I''m thinking about buying a Colgate 26. Does anyone have any experience with this boat:
1)Quality of construction
2)How does it sail in 15-20 knot winds
3)Any disadvantages other than small cabin
I would be day sailing on Lake Michigan.
Thanks. Rob ~~~~~_/)~~~~
The Colgate 26 was developed by the Colgate Sailing Schools as their idea of the perfect boat to teach beginners to sail on. The boats are intended to be simple and tough. They are intended to be responsive so that beginners can get a sense of what works and what doesn''t and yet docile enough that they don''t scare beginners to death. They are a pretty ideal size for a beginning boat in that they are small enough that they can be manhandles and big enough to take a reasonable number of people. They have a fractional rig which is an easier rig to tack and trim.
I have seen them out sailing in about 12 to 15 knots of wind and they seem to sail quite well. I have not seen them sail as the winds approaching 20 knots but I suspect you would probably have to take a reef in the main or have a lot of weight on the rail.
I believe the Naval Academy is buying a fleet to replace their aging fleet of Knockabouts (Rainbows). Other choices to consider would be a J-22, or Sonar (23).