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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Production boats- justified bias?
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Topic Review (Newest First)
01-02-2013 11:33 AM
PCP
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

This comes from further back on this thread. I knew about these videos but I could not find them at the time and they are interesting in what regards to show the solidity of a narrow well built keel in what regards its attachment to the hull.

The boat is a Sigma 400, a light performance production cruiser from the 90's and still today a light and competitive boat (7500kg) by today's standards, a boat well ahead of its time. That boat was still in fact a local champion and a race winner, it has a big draft (2.29m) ballasted keel. It is a design from Rob Humphries the same designer of the Elan 400. We can see that not only its keel stood up but even the more fragile ruder is still in one piece. Off course the boat needs probably to be repaired but this was just not a sigle hit but a massive pounding.

Great story here:

http://www.skerriesnews.ie/files/may12.pdf

Sigma 400 Boats for Sale





01-02-2013 09:32 AM
PCP
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
That is a very good point, lots of merit to that argument, no doubt... Offshore sailors/cruisers tend to be more conservative and harder to convince, no question...

That First 45 is a beautifully executed boat, perhaps it will become a preferred passagemaker of the future... Still, I see some things I wonder about...

Pretty striking how difficult it is to find one pictured with a dodger, for one... There is not even a coaming built into the deckhouse to accommodate the fitting of one... With all those lines run aft along the coachroof back into the cockpit, it's gonna be a bit of a chore to fit a dodger that has much in the way of watertight integrity...

Bottom line, however, is the base price of that boat, roughly $450K USD... When I start poking around Yachtworld, and see what one could have for that kind of money in an older boat from a builder like Morris, Alden, Sweden, etc - well, seems like a no-brainer, to me...
Most photos you find on the boat are promotional photos from Benetau. They don't feature a dodger because the boat looks sexier without one.

A dodger is available as an optional equipment in that boat as in the vast majority of boats. Cruisers use them almost always. Here you have two different ones with the boat dodger:





Regarding prices here you have a 2007 First 50 from 2007 for 270 000 euros:

BENETEAU FIRST 50 S - Ano : 2007 - EYB

and a 2008 First 45 for 244 163 USD

2008 Beneteau First 45 Power Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

Regarding comparing prices of 5 year old boats with the prices of 20 or 30 year old boats, luxury or not, you can only be kidding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post

If my prop ever comes remotely close to coming out of the water, I've got far bigger problems than my prop coming out of the water...
Some times you talk about the superior performance of a given sailing boat as a decisive factor in the choice of a boat and regarding that a propeller near the surface is also a bad choice. Many years ago, sailing not in dangerous weather but on a very uncomfortable one (left overs of a storm, big short steep waves, no wind, strong current against the wave direction) trying to comply with the request of a friend to arrive at Port in time for him not to miss a train, I just blew out the engine probably because the engine was sucking air on the cooling system. I should not have insisted but I was young and foolish.

Also long time ago I had a friend with a big steel boat that only give pleasure sailing with high winds and we used to go out in force 9/10 for having fun. I remember sailing at 12K on that big heavy boat and the image of passing fast 20m fishing boats, that were bouncing around sometimes with the propeller out of the water, is one that I would never forget. His boat, like mine, was on a very busy fishing port and he had quite a reputation as a sailor among fishermen and they don't have normally a lot of respect for pleasure sailors.

Anyway a lot of sailboats have a shaft propeller system almost as down as the one of a saildrive and that would not be a motive of concern and even with one nearer the surface as yours, well, you would only have to take that into consideration, it has disadvantages, but as you say, also advantages.

Regarding that do you know this system? Not really expensive as a safety item. I am considering having one:

http://www.piplers.co.uk/3336/Beucha...iving-Kit.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
... Needless to say, best not get me started on the proliferation of these freakin' Dock n' Go training wheel setups for people who can't handle a boat, but have more money than they know what to do with... (grin)
Modern 50 ft are very easy to sail and are rigged to be sailed by two people and offer an added security in what concerns sailing offshore, offering a more stable platform than a smaller boat. There is also needed a bigger breaking wave to capsize them. What prevented the use of those boats by a couple in what regards autonomy was the difficulty to dock the boat on a marina, in and out. Those joystick systems made just that not only possible but easy.

Of course, as all systems they can fail and the more complicated even more but we ride on very complicated cars, fully of electronic controls and not on old very basic ones and their reliability is very high.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
No, that's only a 13" prop, and my engine is a 29 HP Perkins Perama, it's a pretty good match...
That was also the engine power I had on the Bavaria 36 that had a two blade autoprop. I guess both were recommended by autoprop technicians so probably it is to due to your boat being considerably heavier.

Have a nice year, "bom vento" (as we say) to you.

Regards

Paulo
01-01-2013 11:21 PM
JonEisberg
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
Jon, sometimes there are needed many years for naturally more conservative cruisers to find out that some of today's performance cruisers are just great cruisers. Try to remember and you will see that at the time those First were on the market as new boats, cruisers at that time regarded them as racing boats unfit for any serious cruising.

The same happened when the Vaillant 40 arrived at the market.

As I have said there are a huge variety of cruising boats and cruising hulls, mostly in Europe were more sailboats are sold. I will suggest you to try to sail the current First 45 or the 50 and I guess you will find out that they are great offshore cruising boats. I am sure that they will be regarded in the future as great bluewater cruising boats. They don't have the flat underbodies you are talking about and have a great cruising interior, one that certainly would be more than adequate for me. Take a look (First 45):
That is a very good point, lots of merit to that argument, no doubt... Offshore sailors/cruisers tend to be more conservative and harder to convince, no question...

That First 45 is a beautifully executed boat, perhaps it will become a preferred passagemaker of the future... Still, I see some things I wonder about...

Pretty striking how difficult it is to find one pictured with a dodger, for one... There is not even a coaming built into the deckhouse to accommodate the fitting of one... With all those lines run aft along the coachroof back into the cockpit, it's gonna be a bit of a chore to fit a dodger that has much in the way of watertight integrity...

Bottom line, however, is the base price of that boat, roughly $450K USD... When I start poking around Yachtworld, and see what one could have for that kind of money in an older boat from a builder like Morris, Alden, Sweden, etc - well, seems like a no-brainer, to me...

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
The advantage you refer of having the propeller near the surface will turn quickly in a disadvantage trying to come out of a port with big waves or in any other situation you need the engine with big waves and no wind. Those conditions will bring the propeller in and out of the water resulting in a very reduced efficiency and potential mechanic problems.
If my prop ever comes remotely close to coming out of the water, I've got far bigger problems than my prop coming out of the water...

You make some good arguments in favor of a saildrive, but I still don't like them... (grin)

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
I believe we will see more and more the use of saildrives that can turn around giving you almost for free a stern thruster. The diminished maneuverability in port that the two rudder system provide would make necessary or at least very desirable a solution like that. Those saildrives are already used as part of the system on modern docking solutions for bigger boats.
I'm afraid you are correct about that one...

One hour into the start of one of my deliveries this fall, I was sitting at the fuel dock at the Annapolis Yacht Basin, minding my own business while taking on fuel... A 35' powerboat was maneuvering alongside, when he suffered what he claimed to be a "software issue" with his Joystick/Pod Drive system, and came dangerously close to clouting my boat with his... Needless to say, best not get me started on the proliferation of these freakin' Dock n' Go training wheel setups for people who can't handle a boat, but have more money than they know what to do with... (grin)

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
I see that you have a Brunton's propeller. I had also one and they are great but I am a bit surprised to see a 3 blades in the one in your boat. I am sure it is correct but I am curious. Your boat needs more than a 30hp engine?

Regards

Paulo
No, that's only a 13" prop, and my engine is a 29 HP Perkins Perama, it's a pretty good match...
01-01-2013 10:17 PM
SloopJonB
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
Now, don't get me started on opening ports in some of those sexy, ridiculously sloped cabin sides, that need to be closed back up for every passing rain shower... (grin) I'll take one of these clunky, hopelessly passe' vertical deckhouses, any day...

I think I could learn to live with it as well.
01-01-2013 09:42 PM
JonEisberg
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShoalFinder View Post
Something I've been wondering about which this thread hasn't covered...

What about livability? Of course, the best go-anywhere boat from an engineering standpoint would have no windows and be built like a tank. (Can't leak if there are no openings to the weather or sea.) But when we step away from the theoretical, we have to have a boat that someone can actually stand to be on, and God forbid, possibly enjoy sailing.

My question is about the climate you intend to sail. If I were in the extreme North or South where the weather is horrible and cold, I want the best weatherproof shelter I can find. However, between those latitudes where the majority of humanity lives and thrives- it gets hot and humid. Weatherproof also means breeze-proof.

I see a lot of boat with almost zero ventilation. While this would be vastly superior for seaworthiness, can anyone stand to go below during the daytime?

Where would you trade some inherent safety for livability, design-wise?

I love the general design of the Endeavors / Irwins I see for sale. Lots of opening ports for ventilation, and open cabins for air circulation. Obviously not the boat one would feel most secure in the Roaring 40s, but likewise I cannot imagine spending time in the Caribbean or even the Southern US, in a boat without a lot of opening ports.

I lived two years in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba working tugboats. Sleeping at night went like this: Lie in bed sweltering. Wait ten minutes for your sweat to completely soak your bedding so that you are laying in a sopping sponge of your own sweat. Once completely wet, evaporation would begin to cool you off enough to sleep.

I don't care to live like that anymore. So what desgin factors are you guys willing to compromise perfection in order to have a boat you want to be on?
Another great point. And another reason that there is absolutely no one-size-fits-all solution.

Nothing wrong with picture windows...as long as they don't leak.
Well, that's a mighty big "IF"...

For ShoalFinder, it's a mistaken assumption that to believe "liveability" is not a primary consideration in a voyaging boat... There is an entire chapter dedicated to the subject of Ventilation in the source I repeatedly refer to in these discussions, DESIRABLE AND UNDESIRABLE CHARACTERISTICS OF OFFSHORE YACHTS, after all...

Unfortunately, this is another area where many American production boats fall well short of the mark... With their almost exclusive use of forward-opening hatches, and rarity of those "outmoded" Dorade vents, many of today's production boats need to be buttoned up pretty tight, in any conditions where spray might be coming aboard... With an aft-facing main hatch, I can leave mine open and drawing in all but the worst of weather...



And, I've yet to see a more practical and elegant solution to ventilation offshore than Rod Stephen's old-fashioned Dorade vent, and yet they seem to be increasingly rare on today's modern boats...




Wanna know what the solution to ventilation on the Trintella 50 was in the tropics, when water was coming aboard?

Fire up the generator, and run the AC... It's amazing how many boats I see nowadays, where that seems to be the approach to "climate control"...

Now, don't get me started on opening ports in some of those sexy, ridiculously sloped cabin sides, that need to be closed back up for every passing rain shower... (grin) I'll take one of these clunky, hopelessly passe' vertical deckhouses, any day...

01-01-2013 08:08 PM
PCP
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShoalFinder View Post
Something I've been wondering about which this thread hasn't covered...

.....
My question is about the climate you intend to sail. If I were in the extreme North or South where the weather is horrible and cold, I want the best weatherproof shelter I can find. However, between those latitudes where the majority of humanity lives and thrives- it gets hot and humid. Weatherproof also means breeze-proof.

I see a lot of boat with almost zero ventilation. While this would be vastly superior for seaworthiness, can anyone stand to go below during the daytime?

Where would you trade some inherent safety for livability, design-wise?

....
I don't care to live like that anymore. So what desgin factors are you guys willing to compromise perfection in order to have a boat you want to be on?
You make the right questions but the answers are out there. You have just to look at the kind of boats that are used to cruise and live aboard on the North of Europe (if someone has the money to buy them) and on the South :



Solaris ONE 44 from Richard Langdon on Vimeo.



Two very seawothy boats with great interiors, the difference is that one favors living inside and the other outside, including sailing. The reasons for this different focus are obvious and have to do with climate.

You have several manufacturers of bluewater pilot/deck salons....all in the North of Europe because that is there where those boats make sense and where they are sold (I am not referring to false deck salons that are designed not to be sailed from the interior but just to have a bigger interior space).

Regards

Paulo
01-01-2013 07:20 PM
smackdaddy
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by minnewaska View Post
absolutely true, but you overgeneralize the point about these ratios as well. All boats and sailors have their limits and you must respect them. Either try to avoid conditions beyond your boats capability or, rather than continue to pound through them, understand you'll be hanging on a drogue longer than a more capable boat. Both boats can still make the passage.

I do understand that my boat is not an all-purpose any condition boat. None really are. You need to understand what it can and can't do and manage that properly. Otherwise, she is perfectly capable of handling rough weather. Do her bulkhead tabs have the same strength of some others? Nope. I know a sister ship that has sailed from newport to tortola and back about a half dozen times. He has minor alignment issues with doors now. However, the boat has made the trip without any trouble and he absolutely loves the platform for its all around usefullness, not simply whether she was made to hunt hurricanes. As i do.
^^^^^^^this!
01-01-2013 07:16 PM
smackdaddy
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShoalFinder View Post
Something I've been wondering about which this thread hasn't covered...

What about livability? Of course, the best go-anywhere boat from an engineering standpoint would have no windows and be built like a tank. (Can't leak if there are no openings to the weather or sea.) But when we step away from the theoretical, we have to have a boat that someone can actually stand to be on, and God forbid, possibly enjoy sailing.

My question is about the climate you intend to sail. If I were in the extreme North or South where the weather is horrible and cold, I want the best weatherproof shelter I can find. However, between those latitudes where the majority of humanity lives and thrives- it gets hot and humid. Weatherproof also means breeze-proof.

I see a lot of boat with almost zero ventilation. While this would be vastly superior for seaworthiness, can anyone stand to go below during the daytime?

Where would you trade some inherent safety for livability, design-wise?

I love the general design of the Endeavors / Irwins I see for sale. Lots of opening ports for ventilation, and open cabins for air circulation. Obviously not the boat one would feel most secure in the Roaring 40s, but likewise I cannot imagine spending time in the Caribbean or even the Southern US, in a boat without a lot of opening ports.

I lived two years in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba working tugboats. Sleeping at night went like this: Lie in bed sweltering. Wait ten minutes for your sweat to completely soak your bedding so that you are laying in a sopping sponge of your own sweat. Once completely wet, evaporation would begin to cool you off enough to sleep.

I don't care to live like that anymore. So what desgin factors are you guys willing to compromise perfection in order to have a boat you want to be on?
Another great point. And another reason that there is absolutely no one-size-fits-all solution.

Nothing wrong with picture windows...as long as they don't leak.
01-01-2013 05:15 PM
PCP
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
First thing that catches my eye in the comparison of those two boats, is yet ANOTHER trend I don't like in many of today's production boats... (grin)

Namely, the increasing use of saildrives... The principal advantage of them is to the builder, as their installation greatly simplifies the build - but there seems little to recommend them over a conventional shaft drive to the end user, mostly what I see are downsides, that are not overruled by their very few advantages ...

Needless complexity - why induce 2 right angles, into a drivetrain that could otherwise be direct?

BIG hole in the bottom of the boat, the potential for corrosion issues, and in some saildrives, the boat needs to be hauled simply to change the unit's gear oil... that's just insane...

Their typical placement further away from the rudder greatly reduces the effect of propwash against the rudder, making them less effective in close-quarter, slow speed maneuvering...

I'm a big believer in having the prop as accessible as possible from above the water, or as close to the end of the boat as possible... If you've ever had to dive on a prop to clear it of a line, or similar, you will greatly appreciate the difference of having to do so on the 2 boats pictured above... The location of that saildrive would make it very difficult to free-dive on it, much more so than the prop on the Beneteau... One of the downsides of today's boats with very beamy aft sections, getting to the prop - by either diving on it, or using a hook knife on a pole - is gonna be a lot more work on many modern boats, than on a boat like mine, with much finer ends...

I'm actually able to at least touch my prop without even putting my head underwater, so it's very easy to dive on, and in the couple of times I've caught a wrap on the prop, I've always managed to cut if free from the cockpit, without even having to put my dinghy over the side...

When I had the first boat with a saildrive, more than 10 years ago, I had about the same distrust as you and for the same reasons. If I could I would have the same boat with a conventional drive. At that time the boats that had saildrives were a minority and not as today where almost all use it, including for instance Halberg Rassy and many very expensive boats. As you can imagine in what regards to expensive boats they use it because they consider it a better system and I don't think it is a cheaper one anyway.

From one engine brand using Saildrive (Volvo-Penta) you have now all brands using saildrive as the most common system by far.

10 years after I understands better the advantages and become assured in what seemed to be the disadvantages. While I have heard of several boats sunk with problems with the conventional system (shaft broken, ingress of water) I don't know of a single one that went down with a faulty saildrive ring and are tens of thousand using it.

The main advantages are absence of vibration, silence, less maintenance (one time each 7 years) and completely watertight.

The advantage you refer of having the propeller near the surface will turn quickly in a disadvantage trying to come out of a port with big waves or in any other situation you need the engine with big waves and no wind. Those conditions will bring the propeller in and out of the water resulting in a very reduced efficiency and potential mechanic problems.

That's not by accident that today the actual successor of Mark's boat on Beneteau (the 41 and all the others) use sail-drive.

You are right regarding the disadvantage of maneuvering in port but today's boats with skinny keels turn in their own length and besides, at least here, the normal final approach is in reverse to have the boat with the bow to the outside and in that situation you have no advantage having the propeller nearer the rudder.

Anyway I believe that the standard will become quickly the two rudder system that has many advantages (not only for boats with a fat transom) and that would make completely irrelevant in what concerns maneuvering to have or not saildrive.

I believe we will see more and more the use of saildrives that can turn around giving you almost for free a stern thruster. The diminished maneuverability in port that the two rudder system provide would make necessary or at least very desirable a solution like that. Those saildrives are already used as part of the system on modern docking solutions for bigger boats.

I see that you have a Brunton's propeller. I had also one and they are great but I am a bit surprised to see a 3 blades in the one in your boat. I am sure it is correct but I am curious. Your boat needs more than a 30hp engine?

Regards

Paulo
01-01-2013 05:07 PM
danielgoldberg
Re: Production boats- justified bias?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonEisberg View Post
That's what I've always considered to be the primary drawback to the Leisure-Furl, the incredible weight of the boom on a bigger boat... The fittings at the gooseneck, and vang, have got to be massively overbuilt, the loads can be enormous...

Sailing that Trintella 50, with such a massive main, one of my biggest fears was always an accidental jibe... And, with the deeply swept-back spreaders on that rig (another modern production boat trend I'm not a fan of on a cruising boat), sailing deep downwind that was always a possibility...

I can't imagine having to deal with a broken gooseneck on a L-F boom, on a boat of that size... You were lucky no one was hurt, in that episode...
It's a pretty interesting story, but the truth is it never felt "dangerous." It's not like the whole thing "blew up" or anything. First thing though, just to clarify, it wasn't a Leisurefurl. It was a Furlboom. Main difference is that the furling drum is below the boom, aft of the mast. My personal opinion is that this is better than the Leisurefurl drum being forward of the mast, where it catches jib sheets, etc.

Anyway, our situation occurred during our first rally event in 2008. We were about halfway to Bermuda, with a reefed main. Then all of the sudden, the main started unrolling from the boom, which is how we knew something was wrong. Because we were reaching, and that boom furling mains feed into a luff groove on the mast, we had a hard time getting the main down, but managed.

We were on a Freedom 45, and if you know the boat, the main is large and the jib is tiny. Being without the main is a real issue. Thankfully, the wind was aft of the beam, so we were able to get the chute up and go with that for a bit. But then the wind moved forward and went very light. We were a motorboat at that point, as a practical matter. Problem was, we weren't sure if we had enough fuel. We were calculating and recalculating almost constantly, or at least I was!

Then the story got interesting, as we came across a cruise ship, and we were able to raise them. They agreed to give us some diesel, and it was a very cool experience. They launched a boat, put in a crew, all helmeted and ready for battle. They gave us 30 gallons of diesel in kitchen cooking oil containers! We were able to make it in to Bermuda where we effected repairs. We have a little bit of a write-up here, with some pics: 2008 Event.

There was also an article in Lats&Atts, but I can't seem to find it.

Sorry for the hijack, but it's a cool story, so figured I'd share.
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