Cruisers Forum
 


Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on Cruisers Forums. Advertise Here
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 09-03-2021, 18:29   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Toronto
Boat: C&C 30
Posts: 91
Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

I was wondering if anyone out there knows why there has been such dramatic and industry wide shift away from fuller keels with more comfortable but narrow hull shapes in the pre 1980's to the fast, voluminous, but pounding shape of modern boats. I mean it's not like the cruising destinations are different. It's not like sailing is any different. And it's not like people can't afford to buy one kind or the other (even though bolt on has become more economical - people are still spending 2 million dollars on a new Amel 60, for example). So why has the shift been so complete and virtually unanimous?
Emoyeni is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 18:37   #2
Registered User
 
Sailmonkey's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Houston
Boat: '76 Allied Seawind II, 32'
Posts: 8,688
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Because a boat that sails well to weather and is fun to sail is......fun to sail.

Weve got an old heavy full-ish keel boat, and Id love to have something that was fun to tack.
Sailmonkey is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 18:38   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 314
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Surely the market is for voluminous short-term charter boats and round the can fun boats. Fast light manoeuvrable and 'cheap'.
Not much market for slower comfortable passagemaking boats.
NevilleCat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 18:40   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Southport CT
Boat: J/36
Posts: 1,748
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Racing rules have a big impact on what people think are the cool boats to own. People also like the voluminous spaces. Even boats that aren't racers are designed to look like they are, with as many double cabins as possible. To do to that as inexpensively as possible you build wide and light, and slap on a bulbed fin keel. Voil.
psk125 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 18:41   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Toronto
Boat: C&C 30
Posts: 91
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailmonkey View Post
Because a boat that sails well to weather and is fun to sail is......fun to sail.

Weve got an old heavy full-ish keel boat, and Id love to have something that was fun to tack.
Well didn't people care about having fun in the 60's? Why didn't they build faster big boats previously? I don't understand why the shift has been so massive...
Emoyeni is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 18:45   #6
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Little Compton, RI
Boat: Cape George 31
Posts: 1,778
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Marketing, mostly.
Fads.
Designers needing to eat, so designing new things.
Newbies listening to brokers who have to move old IOR boats.
__________________
Ben
zartmancruising.com
Benz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 18:52   #7
Registered User
 
u4ea32's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Los Angeles and Maine
Boat: Olson 40
Posts: 320
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

The topic mentions keel, but the OP mentions also the total hull shape, beam and volume distribution.

The non-racing boats, both sail and power, are today designed to provide the most internal volume within a given marina slip. The racing sailboats are entirely shaped by racing rule.

The OP is correct that modern racing boats are certainly faster than old racing boats. But for certain, the new non-racing boats, monohull or multihull, are certainly pigs related to yachts that are actually designed to sail rather than pack house-like living volumes into a marina slip.

My boat is a 1983 Olson 40 with a bulb keel (so rail meat not required). I am certainly faster, in any condition, than a modern non-racing boat even up to about 60 feet overall, especially in big seas or light air. Also, the Olson 40 with narrow beam, narrow waterline beam, and very balanced waterlines (almost symmetrical fore and aft) pitches dramatically less than the fat ass / narrow bow pigs of today. It's not even close, it's quite remarkable.

Balanced shapes (fine bow, fine stern) instead of unbalanced shapes (narrow bow, fat stern) certainly move nicer, faster, and more comfortably through the water. Such boats do exist, even if they are almost none being built new today.

The problems with full keels include 1) much more wetted surface, so slower in any condition and much slower in light air, so one needs to use the engine much more, 2) Much worse lift to drag of a long (low aspect ratio) keel compared to a deep (high aspect ratio) keel, and the pointing angle you can achieve is 100% driven by lift to drag, and 3) Full keels, especially those with a lot of "filet" or fairing between the canoe body of the hull and the keel, results in a lower center of buoyancy, and that leads to less displacement and more rolling and pitching, hence a LESS COMFORTABLE ride at sea.
u4ea32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 19:08   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Tampa Bay
Boat: 1998 Catalina 320
Posts: 83
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

I used to own a 1974 Bristol 30, long keel with centerboard. As long as you could live with a 30 degree heel, it could handle any weather. I once hit 7.5 knots in a blow. But on a cruise, we were averaging maybe 4.5 knots, less when the wind was light. The wheel was a wrestling match when the sail was not exactly right.



Now we own a 1998 Catalina 320, wing keel. I can reach 6 knots in 10 knots of wind and 7.5 knots in the mid to upper teens. Sails flat with little weather helm and isn't bad with too much sail up. Points much better than the Bristol. But it can get stopped dead with a short, steep chop to windward.



Frankly, the biggest game changer is below. The Bristol was like living in a closet with an icebox and an alcohol stove. The Catalina is a studio apartment with a fridge and a gas stove/oven.



That means my wife didn't like long trips on the Bristol; she will cruise for weeks in the Catalina. Case closed.
Shanachie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 19:55   #9
Registered User
 
sailingabe41ds's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Channel Islands, CA
Boat: Jeanneau 41 DS
Posts: 292
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

If you have a partner...in my case a wife...the expectations is to have a floating condo with all the comforts of home and sailing is an added bonus. No way would my wife ever go for one of those older, narrow, out of date interior boats. Ohhhhh.... nooooooo.... we had to get that contemporary clean looking condo on the water sailboat. Now she is looking at luxurious motor boats....thank God we can not afford that.

IMHO

Abe
sailingabe41ds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 21:17   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Bellingham
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 8,791
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emoyeni View Post
I was wondering if anyone out there knows why there has been such dramatic and industry wide shift away from fuller keels with more comfortable but narrow hull shapes in the pre 1980's to the fast, voluminous, but pounding shape of modern boats. I mean it's not like the cruising destinations are different. It's not like sailing is any different. And it's not like people can't afford to buy one kind or the other (even though bolt on has become more economical - people are still spending 2 million dollars on a new Amel 60, for example). So why has the shift been so complete and virtually unanimous?
The older designs are not more comfortable. They tend to have long overhangs that hobby horse in seas. They have little initial stability, so spend their sailing time heeled on their ear. They are slower, adding days to tough passages. They tend to be be shorter - longer boats have a better ride in large seas.

And yes, I have a fair amount of cruising experience in both types of hulls.
Paul L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 21:54   #11
Moderator
 
Jim Cate's Avatar

Join Date: May 2008
Location: cruising SW Pacific
Boat: Jon Sayer 1-off 46 ft fract rig sloop strip plank in W Red Cedar
Posts: 17,960
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

^^^^^

Wot Paul said!

I too have experience in a variety of designs, and my experience echoes Paul's.

I know that I'll never convince the traditionalists, but few of them actually have the breadth of experience to make meaningful comparisons between designs.

Jim
__________________
Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II, lying Sandy Bay, Hobart for a while.
Jim Cate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 22:05   #12
Registered User
 
chrisr's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Australia
Boat: Tasman 40' catamaran
Posts: 1,259
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

modern materials has got a lot to do with it too

designers and builders in the 60's could only work with what they had. they no doubt wished to build lighter boats but couldn't. modern materials allow all sorts of shapes that just could not be built in the olden days

in addition the application of computers and tank testing has replaced hand carved wooden models that just replicated the hulls that ones forefathers had built. we have learnt more about hull design in the last 30 years than in the previous 230 !

all adds up to modern yachts that are better in every way than the old half tide rocks that use to get around.

cheers,
__________________
"home is where the anchor drops"...green light from medics and travels resumed...heading somewhere warmer.
maintaining social distancing !
chrisr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 22:09   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 442
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
...I know that I'll never convince the traditionalists...
You've convinced me.
Full is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 22:10   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 442
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingabe41ds View Post
If you have a partner...in my case a wife...the expectations is to have a floating condo with all the comforts of home and sailing is an added bonus. No way would my wife ever go for one of those older, narrow, out of date interior boats. Ohhhhh.... nooooooo.... we had to get that contemporary clean looking condo on the water sailboat. Now she is looking at luxurious motor boats....thank God we can not afford that.

IMHO

Abe
Some call them swimming Ikeas.
Full is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2021, 22:42   #15
Registered User
 
TeddyDiver's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Arctic Ocean
Boat: Under construction 35' ketch (and +3 smaller)
Posts: 2,419
Images: 2
Re: Why have keel preferences changed for cruising boats?

I don't, prefer, so speak for yourself please..
And do not assume all modern being equall nor all long keels either..

But to the point. The biggest reason is the cost. For the same living space a wider, lighter modern boat is over half the price cheaper to produce compared to similar long keeler. End of story.
TeddyDiver is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
boat, cruising, enc, keel, references

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
opencpn mac crashes upon opening preferences evangorp OpenCPN 23 25-11-2018 02:45
Battery Brand Preferences? lifeofreilly57 Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 14 23-04-2018 11:41
Mac OS X - location of preferences / senc files Strolls OpenCPN 7 14-07-2015 01:30
Tachometer Sensor Preferences Rusty123 Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 3 12-11-2013 06:50
Design / Construction Preferences in an Offshore Cruising Cat Southern Star Multihull Sailboats 12 19-11-2010 16:42

Advertise Here


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:48.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.