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Old 04-11-2018, 11:45   #16
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Stu Jackson's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Cowichan Bay, BC (Maple Bay Marina)
Posts: 9,610
Re: Flybridge, maybe not that bad

Originally Posted by ed91e View Post
It will be mainly sailed short handed for longer trips.

Pro’s and cons?

Whenever I look at boats, I ask two questions:
1. How easy is it to get to the dipstick to check the oil level?
2. How easy would it be to dock the boat singlehanded without any help from either the boat side or dock side?

The old "what happens if your crew is sick?" is, to me, a not unreasonable question.

I singlehand a lot, so easy access to the equipment and tips&techniques for singlehanded docking are foremost in my mind. My aft cockpit 34 footer is easy. A center cockpit, to me, would not be as easy but I am sure folks do it all the time. I see gorgeous motor yachts, but even with midship doors, unless there is easy access to the throttle when docking, it seems it would be difficult. I see many motor yachts, usually smaller ones, with engine controls inside, duplicates on the flybridge, and also on the aft bulkhead, which makes eminent sense to me.

I am also not the spring chicken I used to be. Spring? maybe. Chicken? usually!~!~ But when your knees start telling you certain things, you may begin to question going up and down even a few stairs all the time. I am not so good on stairs anymore, but I sure can still run my boat. Th handholds going down my companionway steps are extremely good. When I broke my leg skiing in 2009, when I got back on the boat after 3 months of recuperation, it was easier to get around on the boat than it was at home! True.

The point about winch locations and access, I believe, is critical.

When all is said and done, though, personal preferences and experiences that other people have can only be anecdotal in this particular case.

Another "issue" is navigation and instrumentation. The idea of having repeating instruments down on the main level has a certain attraction to it, vs. having to go up to the wheel for the basics: chartplotter and autopilot. Does it really make sense to have to go upstairs to tweak the autopilot? I'm sure remotes are available.

I recommend thinking about ALL of the ergonomics involved before you make the decision. Plus, you also have to love the REST of the boat's fittings.

Good luck. Remember, when all is said and done, it will be "your choice, your boat."
Stu Jackson
Catalina 34 #224 (1986) C34IA Secretary
Cowichan Bay, BC, SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)
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