Join Date: Apr 2006
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dawg, Rick makes an excellent point but I think the upgrade is "only" about 500 lbs. of extra fluid, which is the same as 2-3 crew on a boat. Odds are a boat planned as a crusier will be planned for the extra displacement, including hull design, but one built as a "racer/cruiser" honestly has to optimize one way or the other, including the design water line figuring in the load. I guess part of that is just semantics, I prefer the term "express cruiser" or something similar to indicate a boat meant to cruise--but with speed.
Remember that if a 32-36' racer is going around the buoys, it may carry 4-9 people on board and that's a greater weight range than the 500# of tankage is. Take the same boat on a distance race...and you can be real sure that it has to carry still more weight because crew don't come back unless you at least carry SOME food and water for them. And feeding 4-9 for a week, again, is weight.
Whether any boat has enough stowage for an extra 60-70 gallons of fluid, preferably low down someplace, is probably the bigger concern for you. And trimming it around, trying to keep it down low and centered. So I wouldn't worry as much about converting, as about the stowage needs in general. If you are not planning extended cruising full time, jerry cans stowed below can be worth using once or twice a year as and when needed. Not perfect, but something a lot of folks do.
For that matter you could even borrow an agressive trick from the racers: Plumb in a ballast tank [read: 6" PVC pipes] up under each side of the deck, and use the extra weight as live ballast. Illegal in many racing groups, legal in others. And pretty much the same way that our supercarriers keep their flight decks level, although they throw thousands of gallons per minute to do that trick.