Originally Posted by Deep Blue Blues
I think you're on to something. Smaller is certainly less work but perhaps a little less trust worthy in the rough? I'm torn between 26 - 37ft. How does one choose?!
Off course, I did not even try too hard to conceal it. In my book, big (relative) and heavy (meaning plenty of displacement
per LWL) is BAD (in the narrower aspect of solo).
Now your question. How does one choose. I think many choose by the budget
others choose by the purpose still others will have their own kinky criteria.
I am not sure which Ohlson was discussed but I know that the 38 is 37. So here you have your upper limit and it is manageable. This boat has plenty of shortcomings and so if I were given one I would likely keep it, adjust it and sail it happily ever after.
An IF is 26. And so here you have your lower limit. Again, they got married and lived happily ever after.
Size is not where trust worthy is. But trust worthy is, like many other things in life, scalable. Fantasi 37 is a 37' IF. Now if you ask if a Fantasi can be more trust worthy in the rough than an IF, all other things equal, then I would agree to agree. You see, boats do not sail by themselves. We sail them. In the rough, YOU will be tossed and thrown around and about, to the point where you no longer can. This point may come sooner if you are in an IF.
And all of the above are moderately heavy boats. And all are IMHO manageable and solo'able. And there are many other ways to do it. Webb Chiles is cruising and sailing long distances in a Moore 24. A friend of ours came to NZ in a Bull 9 and our other friends sailed into Auckland
(from SF, I think) in a J-35. In many ways a light boat is better for a solo sailor than a heavy one. In some other ways, it is not. Depends on your sailing/cruising ratio.
I do not know you that well but I can tell you it makes plenty of sense to have a long good look at oneself and try to find a boat that matches your character, your style, your own balance between speed and simplicity and ballast and reverse stability. I am happiest traveling on foot with just a rucksack but I have seen people coming to their boats with two heavy cases full of somethings. Look for a boat that will fit your life-style like a glove - be it a lace or a boxing one.
Ohlson 38 are good boats and low budget
, but it is difficult to get a sound and neat one. Rivals 38 are also nice, somewhat easier to get and they have the better cockpit
. I have seen some with staysail rig too. There is a very nice 40'er on the market right now (roaring forty) but she looks too inexpensive - possibly there was some kind of crash(?) to her. Boats like this are actually best for solo sailing because they were designed for just that.
Then again, many boats that feel not perfect at the start seem to grow on you somewhere like half way into your first rtw. You learn the idiosyncrasies and become aware that there are no perfect boats and that you are better off in the less perfect one that you know well than in that perfect one that we do not own.
That was a long sermon but our sins were many. Life is good for you and so is Shrubb Creole. I give you a 9/10 chance of being happy, provided you take off.