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Old 29-03-2010, 22:17   #1
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Keep the Dodger ?

So the 32ft flush/raised deck Dreadnought that I bought last year came with a stoutly built dodger in nice condition.
I don't have much off-shore experience and I fear that my lack of such experience is, in part, what's informing my desire to sell the dodger and do without. I sail in Southern California waters and don't like dodgers now. I hate having to stoop out from under it when I am comming out the companionway. I don't like how it interferes with my view and so far in spite of being out on some pretty wet days I don't worry much about the protection. Our intention is to make for warm waters when we go.

I would love to hear from folks with some multi-day passages/open ocean crossings behind them regarding their opinions of the value of a dodger.

Thanks!
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Old 29-03-2010, 22:24   #2
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I would sooner do without a motor then a dodger... .
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Old 29-03-2010, 22:46   #3
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We had a dodger that just covered the companionway on our Westsail.
being so narrow. it didn't affect forward vision enough to even mention. It did give a place to sit on watch, out of the elements, going to weather or when it was ugly out. It also allowed us to leave the companionway open during rainstorms and inclement weather at anchor. This was a must have as the boat got real stuffy instantly with the companionway closed. We made it really easy to fold down but never did in two years of cruising.

My current boat has a full width dodger and I really don't like it except when it rains. Even though the windows have just been replaced, can't see clearly through it. When it's up, find myself constantly having to look around it for traffic. It's too tall for me to see over unless I stand on the cockpit seats. It was designed flat across the top. In the rain at the marina, the material sags and water pools dripping dead center into the companionway. It is about two inches shy of coming back far enough to keep rain from coming into the companionway. Have to keep the lower hatch board in to keep the rain out. I dig it out when it rains and take it off as soon as the rain is over. Still, when I leave for Hawaii in a couple of months, the dodger will be up and doubt that it will come down till I reach the Islands.

If you are going anywhere with your boat, other than daysails, keep the dodger. You'll learn to love it out on the big ocean or anchored in inclement wx.
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Old 29-03-2010, 23:58   #4
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A dodger and a windvane are two deck comforts that I really can't deal with out. They both cost a few bucks but make an amazing difference. A cold day in the cockpit would otherwise be bone chilling freezing without a dodger. They're so nice as a place to nuzzle up under in crappy weather.
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Old 30-03-2010, 03:38   #5
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On your way to warm waters you will be glad you have it. Store it now and put it back on for the trip south. Sell it later.

My sail from So Cal to Cabo would truely have been miserable without one.
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Old 30-03-2010, 03:48   #6
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Keep the dodger!
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Old 30-03-2010, 04:14   #7
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sun

sun sun sun sun sun wind wind wind wind rain rain rain rain
My dodger is my best friend
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Old 30-03-2010, 04:50   #8
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The first time I did a long offshore passage was with a friend on his boat. No dodger. It was absolutely miserable during the three day gale we sailed through. My own boat had a dodger and full bimini. What a difference. We made several passages with even worse weather, and stayed warm and dry. When we reached the tropics, it provided shade and allowed us to keep the companionway hatch open when it rained.

Don't leave home without it!
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Old 30-03-2010, 09:02   #9
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Y'all are great! Thanks. Nothing like the voice of experience.
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Old 30-03-2010, 09:55   #10
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Dodgers help to extend the season too. On those bitterly cold So Cal days when the temps sink into the 50's tucking up under the dodger in the warm sun and no wind makes the day work better.
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Old 30-03-2010, 10:05   #11
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It rained thismorning.. kinda muggy out so we kept the hatch and boards open for a little air.. the dodger provided a nice shelter from the rain.. durring the summer we often pull all the panels from the dodger and it kinda resembles a small bimini over the hatch and a sunshade..
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Old 30-03-2010, 11:00   #12
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Does your sailing include women?

We have a nice, full width dodger on our boat. My wife is pretty happy while I bash upwind in 25 kts, so long as she is snug and dry tucked under the dodger. She leans back against the cabin trunk with a cushion and enjoys a beautiful day.

Without a dodger she would sail upwind with me in wind and chop exactly once, and then I'd probably sell the boat, because I don't want to cruise alone. Most women don't like face shots of cold brine.
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Old 30-03-2010, 11:09   #13
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Perhaps price up the cost of adding a new Dodger. If you later regret your decision to sell you may be horrified. or merely shocked at the cost of replacement...........
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Old 30-03-2010, 12:57   #14
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There's a reason they're called Dodgers and not Getintheway....ers
Keep it, try it, if you hate it you can always get rid of it.
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Old 30-03-2010, 15:18   #15
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You must not sail much when it's cold and blowing like stink Either that or you like wearing foul weather gear or bring wet and cold. Me I hate being cold. What I do like is sitting behind my dodger dry and out of the wind and spray all the while beating into a 25kt breeze. Usually drinking a beer and smoking a cigar. With a tiller I can sit all the way forward, right behind the dodger, and still reach the tiller.

If dodgers were outlawed I'd have to give up a lot of the sailing season...
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