Originally Posted by Solosailor
I want something under 40' that is seakind and and seaworthy
but not a slug. Does anyone have a short list?
If you go anything much under 40 foot you will end up with a "slug" as it is impossible to build a sailboat in steel at a reasonable weight at those lengths and weight kills speed.
40 foot is often stated as the minimum sensible length and you will find very few boats even at that length that are not significantly overweight when compared to even heavy builds of other materials.
For example, we have a 40 foot cruising sailboat professionally built for us in steel by a builder
used to designing and building fast light cruising boats in composites. With a lot of effort and tricks eg no skeg and a composite spade rudder
to save the weight of steel in those (and for performance), minimum plate thicknesses everywhere (light! -> as was expected for the build the frames buckled as the boat shrunk as the plating was welded up) and much care in fitout not to overbuild anything, we just managed to keep the weight to about the same as a solidly built fibreglass boat.
A small steel vessel which is overweight may also display other faults such as crankiness, etc due to high centre of gravity and the tendency to trade
ballast because of the weight of steel in the boat in efforts to decrease displacement
. This can be ameliorated somewhat by using plywood
for decks and cabin
So for the boat size you are talking of, if you don't want a "slug" then if you want metal go to aluminium, else go to fibreglass - that is as others have already suggested. Alternatively if you are very lucky you might find a well built light 40'ish footer or longer, else have one of that length designed and built by people who really know what they are doing (super expensive).