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Old 04-11-2014, 17:55   #301
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
What is this Teflon/Delrin piece you speak of? We certainly do not have this in our spade rudder system.

Are you describing the bearings? If so, I don't think this is a major factor in rudder failures. And while changing bearings every 4-5 years may be SOP for some boats, I think that is a very weak design indeed. I don't know of any boats needing fresh bearings that often.

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I totally agree on the life of these bearings. Well designed, they may outlive the vessel. I replaced only my lower when I rebuilt the rudder and only because I wrecked it. (1984 built) You can buy replacements very inexpensively from IGUS

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If you are wearing them out fast, then the PV (loading) is too high or the material is inappropriate.
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Old 04-11-2014, 20:28   #302
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Re: Rudder Failures

Interesting thread. A couple of posters make points again and again about newer production boats and their improved design and build.
I agree that most folks buying cruising boats should buy a bene/catalina/hunter/jeanneau/bavaria as they are coastal, occasional sailors who won't seriously test their boats.
I agree that all of the above boats could cross oceans.

I disagree that there is great engineering that makes them stronger. There is engineering that allows them to be built more weakly and cheaply without catastrophic failure. At least under 90%conditions.
I disagree that new designs are vastly superior sailing boats. They are faster in inshore conditions without much compromise (but are slower in light wind due to wetted surface aft). Ultra wide sterns in cruising boats lead to vastly superior docked and anchored boats. How they handle and track, especially in a seaway, is more questionable. If you think that wide sterns on cruisers brings same benefits as wide sterns on open ocean racers, then you have bought the marketing.

If the new boats are so much better engineered and built, how to explain iron keels? Brass through hulls? Non tabbed bulkheads? Cheap veneer doors with sharp, unfinished edges?

Again, most of these things don't matter for most buyers, and there's no reason to be defensive about this if you own one. Let's just not use smoke, mirrors, and marketing to pretend that somehow there is a magic way for some boats to be cheapest, biggest, and best.
Cars are not a good analogy, because engineering has advanced much further such that cheap cars are as reliable and robust as expensive cars, but just have less amenities. Boats are like cars in the 80s, where you got much more if you paid more in many cases.

If bigger and cheaper is better, then mass production boats- like McMansions in the US- hit the mark. Many folks live happily in Mcmansions. And hopefully the corners cut to meet the price point despite size don't affect most. But pretending that a house with brick in front and plastic siding sides is as robust as a full brick house is just not accurate. But it lets folks live in their 5000 sq foot splendor without paying top price. I think most parts of analogy hold true for sailboats.


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Old 04-11-2014, 20:52   #303
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Interesting thread. A couple of posters make points again and again about newer production boats and their improved design and build.
I agree that most folks buying cruising boats should buy a bene/catalina/hunter/jeanneau/bavaria as they are coastal, occasional sailors who won't seriously test their boats.
I agree that all of the above boats could cross oceans.

I disagree that there is great engineering that makes them stronger. There is engineering that allows them to be built more weakly and cheaply without catastrophic failure. At least under 90%conditions.
I don't disagree with you on this point, actually. Though I would push that percentage up to around 99%.

I don't think anyone around here is saying that production boats are built for survival storms. They're not of course (but which boats out there are actually marketed as such?). But as Hal Roth said in his book "Handling Storms at Sea", with even 200K+ miles under his keel, the chances of getting caught in one of those is 1% or less if you're at all diligent.

So, the real question comes down to whether you want to spend 3-5+ times more on a "bluewater boat" (which is also not marketed as being designed for survival storm conditions, by the way) - simply because you are obsessed with that 1% chance and buy into the "bluewater hype".

All I've ever held regarding production boats is essentially what you're saying as well...that they are perfectly suitable to the kind of sailing that 99% of cruisers out there do...including crossing oceans with at least some care given to the weather. As a matter of fact - it happens all the time as has been repeatedly pointed out. So the hype is just wrong.

It's really pretty simple. If you want to spend more on a boat - by all means do so. It's your business. But if you're doing it to feel safe sailing into a survival storm - you're probably doing it for the wrong reasons.
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Old 05-11-2014, 01:07   #304
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Re: Rudder Failures

Smack, I am getting closer to agreeing with you on this last point. With good due diligence and a wee bit of luck even with water sailing">blue water sailing you should not exceed the design/build limitations of most new production boats if you stay in the lower latitudes.
That said I would not say these boats will take everything up to "survival storm conditions" as the conditions some of these boats have failed in are quite a bit further down the scale, say strong gale conditions.
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Old 05-11-2014, 04:36   #305
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Re: Rudder Failures

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I don't disagree with you on this point, actually. Though I would push that percentage up to around 99%.

I don't think anyone around here is saying that production boats are built for survival storms. They're not of course (but which boats out there are actually marketed as such?). But as Hal Roth said in his book "Handling Storms at Sea", with even 200K+ miles under his keel, the chances of getting caught in one of those is 1% or less if you're at all diligent.

So, the real question comes down to whether you want to spend 3-5+ times more on a "bluewater boat" (which is also not marketed as being designed for survival storm conditions, by the way) - simply because you are obsessed with that 1% chance and buy into the "bluewater hype".

All I've ever held regarding production boats is essentially what you're saying as well...that they are perfectly suitable to the kind of sailing that 99% of cruisers out there do...including crossing oceans with at least some care given to the weather. As a matter of fact - it happens all the time as has been repeatedly pointed out. So the hype is just wrong.

It's really pretty simple. If you want to spend more on a boat - by all means do so. It's your business. But if you're doing it to feel safe sailing into a survival storm - you're probably doing it for the wrong reasons.
Correct- we do agree on this point. Where I disagree is on the little details, like hull deck joint or port lights. A cheaply built boat may suffer "death from a thousand cuts" of sorts. Leaks, electrical issues, poorly working systems, creaking interiors...

i just think it's better to buy a used higher quality boat than a new/nearly new mass production boat, unless you plan to sell within a few years.


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Old 05-11-2014, 04:44   #306
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Originally Posted by malbert73 View Post
Correct- we do agree on this point. Where I disagree is on the little details, like hull deck joint or port lights. A cheaply built boat may suffer "death from a thousand cuts" of sorts. Leaks, electrical issues, poorly working systems, creaking interiors...

i just think it's better to buy a used higher quality boat than a new/nearly new mass production boat, unless you plan to sell within a few years.


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The problem is that you blindly just assume that new mass produced boats have these "cheaply built" items.
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Old 05-11-2014, 04:46   #307
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Re: Rudder Failures

Not all, but many do. And trust me, I have done a lot of due diligence on boats before my current purchase. So blindly, no. I also am not mentioning brands (though I have my list)




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Old 05-11-2014, 06:39   #308
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Originally Posted by malbert73 View Post
..
I disagree that new designs are vastly superior sailing boats. They are faster in inshore conditions without much compromise (but are slower in light wind due to wetted surface aft). Ultra wide sterns in cruising boats lead to vastly superior docked and anchored boats. How they handle and track, especially in a seaway, is more questionable. If you think that wide sterns on cruisers brings same benefits as wide sterns on open ocean racers, then you have bought the marketing.
...
I don't know of what you are talking about when you refer to new designs. We were talking about boats designed 30 years ago and contemporary designs. Anyway what you say has not any support on reality. Each new model from the same brand perform better than the one that substitutes and if that difference is slight in what regards two immediate models it is big in ten years and huge in 30 years.

Europeans don't believe in that crap and the boats they use to go offshore and cross oceans are relatively new models. Go to the ARC results and even if by the stated reason you will find some difficulty in finding older boats, you will see that older boats, like some Nauticat, Trintela, Moody and older Contest took a lot more time to cross the Ocean than modern designed boats.

You don't know about what you are talking about regarding wide sterns. A boat with a ultra wide stern is not necessarily beamy but means that all the beam was pulled back. That is what makes an ultra wide stern and even racers use them today on most boats. if you refer to beamy boats with all the beam pulled aft, the one that I know that has that characteristic more enhanced is the cruising Pogo and its performance in light wind is just great. Yes, in absolute therms a wide stern can take away some light air potential but diminish roll downwind and makes the boat more easy to control and therefore faster. It is a positive trade off for most sailors that sail more downwind and also to those that cross Oceans or circumnavigate, since most of the time they go on the trade winds that are, as all know, downwind winds.

If you compare the light wind performance of a modern beamy boat, a main market boat, like an Oceanis or an Hanse with the light wind performance of a main market old 30 year boat you will see that the modern boats are way faster on those conditions. I don't understand how you can have any doubt about that.

I believe that what happens on this forum regarding the positive image of old boats and its performance has to do with what somebody has accused Smack to do: The posters are being defensive regarding what they own as a boat. As usual on mostly American boat forums the average age of the forum member's boats is big and therefore the great value they attribute to old designs and old boats.

If old boats were better you would find that their value on the used market was bigger the the one of the new boats and regarding to their initial value that just don't happens.

There is anybody owing a less then 10 year old boat saying that older boats were faster or sailed better, bluewater or not? I don't think so
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Old 05-11-2014, 06:51   #309
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Re: Rudder Failures

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I don't know of what you are talking about when you refer to new designs. We were talking about boats designed 30 years ago and contemporary designs. Anyway what you say has not any support on reality. Each new model from the same brand perform better than the one that substitutes and if that difference is slight in what regards two immediate models it is big in ten years and huge in 30 years.

Europeans don't believe in that crap and the boats they use to go offshore and cross oceans are relatively new models. Go to the ARC results and even if by the stated reason you will find some difficulty in finding older boats, you will see that older boats, like some Nauticat, Trintela, Moody and older Contest took a lot more time to cross the Ocean than modern designed boats.

You don't know about what you are talking about regarding wide sterns. A boat with a ultra wide stern is not necessarily beamy but means that all the beam was pulled back. That is what makes an ultra wide stern and even racers use them today on most boats. if you refer to beamy boats with all the beam pulled aft, the one that I know that has that characteristic more enhanced is the cruising Pogo and its performance in light wind is just great. Yes, in absolute therms a wide stern can take away some light air potential but diminish roll downwind and makes the boat more easy to control and therefore faster. It is a positive trade off for most sailors that sail more downwind and also to those that cross Oceans or circumnavigate, since most of the time they go on the trade winds that are, as all know, downwind winds.

If you compare the light wind performance of a modern beamy boat, a main market boat, like an Oceanis or an Hanse with the light wind performance of a main market old 30 year boat you will see that the modern boats are way faster on those conditions. I don't understand how you can have any doubt about that.

I believe that what happens on this forum regarding the positive image of old boats and its performance has to do with what somebody has accused Smack to do: The posters are being defensive regarding what they own as a boat. As usual on mostly American boat forums the average age of the forum member's boats is big and therefore the great value they attribute to old designs and old boats.

If old boats were better you would find that their value on the used market was bigger the the one of the new boats and regarding to their initial value that just don't happens.

There is anybody owing a less then 10 year old boat saying that older boats were faster or sailed better, bluewater or not? I don't think so

Ok guys, Pólux is calling you old farts!!
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Old 05-11-2014, 08:05   #310
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Re: Rudder Failures

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I think you are plain wrong. Yes it is polyester glass (that's a generic name) but not the same as 50 years ago, Resins are of a lot better quality and the fiber too. 50 years ago it was used A glass today everybody uses Eglass. Regarding using less resin, if that technique is well controlled and done (as it is on mass production boats) if the quantity is the right one to impregnate all the fiber but not more, the fiberglass is more strong, less brittle and less heavy. Big advances were made in what regard that and some mass production boats use an infusion process to obtain better results.

Regarding boat resistance and less flexing the use of cored hulls and decks is today the norm and the materials used for the core have been in constant evolution but most of all computational analysis of the stress efforts in the difference parts of the boat (on the design stage) lead to a better use of the materials, making boats stronger where they need to be strong and lighter where they don't need to be that strong.


You have swallowed the hype hook, line, and sinker. If they read your posts, they'd say "whew, those advertising dollars were well spent after all". Maybe less total buy in to the hype and more hard questions would get them to spend more of those dollars on making a better boat instead of hype, but you are proving their method right. You sound just like a brochure. Believe me, very little has changed for the better on the buyer side. The vast majority of changes in recent times have been about the builders bottom line, not a higher quality product. But they spend a lot of money trying to conceal that fact. Clearly, it's working.
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Old 05-11-2014, 09:18   #311
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Re: Rudder Failures

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You have swallowed the hype hook, line, and sinker. If they read your posts, they'd say "whew, those advertising dollars were well spent after all". Maybe less total buy in to the hype and more hard questions would get them to spend more of those dollars on making a better boat instead of hype, but you are proving their method right. You sound just like a brochure. Believe me, very little has changed for the better on the buyer side. The vast majority of changes in recent times have been about the builders bottom line, not a higher quality product. But they spend a lot of money trying to conceal that fact. Clearly, it's working.
Yes, of course, you own a Nauticat 52, one of those old boats that is heavy and slow and your opinion goes with the boat you own.

Nauticat still makes some of those heavy and slow boats for old timers but when the son took over the firm (it is a family firm) he started to make much more modern boats, faster, lighter and much better designed. Even old traditional boat builders like Nauticats have changed even if slowly:

Old Nauticats (they have the good sense of calling them motorsailors now:
Traditional motorsailers
More modern Nauticats:
Pilothouse sailing yachts

Well modern is a way of speaking, in fact they are not very modern and only the smaller boats 385, 37, 351 and 321 offer a relatively decent sailing performance. Even so their sells have been very low, being their boats out performed by the Nordships, much better designed, much faster,lighter and equally very well built, but with more modern technology.

If we compare two boats on their respective catalogs, the Nauticat 441 (an old design) and the Nordship 43 we can see that it is not on mass production boats that modern design can offer better sailing boats, with a much better performance and seakeeping characteristics.

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Old 05-11-2014, 10:33   #312
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Correct- we do agree on this point. Where I disagree is on the little details, like hull deck joint or port lights. A cheaply built boat may suffer "death from a thousand cuts" of sorts. Leaks, electrical issues, poorly working systems, creaking interiors...

i just think it's better to buy a used higher quality boat than a new/nearly new mass production boat, unless you plan to sell within a few years.
Okay - so I think we have reasonably established that, contrary to the typical "bluewater" hype in forums, production boats are perfectly capable of bluewater sailing. It's good to finally put that one to bed.

So, beyond that we come to the discussion of degrees. Whether it's weather, durability, etc. - it's a matter of degrees when comparing one boat (like an older "bluewater" brand) to another (like a more modern production boat). Both can very comfortably handle typical cruising conditions and both can handle storms to varying degrees...with neither being "suited" to a survival storm.

So, how to break down those degrees? We've been through a lot of that in my Limits thread on SN, so I'm not going to re-hash it here. But there is one point you bring up that I think is very important to these discussions (and likely sacrilegious to most sailors) - and that's this:

Quote:
A cheaply built boat may suffer "death from a thousand cuts" of sorts. Leaks, electrical issues, poorly working systems, creaking interiors...

i just think it's better to buy a used higher quality boat than a new/nearly new mass production boat, unless you plan to sell within a few years.
Durability and longevity.

I honestly think most sailors' view of this is seriously out of whack. Do we really expect a used "high quality bluewater boat" to be as good as it was when it was built 20-30-40 years ago? Are its systems really superior to the newer production boats? No electrical issues? No leaks? No creaking? Really?

I think we all know that this is definitely not the case. There are way too many bluewater rehab threads/blogs out there that blow this theory out of the water. Yet, many people buy into that thinking in sometimes dangerous ways (RebelHeart anyone?)

Here's the sacrilegious point I'm trying to make - why do we have this expectation that new boats need to be built to last 50 years? How many people really own their boat for 50 years? Maybe a handful of people?

Again, the reality of the market is that people typically buy a boat and keep it several years - not several decades. And if you are a boat builder - how does it make any sense whatsoever for you to put more time and money into that boat to make it more attractive to the used market - and less attractive to new buyers because of the price? The economics of this approach are ludicrous - as is readily shown by the general weakness of the bluewater yacht market compared to the production yacht market.

So - when you say this:

Quote:
i just think it's better to buy a used higher quality boat than a new/nearly new mass production boat, unless you plan to sell within a few years.
This is probably the best argument out there for buying a new production boat. There is very, very little downside if you plan to cruise like 99% of the cruisers out there - then sell it after 10 or so years of doing so.

On the other hand, if you want to own a boat for 50 years - or do some high-latitude voyaging, then, yes it definitely makes more sense to get something much more robustly built. No argument there.

BUT - this approach does little for you if you buy an older bluewater boat that's already seen its best days. In that case, you simply have bought an expensive heirloom project - one that might even be hiding something dangerous. So, you should buy new - not old.

And we're back to price...and degrees...

(Of course, who really knows how long these new "poorly built, weak" production boats will last? I owned a ~40-year-old C27 for several years. Great little boat. Would you have thought back in 1973 that it, being very lightly built, would have still been sailing 40+ years later?)
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Old 05-11-2014, 10:49   #313
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A very interesting thread.

It appears we have many ideas, opinions, and suggestions to offer.

Perhaps the title of our thread should be changed to "Rudder Failure: Steering a Debate to Who Builds and Designs a Better Boat, and the People Who Know."

On a side note: I'll be helping a friend who has a spade rudder with multiple cracks and it appears that one crack is visible from the rudder post owning and downward to the leading edge about 12 inches.
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Old 05-11-2014, 10:50   #314
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Yes, of course, you own a Nauticat 52, one of those old boats that is heavy and slow and your opinion goes with the boat you own.
..............
Polux, with all due respect, Minaret is one person who many depend on here for advise and expert opinion. His expertise goes far beyond his own boat, and I would suggest at the very least to hear what he has to say about boat construction.

He is the guy that has to fix them. He sees the good, the bad, and some of the ugly. His observations are not opinion, but empirical experience. I personally find it invaluable that members like Minaret who bring their expertise to this forum, and freely give their advice.
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Old 05-11-2014, 10:58   #315
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Re: Rudder Failures

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Polux, with all due respect, Minaret is one person who many depend on here for advise and expert opinion. His expertise goes far beyond his own boat, and I would suggest at the very least to hear what he has to say about boat construction.

He is the guy that has to fix them. He sees the good, the bad, and some of the ugly. His observations are not opinion, but empirical experience. I personally find it invaluable that members like Minaret who bring their expertise to this forum, and freely give their advice.

Same here, Minaret opinions are Gold, and by the way he own a fine Nauticat, they have a really good reputation around the globe, build like tanks to deal with almost everything and the 55 is just a globetrotter with some good sail perfomance , after all is a pilothouse but the triple spreader rig make the diference... Hell even the old ones cost a fortune , they are respected everywhere! can Hunter or Bavaria say the same???
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