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Old 25-07-2016, 09:05   #16
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
Are you confusing dodgers and biminis? I have never seen a dodger that interfered in even the least way with seeing the sails. Almost all biminis do to some extent.
+1. Absolutely. I fold biminis back when I am sailing. The only time a dodger gets in the way is when flying chutes and trimming from the windward side.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:16   #17
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

a HUGE yes for having a Dodger. Anyone who "cant see" with a Dodger or Bimini is just too lazy to get off their ass.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:17   #18
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

Since having or not having a dodger and a bimini is a matter of choice, I can only state my opinion. As a full time live aboard I like the idea of having a full enclosure. I also like visibility and the option of raising/lowering the dodger as needed or wanted. Flexible isinglass that can be rolled is a nice feature for both the dodger and sides of enclosure and having screens with the flexible, rollable isinglass give the options required for needed ventilation. Since we use our cockpit as our boat's "patio" and do entertaining and cooking there too, I would hazard a guess that we spend about 80% of our time there. I want it to be as creature comfortable as possible. Having to duck my head to get under the dodger does not pose as much an issue as doing w/o the comfort that having all the option would. And finally if you really find the dodger an issue because you are entering and exiting with supplies and other gear, fold it down during those episodes.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:18   #19
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

When I bought my boat it had a fairly new soft dodger and bimini. The dodger was high enough to not limit access to the cabin. The first year I sailed with the forward windows down and installed a window in the bimini so I could somewhat see the sails. I would have cheerfully dumped the binimi and retained the dodger to keep rain out of the cockpit and provide a little shade but the rig was set up so the dodger was strapped to the bimini so its was all or nothing. I elected nothing. If the sun bothered me that much I would not be in Florida. Also no bimini means easier dock access, ability to fish from the cockpit and ability to see the sails. I might get around to jury rigging the dodger and reinstall it but it's real low on my priority list.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:19   #20
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

It's a mixed bag, but I absolutely hate dodgers. I get the people that feel otherwise, but to me they acomplish little, block air flow, and prevent you moving forward from the middle of the boat. Add in the ability to block any air flow into the cockpit....
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:24   #21
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

I presume from all of your descriptions you are all talking about a spray hood? Dodgers are what are attached to the guard wires running down each side of the cockpit area to protect you from waves slopping over the side and providing protection from the wind across the boat. I have dodgers on my boat but no spray hood as it inhibits the view forward.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:32   #22
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

I have a dodger that is like a windshield attached to the forward bow of my bimini (both fabric). I can't imagine being without either of them. The dodger has two roll-up windows that allows ventilation in the cockpit. Of course being on a catamaran means I don't have to go "down" into the main saloon lol.

If I had to choose I would dispense with the dodger, but only because I'd rather have some spray in my face than bake in the sun.

I've had biminis in the past with windows that supposedly allowed you to see the set of the sails. I'd rather have the shade. Not to mention that IMO if I weren't going to use the bimini when sailing I wouldn't have it in the first place, better shade for the cockpit with a tarp.

Doubtless latitude figures in the above.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:39   #23
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

If you beat to weather without a dodger all day, your face will feel it that night for sure.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:41   #24
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

I wouldn't have a cruising boat without a dodger.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:44   #25
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

I will never be without a dodger again. And not just one of those windshield type things, I'm talking a full on patio cover type of thing that allows the washboards to stay out in a downpour, and creates a nice shaded hole to hide from the sun.


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Old 25-07-2016, 09:52   #26
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

my formosa has neither dodger(spray hood) nor bimini. weather cloths are the cloths on the lifelines on side of boat in cockpit area.
i want both. it is sunny out here and under way in particular.
in marina it is a great place to hang your water deflectors.
dodgers are excellent places to keep solar panels.
while underway, a normal dodger will fold down. just make a sun proof cover for it for when you feel need to need it. that WILL happen and you willbe glad you didnt ditch it.
complete removal will be shooting self in foot, as you will find a dire need for it in not too many years, and thy are pricey to replace.
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:52   #27
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

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If you beat to weather without a dodger all day, your face will feel it that night for sure.
I should have mentioned we don't do that. An occasional squall but "they come on you fast and they leave" (or something like that.)
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Old 25-07-2016, 09:54   #28
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

A dodger is an absolute must. We would'nt imagine ourselves without one. The key is that the dodger must be easily retractable so that you can sail with a clear view on what's ahead and manoeuver with a good communication with your crew at the bow.
The aesthetic can be really be neat and give the ship nice lines, Just get the right guy to do it.
Good luck.
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Old 25-07-2016, 10:09   #29
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

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It's a mixed bag, but I absolutely hate dodgers. I get the people that feel otherwise, but to me they acomplish little, block air flow, and prevent you moving forward from the middle of the boat. Add in the ability to block any air flow into the cockpit....
Greg, I appreciate your POV. I think we also have to recognize that each of us sails in different waters. Blocking airflow in, say The Chesapeake, would be a bear, I understand. In that case, one could get a dodger that had easily rolled up forward 'glass. But in SF Bay, a dodger is a necessity, really. The water is cold, and regardless of how "dry" one's boat may be, when beating some water will and does come up over the bow into the cockpit. Getting a 55 degree water bath, even if you're in a T shirt and shorts, can be disconcerting.

I also agree with the poster who mentioned keeping hatchboards out even when it rains. That's a really good reason to enjoy dodgers.

As for safety, the side handrails on my dodger are the SAFEST place to be on my side decks.

Point being, we all have our reasons, but those are/should be/most likely are based on where and how we sail.

Your boat, your choice.
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Old 25-07-2016, 10:10   #30
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Re: Dodger? Yes or No

Even on a cat I slide in a windscreen - makes life so much more comfortable. Besides stopping the wet stuff it also can keep the chill wind off.
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