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Old 11-22-2012
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preferred keel for the caribbean

What would be the best keel for someone wanting to sail the Caribbean? I really like the idea of being able to beach this boat but I am interested in how stable they are if you are making a crossing of 80+ miles between islands. Would it be better to just have a full keel with a dingy to get into shallows and into some islands?
I understand this is a rather general question and will rely mostly on personal preference but I would just like some input. I really appreciate any advice. Thank you.
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Old 11-22-2012
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Re: preferred keel for the caribbean

Most of the Caribbean area, esp the Windwards and Leewards you're sailing between islands in deep water. We routinely anchored in 5-7 meters of water, sailing a boat with a 7 foot draft. I don't think you'd have any serious draft restrictions except in places like Barbuda where there are some pretty skinny bits of water and anchorages..

Cant speak to the BVIs or USVs but I would think it's similar. The Bahamas are known for extensive areas of shoals, but even there people seem to make to with 4-5 foot draft.

Not my cup of tea, but the recent popularity of catamarans kind of removes that issue altogether...
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Old 11-22-2012
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Re: preferred keel for the caribbean

The more time i spend fumbling my way through the fundamentals of hull design, the more i appreciate v-hull catamarans like the wharrams. They aren't a great choice for sailing where there are actual seasons, but for caribbean cruising and gunkholing the bahamas, a you ng guy could do much worse.
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Old 11-24-2012
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Re: preferred keel for the caribbean

I always like the full keel, I just feel so much more at ease when the weather picks up.
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