Mast height/Draft - What limitations will I have? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 50 Old 10-07-2007 Thread Starter
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Mast height/Draft - What limitations will I have?

Hello all -

Just looked at a Hallberg-Rassy 53 and it's a pretty nice boat. However - the draft is 7'6" and the mast height is 73'6". Right now our plan is to head out of Lake Ontario, go up the St. Lawrence, turn right around Nova Scotia and head down the east coast of the US. Eventually, we'll probably be looking to go to the BVI's and other areas, and then perhaps do a trip through the Panama Canal and onwards around the world.

I'd love to hear people's thoughts about the affect the mast height and draft might have on this trip? I know we'll have many intracoastal issues, but what parts will we still be able to see?

Thanks! Chris

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post #2 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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You won't be able to see much on the ICW and you will always need to go offshore around Hatteras which is the main reason I would not consider a boat with 65+ when we were looking. You WILL be able to enter all of the larger inlets and get to a dock...the 7'6 draft is a killer on the ICW and rules out large areas of the Bahamas as well. Not a problem at all south of the Turks and Caicos and through the Caribe. I don't think that draft is a problem heading on a path through the canal but might be restrictive in the SanBlas and IS restrictive in the Rio Dulce. Can't speak to the south pacific or further on.
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post #3 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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No WAY! I will admit that Cam has a lot more experience down the east coast than I do... but that kind of draft and mast height will absolutely rule you out of MANY places. You can basically kiss off almost all of SW Florida, much or all of the keys, much of the Texas Coast and LA coast, Bahamas, and come to think if it, I am tying to rack my brain where I have been taht you will get around with that draft except Caliafornia. THat is the only place I have been you won't be sitting on the hard all the time. Now that may not be a big deal until you have a storm coming and no place to duck.

No way. Not for me. If you need that kind of room and want to go around the world, buy a Nordhavn. Not much more money if any.

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post #4 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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That boat would not be fun here in Texas, interesting but not fun. Most of the Gulf Coast would be a problem. The ICW is supposed to be deep enough but . . . you know how it is. Getting to places off the ICW like the SYC in New Orleans or almost any public marina just a few feet off the ditch would be a high tide thing, if then. It doesn't sound like you're heading this way but I would imagine the East Coast wouldn’t be a lot deeper. I haven't been on the East Coast ICW but I can tell you that the Gulf Coast has a lot of fixed bridges at 65 feet so that boat is a double negative in these parts. I’ve seen them but it’s very very rare.

Be careful in and around Nassau Bahamas. I’ve been stuck in the sand there with much less draft.


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post #5 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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That boat would not be fun here in Texas, interesting but not fun. Most of the Gulf Coast would be a problem. The ICW is supposed to be deep enough but . . . you know how it is. Getting to places off the ICW like the SYC in New Orleans or almost any public marina just a few feet off the ditch would be a high tide thing, if then. It doesn't sound like you're heading this way but I would imagine the East Coast wouldnít be a lot deeper. I haven't been on the East Coast ICW but I can tell you that the Gulf Coast has a lot of fixed bridges at 65 feet so that boat is a double negative in these parts. Iíve seen them but itís very very rare.

Be careful in and around Nassau Bahamas. Iíve been stuck in the sand there with much less draft.
I have hit bottom INSDE the ICW with 5'4 draft. No joking. I ran aground all day long with 5'4. I cannot imagine 7. Truth is that he would not even get close to the ICW!! He would run aground beforehand.

Nah, no thanks. Believe me... take my word... you don't want that. Well, I will take all that back: THIS IS JUST MY OPINION... YOU DON'T WANT THAT.

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post #6 of 50 Old 10-07-2007 Thread Starter
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So let's change things up a bit... let's say we're not as tied to going down the ICW or the Bahamas... would that change your opinion some? Or you just feel that a deep draft boat would not be worth it for all the areas you'd miss?

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post #7 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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Ive run aground a few times on the ICW around Charleston SC with a 6' draft.
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post #8 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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So let's change things up a bit... let's say we're not as tied to going down the ICW or the Bahamas... would that change your opinion some? Or you just feel that a deep draft boat would not be worth it for all the areas you'd miss?
I am giving you my opinion. THere are many places you can go with a deep draft boat. Portugal is one (smile). However, you would miss a lot. If you are that stuck on that much space, consider a different boat or get a trawler. I was not being sarcastic. These are of course just my opinions... or should I say the opinion's of someone that has spent many hours on many unchartered sand bars... and that is with 5'4.

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post #9 of 50 Old 10-07-2007
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So let's change things up a bit... let's say we're not as tied to going down the ICW or the Bahamas... would that change your opinion some? Or you just feel that a deep draft boat would not be worth it for all the areas you'd miss?
Take a peek:


http://www.yachtworld.com/core/listi..._id=33464&url=

http://www.yachtworld.com/core/listi...g_id=1797&url=

http://www.yachtworld.com/core/listi..._id=32744&url=

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post #10 of 50 Old 10-08-2007
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As a world cruiser, in open water, without bridges, you'd be fine. Gulf Coast, Florida, and Southeast US, you can pretty much write off, as in all those areas I've had times when I was glued to my depth sounder, and I only draw 4'6". And I don't even want to think about raising the main on that boat if the electric winch fails (and I can't imagine it doesn't have one). Or for that matter, trimming the genny. Not with just your family on board. In some ways, I think that would be more of a concern than the bridge clearance or draft. Could your wife handle that much boat, if you were incapacitated?

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