View Poll Results: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

Voters
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  • 27-29ft

    8 5.06%
  • 30-32ft

    13 8.23%
  • 33-35ft

    28 17.72%
  • 36-38ft

    43 27.22%
  • 39-41ft

    19 12.03%
  • 42-44ft

    47 29.75%
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Results 1 to 10 of 84
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    up North
    Posts
    371

    Default Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    I'm looking for a broad range of views from forum members on the longest cruising yacht for a single-handed sailor assuming that sailor has average skills, not a seasoned professional. All input greatfully received.

    Thanks
    My Macwester Malin website, blog & photobank http://macwester.wordpress.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    5,242

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    I find that sporty yachts become unmanageable over about 45-50' (spinnakers are altogether out of the question much over 30' IMHO). That said boats with slab reefing, multiple sail controls, no side thrusters, etc will leave you in a pool of sweat entering or departing harbours! A reliable autopilot is an absolute must (plenty of spares must be carried offshore)

    Fully gizzmoed up boats like Discoverys Oysters, etc are fine up to about 70', but if anything goes wrong you will need a support boat - even taking a tow would be a nightmare!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    up North
    Posts
    371

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    dom: Thanks for your reply. I hadn't considered adding an option over 44ft. Perhaps that was a bit short-sighted of me.

    If any other forum members want to vote for bigger than 44ft, please just leave a reply quoting a number.

    Thanks again!
    My Macwester Malin website, blog & photobank http://macwester.wordpress.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    32,180

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    length is not a good determinant of suitability of single handing, so the answer has to be 42-44 (or as Dom says, even bigger). There are some boats in your smallest category which are hopeless for single handing.

    What size boat is suitable for you depends on your type of sailing, the configuration of the boat, particularly in relation to stability a balance, and the way that the sail handling gear is arranged. The biggest problem with length/size is parking the thing, but once you get past that, size is less of an issue, and in some ways bigger is better as generally stability is greater.

    I have been single handing for 30 years in an old style 26' and a 37' AWB and leaving aside the parking bit, the latter is easier under sail because it is directionally stable and everything can be done from the cockpit.

    If you asked the question as "what is the most common size for single handers" to help you make your choice, then it would likely be in the 30-40' range, partly for economic reasons, partly because that is the range where there is most choice, and boats of that size usually have the sort of capability, both sailing and living that meet most needs.
    Last edited by Tranona; 03-06-15 at 18:08.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Hants
    Posts
    2,797

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    Provided you can get the sails up or have power assist almost any size will do when sailing.

    It's when it comes to parking the goliath that you start to wonder.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Gone cruising
    Posts
    2,143

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    Berthed next to a friendly ozzie couple in Dieppe and they gave us a tour of their boat: http://www.svkatherine.com/

    They're sailing an X-65 between the two of them, with one often resting below on passages, so effectively single-handed. Including flying a spinnaker (they're racing that thing). Of course it helps that everything is electrified and controllable from an iPad. But with those toys, a even a 65 footer is no problem - not even at the dock (there's bow and stern thrusters, remote controlled of course).

    If you don't have toys you have to know tricks. I can recommend Duncan Wells' book on that: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stress-free-...dp/1472907434/

    Edit: I'd say, pick the size boat you need, then learn to handle it well rather than restricting yourself to a too small boat because you're worried about the handling.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    up North
    Posts
    371

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    Tranona, Daedelus, and Yngmar: Thanks very much for your thoughts.

    As parking the boat is typically an inherent part of the process of going cruising, I’m thinking that leaving that aside for a moment is fair enough …that is apart from just before you’re coming into a crowded marina. Right about then, being on a smaller boat would be a better proposition.

    Power winches and electrical aids all add to the cost, but then that probably isn’t critical if you’re purchasing a sixty-five-footer. So to be clear, I’m thinking sub-500k well-made cruising yacht, rather than a sixty-five-footer crammed with power toys.

    I guess it’s about reaching a balance that you’re comfortable with both physically and mentally. It’s about having a yacht that you know you can park when you’re out on the water, so that you can enjoy your time out there, rather than being stressed and fixated on how you’re going to get into port. That’s what I’m trying to understand via the poll; it’s both sides of the equation – sailing and parking.
    My Macwester Malin website, blog & photobank http://macwester.wordpress.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Lancashire
    Posts
    1,374

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    [QUOTE=Yngmar;5324589]...If you don't have toys you have to know tricks. I can recommend Duncan Wells' book on that: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stress-free-...dp/1472907434/...

    Seconded, that is one good book!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    5,242

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    BTW, locks are a nightmare single handed without thrusters on anything much over 30' - no two ways about it! You can try the springing malarkey, but if anything goes wrong ...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Northern Ireland
    Posts
    11,478

    Default Re: Poll: Longest cruising yacht for single-handed sailors?

    I know someone who single hands a 70+ foot boat but it is aerorigged.

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