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  #11  
Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

The entrance to fishermans bay on Lopez is another place one has to watch the tide level as you enter, with a range of -2.5 to 9' or so, at )' tide, the channel is at 5'. So when it is a -2.5, you have all of 2.5' of water to get in. Even power boats have no way in or out!

But generally speaking, for around here, deeper is better. A shoal keel will be a lower value than a deep one. If on the east coast......then I might see a shoal draft. But I would probably favor a CB model personally, that way when I had the depth, I could lower the CB for better pointing etc. When it got shallow, pull it up.

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Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

I didn't remember Fisherman's Bay being that bad, so I looked it up. At MLLW the channel gets down to 8', but that part is quite narrow. A cruising sailboat with a normal keel (~6' draft) can get in and out at any time, they just need to be careful and follow the channel markers exactly. A shoal keel gives you a little extra safety at low tide, but with a full size keel you could wait about an hour for the tide to lift and get the same benefit. Fisherman's Bay is a very nice place to spend an hour.

I quickly scanned yachtworld and don't see any local Bene 37's for sale that have shoal keels. How much money are you saving compared to the fin keel boats that are on the market?
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  #13  
Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

My personal view is to get a sailboat that points well if you are mostly going to sail in the Central Puget Sound. The wind is either from the North or South, rarely West or East. This pretty much guarantees that 50% of the time you will be going upwind. And certainly a longer keel will help. Having a spinnaker helps on the other 50% A cruising asymmetrical is a great add on. The winds are rarely above 15-18 knots, so go with light lines. Much of the time you can sail with asymmetrical alone, due to the systemic light winds (easy to pull the sock down). This will let you go 180 degrees off the wind without the main blocking.
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Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

While I agree that a gennaker / asym is a great idea for the Salish Sea, I would be remiss if I did not get on my soapbox and state that the gennakers should be flown with mainsails.

I put my main up as soon as possible and it stays up until just before docking or anchoring. I will usually keep it up with picking up a mooring ball.

The main is essential when the wind picks up and you need to blanket the gennaker to get it down. In any conditions blanketing the gennaker makes get the dousing bag down much easier.

If the main is interfering with the flow of air to the gennaker, centre the main.

I also motor with the main up and sheeted in.

[steps off soapbox, for a while]
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Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

I saw that one coming My odds were that jackdale would certainly comment.

I would not do it outside of the PS as I know these waters. But I completely understand where you are coming from.
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Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

I guess I am that predictable.

BTW - another spot where a shoal keel is helpful is Fossil Bay on Sucia. I have used lead lines to discover I would be on the bottom in a large tide.
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Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

Quote:
Originally Posted by SchockT View Post
Remember, you are only talking about a difference of about 2', but the difference in sailing performance is significant. For me a shoal draft keel is a deal killer.

It would be very strange to sail in waters that were under 6ft deep! Then again my boat has 70ft under the keel in her slip, and 5 minutes away from the dock it is about 500ft deep.
Sailed across the Mackie Shoals in the Bahamas and went hours without seeing >8 ft depth, frequently saw 5-6ft
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Old 03-07-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
I I have used lead lines to discover
Lead lines, why am I not surprised "jackdale" was the term they used before the term "old salt" hit the airways

It is great to have your talent on this forum, I enjoy your postings.
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

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Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
I didn't remember Fisherman's Bay being that bad, so I looked it up. At MLLW the channel gets down to 8', but that part is quite narrow. A cruising sailboat with a normal keel (~6' draft) can get in and out at any time, they just need to be careful and follow the channel markers exactly. A shoal keel gives you a little extra safety at low tide, but with a full size keel you could wait about an hour for the tide to lift and get the same benefit. Fisherman's Bay is a very nice place to spend an hour.

I quickly scanned yachtworld and don't see any local Bene 37's for sale that have shoal keels. How much money are you saving compared to the fin keel boats that are on the market?
The Fishermans bay marina/inn quoted me 5' at 0' of tide last time I was up there two yrs ago. With having seen the lowest tide at -2.5, an the highest at around 8-9', that gives you 11' or so total change, about on par for a bunch of the salish sea area. I've seen 14' here in Edmonds where I am. Considering the how many boats have been grounded up there, especially during the -0 tides, I'd bet you will not find 8' at the lowest of low tides. Locals say they can walk across without getting there waist wet at the lowest tides. The YC I belong to was up there last year, and there were some pics of a sailboat that got hit at the deepest part during LOW tide at the entry, and they were on there side for 2-3 hrs waiting for the tide to come in.

I also did not see any local 37's with a shoal draft. I did find a 361?!?! or some such numeral that is 36.5' long with some 5' draft setups. Those were 5-10 yrs older than any of the 37/37x oceanus/cruiser style setups. The firsts all were 6.5-7' in draft minimum.

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Old 03-08-2013
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Re: Shoal Keel in Puget Sound

MLLW is the 0 tide, not a negative tide. If you see a -2.5 then you would have a problem with a 6' keel, but those aren't very common (they happen, just not that often). It looks like the lowest low in 2013 will be a -3.1 on June 23rd, when it'll be negative for about 5 hours.

We left at about 1' over MLLW last August and didn't see anything less than 8' under the depth sounder. This was with a 4.5' draft boat. Maybe it wasn't dredged as well sometime in the past?

The only place that we've touched ground was coming out of the Swinomish Channel on the south end. There is a lot of water around, but the channel is fairly narrow and if you don't pay close attention to lining up the channel markers it is easy to touch bottom. I think we were between buoys at 8 and 10 where there is visible water everywhere, but the channel goes from 30' deep to 3' deep very quickly along the edge. That was human error and we should have been paying more attention. That was on a 4.9' draft boat.
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