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These boats make excellent cruisers. As owner of Wings, a 1979 IOR 43 flush decked racer, on which Judy and I have done over 55,000 miles, I'd say that sailing one around the world does not take "bigger balls". The boat is fast and safe. Most of all it is easy and fun to sail. It doesn't need big sails to make it go. Oh, if you want to push it a bit, you certainly can pile on more sail and I'd guess you can make it broach. I don't know much about that, we've never done an honest-to-god-broach. Rounded up a few times, but that doesn't count in my book.

As for modifications, you don't need to do that much, although we added tankage, windlass, and a few other amenities like nice lighting and a good stereo, the boat looks pretty much the same, inside and out, as it did when it raced Big Boat in the 80's. You'll spend some money getting it ready to go, but with the amount you'd save in the purchase, it'll still be economical. The rewards in sailing fun make it worth while.

The rig on our boat is three spreader, runners and check stays. The main is big but it has three reefs. The boat is not hard to handle, Judy, my 65 year old wife, can manage ours without problem. We have a tiller, no wheel, and only the smallest of autopilots. The boat tracks well and a Monitor windvane steers it most all of the time anyways, even on 200 mile days. We don't have roller furling, lazy jacks, or much, if any, of all the complications which most people think make a boat easier. We just think they get in the way more than they help.

If you like sailing, get a boat which will do it, If not, stay home.
 

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I remember Police Car. If you are going to try and cruise her short handed then you sir have bigger balls than me and during my sailing heyday I was considered quite insane.


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I wonder how the OP got on with this dream?
 

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I remember Police Car. If you are going to try and cruise her short handed then you sir have bigger balls than me
Mr Bleemus, Other than a big rig, Police Car is a very mild (and beautifully drawn) Ed Bubois IOR two tonner. My boat is very similar, and Judy and I have put over 55,000 miles on it, short handed. No problem sailing this boat short handed. You will find lines led to the cockpit, big winches, moderate loads and simple controls. It is designed to be efficiently sailed. You just reef the main down and use a small jib. You will find that it goes fast and can sail virtually any direction in any conditions. You could be confident it would sail off a lee shore in a full gale. You will find no (NONE, ZERO) bad habits and nothing scary about it despite what nonsense is repeated by people who have never sailed one of these boats. All right, I'll concede that if you are caught out in a midnight squall with a full main and a big jib things will get exciting very fast, so, until your own skills match the boat's capability, try to avoid that situation. Otherwise relax, it will; be easy.

The boat has been totally restored, it is perfect condition (meeting very strict standards required to sail 2015 Sydney Hobart). You just put in some windows, a bit of interior, tankage, windlass, and a wind vane, you'll be good to go. Don't bother with that row of yellow jerry jugs you use on your standard cruiser, you won't need them.

Fred Roswold
 

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Fred, it looks like you've had a wonderful time cruising Wings. Cruising a boat that actually sails is important if you enjoy sailing.

It seems many of today's cruising boats have stubby rigs, overlapping sail plans that have to be rolled reefed when the wind comes up, and lots of freeboard and beam making them sticky in the light stuff and not very weatherly.

Your old two tonner will sail night and day ahead of many of today's offerings. Beautiful boat!
 

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Mr Bleemus, Other than a big rig, Police Car is a very mild (and beautifully drawn) Ed Bubois IOR two tonner. My boat is very similar, and Judy and I have put over 55,000 miles on it, short handed. No problem sailing this boat short handed. You will find lines led to the cockpit, big winches, moderate loads and simple controls. It is designed to be efficiently sailed. You just reef the main down and use a small jib. You will find that it goes fast and can sail

Fred Roswold
Fred. Duly noted and I am glad you are enjoying your boat. I raced one tonners, two tonners and numerous other IOR boats. Fun times.

I spent over 50k miles on a Custom Baltic 76 that was built on a IOR hull. Loved the boat, hated the hull. The contortions designers went through to try and beat the IOR rule resulted in hulls with flat fore bodies that pound mercilessly up wind. How do I know? I sailed that boat UPWIND TWICE from Australia to Tahiti. The pounding and shock were incredible. The queen sized bunk forward actually broke free and we are talking Baltic build quality.

I respect your choice but I will never suggest to anyone that an IOR boat is a great choice for a cruiser especially someone with limited experience. There is a reason IOR died as it was shown to not produce seakindly shapes.

That being said all boats matter.

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I believe the IOR went through a good bit of evolution over the years, so it's hard to condemn every IOR boat based on a few (well, maybe several) excessively contorted hulls. I own a fairly late-model IOR boat, a Beneteau First 375 from the mid '80's, and it sails great and doesn't pound.
 

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I remember a discussion of what Peterson's thoughts were when he designed Ganbare - the quintessential IOR shape.

He said he came up with the U-shaped forefoot while sailing and pounding his way to Tahiti on Improbable which had more V'd sections forward. He figured when that boat heeled the "side" of the V presented a flat to the water, hence it pounded. The more rounded section always presented a radiused surface to the water.

Sounded good to me. :laugh
 

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I will respectfully let you decide what you feel is acceptable but my experience of beating upwind for thousands of miles against trade winds and big seas will never convince me otherwise. If you own a boat designed to "cheat" the IOR rule it is not a hull I want to sail for pleasure. I imagine some didn't had the extreme flat forefoot and weird rad side bumps to cheat the rule on wetted surface and perhaps they sail fine but I never sailed those. Of all the IOR boats I ever sailed I never considered one as being a potential cruiser conversion.


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If you like sailing, get a boat which will do it, If not, stay home.
That's just about the most condescending and arrogant thing I think I've ever seen on this site.
I'm guessing you must consider yourself God's gift to sailing, and all of us who actually enjoy a bit of comfort and safety aboard less radical, old fashioned boats, as less competent then you. How could we enjoy sailing our homes around without the extra 6 degrees of pointing ability and a knot and quarter knot of speed you think only you can attain?
I circumnavigated before roller furling, fancy electronics that did hours of navigation in mere seconds, and wonderful things like water makers and economical refrigeration. I wouldn't go back for anything!
I never want to risk my life on the foredeck again, doing a sail change in 55 knots of wind, when I can just pull a string and zip it into a manageable size from safety of my cockpit and continue sailing on in comfort. Tucking a third reef in my main in 55 knots of wind is certainly doable, but only a fool would choose to do it from the mast, exposed to the elements, when it CAN be done from the safety of the cockpit. And sailing without lazyjacks when they are as cheap and efficient as they are today is well, I'm sure you can imagine my thoughts on that.
You go ahead and do it your way, but shame on you for even thinking, let alone writing it down for others to read, "If you like sailing, get a boat which [I think] will do it, If not, stay home."
 

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Being a bit hard there aren't you Capta? A two tonner is a forty footer, not that big, sails are manageable for a couple and many old IOR boats make very good cruisers. If you want more cruise and less race, that's OK, but others may want more race and less cruise and are willing to do the work for the extra point and speed.

It's all good, we can all have different ideas about what is ideal.
 

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ESSAY IN DEFENSE OF IOR BOATS AS CRUISERS

That's just about the most condescending and arrogant thing I think I've ever seen on this site
I guess I knew that comment would be a stick in the eye of some people. OK, I'm sorry. People can do their sailing any way they want, I get it, and even if they disagree with my approach to sailing they can still be good people. I'll try to be less judgmental.

But, (you knew there would be a "but" didn't you?), when I see so many boats, as I invariably do, motoring around everywhere with the mains up and flagging in the wind, with a long row of yellow jerry cans on the deck, 250lbs of dingy cantilevered off the stern, hobby horsing dead to windward in 15 knots of wind, with the captain calling it "motor sailing", I just shake my head. I don't know if they are motoring because they don't like sailing or they just have boats that can't sail. In the end, I guess, I think they just don't like sailing. I wonder why these people even have sailboats.

The great feeling of having a boat under you which comes alive in a little breeze, and which can sail upwind to a destination, (or off a lee shore in a blow) which has some feel to the helm, and where you can get the wind in your face (and spray even, if you want)... that's the joy of sailing. If someone does not appreciate that, or is perfectly happy doing without it...well, I guess we won't have much in common.

But when they say that the boat I've chosen, and cruised successfully for many years, would not be a good cruising boat, or that I have chosen speed over comfort, or that it's unsafe and try to discourage someone else from cruising in a boat like that, that's when I get angry. Because they are wrong.

Let's take some of these claims one by one:

1. IOR boats pound upwind. True, but so do almost all boats. The pounding is not due to the "flat forward sections" which, on IOR boats, are frankly quite small areas just forward of the keel, but due to the fact that a boat heeled over lands on the sides of its bow sections, which are flat on almost all boats. Any boat which launches off a wave and comes down on the side of the bow is going to pound. I can tell you, I've sailed upwind on a 65ft carbon IRC race boat, and it pounded just as bad, probably worse, than the 65 Baltic mentioned previously. The way to avoid pounding is to go slower, crack off, or have a boat with a hull shape so deep in the forefoot that it never leaves the water. That boat I've never seen. A full keeled, heavy, cruising boat, maybe, but going upwind in a breeze when that full keeled cruising boat comes down off a big wave and drives the bowspirit deep into the next wave, and then comes up with a ton of water on deck, it will likely stop dead in its tracks. Is that more comfortable? They don't pound upwind going from Australia to Tahiti because they can't go that way.

2. Does pointing and boat speed matter? If I can sail at 6kts to windward at a TWA of 40, with a VMG of 4.88, the boat which goes 1.5 knots slower and 6 degrees more off the wind and has a VMG of 2.75, will get there much later. The difference is extreme. If we are sailing to a destination 45 miles away upwind, I will get there in the daytime, and, well, I can understand why the other boat's crew won't find it much fun. Add a bit of chop to that and they will like it even less. So they'll motor.

3. IOR rule died because it did not produce seakindly shapes? Not true. IOR died because the owners were tired of each year's new designs making the previous year's boats obsolete. Every year the newest IOR boats would be slightly faster without getting faster ratings. It was a poor rule. If you wanted to keep racing you had to buy a new boat. Plus, the boats were slow compared to other race boats of similar lengths. The rule produced hulls which were too deep and the sterns that were too narrow for the boats to plane. Newer boats would speed away off the wind. The owners fled and the fleets dwindled. Does this mean the boats are uncomfortable or unseakindly? No, the attributes which made them slower than the flat hulled boats which followed make them more moderate in a seaway. Anyhow, the race boat owners didn't care about seakindliness, just going fast and winning. And by the way, the newest boats are fantastic, I just can't afford one.

4. Does an IOR boat make a good cruising boat? Yes, in my opinion, it does. They sail well and give you that joy you get when you know, and can feel, that the boat is a thoroughbred. They don't need much sail area to sail fast and the sails are easy to handle. The sail controls are powerful and efficient, the winches big and well located. They can sail anywhere, any direction, in any conditions. And it's not just about sailing. The high volume hulls also provide a lot of area to live in and store all the junk we all seem to think we need now days. If you buy one you may spend a lot of money adding cruising amenities and necessary equipment (like windlasses, tankage, refrigeration, and autopilots) but in the end you will have a boat which is fast, safe and fun.

And please don't tell me that they are bad boats or that you need "big balls" to sail one. That's ill informed.

Fredrick Roswold, SV Wings, La Cruz Huancaxtle
 

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Sorry, one more thing:

All those stories and photos of IOR boats, wildly rocking, rolling, and broaching down the Solent or SF City Front are just evidence that you can push any boat too far. And IOR boats with their deep hulls and narrow sterns are definitely hull-speed limited. Put up more sail area than the boat needs to hit its hull speed and they will broach (as modern boats do as well, the videos are all over YouTube). Racers will do that, always have. In a race maybe many will broach and be slow while recovering, and lose ground, but a few will make it without broaching and they will win. Not recommended while cruising.

But you don't have to broach. In 30 years, in over 450 races (many of which we have won), over 55,000 miles cruising, we have never had a honest-to-god, downwind, broach. Plenty of round-ups for sure, but broaches, none.

With two reefs and a 85% jib we will sail downwind in 30+ knots of wind at 8-9 knots under full control, with the windvane steering. We did it from Bora Bora to Samoa, we did it rounding Cabo de Vela in the Caribbean in what is generally considered the worst wind and wave conditions in the Caribbean, and we did it crossing the Southern Indian Ocean. Not a drop of water on deck in any of those passages. Upwind we get wet, but not on those downwind passages and not a single broach.The logs, photos and stories are all on the web. Google wingssail.
 

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Well put. We will agree to disagree. You can have your exaggerated beam and pinched stern and all that it promises. I will gladly take a boat designed for comfort AND performance and VMG your boat till the cows come home and be a lot more comfortable doing it.

As for the pounding issue I can remember many boats that never pounded. Most notably beating upwind across the Gulf Stream in what can only be described as a wave pattern that reminded me of a washing machine. The seas were 20-25 feet and the boat was a Hinckley 57. Didn't even spill my tea. Try that on an IOR boat. LOL!
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ESSAY IN DEFENSE OF IOR BOATS AS CRUISERS
OK, I'm sorry. People can do their sailing any way they want, I get it, and even if they disagree with my approach to sailing they can still be good people.
Fredrick Roswold, SV Wings, La Cruz Huancaxtle
Perhaps I'm a bit overly sensitive on this subject. Apology accepted. We certainly have a very comfortable sail boat with most of the mod cons aboard, but after over 50 years on the water, I really do appreciate them. However, the year before last we did about 2500 miles through the Antilles (no ocean crossings at all) and used the engine less than 20 hours.
If this sounds like bragging, perhaps it is for we are very proud of the fact that we sail where most power (the lees) as well as off the anchor ( when we don't get boxed in) and back on at the end of the day, almost every day.
As for speed and pointing ability, I haven't a clue how she sails in comparison to other boats, as we are almost always sailing alone. We haven't quite figured out why, but that's the way it is. If we're going north, all the other boats are going south, and vice versa??? Maybe they leave earlier, for if it's less than a 50 mile trip, we rarely start before 10AM, (Hey, can I please get another cup of Joe, dear?).
Like you, we see many powering along almost every single day, in lovely sailing weather, but hey, if that's how they please to get from point A to point B, at least I'm not paying for their fuel and they'd damn well better not expect me to give way to them.
Some even cruise on motor powered vessels, which is also fine with me. To be quite honest, if I ever became so incapacitated that I couldn't operate a sailboat, I'd rather keep voyaging on a power boat, than sit in a rocking chair in some old folks home.
Some buy Hunters and some Hylases or Little Harbors. Others prefer wood or steel over fiberglass. Fast or slow, good to weather or not, if they are all out here somewhere on whatever they chose, they are miles ahead of those who can't shake free of the corporate world and the constant struggle for the almighty dollar.
 
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