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Old 14-07-2012, 14:45   #1
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Sturdiness rating

Was just wondering...if 10 was virtually unsinkable, and 1 was barely able to float, what mfg of sailboats would consistantly score near the 10 range? I'm speaking of cruising boats more than racers.
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Old 14-07-2012, 14:48   #2
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Hard to give a ranking. But I would check 2 things. Hull material - how easy it is to penetrate. E.g steel or aluminum are of course better than plastic. Although a twaron or kevalr reinforced plastic may be almost as good as steel... Second - waterproof structural bulkheads...
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Old 14-07-2012, 17:49   #3
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Re: Sturdiness rating

Understand that steel/aluminum will be stronger than Fiberglass. Was looking more at the productions boats vs customs. Thank you.
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Old 14-07-2012, 18:27   #4
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Re: Sturdiness rating

It really, really depends on the specific boat.

Most sailboats don't sink because of structual failures, but because of poorly installed or maintained equipment. Think rusting hose clamps, broken through hulls, corroded keel bolts, ect. The likely hook of a hull breach leading to a sinking, while possible in any boat is a very remote possibility.

To protect from a hull breach, the only thing that would really help is positive flotation. So in this regard I would think a carbon foam hull would be best, followed fiberglass, then aluminium, then steel. But specific design elements would be much more important than construction material.


According to BoatUS insurance claims 80% of boats sink at the dock, and the most common cause of sinking is underwater fittings accounting for 50% of all at the dock sinkings, or 40% of all sinkings.

Underway sinkings account then for 20 of sinkings, the biggest problem is taking water of the gunnels (this survey included power boats) at 30% of underway sinkings. But another 30% of underway sinkings were caused by either bad through hulls or leaks in hoses.

In total about 2% of all sinkings were caused by either the hull separating or hitting debris while underway.

http://www.boatus.com/seaworthy/sinking/default.asp
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Old 14-07-2012, 18:31   #5
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Re: Sturdiness rating

So is there a company or website that rates boats as they have for cars? I.E. an EDMUNDDS.COM for boats. How does one find out how reliable a boat is. Understanding that maintenance history relates to reliablity, is there history of Catalinas being more reliable than Beneteaus, Hylas being more reliable than Hanse etc?
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Old 14-07-2012, 19:31   #6
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Re: Sturdiness rating

You've come up with a question that has me stumped. I don't know if there is some kind of rating such as Consumer Reports would do to evaluate boats year by year of production.

Cumulative knowledge on this and other related sailing forums offers some opinion. If you come up with a year and specific production boat there are many here who either own or have owned.

I am reluctant to tell you which boats I would not buy because I don't want to insult owner's choice because it is somewhat akin to bad mouthing someone's mother.

Very good question and I await other folks responses.

kind regards,
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Old 14-07-2012, 19:33   #7
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Re: Sturdiness rating

I will tell you that Fisher, Cascade, Westsail, Ingrid, Rawson have bullet proof hulls but many of them were owner finished and the rest of the boat may not be of as good a quality.
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Old 14-07-2012, 19:34   #8
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Re: Sturdiness rating

Theres Ins Companys that have a great number of records like this and also records of the reasons all types of boats sank! most of them were most likely caused by the owners or the operators of them! but lots of luck getting any info from them about anything LOL I really don't think you will find a site with this type of info but you might do it by cking USCG records and like that for ships lost or sunk and come up with some Ideas ! maybe??
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