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Old 04-04-2014, 08:32   #106
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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Originally Posted by Blue Crab View Post
Oooooooooh, you're talking about sailing the boat in a seamanlike manner, not flaking yer sails while motoring in an anchorage, or leaving yer fenders overboard all the time cuz it gets dicey positioning them while approaching a dock (when and if you dare approach the dock) and all the other silly little things like breaking a forestay underway and not losing the rig ... that kind o thing. I think that's different than driving the boat alone on a nice day with BoatUS on speed dial and a fat wallet.

Even geriatric old farts can singlehand large boats; hell, teenybopper girls can do it but they are real sailors, few and far between.
I was talking a good size sailboat to singlehand for everything you MIGHT consider doing from daysailing, to crossing the lower Chesapeake Bay when the wind is up, to getting a wild hair and sailing to Bermuda or some other offshore locale.

40' plus just seems a little large for one person to be efficient on be it an old fart, teenybopper girl, or popeye. (the sailor man)
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Old 04-04-2014, 08:40   #107
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

I sailed a home designed 26 footer for 20 years, usually single handed. I was uncerned docking her in any weather I was willing to sail in. A fin keel and large spade rudder made her a breeze to operate. Not so much with my very old-fashioned Ingrid. She is a bear in the marina....But under sail a dream. It is necessary to shorten sail early and in all things plan ahead. She is not the easiest vessel to single hand but I consider it a challenge. It does mean she stays at the dock in conditions when she could be used but the envelope in slowly expanding. I don't sail for convenience. I sail for the thrill of it. It works for me.
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:12   #108
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

"interesting" how insulting some can be just because other people apparently can and do sail a boat bigger than what others are willing to believe possible
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:26   #109
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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"interesting" how insulting some can be just because other people apparently can and do sail a boat bigger than what others are willing to believe possible
No one has said it isn't possible.

Just getting recommendations on a good size boat for single handing. As I said before most times you can just raise and lower sails by hand on a smaller boat. No winches involved which gives you better control over the boat.

You can swing your bow off the wind by just pulling the jib out quickly by hand in a tight spot if you are stopped or going very slowly near other boats. (or use the main to swing it head to wind) I've noticed larger boats have bow thrusters for this.

Maybe if you consider what you can do on a sunfish or laser you can see the point better. It's simply easier to handle a smaller boat.

Now at what length does it get sorta tough.
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:32   #110
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pirate Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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Originally Posted by thomm225 View Post
I was talking a good size sailboat to singlehand for everything you MIGHT consider doing from daysailing, to crossing the lower Chesapeake Bay when the wind is up, to getting a wild hair and sailing to Bermuda or some other offshore locale.

40' plus just seems a little large for one person to be efficient on be it an old fart, teenybopper girl, or popeye. (the sailor man)
Correcto. Me too. Great minds think alike.

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Originally Posted by IdoraKeeper View Post
I sailed a home designed 26 footer for 20 years, usually single handed. I was uncerned docking her in any weather I was willing to sail in. A fin keel and large spade rudder made her a breeze to operate. Not so much with my very old-fashioned Ingrid. She is a bear in the marina....But under sail a dream. It is necessary to shorten sail early and in all things plan ahead. She is not the easiest vessel to single hand but I consider it a challenge. It does mean she stays at the dock in conditions when she could be used but the envelope in slowly expanding. I don't sail for convenience. I sail for the thrill of it. It works for me.
The résumé of a real sailor. A tip o the Tilley to ya! It's not about who has the longest boom. We all do what we can, as well as we can with whatever we can muster.

This is an old and tired argument. As boring and obvious today as it will be tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow:

Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.
Mack & Beth

BC out.
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:34   #111
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

interesting topic. I handle vessels differently in my middle years as I did in my youth. However, Im sure most of COULD handle 40 or 50 footers single handedly, if we had to, but do we/I WANT to?

I can only speak for me, as you guys will answer for yourself. Im currently looking for a Catamaran to poodle around in and live on for a while, but it applies to monos as well...and I have determined to follow one maxim and that is to find the smallest that I need for my purposes. Why?

  • I need to feel totally in control of the vessel for all sail and motor systems IN AN EMERGENCY.
  • I need to be able to sort out a problem from the cockpit as it happens without abandoning steerage.
  • If I lose winches, I would like to pull a sail by hand.
  • I prefer smaller masts and less sail area for manageability.
  • I like to be in control of a vessel during docking and see all corners if possible.
  • I like the smaller output from the wallet.
  • I like less to clean.
  • This is about 36 foot MAX for me. And dont forget its a catamaran.
Some of you guys have large vessels and sail them comfortably and efficiently and safely. I applaud that. My comments in no way reflect an attitude towards your doing it.

I cant do it comfortably. Me, myself and I would be crapping blue lights in bad weather and sail handling. Ive had a 42 foot motor vessel and gone out on my own many times, 200 miles off shore just fishing in Florida.. no sails, no hassles, just fill the gas tanks and off we go........ but sailing? not for this boy, not in a huge (40ft +) sailer. Im not a mouse but I do like cheese......... and I lack the experience and thus the confidence to do it comfortably.

Every time I do my charts for navigation, I have to stop and think at every input, have I applied the windage correctly, have I checked tidal flow, Did I get the right magnetic deviation...? When it comes to sail angle, I check and cross check, when I read a GPS or Radar, I double check to be sure.
The last thing on top of this that I need is 1500 foot of sail on a 53 footer in bad weather requiring my attention by going forward on my own and getting tired doing the walk!

So........ tipping my hat at your skills gentlemen and ladies of the sea... Im staying small. If I had a crew....... now then....... all bids are off and a large one is coming up.
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:36   #112
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

I hate that play.
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:37   #113
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

A beautiful boat for a single hander is the 35ft Hinckley Pilot in sloop or Yawl. Found reasonably for anywhere 50k to 100k. Sails very well. Will also handle a beating for short jaunts.
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Old 04-04-2014, 10:03   #114
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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...there's little doubt that modern systems, most particularly reliable engines, have allowed singlehanders to operate ever-larger boats fairly safely when all goes well...
You're right, but not so much engines as the other modern systems: autopilot, roller furling, roller reefing, self-tailing power winches, ...
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Old 04-04-2014, 10:11   #115
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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You're right, but not so much engines as the other modern systems: autopilot, roller furling, roller reefing, self-tailing power winches, ...

not really all that "modern" are they
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Old 04-04-2014, 11:20   #116
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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Even geriatric old farts can singlehand large boats; hell, teenybopper girls can do it
Looks like the singlehander teenybopper girls go with an S & S 34.

Come to think of it, that's not a bad size sailboat for any singlehander.

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Old 04-04-2014, 11:38   #117
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

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A beautiful boat for a single hander is the 35ft Hinckley Pilot in sloop or Yawl. Found reasonably for anywhere 50k to 100k. Sails very well. Will also handle a beating for short jaunts.
0
Yes beautiful and great boats, but also known as being quite tender. Not necessarily the best attribute for singlehanding.
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Old 04-04-2014, 15:54   #118
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

My boom was once really long, but I found that dangerous and shortened it. Freud would have a heyday.
I still like 40 feet for open ocean work. But it is definitely a lot of work solo. And a lot of money.
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Old 05-04-2014, 18:30   #119
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

I sail a 34' sea sprite cutter mostly by myself. I'm 67. I found the two best aids are a beefy autopilot with remote you clip onto your belt. This is wonderful for pulling up the anchor in a blow and just sitting on the bow (yes even in the ICW), and a power windlass with switch in the cockpit and at the bow. But it can be done without these aids. Go for it!
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Old 06-04-2014, 18:25   #120
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Re: Best Size Sailboat For Singlehander

I have a Cavalier 32 that I seem to only singlehand (can you believe the wife and kids are uninterested??). When I was rerigging I wanted to bring all the lines to the cockpit, but my beautiful timber headlining would have been destroyed, so I left the reefing and main halyard at the mast. I just pop on the wheel pilot to go forward and raise, lower and reef. I haven't had a problem yet, but maybe that problem will leave me alone, bobbing, watching my beautiful yacht sail off into the sunset. Stay clipped in.
My boat still gives me nightmares going in and out of marinas, but it's only pride that will get hurt. Have fun guys. Cya
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