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Old 02-07-2014, 18:29   #121
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
I'm a bit confused here: folks are calling this the "stiffest boat" ever sailed on, and then talking about sailing at 30 degrees of heel.

A stiff boat, IMO does not sail on its ear like that. We owned a Yankee 30 years ago that sailed at similar heel angles, and that was the main reason we sold her. After one SF Hawaii SF cruise, we found that long passages in such a boat were devastatingly fatiguing.

Is this a semantic problem here, or are the posters not understanding what a stiff boat is like?

Jim
Yeah, I didn't quite get that either, or maybe I misread it. At 30 degrees I call that "sailing on your lips".
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Old 02-07-2014, 19:25   #122
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Well, the US CDC apparently did some weighing and measuring in 2005 and found the average full-grown male to be 5'9" and female 5'4" (age 19) so if 6'3" of headroom isn't enough to satisfy some incredibly large percentage of the world market...

Plastic surgery should correct the excessive height of the rest.
Not really sure what this post is supposed to mean. If you're 5'9", don't waste your money on a 38' foot boat when a 26' will do perfectly well.

I'm a big believer in sailing the smallest boat that you can be comfortable on, which is why I bought the 38'. It's the smallest boat that provides standing headroom for me in the salon.
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Old 02-07-2014, 19:56   #123
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Re: Beneteau 38

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So in "Force 5" conditions you regularly see speeds 10% higher than hull speed? is that surfing? In that video it doesn't look like there are enough waves to get a consistent surf going, so how are you breaking the hullspeed/lawsofphysics barrier?
Look at the video of the instrumentation. It shows 25 knot winds, 9 to 10 knots COG via GPS. The instruments don't show any quotation marks. The boat was 25% over the typical definition of hull speed, which is 1.4 times the square root of waterline length. We weren't breaking the laws of physics, we were breaking the conventional definition of hull speed. Conventions are much easier to break than laws of physics, after all, but don't confuse the two.[/quote]

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I would highly suggest putting in a ton of handholds on the cabin ceiling. Living at even a 20 degree heel for days on ends will reinforce the need to grab onto something overhead, when you're trying to move, or put on foulies, or do just about anything.
I've spent four years of my life living at sea, underway. I'm well acquainted with the exhaustion that comes from extreme heel, and looking forward to the constant isometric workout that this boat will provide. I prefer not to hit my head on handholds when there's always something within easy reach.

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Very impressive that you haven't seen any water in the cockpit yet, that's awesome for a cruising boat. Crew fatigue goes down quickly when you're getting water in the face consistently (in my experience, not trying to preach). What's the biggest sea state you've seen yet? I know you said you've been out in Force 6, but were there corresponding waves?
We've been out in 25 knot winds, but without corresponding waves so you are correct; the boat is untested in serious waves. San Diego bay is a sheltered harbor. Frankly it's perfect conditions for this boat. We'll be out in the San Pedro channel in 2500' of unsheltered water in a few weeks, and I will report then. Though even that rarely provides much beyond 8' rollers in terms of waves to deal with.

Consider that the beaminess in a modern cruising boat puts the companionway hatch 6' away from the rails. If the boat were laid over 90 degrees, the companionway hatch would float above the waterline. That's what a beamy ultralight displacement gives you for free.

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I think wide, fast boats are sweet, and if I ever bought a long distance cruiser I would go for something with as much power as I could manage, and the Oceanis 38 hull shape definitely looks like it has a bunch of power, but I just don't like some of the details, some aspects of the sailplan, and the deck layout.
I was not convinced of the sailplan myself, but the sailing of it has turned me around a bit. The mast is well aft of typical, making a large jib just a 105%. It's easy to tack. The mainsail, especially the RF variant, is very small to my eye, and the boom short. But the balance turns out to be exceptional, which is surprising for a CLR and CE so far aft. My worry was that there simply wasn't enough canvas to move the boat, but she accelerates quickly in any wind, but most especially once she gets up on the chines.
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Old 02-07-2014, 19:59   #124
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Because I'm interested in new boats and I like expressing my opinions on things that I'm interested in.
This is probably the best justification for a forum post I've ever read. At least, it's the most self-aware.
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Old 02-07-2014, 20:06   #125
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
I'm a bit confused here: folks are calling this the "stiffest boat" ever sailed on, and then talking about sailing at 30 degrees of heel.

A stiff boat, IMO does not sail on its ear like that. We owned a Yankee 30 years ago that sailed at similar heel angles, and that was the main reason we sold her. After one SF Hawaii SF cruise, we found that long passages in such a boat were devastatingly fatiguing.

Is this a semantic problem here, or are the posters not understanding what a stiff boat is like?

Jim
It's sort of a semantic problem. "stiff" isn't really the right word, but it's the word people use for this.

Firstly, the boat doesn't routinely sail on a 30 degree heel, the typical heel is about 20 degrees. Actually you can do the math on that chine and see exactly what it is, because what the boat does is immediately move to that sheen as the level hull.

Unlike a classic boat, she does not "rock" or move lightly between heels. She's squat on her hull until about ten knots, then she switches to be flat on that chine at about 20 degrees in a smooth but distinct motion. She stays there until you really blow her over and frankly fail to reef. Any reefing at all and she's happy to stay on that chine. But if you want to bury the rail, she'll let you after some hesitation.

Frankly that move, from 20 degrees to 30+, is sudden and rapid even in rather steady winds. It'll catch you off-guard, and in the video I posted above you see Barrett being caught by it and stumbling to stay in the cockpit.

So yes, "stiff" isn't the word. But I don't know what the word to describe a boat that changes in discrete steps between heel angles is. It's not something I've experienced before, and I apologize for any confusion in referring to it as stiff.

All I know is I like it.
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Old 03-07-2014, 06:57   #126
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by mstrebe View Post
Look at the video of the instrumentation. It shows 25 knot winds, 9 to 10 knots COG via GPS. The instruments don't show any quotation marks. The boat was 25% over the typical definition of hull speed, which is 1.4 times the square root of waterline length. We weren't breaking the laws of physics, we were breaking the conventional definition of hull speed. Conventions are much easier to break than laws of physics, after all, but don't confuse the two.
Well to be accurate hull speed is 1.34 times the square root of waterline length. LWL is 36.5', which would put theoretical hull speed at 8.1 knots (rounded, of course). I've never heard of a boat breaking hull speed in displacement mode. Since the GPS was reading COG, there could have been a current advantage? Or maybe the chine comes into play and extends your apparent waterline? Except looking at pictures of the hull shape I don't see how that would happen. I just can't figure out how that's possible.

I've always thought that twin wheels were a waste of money, space, and complexity but looking more closely at the pictures it seems like they're a necessity on a boat that carries it's max beam so far aft. A single wheel would have to be huge in order for the helm to sit somewhere he could both drive and look at the jib telltales.
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Old 03-07-2014, 07:28   #127
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Re: Beneteau 38

San Diego bay isn't nearly that tidally affected; it may have a current of one knot either direction at extreme tides, and I don't know what the speed was at the time, but it wouldn't have accounted for the boat's speed.

The fallacy is that there is a fixed efficiency ratio for displacement. The 1.34 factor was derived by early scientific naval architects as a general purpose rule of thumb from averages taken of classic hulls. It sums all the drag efficiencies of a classic keelboat, and because it's a root function, errors and inaccuracies are reduced rather than increased, which means it's usually not that far off.

It is not precisely correct in the case of any specific hull and certainly not to two decimal places, but it is a very good estimator of what any non-planing hull's maximum speed under typical sail forces will be, beyond which significant drag caused by the generation of a bow wave dominates. We've all accepted for some time that it's not correct for catamarans and trimarans because their drag forces are dramatically different, and that it doesn't apply at all to planing hulls.

But hull speed ratio is different for every hull and greater for higher displacement hulls: What it's really measuring is how much water the boat has to move. An ultralight that can carry its sails effectively will have a higher hull speed than the rule of thumb would indicate, and with the reduced wetted area allowed by the chine, it's lower still.

For this boat, it's more like 1.6.


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Old 03-07-2014, 07:37   #128
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Re: Beneteau 38

And I concur about twin wheels, but they are mandatory on a boat this wide. It is problematic having to steer from the low-side while sheeting in the jib and then having to hike up to the high side though. The dealer taught me how to loose the slack jib sheet from across the cockpit while tacking, a necessary maneuver due to beam as well.

There's a First docked across from me with a single centerline wheel about five feet across, with a recessed well in the cockpit to accommodate it. Can't use the cockpit for anything else.

I suppose there's some redundancy in case of a cable break, but the boat comes with an emergency tiller as well. Coming from a 26 footer whose cockpit is dominated by the helm and wheel, I do appreciate the openness of the cockpit.


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Old 03-07-2014, 07:40   #129
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Re: Beneteau 38

Have you flown the chute yet? I've heard that assym furlers can have issues if the tension on them isn't perfect, so I'll be interested to hear how that works.

Have they talked about having a code zero type sail for the boat? Most performance cruisers these days seem to have an option for one.
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Old 03-07-2014, 08:39   #130
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Beneteau 38

This is one of the best threads in this forum. Equal parts analysis based on experience and genuine curiosity. No flaky responses, mutually respectful. Most important to me is that it's about a boat in my top pick list. Thanks to all contributors especially mstrebe for sharing your experience with all of us. Having been on your boat, she is ultra sweet.


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Old 03-07-2014, 11:19   #131
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Re: Beneteau 38

34 gal of fuel and 90 gal of water do not meet my definition of a cruising vessel.

I'll be impressed with the speed when you can make those speeds in 25kts and 5-7 foot seas.
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Old 03-07-2014, 11:26   #132
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Re: Beneteau 38

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34 gal of fuel and 90 gal of water do not meet my definition of a cruising vessel.

I'll be impressed with the speed when you can make those speeds in 25kts and 5-7 foot seas.
I don't know... my Hans Christian only had 100 gal water, and the other 38 model only 90. Modern cruisers need a watermaker not hugh water storage. The diesel capacity is a little small though, but then it depends on if you're rounding the world or just cruising the Caribe. I doubt I ever used more than 50 gals before I topped up anyway.
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Old 03-07-2014, 11:53   #133
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Re: Beneteau 38

That is why I said "my" definition. I won't skimp on water use, or generator and AC. I'm sure it is "possible" to circumnavigate without using any fuel and minimal water tankage, but not for me. I don't want to depend of the water maker to compensate for small capacity water tanks.

Mid Atlantic with 4 people and without a working watermaker and 30 gal of water does not sound like my idea of fun.

Just my opinion. YMMV
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Old 03-07-2014, 18:20   #134
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by who_cares View Post
Have you flown the chute yet? I've heard that assym furlers can have issues if the tension on them isn't perfect, so I'll be interested to hear how that works.

Have they talked about having a code zero type sail for the boat? Most performance cruisers these days seem to have an option for one.
My boat came with the spinnaker rigging, but not the chute itself. I'm having one made but don't expect to have it before the end of august.

There's a stock Code 0 from Beneteau that can be ordered with the boat, on roller furler.
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Old 03-07-2014, 18:30   #135
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Re: Beneteau 38

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34 gal of fuel and 90 gal of water do not meet my definition of a cruising vessel.
Nor mine. When we outfit for cruising (which won't be until next summer at the earliest due to my work schedule) we will be adding an aft arch with 600 watts of solar and a wind turbine to support a 40GPH watermaker and a small emergency 1.5GPH watermaker that can be manually operated if necessary. That'll eliminate any concerns about water tankage. It'll also have rod holders so we can drag line fish.

I'm looking at options for increasing the diesel tankage as well, although we tend to use very little fuel generally, and 600 watts of solar capacity will eliminate the need for a generator. In our current boat it took 18 months to go through 24 gallons of fuel, because we actually sail our sailboat. When the sun isn't out the wind will be blowing for the turbine. Our goal with the cruising mods is to be completely self sufficient.

My brother-in-law has converted his Ranger 33 to electric power, and that has worked pretty well for him. With enough solar to keep the batteries charged, I'm considering that as well although his range is limited to marina and restricted maneuvering channels only.

These things are options on all boats, and easily added by the owner. The point of the Oceanis 38 is to be custom tailored to the needs of the owner without having to produce an entirely different boat. At half the price of the 48' with nearly as much usable space, there's a lot of room for customization.

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I'll be impressed with the speed when you can make those speeds in 25kts and 5-7 foot seas.
It's a 38' sailboat. Show me a <40' sailboat that does that in 6 foot seas at this size, and I too will be very impressed.
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