Comfortable cruising at 10 knots on a budget?

doug748

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Fastest Contessa 32, 9 hours 4 mins.fastest small multi cruiser, 5 hours 47. Contessa weather, you’ll agree. If it was 15knots of wind, not 25 plus, the ratio would be much more.

No.

However, the central point is that the average speed, for the very best lightweight multihull, was c4.5 kts around a mixed course, in 25kts of wind. Somewhat less than the OP's slow trip to Studland Bay and lot less than that promised by some dreamers.

.
 

Neeves

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No.

However, the central point is that the average speed, for the very best lightweight multihull, was c4.5 kts around a mixed course, in 25kts of wind. Somewhat less than the OP's slow trip to Studland Bay and lot less than that promised by some dreamers.

.
Cruising and sailing is meant to be relaxing. As someone said circumnavigating is boring interrupted by short periods of simple fear.

To average 10 knots you have to be hitting peaks of 14 or 16. Sailing at that sort of speed you are sitting on the edge of your seat wondering will everything take the strain. Your dyneema sheets are as tight and hard as hi tensile steel - you cannot make any impression with a finger nail, or anything - its like rock. New noises develop from the rigging humming. There is water every where off the bow wave - you certainly don't go down below and make a coffee and a slice of toast.

To make the sort of speeds needed you would need crew, few people have the skills, courage nor strength to sail a monohull at such speeds, strength to change sails, remove sails when they are damaged etc. Do you really want to share and pay for your yacht with a bunch of gorillas. My guess is the yacht needs to be a 60' (stripped out retired racing yacht) mono or a 50' multi (Chiara might hone this a bit) - have you ever tried to take a 60' yacht short handed into a fuel dock in a restricted marina?

What ever breaks - things do break - would cost a fortune to replace.

Installing a storm jib and/or trysail would be a Herculean task.

But maybe the threat of orcas attacks would be reduced. :). - there have to be some upsides.

Jonathan
 

Neeves

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This only validates what has been said - that 10 knots is unrealistic

Lisa Blair Sails the World

If you scroll to the map she averaged just over 5 knots in a record attempt at sailing Auckland to Auckland. Admittedly you might sail faster if not single handed (but had the team of gorillas). Note her yacht is not particularly pedestrian and has all the bells and whistles (and the budget set by the OP is stg50k)

To average 10 knots you need a MoBo and big pockets, for the fuel.

Jonathan
 

Chiara’s slave

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No.

However, the central point is that the average speed, for the very best lightweight multihull, was c4.5 kts around a mixed course, in 25kts of wind. Somewhat less than the OP's slow trip to Studland Bay and lot less than that promised by some dreamers.

.
So, he went round a 60 mile course involving all points of sail, including 2 beats. In 6 hours. Even the Contessas did better than 4.5kn, but they do love a bit of wind. Al Wood averaged just over 10kn for the course, never mind the track though the water.
 

doug748

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Busted, I eyeballed the length of the course conservatively, I admit, but neither is it 60 miles, it is nominally 50 miles.

Top professional helm, top crew, top boat, fast conditions = 8.3 kts. Middle of the fleet more like 6 kts. Not the huge speed advantage advertised. The conditions are the same for all comers, tacking, upwind downwind etc is all part of sailing.
Personally, I would rather see figures from a day's racing than talk about one off, straight line speeds.

To borrow Neeve's remark above:
"This only validates what has been said - that 10 knots is unrealistic"

.
 
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westernman

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Chiara’s slave

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Busted, I eyeballed the length of the course conservatively, I admit, but neither is it 60 miles, it is nominally 50 miles.

Top professional helm, top crew, top boat, fast conditions = 8.3 kts. Middle of the fleet more like 6 kts. Not the huge speed advantage advertised. The conditions are the same for all comers, tacking, upwind downwind etc is all part of sailing.
Personally, I would rather see figures from a day's racing than talk about one off, straight line speeds.

To borrow Neeve's remark above:
"This only validates what has been said - that 10 knots is unrealistic"

.
The 50 miles is not allowing for tacking of course. Both Solent legs were to windward., that is over 20 miles of it. Which clearly makes the C32s quite impressive too. But it wasn’t a fast year, the wind direction was wrong for records. I’ve personally been round in less than 6 hours, by a whisker, the lead multihull did it in 2 hours 20 or something stupid. 2 million quids worth of boat, so let’s discount that for ordinary mortals.
 

flaming

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The RTI website claims the rhum line to be 50.1 miles. Last year we went round in 8 hours 2 minutes, which gives a 6.25 VMG average. Which given the start was into the tide until we were nearly at Yarmouth, and that Yarmouth to the Needles was the only bit of fair tide we had all day, I think was pretty good for a 32 foot monohull. Sadly not as good as other similar boats, but that's racing...

Through the water we must have averaged considerably faster. I actually did the timings on another thread. Needles to Bembridge took us 3 hours 25. The RTI website says that is 25.2 miles rhum line. So that's an average VMG of 7.2. Into the tide all the way. So maybe a VMG through the water average of somewhere around 9, Not sailing the direct course and doing a couple of gybes, so maybe close to 10 through the water average... We certainly hit peak speeds well into the teens frequently, with an 18.8 top speed for the day....

But that's pushing hard with a full crew and a big kite. In cruising trim you're not getting close to that without a considerably bigger (or wider) boat.
 

Snowgoose-1

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Good luck finding somewhere to park it.
14ft 6in draft.

Then good luck actually parking it.
No bow thruster.

And I am not sure the fit out can satisfy the comfortable criteria.

A fantastic amount of boat for the money. But running costs probably twice the purchase price per year.
😁
Totally impractable but would be fun finding out. Would probably require a good supply of incontence pants
 

ylop

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You will need to buy a motor boat or a RIB. Enjoy life at a slow pace and keep your current boat.
Having done both - it’s a very different experience from sailing. Even at 10 knots navigating becomes more intense than at 5. Actually just not bouncing/slamming around enough you can make a cup of tea might mean a boat that’s 20% slower is more “comfortable” than one that gets you there quicker.
Maybe the question needs to be rephrased to ask, what's the fastest monohull you can buy for under £50k that has a reasonable level of comfort for cruising?
I think your question is a bit odd!
The whole point of cruising is it’s about the journey and destination not the speed. Most cruising boats could probably improve their speed with fancier sails/rigging paying more attention to sail trim, emptying the lockers of 20 years of accumulated clutter, working the boat harder - but at the expense of comfort, wear and tear etc.

Reasonable comfort is also subjective - a head? A shower? A fridge? A freezer? Standing headroom in the saloon/galley? In the forepeak? A diesel heater? Hot water? Shore power? A sprayhood? Single line reefing? Hull design for interior comfort? Or for cutting through waves? A TV to watch something and can stay put when the weather is foul? A forward facing chart table? A hanging locker for wet kit so the whole boat doesn’t get soaked?
 

MisterBaxter

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I think your question is a bit odd!
The whole point of cruising is it’s about the journey and destination not the speed. Most cruising boats could probably improve their speed with fancier sails/rigging paying more attention to sail trim, emptying the lockers of 20 years of accumulated clutter, working the boat harder - but at the expense of comfort, wear and tear etc.
I absolutely agree - my question was more an attempt to rephrase the OPs question into something that could get a useful answer.
My own idea of a cruising boat is closer to Maurice Griffiths territory - something that can sail in a wide range of conditions with a comfortable motion and good course stability, easy to reef, cosy and pleasant to live on, good storage, comfortable beds, simple systems that I can maintain myself. And several good anchors and lots of chain and warp.
 
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flaming

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Having done both - it’s a very different experience from sailing. Even at 10 knots navigating becomes more intense than at 5. Actually just not bouncing/slamming around enough you can make a cup of tea might mean a boat that’s 20% slower is more “comfortable” than one that gets you there quicker.

I think your question is a bit odd!
The whole point of cruising is it’s about the journey and destination not the speed. Most cruising boats could probably improve their speed with fancier sails/rigging paying more attention to sail trim, emptying the lockers of 20 years of accumulated clutter, working the boat harder - but at the expense of comfort, wear and tear etc.

Reasonable comfort is also subjective - a head? A shower? A fridge? A freezer? Standing headroom in the saloon/galley? In the forepeak? A diesel heater? Hot water? Shore power? A sprayhood? Single line reefing? Hull design for interior comfort? Or for cutting through waves? A TV to watch something and can stay put when the weather is foul? A forward facing chart table? A hanging locker for wet kit so the whole boat doesn’t get soaked?
I don't think it's odd at all. It's a perfectly reasonable question.

I think a lot of people are often guilty of assuming that everyone derives pleasure from cruising in the same way that they do. That's really not the case, and plenty of people, seemingly including the OP, and definitely including me, get just as much fun from a really good double digit blast as we do from slipping up a river quietly under sail on the last of the sea breeze as the sun goes down.

To confidently state "The whole point of cruising is it’s about the journey and destination not the speed." as you did, just negates the fact that some people like going fast as part of cruising. Your experience, and preferences, are entirely valid, but they're also not the only way to enjoy being afloat.

To be clear you don't have to like going fast. But it's also wrong to claim that liking going fast is outside of the point of cruising.

So the question "I have £50k, what's the fastest boat I could buy that it wouldn't be absolutely awful to cruise" is a perfectly valid one.
 

Chiara’s slave

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The RTI website claims the rhum line to be 50.1 miles. Last year we went round in 8 hours 2 minutes, which gives a 6.25 VMG average. Which given the start was into the tide until we were nearly at Yarmouth, and that Yarmouth to the Needles was the only bit of fair tide we had all day, I think was pretty good for a 32 foot monohull. Sadly not as good as other similar boats, but that's racing...

Through the water we must have averaged considerably faster. I actually did the timings on another thread. Needles to Bembridge took us 3 hours 25. The RTI website says that is 25.2 miles rhum line. So that's an average VMG of 7.2. Into the tide all the way. So maybe a VMG through the water average of somewhere around 9, Not sailing the direct course and doing a couple of gybes, so maybe close to 10 through the water average... We certainly hit peak speeds well into the teens frequently, with an 18.8 top speed for the day....

But that's pushing hard with a full crew and a big kite. In cruising trim you're not getting close to that without a considerably bigger (or wider) boat.
The RTI race throws up a lot of anomalies, you could argue it’s not a particularly realistic scenario for cruising performance comparisons anyway. The early starters had contrary tide almost all the time, which happens often. If you set out to sail round for yourself, you’d have left at a different time. Later starters were more favoured. And rhumb line distances are never the story unless it’s a dead northerly or southerly wind. However, it’s what we have to work with. Most of the smaller multis will have had their usual cruising crew on board, I’ve done it about 6 times 2 handed. Another few with 1 extra.
As to cruising being all about the journey, I suspect we think alike. It’s about the journey being done well. We don’t reef to arrive later, we reef for safety and occasionally comfort. We trim sails, we push the boat as fast as she will go unless conditions dictate otherwise. No point in arriving after closing time if you don’t have to.
 

ylop

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I don't think it's odd at all. It's a perfectly reasonable question.

I think a lot of people are often guilty of assuming that everyone derives pleasure from cruising in the same way that they do. That's really not the case, and plenty of people, seemingly including the OP, and definitely including me, get just as much fun from a really good double digit blast as we do from slipping up a river quietly under sail on the last of the sea breeze as the sun goes down.

To confidently state "The whole point of cruising is it’s about the journey and destination not the speed." as you did, just negates the fact that some people like going fast as part of cruising. Your experience, and preferences, are entirely valid, but they're also not the only way to enjoy being afloat.

To be clear you don't have to like going fast. But it's also wrong to claim that liking going fast is outside of the point of cruising.

So the question "I have £50k, what's the fastest boat I could buy that it wouldn't be absolutely awful to cruise" is a perfectly valid one.
The question even as rephrased in your final paragraph really doesn’t make sense. I’ve cruised a wayfarer - as have many people, in that sense they are not absolutely awful to cruise but if those level of creature comforts are on the table then it opens up a whole range of race boats. Everyone’s idea of “creature comforts” or “absolutely awful” are different. Fastest is an objective measure but comfort is a subjective one. It’s perfectly ok to want to sail boats fast. It’s perfectly ok to prioritise speed over comfort. But, I don’t think you can ask other people to define the answer without defining the comforts.
 

westernman

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Having done both - it’s a very different experience from sailing. Even at 10 knots navigating becomes more intense than at 5. Actually just not bouncing/slamming around enough you can make a cup of tea might mean a boat that’s 20% slower is more “comfortable” than one that gets you there quicker.

I think your question is a bit odd!
The whole point of cruising is it’s about the journey and destination not the speed. Most cruising boats could probably improve their speed with fancier sails/rigging paying more attention to sail trim, emptying the lockers of 20 years of accumulated clutter, working the boat harder - but at the expense of comfort, wear and tear etc.

Reasonable comfort is also subjective - a head? A shower? A fridge? A freezer? Standing headroom in the saloon/galley? In the forepeak? A diesel heater? Hot water? Shore power? A sprayhood? Single line reefing? Hull design for interior comfort? Or for cutting through waves? A TV to watch something and can stay put when the weather is foul? A forward facing chart table? A hanging locker for wet kit so the whole boat doesn’t get soaked?

I want it all!!!
 

flaming

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The question even as rephrased in your final paragraph really doesn’t make sense. I’ve cruised a wayfarer - as have many people, in that sense they are not absolutely awful to cruise but if those level of creature comforts are on the table then it opens up a whole range of race boats. Everyone’s idea of “creature comforts” or “absolutely awful” are different. Fastest is an objective measure but comfort is a subjective one. It’s perfectly ok to want to sail boats fast. It’s perfectly ok to prioritise speed over comfort. But, I don’t think you can ask other people to define the answer without defining the comforts.
That's how you'd work if you were commissioning a new build maybe.

But not when perusing yachtworld etc. If "fast" is your key criteria then relatively few will meet it. So you're better off looking for fast boats then judging by interior.

Only the OP will know what sort of interior they need. But then nitpicking over the definition of "not awful" wasn't really my objection to your post.
 

Chiara’s slave

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I want it all!!!
If you have a million to spend on it, there is a 40 foot Dragonfly with all the performance and everything you’d expect of a cruiser. For that of course there are a few 55 odd foot monos that are going to give it a damn good try as well. But, realistically, if you want to go fast short handed, ie no more than 4, and most of those the age of our esteemed members, then a multi is the way. You need a really big mono to get the numbers. And with all big boats, it’s very much not just the initial outlay. Cheap big boats especially. They’re cheap cos there’s a few big bills waiting, like the sword of Damocles. True enough of my boat too. I didn’t pay too much for her, but have spent 20k bringing her up to scratch. Worth it because DFs hold their value so well, but that’s not the case for every boat. Second hand racers particularly. They’re in fact little use once past their winning days, as, like as not they need a big crew and are unmanageable without. And IMOCAs may sail solo, but are you that guy? They are super fit, usually young, and brave beyond all reason. But still, in spite of Doug’s pessimism, I believe you can have it all, just not quite for 50k.
 

westernman

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If you have a million to spend on it, there is a 40 foot Dragonfly with all the performance and everything you’d expect of a cruiser. For that of course there are a few 55 odd foot monos that are going to give it a damn good try as well. But, realistically, if you want to go fast short handed, ie no more than 4, and most of those the age of our esteemed members, then a multi is the way. You need a really big mono to get the numbers. And with all big boats, it’s very much not just the initial outlay. Cheap big boats especially. They’re cheap cos there’s a few big bills waiting, like the sword of Damocles. True enough of my boat too. I didn’t pay too much for her, but have spent 20k bringing her up to scratch. Worth it because DFs hold their value so well, but that’s not the case for every boat. Second hand racers particularly. They’re in fact little use once past their winning days, as, like as not they need a big crew and are unmanageable without. And IMOCAs may sail solo, but are you that guy? They are super fit, usually young, and brave beyond all reason. But still, in spite of Doug’s pessimism, I believe you can have it all, just not quite for 50k.
Can I tow it behind a Ford Mondeo?
 
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