Originally Posted by Deep Blue Blues
Thank you for this input hamburking, make my day and barnakiel, Sounds like you've all gathered real experience on the flush deck design.
I'm looking at a swan 40. A very well maintained '72. #29.
The info here. On the poor maneuvering under motor
during high seas has me concerned. Hard to sail at night during a storm...
Not to over-think this one, Deep Blue. On the open ocean at night, she will sail herself quite well, with a wind vane steering
. Yes, the motion may be so vigorous as to preclude sleep, but the boat will be able to rise to seas as high as her spreaders, just fine, and although she may luff in the troughs, a little, she'll resume her heel angle as she lifts. Using wind vane steering
, you will be checking your heading frequently, and altering it as the wind
direction changes, but you will not find it hard to sail at night in a squall. If you have plenty of sea room, you'll even let it do its circle as she follows the wind
around. It beats "pole down, gybe, pole up, pole down, all the way through the tacking to get back to your original course" scenario, which is exhausting to do, shorthanded. I wish I had taken a picture of the GPS
track that night, it was a perfect loop-the-loop. ; - )
The way things develop, you'll have had some practice with the boat in nice weather
, and one day, realize you're ready to try more vigorous conditions, and go out to practice when you still have warm showers to come home to. Learning
the boat takes a while to come to trust it completely, but a good old boat like that is basically trustworthy.
on edit: Sorry, I didn't address the handling under motor
issue. We have had to use both engine
plus storm jib
to get out of an anchorage which had become untenable after a cyclone passed over our location. So, you may find that your boat is unable to make way to windward in a storm, without some help from a sail.
Otherwise, I would think you would be down to survival conditions before you even thought of using the engine
to maneuver in the 55 and up wind, dark, rain, and huge seas. You might be hove to, but unless you're planning to go some really nasty places or sail in storm force winds routinely, you are unlikely to encounter such conditions. Most cruising sailors tend to avoid them, but if you are going to seek them out, then, yes, it is a concern, but you'll have to experiment
and discover what works for that boat at the time. There are lots of books
about storm management, now, and I suspect, even U-tube presentations. Don't dwell on it, just learn beforehand so that you have some plans, and do your first few expeditions where you know you can run to safety
. Adlard Coles, Pardeys, both, among many others, have addressed storm survival.