Originally Posted by Xx Darkwing xX
Thx SloopJonB. Much appreciated. Any idea if keel stepped masts are better than deck stepped? Are steel hulks better than fiberglass hulls? Remedial question but it is hard to narrow down boat types without really having a vast sailing bkgd. If this were aircraft I could offer much to the forum but for now I'm a sponge who hopes to give backin the future! Thx for the help.
Keel stepped masts can offer some structural/sailshape advantages but tend to let rainwater into the boat despite best efforts to prevent it. A deck stepped mast is drier but many deck stepped boats suffer problems in the supporting structure required to support the high compression loads of the rigs. (Decks can 'crush', wooden compression posts can have issues, etc) But keel stepped boats can have step issues too.
With any properly engineered boat in good condition neither of these set ups should be an issue, however.
Steel hulks are to be avoided...
- but there are some very good steel hulled boats, though the real good ones come at a premium. The bad ones are usually a maintenance headache but they can be easily repaired anywhere in the world.. and can be massively strong. Also many steel boats are likely home built with all the issues (good and bad) that can go with that. There are very few mainstream builders using steel, it doesn't lend itself to 'production lines'.
It can be bewildering.. but read lots, read the forums and you'll soon get a good picture of what's out there, and no shortage of opinions!!
Good luck and welcome to the forum
EDIT: oops... cross posted with JonB.... sorry.