sails to you ~ _/) ~
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #5  
Old 09-29-2003
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 14
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
ddebruin is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

I sailed a ketch (32'' Dickerson) for 10 years now have a sloop with roller furling. Can''t see any advantages to the ketch. Just more sheets, halyards, sails to repair and handle. With the more modern sail handling hardware, i.e. roller furling etc. there does not seem to be the need for the smaller sails. I sail short handed or single handed most of the time. On the ketch, rigging the mizzen and jib would balance and sail nicely in a breeze, the sail handling on my sloop allows easier changes of sail area so I am able to start with more sail, and reduce when nec. or vice versa more easily than I ever could with the ketch. Of course my sloop is 20 years newer than the ketch and sails better on almost every point of sail anyway. My 2cents.

Dan
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #6  
Old 11-08-2004
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 3
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
MichaelGOP is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

We sail an Allied Mistress 39'' Ketch and have become big fans of the rig. In heavy weather she sails great under mizzen and foresail. The mizzen is easily handled. We''ve experimented sailing with and without the mizzen and find we pretty much always do better mizzen up then down. When the wind pipes up we prefer to reef or stow the main and "give up the mizzen last."

We point better than we expected when we bought our Allied as well. We once (don''t ask) ran out of fuel and beat through the breakwaters into Montauk harbor. If you know the harbor, you know how much we''ve come to appreciate what our Allied Ketch can do!

For downwind and light air we fly an asymetrical and hope to add a mizzen staysail.

Much of what rig is available seems to do with fashion. Sloops were in, then ketches, then sloops again, now cutters. All have advantages and disadvantages. At least the mizzen self tacks. On a cutter you have to get the fore around the staysail. Not hard to do with a yankee jib, but all those cutters have huge genoas trying to tack around the inner stay.

The mizzen also is the great place to hang flags, wind generators and radar.

The ketch rig has much to recommend it. We often say, "nobody beats the miz."
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #7  
Old 11-08-2004
TrueBlue's Avatar
Señor Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Narragansett Bay
Posts: 4,853
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 12
TrueBlue is a jewel in the rough TrueBlue is a jewel in the rough TrueBlue is a jewel in the rough
Ketch vs. Cutter

Thanks for the positive support of ketch rigs Michael. We just bought a ketch-rigged boat, late in the season and anxiously await next season to fully enjoy her.

During our bi-season marina dock party, one of our dock mates shared an interesting play on words:

"Do you know why they call the sail a mizzen? . . .''cause it keeps mizzen your head".

Steve
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #8  
Old 11-09-2004
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,120
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 13
WHOOSH is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

Steve, let me just add a word of encouragement to Michael''s comments re: ketches...altho'' talking about the rig as tho'' it is separate from the boat can be a bit misleading. One of the reasons Michael praises his Allied''s rig is because the boat was designed for its rig and the rig was set up functionally. Ketch & cutter rigs can both be somewhat disfunctionally arranged and/or unsuitable for a given boat.

We''ve been sailing a Pearson 424 ketch for some years now. Its wide sheeting angle, beamy (also roomy) hull, and lesser draft already give it limited performance to windward, with the ketch rig reducing windward performance just that much more. And of course there is more rigging with which to contend; one especially notices this if the ketch rig is placed on an aft cockpit boat.

But I think people overlook several benefits that can be very meaningful. We sailed N to S, the back N and, finally, E to W thru the Caribbean, and did it all relatively easily as a couple. (We also got 1,000 NM to windward against the Trades, as there''s more to that task than simply sailing a slippery, windward witch of some kind). Ketches often have lower profile sail plans, which in conjunction with their smaller sails makes sail handling easier for a short-hand or older crew like us. Second, adding light air sails can substantially increase performance. E.g. Michael will love a mizzen staysail when he gets one (which BTW is relatively cheap, light, small and easy to handle). It''s our ''supercharger'' in lighter winds and, when used in conjunction with an asym off the wind, can totally replace the heavier weight working sails while still adding perhaps 30% to the working sail area. These two benefits in turn led us to believe that crossing an ocean wasn''t as much of a physical challenge (and therefore, a safety issue) as we''d originally believed, and so it''s fair to say our rig was not only compatible with but invited us to extend our cruising plans. And as we visited Scandinavia and dealt with the heavier winds in the North Sea and Baltic, it once again made this easier than it might otherwise have been.

The comment about a mizzen being a suitable place to mount other systems is true but may not mean much to boats sailed locally. To illustrate this, we use our mizzen, topped up a bit, as our outboard derrick when lifting the engine onto or off the dink. It also holds our radar, radar reflector, TV antenna and is the mount for our wind generator, at the mizzen masthead. All of these are better located here IMO than where they otherwise would end up living on a single-masted boat.

Good luck on playing with your rig this coming season. Experiment with it and you''ll end up discovering its advantages. Most of the criticisms of the rig you''ll hear from others are somewhat academic, as most sailors have little or no experience with the ketch rig. Let the boat teach you what you do & don''t like about it.

Jack
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #9  
Old 11-27-2004
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Panama City, Fl
Posts: 7
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
swhall is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

We bought an Allied Mistress 39 last year. We think it is a great handling boat. The ketch rig has been good for us, and we sailed from Key West to Panama City with no engine. Even in light winds we were able to still make 3kts.

I havent thought about the mizzen staysail. Are they expensive to add?

Steve
S/V Endless Summer
1972 Allied Mistress #8
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #10  
Old 11-28-2004
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,120
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 13
WHOOSH is on a distinguished road
Ketch vs. Cutter

Steve, you''ll find a mizzen staysail will be the least expensive sail in your boat''s inventory, perhaps the easiest to rig and hoist/retrieve, and for your boat it''s likely to add more sail area than your mainsail.

I''d suggest you shop for mizzen staysails in the used sail lofts (Minnie''s, Bacon''s et al.) or, if soliciting bids for a new staysail from lofts, consider requesting a quote from an offshore loft (Lee''s, Rolly Tasker, etc.). Because the sail is relatively simple, there is less risk when purchasing it from an offshore loft as there are few potential problem areas. I purchased ours from Rolly Tasker and, for our 13M/42'' boat, it was $300 plus shipping.

Let me know if you want to step off this thread and talk a bit about setting up the staysail running rigging or how to spec the sail.

Jack
jack_patricia@yahoo.com
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Sloop, Cutter or Ketch jsgsail Boat Review and Purchase Forum 17 12-26-2008 02:47 PM
New to Sailing, please Help =) xyris Learning to Sail 19 11-17-2008 08:30 AM
Ketch/Yawl Handling svsymphony Seamanship & Navigation 19 07-05-2008 01:19 AM
diffrent rigs? (schooner, ketch, cutter, sloop) jbarros Boat Review and Purchase Forum 2 07-09-2003 04:10 PM
How do you tack a cutter? JeffC_ Seamanship & Navigation 7 02-22-2003 12:55 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:25 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.