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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > What to do about a low bridge?
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Thread: What to do about a low bridge? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
04-27-2010 05:17 PM
jcalvinmarks If they're looking for a smallish daysailer, and they're within driving distance (however you define that) of Baltimore, then why not pick up this little gem:

Pepper 15 sailboat for sale

That mast looks like it's 15'3" above the water. 23* of heel to get it under at low tide; looks like you could make that happen just by hiking.

Just something to consider. It's a pretty little boat.
04-27-2010 04:53 PM
MarkCK
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomandchris View Post
I know that are lots of engenious ways to accomplish this sort of thing...but you really have to wonder how long the romance will last. If you watch the video you see the complex nature of what this guy does( and he has it down), and then put yourself in his place with 4 of your friends in the boat with you. How many times are you really going to do this in a given week, month, year? Not many I would guess.

If you really want a sailboat find a neighbor on the other side of the bridge and become good friends. If you really want to use a boat, and it has to be on your side of the bridge, buy a powerboat! That you MAY use.

I agree. I dont see may sailboat owners that keep their boats on the wrong side of the bridge. The first couple of time it wont seem like that big of a deal, but it wont be long before you stop going out just due to all the hassle. You might try a small sailing dingy that has a really light wieght short mast. Then again without the ballast of a keel boat it my be a little tippy trying to raise and lower it while on the water.
04-27-2010 03:25 PM
klem That is quite a video. I wouldn't want to be the one responsible for doing it.

What about looking at a boat that has a short enough mast to clear the bridge so that you don't need to drop it. This generally means that you need a way to get the same sail area with a shorter mast. This can be accomplished with lug rigged, sprit rigged and gaff rigged vessels. If you are looking for something large enough for the family, a ketch would probably be necessary.

Unfortunately, you are not likely to find any production boats rigged like this but there are lots of old pulling boats, whaleboats, etc that are rigged this way. They certainly are not sporty but they might have a higher enjoyment factor if you don't mess around with dropping the mast all the time.
04-27-2010 02:33 PM
jcalvinmarks I don't know if anyone else has seen this video:

YouTube - Boat Balls

It's a pretty ingenious idea, I think. That's a pretty hefty rig in the video, so I'm not sure how well that would scale down to the size of a boat that would fit under an 11' bridge. My quick arithmetic tells me that at low tide (14' clearance) and running a full 45* heel, a mast height of just under 20' above the water would clear. I would think that you'd have a hard time underway with all that weight suspended from the top of the mast at any greater than 45* over.

Which makes the list of conventional sloop rigs that fit the bill pretty awful short. Gunter- or gaff-riggers might make more sense in this situation.

I lowered the mast on my Hunter 18.5 single-handed at the dock not too long ago to replace the Windex and topping lift, and that was no fun at all. And I wasn't even underway. So unless you have a really slick system worked out for lowering the mast while underway, you might find it to be more trouble than it's worth.
04-24-2010 11:59 PM
Siamese Check out the Horizon Cat from Com-Pac. The mast hinges just above the boom, so you can leave the main furled to the boom when you lower the mast.
04-24-2010 11:16 PM
Boasun Good Old Boat Magazine had an article awhile back about a senior couple who had a tabinacle made for their boat for raising & lowering the mast on their boat.
My mags are at my office, but you could quiry GOB about it. That tabinacle is well built and should last the life time of that boat.
04-24-2010 09:50 PM
poopdeckpappy Oh good, it's safe to climb out of the wet locker now, it was scary dark in here
04-24-2010 09:29 PM
sailingdog Yes, and unlike the scow barge you sail, mine can make a bridge with that kind of clearance...

Quote:
Originally Posted by poopdeckpappy View Post
SD, he said the family is considering a sailboat
04-24-2010 03:18 PM
hudi11 Thanks for the advice everyone, we're probably looking at getting a Catalina 25, so its good to see that mast stepping is doable on one, especially with that StepUp mast stepper. One final newb question: What if any modifications need to be done in order to make the mast so easily detachable (and how much would it cost)?
04-24-2010 02:38 PM
funsailthekeys Great video, Catalina couldn't do any better!
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