To much weight for boat to handle? - SailNet Community

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Old 09-19-2009
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To much weight for boat to handle?

Just getting back into sailing after a long hiatus. Much heavier now then when we used to sail. This weekend we are going to be looking at a Venture 17 as a possible purchase. But I've been researching the boat, I found out that it's displacement is 800 lbs. My total crew including myself weighs in at 530 lbs. Research I've done discovered that the swing keel on this model is 275 lbs. That totals 805 lbs. But then there is the weight of the boat as well which wouldn't surprise me to be 400 or 500 lbs. Bringing the total up to about 1200 or 1300 lbs. Which is well over the 800 lb displacement.

We would sure appreciate a knowledgeable opinion or 3 or 5 or 7.

Thank you.

Have a Great Day,
Jim
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Old 09-19-2009
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Displacement is not a weight capacity rating, it's how much water the hull displaces sitting in the water empty. It's how much the boat, including the keel, weighs. That boat will carry 530lbs without a problem.
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Old 09-20-2009
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The Builder's plate will have the 'Max Capacity' of weight that the boat will carry safely.
Needless to say: If that plate says that the Max is 700 lbs... that means you better be aware of how much you and your crew weight, the weight of your groceries and other ancillary equipment that you have on board.

One example: A 15 ft boat's builder's plate stated that 700 lbs was the max.
The owner and two of his friends (all weighting over 250 lbs each) wanted to go fishing. So they loaded the boat up with their fishing tackle, a couple of coolers with their groceries and beer, and a new heavier outboard engine that exceeded the recommend HP for that boat. Anyway they launched the boat and proceeded out onto the Willamette River. Not noticing that their gunnel was inches from the water and the outboard mount slot only had an inch or two from the water. Needless to say when the low wake of passing tugs swamped this overloaded boat. No lifejackets; two drowned trying to swim to shore and the one hanging onto the overturned boat suffered from hyprothermia.
Lesson!? Read the builder's plate and stay inside the Max weight allowed.
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