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Old 17-05-2012, 11:26   #31
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

Just for fun but germain to the OP, Hugo Vihlen crossed the Atlantic from Casablanca to Florida in the 6 ft. sailboat "April Fool". The boat is currently on display in the Mariner's Museum in Newport News and is quite a sight.

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Old 17-05-2012, 11:35   #32
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Originally Posted by Pete7

I want to be able to stand up inside each morning to put my trousers on. Anything less is nautical camping.

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That's my philosophy. Everyone says go small and go soon but I would hate not being able to stand up straight. Cruising wouldn't be fun for me that way.
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Old 17-05-2012, 14:24   #33
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

Here is another data point:

In 1983, keen to find out about "blue water" sailing, Ann and I sailed our Yankee 30 from SF to Hawaii and back. We had a great time, learned that we did indeed like voyaging, and gained valuable experience. Survived a named tropical storm on the way (did our best ever days run under just a storm jib, too!). The boat did just fine.

But, we also learned that passage making in a boat that liked to sail at 25+ degrees of heel angle -- something that hadn't been a problem for us coastal cruising -- was very fatiguing for us after a few days at sea, watch on watch. So, we bit the bullet and bought Insatiable one, a 36' ex-race boat when we left for good 4 years later.

So, I gotta agree with the folks above who point out that your personal comfort level is a deciding factor. It isn't just enjoyment of life, but the ability to get enough rest at sea to be safe, and for us, that was indeed size related.

YMMV

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Old 17-05-2012, 15:10   #34
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

That is the best advice I have heard on the subject...
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Old 17-05-2012, 15:46   #35
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

I loved my Dana 24 and would have complete confidence in crossing an ocean in her. Handled rough seas much better than my old 32 footer. I sailed her from Canada to Mexico, but I guess really would be classified as "coastal". Would not want to go smaller myself.
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Old 18-05-2012, 06:32   #36
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

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That's my philosophy. Everyone says go small and go soon but I would hate not being able to stand up straight. Cruising wouldn't be fun for me that way.
And here's the whole issue in a nutshell. Different people have different ideas about what they want and what would make them comfortable. Asking other people what THEY need to be comfortable cannot possibly tell you anything about what YOU need to be comfortable.

No offense meant to the OP. This is a very common sort of question, but it is misguided. It cannot produce any useful information. It is such a personal matter that only you can decide what is right for you.

I have spent weeks at a time aboard a 23' boat with my wife. I now know that is too small for us. I have spent weeks at a time aboard a 44' boat with my wife. I now know that we don't need anything quite that large. But that's just us. You will most certainly have different opinions, attitudes, perspectives, wants, and needs than we do. You just have to decide for yourself.
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Old 18-05-2012, 07:09   #37
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
Interesting that no one has (yet?!) suggested a vessel based on a 6 foot rubber ring - with a canopy.

But I guess that the rubber ring based "safe" is only applicable in conditions that have overwhelmed a 40 foot boat........
You are the heart of wit as always DOJ.
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Old 18-05-2012, 07:15   #38
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
No offense meant to the OP. This is a very common sort of question, but it is misguided. It cannot produce any useful information. It is such a personal matter that only you can decide what is right for you.
I disagree, for some people a discussion such as this with differing viewpoints will change their expectations. Changed expectations will change how they reaction to and perception of the activity when they first experience it. On the other hand for some people it does nothing.
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Old 20-05-2012, 07:55   #39
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
Interesting that no one has (yet?!) suggested a vessel based on a 6 foot rubber ring - with a canopy.

But I guess that the rubber ring based "safe" is only applicable in conditions that have overwhelmed a 40 foot boat........

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Old 20-05-2012, 09:05   #40
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

I loved denverdon's post#36..."in a nut shell"..good pun there...but also good info.....and the photo evoked by DOJ's comment on post #39..made the day....Thanks...
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Old 20-05-2012, 14:44   #41
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

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That's been saved for future use .
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Old 20-05-2012, 14:56   #42
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

Might be right,,,,,you can always start out with a banana boat first

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Old 20-05-2012, 14:58   #43
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

I wouldn't have any qualms about sailing off into hoodoo land in my Nimble 20 but I'd rather take the 48'er. Not because of safety - you cant sink the Nimble but it gets tough to live on after awhile because it's so small!
I've got news for you - it's safer out in Hoodoo land than it is along shore!
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Old 20-05-2012, 16:25   #44
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I would confidently sail many of the boats listed under 30' -contessa, flicka, Dana, and many others too. I think that the 30' range is a practical size, even 28' just for tankage, stowage and comfort without too much cost.

Constantin, my first boat was a WWP 19 and I took it offshore more towards the end of ownership. Nearshore and short distance, but I quickly traded up to a Cape Dory 30. The West Wight Potter had a little to much hull flex, plus the lack of inboard motor, and the centerboard that would sometimes come loose. That said, it was perfect for shallow water, mountain lakes and limited coastal work. I miss the places it took me, but preferably
Not on a multi- day passage with potential thunderstorms, or even in a fresh NE breeze + chop on the Pamlico. However, I would go core sound to cape lookout over and over and never get tired of that!

Best of luck to the OP, I'd say 28' minimum; 34 is my sweet spot for the type of passagemaking you listed.
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Old 20-05-2012, 17:00   #45
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Re: What is the Smallest Boat That You Would Sail Outside of Coastal Waters?

After reading Jim Cate's reply I am wondering if it is the displacement/ weight of a boat or type of keel that makes a small boat more comfortable (ie: does a boat with a full keel heel less than one with a fin?)
I've been in love with the Dana for some time but have read she is not great in light winds and am worried that a small boat might be too rolly even though she is described as having a sea-kindly motion...
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