Class A, B, C ??? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 02-13-2011
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Class A, B, C ???

Just a quick question..

Where can I find info on the class a particular boat fits into (A, B, C, etc) and how those classes are defined?

Thanks!
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Old 02-14-2011
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What Class A, B, C, are you talking about? If you're talking about the EU RCD Classes, they are:

A) Open Ocean, waves > 4m, Wind strength > Beaufort 8
B) Offshore, waves <=4m,Wind strength Beaufort <= 8
C) Inshore, waves <=2m, Wind strength Beaufort <= 6
D) Sheltered waters, waves <=.3 with temporary ability to withstand <=.5m, Wind strength Beaufort <= 4

In many cases the rating for a boat can change dependent on the number of people aboard.
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Old 02-14-2011
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Hey SD,

I'm not sure how to describe what I'm looking for. I've seen the classes mentioned in discussions about particular boats being blue water boats or not. I had heard that my C30 was a class C boat. And that for any serious ocean crossings (not like I'm going to attempt any) I would need a class B or A.

So I was just looking for info on what makes a particular boat fit into those classes.
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Old 02-14-2011
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These ratings which get bandied about are based on the CE Recreational Craft Directory. Recreational Craft Directive

The standards are intended to provide a uniform safety standard for small recreational watercraft. It looks at many factors which involve the safety of a small craft such as stability and downflooding, but these are only minimum standards and so do not address the suitability of any particular boat as an offshore cruiser. In other words, it does not check in a meaningful way whether the structure is adequately robust, whether the motion comfort is within a reasonable range, or whether even the small things like seaberths, adequate handholds and footholds are present.

Jeff
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Old 02-14-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
These ratings which get bandied about are based on the CE Recreational Craft Directory. Recreational Craft Directive

The standards are intended to provide a uniform safety standard for small recreational watercraft. It looks at many factors which involve the safety of a small craft such as stability and downflooding, but these are only minimum standards and so do not address the suitability of any particular boat as an offshore cruiser. In other words, it does not check in a meaningful way whether the structure is adequately robust, whether the motion comfort is within a reasonable range, or whether even the small things like seaberths, adequate handholds and footholds are present.

Jeff
I think a good example of what Jeff has said is my Catalina 310. It has an A rating. But that does not mean a smart sailor would cross the northern Atlantic or round one of the capes.
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Old 02-14-2011
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Unfortunately, the EU RCD ratings are more a legal and bureaucratic nightmare than something truly useful for the sailor to use.

Many of the A rated boats do not have the handholds and seaberths that are really a necessity for an OCEAN GOING bluewater boat. As an example, a friend of mine and his wife were delivering a larger Bendytoy that was A-rated, but the lack of handholds ending up making for a very bad experience, where his wife was tossed across the cabin in heavy weather and ended up with a couple of bruised ribs, which could have easily been much more serious.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 02-14-2011
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Hmm.. I started reading through the website mentioned above and it does indeed seem as you've described.

Are there any recommended books or other resources that discuss design, construction, best practices, etc. for solidly built boats??
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Old 02-14-2011
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Are you thinking about selling the C30 or do you want to finish it while adding upgrades along the way? What is your Atlantic plan? The “classic” US-Bermuda-Azores or ar you tinking North Atlantic? What is your budget line? Catalina’s thirty and over boats have been rated category “A” for years, so, I’m guessing your C30 is too or can be “upgraded” to that rating. As other’s stated before, the CE rating system is pretty broad and there is a wide range of boats within a given category. For what it is worth, Southernaire is a Catalina 310 that did the Single Handed Transpac last year and the owner sailed it back (with crew) after a couple week layover. That was 6,000 open ocean miles with one stop in a time span of under eight weeks. Much further than the Atlantic.

That said, no boat should “step off the curb” without some pretty extentsive modifications. Good guides to follow are the safety regs for Cat 2 and 1 races (Cat 0 is the Southern Ocean). The ISAF regs from USSAIL is excellent. Get a copy and “survey” your boat against it. Other good resources are the Singlehanded Sailing Society (SSS) and Pacific Cup websites. You can even get a copy of the PacCup's preparation handbook. I can tell you right now your two biggest problems are the lack of boat speed and very small tankage. Solve those, and get your boat to survey against Cat 1 regs and you are practically there.
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Old 02-14-2011
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I second George's recommendation of the ISAF Offshore Special Regulations. You can download them here: http://www.sailing.org/tools/documen...%5B7979%5D.pdf

There's always John Vigor's "The Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat."

Also, William Siefert's "Offshore Sailing: 200 Essential Passagemaking Tips"

Don Casey's "Inspecting the Aging Sailboat" will help you develop a sense of what things to look for on your old boat.

Richard Henderson's "Sea Sense" is out of print and somewhat dated, but still full of good stuff.

There are lots of other books out there.
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Old 02-14-2011
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Hey there GeorgeB. Excellent name. I'm actually a George C when not in front of a computer. Haha!

Well, I'm at a crossroads kinda. I do want a slightly larger and more stable boat eventually. I'm just not sure when I'd like that to happen yet. I haven't been aboard too many boats...but recently was on a Vagabond 42, Pearson 365, and a Tartan 34. All three of them immediately impressed me because they felt very solid compared to mine.

My plan would include the US East Coast south of NJ, Caribbean, Central America (east and west coasts). If I got really carried away I might be interested in the Pacific...but that would be a stretch.

I'll probably keep mine for a year or two. If the right boat comes along before then I would probably buy it though. Except, I'm not sure what the right boat is yet.

Thanks for the info! I'm gonna check out all those sources.
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