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  #21  
Old 07-05-2006
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Talk about BS'ing...Surfesq, "A full keel boat is more comfortable" ? Where do you come up with this stuff?

There is absolutely no relationship between a full keel and comfort. It is true that many a boat that is comfortable for offshore work has a full keel, but its not the full keel that makes the boat comfortable. Motion comfort comes from a cluster of factors that revolve around a boat's buoyancy and weight distribution, and dampening. Keel shape may come into play on some specific design but from a motion comfort standpoint a full keel offers no specific advanage and infact can offer disadvantages in terms of absorbing greater impact area for its weight.

You might argue that a full keel provides better directional stability, which is more often true than not, but motion, forget about it. No relationship at all. Sorry Dude.....

Respectfully,
Jeff
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  #22  
Old 07-05-2006
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Newport 41

One of the crummy things about the internet is you don't get a chance to look the other guy in the face and see where he's coming from. Face to face you would have said, "Hey, wait a minute, I like my boat!" and I would have had a chance to explain where I was coming from, long before we engaged in the internet equivillent of throwing down gauntlets and naming seconds.

Beefed up a bit, and treated with a bit more circumspection than you might treat a boat that was purpose built for offshore work, the Newport could work for what you want to do. There's a good chance you'll wear the old girl out before your reach OZ or NZ but that's not the end of the world either.

My point was not that the Newport was any less capable than the boats that we sailed back when I was your age, It is certainly a lot more seaworthy than the 1949 wooden Folkboat that I restored when I was 24 and tried to live on. Its just a very different approach.

If you want to throw stones, I sail a Farr 38. Few around here would think of her as an offshore cruiser either. I know her shortcomings, her bunks are narrow, her fuel supply is a joke, she doesn't track worth a darn, but I bought her for her strengths, good motion comfort, very easy to handle, lots of room, good offshore manners, brilliant engineering, and great speed for a 10,500 lb boat.

In life most people end up with boats they love, freckles and all. Boats look more like their owners, inside and out, than dogs ever will.

A tip of the hat to you and a wish of good luck,
Jeff

Last edited by Jeff_H; 07-05-2006 at 11:05 PM.
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  #23  
Old 07-05-2006
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And all of this reminds me of a story from when I was Newport's age. I know that I have told this story here before. Sorry to those who have read it.

In the early 1970’s, Dinner Key (Just south of Miami on Biscayne Bay) was a gathering place for a disparate collection of vaguely nautical types. A strange maritime amalgam that ranged from the white be-blazered swells at Coral Reef yacht Club to the castoffs that camped on the small barrier islands that marked the entrance to Dinner Key. It included the retired military lifers with their proper yachts, and the hippies with their strangely cobbled together vessels; old lifeboat conversions and weirdly converted wooden race boats, old Bahamas sloops and Cuban fishing smacks. This was time of great polarization in this country, but on the waterfront, life was a strange blending of diverse factions, living shoulder to shoulder, a stirring and mixing of opposites pulled together by our common gravity of being sailors.

This mix of the rich and the raucous, the saint and the stew bum, was constantly changing as boats and people came and went. I was there at ground zero, the D.I.T (Do it yourself) yard at Dinner Key, a 23-year-old, fresh out of architecture school, restoring a wooden folkboat, Diana; a lapstraker that was a year older than myself. It was not unusual to visit or be visited by others working on their own boats when the heat became too great to continue, or the skies opened up and we all ran for cover in the great shed. There was this sense of community as we each wrestled with each of our boat’s own particular form of torture. Mine was keel bolts. But that is another story.

Occasionally, there would be one boat and one person that really needed the help of the community and the Irish Kid was one of those. The Irish Kid (I don’t know if I ever knew his name) came to the States from Ireland to see his father who was a dog trainer at the greyhound racetracks. His visa only allowed the Irish Kid a few months in this country, and he had already extended it as far as he could. Immigration had ordered him to leave by noon of a certain day after which they would arrest him and deport him.

For a reason completely lost to time and myself, the Irish Kid had decided to leave by buying a boat and sailing to the Bahamas, at that time still a British possession. He had bought a neat little 20 or so foot plywood sloop, which was more or less a miniature Folkboat interpreted in multi-chine plywood. She was a pretty little fractional rigged, moderately long keeled, sloop, painted a cheery yellow by some prior owner. Unfortunately the boat needed some serious repairs so she was hauled out in Dinner Key Marina a couple boats away from ‘Diana’.

The Irish Kid had only planned to haul out a few days, maybe a week at the most, before being launched again and well before his deadline to leave the states. As in all boat repairs, it did not work out that way. The required repairs were far more extensive and time consuming than he had planned. All of us in the yard felt sorry for him and tried to help as best we could. I had found a source for government surplus bottom paint and so picked up an extra gallon for him. His mast step had rotted out and had also rotted the painted plywood deck below it. A number of us spent a night cutting the deck apart and scarfing in a new piece of deck and building him a new mast step. One of the guys donated the wreck of an old rig and its parts were scavenged to replace pieces of bad rigging. And so it went.

Every couple days, a black Ford galaxy with U.S. government plates would pull into the boat yard and two men in suits would talk to the Irish Kid and let him know that they would not allow him a minute more than the allotted deadline to leave. This very much scared the Irish Kid since all of his money was tied up in that boat, and if he was carted off and sent home, he believed the boat would be seized by the Government to pay for his airfare.

Adding to the pathos of this whole venture was the fact that the Irish Kid did not know how to sail, or navigate and had not spent time around boats. Originally, there was a hippie that had planned to sail over to the Bahamas with the Irish Kid. We all knew this hippie to be less than perfectly knowledgeable and trustworthy but he was certainly a more experienced sailor than the Kid. A day or two before the Irish Kid was set to leave the hippie decided not to go.

On the last day leading up to the Irish Kid’s planned departure, we all pitched in doing what ever we could to get his boat put back together. We had wanted to take him sailing and make sure that he understood what we had been telling him but he was only launched on the morning that he had to leave. Another sailor and myself drove him up to get some groceries at the supermarket. He had wanted to say good-bye to his father but there was not enough time to run up Hialeah.

We had tried to convince him to sail over and anchor in ‘No-Name Cove’ on the opposite side of Biscayne Bay and just daysail until he felt comfortable with the boat, but he was so nervous that he would have his boat seized that he insisted that he would just simply sail over to the Bahamas. But sailing to the Bahamas was anything but simple. For several days a Norther had kept the flags standing out and slatting harshly and had raised whitecaps in the protected water of Biscayne Bay. It was not a good day for a new sailor to try to sail to ‘No-Name Cove’ by himself no less the Bahamas, But he set sail about 11:00 or so heading across Biscayne Bay to the cut off of Cape Florida on Key Biscayne and out toward the Florida Straights.

About noon, the black Galaxy showed up. The two guys in suits asked if I knew where the Irish kid had gone. I climbed up the ladder to the deck of ‘Diana’, and looking seaward, there was a tiny white triangle glowing in the mid-day sun above a spec of a yellow hull heeled down and basically on course for the cut. I pointed and said, “There he is”. One of the Government Men came aboard and looked for himself, thanked me, and then they left.

The Kid did not know how to navigate. One of the guys in the boatyard had laid out a course and told him when the water turned color head 45 Degrees further south until the water turned color again. I don’t recall if he could even read a chart.

These were different times than today. Small yachts did not carry VHF radios. GPS or even Loran did not exist. The Irish Kid’s boat did not have a reliable outboard or an electrical system. He had a silly little double D cell powered running light that had a red and green at the front and a white light at the rear that he clipped to his mast. If he failed there was no way to call for help.

In the first few days after the Irish Kid left, I naively listened on the AM radio for news of an air/sea rescue search, but then it hit me, who would call in that search? Over the years I thought of the Irish Kid a lot. In the years after Dinner Key, I’d think of him almost every time I sailed a small boat in a building breeze. But slowly over time I’d think of him less and less.

To this day I wonder what happened to him. I wonder if he somehow made it, or if perhaps he slipped in to No-Name Cove and did in fact learn to sail. I sometimes imagine him reaching the Bahamas. I wonder how he knew which low sand island was which. I wondered if he knew to look out for coral heads and dope runners. I wondered the current took him north and he missed the Bahamas entirely. Or the Norther blew him south and he piled up on Andros to die tangled in the Mangoves. Or maybe he went on to become a world cruiser of great renown. Maybe he was Tristan Jones.

Most times when I tell a story there is a moral, or a punchline or even an ending but this one is different. If there’s a moral I have yet to figure it out. There is no punchline and as this still haunts me to this day, I am not sure there is even an ending.

Good night folks,
Jeff
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  #24  
Old 07-05-2006
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"There is absolutely no relationship between a full keel and comfort. It is true that many a boat that is comfortable for offshore work has a full keel, but its not the full keel that makes the boat comfortable. Motion comfort comes from a cluster of factors that revolve around a boat's buoyancy and weight distribution, and dampening."

Jeffy: So many times on this site you express these really strong opinions that have no basis in fact. It's amusing. You throw out a bunch of bullshi*t that sounds kind of good but ultimately it makes not sense. Are you saying that a fin keel is just as comfortable as a full keel upwind in heavy seas? Seriously? The common argument about fin keel v. full keel is that a fin keel will point higher but bounce you to death such that you have to fall off. Meanwhile, a full keel will not point as high but will cut through big waves more comfortably. You are a typical architect....engineering envy!
Stick to what you do best. Waxing poetically about your Jack Kerouac days as a sailor.
By the way, we should get together, smoke some rope and talk about the old days.

Last edited by Surfesq; 07-05-2006 at 11:36 PM.
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  #25  
Old 07-05-2006
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Wink I could listen to this all day

I have to put in my two cents here, you guys are way too entertaining. I gotta agree with Surfesq here to a point. The full keel and more traditional bluewater design generally seems to have a better sea motion. That's only logical. On the other hand. There are fin keel boats that when loaded properly can be just as comfortable. I hate to bring up my boat again (that's a lie) but it does't have a flat spot on the hull and has a deep V all the way to the fin keel. This cuts waves well like a full keel but points remarkably well. The weight distribution thing is all about how you stow things. My point is that with a little thought you can have a fin keel with a seakindly motion. Not that a Newport 41 is the only boat that is like this, or even the best example but it is one that I have seen work. Many of the Transpac boats from the same era or sorc boats are the same way. I know I don't have to explain these concepts to the likes of you two. Just trying to point out a middle ground that we could all agree on. Atleast I think we can agree on. It's my job, I'm Canadian.
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  #26  
Old 07-05-2006
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Jeffy the architect:

Your bias on full keel v. fin keel is well documented on this site. Here is something you wrote in 2005:

"Here's the deal as I see it, first off you have been sold the old myth that "full keel makes the boat far more confortable and in follow seas a little more forgiving". Sorry Dude there really is no truth to that. Its an old wive's tale pretty much debunked in testing and in practical reality. While radical fin keels don't do a great job of tracking on their own, moderate length fins coupled with skeg hung rudders and a properly shaped hull form are actually better in a following sea situation where. Full length keels tend to lock in on whichever direction the waves have thrown them and their relatively inefficient rudders generally do not have the ability to steer them out of the broach. Been there, done that......Boats with a cut away forefoot and a skeg rudder have a better chance of being steered out of the broach."
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  #27  
Old 07-05-2006
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Exactly Dude: Just go sailing and have fun! Sounds like you have a really nice boat and a good crew. My only bits of advice for you. Invest in Radar and a good chartplotter before you go. There are a lot of boats out there! But you definitely get the cost/age ratio. Don't be talked out of it by people who have long since forgotten about what it means to be young.

Last edited by Surfesq; 07-06-2006 at 12:56 AM.
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  #28  
Old 07-05-2006
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Wink

Surfesq,

It may be someone's common wisdom that a "a fin keel will point higher but bounce you to death such that you have to fall off." but any knowledgeable sailor who has spent time in a fin keeled boat designed for offshore work, or who have bothered to read all of the studies of motion comfort including those where they instrumented real boats, will tell you there is virtually no relationship between a full keel motion comfort.

Frankly, the Brewer 12.8 with its fin keel/cb has a much more comfortable motion than the identical hulled Whitby 42. The Perry designed fin keeled Valiant 37 has no less comfortable a motion than its close sister the Tayana 37.

You need to get out on a variety of boats, attend a few Yacht design seminars presented by people that actually know what they are talking about, and not believe everything that you hear at the bar.

By the way this is the second time you totally missed it about my career. My degree is a dual architectural engineering degree, and my office strongly supports 'smart growth' principals which means building in intensely developed areas rather than supporting urban sprawl.

Jeff

Last edited by Jeff_H; 07-06-2006 at 12:01 AM.
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  #29  
Old 07-06-2006
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Ted Brewer:
"The modified full-keel form features generally good handling and directional stability plus reduced wetted surface. The yachts can perform well in all conditions and, as they are generally of heavier displacement than contemporary ballasted-fin boats, they do not give away much in light air, despite the added wetted area. A yacht with a modified full keel can sail right up with the best of them if she is given sail area commensurate with her typically heavier displacement. "

"Full Keel. The keel is the part of a sailboat that is filled with ballast (weight, usually from iron or lead) to counteract the forces on the sails. Some boats have keels that are more or less bolted onto the bottom of the hull. This is fine for coastal cruisers, but not the safest arrangement for heavy-weather sailing. These keels have been known to literally fall off after striking floating objects at sea or getting caught in very rough weather. A better alternative for off-shore cruising is a "full keel." These keels are built into the hull of the boat. In fact, on Candide, it's difficult to determine where the hull ends and the keel begins...as both are constructed from the same continuous mass of fiberglass. The downsides of having a full keel are that the boat will generally be a bit slower, and the boat may not sail as well into the wind. A huge advantage is that full keel boats will generally be much more stable at sea."
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  #30  
Old 07-06-2006
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Gotta love your arrogance by the way Jeff..."any knowledgeable sailor knows." The fallacy in the logic of your argument is now you are actually making the point that Newport 41's boat is more seaworthy than a full keel boat. Not everyone agrees with your point of view Jeff. And, loading up your statements with nonsense like "don't get your facts at a bar" or "I have sailed a million frickin boats so I know more" only makes you sound like a dumbass rather than like the image you are trying to project. (With all due respect of course).

Here is a review of a boat about Yacht Design release in 1988:

"What have boat designs lost in the quest for windward performance? Has a century of yacht racing corrupted our ability to design safe, all-around cruisers? How do you quantify a yacht’s comfort and safety characteristics? Do boat owners even understand why their boats have certain features?

While addressing these questions in Seaworthiness: The Forgotten Factor, C. A. Marchaj attacks modern yachts and promotes the benefits of full-keel, heavy-displacement designs. He relentlessly criticizes the fin keel and skeg rudder and identifies well-known boat designers as charlatans. Marchaj casts doubt upon the entire enterprise of organized keelboat racing, noting the craziness of human ballast hanging on the rail and the inefficiency of extremely heeled light displacement-boats. More troubling, according to the author, are racing design features which make their way into general-purpose boats, where the quest for windward speed at all costs is not a legitimate requirement. Nonetheless the casual boater does not have the option of, nor understand, alternatives that would improve comfort, safety, and cost.

Marchaj supports his points with detailed math formulas, which may be incomprehensible to some skippers, but the accompanying graphs and pictures are telling and much more accessible. Be prepared for incredible detail, such as individual chapters on pitch, roll, and yaw. But with repetition and visualization, you may begin to literally feel as you read the complex motions of a boat underway. In particular, the drawings of a heavy displacement yacht leaning into waves, maintaining equilibrium, make imminent sense. The action pictures of modern designs will make racing seem needlessly dangerous, not exciting. Though most of the book analyzes hull design, Marchaj also has counterintuitive views above the waterline, such as his support of heavy masts and rigs to dampen roll."

If you really want to impress people...Tell us you have placed a bet that scientists will be able to demonstrate Einstien's String Theory by 2010 (Yes you can bet on this) and that you believe in that there are in fact 11 dimensions.

Last edited by Surfesq; 07-06-2006 at 01:06 AM.
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