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Old 19-06-2015, 13:40   #31
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Re: Choice for single handed?

I single hand a 38' Pearson. Only difficulty is docking. Auto pilot does help a lot on any size boat.


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Old 19-06-2015, 14:47   #32
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Re: Choice for single handed?

Hi Mike

I am 73 and have single handed for years. My boat is heavy a 50 foot yawl built in 1978. I have her rigged so that everything can be done from the cockpit: roller furling on headsail, in-mast roller furling on main & mizzen. These are operated by toggle switches in the cockpit. Electric sheet winches are also controlled from the cockpit. The secrets to single-handing are to know where you are at all times (GPS/Radar plotter) and pay close attention to the weather. If anything looks suspicious shorten sail quickly. I believe that larger heavier boats are better adapted to single-handers because movement in a seaway is slower and more gentle that in a smaller lighter boat (important should you need to go up on deck to deal with something). Always wear a life-jacket (I admit it - sometimes I don't). Docking with a larger/heavier boat is also simpler, the boat is not as touchy with wind and sea. To be honest, I prefer my own company at sea over the sometimes mindless chatter of others who may not appreciate the experience as much as you do.

Here's a link to a little movie I made sailing from Palma Mallorca to Cabrera:



Best regards

Patrick
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Old 19-06-2015, 19:16   #33
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Re: Choice for single handed?

You're probably aware of this but Classic Boat always has a long list of really cool boats for sale.

Buy a boat | Types | Classic Boat Magazine
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Old 20-06-2015, 18:47   #34
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Re: Choice for single handed?

I single hand lots including multi day voyages. I would suggest any of the folkboat derivatives up to 30ft as suitable. As others have said it is the setup rather than the boat but' you do want something that is no to skittish. A lightweight fin keeler can be a bit of a handful. A goo test is to try her on a reach and see if you can leave the helm long enough to go betow and check the chart without loosing you course. If so she is stable enough. A good autopilot is also essential. Make sure you fit, and use, jack stays, unlike the Drascome you will have to work the foredeck and falling overboard under autopilot sucks.Keep it simple is the key. The other thing is grouping controls. Make sure you can go about without running all over the place and that you can reef from one location, does not matter if it is from the mast or the cockpit but having to go back and forth is not good.
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Old 20-06-2015, 22:36   #35
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Re: Choice for single handed?

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I single hand lots including multi day voyages. I would suggest any of the folkboat derivatives up to 30ft as suitable. As others have said it is the setup rather than the boat but' you do want something that is no to skittish. A lightweight fin keeler can be a bit of a handful. A goo test is to try her on a reach and see if you can leave the helm long enough to go betow and check the chart without loosing you course. If so she is stable enough. A good autopilot is also essential.
I've got a 26' ultralight daggerboard dual rudder and a 38' fin keel dual rudder and find this comment to be quite true. The 26' is definitely too skittish to even take hands off the wheel or eyes off the heading.

If you intend to routinely single-hand and don't want to rely on an autopilot, the recommendation to go with a heavier full-keel tiller is a good one. My former 32' Columbia Sabre was much easier to single-hand than either of my "modern" boats, and she was just as fast. That boat was so easy to sail that it gave me an inflated opinion of how good a sailor I was.

The 38' is a bit nervous but will maintain heading in calm seas long enough to pop below to get something, but not long enough for a head break in typical conditions.

The solution for both is an autopilot. The 26' cannot be singlehanded without an autopilot, it's simply too nervous. It's hard to even hoist the mainsail with the halyard led aft its so nervous.

On both boats I autopilot constantly when I single hand and am only on the helm wheel when the sails have been furled for docking. I spend my time trimming, watching, and relaxing when single-handing.

The 26' has a Raymarine EV-1 which is so good with its 9-axis sensor that it will actually smooth the rolling of the boat over wakes and beam seas. It's pretty incredible and does a better job than I can do. The 38' has a B&G Simrad AP24 auto-helm that solid but not nearly as impressive as the Raymarine and does not do sea smoothing.

Amp-draw for both is minor enough (2 amps for the 26' and 4 amps for the 38') that the occasional motor use of docking keeps up. Blew a fuse for the alternator once and still ran the Simrad for four days straight until I could get another fuse, figuring I'd take over when the 3 house batteries gave up, but they never did. In both cases a moderate solar panel would be able to keep up with their draw.
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Old 20-06-2015, 22:52   #36
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Re: Choice for single handed?

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Originally Posted by Greggegner View Post
I single hand a 38' Pearson. Only difficulty is docking. Auto pilot does help a lot on any size boat.


Greg S/V Sweet Dreams
Pearson P385 out of Racine Wisconsin
I don't have much trouble single-handed docking using the trick of a single dockline running from the bow cleats to the stern cleats, 2X the length of the boat.

I tie a figure-8 loop knot in both ends of a rope that is about 2X the length of the boat, finishing it with half hitches, to make a double-ended dock line. Cleat those loops to the bow and stern cleats on the boat, making sure to run outside the shrouds, stanchions, etc. Pull the line tight to the helm so the line isn't drooping down your freeboard, coiling the excess slack and overhand it on a rail to keep it within arm's reach.

As you pull in, come in close and as slowly as you have steerage. Bring the boat to the point where you can hop off, holding this double-ended dock-line. You can control the bow and stern both, and have the bow line in hand already.

Cleat off the stern of the boat as quickly as possible as the bow drifts off. Walk forward with the dockline pulling the boat back in with you, and cleat off the bow. The dockline will run between the two cleats on the dock. You should have enough line to cleat forward, although that depends a lot on the dock; in any case, cleat as far forward as you can, even if its not before the bow. The boat is now reasonably secure.

Add the 2nd dockline to the forward cleat if you couldn't reach it, and add a springline as you see fit.

This is by far the easiest way I've ever found to dock single-handed, and has never caused me any trouble.
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Old 20-06-2015, 22:53   #37
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Re: Choice for single handed?

Just buy a Drascombe Coaster.

http://www.maritime-identity.com/por...combe-coaster/
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Old 21-06-2015, 00:15   #38
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Re: Choice for single handed?

The OP's sailing area...... complete with a lugger...
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Old 21-06-2015, 17:17   #39
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Re: Choice for single handed?

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I currently sail a Drascombe Lugger single handed which is fairly straightforward. I am hoping to buy another sailing boat which I will also sail single handed. I appreciate people sail all sorts (and sizes) of yachts single handed but my sailing habits are that I go sailing about 120 times a year but only for brief periods of about 4 hours. During this time I may stow my sails and have an hours fishing.

I have recently sailed a Sigma 33 and have deemed this totally unsuitable for my needs.

I am 60 yrs old but fairly fit.

Please could anyone suggest a sailing vessel genuinely suitable for single handed but larger than the Lugger and with some accommodation.

Any other advice appreciated.

Thanks

Mike
Mike - Where are you planing to sail?

Up until I was almost 70 I also sailed about that many days a year, often about 4 hours in length. (At 70 I started a four year cruise.)

When I was only 60, twenty years ago, I singlehanded my Cal 39 often. When I was 45 (1980) I singlehanded the same Cal to Hawaii from San Francisco. It was easy, easier in the open ocean than in the Sacramento River. But I've done that - even at night.

Before I had the Cal I had a Catalina 22 and often singlehanded her. It was easier to raise sails and to flake them, otherwise singlehanding the Cal was easier, even though I was younger on the Catalina.

Before that I had an O'Day Daysailer and I often singlehanded her. It was harder still. I couldn't leave the tiller, even if it was tied off, for more than a few seconds because it changed course as I changed location on the boat.

All of these are fairly light for their size. The Cal is fin keel, the Catalina swing keel , the Day Sailer retractable centerboard. I've also done in-harbor singlehanding of many boats that I've delivered.

I also did yacht deliveries in the 1980s, 90s, and early 2000s, on many types of vessels, along the Pacific Coast and both to and from Hawaii. (I always had crew on paid deliveries - I felt it was the only responsible way when I was taking money to care for another's boat.)

That's the experience behind what I will say.

I suggest a fairly light boat (for pleasure sailing in even light winds). I'm not in favor of a heavy boat for singlehanding because you won't sail it in light winds and for a short sail you're unlikely to get caught in heavy weather. Probably in the 25' to 30' range for accommodations, although I found the Catalina 22 quite satisfactory for me.
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Old 21-06-2015, 17:47   #40
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Re: Choice for single handed?

My Beneteau Oceanis 38 single-hands very well for me at 45. I have no trouble tacking across the wide beam, but that could get troublesome as I get older. Also nice to fish off the wide open stern.

Frankly I think any boat in the 40' class with a self-tacking jib and a roller-furling main, with lines led aft and an autopilot, is going to be a single-handers dream. The self-tacking jib removes a crewman as does the self-taking jib, and not having to deal with hoisting is nice but being able to single-handed reef in any winds without having to head into the wind is important.

But you've got to have higher winds for that setup. 10 knots or less of TWS and you're losing quite a bit of speed to the smaller sails. A self-tacking jib and a roller furling main are equivalent in size to the first reef-point on standard sized sails for most boats. So if you could routinely sail on a small reef, this would be the way to go in my opinion.
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Old 23-06-2015, 06:37   #41
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Re: Choice for single handed?

Thanks all,

I am the OP.

I must appologise for not replying sooner. I do not have internet connection at home and rely on libraries.

I have given the whole thread a good read.

My budget is probably up to 15,000.

I sail out of Whitby, N Yorks.

The reason I found the Sigma 33 unsuitable was for 2 reasons. We sailed out a few miles and then decided to fish. The main sail was difficult and time consuming to lower in order to fish. Once it was stowed reasonably tidily the boat just kept on sailing. WE were trying to fish on the bottom in 180 feet of water but this was difficult in about 10 kn of wind. In order to fish from the Sigma the winds would have to be very light < 5kn. Perhaps the sail handling would be much easier if the vessel had lazy jacks?.

I guess a heavier boat would not catch the wind as much. The Sigma seems to have a lot of boat sticking out of the water.

Thomm225 interpreted my situation very accurately. Having regular short trips I do not want any more time than necessary spent raising, lowering and stowing sails. I sometimes lower and raise sails at sea several times in my few hours afloat.

I assume for single handing a cutter rig would not be a wise choice?.

I have been looking through a few magazines and have come up with a longish short list.

Halcyon 27
Vertue ?
Contessa 26
Cutlass 27
Vancouver 27
Sadler 25
Nicholson 26

I am just going to have a google to see if there are any available locally.

Thanks again for your advice.

Mike



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Old 23-06-2015, 07:54   #42
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Re: Choice for single handed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike1956 View Post
The reason I found the Sigma 33 unsuitable was for 2 reasons. We sailed out a few miles and then decided to fish. The main sail was difficult and time consuming to lower in order to fish. Once it was stowed reasonably tidily the boat just kept on sailing. WE were trying to fish on the bottom in 180 feet of water but this was difficult in about 10 kn of wind. In order to fish from the Sigma the winds would have to be very light < 5kn. Perhaps the sail handling would be much easier if the vessel had lazy jacks?.

I guess a heavier boat would not catch the wind as much. The Sigma seems to have a lot of boat sticking out of the water.

Thomm225 interpreted my situation very accurately. Having regular short trips I do not want any more time than necessary spent raising, lowering and stowing sails. I sometimes lower and raise sails at sea several times in my few hours afloat.
Thanks for speaking up and clarifying the issues.

Unless you have in-mast furling, the main will always be "work" to set and stow. I feel the same way. So I just unroll the jib instead. Many boats sail very well, with only a little loss of speed, under jib alone. Its easy and quick. What more could you want?

As for "drifting" while fishing. Its a boat, not a car. It doesn't have "Park". Your issue is not with the boat model, its with fishing from a boat.

From you comments, perhaps you would prefer a power boat?
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Old 23-06-2015, 08:20   #43
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Re: Choice for single handed?

The more freeboard you have the more susceptible the boat is to windage even when the rigging is clear of sails. Learning to heave to may be helpful but I don't think trying to fish the bottom from a sail boat is the best use of one.
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Old 23-06-2015, 14:31   #44
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Choice for single handed?

Honestly if you are just short tripping to fish, why not use a Hobie Adventure Island trimaran kayak rigged for fishing? They are mad fast, can handle up to two foot seas, cheap as houses, and trivially easy to single hand. Roller fueling main with no rigging, built in rod holders, bait well, and easy to rig with a fish finder.

If you don't need to sleep aboard or take anybody, you can't do better.


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Old 23-06-2015, 16:23   #45
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Re: Choice for single handed?

My not so expert observation of small motor boats fishing in coastal areas is that they anchor when they want to bottom fish, even in 150+ feet of water. So, it isn't an issue just affecting sailboats... the wind will have its way with small vessels no matter what type they are.

It doesn't take a heroic anchor for this sort of usage, and a nearly all rope rode will work well enough, but of course it is a bit of work deploying and retrieving it. If dealing with the mainsail seems too hard and time consuming, anchoring isn't going to set well either, I expect.

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