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Old 06-09-2013, 03:48   #16
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

I read your post with interest. I do think you may have it wrong on greater resale value on your return. There are lots of good reasons to want the larger ex-racer and you cover some of them but the costs are going to be higher. I've been there done that and I think you'll find selling a one off ex IOR racer turned cruiser will only be easy if your selling price is close to what you bought it for.
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Old 06-09-2013, 04:03   #17
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

I think there is a personal choice to buy a IOR racer for crousing, and you have to accept to spent much more money on it to make them ready for cruise.
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Old 06-09-2013, 04:04   #18
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Robert,

thanks for that.

To be honest, I don't know if a 1980s ex-racing boat can drop much in value below €25k. But assumingly it has been converted successfully into a cruiser with speed, it's value may be raised slightly (no where near the investment made to make it so).

Where as a 1970s cruiser (which is in the same budget range) will likely only drop in value, unless completely overhauled (which is a similar investment to making a racer into a cruiser?).

Marginal if any, have to agree with you there. Chances are we would keep it anyways for more sailing holidays/adventures, so the point could well be moot.

I've been reading the thread by Weyalan, and must say I am impressed by his efforts. Especially the head area has become very classy and 'light' by comparison to the old situation. I am not impressed however with his lack of pictures ;-). If I do get a boat with a lot of work, I will take pictures of the work, I promise!

Also on the matter of draught I am of course comparing apples to oranges. A 38ft with a draught of 5 feet is no fair comparison to a 45ft with 9 feet. Most 45 footers I had a look at on yachtworld from that era had around 7ft draught. So in effect only 2 ft more.

Looking solely at the equipment spec on this boat, and comparable cruising boats of similar budget, I would say I am getting a steal! But of course there is more to a boat than equipment! When you buy a boat for 25k€ you expect to spend at least as much outfitting her, if not more! We are hoping to do a lot of the work ourselves, so most of the cost would be materials/tools.

Here is to hoping the hull, rudder and rigging are OK, the rest is comparatively a DIY exercise, right?
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Old 06-09-2013, 04:05   #19
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Campr - Very often the problem with ex-racers of this era is the fact that they have been pushed to the limits for too long, or as we might say in the states they have been "rode hard and put away wet!"

Unlike many of the cruising boats I have seen, which spend most of their lives sitting quietly at anchor, many racing boats are used on a weekly schedule, twice a week and often on days it's too windy to go for a pleasure sail. They are sailed by a full crew of big heavy guys who basically go out and beat the hell out of it while sailing around the bouys.

Even a well built boat can only take so much abuse, you may find when you see it in person, that the reason it is so cheap is because it is tired and would require an extensive and costly refit, and while it may have a lot of equipment and sails they may be as used up as the rest of the boat and not worth so much. In the end it might not be worth the trouble.

Regarding the tubing down below, this is often referred to a a "space frame" and is used to more efficiently carry the loads of the rig. In order to have a narrow sheeting angle with the big overlapping headsails of the time period when this boat was built, a narrow shroud base is required. This narrow base requires massive compression loads at the keel and equally massive tension loads at the chainplates to hold the mast up straight.

The "space frame" concept is also applied to architecture which is where you may have seen examples of it in the past. Good luck!

Space frame - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 06-09-2013, 04:25   #20
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

So the question is really this (let's rephrase again):

Are you prepared to put up with a certain amount of discomfort, less luxury, more draught and an unknown quantity in the life left of the boat for the advantage of having a slightly (sometimes a lot) faster boat?

In this case the comparison is skewed as I am comparing boats based on the current purchase value, not the realistic total value (refit etc etc). Also I'm comparing a 38ft cruiser to a 45ft racer. Not really a fair comparison for either boat.

I feel that I can throw numbers and advantages/disadvantages at this all day, but it all comes down to: Am/Are I/we prepared to do the extra work and put in the extra money to have a faster cruiser, which might or might not be more reliable/sturdy once refitted?

The answer is different for everyone, I'm sure.

Robert
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Old 06-09-2013, 04:31   #21
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Campr... there is nothing wrong with doing what you are dreaming about as often ex-racers make great cruising boats. When you are shopping for a cruising boat and it carries 200 gallons of fuel you know damn well that its lousy in light air and almost any of the ex-racers will actually sail a decent speed in light air so for someone like you that appreciates a boat that will actually sail the ex-racer is an OK option. No use loading it up with teak cabinets because that just adds weight and takes away from performance. My point is if your going to do this then don't sell yourself on getting back most of your investment (bad word) or even a reasonable chunk of it because it likely won't happen. I did it twice and really enjoyed the boats and I've met other cruisers who have done the same thing. Its a lot of work and it does flush money away at a good rate but you can end up with a great sailing cruiser that brings lots of personal enjoyment.
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Old 06-09-2013, 04:48   #22
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Tough one. I have some friends on an Ericson and they do (and win) a lot of local offshore races, and liveaboard full time.

I think I'd opt for a racer/cruiser but maybe not a full on race boat. There are a lot of devils in the details. Super long drafts really make things tricky. Getting tossed onto a sandbar with a full keel results in a different experience than a fin-bulb keel.

Sampson posts, a more conservative sail plan, a more comfortable interior, generally a bigger engine and more tankage, a better galley: there are a lot of things that a racing boat typically won't have.

If you want to do it, do it. It's not like the boat will break in half or it won't work. It's up there with why I rode a motorcycle and my friend had a pickup. I could weave through traffic, and he could haul a sofa. I got great gas mileage, and on a rainy day he drank his coffee in peace as I tried to not die.

You'll get jealous of cruiser boats, and they'll be jealous of your speed.
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Old 06-09-2013, 05:06   #23
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pirate Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Looking at the pic's I'd go for it... but then I'm one of those weirdo's who's nearly as happy to live aboard and do distances in a 21ftr with 4'6" headroom as I am on a Hunter 37c or a Bene 331..
If you can live with it that's all that matters... unless you've a wife/gf who can't
As to working the sheets... that can be got around... as for strength it highly unlikely as a cruiser you'll be subjecting her to the stresses of racing...
Love the open deck space..
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Old 06-09-2013, 08:31   #24
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

G'Day Campr,

Re your long post concerning possible modifications to the boat:

Frankly, if you envision needing to make such radical changes to the boat in order to make her usable I would give it a miss.

Such things as modifying the keel, completely reshaping the cockpit and removing the endoskeleton are simply too extensive and costly (even as a DIY job, which might be beyond your capabilities) to make it worthwhile. And worse, the outcome of such endeavours is not so certain! I suspect that the tubing structure will be what directly absorbs the rig loads, and that there is no other part of the structure that could do so. Changing to a lifting keel would require extensive changes in the hull and endoskeleton, and is a major engineering exercise in itself. The list is just too damn long!

This does not mean that the concept of cruising in an ex racer is bad, just that this one does not seem a good starting point. There are LOTS of old racers around on the market. We've encountered several of them far from home: Two of the Serendipity 43s that were fierce IOR competitors in the San Francisco offshore fleet in the 80's (Wings and Scarlett O'Hara) are still out cruising AFAIK, and Golden Apples, one of the Fastnet survivors, made it as far as new Zealand a few years ago. So, if the concept still appeals to you, keep looking -- there are racers with more potential as cruisers out there waiting for you!

Good luck

Jim
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:27   #25
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Wings (Fred and Judy) is still going strong (see/click-on Wings).

Our boat, a 1986 First 42, was designed as a fast racer/cruiser by German Frers in the early 1980's for the Admirals Cup competition. The hull is taken from Frers design of Gitana VII, a multi-race winning IOR 2-Ton boat designed and built for Baron Edmond de Rothschild in 1979. One of the first of the First 42's, Lady Be Good, took first in Class 2 of the 1982 Cows-Dinnard "out of the gate" and the yachts have been very competitive in every major ocean competition since then. Our boat, a 1986 model, is very fast and yet a very comfortable cruiser as well. Most importantly (from my view point) is the fact the my wife feels very comfortable aboard (she says its the first boat she been on that lets her feel safe). You can learn more about the early First 42's on one of our sister-ship's web site at Ocean Angel

My only thought about your proposed purchase is that it may be somewhat too utilitarian and even though relativley inexpensive initially, the subsequent investment necessary to get her/it up to cruising fitness may be so great that one might later realize that the purchase of a somewhat more costly racer/cruiser might have been the better alternative.

FWIW...
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:41   #26
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pirate Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Quote:
Originally Posted by campr View Post
Totem has posted a blog-entry about using a racing boat for cruising. What are your experiences on this? I am looking to buy a cruising boat, but racing boats do tend to be faster (and cheaper), but more prone to breaking?

The idea on our trip is to see the world (it happens to be by sail), and have some of the solitude, but it would be nice to do a 30-day passage in 15-20 days.

The article is here: S/V Totem - a family sailing the world: What makes a good cruising boat?
Maybe you should be looking at the Westerly GK Series... they run from 29ft to 35ft... company is no more but there's a good spares facility on the UK S coast...
Heres a link to the GK35...
Westerly GK 35 | Yacht test pictures | Yachting Monthly
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Old 06-09-2013, 11:49   #27
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

@boatman61 what sort of prices do these Westerlies go for?

I'm looking for a boat in the 25-30k region to spend another 20-25k on refit and berthing for 2 years. So in total ~50k for a boat that will take me around the world for ~2 years (or however long it will take us. We will have a buffer and an income of ~ 1000/month during our trip. (Just looked at the cruising on a shoestring thread ).

Best would be at ~40ft at ~10tonnes at 2.5m draught, as those values are the maximum for our local yard (500m from home). The racer falls just outside these values at 45ft, 11 tonnes and 2.7m draught.
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Old 06-09-2013, 12:15   #28
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

My first extended cruise was aboard an Express 37, one in which we had won several PHRF overall championships in the local yacht club. It had minimal tankage, no good way to deal with ground tackle, inadequate storage and no headroom to speak of. When we got home I made three resolutions: (1) give up racing; (2) take up cruising; (3) get a different boat.
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Old 06-09-2013, 12:19   #29
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Delancy View Post
Campr - Very often the problem with ex-racers of this era is the fact that they have been pushed to the limits for too long, or as we might say in the states they have been "rode hard and put away wet!"

Unlike many of the cruising boats I have seen, which spend most of their lives sitting quietly at anchor, many racing boats are used on a weekly schedule, twice a week and often on days it's too windy to go for a pleasure sail. They are sailed by a full crew of big heavy guys who basically go out and beat the hell out of it while sailing around the bouys.

Even a well built boat can only take so much abuse, you may find when you see it in person, that the reason it is so cheap is because it is tired and would require an extensive and costly refit, and while it may have a lot of equipment and sails they may be as used up as the rest of the boat and not worth so much. In the end it might not be worth the trouble.

Regarding the tubing down below, this is often referred to a a "space frame" and is used to more efficiently carry the loads of the rig. In order to have a narrow sheeting angle with the big overlapping headsails of the time period when this boat was built, a narrow shroud base is required. This narrow base requires massive compression loads at the keel and equally massive tension loads at the chainplates to hold the mast up straight.

The "space frame" concept is also applied to architecture which is where you may have seen examples of it in the past. Good luck!

Space frame - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Fantastic post!
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Old 06-09-2013, 13:06   #30
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Re: A racing boat for cruising?

Having owned IOR era racer/cruisers and transported/ raced a number of racer/cruisers and flat out racers I would approach it cautiously. Some of the more moderate racer/cruiser designs of that era are quite comfortable at sea, not as comfortable as a dedicated cruising boat but comfortable enough. Some of the more radical designs were just plain scary under some conditions, any race oriented boat will require more attention all the time to sail than a cruiser so the fatigue factor comes in, it depends on how many crew you plan to sail with.
Most will go to wind quite well and sail well on a beam reach but can be a handful when sailing downwind with a fair size sea behind you, they like to yaw when riding down a wave face, most auto pilots won't deal with it well and it requires hand stearing and staying on top of it. It all depends on the rig size, keel design and rudder area, most were designed for minimal wetted surface so the rudders are usually just large enough for the job but can be overwhelmed in certain circumstances.
It all depends on what end of the design spectrum the particular model aimed at, I've owned one that was quite versatile as an all around boat, great in light air, stable and controllable in heavy air with storm sails and all around a joy to sail, a bit squirrely downind in a big sea but not scary. But, and it's a big but, now that we are looking at farther horizons we've traded in for a cruising boat based on our experience, it's going to be our home for some time so we'd like to feel safe and comfortable. We didn't go for a slug, I've owned one and would never do that again, there are plenty of designs that are more toward the performance cruiser style that have modified full keels with skeg hung rudders that will still offer acceptable performance and a modicum of safety.
Decide how much your willing to rough it and how finicky a boat you can be happy with and go from there, it's all about your trip and what's right for you.
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