If it was properly prepped, coated, painted and maintained, a well designed steel boat is STRONG. The only boat I know of that has been run down by a freighter and survived intact, was a steel boat designed by Pac Northwest designer
Brent Swain. Looked like a banana and the owner broke his arm but amazingly it popped right back up to the surface.
Since steel boats are so strong, and rigid, the interiors can pretty much be set up anyway you wish. My own 44 has 6'5 headroom
pretty much everywhere except the aft cabin
(because of the cockpit
above). That still leaves me with 250 plus gallons of fuel
and 250 plus gallons of water in the floor.. (Ted Brewer can design a cruising boat in steel
In any event, the answer to your question is headroom
varies with the design, not the material.
Regarding the Splendide washer/dryer unit, one thing to look out for is to make sure your genset puts out a good sine wave as opposed to the chopped square wavish signal you see out of some cheaper generator
heads, and lots of inverters. Oh, and get the vented version of the Splendide; it dries MUCH faster.
One other piece of advice, to put it somewhat less than delicately, in a seaway, *most* of the marine
heads on the market operate very much like a guillotine for *some* men
. I don't know why the manufacturers don't allow a little more room *forward*....as if the boat lurches and the seat moves...well, you get the picture, trust me- your husband will thank you for making sure you don't get one of those tiny seat models installed in the name of saving space. Same goes for flimsy seats that slide around.
As others have said, (and i'm sure that other owners might disagree) imho if you are going to get a larger boat, say 40 and up, and want furling
on the main as well as the headsails, get the in boom furling
on the main as opposed to in mast
. Simply put, you get better sail shape and if it hangs up, its down where you can work with it and you can still reef and furl manually until things improve to where you can fix whatever went wrong in better conditions. When an in mast
system hangs, it can really ruin your day, your cruise
, your....well...I hope you see my point.
Lastly, when looking at boats, be sure and get a full and complete inventory of sails
, and whether all the stuff is in good working order. Just a few hours of perusing a marine
catalog will get you in touch with how much money
you may have to spend to outfit your average coastal playboat for true blue water cruising and it can be a TON of money
above and beyond your initial boat purchase price
. This is why I and others strongly suggested that you look for a well equiped and maintained cruising boat that has already had these systems installed and debugged.
It will save you a fortune, not only in the initial price
, but in the money and time saved in actually getting you ready to *head out*...
Oh, another *almost*...last etc.
Like, Kan, and some others, I'm a fan of divided rigs. Not only do they balance better, they are more versatile, the stress on components is usually less, and you have more *options* available to deal with conditions. Remember, very few cruisers are out there switching sails
every hour, flying chutes, and pushing their rigs to the limit. Most are trying to get a good comfortable motion from their boat, and reasonable speed while minimizing shock, wear and tear to their rigs. Ketches can fly a lot of fun useful sails between the masts, or go without a main at all if there's a chance conditions might deteriorate suddenly. Plus most are 'pretty'
You'll also want to make sure that the tranny is equal to the main engine
. You have to understand the various ratings (continuous hp rating for instance) to make sure they match up. There are a lot more builders than there ought to be who attach the minimum possible rated transmission
to a good continuous rated diesel
. Simply put, its just a matter of time, and when that time comes, its always at the WORST possible moment
If you think you might like more speed and accomodations per foot, you might look at the cats, tho they seem presently to be more expensive; AND... make sure you ride a few in a seaway first before buying
Some like it, some don't.
In any event, some more things to think about. and we haven't even gotten to the ground tackle yet...