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Old 21-05-2014, 20:17   #1
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Sail-Drive in a Sailboat, Corbin 39'

Hi all,
I just saw an interesting sailboat called Corbin 39' that was made in Canada in the Eighties. and when I looked at different pictures to different boats for sale, I realized that the boat had a sail drive rather than a prop shaft.
Is this something bad in a sailboat, especially for an off-shore boat or not?
and also, any feedback about the Corbin 39'.

Thank you,

Andy
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Old 21-05-2014, 20:38   #2
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

Many Corbins were sold as "kit" boats. You got the hull and deck and did the rest yourself or hired someone to customize it. There was a Corbin in the yard beside our boat. It had a diesel engine and prop shaft. That's just about all I know about them.....
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Old 22-05-2014, 10:58   #3
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

Not really as long as its been properly maintained. Which is true of any boat abd system. Really just personal preference.

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Old 22-05-2014, 11:13   #4
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

I think most agree a shaft drive is better, but not a deal breaker. JMHO
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Old 22-05-2014, 13:28   #5
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

There can be issues with corrosion on the aluminum sail drive. Accidentally getting lines or flotsam stuck in the drive prop can damage the hull seal of the sail drive making for a big water ingress problem.

A sail drive is a non starter for me bit there are a bunch of them out there and, for the most part, working well.
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Old 22-05-2014, 14:27   #6
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

many corbin's were 'owner built' so the quality of the finish varies widely. the two i have been on seemed pretty well made and the design is certainly 'seaworthy'.

sail drives are a deal breaker to me. but that's just me. my friend has a catamaran with a sail drive and has to have it serviced often, although he's had no major problems with it. the leg is usually aluminum, which worries me. he's had to replace the rubber boot that seals the leg to the hull at least twice in the past ten years.
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Old 22-05-2014, 14:43   #7
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

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Originally Posted by Kevin84 View Post
Not really as long as its been properly maintained.
And installed. If these boats are owner-finished, that can be a big factor.

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Old 22-05-2014, 14:53   #8
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

I wonder why it has a sail drive? My neighbor has a Corbin and it is a straight and bored
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Old 22-05-2014, 15:20   #9
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

Yeah, what I should have said was Saildrive a deal breaker for me too, but I know many don't seem to mind them... anyone know if a sail drive engine can be converted to shaft drive?
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Old 22-05-2014, 15:33   #10
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

I have never seen a Corbin with a saildrive, I would imagine it was installed to provide more room in the boat. Corbins were sold in various stages of completion. actually 4 stages. you can go to the Corbin website and see all the particulars on the boat. Corbin 39 Owners Group of Canada and the United States these boats are world cruisers.
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Old 22-05-2014, 16:08   #11
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

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And installed. If these boats are owner-finished, that can be a big factor.

Mark
Good point Mark. Proper installation would make a HUGE difference in whether that boat is a good buy or not.

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Old 22-05-2014, 19:16   #12
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

Photo: saildrive, skeg, and rudder 043008 | Insouciance (10) (for sale) album | Corbin 39 Owners Group | Fotki.com, photo and video sharing made easy.

Check the link above for a picture of a Corbin for sale with a sail drive.
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Old 24-05-2014, 08:15   #13
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

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Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
There can be issues with corrosion on the aluminum sail drive. Accidentally getting lines or flotsam stuck in the drive prop can damage the hull seal of the sail drive making for a big water ingress problem.

A sail drive is a non starter for me bit there are a bunch of them out there and, for the most part, working well.
I had a B 36.7 and the small marina was doing some dredging. I got a call from the dealership in the marina saying that 2 boats lost their drives because of the dredging. The dredging stirred up some critters (bacteria?) and the water temp rapidly increased which also increased the electrolysis. It took just a few days to do this, they sent a diver down and luckily my boat was ok.
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Old 24-05-2014, 08:20   #14
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

I'm sorry, but bacteria (or other critters, or even just a stirred up bottom) and warm water cannot cause corrosion of a drive leg. Were all of the outboards and aluminum boats in the marina also corroded?

I'm not saying there wasn't problems with the 2 boats - just that the stirred up bottom and warm water had absolutely nothing to do with it.

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Old 24-05-2014, 09:48   #15
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Re: sail-drive in a sailboat, Corbin 39'

I am of the mindset that the simper the system the better.

Sail drives do a great job at what they do but in my mind it drastically increases the number of failures you can have.

A straight prop shaft propels the boat and you have very few moving parts and easy maintenance.
A sail drive propels the boat and has a ton more moving parts that can break and a lot more maintenance requirements.

Ultimately I like to use an airplane analogy. Small single engine air planes have air cooled engines. They do this primarily for 2 reasons. First it saves weight (not important with your concerns). Second if you don't have coolant and a coolant system you can't have a coolant leak or coolant system failure. Problem averted by minimizing "frills"

and just like others have said it would be a deal breaker for me. Too much to maintain and too much that can go wrong as compared to a traditional straight shaft
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