Join Date: May 2002
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Good question! Since there has been no response so far, I'll give it a shot.
I had a C22 many years ago, and vaguely recall that a little of the keel surface was brought up into a partial centerboard trunk, so that a little of the lateral surface was lost when retracted. Moreover, when the keel is retracted, the foil along the leading edge of the keel is lost. As a result, when the keel is retracted, you lose a little surface area, and a lot of the foil effect.
I sailed the boat a few times with the board up, just to see how it would behave, and it behaved about as one would expect - it sideslipped more to leeward and consequently wouldn't sail as close to the wind.
Whether you can sail on and off a mooring with the keel up depends on your skill and the amount of room you have to maneuver. If you have adequate maneuvering room, I don't see any reason why you shouldn't be able to sail on and off the mooring in ordinary conditions, but it will be more challenging than normal.
My suggestion, however, is that you use the motor to get on and off the mooring. It sounds to me as if you are likely to occasionally snag some weeds with your keel or rudder despite your best efforts, and if that happens, your boat will become nearly impossible to maneuver, and it's no fun to be on such a boat in a crowded mooring field. It's commendable that you want to learn to sail on and off your mooring, but it's difficult enough to do so without the added problem with the weeds. Others might see it differently....