WingRyder Has said that he already made up his mind, he's going with the full keeled traditional option. That's fine. But just for discussion, what constitutes a "blue water boat" is more a matter of personal preference.
Originally Posted by fxykty
“Bluewater” means lots of things but generally means capable by virtue of its design and build to withstand larger seas and stronger winds found offshore
I agree with that quote. For the price range the OP was considering, there are a lot of boats to choose from, particularly if you don't restrict yourself to what some people call "blue water boats"
The important thing is to get a strong (not necessarily heavy) boat in good condition.
Another poster had this advice, which is good advice: "Be sure that you have someone very knowledgeable, with you there, go thru the entire vessel, systems, fittings, rigging
, all pumps, engine
, ice box, generator
, winches, stove
, reefing system, marine head
out easy for holding tank
, bilges, etc, etc. stowage areas, fuel
and fresh water capacity, head
room in the down below spaces as well as leg room in the berths, comfort and ease of steering and handling sheets
and halyards in the cockpit
, chain, rode
, and windlass
." To that I'd add: a close look at the chainplates, rudder
, and keel bolts
, if any.
In other words, the condition and construction count more than the keel type.
For the money
the OP's willing to spend it is unlikely he'll find any boat where all of this is in perfect shape. So he should plan to put some more money
into upgrades, plenty of money, I'd guess. (Thomm would disagree, and he is proof it does not have to be cash intensive, but Thomm is unusual)
If he really wants to consider all types of boats, there were two good web sites already mentioned with lots of facts, written by experienced offshore
Nigel Calder and Chris Beeson https://www.yachtingmonthly.com/yach...atistics-30154
, "a yacht that can look after herself in a blow without constant attention; Speed, on various points of sail"
John Neal Mahina Expeditions - Selecting A Boat for Offshore Cruising
"The boat you choose should be safe, comfortable, well built, and ideally capable of fast passages"
I agree with almost all of what they have to say. Notice they both emphasize performance. But opinions do creep in. They don't really like the deep fin keel-spade rudder
I disagree with that. Here are my thoughts.
It is said that Fin Keel, lightweight modern boats are uncomfortable and have uncomfortable motion in a seaway. That is not my experience and I've sailed plenty of all types, from full keel cruisers to lightweight flyers. A moderate displacement
fin keel boat can have a nice ride. My boat is 43', weighs 16,000 lbs, and, silly us, we think it is very comfortable sailing or at anchor
It is also said that, "Modern fin keeled boats need to be sailed actively in similar conditions" No, a modern fin keel boat does not need to be sailed actively. On a wind-vane, on any point of sail, in pretty much any conditions, they look after themselves just fine. On our boat, our watch standing means sitting under the dodger
, watching, not actively sailing in calm or rough weather
John mentioned, "deep, high aspect keel may exhibit a lack of steering directional stability when ocean swells are present". No, they do not lack steering directional stability. The fin keel/spade rudder will react instantly and easily to rudder inputs, such as from a wind vane
or an autopilot
, or of course, the helmsman's input. Any boat can get tossed by big waves, the fin keel-spade rudder boat will be back on course in seconds, not wallowing in a trough after a broach.
Another claim: "a heavier boat with a well immersed forefoot will not leave the water so readily and so doesn’t slam like a lighter boat." Maybe true, but the heavy boat with weight in the ends will drive it's bow deep into the next wave, may come to a complete stop, then rise up dramatically. I'm not sure that is a more comfortable ride.
And then there are some other commenter's who support the performance type of boats:
Originally Posted by Polux
And a boat that can sail well in light and heavy winds and most of all a boat with a very good upwind ability because that's the point of sail that you will be sailing most of the time.
Originally Posted by Don C L
I have a friend who delivers boats all over the world and he has his criteria based on his experience. Surprisingly he does not look down his nose at too many boats, but he will flatly say, “that boat is not prepared to cross an ocean” by looking at how it is equipped.
Some people cite "safety" as a reason for having heavy, full keel boat. but here are some reasons why that may not necessarily be true:
Originally Posted by Don C L
the (long keel) boats that capsized did so because they could not prevent a broach while running and were not employing drogues that could hold the stern up.
Going downwind in my long keel boat in steep seas is its Achilles heel and it can be a work-out to keep her on her feet, but there are ways.
And you have to consider the speed of the passage
. On a downwind or reaching course the speed difference between a full keel and a lighter, fin keel, boat may not seem that much. but 25 miles a day is 250 miles in a ten day passage
. AND, if you are going to weather
(as we all must do at times)...
I hate it they won't point when I was used to boats that could point 30 degree or so off the wind instead of 60-70 degrees
The distance made to windward in a fin keel boat may be twice what a full keel boat can do. Two examples: I was cruising in company with friends on very nice full keel boats on two different offshore passages, going against the prevailing wind. In both cases they simply had to give up and motor
or divert to another destination
Finally, there are some views we can just discount because they are obviously not interested in facts:,
Its not often I see so much rubbish posted on a thread on cruiser forums...for a small boat, you need a full keel, and a strong hull
thirty day passage, in which they will encounter force eight gales daily, with anything up to the odd force ten, get the right boat. full keel, heavy rig, heavy boat, the older ones are better, as the hulls tend to be thicker
So, I know I'm not about to change anyone's mind on this, but I do think some things have to be said.
Fredrick Roswold, SV Wings, Mexico
Serendipity 43, Around the world double handed. 55,000 miles. 8' fin keel, spade rudder, D/L 182 SA/DISPL 26