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Old 09-10-2018, 13:22   #61
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Well, the Smeeton's Tzu Hang does come to mind...

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Ha! Well they did survive!
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Old 09-10-2018, 13:33   #62
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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I have spent the past several months combing over YW, Sailboatlistings, Craigslist, etc... and Using resources such as Bluewaterboats.org, to try and make an informed decision on the size and type of boat that I want... within my budget of course. I am currently looking for a 32-35' bluewater capable boat (Allied 32, 33, 35, Pearson 32, 35, Bristol 34, Westsail 32, etc...). These are at the top of my list, but there are other boats that have caught my eye, that aren't listed as "blue water boats" such as Endeavour 32, Islanders, Catalinas, C&C, etc.

I don't plan on a circumnavigation, but I would like to cross the Atlantic to Europe and the Mediterranean in about 7-10 years, and return a couple of years later.

My question is this: Do you NEED a blue water boat to make an occasional blue water passage? Or are "blue water" boats made to withstand continuous ocean passages. I would like to get the best built boat that I can afford, and I understand that I will probably have to put a LOT of sweat equity into any boat purchase in my initial price range ($10 - $20k).

I just want to make sure that I would feel confident in the boat to brave a crossing, or heavy seas.
-Harrison.
Hard to believe I have finally joined the forum, after reading here for more years than I care to admit!
Teddy's comment below simply put caused my anchor to drag and so here I am!

WingRyder, here are a couple of thoughts around your complete post question: 7-10 years is a long time lots can and will change. I assume you plan to live at dock side while you continue to follow a career? With this in mind I expect you are thinking to grow the lifestyle slowly, gain experience and venture out a little further till ready for that first sighting of no sighting of land.
Next issue you face in this OP is "confidence" which of course is not an item you can purchase with the purchase of a boat, in fact we know it is a trait that must be earned one wave, one mile and one foul weather experience at a time.
So the question as I see it is what has a proven platform for all the potentials as you see them now and over the next 10 years? And if possible choose the cards that can stack the odds in your favor.
Because you will likely live on the boat for some time (things change) you want volume below, not modern volume mind you we are likely talking before 1998.
So I think your odds will be found in the canoe body which may or may not be, what represents cheaper dock fees. I would go for the LWL and I would prefer lead ballast to other combinations. I would not go for a full keel, to difficult for these early harbor/marina years. I would certainly budget for surveys, without exception. I would add Cal to your list but most SS designs will offer good compromises to what your ideal boat needs are, for now.
Just an opinion.

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Originally Posted by TeddyDiver View Post
You obviously have no idea about the water color up here 70deg N

The first category you mention has nothing to do with blue water sailing. Instead it's called island hopping. Nothing wrong with that of course..
The latter two are both true blue water boats, just for different regions. No need for metal up here, actually wood is preferred by many..
Teddy
Teddy your post really took me by surprise. It seems to suggest that perhaps some potential kinetic force may result in a bounce off or back off a submerged something? Or that a wooden structure might just gouge not tare or burst from a submerged something? Or that a wooden hull structure might be easily and temperately repaired at sea with something as minimal as a 6mm pre epoxied sheet of ply, sealant and a few screws?
Or possibly suggesting that a wood hull can be scheduled to surpass steel and aluminium sailboat hull plating strength for less cost and weight?
Certainly not a popular truth these days
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Old 09-10-2018, 13:57   #63
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

Au contraire. Cape Cod to Ireland 1978 (full keel), Bermuda Azores/Lagos 1993 (fin and skeg).

Northern route is rough, foggy and not nice and making landfall off the Mizzen in Ireland was scary - one that I would not like to do again, even on a much bigger boat. Bermuda/Azores was fine. Got up to 50 knots at times but seas ok. I agree going east is more hit and miss. You can get a lucky weather window but it is very different from West bound.

Having said all that I'd pick a more modern hull shape, with it's speed inherent stability. that's just my preference and seems to work for me.

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I can tell you have never done the passage east to Europe, its the passage west that is easy, the passage east is on the westerlies, they are unreliable, sometimes there is no wind, and sometimes there is way too much wind, I have done it both ways, and the journey from Bermuda to Scotland is a very tough one, the worst it got was force ten, on the way west people even row it, and raft it, you won't do that going east, I shredded two jibs on the way, and my main sail was tattered by the time I arrived in Scotland. I also noticed that most of the boats leaving Bermuda had delivery crews, they told me that people do the run across the Atlantic East to West so that they can say they have done it, then get a delivery crew to take there boat back as they know how bad it can be.
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Old 09-10-2018, 14:27   #64
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

OP here. I wasn't prepared for 4 pages of responses in 16 hours! But this highlights the frustration I'm having with the "bluewater boat" conundrum. It's a concept that's hard to nail down, and each sailor has their own idea of what it means. At least that's my take away.

What separates a Cape dory 34 from an Islander 34, both being full keel, similar sail config, etc. It appears to be build quality. This is one reason that I like Allied, Pearson, Whitby, Cape Dory and Bristol. It seems to me that designers of these boat built them to be seaworthy. Perhaps, back in the 60's, people got caught in squalls more often, due to lack of satellite weather forecasting. Perhaps, they still had wooden boat paradigms, and simply overbuilt everything. I don't know.

It seems to me that boat builders, built to meet the needs of the 90%. Those that want to sail on the weekend and perhaps participate in a bit of racing. Some newer boat seem to be built from the ground up, as charter boats! But the 10% (or less) that plan to make multi-day passages, are SOL... OR they need to spend twice as much on an Island Packet or other purpose designed boat.

I don't know if this is a good analogy but, I used to do a fair amount of overland 4-wheeling when I lived in AZ. There are no affordable trucks manufactured for this purpose. You have to spend a fair bit of money upgrading any truck to meet the demands of rocks, river crossings and sand. Even Jeep wranglers are built for the 95%, that will commute in it to work, and perhaps take it on a dirt road, to a campsite, or skiing, a few times a year.

All that said. I still feel comfortable limiting my search to 'proven' blue water boats. Even though passages my only be 5% of the total experience, that 5% is also the most nerve-racking! I think I would only feel comfortable on a boat that I KNOW can take a little pounding and survive. I am no thrill seeker, and of course I would avoid bad weather at all cost. But S#!t happens. Even with the sophisticated Nav/Weather aids now available, forecasting is still more art than science.

Okay, I'm rambling... I don't have time to respond to some of the individual posts, that I would like. My 3yo is demanding my undivided attention. I just didn't want you all to think I posted and left. I am reading replies and have a lot of questions to post in a day or so.

Thanks for all the replies!
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Old 09-10-2018, 14:35   #65
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

If you plan the Med, make sure you buy a ship that backs up easily (ie: rather fin keel, long rudder and powerful engine). Also stern cockpit is much better than center cockpit as it makes manœuvres easier. Additionnelle stern cockpits are usually larger than center cockpits. A nice feature in warm weather.
Good luck!
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:05   #66
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Originally Posted by Hardhead View Post
In my opinion, I consider a blue-water boat to be a boat that can handle all that the sea can reasonably throw at it, assuming proper seamanship.

Almost any sailboat can cross the Atlantic in fine weather, but not all can handle 2 weeks of heavy bashing trying to do it. A blue-water boat is designed for that possibility, a non blue-water boat is not.
Those boats on the Golden race are not by your parameters bluewater boats? look what is happening to them. No boat can handle all that the sea can throw at it and I don't understand how the reasonably come on the equation.

Reasonably most sailboats over 27ft can sail bluewater, the skipper is a very important factor but obviously some boats can survive conditions others can't and ships can survive conditions that no boat can survive.

Size is an important factor (bigger boats have more stability), maybe the major factor, toughness of the boat and good building also but let's not forget that most boats that are abandoned on stormy conditions are not sinking. They are abandoned because the crew cannot take it anymore and it is afraid that the boat eventually sink.
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:09   #67
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Originally Posted by thomm225 View Post
Actually, not quite everyone has moved on from the full keel boats for ocean crossing or RTW sailing

At least eighteen people were still using them when this race started:

https://goldengloberace.com/

And it looks like eight are still in use. https://goldengloberace.com/livetracker/

The four lead boats are sailing the Rustler 36 (Full Keel)

RUSTLER 36 sailboat specifications and details on sailboatdata.com
And they have an abandon rate bigger than circumnavigation races that are made on modern much faster boats.
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:15   #68
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Originally Posted by Chalifour View Post
If you plan the Med, make sure you buy a ship that backs up easily (ie: rather fin keel, long rudder and powerful engine). Also stern cockpit is much better than center cockpit as it makes manúuvres easier. Additionnelle stern cockpits are usually larger than center cockpits. A nice feature in warm weather.
Good luck!
Jacques
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.
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:18   #69
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pirate Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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And they have an abandon rate bigger than circumnavigation races that are made on modern much faster boats.
Well they would be faster.. they twice or more as long.
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:24   #70
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Well they would be faster.. they twice or more as long.
Not necessarily those. Several 40 class racers also circumnavigated, some non stop, the abandon rate was very low and they were hugely faster.
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:30   #71
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Hmmm... when ten out of eighteen have dropped out before even reaching the Horn, and two have been rolled, it is hard to use this example as proof of a design genre's capabilities.

And do note that the reason that these designs are in this race is because Don McEntire (the promoter) REQUIRED that the entries were from a short list of designs that HE put together... and they were all full keel boats.

Sailing, let alone racing in those waters is demanding of a higher level of seaworthyness and seamanship than anything the normal cruiser will do, even those who do end up circumnavigating.

Jim
Many dropped out due to equipment failure such as broken wind vanes etc and not problems with the boat's design as you know.

You also know that the two boats that got rolled were in one hell of a storm.

So what exactly is your point?

Are you saying a boat like Ken's above could have handled the storm that the two boats in the race got rolled in?
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:32   #72
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Originally Posted by Steve 3 View Post

WingRyder, here are a couple of thoughts around your complete post question: 7-10 years is a long time lots can and will change. I assume you plan to live at dock side while you continue to follow a career? With this in mind I expect you are thinking to grow the lifestyle slowly, gain experience and venture out a little further till ready for that first sighting of no sighting of land.
Next issue you face in this OP is "confidence" which of course is not an item you can purchase with the purchase of a boat, in fact we know it is a trait that must be earned one wave, one mile and one foul weather experience at a time.
So the question as I see it is what has a proven platform for all the potentials as you see them now and over the next 10 years? And if possible choose the cards that can stack the odds in your favor.
Because you will likely live on the boat for some time (things change) you want volume below, not modern volume mind you we are likely talking before 1998.
So I think your odds will be found in the canoe body which may or may not be, what represents cheaper dock fees. I would go for the LWL and I would prefer lead ballast to other combinations. I would not go for a full keel, to difficult for these early harbor/marina years. I would certainly budget for surveys, without exception. I would add Cal to your list but most SS designs will offer good compromises to what your ideal boat needs are, for now.
Just an opinion.
Steve, Thanks for your reply. I would like to clear a few things up. I am a flight attendant, so I can commute to work from anywhere.... i.e., Aruba is a 3 hour plane ride to my base, in Florida. Secondly, I can take as much time off as I can... well, afford. A good example is right now, I have worked one 3-day trip since August 28th, and I don't go back to work until 19 October. If I need a big block of time off, I can easily arrange it.

So my plan is to get my 'retirement boat' by spring 2019. If I get the wrong boat, I will have to live with it. I'm a pretty spartan guy, my needs are simple, so I'm more concerned about durability than comfort. I actually WANT a boat that needs some work, so getting something like an old classic Allied Seabreeze, really appeals to me.

At any rate, I will spend the next 7-10 years, sailing, gaining experience and confidence in the Caribbean, and upgrading the boat. I may never make an ocean crossing, but that is my goal for now. If any of that changes, so be it. It wouldn't be the first time my fortunes have reversed.

I think I'm well suited for a life on the water. I have never liked being in one place for more than a year or two, but I HATE moving! I lived in an RV for 5 years, and that was the happiest time of my life. If you are bored with where you are, you are on the road in an hour!
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:34   #73
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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And they have an abandon rate bigger than circumnavigation races that are made on modern much faster boats.
Due to equipment failure not a failure of the boat itself.

Nice spin though
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Old 09-10-2018, 15:51   #74
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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Sure the med can be rough but my point was it's not like the southern ocean. Like anywhere you plan your passages and pick and window and go.

Same with East to West in the Atlantic. Leave Canaries mid/late November, go due south until 200 miles north of Cape Verde and then start going west (ie around 10 degrees north). Cutting the corner and going direct from Canaries can get you into bad weather.

On the biggest boat you can afford - buy the boat to suit your intended sailing whether that's short handed or fully loaded, but if you think you will need a little more space then go for it, provided you can manage it with the crew you have. You can't make more space later on.

Agreed on the full keel. No need for these designs any more. They had their time and we've moved on with design and manufacturing techniques.
Of course we tacked south, down almost to the Cap Verdes before turning west. I have done this trip four times and three were very rough. These are the typical conditions on that passage.

To the boat headed to Scotland, you must have taken the northern route. When I sailed so Ireland, Scotland and England I went via the Azores. I have gone Caribbean and East coast U.S. to the Azores three times and it has always been benign.

BTW: Very few cruisers go down to the Southern Ocean. B23iL23, have you sailed any of these legs? Have you sailed the Southern Ocean?
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Old 09-10-2018, 16:10   #75
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Re: What EXACTLY is a "blue water boat"?

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To say that is one of the worlds roughest passages is just crazy, I was in the merchant navy for twenty years and that journey on any ship, is a milk run, try the northern route east to west, or routes across the north sea, the baltic, I don't know where you get that as being one of the toughest routes, its a route for retired weekend sailors that want to say they have crossed the Atlantic.

Well, atlantacal merchant marine is not sailing. Sailing is usually trade wind sailing and to go west in the North Atlantic you need to go south to pick up the trade winds. The shipping routes are probably great circle routes that take you through the Bermuda-Azores high which is very easy going.

Merchant Marine means large ships with large engines.

Tell us about your SAILING from Europe to the Americas. What route did you choose. How did it go?
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