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Old 18-12-2006, 04:47   #1
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In Praise of the Smaller Boat

In Praise of the Smaller Boat ~ by Skip Randall
Your Passport to Adventure Travel -- Sail and Power Boat Cruising

”In this age of “bigger is better,” it has been a real adventure going from a huge ketch to a mid-sized cruiser to a 25-foot trailer sailor. I’ve realized that one doesn’t necessarily need a big yacht to enjoy cruising. Sometimes smaller is better ...”
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Old 18-12-2006, 06:56   #2
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I love my 40 footer (I live aboard). That said, I have many happy memories from the summer weekends I spent with a lady friend on her Catalina 22. Alone or with the right person, a small boat can deliver wonderful cruises. You can get an amazing number of people on a little boat for a daysail.
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Old 18-12-2006, 12:29   #3
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Great link Gord,

The Sailfar page in my signature below has about 200 folks who see things the same way as the author of that article.

Lot's of ways to do.... so long as you do it.
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Old 18-12-2006, 12:52   #4
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Loved it. Another point is that a lot of people buty the diggest they can afford then spend the next couple of years hating their boat as it drains the bank balance and they discover ongoing ownership costs are far more important than purchase price.
Buy not the biggest you can afford but the smallest you can get away with.
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Old 18-12-2006, 17:48   #5
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My first boat, 27', my 2nd boat 36', this boat? 28' Need I say more?
Bob
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Old 18-12-2006, 18:23   #6
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Some of these new Pescott cats and quite a few of the older breeds like Seawind 24 can collapse on a trailer and be assembled in a few hour's.

Fast and fun, just drive 'em up onto the beach and step off, no dinghy required.

Great for going to windward at 100kph up the highway and then heading out to your favourite cruising ground.

Farriers tri's fold up a lot quicker, just a whole lot more expensive.

Dave
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Old 18-12-2006, 22:17   #7
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My first boat was 44', present boat 33'.

The islands, the sun, the sea and the rum are the same regardless of size.
No extra points for running up loans in the hundreds of thousands of dollars to have the biggest barge in the marina, but no time to go as ya work to pay for the big boat and her gear and maintenance.

Go small, go now, just go....
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Old 19-12-2006, 01:44   #8
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Sailfar is a site mainly for people with 30' or under boats.So many of these people cruise and don't just sail.The reason I'm a member and constantly surf the site is because SOOOO many of these kool people actually live on their boats full time.Contentment is deffinatly not measured in size,but, lifestyle.Mudnut.
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Old 19-12-2006, 06:23   #9
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Nice to see this movement is alive and well. I sure miss the days of a smaller boat. We bought large for chartering. Now that we're living aboard and not chartering, we use one entire stateroom as storage for light objects. We use maybe 2/3 of our 45' boat. One thing I like is the ability of a larger boat to handle rough seas.

Things that are not so great are:

Cost to maintain
Cost of dockage
Cost of diesel and everything
Purchase price
And the kicker - I have to work the next 2 years solid to pay off the damn loan. Wouldn't it be smarter to get a slightly smaller boat and have a cruising kitty all read to go? I think so.


PS: I also really miss sailing things like Hobie Cats, Lasers and 420's. Pure sailing fun without any of the responsibility!
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Old 19-12-2006, 06:39   #10
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Originally Posted by Wahoo Sails
My first boat, 27', my 2nd boat 36', this boat? 28' Need I say more?
Bob
Bob,

And as an added bonus, Cape Dory's are some of the prettiest boats out there.
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Old 19-12-2006, 09:22   #11
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Originally Posted by slow shoes
Bob,

And as an added bonus, Cape Dory's are some of the prettiest boats out there.
On behave of all Cape Dory owners I say thanks for the compliment.

The ability to put Seraph, my Cape Dory 25D on a trailer and get out of harms way is one of her nicest features. The fact that she can travel at 65mph from coast to coast AND once there go anywhere (see John Vigor's 2O Small Sailboats to Take You Anywhere) is another. Not needing a windlass, small sails, an inboard diesel, I can single hand her in 30kts plus with ease, and the list goes on.

randy Cape Dory 25D Seraph
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Old 19-12-2006, 12:00   #12
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On behave of all Cape Dory owners I say thanks for the compliment.

The ability to put Seraph, my Cape Dory 25D on a trailer and get out of harms way is one of her nicest features. The fact that she can travel at 65mph from coast to coast AND once there go anywhere (see John Vigor's 2O Small Sailboats to Take You Anywhere) is another. Not needing a windlass, small sails, an inboard diesel, I can single hand her in 30kts plus with ease, and the list goes on.

randy Cape Dory 25D Seraph
I have to admit I keep eyeballing the Cape Dories. They are beautiful. I got a chance to sail on a 25 (not the D) and she was a very nice ride. There is a 28 in my boat yard as well and she is stunning.
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Old 16-01-2007, 14:55   #13
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Originally Posted by ssullivan
PS: I also really miss sailing things like Hobie Cats, Lasers and 420's. Pure sailing fun without any of the responsibility!
Sean,

My first "boat" was a homemade raft on the Connecticut River. My best friend from high school and I would take a week-long trip each spring down an 80 mile stretch of the river - Huck Finn style. We had a homemade charcoal stove built on the front, wooden supply boxes, kerosene lanterns, and a pup-tent we'd pitch on deck at night. We drifted with the slow-moving current during the day and had adventures to last a lifetime.

I spent many an hour in canoes and kayaks before getting turned on to sailing with a Hobie 16. Today, I live aboard my PS Crealock 34 (except for the four months a year that the water is frozen up here). I haven't been able to give up the other smaller boats, though. They're just too much fun!

My sea kayak is 17' and has a 20 inch beam. I've had it out in up to 50 knot sustained winds (remnants of Hurricane Floyd several years back) - nothing like a small boat in a big storm to make you feel like a piece of flotsam.



My Nacra 6.0 is 20 feet of pure adrenaline! At 20+ knots, it's more akin to flying.



My PS Crealock 34 is a comfortable home and a solid, well-behaved cruising boat.



I love them all!
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Old 16-01-2007, 17:07   #14
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Sean - I always question that "bigger boat for bigger seas" statement. True you will make better time and have more comfort, assuming you have the crew. I know there are couples who sail big boats long distances, but I feel more confident in a smaller boat. Look at Donna Lange in her 28' Southern Cross. Little boats, by their nature and design, have less to go wrong. For a cruising couple, I still think buying as little boat as you can live on is the way.
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Old 16-01-2007, 17:08   #15
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Raven, each and every boat you have is beautiful. I can definitely appreciate the variety you have there. I can't even begin to imagine how great those Connecticut River trips were. Those are times that don't seem to happen so much anymore. Fantastic post. Thanks for sharing that. It's got to be one of the coolest things I've ever read about on here as far as adventures go. You can travel the world, but often some of the best times are had just stopping to smell the roses close to home.
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