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Old 22-03-2009, 02:15   #16
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There are a couple of advantages that I really like about my center cockpit sailboat. The primary one is the large comfortable aft cabin. I also like the excellent engine access, and the centerline sink "island", and the abundant deck space.

Some of the negative attributes seem to be negative in theory only, such as;
1. comfort, I don't notice a significant difference in comfort, not enough to make it an issue.
2. spray, without a dodger it would really suck, but that's equally true of the aft cockpit boats I've sailed. I don't really notice much difference in this regard either. It's like choosing whether to be sprayed with a firehose from thirty feet away or forty feet away, neither one is very fun.
3. steering wheel feel, every boat is different, and the distance from the wheel to the rudder isn't as important as the type and size of rudder/keel and the type of steering system, in my opinion.
4. wasted/useless space, in my opinion, the interior space arrangement of my boat is extremely well thought out and one of the primary advantages of the boat.

The one thing that I prefer on newer aft cockpit boats is a large, comfortable cockpit. It seems like some of the modern aft cockpit production boats have the most comfortable cockpits.

If someone invited me to go sailing, I wouldn't care if the boat was center or aft cockpit. If I was purchasing the boat, I would have to fall in love with it and want to live on it, and which type of cockpit it had wouldn't even be on my list of criteria. Maybe If the purpose of the boat was strictly for racing I would think differently.

"In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice there is."
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Old 22-03-2009, 03:38   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
When you are rolling, the pivot-point is along the length of the boat and it doesn't matter if you're on the bow or on the stern. It matters if you're closer to that pivot point and that's located close to the cabin sole. The higher up, the less comfort. When I'm in an aft-cockpit, my feet are what, 1-2' above the waterline. For center cockpit, it is much higher, my guess is 4-5' at least.
I wasn't talking about rolling, I was tlking about the pitching motion, which is more comfortable the closer you are to the pivot point.
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Old 22-03-2009, 05:22   #18
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We starting our 2nd yr in a 44', cc vessel, and we love it. Ours does not have the stacked wedding cake look, and has plenty of room below, but not cavernous like some of the new cc's. The view from the cockpit while docking is great, though it is harder to get out of the cockpit to grab lines. This forces you to do a better job parking, so you don't have to scamper around like a chipmunk.
I thought the motion was fine, but I moved up from a Hunter34, which was a fairly light boat. Yes, you can get more spray, but I didn't think it was any more than we had in the 34. I have a huge engine room, and a queen size aft cabin with private head/shower. We looked at CC's because my wife cannot sleep in a tube or crevice. It was the CC, or sleeping apart all the time. It was a tough decision
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Old 22-03-2009, 05:40   #19
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We have a Tayana 55 CC and in port and when people visit, which is frequently, the privacy of the aft cabin is great but I still do not think that the loss of cockpit lockers and the steering complications are worth it unless it is a big boat. Even on our 55 we still have to keep the spinnaker in the aft cabin when we have guests because of the lack of storage space!

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Old 22-03-2009, 07:17   #20
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Some of the European boats and a few domestic boats have both a center and aft cockpit. We have both and find that on nice days we sail the boat from the aft cockpit and in foul weather we move to the center and drive it with the remote ap. The motion is a little better in the center cockpit but is best when below in the center of the boat. Hard to tell you are sailing unless you look out the windows. Our bow is open and set up for sail storage since it is and old race boat, very nice to have a dedicated area for sails and bumpers.
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Old 22-03-2009, 09:15   #21
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Quote:
Nick don't you think you are generalising a little too much, you cannot categorise all centre cockpit boats using the Hunter type as a model.
MarinHeiro: the Hunter is the subject here!!! If you guys go on like this, the poor fellow is gonna end up with the Hunter instead of the Benny!! I am sure that I am not alone when I say that the looks of the Hunters make me puke and "wedding cake" is a favorable description ;-) There's only one type I like even less and that's those motorboat-cats with flybridge where they put a mast on. Their booms are an easy 20' above the water. I almost go into seizure when I see those.

For looks: the longer the boat, the more you get away with. Not just center cockpit, also pilothouse, boom height etc.

Yes, I like your boat (looked the design up in my bible ;-) . I like many Bruce Farr designs even those he did for Beneteau (the old First's). But I don't like the later Farr pilothouse designs which I checked out when were selecting our new boat. I couldn't stand up in the salon (I'm 6'6") and their ass is to big for my taste.

Quote:
Yes the higher you go the more movement but on most centre cockpits this height difference is not enough to make it a real issue unless you are trying to win an argument
MeyerMM: I am sure that there are center cockpits around that will do fine. But I don't agree that this is most of them. Also, read up on the many yachts crossing the Atlantic from say Azores to Caribbean: rolling is a major issue for many. Also, I have nothing to gain from "winning an argument" and my posts are not about that at all. I already won, I'm out of the rat race where winning was important. The gain for everyone is the discussion and disagreement because all points of view come up. My posts are spicy maybe but I never insult people; I'm done with corporate style reports!

Quote:
CC steering complication? What about late model aft cockpit boats with twin steering, I think this would be a whole lot more complicated with more to go wrong.
MeyerMM: twin wheels in aft cockpit boats are not complicated at all and use simple cable steering. The only addition is a piece of chain instead of cable where it passes the wheels. Show me a CC boat with cable steering and I show you a boat with sloppy steering and a spiders-web of cables and pulleys. You get hydraulic with CC.

Also: I seem to invoke a big emotional response from you and your posts already include words like battle, ego, rubbishing etc. and there's not a single smiley so I take it you're very serious. See that smiley behind Christian's remark about emotion? Now I smile because I know he's making fun and finally found something me and him don't agree on (I'll get back to you Christian! :-). You must understand that forums are for discussions and there's no discussion when we all sing the same song. Sure, I write about puking when I see some boats etc. and the Hunter owners will not like that and I will take their responses which might ridicule my boat graciously. I hope they notice my smileys and sharpen their pencils, not their claws ;-) If we all stay away from serious personal remarks, we get a great thread that's fun to read and widens our horizons!

Quote:
The main reason I like a center cockpit is the private aft cabin. With guests aboard it gives a lot more space to owner and friends. Also I have not found an aft cockpit boat under 48-50' or so that has a "good" owners cabin that is not the forepeak.
SkipMac: I agree with you that a center cockpit can have positive effects on the interior. I even argued that this is the sole reason for designers to draw these CC's. For your search of aft cockpit boats with good owners cabins in the back under 50': Have a look at the Trintella 47.

About motion: I am seriously confused as some posters write that the CC is very good when pitching while the motion in an aft-cockpit is bad. At the same time however, they write that sleeping aft in the big bedroom is so much better... but that mother of all cabins is where normally the aft cockpit is, so it's a direct contradiction.

When we are anchored or moored, the boat is our house. But when we sail, it's our boat and we don't mind sleeping in the salon, pilothouse or cockpit while underway. And this is by choice because our owners cabin is about midships, with the bed aft of the main mast and a calm oasis even when we do big 2-digit speeds. We find that everything changes when we are passaging and we like the change. There's nothing like sleeping under the stars on open sea with a nice warm breeze imo!

Docking/better view: there's no better view than from an aft cockpit when reversing into a slip. See, there's always the other side of things ;-) We are 64' and while you get the feeling for the bow I agree that it's far away. This is probably the reason we also do maneuvers in reverse when coming alongside a dock.

Quote:
If you look in most of the anchorages around the world, the cruising boats 45' and over seem to be center cockpit, which would say something for the cruising choices.
DelMarrey: I'm not sure about that, I never did that count but you might be right. However, I mostly tend to like things that are not mainstream. I do know that 99% of all production boats are not built for living aboard: they are designed for weekend and vacation sailing or chartering. But this is a cruisers forum and we should realize that all those boats aren't designed with us in mind.

John540: I'm not quoting anything because I have to admit I agree with what you write. But..... you're boat is a nice Hylas 47 and this is a CC that is an example of a CC that is designed very well and even has good looks. I wonder if you have ever been on a Waquiz Centurion 47 (aft cockpit)?? What do you think about that design?

Quote:
I wasn't talking about rolling, I was tlking about the pitching motion, which is more comfortable the closer you are to the pivot point.
Hampus: but the subject you replied upon was rolling and you didn't mention pitching before. In general, pitching is much less a problem than rolling. We can anchor in comfort in 4' seas as long as they are on the nose. When we get those on the beam, we almost capsize, rolling like crazy. I would exaggerate if I write that one would be thrown out of a center cockpit in those conditions... but I am allowed to do that here ;-)

pjbsailing: Yes, I like the Morgan 44's and think they are great to live on. Your cockpit is very luxe and like an additional cabin. I would love a cockpit table like yours (we have none... a weak point on the Sundeers). I even like the comfort at sea and the only thing that bothers me is it's performance. I would still buy one if my budget would limit me to go faster because of it's overall comfort level.
I don't understand that there's no designer that takes the Morgan blueprints and forms a faster hull around it, taking it to 47-50 foot without enlarging the interior. It would be a winner for cruisers but then again, there's probably not enough cruisers around for successful sales.

Moondancer: The CC is the only thing I don't like on a Tayana 55 CC ;-)

Joli: let me guess: you have a Swan ;-) I even like the interior of the bigger ones but I never found I bunk I could stretch in.

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 22-03-2009, 11:00   #22
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More fuel for the fire

G'Day all,

I'll just throw in my biggest complaint about CC designs: Until one gets up to fairly large boats, say 50+ feet, the large aft cabin uses up too damn much of the available hull volume, and often dictates a rather cramped saloon. To me, the saloon and galley are where we spend nearly all our below-decks awake time so dedicating 30 % or so of the volume to a place you go to be unconscious is a poor choice.

And for me ( I do a lot of the cooking on our boat) a galley stuck in the walk-through would be dreadful -- kind of an out-of-sight prison!

The comment about most active cruising boats being CC is certainly not true in the South Pacific... at least if you look in places that are more than a short sail from big population centers. I strongly suspect that the biggest reason for the large numbers of CC boats being on the market is that they are in fact designed for the charter boat trade ( a big customer for the big production boat manufactureres). In that venue, the CC design does make sense, for it certainly does provide more separation of sleeping quarters, and hence appeals to group charterers. IMO, it makes less sense for the typical cruising couple... but of course, opinions are very personal!

And Nick, I think that the Dashew hard dodger/pilot house is one of the best features of his designs, but it takes a pretty long hull to make it work well aesthetically!

Cheers,
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Old 22-03-2009, 11:13   #23
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Jim: agree with all you write.

I just walked C-dock in Shelter Bay Marina in Colon, Panama. Most of the boats here go through the Panama Canal and do real passaging, far away from western civilizations. I counted mono-hulls: 8 were CC and 17 were aft cockpit. Even if I take the one small boat out, there are twice as much aft cockpit boats, average 44 feet I guess. The biggest CC is an Oyster 61 and the smallest a Hunter. The biggest aft cockpit is a 70' ketch and the smallest (not the real small one I saw) is a 36' Island Packet.

I also see a very good looking 47' Dufour with aft cockpit and from it's looks a really big aft cabin. There's much more Dufours than I expected and I like them all.

There are many Beneteau's and only one of them has in-mast furling. The rest all have lazyjacks and stack-pack covers.

The ugliest CC I saw (ouch, this is gonna hurt) is a big 47'ish Island Packet. I never saw a CC Island Packet before. I liked all the aft cockpit designs.

There's actually one without radar. That surprised me.

Edit: I also saw that almost all CC's have boom-vangs.Surprised me too.

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Old 22-03-2009, 12:02   #24
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Nope, not a Swan, a C&C.

We very much like the Daschew designs, many well thought out features. For me though, I've spent to much time racing and needed a boat with better upwind capabilities. (ie: tall rig and a deep keel)

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Joli: let me guess: you have a Swan ;-) I even like the interior of the bigger ones but I never found I bunk I could stretch in.

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 22-03-2009, 13:47   #25
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Originally Posted by Panamajames View Post
I would like some members to explain to me the advantages and disadvantages of each.
To my eye, a cc is somtimes a beatifully designed boat. Other times, not so much. But it has more to do with the individual boat. Now, my boat is a cc, but there is pretty much nothing I could tell you about it that would answer your questions since it's a tri. In other words, much of this is subjective and you need to have your own views not whose ever puts theirs for best.

In other words: you've heard about it, read about it; now be a part of it. Try one so you can make a decision for yourself.
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Old 22-03-2009, 14:34   #26
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Quote:
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SkipMac: I agree with you that a center cockpit can have positive effects on the interior. I even argued that this is the sole reason for designers to draw these CC's. For your search of aft cockpit boats with good owners cabins in the back under 50': Have a look at the Trintella 47.

About motion: I am seriously confused as some posters write that the CC is very good when pitching while the motion in an aft-cockpit is bad. At the same time however, they write that sleeping aft in the big bedroom is so much better... but that mother of all cabins is where normally the aft cockpit is, so it's a direct contradiction.
Hi Nick,

Like the comments and completely agree on your position on discussions vs arguments. I love discussing boats in all their different incarnations and can appreciate the good and bad points of all designs and rigs (and don't get emotional about it). I tried one time to design my perfect boat and decided that such a thing does not exist. All designs are compromises.

I am familiar with the Trintella but was looking for a boat in the 39-43' range with an aft cabin aft cockpit. If I had the budget there are plenty of bigger boats that I would love, aft cabin and aft cockpit. However having owned sailboats from 30 to 65' I think a length in the low forties is a comfortable size for me shorthanded. Since my significant other is 5'4" and 100 lbs soaking wet and a somewhat reluctant sailor I am about one and a half handing when I sail. Of course if I do win the lottery or my 101K grows back to a 401K in the next year I might try 1.5 handing something a little larger.

On steering, I had a 33' CC racer/cruiser made in Finland that had Teleflex cable steering, no slop in the system and great feel to the helm. Had a skeg hung rudder but the bottom 10-12" extended below the skeg (breakaway design for just in case) and was balanced so had a light helm as well. Wonder why more boats don't use Teleflex systems? No sheaves to jam, no long exposed cables to foul, and easy to route.
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Old 22-03-2009, 14:49   #27
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The "Never Ending Story/Question"...

James,

We've lived on, delivered, repaired, loved and hated both cockpit designs.

The CC vs Aft cockpit has and will always be a personel preference and a compromise.

When you talk to alot of sailors and have them list and weigh the pros and cons, the list will be in balance.

The typical cruiser we traveled with, were like us, living aboard, were anchored more often than voyaging and valued their comfort very highly.

The center cockpits split interiors, gave folks some personnal private space and preserved families and marriages.
The aft cockpit's larger center space/salon gave some folks room to 'spread' out.

To each their own......

When I'm teaching or coaching folks, this question always comes up and we discuss all the benefits of each.
I always tell them that before they buy ....

Charter ..... _ /) ~~~ Try both and spend 1 full week on each.

It's money well spent and the best way to find what works best for their cruising style.

fred
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Old 22-03-2009, 15:53   #28
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Pros and cons...

I've compared Boracay (steel aft cockpit) with the fibreglass centre cockpit of another Forum member's Roberts Offshore 44 and the following comments come to mind.

Aft cockpit pros:-
The main salon/galley/work area on Boracay is noticeably larger. Forward cabin and aft cabin look to have about equal comfort.
Boarding from the stern is easier.
Davits and dinghy are easier to mange.
Mainsail traveller, sheet and boom are better located.
Items like gas bottles, outboard mounts, safety equipment are easier to access. A stern arch is easier to arrange.

Centre cockpit pros:-
Cockpit areas are of heavy construction so the centre cockpit boat is going to have better weight distribution. Unadjusted aft cockpits may be down at the stern.
Forward visibility of close objects is better. I have to stand on the raised aft hatch to get a view when picking up a mooring.
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Old 22-03-2009, 16:24   #29
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. To me, the saloon and galley are where we spend nearly all our below-decks awake time so dedicating 30 % or so of the volume to a place you go to be unconscious is a poor choice.
Saloon is such an old word...We now go to BARS to be unconscious!

Oh, and my first boat was a center cockpit too...it was a Sunfish!
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Old 22-03-2009, 16:27   #30
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I've always liked the secure feeling of the CC when at sea, and the motion, although slightly higher, is more centered in the boat. You also usually get a bit of an engine room which is a big plus.. I would only get one that has a walk through to get back there. The down side is that you are well aft and have trouble hearing what's going on with the anchor etc. in the middle of the night.
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