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Old 24-09-2010, 02:32   #31
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By the way, the original poster built a new Bene: "My wife and I just took the plunge and bought a brand new 2010 Beneteau 36.7"

Nice to find out what the outcome of all the decision making. So often on here we give our thoughts and never find out.....

Hope they are having fun

Mark
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Old 24-09-2010, 04:53   #32
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Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
I did talk to people about the 70's Swans and they said that they had to have two people on the tiller when going downwind on a blow. These were racers. To my mind a boat with a wider transom is more stable off the wind and given a choice I try to set my course for downwind. The old IOR designs with the pinched stern are nice to look at but their performance is not up to that of a boat that was not designed to a particular rule.
The S & S Swan hull designs mostly precede radical IOR styling, in particular the 41, 44 and 48. Maybe they were referring to one of the Holland series such as the 39, 391 or 441 which might well need 2 on the helm. All had tortured rear ends.

An old S & S Swan will be fine downwind without a spinnaker - it just won't plane. That's OK because scientific testing has proven that too much planing sends your beer flat.
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Old 24-09-2010, 05:13   #33
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Originally Posted by gbanker View Post
we had a 1998 swan 48 prior to buying our hallberg rassy. the swans are well built and my wife and i think they are beautiful looking boats. we realized however that our style is to spend one or two hours at most sailing each day (our swan sailed like a dream) and living on the boat for the other 22 hours a day. therefore the switch to the HR. there are other boats better suited for living aboard than swans. the older swans, like a lot of boats from that era, have long overhangs and short waterlines. they perform best when heeled and are wet boats. as regards swans vs beneteaus; if i was to sail around the world i might lean more towards a swan but living aboard in the bahamas, cruising the caribbean, etc. i might be inclined to look at beneteaus IMHO.
The 48 was never intended as a liveaboard cruiser. It was the rich man's IMS racer of its day along with the 44 MK II. Both filled the role that the 45 fills today. I looked at buying one but decided it would cost too much to detune. The 48's won a lot of races through the 90's.
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Old 24-09-2010, 07:08   #34
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My Bendytoy eats Swans for breakfast, and costs half as much. However, I have friends who love cruising their Swans.
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Old 24-09-2010, 07:39   #35
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Don't worry, stuff like that happens every full moon. Cuppla days and you'll be fine.
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Old 24-09-2010, 09:53   #36
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Originally Posted by Pleiades View Post
Charlie;
You're right about the downwind performance on IOR rule boats such as the Swan 41, to a point. On a spinnaker run in strong winds, the Swan 41 tends to start oscilating, largely because the rudder is too far forward and therefore does not have enough authority (this is why it is moved aft on the 411.) Oscilations can be controlled by controlling the shape of the kite (ie: not allowing the shoulders to become full, and keeping the angles between the foot and the leech and the foot and the luff as near 90 degrees as possible.

They must have had midgets on board to need 2 on the helm.

I have taken my 41 through the Hecate Strait and on the outside of Vancouver Island in some horrendous weather and she stands beautifully. Very confidence inspiring. On the other hand I've been on Beneteaus and boats of that ilk whose hulls start panting in similar conditions. Definitely not confidence inspiring, IMHO.

I would also venture to say that the 41 is as fast as any Beneteau of the same length. In rough conditions, faster.
I looked at the Swan 41 and was interested in it but the main thing that steered me away was the teak decks. Beautiful, practical but too expensive. Sailing any boat downwind is an art form mixed with engineering. You have to dance down the waves and make sure that the sails are adjusted for the changes in apparent wind. It is alot of work. Some boats take it easier then others. I did quite a bit of downwind work on a Farr 40 and we had the kite up in 40 knots true. We were keeping up with boats that were five feet longer. For cruising I just wanted something really stable. My Sceptre 41 is one of those boats. I went down below while my crew had the cruising chute up and when I came back up I noticed that the sail looked a little strapped. We ended up loosening 10' or more of sheet. Our speed picked up almost two knots but the thing that really surprised me was that I didn't even feel the rudder over powered. My point is this. From your explanation the Swan sails fine downwind with out a kite. With a kite it takes more concentration. A boat that sails well downwind with a kite will have more in reserve so to speak for when the conditions get really crappy. Typically that boat won't do as well going upwind so it is all a compromise. And Swan's do look sharp. I sailed a Swan 57 from Tahiti to Australia and loved it.
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Old 24-09-2010, 11:37   #37
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I own a Swan 41 and would respectfully disagree with some of these statements.

These boats do not "require crew on the rail to hold them down." The Swan 41 is among the stiffest of fin keeled boats. The keel alone weighs nearly 5 tons. You don't have to "reef early." Much to the contrary. These are extraordinarily stiff and stable boats. Any of the stability and capsize ratio formulas (although I do not put a lot of stock in them) will bear this out. I can only conclude that you are thinking of a different model or maybe the new 42?

I would agree that, like most S&S designs, their strongest point of sail is going to wind, but I have never had any problem with squirrelly characteristics going downwind. However, I do not often use a spinnaker in high winds and could imagine it could be a lot of boat to handle with a kite in a heavy breeze.

Yes, they are smaller below than more modern boats of the same length. But they are also built much better and, in my opinion, safer than many of the more modern designs. The wood work below is beautiful and I have heard that Nautor allegedly keeps wood from the same batch used in each boat of this vintage on file in case you ever want work done so that it will perfectly match. (Not that I would expect to do that but it does demonstrate the commitment to quality and detail [if it is not just a myth]). The newer boats might be brighter and bigger and if that appeals to you or your wife the Swan clearly wasn't for you.

My wife and I are very comfortable cruising this boat. We also race it (non-spin) in beer can races with a small crew. I would agree that someone thinking about this boat might want to talk to those who have actually sailed it instead of relying on comments from others including brokers who might be trying to sell them another boat.
+1 on the above points.
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Old 24-09-2010, 19:20   #38
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If this does not make a fine and seaworthy cruising boat:

1970 Nautor Swan 43 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

then what does?

Sure thing boats from that time have less space and (?) tankage than a new 43' Bene. But then again if you are after space, why not buy a 43' barge?

IMHO this type of Swan layout is the very best in sea-going.

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Old 24-09-2010, 21:17   #39
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There are many things I don't like about my old (74) Swan, (the cockpit is too small and I'd like to have "U" shaped salon settees, the aft cabin layout needs a double berth). But if you look at other boats of the same vintage they leave even more to be desired and the quality of the workmanship is incomparable.

Fortunately, I didn't have to take anyone else's likes and dislikes into account when I purchased. I just went with my heart and didn't compromise. All in all, I love my boat more now than before, and wouldn't change her for anything...except perhaps a mid-80's Swan 46 or larger.

I take great pride in ownership. She has such beautiful lines and I have put so much blood, sweat and (I confess) money into her.

I sail a lot and I push her hard. She sails better than anything else I've been on.

Comparing Chevies to Mercedes is a waste of time. If you don't know, you just don't know.

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There are lots of things you can do to prolong the life of an aging teak deck. I'd love to replace the deck on mine, but it's not in the cards, so, bit by bit, I recaulk the seams.
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Old 24-09-2010, 23:12   #40
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I wanted a Swan......

but I couldn't believe the price.

SOooo, I bought and upgraded this "Ugly Duckling".


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Old 25-09-2010, 09:04   #41
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There are many options for those who like Swans and cannot afford one.

One way is to pick up a S&S design from the same era that was manufactured elsewhere.

I think there are the Tartans and probably a couple more.

There is also an Italian make believe named (?) (Cranchi ?) - not a Swan, but same lines.

Quality may differ but quality is not everything - a quality and beaten up boat is no good in any case.

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Old 25-09-2010, 13:38   #42
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Deluxe,

There can be few things more rewarding than working the decks of a Swan in the open ocean.

The older Swan is a true sailors boat. You SAIL the boat. Swans are for the open sea, they want to stretch their legs. But nothing wrong in styling it in port either.

Years ago (1984/85) I sailed regularly on a Swan 42 (Ron Holland design) and was eventually given the job of delivering her from South Africa to England for her owners. That's 7 000 miles. You just feel safer on a Swan!
Often when on watch by myself at night I would reef, change headsails (hanked on sails) tack or gybe by myself and would nor even bother to wake up the off watch. On a long voyage I felt that I actually enjoyed the workout the boat and it's gear gave me. Bye the way, we had windvane self steering and had no problems down wind, even under a small kite.

Following from there I was first mate on a SS Swan 57 ketch from England to Antigua. It was before the days of power winches and roller furler headsails. The first leg to the Canaries we sailed only two up. No problems. Then the owner's wife and small child joined us to Antigua. Even on the 57 the heavy gear was no real problem. Sailing is all about anticipation and if you do get caught out, with a Swan you at least have a good solid platform to work on.

The cabin? The old Swan's is the classic seagoing layout. Always a good comfy sea berth available on a classic Swan. Try finding a good sea berth while beating with a modern marina hugger.

And when the breeze creaps up into the 40's you will appreciate that "down into the womb" feeling.

If you sail them short handed, just take it easy. The boat will give you good solid average speeds when on passage whether you push it, or just amble along.

And when you pull into port at the end of a passage, you feel just that little bit extra better for being the guy with the Swan! Nothing wrong with that.

Boats come faster, boats come cheaper, easier to sail etc and these days I am a multihull sailor, but I'm sorry, but once a Swan guy, always a Swan guy.

And the old 41 is a pretty boat. That's enough reason to buy it.

Regards,

Banjo.
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Old 25-09-2010, 19:18   #43
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For the philistines among you...a picture tells a thousand words. Check out my youtube videos.

Just search youtube.com for "pleiades swan"

There are about 10 vids showing a Swan 41 moving very nicely, thank you.

John
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Old 25-09-2010, 23:31   #44
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It is probably a bit academic at this late stage but if I were to recommend a S & S Swan to deluxe68 it would be the 44. When looking at those older designs you need to add 5ft or so of LOA to your thinking because of the large overhangs.

If anyone is interested there is a good selection of them on Yachtworld. A fair price would be USD 100 - 150 depending on condition.
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Old 26-09-2010, 16:52   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBinRI View Post
I own a Swan 41 and would respectfully disagree with some of these statements.

These boats do not "require crew on the rail to hold them down." The Swan 41 is among the stiffest of fin keeled boats. The keel alone weighs nearly 5 tons. You don't have to "reef early." Much to the contrary. These are extraordinarily stiff and stable boats. Any of the stability and capsize ratio formulas (although I do not put a lot of stock in them) will bear this out. I can only conclude that you are thinking of a different model or maybe the new 42?

I would agree that, like most S&S designs, their strongest point of sail is going to wind, but I have never had any problem with squirrelly characteristics going downwind. However, I do not often use a spinnaker in high winds and could imagine it could be a lot of boat to handle with a kite in a heavy breeze.

Yes, they are smaller below than more modern boats of the same length. But they are also built much better and, in my opinion, safer than many of the more modern designs. The wood work below is beautiful and I have heard that Nautor allegedly keeps wood from the same batch used in each boat of this vintage on file in case you ever want work done so that it will perfectly match. (Not that I would expect to do that but it does demonstrate the commitment to quality and detail [if it is not just a myth]). The newer boats might be brighter and bigger and if that appeals to you or your wife the Swan clearly wasn't for you.

My wife and I are very comfortable cruising this boat. We also race it (non-spin) in beer can races with a small crew. I would agree that someone thinking about this boat might want to talk to those who have actually sailed it instead of relying on comments from others including brokers who might be trying to sell them another boat.

As a former delivery skipper in the 80's, I would definitely agree with the above. I delivered two Swans of this vintage and it was a joy. I have no idea where this stuff about "squirrelly downwind" came from on IOR boats. S&S designs have always been "sea boats" unlike the cocktail barges that are sold as sailboats from some of the more recent manufacturers--that your wife, who would probably prefer to be back at the condo anyway, would really will like. I would deliver almost any Swan anywhere over one of those flat bottomed, tiny ruddered, fat butt, queen bed below the cockpit, French-derived boats that pound and point 80 degrees from the wind. If I was using it for a bedroom or bar, OK. If you really want to go to sea, I have never seen an S&S design I would not prefer. Ask the folks who have been there and done that--not the brokers or dockside experts who have read all the books who repeat each other's "expertise". I would buy a Swan if I could afford it. Some other folks built IORs too light for the scantlings (not S&S) and that, and some wretchedly poor seamanship caused most of the problems of the 1979 Fastnet that caused a lot of people to think and write about IOR boats in a negative light. Most people want a bedroom and a bar, so be sure of what you are going to use the boat for before you buy it.
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