Irwin - Bluewater Capable??? - Page 8 - SailNet Community
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post #71 of 79 Old 03-12-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

I can't speek to any of the small Irwins, as we are a 65, but our stantions go compeletely through the toe rail, and the flange and into a wood block which is incapsulated in glass, each stantion was orignally beddd in something that resembels 4200, there was resin in every wood block as evidenced by our drilling each one out slightly oversize and then sealing with thickened epoxy and dowling and re-boring each and then sealing again with expoy, then setting the stantion in 4200. The stantions are very, very strong...
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post #72 of 79 Old 03-14-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

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I can't speek to any of the small Irwins, as we are a 65, but our stantions go compeletely through the toe rail, and the flange and into a wood block which is incapsulated in glass, each stantion was orignally beddd in something that resembels 4200, there was resin in every wood block as evidenced by our drilling each one out slightly oversize and then sealing with thickened epoxy and dowling and re-boring each and then sealing again with expoy, then setting the stantion in 4200. The stantions are very, very strong...
Same on my 1984 38... Chuckles, All I can think of is either a repair was done incorrectly in the past on your boat to the stanchions -or- things toward the end there at Irwin got a bit unpredictable and you may have been a victim of a design change. Also is it a regular Irwin 38 or a Citation 38? Bizarre. I can quite clearly see the block areas that my stanchions go into. I have not taken them apart to verify the pass through, but the conversations with Gene that I have had indicated the 38's had the same design as the others in this regard. I specifically talked to him on the phone about getting the stanchions re-bedded down at the "Irwin" marina as the last thing I get done to her before heading out for good...

My overall understanding is that the whole point of the 38s was to be a more "bluewater" version of the popular 37. Stronger designs and options like the switchblade keel etc. were all toward that end. Mine is built like a tank. Every mechanic that has touched her here in the Annapolis area has remarked on her construction. The surveyor also fell in love with her. I'm sorry your boat isn't the same experience as mine... Really, I am. I have read though that at the end the factory was throwing things together pretty willy-nilly after Irwin died and things were falling apart. All of this is conjecture of course, but I don't know what else could explain these glaring differences other than what I put forth above.
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post #73 of 79 Old 03-14-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

This is page four from the original Irwin 65 brochure, it shows the hull deck joint very nicely. Note the joint is polyester bonded. This is one heck of a joint, minus the potential issues I mentioned earlier with using screws.
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post #74 of 79 Old 03-14-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

Just a note on this, Ted Irwin is still alive last I checked, at lease he was when he got in a boating accident back in Oct of 2010. He stopped building the last of his boats in the 90,s if my thinking is correct.
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post #75 of 79 Old 03-14-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

Here is a better view, courtesy of the Irwin yachts website. Yes as far as I know Ted is still alive.
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post #76 of 79 Old 03-14-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

That's a 65 - mine is a 38 center cockpit (not Citation).

I removed my entire push pit and re-bedded the stanchions last summer when doing the toe rail and the old 'Irwin' davit removal. Every one of them was a 2.5 inch SS screw coming out.
The rest of the stanchions will be getting pulled and refastened this summer. Most are just two screws only the pulpit and push pit areas have three screws. I'm pretty darn sure it's all original as the previous owners kept meticulous records on everything they did.
I don't anticipate any more than a three day trip offshore; it'll do.

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post #77 of 79 Old 03-14-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

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This is exactly right. The whole "bluewater boat" debate is crap for the most part.
Much more important question, "Is the Captain a bluewater Captain?"

I know it's flying, but I loved reading an account of when the US capture it's first Russian MIG and had test pilot Chuck Yeager fly against it and totally whip the pilots flying it and had the generals feeling pretty good.

Until they put Yeager in the MIG and had him fly that, at which point he whipped all of the pilots flying the US fighters.

The moral that the USAF learned, experienced and properly trained pilots were often a much more important component that which plane was actually better on paper.

Hence the fighter weapons schools the USAF and Navy put on to train pilots to do that.

If Lin and Larry Pardey had never existed, and a young couple came here and stated that they were about to do, what the Pardeys did, how badly would they be mauled by some people here (or any other sailing site)?
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post #78 of 79 Old 03-15-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

I disagree. There are a wide variety of boats out there, some much better suited for bluewater than others. But your points about the skipper are certainly valid.

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This is exactly right. The whole "bluewater boat" debate is crap for the most part.
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post #79 of 79 Old 03-15-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

I think that there are certainly many boats that are better equipped for blue water sailing right after they are built. However IMHO many of these shortcomings can be addressed, with slight modification, reinforcements, grab rails etc. Not saying that this will necessarily be cheap to do on some boats. There are some hull designs and rigs that provide for better upwind sailing etc. and some that provide much better livability. So yes, I'd agree that there are "better blue water boats" from one to the next. I think that just about any good sized sailboat can be fit out to cross oceans, is it cost effective? well I can't say that...

As to the Irwin... the 65 was built as a world cruiser, not a charter boat, contrary to popular opinion.. The first charter version was not designed until a year after mine was built. The hull and deck joint are massively constructed. The Irwin could point better than she does, and she won't win any races I think.. unless its beam seas all the way, but overall a go anywhere boat.

As to the smaller Irwins, most I've seen appear to be sound vessels that with some upgrading and some minor modification would take you anywhere you want to go. To be fair I don't have a lot of experience with the smaller Irwins, but I haven't seen a lot of difference between an Irwin and a comparable Swan of the same age. Maybe on the fit and finish, more a lack of maintenance than poor design. Irwin's were very well designed.
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Last edited by Total Chaos; 03-16-2014 at 05:49 PM.
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