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Too small for offshore?
What avery sad view on life to say you wouldn''t go offshore if you couldn''t survive a worst case, and it must be right to respond that no boat coyuld guarantee survival in such a collision... possibly not even in a steel hull if you were unlucky.
so what are we saying ... only drive a tank down a freeway and just hope you don''t cause an accident by driving slower than everyone else.
The point is that if you wish to go offshore you have to have a (1) suitable boat, (2)in suitable condition, (3) with appropriate equipment and (4)sufficient crew experience. (4 conditions)
Its a good question, but if you have to ask then it means at this time you have not met at least one of the conditions (the fourth). However I am not trying to be negative because you could well be on the road to completing all 4 conditions ... and good luck to you.
Firstly, I have no knowledge of your boat type as I sail in Europe.
(1) Suitable boat. If it is true you don''t have a self draining cockpit this indicates you need to be thinking "what do I need to do to ensure my boat is seaworthy?" It sounds like modifications are required which might include creating a raised false cockpit floor and making it self draining. You will need professional assistance from a naval architect and a boatbuilder to assess the most appropriate modifications and a review of your basic hull strength. Perhaps you need to strengthen your hull, chain plate fittings and increase the weight of your rigging. Are the spars basically of sufficient inherent strength. If you start looking at the ORC special regulations you will see helpful requirements (requirements for ocean racers, just damn good advice to cruisers) on such issues as cockpit size, collision bulkheads, hatch covers.
(2) In suitable condition means you not only make sure everything is working, but you know how to work it and are very familiar with, not just how it works but your repair and alternates strategies.
(3) Appropriate equipment dovetails with (2) in respect of many spares, but again see the ORC Spec regs for recommendations about survival suits, liferafts, grab bag contents etc.etc.
This is the point ...yes you might hit the proverbial steel container (unlikely but you plan for it) .. thats why you are going to spend so much money getting ready and buying all this kit (Small is cheap as well as beautiful)
(4) OK with a small boat you don''t have room for many people, but you''ll need at least one with practical ocean going experience as a skipper. You will be a great supplement to his/her experience because by the time you go sailing you will have completed courses and gained cerificates in all sorts of disciplines ( see ORC again for the list).
Size, per se does not matter. In many ways it is easier to survive very heavy weather in a small boat (albeit terrifying and very unconfortable).
(2) In suitable