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Old 08-01-2012, 14:13   #31
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

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All other things being equal, naturally aft cockpit boats are dryer - you are sitting further from the splash.

But a CC boat will have the cockpit higher than an AC boat of similar size -- that will compensate somewhat.

And of course, the bigger the boat, the less the problem. With size you get a taller bow and greater distance between the cockpit and the bow. The bow is further from the cockpit in my present CC boat than it was on my previous 37' AC boat.

And you'll get wet from time to time in any case. Every ocean going sailboat of whatever size needs a good dodger. Mine has a fixed hard windshield which I highly recommend. I've been drenched once by a sea breaking on the beam (foolishly sailing on a beam reach in a F8 and huge seas) but hardly ever get more than a splash from the bow even in really tough conditions -- in a CC boat.

And one thing no one has mentioned -- a CC has much less risk of being pooped than an AC boat of the same size. As the cockpit is not only further from the stern but also higher.

Concerning engine rooms -- Nick is right, of course -- it depends on priorities of the designers. The Sundeers have the whole aft end of the boat dedicated to an enormous walk-in engine room -- the best engine space I've ever seen on a sailboat. But nevertheless there is a strong correlation between center cockpits and good engine rooms -- the Sundeers are an outlyer. I guess it is because the space below the high cockpit is so natural for engine space. Where to put the engine is a real problem on aft cockpit boats of less than 50 feet or so. My previous boat had a v-drive in order to contort the engine into the space behind the companionway -- ick! The only access, without ripping the boat apart, was from the companionway side -- it was pure hell to do anything (thank God the engine was so reliable). Most aft cockpit boats under 50' are a variation on this theme.

Not only is the space under the CC a natural place for an engine room, it is the same for tankage, batteries, etc. This puts all the heavy gear low down in the center of the boat, where it should be. I would think an engine room all the way aft would dramatically effect the motion of the boat. It also puts all critical systems in one well lit easy to access dedicated space.
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Old 08-01-2012, 14:20   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead
And one thing no one has mentioned -- a CC has much less risk of being pooped than an AC boat of the same size.
I was waiting for it It is the only pro for a CC while underway imho. Moored or at anchor I see some additional benefit.

Was it minaret posting that ketch? Nice boat, but OP not only limits to CC but also to sloop or cutter rigged. Another mistake as I see it

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Old 08-01-2012, 19:54   #33
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

First off, thanks for all the replys.

OK, this thread has "expanded" to discuss pro's and con's of Center Cockpit vs. Aft Cockpit sailboats. I am good with that and willing to listen to other peoples opinions. Some of the points brought up, I havent considered. Let me reiterated some of what I have already stated and give a little bit more of my perspective.

The main reason I am leaning towards a center cockpit is;
1. Great potential for comfortable and safer fishing from the aft area a cc provides. I have fished from an ac boat and done well but only know that it should be quite a bit more comfortable from a cc aft deck area.
2. I like the ride in an aft stateroom MUCH better than having a berth in the bow. While in big sea's we had a person actually get launched from sleeping in a vee berth and hit the floor. Plain and simple the ride is much better in the stern.
3. We my wife and I plan on retiring and doing some long term cruising, so the boat will be our home. We will at time be under way 24x7 and comfort along certainly with safety is paramount.
4. The typical floor plans of boats in our target size 40-50 ft seem very similar in most models which tend to favor aft state room in cc boats.
5. I would expect to have a solid dodger on any boat we settle into, if not we will install such a dodger.

My experience is limited in types of sailboats I have been on. They include a 46 ft Bavaria ac, a 52 ft Swan, 38 ft Catalina ac, 25 ft O'day ac. The Swan was only for a day of sailing. The Catalina is a boat I have been on quite a bit for 6 years/once a week but only local day sailing. The O'day is also only local day sailing. The Bavaria, I have crossed the Atlantic in the ARC, basically brought the boat from Portugal to Puerto Vallarta in about 7 legs including Panama Canal, numerous ports in the Caribbean, Central America, & Mexico. I have been boating on the ocean for 30 years, mostly in a power boat. I have only been sea sick once in the last 20 years. I feel very confident in my seamanship skills and experience. I am ver handy and skilled at maintaing most all systems on boats.

I shy away from a ketch because I have never sailed in one and more significant I see it as more rigging, more sails, more winches, more sheets, blocks, .... to maintain not to mention more potential of things to fail.

Now the other side, I am open to listen and learn from all of you. IMO that is one of the great advantages of websites like CF. As I said before, I would be willing to spend up to 300 K for a boat that has be equipped with most of what we want. I more realistically see us purchasing something for about 200 k and spending another 100 k to get her ready to set sail.

I have collated the list of suggested boats, please feel free to add to it or comment about any of the vessels mentioned.

1 Hylas 46
2 Hylas 49
3 Stevens 47
4 Stevens 49
5 Tayana 48
6 Norseman 447
7 Caliber 47
8 Passport 47
9 Moody 48
10 Peterson 44
11 Brewer 44
12 Cambria 44
13 Taswell 43
14 Taswell 49
15 Liberty 45
16 Freedom 45
17 Hans Christian 48
18 Bristol 43
19 Bristol 45
20 Bristol 47
21 Island Packet 445
22 Island Packet 465
23 Island Packet 485
24 Hallberg Rassey
25 Oyster
26 Swan
27 Contest
28 Moody 47
29 Peason 422
30 Amel 48
31 CSY 44
32 Formosa
33 Endevor 43
34 Peterson 44
35 Nautical 52

Thanks for your comments.
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Old 08-01-2012, 20:00   #34
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

45' Fuji is a great boat also. Hylas or Tayana are usually a little more money. Kind of a cult following is the Amel Super Marmamu great sailers maybe a little over budget.
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Old 09-01-2012, 08:30   #35
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I will toss in a C&C Landfall 48. Sorry, slightly biased after owning one for the past 7 years
Aft cockpit with pilot house & cutter rig - yes, we also have our own aft stateroom. We lived aboard for 2 years in the Caribbean, and the prior owners spent 5 years aboard between the Med and Caribbean. You get many of the benefits of a centre-cockpit (engine, systems, tankage under the floor), but don't lose the aesthetics of an aft-cockpit design.
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Old 09-01-2012, 10:42   #36
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

First, can we PLEASE limit this thread to the question of the original poster? Beating dead horses has just confuses the reader. He's settled on a center cockpit, let's leave it at that.

I love your list. You would be fine with any of the top 10. Some of the boats are quite a bit under your budget number. The Stevens and Hylas, as I'm sure you know, are the same boat. If we hadn't stumbled on our boat at the right price, this is exactly where we would have been (Stevens or Hylas).

I'd recommend our boat, but right now there are none on the market (only 16 were made, we know one is at the bottom in Samoa). It's very similar to the Hylas/Stevens boats. McIntosh 47 Yachts - Fast cruising yachts for discerning owners
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Old 10-01-2012, 04:58   #37
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

Have you considered the draft and mast height relative to where you plan to sail? If the boat has a full or fin keel it will (typically) draw less than the same size boat with a skeg keel. The ketch will almost certainly have shorter masts, thereby making it easier for the ICW for example.
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Old 10-01-2012, 05:28   #38
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
I was waiting for it It is the only pro for a CC while underway imho. Moored or at anchor I see some additional benefit.

Was it minaret posting that ketch? Nice boat, but OP not only limits to CC but also to sloop or cutter rigged. Another mistake as I see it

ciao!
Nick.
Well, there are other advantages to center cockpit designs.

The view is better, especially when docking. This becomes quite important as the boat gets bigger.

The after deck of a CC boat is the nicest outdoor space you can have on a sailboat. AC boats have drastically less usable outdoor space. The afterdeck is just a fabulous place to hang out, under way or at anchor, sunbathe, work, whatever. In AC boats, usable space outdoors is more or less limited to the cockpit, which certainly needs to be bigger as a result.

Below a certain size, center cockpits are probably a lot wetter than aft cockpits, but in my experience fine on boats of the size the OP is looking at. I get an occasional splash over the bow in heavy weather -- as everyone does on any size boat -- but even crashing into seas the maximum I can make any headway against, I stay dry in the cockpit. I have a hard windshield (a great thing BTW) but rarely does seawater coming over the bow hit it. Now of course we are 54 feet on deck with a fairly high bow (about 2 meters from water to bow roller), and with short bulwarks (another great thing BTW), but in my experience by the upper 40's of boat length center cockpits are not particularly wet.

I have been in conditions where I got seas breaking over the beam into the cockpit (scary!), but heading up, nothing untoward over the bow. Now it takes some pretty big, steep waves to do that to a boat with 16' beam and high center cockpit. We would have been drenched (or washed away!) in a low aft cockpit in those conditions, I am sure.

Another issue is arrangement of volumes below. Below a certain size designers have problems creating a decent pass-through to the aft cabin, in a CC boat. I've never seen a CC boat under 40 feet which worked decently below, for this reason. But as the boat gets bigger, this problem disappears, and you start to get a great benefit in planning interior volumes from the fact that you have a perfect mechanical space under the cockpit, in a CC boat. Few designers -- none that i know of, actually, other than Dashew -- are willing to devote 10' of LOA to mechanical space. So the Sundeer is an absolutely unique solution for an AC boat from that point of view. All other AC boats have crappy mechanical space and difficult engine access, a very significant disadvantage in my opinion. I suffered extreme torture in my previous AC boat because of this and this would have been a fatal flaw if the engine and gearbox had not been so extremely reliable (Perkins 4-108).

I don't think any AC boat made, except only for the Sundeer which has such a radical solution to the problem, has mechanical space like my boat does. It is a virtually walk-in space (definitely crawl-in), with room for 180 degrees all-around access to main engine, gearbox, stuffing box, and the generator set mounted above it on a platform, fuel filters, battery chargers, whatever you like. CC configurations give a much better solution to this very serious problem.

CC versus AC is of course a matter of taste, and anyone interested can find gigabytes of discussion in the archives. But I can't agree, Nick, that the choice is as obvious as you make it out to be. To my taste, on the contrary, over 50', and probably anywhere getting close to 50', CC is a clear choice.
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Old 10-01-2012, 05:57   #39
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

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Well, there are other advantages to center cockpit designs.
CC versus AC is of course a matter of taste, and anyone interested can find gigabytes of discussion in the archives. But I can't agree, Nick, that the choice is as obvious as you make it out to be. To my taste, on the contrary, over 50', and probably anywhere getting close to 50', CC is a clear choice.
+1 Absolutely.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:25   #40
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

I needed to put the iPad aside and get the MacBook to answer this one

Quote:
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Well, there are other advantages to center cockpit designs.

The view is better, especially when docking. This becomes quite important as the boat gets bigger.
How can a CC cockpit provide a better view during docking than an aft cockpit when the docking is done stern-to in a slip, or sideways along a wall or dock?! You are so much further away from where it all happens, that I don't see how that can be advantageous.
The only advantage might be when docking bow first into a slip. With my 64' and the years maneuvering with it, I got a good feel for it but if it's tight enough, I need a hand at the bow meaning I can't single hand it then. But if alone, I would switch to reversing into the slip which is our preferred way anyhow.

So, I really feel that the myth of CC provides better view during docking is... B u s t e d !

Quote:
The after deck of a CC boat is the nicest outdoor space you can have on a sailboat. AC boats have drastically less usable outdoor space. The afterdeck is just a fabulous place to hang out, under way or at anchor, sunbathe, work, whatever. In AC boats, usable space outdoors is more or less limited to the cockpit, which certainly needs to be bigger as a result.
That's a nice one. So what do 50'+ AC boats have where CC boats have their cockpit?!

(See, not a Dashew boat ) Lovely space there for sipping sundowners while sitting in nice deck chairs etc. Now let's just compare that to the rumored aft deck on CC boats:

This is a 70' boat. There is 2-3 feet of aft deck. Where a lovely mid deck could be, we find a hugely ugly contraption to create more interior volume eliminating any chance to use that for deck lounging too. The cockpit is the only place left on this CC, exactly the opposite of what the myth says... B u s t e d

Quote:
Below a certain size, center cockpits are probably a lot wetter than aft cockpits, but in my experience fine on boats of the size the OP is looking at.
Okay, I'll go along with this one. At 46'+ boats the wet cockpit becomes less of an issue, agreed

Quote:
I have been in conditions where I got seas breaking over the beam into the cockpit (scary!), but heading up, nothing untoward over the bow. Now it takes some pretty big, steep waves to do that to a boat with 16' beam and high center cockpit. We would have been drenched (or washed away!) in a low aft cockpit in those conditions, I am sure.
A decent design of the size we are discussing only gets water into the cockpit from two sources: some deck-spray which dribbles from the windward (high) side deck if coamings are not all around (often at steering positions) and second, water from behind. Water from forward gets stopped by pilot house, dog house or dodger just like it does for your boat. This myth was busted before you even finished writing it
Now, seas from behind, as mentioned before, stands as an advantage for CC.

Quote:
I don't think any AC boat made, except only for the Sundeer which has such a radical solution to the problem, has mechanical space like my boat does. It is a virtually walk-in space (definitely crawl-in), with room for 180 degrees all-around access to main engine, gearbox, stuffing box, and the generator set mounted above it on a platform, fuel filters, battery chargers, whatever you like. CC configurations give a much better solution to this very serious problem.
Why can't I come up with 50' AC boats that have decent engine rooms? Hmmm, maybe you are right Myth confirmed: in general, CC boats have much better engine rooms !

Quote:
But I can't agree, Nick, that the choice is as obvious as you make it out to be. To my taste, on the contrary, over 50', and probably anywhere getting close to 50', CC is a clear choice.
Brrrrr.... the horror of CC I associate it with Edgar Allan Poe stories

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:16   #41
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

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This is a 70' boat. There is 2-3 feet of aft deck. Where a lovely mid deck could be, we find a hugely ugly contraption to create more interior volume eliminating any chance to use that for deck lounging too. The cockpit is the only place left on this CC, exactly the opposite of what the myth says... B u s t e d
1) Why do we keep arguing this? The OP has decided on a CC boat?

2) Look at ours, the ladies call the aft deck the "beach" (click on my avatar). You can sit up, or lie down on a large bed of cushions - room for 3 or 4 to lounge. There are also 2 princess seats. All within discussion of the center cockpit.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:31   #42
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

Nobody mentioned the Hylas 47! Granted, it's practically the same as the Stevens 47, and it's the older version of the Hylas 49, it still deserves respect! The Hylas 46 is a very different boat than the 47 and 49, so check them all out. By the way, any of the boats on the list could serve well, I would be more interested in the actual condition/cruise readiness of a particular boat than the specific model. You can spend a lot on adding the features that other boats may already have. Another boat to add to the list is the Hans Christian 43, its overall length with the bowsprit is closer to 50'.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:35   #43
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged

Our CC is 12'X9'; that's 100+ square feet of extra living space with the dodger and bimini. We like the area so much we've added a hard top. 40-60 knot winds in an AC, you're getting wet; in a CC we keep warm and dry. Yes, actual docking is a pain because you're so far away from the dock, but you have a great view as you run over your neighbor. We didn't like all CC boats, some like the Gulfstar had an awful design to access the aft berth. We can actually walk upright from one end of our boat to the other with all kinds of handhold placements. Our engine room is so spacious, even most power boaters are envious. While many CC boats are not "rail in the water" type of boats, they're usually dry and comfortable riding and well worth the few shortcomings they may possess.
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Old 10-01-2012, 14:16   #44
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Re: Looking for Center Cockpit 40-50 ft Sloop or Cutter Rigged


Spent 2 weeks on this Swan 68 which has an aft cockpit plus a center cockpit...The best of both worlds. (went from Newport to Tortola in the 1997 Caribbean 1500.)
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Old 10-01-2012, 16:20   #45
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Quote:
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1) Why do we keep arguing this? The OP has decided on a CC boat?

2) Look at ours, the ladies call the aft deck the "beach" (click on my avatar). You can sit up, or lie down on a large bed of cushions - room for 3 or 4 to lounge. There are also 2 princess seats. All within discussion of the center cockpit.
1) Why would we indeed? May be because it's the CC vs AC never ending story?

2) ah, you just want to join the argument

ciao!
Nick.
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