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  #101  
Old 07-01-2012
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

Are you guys suggesting that maybe sailnet might be wrong?

We have a member here who just completed a circumnavigation on a Hunter.....

Another guy just posted in a old thread about doing the ARC rally in his Catalina.

And if you look through the list of entries for the ARC you will find every second boat is a Bendyslow
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  #102  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

One big thing about a blue water crossing...Luck. The OP failed because of poor planning, an inadequate testing, leaks, rudder failure, etc... and health failure of a crew member. Rough seas due to tropical storm in vicinity.

But if you take two identical boats, on a crossing one takes a rogue wave, one doesn't, (it doesn't matter how rare, or how big the rogue wave they are documented to exist).

One boat says my boat is blue water capable, because I made it across no problem, the other says I needed a much bigger, and stronger boat, because everything broke, and the boat nearly capsized, and was swamped.

Who was right? On a calm week, you can cross the Atlantic in a canoe, if you take a near miss with a class 4 hurricane, a 300ft cruise ship can be shredded to debris.

There is no boat that can take everything the ocean can dish out. All you can do, is get a solid well made ship of at least moderate size, in top condition, and watch the weather.
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  #103  
Old 07-01-2012
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

If you have to ask if a boat is ready for blue water, the answer you should be given is always no.

Why? Because if you're ready for blue water sailing, you can answer the question yourself. And if you're trying to plan for the future, well there's a 95% chance that by the time you are ready for blue water sailing, your opinion will be different then whatever you got on the internet. (There's also a 95% chance you will never cross oceans too, but I don't want to pee in your cheerios)

Learn to sail. Buy a starter boat that is popular enough to be easy to sell. Go coastal cruising. Drop the hook in a crappy anchorage and stay up all night in 30 knots of wind, while you watch 2 stars to see if the boat is dragging or not. Then sell it and upgrade, or sell it and go back to the farm.
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  #104  
Old 07-01-2012
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by n0w0rries View Post
If you have to ask if a boat is ready for blue water, the answer you should be given is always no.
That's a good point. Best answer yet!
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  #105  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guero View Post


Ahh, the constant bashing from the internet experts, who don't own a Catalina, Beneteau or Hunter, but they know this guy who knows another guy who had this and that happen to their boat.

My Hunter 410 didn't disintegrate either, it also didn't sink, and *absolutly nothing* broke during a cruise from Florida to Cuba and then Mexico, despite getting hit with pretty bad weather during the crossing of the Yucatan channel.
Ahh, and yet another anecdotal example of another safe passage made in a popular production boat, thus rendering moot any and all design and construction CHARACTERISTICS of true offshore boats, and "proving" that virtually any "brand" is just as suitable as any other for bluewater sailing...(grin, bigtime)

I really wish we could steer these discussions away from brands, and focus rather on characteristics that determine a particular boat's suitability for offshore passagemaking... But, the "naming names" appears to be a necessary shorthand, I suppose...

Getting back to the original poster's cite, however - do you think that boat was a good example of proof that that particular model was suitable for passagemaking? Here are the most salient points of that report, for me:

Quote:

Log notes say "rough and lumpy, everything wet."

Everything means just that, everything. Cushions, sleeping bags, navigation station, radios, GPS, log notes. Except for the aft cabin, there was not a dry spot in the house. Surprisingly, zip-lock bags, even when securely sealed, can accumulate copious amounts of water. Cans rust rapidly and all our clothing was soaked.

...

On Tuesday, June 30, we were sailing close to a rhumb line toward Oahu. My log notes once again that the conditions were "rough and lumpy" and that "everything is wet." We were experiencing water over the deck which was finding it's way inside through hatches, dorades, windows, mast member and deck fittings. In sailing the waters of Catalina and environs, we seldom took water on the deck and hence never experienced any seepage that was of any consequence.

...

In reality all was not well. In addition to our soaked interior, the seas were remaining exceptionally lumpy with numerous large "graybeards" frequently giving us great broadside "wacks" and 25 knot winds.

...

On port tack PANDA was clearly taking on more water. Being below decks was like being in a tropical rain forest, except for the fact that it was cold. Duffel bags and the once dry clothing in those duffel bags were not merely damp, but soaked.
I don't know about you, but for me, Priority #1 is keeping the water outside of the boat. That includes water coming in from either below, or above, the waterline... Few things over the course of an offshore passage will so quickly lead to prolonged discomfort, demoralization and exhaustion of the crew, and present a real danger to the ability to keep vital systems up and running, than dealing with copious and persistent topside leaks... Time and time again, water getting below, in amounts and into places it shouldn't, is the first step in the classic progression of Cascading Failures...

Now, I suppose it's possible that this particular boat is some sort of "outlier" among all the couple of hundred of other Catalina 36s of that vintage, that NONE of the others would have leaked to that extent when faced with 25 knots offshore... Possible, yes - but in my opinion, not bloody likely...

In my experience, when a 14-year old boat leaks to the extent the author describes, it's not just hatches, portlights, etc... Usually, the hull to deck joint is a primary culprit... Some may think that a through-bolted mechanical fastening of the hull to deck on 4" centers is overkill, and self-tapping fasteners every 6" or even more are usually "good enough"... Well, people are free to believe what they want to believe, of course... (grin)

But again, I wish we would center these discussions on the importance of features such as a hull to deck joint, or the integrity of the topsides and decks from leaks... For example, one of the best arguments IMHO in favor of aluminum construction, is that it generally produces a vessel that will come as close as possible to being watertight when inverted, as it is when floating on her lines... that's the sort of thing I'd like to see addressed in these "Bluewater Threads", rather than simply bandying about different brand names...

Just my opinions, of course... I'm no internet "expert", for sure - but, for the umpteenth time here, I can certainly point you in the direction of some...



Quote:
Originally Posted by Guero View Post
And when it's on the hard, if I knock on the fiber glass, my fist doesn't go through the fiber glass an it ain't soft.
Well, I should certainly hope so...

However, what do you suppose most would make of such an assessment, if they were to come across it on the copy of the survey just done on a boat they were considering for an Atlantic Circle? (grin)

Last edited by JonEisberg; 07-01-2012 at 01:12 PM.
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  #106  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

John Neale has a fairly comprehensive list of desirable (in his judgement) characteristics as well as a list of boats with those characteristics. You can probably identify other boats that should be on the list.

Mahina Expedition - Selecting A Boat for Offshore Cruising
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  #107  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
John Neale has a fairly comprehensive list of desirable (in his judgement) characteristics as well as a list of boats with those characteristics. You can probably identify other boats that should be on the list.

Mahina Expedition - Selecting A Boat for Offshore Cruising
Uh-oh, now you've done it...

Not a single offering from Beneteau, Catalina, or Hunter makes his list... Oh, well - what does John Neal know about bluewater sailing, anyway? (grin)

As you say, "fairly comprehensive" is the operative word, there... FWIW, I'd take a Frers-designed Beneteau First Series from the 80's in a heartbeat to take me anywhere I'd care to sail...

And, while it's not my cup of tea at all, I'd have little hesitation delivering a Hunter HC-50, or a boat like Michael's 49, to a place like the Caribbean...

I thought the HC-50 was a pretty cool boat, you've gotta love a 50-footer that was offered with a tiller as an option... Probably one of the least popular models Hunter ever built, however - a case where "their market" spoke volumes...
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  #108  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

Some friends have sailed with John Neale; interesting stories.

I would probably sail an HC-50 myself; one has done the Vic Maui race.

I am delivering a C&C 44 (also not on the list, but meets ISAF category 1 offshore standards) from Lahaina to Vancouver. It is not a comfortable boat upwind when it pounds. I can see why it is not on Neale's list.

I have also taken a Nauticat 37 (very tender) and a Saga 409 (head is way too big) 50-60 miles offshore successfully.

The Hylas 46 is on his list, but I found that the lack of sea berths was a major PITA.
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  #109  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

While I agree with mostly everything you are saying, and anecdotal evidence of a boat doing a certain trip once certainly doesn't prove that it is an ideal specimen for blue water, how do we then explain that every third if not second boat in the ARC is a modern production cruiser??

Interestingly I spent sometime living aboard in Port Bundaberg here in Australia, the main port of entry for yachts here in Oz. The boats coming into here, Americans/Canadians having done a trans-pacific, Europeans with two oceans under their belt, New Zealanders doing a Pacific loop or Aussies completing a circumnavigation were largely NOT modern production coastal cruisers.
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  #110  
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Re: Is she bluewater? Interesting story to help with these questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chall03 View Post
While I agree with mostly everything you are saying, and anecdotal evidence of a boat doing a certain trip once certainly doesn't prove that it is an ideal specimen for blue water, how do we then explain that every third if not second boat in the ARC is a modern production cruiser??

Interestingly I spent sometime living aboard in Port Bundaberg here in Australia, the main port of entry for yachts here in Oz. The boats coming into here, Americans/Canadians having done a trans-pacific, Europeans with two oceans under their belt, New Zealanders doing a Pacific loop or Aussies completing a circumnavigation were largely NOT modern production coastal cruisers.
I think you answered your own question - many, if not most of the people who join the ARC do so precisely BECAUSE they are inexperienced at blue water sailing. Inexperience and a less than ideal boat for the purpose sort of go hand in hand.

Anyone who makes it across the Pacific, or even attempts it, is not likely to fall into that category.
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