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Old 22-12-2004, 23:32   #1
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CSY Shoal Keel Offshore Seaworthiness

We are seriously considering buying a CSY 37 B Plan with a shoal draft for offshore. We understand these were designed for the Carribbean, however, we want to circumnavigate. Will this shoal draft cause us problems in heavy weather and in upwind?
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Old 23-12-2004, 03:32   #2
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It seems to be a poor choice...

...for at least two reasons.

Hello, Bev & Bill. It is easy to see how you are attracted to a CSY 37 for long-distance cruising. It has a seemingly suitable, double headsail rig, a beefy fiberglass monocoque structure, and a certain 'look to it that suggests bluewater sailing. But I think it suffers from at least two siginificant liabilities:

First is the shoal draft you mention. If you were to be planning many years of winter sailing in the Bahamas, then PERHAPS it might make sense to surrender upwind performance for less draft. But with so many offshore miles ahead of you, you are going to find sailing performance - to include efficiently working the boat upwind at times - to be an important asset. (I speak from experience, as this is one of our 13M/42' ketch's weaknesses and I surely do wish it weren't).

Second is the CSY's weight (note e.g. her SA/D ratio). Far more than heavy or storm-force winds, a Circle is going to require you to be sailing in lighter winds. Moreover, you'll need the boat to be loaded down substantially (fluids, food, perhaps spare sails, systems spares and so on) given that some of the longer runs will find you in pretty remote areas. Add to this the tendency of today's cruiser to further encumber the boat with systems (something I think is easily overdone, bringing even more weight aboard while depriving the cruising kitty...) and you'll find it challenging to keep up the boat's speed on many days without resorting to the engine...which is usually NOT a great choice when out cruising long-term in more remote waters. As you know, CSY's - and especially CSY 44's - are chosen by a number of people for long-distance cruising, so it isn't that one can't make such a choice. But I think you'd often regret having such a heavy - and such an underpowered - boat.

Also, the 'common wisdom' of the 90's that a cutter rig is the preferred rig of choice for long-distance sailing is now experiencing some fresh reflection, and its characteristics are viewed today with less enthusiasm. E.g. any kind of staysail boom on the foredeck is a real safety issue, especially offshore; downwind and sometimes upwind sailing is not well accommodated by such a rig; the staysail is usually underweight for the heavy air work for which it's intended, while it's too heavy for light air work when you want to fly all the sail you can; and, the 'cutter' or 'staysail' rig we see in North America requires a fair amount more clutter on the boat (usually, opposing intermediate or running backstays, separate tracks/cars/blocks for the staysail sheet) than e.g. the Solent stay often seen on European boats). An inner stay is definitely a design feature you will want, and none of my comments discounts cutter rigs altogether; my point is just that it isn't the holy grail it once seemed.

For a discussion on the basic design choices and their tradeoffs, specifically directed at offshore boats, I'd recommend you stop in at John Neal's website and read his treatise on this topic: www.mahina.com/cruise.html John's discussion is a bit dated in places, altho' I notice the subsequent list of candidate offshore boats and his annotated comments was supposedly just updated. John has no particular axe to grind, is a very seasoned offshore sailor, and strikes me as having a quite open mind about this topic; I think you'll find his comments instructive. And because her writiing seems to resonate equally well with men and women, you both might also want to get a copy of Beth Leonard's _Voyager's Handbook_. I think you will find her chapters on boat selection, outfitting and their financial consequences to be very thoughtful and relevant to your shopping.

Good luck on the shopping...and on the commencement of your Circle.

Jack
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Old 26-12-2004, 18:59   #3
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CSY or not CSY?

Good comments from Mr. Euro Cruiser on the pros and cons of long distance cruising on a shallow draft CSY 37.

I sail and own a "deep draft" CSY 33 cutter rigged sloop and have some comments:

The cutter rig, with the 2 Pro-Furl rollers up front is great for us / my use.
Would not trade for any other configuration.

Every boat and every owner, sailing in different areas have a different opion however.

The CSY boats are not "performance" yachts and won't win many races...Cause they are "overbuilt", heavy, beamy and sturdy with a short waterline. (Hullspeed decrease)

Uh, how do I say this gently?
Some of us don't give a sh!t about light air performance as long as we can put the anchor down in the evening and enjoy a cocktail..Today and for the next 30 years without keels, rudders and masts falling off 'cause the designers / builders tried to save money and weight.

Go slow in comfort and style I'd say...

Here is some more info on them CSY yachts.

http://www.marill.com/csy/
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Old 27-12-2004, 04:38   #4
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This is a useful 'compare & contrast' for Bev & Bill

Presuming that Bev & Bill are still with us and still sorting out which boat to choose, I think there's some useful food for thought for them when comparing CSY Man's comments with my own.

I'd encourage B&B to visit the Marill's website. Ed & Daisy are very thoughtful folks, and there is indeed a lot of CSY info on their polished website. Some of the visual info is especially instructive. E.g. note the heavy displacement of water when a CSY hull form moves through the water. Also note the way in which these larger CSY's are loaded down. Note SOGGY PAWS and SIESTA's sterns, and consider both the windage and the weight that those boats are being asked to accommodate. (It was also fun to see JOLLY MON', formerly owned by friends of ours, George & Helen).

SIESTA was daysailed in SF Bay for some years by Ed & Daisy and then did a lengthy, port-to-port circle of Central America. Ed mentioned, in an SSCA presentation I enjoyed this year, that their departure from SF Bay (note pic on website) was a rare occasion when SIESTA was sailing near hull speed. Dave, who MC'd an SSCA panel I was on this year, and Stacy have sailed SOGGY PAWS in the Caribbean, where shorter hops and steady winds are also the norm. Both Dave and Ed seem very pleased with their CSY 44's, but I don't think their satisfaction equates directly to Bev & Bill's plans, especially on a smaller boat of similar hull form.

'Cruising' is a term we overuse and abuse, and in fact refers to many different types of sailing. As CSY Man's points out: "Some of us don't give a sh!t about light air performance as long as we can put the anchor down in the evening and enjoy a cocktail." While there is some of that sailing in a Circle, most of the miles sailed don't offer an evening anchorage, and in fact there are not only a series of 2500-3500 NM runs but even many shorter ones, each of them exceeding any of the runs sailed by SIESTA, SOGGY PAWS and JOLLY MON'. And therein is the challenge for B&B: picking the right boat for their intended purpose vs. choosing one that has a generic cruising pedigree but may be less suitable for their needs.

Motoring across variable wind areas like the ITCZ isn't an option; small yachts don't carry that much fuel. Light winds are an unavoidable part of ocean sailing; is a 4 week passage desirable when the same length boat can make it in 3? Plowing seawater when anywhere near hull speed just isn't an asset when sailing long distances. Does weight equal strength? Yacht design is far more subtle and complex than that. Is a boat intended for the charter trade equally suitable for long-term liveaboard cruising? In some respects, yes but in others, no. Can boats with longer waterlines and better sailing characteristics also incorporate adequate cruising systems (electrical, self-steering, anchor handling, etc.)? Of course.

Are CSY's bad boats? Of course not. Are they suitable for cruising? For some kinds of cruising, sure. Is a CSY 37 an optimum choice for Bev & Bill's intended Circle? I don't think so.

Jack
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Old 27-12-2004, 09:28   #5
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While there is some of that sailing in a Circle, most of the miles sailed don't offer an evening anchorage, and in fact there are not only a series of 2500-3500 NM runs but even many shorter ones,
Agreed.

That is also why I do not advocate the CSY boats as the only or the best choice for everybody, for my use however, doing island hopping in the Bahamas, the CSY 33 is nearly perfect.

Every boat is a compromise and every skipper has his own preferences, fortunately there are hundreds or thousands of different types and models to choose from.

If money was not object, the choices would be easier: The Dashews 78' Beowulf would be close to the ideal passage maker, fast, roomy, etc, etc.

But since money is a factor, I settled on the CSY 33 and glad I did.

Made the mistake first time around of buying an older and bigger boat (Bill Trip Jr. Bermuda 44 Yawl)..She sailed really well, but the upkeep and cost made me boat poor in a hurry.

So, uh as for B&B getting a CSY 37 for long distance cruising, well, it may work out good, or there may be better choices out there.

I would also consider a deep draft CSY 44 in fairly good shape for about $80 t0 $85K, then put $15 ti $20K into upgrades and such.

That should get ya a good boat for about $100K.

I have seen the 44s range from $65. to $!65K depending on shape and equipment.

Good luck.
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Old 27-12-2004, 11:25   #6
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Jack's First Reply

Jack,

For those of us still in the throws of deciding what boat is the right choice, could you expand your first post in this thread a little bit to include vessels you think might be likely candidates for Bev and Bill?

Choosing a CSY, as they did, mirrors a lot of what we are looking for in a boat, but at the same time, everything you say in your first post regarding sailing in light winds resonates with me.

Ideally, if money were no object, I'd probably get a Shannon with Pilothouse, since I want to sail in cold climates and protect us from harmful UVs to some extent. One like this:

http://www.yachtworld.com/core/listi...89&slim=quick&

Or... possibly the same type of vessel in steel. (to me, the impact damage resistance and lightning strike protection is worth the extra work in keeping a steel hull in shape)

Now, given that the majority of us cruisers have less than $100K to spend, how do we get the things that are important at a cost we can afford?

Important items to most people looking seem to be:


1) Sufficient interior space to be comfortable in your new home (I like double or queen berths aft, and would love to be able to store enough supplies to stay in remote locations for 4-6 months)

2) Sailing performance (good performance in light winds)

3) Robust design (can handle occasional light collisions, groundings, and getting pounded by a storm)

How do we, as people making decisions on a limited budget, get all 3 above characteristics for less than $100K, ready to cruise? Any opinions? Any specific vessels?

Thanks!
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Old 27-12-2004, 15:41   #7
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Choosing a Mothership is hard...

...altho' I'm convinced it's even harder to pick the right dinghy that satisifies & provides good value for long-term cruising...but that's for a different thread. <g>

Ah, so there we have that nice Shannon at $400K, and we want something kinda like that but under $100K. Boy, I wish I had the answer to that...!

Sean, if you like steel for the reasons you outlined (and which would also be met by an aluminum boat), then that's where you should start. To get a seaworthy, relatively fast, seakindly metal boat, the steps I would suggest are:

1. Give up all the second priority issues (like queen berths aft) for a bit, and concentrate on First Order priorities: namely, a metal boat (preferably, aluminum) from a skilled designer (Van de Stadt leaps to mind; Ted Brewer does as well) that's simple and available on the market. If you're not familiar with the design(s) that attract you, do a bit of research.
2. When you've narrowed it down to a few choices, spend some time looking at the boats. This is when you can look at where the Queen Berth goes, or e.g. with a Roberts 45, if there already is one. Simple is better because you can 'customize' it as you wish, without inheriting stuff you don't need/want.

You will find pockets of metal boat activity just like you do for wood boats. You'll may have to dedicate a vacation spell in one of those areas, working with a broker, to see what's available and to develop some reactions of your own to what you see. Metal boats are often custom finished (yard or owner), and so talking about a specific design can be a bit misleading. You will probably also find you are signing up for some interior rework unless you just happen to find the ideal boat.

As one example, I walked around just one of the four boatyards in Trinidad in 2001, and there was a large collection of metal boats; all kinds of every vintage and size. It was a good reminder that, given the large number of cruisers out there these days, there are a good number of metal boats in the mix. I saw them with 1, 2 & 3 keels, and with 1, 2 and 3 rudders. All lengths, all drafts, all rigs. It's pretty tough to recommend a single design or two...and anyway, it's what YOU think that's important.

Jack
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Old 27-12-2004, 17:08   #8
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Thank you.

Thank you for the good advice, Jack. I appreciate your taking the time to do it. I think I had, to some extent, realized a lot of what you are saying, but really wanted to confirm it on the forum. We will continue to look. Thanks!
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Old 29-12-2004, 08:09   #9
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CSY

We are definitely still here and keen to read the opinions. Your replies are all very helpful and appreciated. Thank you!
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Old 29-12-2004, 09:13   #10
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It's good to hear this discussion is helpful...

...because one's head can get soggy with input when shopping for *the* boat, and one finds such variability in the choices and as many criteria as boats.

I happend to be reading a cruise report yesterday that reminded me of this thread. It was written by a couple who sailed to Mexico from Seattle and then returned. They chose a Valiant 32 for their cruising, a boat with sweet lines, a functional interior and drawn by a designer (Robert Perry) who is respected for designing able sailing boats. I think this skipper's comments are very typical of the feedback I hear out on the cruising trail:

"A large part of the enjoyment of sailing and cruising for me is sailing well and sailing fast. To help in this regard we will be making a few significant changes to help the performance, particularly in light air. My feeling is light air is priority. Much of time sailing is done in less than 10 knots and if we can avoid using the diesel life is that much better."

The entire site can be found at www.geocities.com/svearendil/index.html

Jack
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Old 30-12-2004, 11:55   #11
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Wow, Bev and Bill - between Eoro Cruiser, CSY Man, ssulivan and the others, you've certainly gotten a lot of opinions - and a lot of good facts as well.
I admit right up front that I am prejudiced, and I also admit tht we'e not cruised our CSY 44 "Walkover" cutter, La Nostra, anywhere but the Caribean, so our first hand experience is not as wide as EC's - at least not with this boat. WE have, however, spent a good deal of time between the Chesapeake Bay (primarily a light air area all summer, with LOTS of 'skinny" water in which to polish your keel) and Maine on a variety of boats - sme of which we've owned, some of which we chartered for a week or two, so we're not total novices, either. (Been sailing since age 9 - now 65!)
Ours is not the fastest boat on the pond, but she is by no means a slug, either. She'll foot along with some pretty good company in winds 10 kt and above, and, being a deep draft version, she'll do it on most points of sail. We've learned how to manage the sails to get optimal performance as well. Sometimes we fly the staysail, and sometimes we don't - depends on conditions.
In light air - which we have experienced, with sails properly trimmed we move along fairly well. Of course, light displacement boats with lots of sail area blow past us, but among the heavier cruising boats we hold our own. Before we take off on our world cruise, however, we are definitely going to add one of the new, huge, light weight cruising headsails to our inventory. The "gennaker" type - easy to handle, yet quite efficient - make the most sense.
On the other hand, when things blow up a bit and the going gets bumpy, that's when we start to love this boat. Her hull form gives her a nice easy motion with none of the slamming and pounding asociated with many of the lighter craft. The semi-clipper bow curls away many waves which would wind up on the foredeck of other boats, and those that do find their way on board are almost always stopped by the shape of the deck structure long before they get to the cockpit. With double or triple reefed main and staysail we are quite comfortable on conditions up to 30-35 kt, and the hull shape keeps things fairly comfortable. The deep keel also adds sability and helps keep her tracking properly in following seas.
(running the boat in crewed charter service as we do, we are often more-or-less forced to venture out in conditions which are keping others in port so we can be where we need to be when we need to be there to pick up our guests or the get them back to their airports on time)
As to accomodations - we thing the walkover layout is nearly perfect. Large cabin forward with ampe storage space. Large main head with SEPARATE SHOWER STALL. (We love this - especiallywith guests on board.) Large, comfortable, WELL VENTILLATED main salon, with plenty of space for 6 people, very workable galley (no, its not U shaped - and this is a liability in a seaway - but we've learned how to work it in most conditions, and at anchor it is a real delight to be able to have two people working there without tripping over each other ... and even circumnavigators spend about 90% of their time in port). There is more fridge and freezer space aboard than we have at home! Oh, yes - we love the totally separate aft cabin, with head and shower. This lets guests have their own private area, and when its just the two of us it affords the opportunity to get completely out of each other's face once in a while. It also is a wonderful living area - large, bright and airey.
That huge center cockpit is also a big plus. When we were doing our search I was totally against center cockpits, and wanted only a smallish aft cockpit for offshore work. I was leaning towards Valiants and their kind. HOWEVER! Now that we own one, I wouldn't trade it! We can entertain 6 or 8 in true comfort. Two can actually dine and dance under the stars. It is our outdoor patio, and we spend most of our time in it. Plenty of room to stretch out for a nap, yet lots of handholds and high seatbacks to keep things snug when the going gets tough. And, it is up away from the waves, so it is very dry. The question often comes up, what happens when a wave comes aboard and fills that big thing full of heavy seawater? so far we don't know for sure, but I'm inclined to say that not vey much would happen. The hull is heavy and strong with lots of lead down below for stability, so I think we'd stay upright OK. The hatches to the engine room are well gasketed and locked, sso they don't leak, as are the lazarette covers. There are 4 huge drains in the floor with 2" hoses to through hulls, so it would empty pretty quickly. It remains a small concern, but only that.
For power the boat has bee upgraded to a Perkins 4-236 making 85 hp which turns a 22' 3 bladed prop, so we have plenty of motor power when needed.
WE have 7 large, heavy-duty opening hatches to let in the light and breezes, plus 19 - yes, 19, count 'em - opening ports! Most are the original beautuful cast bronze items, nbut we're taken out the el cheapo plastic ports in the aft cabin and replaced them with cast stainless items - including the three across the transom. Even in the tropics on a still day the area below decks remains comfortable, and we do not have (or want) A/C. (Does make for quite a fire drill when they're all open and it starts to rain!)
We still have the club boom on the staysail, which makes it self tending when tacking and easy to handle, but we are giving serious consideration to removing it (for safety rasons) and adding a roller furler on the staysail. The decks are plenty large enough to handle the needed gear without getting cluttered.
True - some of the newer designed boats are getting away from the cutter rig, but we like it, especially when there are just the two of us on board. It makes the sails all a bit smaller (easier to handle), and afords so many options on sail plan: All three up and pulling, staysail and single or double reefed main when things start to blow, triple reefed main and partially rolled or reefed staysail (when properly built) in heavy conditions. Add a light air headsail, a mainsail handling setup (we like the Dutchman system) and a proper storm trysail on it's own track and you have it all in easy to handle segments.
As to glass vs. metal - all have their tradeoffs. Steel is strong, but it rusts, period! If you want brute strength, and you really like to scrape, sand and paint things on a regular basis while hangin by your toes upside down in an airless bilge, then steel is for you. (Of course, you can always get a second job and pay someone to do this for you.) Aluminum is light and strong, but we've seen a lot of pretty well bent-up aluminum boats. Hull panels tend to cave in a bit between the stringers and decks bend when pounded by big waves. They get pretty ugly, too. The hulls oxidize and get all gray and dull. True, this protects them, and they don't really need paint, but the look does nothing for me. I don't care what they say, to me being able to look out over an anchorage and feel I have one of the best looking boats there IS important! "Glass" is a very good material, provided it isused properly. No rot, no rust, holds a finish very well, worms and bugs don't eat it - with minimal care it lasts seemingly for ever. WHEN PROPERLY DESIGNED AND LAID UP! That said, lots of glass boats are too ligtly constructed and flex and crack. Others have poorly laminated hulls or decks. Still others have inner liners which make it easy for the builder to put in the furniture, etc. but make it nearly impossible to access some areas for maintenance. The CSY s seem to have good layups, have stringers and bulkheads which are strong and properly tabbed to the hull. and afford reasonable access to most areas. There are vulnerable areas under the sole where wooden joists provide support. These can rot or crack under certain conditions, but ours are holding up fine after 27 years (so far as I know). The hulls are VERY thick, and are solid glass. This is relatively heavy compared to cored hulls, but I'll carry a bit of extra weight and not worry about hull delamination or core rot any day. Same with the decks - solid, no cores. This means you can ad and subtract hardware and not worry about water getting into the balsa betwen the deck layers - there isn't any! As for being rugged, our boat broke loose from her mooring in St. Maarten in '96 during a hurricane. She hit and sank two other boats (one of which was a CSY 37), took out a wooden dock and badly damaged the concrete pier against which she finally stopped. Had to replace the bow pulpit and two stanchions, replace the cap rail along the port bow and make some cosmetic repairs to the hull in that area as well. She also needed to hae her paint re-done to deal with all the scrapes and abrasions. To me, that's a pretty strong boat. (We also heard on an instance in theChesapeake where a 20 foot power boat towing a skiier slammed into a boat like ours broadside at full speed. Driver and pasenger severely injured. Power boat completely destroyed. CSY needed to repaint the area! That, sir, is strong ... and that's the side of the hull above the waterline - they are even stronger below!
So - after all of that - is a 44 or 37 (very similar to a 44 walkover without the aft cabin) the right boat for you? I don't know. Depends on what trade-offs you are willing to make (there are ALWAYS tradeoffs!). Fast? Important - and we think we're fast enough for our use. Comfortable? Absolutely - at sea AND in port - and we really value that. Stowage space? We still are findings more each year - and we never use it all. 400 gal water tankage. 100 gal fuel. An engine which is very easy to get to, with room all around it in which to work - with PLENTY OF FRESH AIR WHILE DOING SO! Heavy, but very strong. Not the most nimble boat in every fleet, but will take you safely through conditions where those faster boats will fail. WE also love the more traditional look - especially when we're sitting among a bunch of look-alike chlorox bottles.
By the way - that 37 B-plan is a great boat - but to me that shoal keel would be a deal-breaker. I wouldn't own one knowing a deep draft version is available in the same boat - but that's just me - and is because I don't like to sail sideways, I like to go to weather and I don't like to roll a lot when at anchor.
If you have any questions feel free to ask either in this forum or via e-mail.
Also, check out http://www.thetwocaptains.com. This site is by two former charter boat captains - one with a 44 CSY walkover the other with a 44 CSY walkthrough design - who married, sold one boat, upgraded the other, and are out cruising full time.
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Old 30-12-2004, 11:57   #12
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Wow, Bev and Bill - between Euro Cruiser, CSY Man, ssulivan and the others, you've certainly gotten a lot of opinions - and a lot of good facts as well.
I admit right up front that I am prejudiced, and I also admit that we've not cruised our CSY 44 "Walkover" cutter, La Nostra, anywhere but the Caribean, so our first hand experience is not as wide as EC's - at least not with this boat. WE have, however, spent a good deal of time between the Chesapeake Bay (primarily a light air area all summer, with LOTS of 'skinny" water in which to polish your keel) and Maine on a variety of boats - some of which we've owned, some of which we chartered for a week or two, so we're not total novices, either. (Been sailing since age 9 - now 65!)
Ours is not the fastest boat on the pond, but she is by no means a slug, either. She'll foot along with some pretty good company in winds 10 kt and above, and, being a deep draft version, she'll do it on most points of sail. We've learned how to manage the sails to get optimal performance as well. Sometimes we fly the staysail, and sometimes we don't - depends on conditions.
In light air - which we have experienced - with sails properly trimmed we move along fairly well. Of course, light displacement boats with lots of sail area blow past us, but among the heavier cruising boats we hold our own. Before we take off on our world cruise, however, we are definitely going to add one of the new, huge, light weight asymmetrical cruising headsails to our inventory. The "gennaker" type - easy to handle, yet quite efficient - make the most sense. Wil roll up the Yankee and staysail and run with the big headsail and the main.
On the other hand, when things blow up a bit and the going gets bumpy, that's when we start to love this boat. Her hull form gives her a nice easy motion with none of the slamming and pounding asociated with many of the lighter craft. The semi-clipper bow curls away many waves which would wind up on the foredeck of other boats, and those that do find their way on board are almost always stopped by the shape of the deck structure long before they get to the cockpit. With double or triple reefed main and staysail we are quite comfortable on conditions up to 30-35 kt, and the hull shape keeps things fairly smooth and stable. The deep keel also adds sability and helps keep her tracking properly in following seas.
(Running the boat in crewed charter service as we do, we are often more-or-less forced to venture out in conditions which are keeping others in port so we can be where we need to be when we need to be there to pick up our guests or the get them back to their airports on time.)
As to accomodations - we think the walkover layout is nearly perfect. Large cabin forward with ample storage space. Large main head with SEPARATE SHOWER STALL. (We love this - especially with guests on board.) Large, comfortable, WELL VENTILLATED main salon, with plenty of space for 6 people. Very workable galley (no, its not U shaped - and this is a liability in a seaway - but we've learned how to work it in most conditions), and at anchor it is a real delight to be able to have two people working there without tripping over each other. (Remember, even circumnavigators spend about 90% of their time in port). There is more fridge and freezer space aboard than we have at home! Oh, yes - we love the totally separate aft cabin, with head and shower. This lets guests have their own private area, and when its just the two of us it affords the opportunity to get completely out of each other's face once in a while. It also is a wonderful living area - large, bright and airey. Granted, when its pouring rain you can get wet running from the saloon to the aft cabin, but we usually have a top up over the cockpit.
That huge center cockpit is also a big plus. When we were doing our search I was totally against center cockpits, and wanted only a smallish aft cockpit for offshore work. I was leaning towards Valiants and their kind. HOWEVER! Now that we own one, I wouldn't trade it! We can entertain 6 or 8 in true comfort. Two can actually dine and dance under the stars. It is our outdoor patio, and we spend most of our time in it. Plenty of room to stretch out for a nap, yet lots of handholds and high seatbacks to keep things snug when the going gets tough. And, it is up away from the waves, so it is very dry. The question often comes up, what happens when a wave comes aboard and fills that big thing full of heavy seawater? So far we don't know for sure, but I'm inclined to say that not vey much would happen. The hull is heavy and strong with lots of lead down below for stability, so I think we'd stay upright OK. The hatches to the engine room are well gasketed and locked, so they don't leak, as are the lazarette covers. There are 4 huge drains in the floor with 2" hoses to through hulls, so it would empty pretty quickly. It remains a small concern, but only that.
For power the boat has been upgraded to a Perkins 4-236 making 85 hp which turns a 22" 3 bladed prop, so we have plenty of motor power when needed.
WE have 7 large, heavy-duty opening hatches to let in the light and breezes, plus 19 - yes, 19, count 'em - opening ports! Most are the original beautuful cast bronze items, but we've taken out the el cheapo plastic ports in the aft cabin and replaced them with cast stainless items - including the three across the transom. Even in the tropics on a still day the area below decks remains comfortable, and we do not have (or want) A/C. (Does make for quite a fire drill when they're all open and it starts to rain!)
We still have the club boom on the staysail, which makes it self tending when tacking and easy to handle, but we are giving serious consideration to removing it (for safety rasons) and adding a roller furler on the staysail. The decks are plenty large enough to handle the needed gear without getting cluttered.
True - some of the newer designed boats are getting away from the cutter rig, but we like it, especially when there are just the two of us on board. It makes the sails all a bit smaller (easier to handle), and affords so many options on sail plan: All three up and pulling, staysail and single or double reefed main when things start to blow, triple reefed main and partially rolled or reefed staysail (when properly built) in heavy conditions. Add a light air headsail, a mainsail handling setup (we like the Dutchman system) and a proper storm trysail on it's own track and you have it all in easy to handle segments.
As to glass vs. metal - all have their tradeoffs. Steel is strong, but it rusts, period! If you want brute strength, and you really like to scrape, sand and paint things on a regular basis while hangin by your toes upside down in an airless bilge, then steel is for you. (Of course, you can always get a second job and pay someone to do this for you.) Aluminum is light and strong, but we've seen a lot of pretty well bent-up aluminum boats. Hull panels tend to cave in a bit between the stringers and decks bend when pounded by big waves. They get pretty ugly, too. The hulls oxidize and get all gray and dull. True, this protects them, and they don't really need paint, but the look does nothing for me. I don't care what they say, to me being able to look out over an anchorage and feel I have one of the best looking boats there IS important! "Glass" is a very good material, provided it is used properly. No rot, no rust, holds a finish very well, worms and bugs don't eat it - with minimal care it lasts seemingly for ever. WHEN PROPERLY DESIGNED AND LAID UP! That said, lots of glass boats are too ligtly constructed and flex and crack. Others have poorly laminated hulls or decks. Still others have inner liners which make it easy for the builder to put in the furniture, etc. but make it nearly impossible to access some areas for maintenance. The CSY s seem to have good layups, have stringers and bulkheads which are strong and properly tabbed to the hull. and afford reasonable access to most areas. There are vulnerable areas under the sole where wooden joists provide support. These can rot or crack under certain conditions, but ours are holding up fine after 27 years (so far as I know). The hulls are VERY thick, and are solid glass. This is relatively heavy compared to cored hulls, but I'll carry a bit of extra weight and not worry about hull delamination or core rot any day. Same with the decks - solid, no cores. This means you can add and subtract hardware and not worry about water getting into the balsa betwen the deck layers - there isn't any! As for being rugged, our boat broke loose from her mooring in St. Maarten in '96 during a hurricane. She hit and sank two other boats (one of which was a CSY 37), took out a wooden dock and badly damaged the concrete pier against which she finally stopped. Had to replace the bow pulpit and two stanchions, replace the cap rail along the port bow and make some cosmetic repairs to the hull in that area as well. She also needed to hae her paint re-done to deal with all the scrapes and abrasions. To me, that's a pretty strong boat. (We also heard of an instance in the Chesapeake where a 20 foot power boat towing a skiier slammed into a boat like ours broadside at full speed. Driver and pasenger severely injured. Power boat completely destroyed. CSY needed to repaint the area! That, sir, is strong ... and that's the side of the hull above the waterline - they are even stronger below!
So - after all of that - is a 44 or 37 (very similar to a 44 walkover without the aft cabin) the right boat for you? I don't know. Depends on what trade-offs you are willing to make (there are ALWAYS tradeoffs!). Fast? Important - and we think we're fast enough for our use. Comfortable? Absolutely - at sea AND in port - and we really value that. Stowage space? We still are finding more each year - and we never use it all. 400 gal water tankage. 100 gal fuel. An engine which is very easy to get to, with room all around it in which to work - with PLENTY OF FRESH AIR WHILE DOING SO! Heavy, but very strong. Not the most nimble boat in every fleet, but will take you safely through conditions where those faster boats will fail. WE also love the more traditional look - especially when we're sitting among a bunch of look-alike chlorox bottles.
By the way - that 37 B-plan is a great boat - but to me that shoal keel would be a deal-breaker. I wouldn't own one knowing a deep draft version is available in the same boat - but that's just me - and is because I don't like to sail sideways, I like to go to weather and I don't like to roll a lot when at anchor.
If you have any questions feel free to ask either in this forum or via e-mail.
Also, check out http://www.thetwocaptains.com. This site is by two former charter boat captains - one with a 44 CSY walkover the other with a 44 CSY walkthrough design - who married, sold one boat, upgraded the other, and are out cruising full time.
Hope this helps a bit. At least it will give you another perspective against which to measure your own preferences - which is, after all, the very bottom line!
Check out our website - address below.
Happy Hunting!
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Old 30-12-2004, 14:09   #13
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Amen Brother.

Agree with all of the above.

Fast? Well...Slow...Well.

Depending what one compares 'em to.

My ship, the smallest CSY at 33 feet with the shortest waterline, and with the most weight added to it (Tools, spares, equipement etc) ain't not racing boat, BUT we have actually passed 2 other sailboats in the same conditions with about the same sail configuration:

Sailing North along the Exuma chain, on the West side on a beam reach, about 16 to 18 knots of wind, we slowly overtook and passed a boat with P-36 stamped on the mainsail. (I assume it was a Pearson 36)

Then we overtook and passed another boat that looked like a Cabo Rico 38.

We flew a full main, full stays'l and a reefed jib and heeled about 15 degrees or so.
None of the boats towed a dink.

My wife and I was a bit surprissed that we actually "raced" past somebody and called the first boat up on VHF and told 'em they were the first boat we have ever sailed away from.

(it came out a bit different than intended and the couple on the other boat did not sound too friendly...Oh well, did not mean to pie 'em off, but probably did)

Point is, the CSY boats sail quite well when the wind is blowing.

With less than 10 knots we sail fairly good in sheltered water, but any kind of frontal waves will slow us down and the boat starts hobby-horsing, the only remedy is to bear of 30 degrees or so.
Meh thinks this is because of the fat underbody and weight in the ends..
(Vessel, not skipper.. )

Up front is a huge anchor and lots of chain/line plus windlass.
Then another anchor rode under the V-berth.
In the aft end is the crew, sometimes 4 "full bodied" adults.
Also more anchors and chain in the back.

A racing boat would probably have all the weight in the middle and down low....?

At any rate, every boat is a compromise of some sort, the CSYs also, but that being said, I have never met an un-happy CSY owner, including the folks with the cut-keel.

One could probably do worse than choosing one for long distance sailing...And if the money was indeed available, one could buy a Goozad or Pacific Seacraft 44 for a cool $500.000 and sail away with little or no compromise.

If yer bank manager ain't all that understanding, check out the CSY boats in the meantime....
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Old 05-01-2005, 23:31   #14
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We are extremely impressed and appreciative of everyone's input and have developed confidence in the cruising community where cruisers so willingly share knowledge and experience. Your input has reinforced the criteria we have established in our search for the right boat. We are now convinced a full keel is the only choice for us and 44' for optimum liveaboard comfort (our adult kids think we need the extra space as well). While many boats are out of our budget range the CSY certainly fits the "bill".

Thanks again for all your thoughtful replies. This is a great website!
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Old 06-01-2005, 19:31   #15
Now on the Dark Side: Stink Potter.
 
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Hi Bev and Bill.

I just posted a couple of photos in the photo gallery this evening. check 'em out...All CSY stuff.

Also, it so happens that a friend is selling his deep keel CSY 44 these days...He is a United pilot and after several pay-cuts and wife-pressures the boat is going on the market soon..So far no broker involved...The ship is not cruise ready, but a decent start.

Price should be realistic also.

PM me for details.
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