Ketches are nice rigs for long distance/shorthanded cruising because you can shorten sail in a variety of ways but still keep the boat well balanced on many different points of sail. The sail area is spread into smaller pieces, which makes them easier to handle. Modern rigs have made it easier to for small crews to handle large sails
, however, so ketches are not the only option.
Judging the suitability of the design for what you want to do, along with the condition of the boat, is an entirely different question. The boat was designed in '72 and completed in '80. Did it take 8 years for a homebuilder to put it together in his back yard? Or did a professional builder
take the design of an admired local naval architecture firm and create a masterpiece? I have never heard of Brandlymar before, but I don't get to the We(s)t coast much. Are they still in business? Did they design a lot of boats for water
sailing">blue water sailing? What sort of reputation do they have? What sort of reputation (if any) does the builder
have? Of course, you also have to find out what sort of condition the boat is in. Even the best design by the best builder can be in poor condition if it hasn't been taken care of properly: even a Rolls Royce will rust if it's left out in the snow & rain.
It sounds like you are starting to look for a boat that you want to be able to use for a long time. It would make sense to look around for a while first. There are a LOT of boats on the market now, with many owners eager to not have to pay winter storage fees
. You won't have time to see them all. For research
, however, you should perhaps look at a boat that might be optimal for what you want to do - maybe a Tayana 37
, for example - even if they are priced out of your range. It will have features you need for the type of sailing you say you want to do, and will enable you to compare other designs to one you "know" is suitable. Happy hunting!