Cover image for The complete guide to choosing a cruising sailboat
The complete guide to choosing a cruising sailboat
Marshall, Roger.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Camden, Me. : International Marine, 1999.
Physical Description:
x, 214 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Hamburg Library VM331 .M368 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



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.

Author Notes

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.

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