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Old 17-04-2007, 23:49   #16
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I remember that a few Islanders had this problem too. After reading the article, it seemed to me that the owner was quite miticulous about his vessel and would have noticed a problem with rudder or shaft during a haulout. Like others have said here...this is not the frist Hunter that this has happened to. Yes, there were large seas and big wind but if you do blue water, either you find it or it finds you. When that happens, your boat better take the punishment. I had a Blackwatch 37 (Ted Hood 3/4 full keel) that I accidently broached in this kind of weather. Luckly I only lost a few items off deck while washing my spreaders. My point is, I make mistakes and a forgiving, strong vessel is what you need while being human. My heart goes out to anyone who looses their beloved boat. I was also saddened at the fact that items were stolen but not surprised since I live in Hawaii. I have little doubt it was the same people from the settlement he gave the fuel to.
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Old 18-04-2007, 03:04   #17
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Selecting a sailboat, like most everything, involves choosing (prioritizing) between various trade-offs and compromises.

Beneteau, Catalina Yachts, and Hunter Marine have captured the majority of market share for production sailboats, because they offer “perceived value” for the purchasing dollar.

Hunter (like the other higher volume manufacturers*) aims for the 85% of the market that is in the middle of the classic bell-shaped curve**. They recognize that there is a knowledgeable segment of the market that is capable of, and willing to, spend much more for a higher quality (perhaps smaller) boat - but that's not their target market.

* They are more akin to “manufacturers” than boatbuilders

** According to John Peterson, Hunter's Director of Sales and Marketing

Hunter manufactures “commodity” boats that (they believe) 85% of prospective customers want* to buy and sail. For the most part they don't design boats for knowledgeable cruisers, nor those who actually cross oceans. Inevitably, that results in design and manufacturing decisions more optimized for coastal cruising than for ocean passagemaking.

* Primarily size and/or accommodations (length & volume), and “glitzy” amenities

Being “price” boats, there are a lot of desirable qualities you won’t get (but didn’t pay for) with a typical Hunter, and the like.

Discussions, like this, seem to keep returning to the theme of “intended purposes”.
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Old 18-04-2007, 03:29   #18
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I am increasingly coming around to the notion that contrasting "coastal cruiser" and "bluewater cruiser" is a false dichotomy.

When we all know that good seamanship will inevitably mean getting searoom when foul weather catches us by surprise, isn't every coastal cruiser automatically a potential batten-the-hatches bluewater boat? If the rudder could fall off or the vessel is severely underballasted and likely to broach in moderate-to-heavy seas, what business does the skipper have ever leaving sheltered waters?

Anybody can get into trouble, but as another poster rightly points out, a good seaboat is a lot more forgiving of our mistakes than those "other boats" (no names) are.

And what are the consequences when these substandard boats and their skippers find themselves caught out? An increase in distress calls and rescues that give yachting a bad name and cause resentment among landlubbers who already think we're nuts anyway.

Just to emphasize, I am neither saying a) that good boats don't get into trouble, nor that b) mediocre boats don't make it through the tough stuff. Both clearly happen, but statistically speaking, with more "coastal cruisers" out there, even 50 or 100 miles offshore, we're going to see more vessels run into problems.
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Old 18-04-2007, 08:56   #19
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There's something to be said about "bluewater" boats though. I remember reading about the Japenese guy who sailed a 22' foot plywood boat around the world, having no experience before he started, so obviously there's a lot more going on than the make and model of the vessel.

That being said, there are certain characteristics that a vessel can have that will generally give you more slack if you mess up. Full keels, heavy displacement, small cockpit volume, good engine mounts, selectable fuel filters, etc.

Those things (and so many more) don't necassarily promise a safe trip, but with the example of a low volume (how much water could get in there and how fast can it be emptied) cockpit, there's going to be a world of difference if you get pooped.

Enough little things like that add up, in my mind, to a "bluewater" boat. Sure, they move a little slower, and the mainsail doesn't come out of the mast, but like someone said above, it's about tradeoffs.
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Old 18-04-2007, 09:46   #20
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Honestly I feel for the guy and losing his boat, but the reality is the skipper makes the boat a bluewater craft . . .

first "Barton said he didnít want to take the time needed to sail Barefoot in Paradise to Hawaii and arranged for the crew for the three- to four-week trip."

second "crew members first attempted to fashion an emergency rudder but found they didnít have the tools they would need to attach it to the hull."

Yes I am armchair quarterbacking, but I am guessing Slocum, Moitessier, etc would have found a way.

Cheers,
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Old 18-04-2007, 13:56   #21
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Attached is a report about a Hanse37.1 sinking of the coast of Ireland due to rudder stock failure.
The whole story points to poor workmanship, poor material and poor design. The skipper in this case is blameless ( other than buying the boat I suppose) but rather was a victim of poor quality and workmanship.

http://tinyurl.com/2tntq7
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Old 27-04-2007, 07:56   #22
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Symptomatic of a culture change...?

Bigger beamier boats, skeg rudders, fin keels so we can go faster, get there first, have more time to play..... Hmmm, I enjoy the tranquility of the slow passage and have a sense of satisfaction when my well built boat overcomes the adverse conditions instead of being "fast enought to avoid them".

Nero fiddled while Rome burned...
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