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Old 06-08-2013, 12:41   #1
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What Specs Should I Focus On

I am shopping for a retirement boat for me and my wife. The plan is to live on it for extended periods, leave the marina for extended periods but not to round the cape or circumnavigate. I want below deck space. I want to feel stable at 20-25kts or more. I want to go reasonably fast but not race.

I am trying first to nail down the type of boat I want before finding the particular one. I will probably end up with a production boat due to costs. I sail a Hunter 33 now and have no problem with Hunter but the 33 is not what I want. Looking in 40-45 range.

Here is question. I become fixated on specs like Disp/length, ballast ratio etc. but should I? I have ruled out some models because the Disp/length was in the 160 range rather than pushing 200 or more. Am I on a reasonably correct path here or am I wrong? I know that how the boat actually sails and feels to me will carry the day but I need a means to narrow the field down to a manageable size.
Thanks in advance
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Old 06-08-2013, 13:18   #2
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Re: What specs should i focus on

My take is that the budget will be the biggest dictate of actual boat - and that at 40 - 45 feet especially then pretty much anything will do the job, as long as you miss out the extremes at each end (racing sled that needs a crew of 12 and needs to be sailed on the edge - or summit bizarre like Ferro cement made in 1972 by a fella who owned a cement factory, and who was not shy about using the stuff - but stable with it, and just getting into her stride in a F12!)..........and that therefore the choices will be largely around personal taste (on looks) and usage (on layout and modcons).

If you throw out a few models I am sure folks will give their feedback, at least to say that in the ballpark - even if some may disagree vehemently on boat choice because not same as their own!
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Old 06-08-2013, 13:39   #3
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Well, currently near the top is the Catalina 42 MKII and the Hunter 430. My list changes a lot. If I win the lotto tonight it will change even more.

Take these two for example- the capsize screening ratio for the Hunter is 1.95 and for the Catalina it's over the all important 2 level at 2.02. Should I care? Does this small difference matter?

Before the CSR I was focused on the Disp/length. Yet to come will probably be the angle of vanishing stability.
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:02   #4
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Re: What Specs Should I Focus On

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Take these two for example- the capsize screening ratio for the Hunter is 1.95 and for the Catalina it's over the all important 2 level at 2.02. Should I care? Does this small difference matter?
With the kind of sailing that you're planning to do, no.

You're looking at sort of normal, mid-level kinds of boats. I would only look at the numbers as a way to eliminate extreme outliers. That is, if you come across a boat that you're not familiar with, look at the numbers, and find that it has a D/LWL of 140 and an SA/D of 23, well, maybe that's telling you that this is a fairly extreme racing boat and not really what you're interested in.

I would not even bother looking at the numbers for the many Hunters, Catalinas, Beneteaus, and Jeanneaus that are out there. They are all going to be close enough that it won't make any real difference between them. Between these kinds of boats the deciding criteria should be things like price, condition, features, and so on.

Good luck.
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:11   #5
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Re: What Specs Should I Focus On

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Originally Posted by Land an View Post
Well, currently near the top is the Catalina 42 MKII and the Hunter 430. My list changes a lot. If I win the lotto tonight it will change even more.

Take these two for example- the capsize screening ratio for the Hunter is 1.95 and for the Catalina it's over the all important 2 level at 2.02. Should I care? Does this small difference matter?

Before the CSR I was focused on the Disp/length. Yet to come will probably be the angle of vanishing stability.
This isn't the best place to get legit answers. The Internet experts love to analyze these numbers but in reality, the stability of any boat is dependent on a laundry list of other considerations.

Sail both of them, if possible in different conditions, and choose based on what you like best, not some computer jockey pretender.
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:59   #6
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Re: What Specs Should I Focus On

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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
I would not even bother looking at the numbers for the many Hunters, Catalinas, Beneteaus, and Jeanneaus that are out there. They are all going to be close enough that it won't make any real difference between them. Between these kinds of boats the deciding criteria should be things like price, condition, features, and so on.

Good luck.
Whilst I have no real idea what all these numbers mean , nonetheless I get a feeling they might be important , at least to OP (no criticism meant by that - it is vital that folks have confidence in any boat bought, and having doubts on anything (whether valid or not) is not a good way to start)......therefore what I would do in OP's shoes is find out the numbers for the boats mentioned in the sizes required and built for the family market and use that spread as my ballpark.......not to say that will exclude all boats outside the numbers, but at least lets you know that a good idea to consider more carefully / ask advice.

Likely will find that the most difficult thing is locating a boat at the right price, in the right condition and at the right time - same as for everyone else!

and for use (including not going upside down etc!) will find that the Skipper (aka you) makes the biggest difference in overall boat "safety" terms.....ain't no boat 100% idiot proof, even if some more forgiving than others.

Also good advice to sail a few different boats, they all do much the same - but some suit each better than others, especially if short handed.
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