The Complete Guide to Choosing a Cruising Sailboat

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May 21, 1999


Mixed media product, 214 pages


0070419981 / 9780070419988


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Main description

Do you hear the siren song of the sea? Prepare for your dream voyage--by finding your perfect sailboat. It's not as hard as you think . . . when you have a master naval architect at your side.

In this one-of-a-kind book, leading boat designer Roger Marshall walks you through the process of choosing the perfect boat for your sailing lifestyle. Along the way, you will acquire a deep understanding of the many factors that go into a boat's performance, comfort, and seaworthiness, and learn how to choose among them to meet your requirements and preferences.

Marshall takes you step-by-step as he conceives and develops five prototype sailboats with widely varying design objectives: a Weekender, a Cruiser, a Voyager, a Single-Hander, and a Cruiser/Racer. The 200 illustrations "take you aboard," showing you clearly how the choices and compromises of boat design are made and what they mean to performance.

You'll learn about the features that make for a good cruising sailboat, from the basic choices (inshore or offshore), weekend or long-term cruising, occasional racing or nonracing) all the way to the finer points of hull shape and sail plan. And you'll gain a solid understanding of your sailboat-to-be: what it will do . . . what it won't do . . . and why. Seakindliness, performance, handling characteristics of different rigs, comfort on passages or weekends--it's all here, in clear language.

Beyond the basics, you will learn how to judge any sailboat, new or used, including

  • How to pick the best keel shape for your sailing area
  • What the subtle and not-so-subtle signs of comfort are
  • What makes a cockpit pleasant and functional
  • When a pilothouse makes sense, and when it doesn't
  • How to estimate the total cost of buying a boat (not the cost the salesperson gives you)
  • Why some boats sail better under almost all conditions than other boats, and why that may not be important

Plus, you'll learn how to determine in advance how much blood, toil, tears, and sweat your dream boat will cost you in maintenance (so small thing).

Best of all, you'll find Marshall's 12-page comparison table of production sailboats from all over the world, packed with information about 130 boats--length, beam, draft, displacement, ballast, sail area, fuel and water capacities, performance ratios, capsize and comfort ratios, and more, all tabulated for convenient and revealing comparisons.

With this book's help, you will board your own "ideal" vessel, satisfied that you're familiar with your boat from the masthead down and certain that it will bring you years of sailing pleasure.

Table of contents

List of Drawings Acknowledgments Introduction Chapter 1: What Do You Want in a Cruising Boat? Chapter 2: Hull Shapes Chapter 3: Seaworthiness Chapter 4: Comfort and Ease of Handling Chapter 5: Performance and Efficiency Chapter 6: Sails and Deck Chapter 7: How Much Does It Really Cost? Chapter 8: Ease of Maintenance Chapter 9: Getting It Together Index

Author comments

Roger Marshall is the technical editor for Soundings. After designing for the renowned firm of Sparkman & Stephens, he established his own design company, where he has designed sailboats and powerboats from 15 to 65 feet. He has cruised the oceans of the world and sailed at all competitive levels: Admiral's Cup, Bermuda and Fastnet races, and various world and national championships. He has written extensively for Motor Boating & Sailing, Yachting, SAIL, the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph (UK), Australian Sailing, and Kazi (Japan) and has written nine yachting book. He recently won first-place awards at the annual Boating Writers International marine-journalism contest.

Back cover copy

Are you searching for a sailboat? Follow master yacht designer Roger Marshall's advice and find the one that's right for you!

The right sailboat is a job, but the wrong sailboat can be a source of unmitigated grief. The acid test of any boat is how it behaves underway--and whether it's the right boat for how you sail and how you live on board.

In this illustrated guide to cruising sailboat design, Roger Marshall shares the benefit of his designing and seagoing expertise to help you understand your options and make the right selection. Find out how to judge . . .

  • The effect of hull shape on performance
  • Seaworthiness, comfort, and ease of handling
  • Deck design and interior layout
  • Ease of handling the rig and sail plan
  • Ease of maintenance

Marshall even includes a 12-page table rating 130 popular production sailboats for speed, seaworthiness, comfort, and other attributes.

The Complete Guide to Choosing a Cruising Sailboat will provide you with a thorough understanding of how cruising sailboats are shaped by their intended uses. Its clear, expert guidance will help you choose a boat that fulfills your sailor's dreams.

Copyright 2014 McGraw-Hill Global Education Holdings, LLC


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