As to the original question - War Baby was built as an aluminum
, and has been to the ends of the earth.
So was Alaska
Eagle, built as Flyer, and she's been to the ends of the earth, as well.
A lot of the earlier IOR boats were pretty darn good boats, and unlike a lot of newer boats will go upwind in a blow. The later ones, built to exploit the stability provisions of the rule
had a deserved reputation for getting squirrely powered up reaching or downwind. Sailed as cruising boats they should be fine. The later ones also had flexible, tunable rigs that are simply not robust enough for the average cruiser.
Relative to a lot of more modern boats, some of those old IOR boats are tanks
, think the S&S Swans, or Joli (beautiful
boat) for that matter. The question is not if the boat is capable
, but is it suitable
What do you want in a cruising boat? My wife likes ventilation, so big Dorades were on our list. Race
boat cockpits are built for work, not relaxing, and are usually not built to accept a spray dodger
boat companionways are frequently pretty vertical ladders with just a sprayhood, separate from the cockpit
. A lot of race boats have flush decks, I remember a nice Frers 46, built in aluminum
by PJ, did not have standing headroom
What I'm saying is look carefully at the layout and how you plan to use the boat. If she's suitable, go for it, but with eyes wide open.
Personally, I'd love to have an aluminum version of my boat, done right. The best sailboat builder
in the world, Huisman, works in aluminum.
Answer to #5 - most race boats are not insulated, but you can add that. Without insulation
they will be cold when it's cold, hot when it's hot, be prone to condensation
, and be LOUD!