I'm kicking around the idea of building a new hull for a daysailer. I currently have a Venture 17. It actually does OK for what I need, but it's woefully slow and simply does not like to go upwind. I've added a rotating wing mast setup from a hobiecat and a high-roach main. I'm also probably going to be adding a new flatter jib this season. The new main alone has markedly improved performance, however It would really be nice to point some reasonable angle upwind.
The other big downside is that it has a small cockpit. 90% of the sailing trips are with 4 people.
So my goals in order of importance are:
Trailerable - easy to rig. I can put my venture 17 in the water and be sailing in 15 minutes. I'd like to be somewhere in that range. So I'd like to keep the rig simple. I like a sloop design. I'd prefer a rig with no spreaders, ideally something I can source from a larger beach cat to keep costs down.
Size: Something in the 17-21 ft range.
Simple operation. Ideally no winches needed. A block for sheeting the main and cam cleats for the head sail. I could add a winch if absolutely necessary.
Stable and dry. I'm a big fan of beach cats. Except for the constant wet ride, I'd probably go for something like a hobie getaway. I'm not afraid of the water, but I sail in lakes with waterskiing and big power boats. I'd like something that is reasonably dry in the cockpit. I'd also not like to dump my wife or guests in the drink. She kayaks (like big whitewater) - she's fine in the water, but I want a boat that we can also go on an evening cruise on the lake and have a beer and relax.
Large cockpit. I will never sleep on it. I would like a small cuddy to get out of the weather, but that's not necessary. I'd mostly like on-boat dry storage for the sails and various equipment. This could be a boat cover, or some type of locker or hatch at the front. I really don't care all that much. I want to make sailing easy. I want to hitch the trailer, go to the lake, sail, come home and unhitch. I don't want 30 minutes of unloading gear out of my car.
I would like good sailing performance. It doesn't need to be a race boat, but I would like it to sail well in all directions. There are no races that I'm aware of around where I live and no classes, so no reason to build to any spec other than what I want. I do like speed though.
Finally if I sell my current boat, I'll keep the hobie rig. Ideally I'd like to keep the hobie rig for regular use, and then or if I want more, buy a larger rig with bigger sails for a little excitement.
So basically I want something that will both make a nice evening cruiser/daysailer, and go fast when I want to. I like the easy build of the i550, but I don't like that it's such a wet boat and sails heeled so far. The closest boats I've come up with pre-built are the smaller Hunter series. The 170, 212, 216, and the new hunter 18 and new hunter 22. Any of which would probably be very useable. I'm not sure I can swing a $20k boat right now. That's why I'm considering building one while I sail my v17.
The SB 18 seems to be a nice intermediate boat. Probably slower than an i550, but faster than some other daysailers, can be built with a large comfortable cockpit if I modify it a bit. Does it look like a boat that could be stable enough for evening cruises even though it's more of a performance boat?
Also I have a degree in physics so I'm reasonably educated with respect to the basics of sailing, but I have no experience with boat design. My brother in law is a mechanical engineer and would be willing to draw a custom design if I wanted. If I bought a set of the sb 18 plans, I could use it as a starting point and re-draw the hull to maximize what I want. What would you change on it to make it better for the uses I want?
I'd like to hire a local shop to use a CNC router to cut all my plywood panels to make building easier.
I realize that's a lot of info, but any input is appreciated.
Here's a link to the sb18