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  #21  
Old 01-14-2013
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bljones View Post
You've got a good list here, but you won't find a Tanzer 25 drawing 2' or less, although it would be my choice for heading to the tortugas or bahamas of the boats on your list. Same with the westerlys,although the twin keels may solve your tidal issues.
Find the best boat on your list for $5K. No more.
Yeah, I know, you've got a $10K ceiling, but you really don't. EVERY boat you buy will want something,or you will want to throw something at it,so you gotta figure that in,and human nature rears it's ugly head because everyone always exceeds their boatbuying budget. Always. If you think you have $10K you spend $12, because well, what the hell, you're already spending $10K.

I know,I know, you're different.
Everybody thinks they are.
Plus there all sorts of sneaky hidden costs like tax and registration and trailer bearings and Murphy has his shopping list too. This is your first boat- you need to have an "oh, fudge" fund because you will quickly discover that cheap stuff floatsm but expensive stuff sinks when it falls off your boat. And it will.
The difference between a great first sailing season and a lousy unfun first sailing season is that reserve budget. Getting that drowned outboard rebuilt isn't such a big deal when its' in the budget, for example.

Have fun, and we'll see you on the water.
Thanks. Good advice!

Depending on whether I spring for dredging, something above 2' and under 3' of draft might work. Still, the less draft, the more flexibility I'll have. There is a lot of skinny water in local grounds, which is where I'll be most of the time, and probably all of the first year or 2.

If I can get a boat that in the future can do a little near-offshoring (?) as well, that would be great, but this is more a chance to ask knowledgeable sailors about what I may not know (which is a lot!) than an expectation.

I've tried to compile a reasonably thorough list of well-regarded boats in this class (and may be adding a few to it), but I won't get a chance to sail all of them, or even a decent fraction of them. Availability will count, and for boats further afield shipping costs need to be factored in as well. But I wanted to make sure I had a decent list, so that when an opportunity arises I will (A) recognize it, and (B) have done enough background research to be able to move quickly if needed.

Thanks again!
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  #22  
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

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Originally Posted by doogymon View Post
Canadian Sailcraft 22.
Thanks. Hadn't heard of it before (noob, remember), but it looks like a nice boat.
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  #23  
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

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Originally Posted by gts1544 View Post
joebeach, Remembering that interior space increases exponentially with length in a sailboat, I would try to get as close to your maximum length as meets the rest of your criteria, and I would closely examine my criteria that is not dictated by circumstances beyond my control. Also, remember that repairs and upgrades are very expensive, so try to purchase a vessel that has as much of what you want already incorporated. gts1544 PS - I used to own a Morgan 24/25 and loved that boat, but would feel pretty cramped on her today with more than myself aboard.
Yes. Excellent points. Thanks!
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  #24  
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

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Originally Posted by davisr View Post
You might want to consider the Ericson 25. There is a website devoted to this boat. See especially the four-part article, "Why I Bought the Ericson 25." It covers many of the boats on your list (and more).
A very nice boat, but if I'm reading about the right one, its draft approaches 4 feet. Too much for my local waters, unfortunately. Thanks for the suggestion, though.
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

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Originally Posted by joebeach View Post
A very nice boat, but if I'm reading about the right one, its draft approaches 4 feet. Too much for my local waters, unfortunately. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

You must have happend upon a fixed keel Ericson 25. There are only a handful of those. The majority of Ericson 25s are centerboard boats with specs that fit your search parameters.

It's also possible that you looked at an Ericson 25+, which is a different hull altogether from the Ericson 25.
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

Quote:
Originally Posted by davisr View Post
You must have happend upon a fixed keel Ericson 25. There are only a handful of those. The majority of Ericson 25s are centerboard boats with specs that fit your search parameters.

It's also possible that you looked at an Ericson 25+, which is a different hull altogether from the Ericson 25.
Yes - thanks. I see an Ericson 25 CB, with a minimum 2' draft, as well as a 23-2 CB, both on saildata. Will add these to the list as well.
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Old 01-16-2013
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

I think you may be making a mistake not looking at the water balasted Hunters (23.4, 240, 260). I think they are built as well as the Catalinas. I looked at a lot of boats before buying my 23.5. Centerboard up is 18" draft. Much nicer interior than Catalina 22s I've seen and much bigger cockpit for lounging in at anchor. As long as you reef early it sails well (no racer) but fun and makes good progress. Light air sailing I can keep up with larger boats and motors well with my 8 hp outboard. I would not do bluewater cruising in it of course but with the right weather window would not hesitate to sail it to the Bahamas. Main drawback is lack of dedicated storage space. The interior is opened up so much you have to get creative with storage. Just some thing to think about.

Kevin
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Old 01-20-2013
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

I looked into Catboats and fell in love with the atlantic City Catboat 24. One of the bigger catboats about and has full standing room below decks.. and then I started reading about their cruising abilities on the ocean and went scurrying off to look at sloops.

The main problems I found was the "frightening" gyb a catboat can do. Figure that long boom is about the same length as the boat itself. That is a lot of mass when it gets swinging from one side to the other.

The other was when running before the wind, it is too easy to dump the boom and sail into the water. Once you do that, you are one step from swimming. Like said above, if you take a reef in the moment you think about it, that might help some, but a boom that hangs 20 feet off of the side of the boat can easily catch a good swell
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Old 01-20-2013
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

I sailed an 18' catboat for 15 years and remain impressed with their ability to deal with adverse conditions. I was also familiar with a fellow who owned an AC 24 who sailed and raced it in our area (coastal SE New England) and he absolutely loved it. He even took it to the Chesapeake shortly before he passed away. I was even considering an AC 24 before I found my swing keel 35 ft sloop 17 years ago.

You are correct that you don't want to gybe a catboat in higher winds, but, that said, I have watched catboats gybe in one race where the winds hit 30 knots. Several of the catboats deliberately gybed coming around the mark to the downwind leg. Two of them ended up with what we called a "gooseneck gybe", wherein the boom lifts high as it comes around and--this case--ripped the sail. A third (single-handed by a 75 yr.old woman) actually broke the gooseneck fitting. These 3 boats withdrew from the race at that point.

These were not accidental gybes, but what I would call "hotdogging" in race mode. Usually you have plenty of warning of an impending gybe and can react in time. I find my sloop is quicker to gybe than my old catboat. When you gybe in higher winds in a catboat, what can happen is that the momentum of the boom, along with the tendency of a catboat to head up when overpowered, is that the catboat will do just that and you will keep turning and head up. It actually is quite funny to watch when a catboat sailor does this in the heat of a race!

During that same race, I shook out a reef at 20 kts, just before the winds picked up to 30 kts. Big mistake! Not willing to go forward to reef at that point, I continued with full sail, using a fisherman's reef (ease the mainsheet and let the sail flog a bit) which is not good for the sail. Being in last place, I went through the wind at that downwind mark and --being overpowered--used a standard catboat trick when caught in this situation, which is to "scandalize". That is, to drop the gaff. You immediately dump the wind from about 2/3 of the sail and move the center of effort lower and closer to the centerline.

When you inevitably get caught in conditions you'd rather not be in, you learn a lot about your boat. What I've learned about catboats is that they are extremely stable and safe. You typically cannot get the rail down. As the catboat becomes overpowered it heads up with a weather helm that takes over. The wide beam also provides the form stability to keep you on your feet, which makes it harder to get your boom in the water. Besides, catboats don't have vangs and the boom tends to be raised when you are running in a breeze. The picture below shows an 80 yr. old, double-reefed 22ft Crosby cat running downwind in what looks like about a 20 kt+ breeze. I have never had a problem with the boom snagging the water when running and I've sailed the 18 footer in an area bounded by Wickford, RI, to Block Island to Shelter Island.

The catboat design was a day in , day out work boat that had to be reasonably well-behaved and easily managed over a variety of conditions. Those mannerisms are maintained in the fiberglass replicas you see today. They are not blue water boats, primarily due to the large cockpits (you don't want to get pooped in a catboat).

I'll be downsizing one of these days and would consider going back to an 18-22 ft catboat. That 75 yr.old lady who sailed her 18 ft catboat in 30 kts is my role model--not that I would deliberately go out in 30 kts!

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Old 01-21-2013
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Re: Shoal-draft pocket cruiser recommendations?

If you can find one.. have you considered an Oysterman 23? modeled after the Skipjacks of the chesapeake, they sail fine in 20 inches of water with the board up and 6' with it down

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Last edited by mad_machine; 01-21-2013 at 05:24 PM.
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