Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 34 Old 03-04-2017 Thread Starter
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I have been sailing since well before I could drive, owning several sunfish and Hobie Cat sailboats. I'm now in my last year of med school and I decided it was time to get back into sailing (school has a way of sucking up any lake days) but with something a little bit more grown up.

I purchased a ComPAC 16 thinking that having both the cockpit and a cabin would make me feel like I'm sailing on a 'real boat'. And don't get me wrong, I have thoroughly enjoyed it. However my experience closer to the water on the small boats and the thrill that comes with it isn't quite satiated on the ComPAC. I feel like it's a little sluggish and unresponsive. I also have found out that I don't care about having a cabin at all. In fact I'd rather not have one and have more room for friends on the boat. it takes a few boats to realize what you want out of them, so the ComPAC was a good stepping stone for me.

But now I want something that has some speed behind it. I'm used to the small boats and catamarans so heeling high up on one side is by no means an issue to me. I've lurked on this site for quite a while now and I thought I was going to like a Hunter 170 till I read how slow they are. Capri 16s seem closer to the fit but I'm just not sure. Flying Scots have also really caught my eye. So I need some advice from folks with experience.

Here's my priorities out of the boat I want:

1. Has to be trailerable. I don't have a slip and can't afford one. I have a decent sized V6 SUV so towing shouldn't be an issue. Just need to be able to get it rigged up and in the water quick enough to make it worth while (the ComPAC I can get in the water in 30 min).

2. My budget is around 5k, 8 would be pushing it. Really prefer to keep it lower but good boats cost money.

3. A large enough cockpit for 4 adults to sail. May be hard with it needing to be trailerable, I figured I'm looking in the 17-22 foot range but open to suggestions. Bigger is not necessarily better to me. And no cabin is wanted/needed.

4. I want to go fast. More along the lines of a racer than a cruiser. Don't mind spilling a drink or two if it means some fun action.

Thank you in advance, I've read so many different forums and everyone loves the boat they have. So it's hard to compare each boat against eachother when it's nothing but glowing reviews.

D

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post #2 of 34 Old 03-04-2017
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Re: Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser

Dylan Welcome to the forum. Where do you plan to sail this vessel? Murry reservoir? If mostly sailing flat water an MC, C, and E scow are all a ton of fun to sail. They have a number of racing fleets around the Great Lakes but I am not sure if they are common anywhere else.
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I'll be in SC on Lake Murray. Mostly flat water, but I've gone out in two foot 'swells' a few times on the ComPAC. Those class ratings, theyre not specific to any brand of boat, correct? -edit, I see MC is the brand. Do they handle well? And if capsized, can you flip it back over without much trouble

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Re: Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser

I've sent you a private message with phone numbers for the local Flying Scot and MCScow fleet captains. They should enthusiastically help you. Good luck.
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Re: Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser

I will preface this with... Flying Scot's are terrible, terrible boats and I wish they would die a brutal death. They are expensive, heavy, slow, and frankly a bit high on the 'make you bleed' scale. There is nothing about them that I like except the Class size can lead to some good OD racing.

If you want something kick around and fun then a Stileto 24 would be my first choice in this price range. If you want a monohull then on of the larger RS range, a Venture if you can find one used would fall in your price range... if you can stretch it a little more then a Viper 640 might be available in the $12k range.

Frankly there are just too many modern designs that are easier to sail, faster, and more fun than a family daysailor designed in the 1950's like the scott.

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Hudsonian, those numbers didn't come through. Will you please send them again?

Stumble, I'm interested in your opinion on the FS. So many fans out there but your post made me look a little deeper into it. The shape of my lake and the usual wind direction means that I am almost always pointing windward to go anywhere. The ComPAC really struggles at getting a tight angle upwind which means I do a lot of back and forth sailing without making any forward progress. It seems that the FS may have this same issue? Any experience? Are the ventures any better about that?

I checked out the Viper 640 and I am in love with it. But with $8 already pushing it, I'm afraid 12+ may have to wait for some school loans to be paid first. It is exactly what I want though, a fast moving, spacious boat that can be pushed to the limit and hold four people. What I want is a viper but half the price!

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Re: Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser

Why not just go with a bigger catamaran if you want to go fast? Most any 18-20 foot cat will have plenty of room for 4 adults, be trailerable and go like snot.
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Re: Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser

So my issues with the Flying Scott are a tad legandary locally... I amsolutly loath the things, and am convinced that the only reason they are still commercially available is because there are already so many of them out there. It's a self fulfilling cycle of mediocrity that lures people in, convinces them sailing sucks, and then ruins potential converts to the sport. So in no particular order...

1) the FS isn't self rescuing, so if you broach and fill the cockpit with water you will now need a tow to get you back in. Self draining cockpits are now so close to assumed on modern boats I wouldn't buy anything without one

2) the rigs are all wrong for the sails. Booms in the FS have to be treated as disposable because the boat requires so much vang that a broken boom is a once a regatta happening. It's so common top race teams carry a total least one if not two spares to a weekend regatta.

3) the daggerboard trunk penetrates into the cockpit, using up all of the available space and is is commonly known as the 'shin basher' for good reason

4) the stupid crank... hasn't been used on any boat besides the FS in 50 years for good reason

5) slow as all blazes. A modern design of abou the the same weight like the VX-One is rated about 100second/mile faster than the FS. the VX costs about the same when new btw.

6) expensive class controlled sails, and very tight OD requirements mean there are no worked out upgrades in the non-racing market.

7) it's seriously overpriced. Sure you can find a beat up used one for a couple of grand, but find any boat built e same year that wreck of a Scott was built and it will likely be in the same price range. Rigged ready to sail on a trailer a FS is upwards of $27k, or about 90% the price of a VX-One (The Viper 640's smaller, but much newer sibling).Sadly the VX justhasntbeen out long enough for used boatprices to hit your price range or I would suggest one over even the Viper.

I could go on. But I think you get my point. The FS was designed as a family day boat sixty years ago. Since them better designs, better materials, a deeper understanding of boatdesign has lead to fundamentally better boats. In much the same way that the average 1957 sedan is a world of terrible compared to a 2017 sedan. It's not that the FS was terrible when it came out, but by modern standards it is.

Other options...

Vanguard Nomad
Weta trimaran - but it's a 2 person boat max
Stiletto 24 - at the very top of your price range
Re Venture

There are more. If you step down to just 2 people it gets a lot easier btw everything from 420's to a 29er open up. Meaning a far more fun boat to sail for less money.

Greg
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That's a valid point, and I loved my Hobie cat back in high school. But, to me, there is something decidedly less grown up about them. May be the fact that there's no seat on it...
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Re: Recommendation for 16-20' Racer/Cruiser

Holder 20 Holder 20 Sailboat Photo Gallery, Holder

Santana 20 Santana 20 Sailboat Photo Gallery

Precision 18 Precision Boat Works P-18 Sailboat

... if you really want a 'racer/cruiser'.. the Santana is light enough to trailer but might need specific launch facilities (modified trailer or steep ramp)
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".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
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