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Old 12-03-2019, 06:04   #61
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Re: Center Cockpit Sailboat Safety

I rest my case your honour.

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Old 13-03-2019, 18:56   #62
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Re: Center Cockpit Sailboat Safety

Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Every time these cc v ac threads pop up I eventually post the following thoughts, and the cc fans poo-poo them...

I don't see the advantage of devoting some 35% of the available volume in a hull to a room where you spend ~8 hours a day... asleep. Invariably, the big aft cabin and engine room under the cockpit eat up more than their fair share of space, usually at the expense of the saloon... the place wher you spend the greater part of your below decks time... and the galley, where sustenance is prepared. I know that I like some room to wave my arms when cooking, some counter space to spread stuff out on, and yes, to still have eye contact with the folks settin' around waiting for food.

And then, there is the much lauded island queen bunk... great when at anchor or in a marina, lousy at sea.

And then there is the excessive freeboard needed to afford the standup passage aft... ugly and lots of windage. Oh... don't forget the enclosure that a great many cc boats erect over that cockpit... more windage, difficult access in many cases, and interfering with sail control and viewing.

In very large yachts, say 55+ feet perhaps, many of my gripes disappear, and the cc (usually not really in the center, but not clear aft) configuration begins to look better to me, but especially in <40 foot hulls, the cc is a joke IMO.

A final comment: I wonder if the big aft cabin's appeal is that it is more like a household bedroom? Some folks seem to want their yacht to be just like their home digs in as many ways as possible, others of us actually like things to be "boaty" instead. Different strokes...

I've seen some pretty condo-looking enclosures too but in either a center or aft cockpit boat I need a bimini top overhead to keep the sun off. I always wear a hat anyway but any exposed skin gets sunburned and a bimini for shade helps. Yes, it makes me less aware of what my main is doing but it's a sacrifice my dermatologist tells me I must make. Seeing him every 6 months is often enough! But I seem to go years between putting up the sides or back on my enclosure so they still look like new while my bimini top is decidedly tired looking and in need of being replaced soon.

An aft island queen is, as you say, more like a household bedroom, but for some of us, that's what it takes to lure our favorite member of the fairer sex into moving aboard with us. Climbing over their pillow to go pee in the middle of the night is a big turn off for some people. If you're confronted with having to do that cost/benefit calculation of "boaty-ness" alone VS island queen not alone, I think I can guess which you'd choose. I realize that you're one very fortunate skipper to have been blessed by sailing under the flag of an Admiral who seemingly enjoys the "boaty-ness" side of the equation as much as you do, but IF she didn't.....? Just sayin, that's part of the equation for some of us. I do agree that the island queen, even with lee clothes rigged, is not much good at sea, but I've always found that after the first day I'm usually tired enough to sleep with occasional movement nearby so I rig lee clothes on both main saloon settees with my feet facing forward and I'm located right in the center of the boat near the waterline so motion is minimal and when off watch I sleep like a baby.

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Old 18-03-2019, 17:52   #63
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Re: Center Cockpit Sailboat Safety

I would say it is a bit less safe leaning over the transom of a CC than an AC. Mine has hydraulic steering which is difficult to "feel". I don't think I have as much forward deck space as an equivalent length AC sloop. Other than that, I can't think of any difference.

Sadly and happily I fell in love with my HR35 CC without consulting the sages... She is a bit small. I'd say the Saloon is equivalent to that of a 30 ft Catalina. Free-board isn't too high, but the price is a small aft coffin cabin and a small cockpit (engine underneath) which accommodates only four comfortably. My Catalina 22 had a much larger cockpit. The hard windscreen and dodger sheds green water and full enclosure canvas turns the cockpit into a nice sun-room. I like the large lazarettes abeam the engine compartment, there's no pass-thru. The traveler and emergency tiller are aft the cockpit, but within easy reach of the wheel. It's a great boat for solo or a couple, probably not someone with children.
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Old 20-04-2019, 22:01   #64
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Re: Center Cockpit Sailboat Safety

Now that we have more cruising miles on our CC Cheoy Lee 47 and a couple games under the keel I'm quite happy with the boat.
No issues with wetness other than the usual spray and water in the face issues in heavy weather, but see no difference from an aft cockpit.
Never had any wet cockpit issues and do love the spacious interior.
My only complaint, if you want to call it that, is the height of the mainsail from the deck that requires a bit of a stretch to attach the halyard. To help drop the sail I've attached a downhaul which allows me to pull the headboard down from deck level.
Otherwise the cockpit is dry, the motion is good when going upwind (you get less pronounced rocking ng since your further forward) and the walk to the mast is shorter.
But still, I wouldn't want to have a cc shorter than 44 feet. Too many design compromises. Better to go aft cockpit in that case.
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Old 20-04-2019, 22:06   #65
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Re: Center Cockpit Sailboat Safety

We use a down haul for the main as well. I set up a block and run it back to the cockpit. Care must be taken to keep all slack out of the down haul. Once, when we realy needed the main down quickly, the line got wrapped around the steaming light on the front of the mast.
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Old 20-04-2019, 22:59   #66
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Re: Center Cockpit Sailboat Safety

Hello, LF4.

The smallest boat we have known with parents and 2 children aboard was a Cal 25. That's feet, not meters! It was an aft cockpit, and all the children were conceived on board, they said. It circumnavigated. They (as far as I know) never were hip deep in water, nor have I been, though were pooped twice in our previous boat. Not a big deal, the water ran out the drains just like it's supposed to. The reason you look for a substantial bridge deck is so that water won't run from the cockkpit to below decks. That can sink you.

Privacy is an issue you teach your kids. Just like at home, there are times when they have to knock. Boats are essentially very public, and an after cabin doesn't change that. Sound travels easily. Privacy is an illusion you all learn how to give each other.

This boat is an aft cockpit sloop with a solent rig. She has two cabins aft, and the v-berth forward. The rest is saloon cum galley, with the engine underneath the galley's midline "counter," or bench. The latter is hinged to give close to 360 deg access to the engine. The smallest boat I know of that has 3 cabins are the old Joe Adams designed Nought 40's. Don't know if you can work with a 2 cabin layout or need three, but those young ones will attain adult size.....On the other hand humans raise children in one room huts, somehow.

In the tropics, good ventilation is essential for being able to sleep, and all bunks should have a fan that will help to dry their perspiration. The lack of ventilation in some aft cabins can be addressed by adding small hatches and opening ports, along with installing fans. It's really important to remember all boats are compromises.

LF4, all boats are compromises. One thing we've had to accommodate to is that I get seasick whenever the motion is too jerky. For me, an amidships sea berth is really essential to be able to sleep when it is rough. If you look at El Pinguino's interior pictures, you'll see there 2 midships sea berths, one port and one starboard. Those are important features to this "admiral".

Until you've got some ocean miles under your keel, it is hard to know what you'll want, because your experience will inform your future choices.

Our boat has wide, moderately clear side decks. There are a lot of lines about, mostly run through organizers, and off to the side, except for the genoa and staysail sheets. Wide, clear decks are easier to get around on than slender ones. Need to be wide enough to stand with your feet braced to keep you standing when the boat heels.

Feel free to ask more specific questions as they arise, and I would agree that there is little to choose safety-wise, between a CC and an aft cockpit. An enclosed CC will diminish windward performance, and also for an aft cockpit. Adding windage does that. It also means you won't be able to sail as close to the wind as without the enclosure. It is a compromise some are willing to make. But safety wise, you're okay, and you should get what you are drawn to.

You are a lucky guy to have a good lady wife who wants (all by herself) to go sailing: it puts you and her right up among cruising sailors, where often the wife doesn't really want to be there. She's lucky, too, to have you, who also wants to cruise. It's a blessing, something to feel grateful for.


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