Join Date: Jan 2014
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Re: Sailing "big boats"
First I must say that I really enjoy working on my boat its kind of my zen... I love to sail, but to be fair I enjoy fiddling with my boat almost as much. We do 90% of all our maintenance, even with the more complex systems, none of it is rocket science, though some of the electrical can feel like it at times. The only thing I won't do is the exterior paint work, not because I am incapable, I choose not to. As to the safety of sailing the larger boat- the Ketch rig helps somewhat, the all in boom furling is additional help, and we have significant redundancy in the sail handling systems. There are five electric winches and back up, upon back up. I suppose it all could fail, but I'm thinking that is unlikely. The setup to single hand this boat is not entirely complex, but is not by any stretch of the imagination an inexpensive endeavor to set up. The boat can be sailed from the cockpit only with no need to go forward. The boom furlers allow the sails to be dropped easily in an emergency if there is a jam. I have yet to have a problem with the furlers. Yes we have a thruster, which makes docking relatively easy, but we can and have done it without the thruster.
Now to the issue of space, I get that a lot of you are sailing couples, we are as well, but my guess is not all of you sail with five additional small sailors aboard. We have five kids on board full time, and two of them teenage boys. I think on a forty foot boat we might have to drag the kids behind in the dingy some days. LOL... Anyway that makes seven people on board full time. Five of us scuba dive, we have an air compressor on board and all our gear. Space is not an insignificant factor for us, and the alternatives have positives and some big negatives for our not so small crew.