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Performance Cruiser - Shoal draft


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Bit of a dilemma.  Looking at Performance Cruisers to be based at Dinner Key Marina - Biscayne Bay.  The boat will be raced a few times a year - every other year for Caribbean 600 and then cruise, back in home port by June. 
 

Any thoughts on Max Draft or Min Draft for performance? Planning on 50ish footer.  I’ll need to sacrifice some Sail Area with a  shoal  draft keel  I’d like to keep the boat sporty though with SA/D above 21  

Boats in contention are -

X-4.9, Bavaria C50, Beneteau First 53’, Solaris 50  

A couple of these will have to have a custom keel made for Biscayne Bay and Bahamas  

Not too many larger performance cruisers in Biscayne Bay  to gauge what works  

Thoughts?  Thanks  

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, Bob Perry said:

I don't use the word "performance" in the same sentence as "shoal draft". If you want to go to weather well, one way or another you need a fin with span.

There is no substitute for draft.

 

I've often wondered how 'unbad' some of those big aluminium French centreboarders are. I keep hearing good things about them, but I really want to hear it from someone I know.

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3 hours ago, European Bloke said:
17 hours ago, Bob Perry said:

I don't use the word "performance" in the same sentence as "shoal draft". If you want to go to weather well, one way or another you need a fin with span.

There is no substitute for draft.

 

I've often wondered how 'unbad' some of those big aluminium French centreboarders are. I keep hearing good things about them, but I really want to hear it from someone I know.

 

Carter designed a series of lifting keel boats, and at one point centerboard boats did very well in offshore racing. It's true that they got a rating benefit which was changed because is it was obviously unfair <sarcasm alert> but the wind and the water haven't changed much since then. An Australian named Adams did another series of big fast centerboarders. Another configuration that seems to work well is a sliding daggerboard-style keel with a bulb.

It's just a question of designing it so it sails well, building it so it will stand up to hard sailing over time, and doing the maintenance to keep it working. A lot of the old production racer/cruisers have fallen down on this last thing (not the boats fault!) and given keel/centerboards a bad reputation.

FB- Doug

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17 hours ago, Bob Perry said:

I don't use the word "performance" in the same sentence as "shoal draft". If you want to go to weather well, one way or another you need a fin with span.

There is no substitute for draft.

 

I agree totally for what its worth - I have a First 40.7 shoal draft and I get my ass handed to me every time I go up against a First 40.7 with the deep draft.  Farr VPP has me slightly lower but same speed.  Not true in real life.  both boats have North 3Di and deep draft is higher and faster upwind.  I am maybe a little quicker downwind- but the upwind delta ensures I look at there transom the entire race.

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9 hours ago, European Bloke said:

I've often wondered how 'unbad' some of those big aluminium French centreboarders are. I keep hearing good things about them, but I really want to hear it from someone I know.

No experience on alloy French centreboarders sorry, but 'glass French swing keels I can vouch for. <2000kgs ballast with a 3m down and 1.2m up, it works really well. Finot Conq seemed to have got the engineering right for longevity and ease of use. It's been out in 40+ knots and big seas with too much canvas up, if you put your foot on the keel box you can feel the tension loading up. 

Beating In heavy air we're quicker than the First's, light air beating they kill me but that's more the hull form I would guess, not the keel.     

We tried lifting the keel a few times downwind, but as it is a swing keel it brings the weight too far back and drags the arse, so not quite the same as a centreboarder. 

 

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16 hours ago, shaggybaxter said:

No experience on alloy French centreboarders sorry, but 'glass French swing keels I can vouch for. <2000kgs ballast with a 3m down and 1.2m up, it works really well. Finot Conq seemed to have got the engineering right for longevity and ease of use. It's been out in 40+ knots and big seas with too much canvas up, if you put your foot on the keel box you can feel the tension loading up. 

Beating In heavy air we're quicker than the First's, light air beating they kill me but that's more the hull form I would guess, not the keel.     

We tried lifting the keel a few times downwind, but as it is a swing keel it brings the weight too far back and drags the arse, so not quite the same as a centreboarder. 

 

I didn't really mean Pogos…  I'm going to charter one of those from that place in Greece in a couple of years, once the kids are old enough to appreciate it.

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