"I'm really sick of this blank blank boat, I haven't sailed it in 5 years,
all I do is pay the marina for storage, give me $XXXX for the boat
and take her off my hands".
I'm sure this happens, has not happened to me, but I'm sure it
What could the buyer do? Say the buyer looks at the boat and thinks,
she is longer than I wanted, but figures he/she could overcome that
part of her operation.
Since economics (I 'want' vs I 'need'), let's frame answers to your questions accordingly:
Length affects cost of moorage. Volume affects the cost of everything else.
And then the buyer looks at the rig. The buyer
looks at the mast, the set up, and thinks... whew; that will be lots of
It might be, but then you need to look into methods, means, and costs of sail handling gear. What's already on the boat? Lazy jacks? Furler? A nice luff car system and fully battened main? All of the above? None? If none, then what's it going to cost to manage that sail area? By the way, what condition are the sails in? If they're beat, then you'll have to budget for that as well. If they're beat, but you're going to get by with them, be aware how much a bagged main will negatively affect the performance and ease of sail handling on your $XXXX boat.
Is it conceivable, use smaller sails on a particular mast. To reduce the
power of the boat, so the operator would be under control?
Sure. Use a non-overlapping headsail instead of a genoa. Make sure you have a good reefing system for the main. (I'm partial to good old slab)
Would this just be a waste of time?
What about a smaller mast? Is is ever wise to reduce the mast size,
replace a ?? racing boat mast with a ??? cruising boat mast, therefore
reducing the sail area etc?
A new rig is an expensive proposition. Unless it needs one, I'd stay away from this idea... very far away. We haven't even talked about all the $ needed to re-cut sails to fit your new rig, and yes, it isn't cheap.
Is it hard to sell a mast, and then find another one to take its place?
Depends on the boat, but in general, yes, it's hard to unload an old spar. Finding a new mast isn't that difficult. Selden, Hall Spars, Ballenger, etc... make great spars. Again, it's just that pesky $$$$ )
I got thinking about this as I was reading some old cruising boat books.
It seemed to me, that the length of the boat isn't the overwhelming
obstacle, it is the rig, with the large sails, etc.
And then I thought :: what if .. ???
And here's where the volume comes in.. Bottom paint. General maintainence. Running rigging (higher volume, higher loads, bigger gear, beefier line required.. it's expensive), hardware, sails (bigger to push that volume) Bottom line, there's a very good reason boats nearly double in price for every increase in 5' of length. Honestly, you might be better off keeping your smaller boat and buying a ski pass for you family during the winter months. You'll come out way ahead!