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Old 12-03-2009, 23:41   #31
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My partner's parents have lived on board a 40' Joe Adams centreboarder for about 16 years... no problems so far.
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Old 13-03-2009, 00:53   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aparrotwind View Post
We are replacing our centerboard with 2" thick UHMW - should be indestructible if hit head on and clean very easily too.
The only problem with that is that if you do hit someting realy solid, and the board does not break, the shock is transmitted totally to the centreboard case.

A boat will not sail very well witout a board, but it sails even worse when full of water.
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Old 13-03-2009, 01:32   #33
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I've got a Pearson 35. It's 40 years old and the centerboard is doing just fine after all those years. Do have to change the c/b cable every few years but haven't had to do it in the three yrears I've owned it. The board is absolutely quiet with it raised. It does clunk with it down at anchor but who puts the board down at anchor, anyway. For the most part, the boat sails just fine with the board up. Lower it for short tacking and beating but not all that often. The shallow draft can be a problem 'cause when you run aground with only 3'10" draft, you are really aground.

I wanted a Seabreeze but couldn't find one on the west coast. Think they are really a beautiful boat. Look at the earlier ones. They have a bronze centerboard. The later ones have an aluminum one, IIRC. The bronze board is heavy and heard it has a positive effect on stability when it's down that the aluminum one doesn't. One thing that I really liked about the Seabreeze is many had tillers. The Pearson's pretty much only came with wheels. I really hate the wheel. Am in the process of dumping it but it's an expense I wish I didn't have to make.

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Peter O.
Pearson 35
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Old 13-03-2009, 01:34   #34
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The UMHW sounds a good idea as the centreboard will kick up if you run onto anything so the chance of damage would be slight.
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Old 13-03-2009, 18:54   #35
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Keel Centerboard

I have a Pearson 39 Yawl with a keel/Centerboard. Draws 4'8" with the board up and 9'6" with the board down. I set one depth alarm at 10 feet and the other at 5 feet. Contrary to another's comment, no thunk thunk in light air for me. Board goes up and down with a geared penant that ties off to a cleat.
In the Chesapeake Bay anything over 5' really limits access to a lot of places so this is ideal. Points much higher and locks into the groove better with the board down and runs faster with the board up. I start raising the board from a beam reach through a run. Love it.
The boat is a 1975 and no problems so far. Biggest hassle is painting the board. When she is blocked up the board is up so I have to wait until they put it in the travel lift and over the water, lower the board, and paint it from a dinghy.
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Old 13-03-2009, 18:59   #36
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Roverhi: Why don't you like the wheel? I can't imagine going back to a tiller. After sailing a Pearson Rhodes 40 with a tiller I decided unless my arms were to be like Popeye's I wanted a wheel. Autohelm works better too as I had one on my tillered Alberg 30 and now one on the wheel on the P39Y.
Just curious. Don't mean to hijack the thread.
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Old 13-03-2009, 19:52   #37
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After having owned one for shallow water sailing, my views are:

Pro:

You can reduce your draft when necessary. How much of a benefit this is, depends on your style and where you sail.

Con:

It's more complex and anything more complex is more prone to breakdown.
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I'm sure not all centerboard boats are as prone to breakdown as others, so I think its important to understand the particular model boat you are considering as well as what issues that particular centerboard may have.

Some potential problems:

1. board itself more likely to damage
2. housing which can be damaged with serious results that are hard to repair
3. failure of lower/raising mechanism or loosing the board all together.
4. Leaking into the boat through pivit bolt, inspection port or other open area.
5. Because much of the system is inside a housing, it can be difficult to repair, especially when cruising.

On my boat most all of these things were issues. The wood board became exposed and the leading edge was eaten by sea worms. The lowering mechanism became stripped and rope attached to it stretched out and slipped. The bolt where it pivited leaked in big seas or when sailing fast. (to the point, the bilge pump could barely keep up!)

I love to gunkhole and am a big fan of shallow draft boats, (at 4' 3", I think my newest boat is still too deep), but I'd think very carefully before buying a centerboard boat again. If you want a shallow draft without the centerboard in an affordable monohull package, consider some of the bilge keel boats out there. When I did my last boat search, I would have purchased a Westerly Berwick in a second if I could have found one. I also really like the Konsort as well, but beware of the one that comes up for sale again and again in Texas...
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Old 13-03-2009, 23:20   #38
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I don't like the wheel because it has no feel, is very slow to react, and is really painful to use. Everyone says a wheel is easier but I say no way. To me fighting a wheel is really hard on the arms wrists and hands. It's so much easier with a tiller when you can get your back involved as well as your arms. Also a lot easier on the hands pulling on the tiller rather than trying to hang onto a slipper wheel and turn it.

The Pearson came with a 28" wheel which takes quite a bit of force to move or hold at speed or powering. I went up to a 36" wheel which made steering physically easier but way more exhausting because of the large excursion of the wheel to change or keep a heading.

Another thing I hate about the wheel is you can't steer with your legs. I've done a bit of single handing and it was really easy, with a tiller, to steer with the legs while cranking on a winch or handling the main. With a wheel, you have to steer with one hand and try and do everything else with the other. Self tailing winches have made it easier to trim the headsail but still not easy as I can't get directly over the winch for power and still reach the wheel.

I once sailed a Westsail 32 at hull speed for 3 days single handed. If anyone knows a W32, they know they develop a very strong weather helm when driven at close to hull speed. I had no problems steering this boat with a tiller 24/7 for three days, except getting very looney with lack of sleep on the third day. When I sail with a wheel, I'm physically tired after only an hour or so and really mentally exhausted fighting the lack of feel and slow reaction.

Almost forgot, there is never a question which way the rudder is pointed with a tiller. That can be a problem when backing and filling maneuvering a boat in confined spaces. With so many excursions of the wheel from lock to lock in a short time, I've gotten 180 out with where I thought the rudder was pointing.

Aloha
Peter O.
Pearson 35.
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Old 15-03-2009, 20:29   #39
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Wheel and balance

To each his own, but i haven't had the problems you list. To get back on topic, I often use the centerboard (and the mizzen) to balance the helm. I find the feel OK and my autohelm will tack 90 deg as I do the winches. A wheel lock, non-slip coating on the wheel and a center helm mark on the wheel helps too.
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Old 16-03-2009, 17:50   #40
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My centerboard makes no noise at all, and really makes the boat go upwind, while still allowing a relatively shallow draft (5'/9'6") on a 42' boat. Synthetic pennant works very well.
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Old 19-03-2009, 03:03   #41
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i have sailed an ovni 385 and had no problems with the centerboard. the only thing i don't like is the rudder. why those ovni's don't have twinrudders like the southerly's do i don't understand.
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Old 21-03-2009, 10:55   #42
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We are building a new centerboard out of 2" thick UHMW plastic for our Maple Leaf 42, this is an indestructible material and nothing really sticks to it! We draft 7.5' down and 4' up - now preparing for our world tour Aug 1st 2010!
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Old 16-05-2009, 08:44   #43
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We added 70lbs of lead to the new UHMW centerboard as it's specific gravity is just a bit more than water, this will help hold the board down. We can add more or less if we choose - it works very well! We do not have any "klunk-klunk" noise (never have) when running our centerboard.
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Old 16-05-2009, 12:23   #44
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I will be very interested in hearing how the UHMWPE centerboard works out in practice,have you heard of others successfully using it for this application?
My experience with it (in other applications) is that it is not at all stiff, ie it will bend under side loading and not neccessarily return to straight when the load comes off, it is not thermally stable, this is probably not a problem when immersed in water but it can "grow" a lot in hot conditions like on the hardstand. This info is available from the manufacturer as a percentage, so obviously most growth is in the length. Im not sure you would have any problems with the expansion but im a bit concerned with the lack of stiffness.I hope im wrong as there could be many advantages.Please keep us informed as to how it works out in practice.
Steve.
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Old 16-05-2009, 14:54   #45
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Both my boards are 22mm alluminium, there is no noise at all with the main one but the aft one does quite a bit of clunking. they have uhmpwe strips to take any sliding wear and to supposedly stop any clunking. The aft board is generally only used when sailing down wind, at that point of sail the noise is not all that noticeable.
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