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View Poll Results: what do you think is better overall for a long term cruiser?
sailing performance over living space 24 30.77%
living space over sailing performance 54 69.23%
Voters: 78. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 29-11-2009, 14:33   #31
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Originally Posted by cruiser6003 View Post
When someone says to me they want to cruise, I think Bahamas / Caribbean cruising where being self sufficient is more of a priority than speed. To be self sufficient, you need space for things.. provisions, spares, extra clothing perhaps, fuel, water, batteries.

A long run in the bahamas might be a full day. Most closer to several hours or less. Get to the Caribbean and you can have longer passages of course but still pretty short in the scheme of things.

For me, comfort is King. Speed be damned. If needed I can motorsail at 9+ or sail at 7, but I plan for 5kts and don't really care if I only make 3. Anchorage to anchorage is my goal when out, and when there I want comforts to a degree. I get there about the same time as the fast 36 footers and only slightly behind the trawlers.

Full sized reefer, room for w/d, watermaker, king bed, full shower, galley and TONs of storage. All this for 40k + refit (genset, rigging)

On the nail head IMO...nice post.

We still have a power cruiser..If I wanted pure performance to get there fast Id have the sail boat for sale instead of it..
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Old 29-11-2009, 14:40   #32
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I just discovered another dimension to this question; usable deck space?

I have always kind of swayed toward below deck living space, but am not in the market to afford a decent deck salon, so most of the boat’s living spaces I have been looking at leave you rocking around below deck with no view of the sea.

Then I found this H-28 that has incredibly usable deck space and cockpit. It might not be a performance boat, however it is still seems to give you the option of having a lot of room to play around on deck including a big cockpit, nice flat foredeck and bow sprit. I am sure I am about to discover the downfall of not having too much performance. Nevertheless, this seems to be offset by the fact I can enjoy my time above deck?

I will be out doing sea trials and setting off over the next few weeks, so I will come back and post an update on this issue.
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Old 29-11-2009, 14:56   #33
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I and most cruisers I talk with spend as much time motoring as they do sailing. I vote for comfort
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:32   #34
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I was below decks last week and I realized that I have a pretty small 48 footer (compared to what I see at the boat shows). But man does she go! So I think my choice is clear- I went for sailing ability.
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:26   #35
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Respectfully to S&S...

I think at 48' you have much more comfort than you realize. You may have a fast 48' and less usable room than a newer design 48, but you still have LOTS of room. I would venture a guess that the vast majority of "cruisers" are out there in 30 to 40 footers. At that size range I think the comfort vs speed question is more valid. At the prices most of us can afford, it means older designs which makes the question even more relevant.

But, as I mentioned earlier unless you are trying to make large distances why would you care? Certainly you want a boat that performs adequate, perhaps even well, but IMHO, not at the expense of comfort. My boat cannot point well, so I do go more offwind and cover more ground than a performance boat would... but, it means a perf boat 4 hour trip is my 4-1/2 hour trip is all. That is unless I choose to start my engine and go directly toward my next anchorage and make it a 2 hour trip.

Cruising to me is about getting there comfortably, efficiently and then just BEING THERE. And when there... being comfortable. A fast boat at anchor is just another boat. I am not a racer at all but one can judge performance a bit with the PHRF ratings. Mine is a Columbia 45 with a NorCal PHRF rating of 138 which makes it quick enuf to actually get there but get there in comfort and when there be VERY comfortable.
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:54   #36
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I too agree with Cruiser6003. Most cruising boats spend something like 90% of their time at anchor. If you don’t enjoy living on the boat at anchor, no amount of sailing performance will keep you cruising. I place a premium on comfortable easily accessed sleeping accommodations, fully equipped and easily navigated galley, stand-up showers, etc. Roomy plush salons are nice too, but in the tropics you spend most of your awake-on-the-boat time in the cockpit. I want it well shaded with plenty of room for lounging and watching the world go by.

Our old Hunter 34 (even loaded down and probably overloaded for cruising) was an excellent light wind performer. There were many times when we appreciated this - not the least of which was exchanging insults with cruisers on bigger boats as we sailed away from them. However, in stronger winds, especially in the Caribbean, we frequently had a reef or two in the mainsail when we didn’t need one. The reason was that we didn’t care that it might take us 7 hours instead of 6 to reach the next island. We did care that we could ride the swells and do 7 hours at less than 10 degrees heel instead of bashing along at 15 degrees.

And yes, our original determination to use the engine as little as possible sort of morfed into "don't use the engine unless it will make things easier and more comfortable."
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:55   #37
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It's true! You can have both performance and comfort! This is the boat for the racing cruiser... get there in style, ahead of everyone, hopefully even the swiss and the kiwis!
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:59   #38
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Don, first of all you already have a boat with good performance and good accommodations. If you can average 6-7 knots or so, and your boat will do that, in trade wind sailing you are doing just fine.

Here is the leader board for the 09 ARC. Even the largest boats (110') in the fleet are only able to average 9 knots and this is a record year.
Leaderboard : ARC RORC Racing Divisions

What does 20 look like? Wally 100



What does a 600 mile day look like in seas? Here:



So you can get a Volvo 70 or an Orma 60 and knock off 600 miles in total misery or just get a comfortable mono or multi and figure 160-170 day run is gonna be a nice comfortable average.
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Old 02-12-2009, 13:29   #39
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Respectfully to S&S...

I think at 48' you have much more comfort than you realize. You may have a fast 48' and less usable room than a newer design 48, but you still have LOTS of room. I would venture a guess that the vast majority of "cruisers" are out there in 30 to 40 footers. At that size range I think the comfort vs speed question is more valid. At the prices most of us can afford, it means older designs which makes the question even more relevant.

.
Oh don't get me wrong, I'm completely satisfied with our "comfort level". That said, compared to new boats of similar length she's "cozy' below decks. It's more like camping than the floating estate you get with newer, beamier boats: Centerline table rather than a dinette,single bunks etc. A lot of space is used up with the counter stern- great for storage/mechanicals but it's not living space.
Where we are now(Great lakes) and where we were previously (pretty far north in the Atlantic) the requirements are somewhat different than in the Carib.
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Old 02-12-2009, 13:56   #40
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"Don, first of all you already have a boat with good performance and good accommodations. If you can average 6-7 knots or so, and your boat will do that, in trade wind sailing you are doing just fine."

My Cal-39 sails fine and has pretty good accommodations. For just cruising around on the weekends and a week long trip here and there it is just fine (that's why I brought it). But for longer cruising and as I age I would give up some performance for better accommodations.

Some of the comment about assuming that size = accommodations don't hold up too well. Lots of older 48' boats have less living space than "newer" (like only 20 years old) 40-42' boats. I have even come across some 38' CCs that have better accommodations that 46' CCs, but of course do it at the expensive of storage.

Everything is a give and take. Just wondered how others saw the balance as to long term cruising/living aboard.
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Old 02-12-2009, 14:01   #41
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Think I'd add another dimension.

accomodations, performance, and beauty.

Racing rules of yore produced some skinny, wet, but fine looking designs.
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Old 02-12-2009, 14:27   #42
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Think I'd add another dimension.

accomodations, performance, and beauty.

Racing rules of yore produced some skinny, wet, fast but fine looking designs.
Fixed it for you
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Old 02-12-2009, 14:31   #43
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just not that simple. You need reasonable sailing performance so you can go through rough water into the wind and make progress, but you dont need top speed at the risk of comfort. Accomodations for two you only need one head, a berth, a shower and a galley and some room to move around....
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Old 02-12-2009, 15:09   #44
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Performance-Comfort-Cheap Pick any two.

I think performance and comfort both matter. Its not an either or situation unless you are loaded with money....then you can have both. Its called a 90 foot plus catamaran with paid crew.
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Old 02-12-2009, 17:30   #45
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Originally Posted by SurferShane View Post
I just discovered another dimension to this question; usable deck space?


Shane,

Its really important when you are circumnavigating (I've dropped the word 'cruising' here as folks who run up and down some bay in the USA think thats cruising).

We spend a lot of time in the cockpit and they get small! Our next boat will be a twin wheel cockpit because it frees up so much space.

Often having sundowners on someones boat one person is forced to sit behind the wheel - you can't see anyone else. Sitting in a normal size cockpit next to a guy suddenly I feel like I must be turning gay - its just a tad squishy.

So look at the cockpit and see if its large enough to sleep in and large enough to pass someone, large enough to entertain without climbing over someone.

For deck space forward then you need to get rid of the dinghy sitting on the foredeck, stow the gerry cans in a lazarette, get rid of the dorades (a good cruising boat needs hatches not dorades for the tropics). Find if there is a comfortable spot to sit, or lie down forward, and space to string the hammock.

If that hackneyed phrase about 90% of time at anchor is correct then 90% of the time you need good deckspace and a good cabin.

Most people circumnavigate the tropics. The problem is HEAT not cold. Our 13 opening hatches are a blessing, far more important than the necessity to drive the boat so hard one breaks gear.


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