A cautionary tale that actually occurred... A successful family
of Alaskan crabbers had a yard in Seattle
build 3 crabboats for them to use in the Bering Sea in a forthcoming crab season. There was the usual rush to get the vessels finished and launched to drive them north for the upcoming crab season. To meet the schedule, the yard required the paint crew to come in on a Sunday to finish off the painting chore.
The painting foreman checked the plans and chalked up the hulls to apply the bottom paint, boot stripe and plimsol lines and the crew went to work. Evidently, the paint foreman either misread or miscalculated the design drawings and painted the boot stripe higher than the design called for attempting to allow for the load of crab and pots.
The vessels left for Dutch Harbor, loaded their pots there and proceeded to the fishing
grounds. It was common practice to load pots until the water hit just below the boot stripe line. I know because I used to fish
those waters. One of the worst storms to hit the area in years blew in and all three vessels sank with a loss of all but a couple of crew on one of the boats.
It took several years of inquiries, investigation and countless months of heartache for the remaining family
members before the cause of this terrible accident
was finally figured out.
Although pleasure craft, sail or power may be cavalier about adjusting boot stripes to 'look good' underway fully laden for cruising, IMO you should be cautious about doing so. Phil