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Old 13-01-2012, 21:02   #1
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Boat Too Big

I may offend some of you with this statement, but I hate sailing. I am much more comfortable of a bass boat in my local lake. However, my wife is an avid sailor. I have been out with her before but really did not like it. I canít stand the feeling when the boat tips on its side while moving along. I think you call it heeling. Anyway, my wife wants a boat and I have agreed to get her one. She is the family expert and knows what she wants. I have some concerns about her choice though and want some input from others. She is looking at either a Fountaine Pajot 46 or a Lagoon 42. I am worried that is too much boat for her to handle. She is a very capable sailor and her plans include sailing the US East Coast and down to the Caribbean occasionally. (I would probably fly down to meet her). She typically sails alone and I am afraid that these boats are just too big to handle by herself. It should be that compare to my very narrow and flat 19 foot bass boat these are huge. I just donít want her to romanticize these boats and think she can handle more than is reasonable. My real question is whether it is reasonable for one person to handle these boats alone. If this is true what size boat should I try to direct her towards.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:13   #2
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IMHO- not knowing your wife's sailing skills it is impossible to answer your question. However, I would never call out my wife like that either....a little faith and support may be in order.

In fact, you should invite her to join our group! . You'll either come around to enjoy sailing or not.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:20   #3
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Re: Boat Too Big

I am not calling her out on anything. I just know how all of us get sometimes when we really want something. My first motorcycle was a Kawasaki K1. It was more bike than I could handle but i wanted it. I ended up spending three weeks in the hospital with a broken neck. I am sure if anyone can do it she can, but I am worried that it is just too big for anyone to handle alone.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:32   #4
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Re: Boat Too Big

You might want to read Steve Dashew's cruising encyclopedia, where he states large boats with power windlasses are easy to short hand. Also, on a cat, you won't be annoyed with being heeled over and more than likely you will sail with her rather than fly down to meet her. Most any boat, through the routing of the lines, can be short or single handed with ease.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:36   #5
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Re: Boat Too Big

I'm sure there are lots of sailors who would love to trade places with you.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:37   #6
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Re: Boat Too Big

I am also wondering if one of the reasons your wife is looking at buying a big cat is because they have minimun heel when compared to a mono-hull? I.E., she is thinking about you?
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:37   #7
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Re: Boat Too Big

Those are pretty big boats. Single handing anything over 40' is one of those deals where it's not so bad when the conditions are benign, but things can get out of hand pretty quickly and if it's just you, you, and you onboard there's a lot of boat to deal with.

Curiously, have you been on a multihull before? They don't really heel all that much (like less than a couple of degrees). Might be that's why she's opting for a catamaran if the heel thing really bothers you that much.

Ask her if she'd solo a 46' boat down the east coast and across the gulf stream. It's certainly done, and if she's an experienced sailor I suppose it's not crazy, but it certainly is eyebrow raising regardless.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:38   #8
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Re: Boat Too Big

Thank you Bob that was what I was looking for. I am always willing to try.

She likes to tease me for being afraid of a little water when I jump out of airplanes for a living.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:40   #9
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Re: Boat Too Big

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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post
You might want to read Steve Dashew's cruising encyclopedia, where he states large boats with power windlasses are easy to short hand. Also, on a cat, you won't be annoyed with being heeled over and more than likely you will sail with her rather than fly down to meet her. Most any boat, through the routing of the lines, can be short or single handed with ease.
Dropping the hook and scooting around the bay is one thing. Deploying a sea anchor off a bridle while heaving to in some nasty crap and being exhausted out of your mind is a whole different ball of wax. She's talking about offshore sailing, solo, on a 46' boat.

How is she even going to sleep rolling down the east coast with one watch stander?
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:40   #10
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Re: Boat Too Big

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I'm sure there are lots of sailors who would love to trade places with you.
Not a chance there. She is a keeper.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:45   #11
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Re: Boat Too Big

A 42+' cat is a big boat. My biggest is Boracay, at 44' in and 15 tonne in steel is too big for me to handle by myself. I'd consider it to be equivalent to a 38' (or slightly smaller) cat.

There are some smaller cats, but 38' would be the smallest that I would consider. Many long voyages have been made in smaller cats but I am not aware of any that have been made single handed.

My understanding is that catamarans need greater attention to sail trim and weather than monohulls as they do not give the feedback (heeling).

As you're flying down to join your wife why not compromise on the heeling and reconsider a monohull. Very seaworthy ones that would be suitable for single handing are available for much less than the cost of an equivalent cat.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:49   #12
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Re: Boat Too Big

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I am also wondering if one of the reasons your wife is looking at buying a big cat is because they have minimun heel when compared to a mono-hull? I.E., she is thinking about you?

After reading some on here about these boats I am thinking you might be on to something here. So would it be reasonable to have some inexperienced hack help out on the boat. Or would I just be more of a hinderance.

I really do want to share her passion, but it just scares the hell out of me. I know it is pretty pathetic and if any of my guys on the team hear about this I am through.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:58   #13
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Re: Boat Too Big

Hey I used to race at Daytona, Pocono, Louden, etc. If you can wheelie a K1 , break your neck and jump back on a bike, you can handle a ride on a Cat no problem. They don't lean that much and you should be fine. Beides your buddies may ride you pretty hard if they find out your wife has a bigger set then you, lol and you would let her sail that sucker down El Carib by herself. Just sayin.
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Old 13-01-2012, 21:59   #14
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Re: Boat Too Big

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After reading some on here about these boats I am thinking you might be on to something here. So would it be reasonable to have some inexperienced hack help out on the boat. Or would I just be more of a hinderance.

I really do want to share her passion, but it just scares the hell out of me. I know it is pretty pathetic and if any of my guys on the team hear about this I am through.
My guess is she will have you trained in no time. As you know in your profession, you don't need a parachute to skydive, you only need one if your going to skydive twice. I stole that from someone here.
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Old 13-01-2012, 22:09   #15
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Re: Boat Too Big

I have no idea why the heeling freaks me out so much. I guess I am just too much of a control freak. Oh well. Thanks for the input and I guess she is going to get a great anniversary present this year. I do think I should ask her if she is going that big because of me and see if we should go a little smaller. I should have known this day would come. She has me completely wrapped around her finger. I figure she has about three years to train me up locally. My 20 are up soon and I will be looking for something to do. I am not so sure I will survive being retired at 40 with nothing to do.

Are there classes that I could take to give me a little jump on the learning curve. I think it would be cool to have the boat for our anniversary and be able to surprise her with actually knowing a little bit.
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