About a year away and need advice

Ed Orlando

Member I
I am going to get back to sailing and sailboat ownership in about a year. I have been poking around the Ericson website for a few months and really appreciate how much folks who contribute to this site care and know about their Ericsons and sailing. I am writing for advice from any and all. I envision sailing mostly in the Chesapeake for a couple of years and eventually coastal cruising in New England, and potentially the Caribbean when retired. Mostly I will sail with my wife, but also foresee single handing, and the occasional party of 4-6 people including me for short stints. I have owned several s-boats in the long ago past and have bareboat chartered in Florida and the Caribbean mostly 10 or so years ago, so I consider myself to be of seasoned beginner to intermediate ability/knowledge.

Currently, I am thinking about an E-38 (possibly E-35, but I may not fit) or similar length Island Packet.

Some important considerations for us:

I am 6’4” tall and think I may fit in an E-38 and would fit in either IPY. My wife enjoys sailing, but neither of us are racers, we are more the cruising type. That said, I appreciate a boat that gets me there faster. She prefers a less lively, more stable sailboat.

I understand the keel and rudder, hull shape/freeboard differences in the boats and their affects on sailing upwind/downwind and moving around a marina, anchor, or in relatively shallow water.


Knowing that all yachts are a compromise among speed, comfort, and price, I am hoping some of you will weigh in on my understanding gathered so far:

E-38 can be tender at first and then becomes stable after heeling and the IPY is quite stiff or resistant to healing. This is assuming same wind/wave conditions and seamanship of the captain.

E-38 would be better at sailing to windward and in light winds, but it may be a little challenging in following seas. IPY would not sail as close to the wind, may not sail (very well) in light winds, and would track better overall but especially in following seas.

Most E-38s for sale seem to be the longer, approximately 6’ fin keel, and the IPYs all are approxmately 4.5’ modified full keel. I understand that the keel shape and depth are some of the most important drivers of sailing characteristics. How important is this difference and should I limit us to looking at modified keels in the E-38 (wing and bulb)?

How about the gear drive steering of the IPY vs. cable drive of the E-38 and most wheeled steering systems?

The staysail/jib combo of the IPY vs. the more standard sloop rig of the E-38?

It seems IPYs are a little more expensive, but as company is still building boats, a younger boat could be bought which would save time, money, and effort restoring an older boat. To me, it is first things first. Assuming you can buy one or the other, the most important questions are about the sailing characteristics of these two very different designs. My feeling is that E-38 is a faster, more attractive yacht and would be great under most conditions I would sail under (hopefully). My feeling is my wife would prefer the sailing characteristics of an IPY. Does anyone have experience on both boats (I don't and hope to correct that)?

Thank you in advance for your advice!

Ed
 

Ed Orlando

Member I
Hi Loren,
Draft is probably relevant in the Chespeake, which is where we will sail mostly for the first years until retirement. I don't know if 4 1/2' in an IPY vs. the deeper fin keel on the E-38 (or 35) makes that much difference. Let's say we could live with the deeper keel or target only Ericson boats with bulb or winged keel in the later models by PS, does my understanding of how the boats would sail accurate?
Thanks, Ed
 

Teranodon

Member III
I've seen some IP boats at the marina, and I sailed on one. They are very different from Ericsons. Heavier, slower, more luxurious, more complex and more expensive. Seems to me that if you would enjoy saling one of them, you probably wouldn't enjoy the other. I'm not knocking IP, mind you. I just don't think that they are comparable.
 

goldenstate

Sustaining Member
Blogs Author
In my experience, almost all of the used Ericsons for sale in the Chesapeake area have the shoal draft keels (As do most of the ones in the Long Island Sound). Nearly all of the California and Maine boats have the deep fin keels. If you can't find a shoal draft, wait a month or two and one will turn up.

As for height, I suspect you would be fine in a 38. I too am 6'4". The only place I can stand truly straight up in my 32-200 is directly in the main salon hatch space. The bunks/berths/beds however are all long enough to accommodate a person.

More on interior sizing:

Otherwise, I would say go start shopping boats now and see as many as you can, so that you will have a good sense in a year of what is a good deal and what is not. I know little of Island Packets.

Finally, the 38 comes in different interior configurations.

The newer 38-200 and E380 layout has a larger head located aft and a smaller nav station.
The older 381 and 38 have smaller heads located forward and larger nav stations.

You may also find the odd Pacific Seacraft Ericson boat (built post 1990) that would be a great choice.

Others can no doubt expand and expound on the model differences.
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
While headroom varies from one model to another, EY and most other builders tried to have a provable "six feet of headroom" for advertising purposes. You might notice how many boats from a host of builders simply say "standing headroom".... !
I have been aboard a lot of boats over the years, and "standing" is a rather flexible "standard".
:)

Our O-34 has 6'2", exactly. OTOH, the E-32-2 has close to 6'4". The E-38-200 I have sailed on is about 6'3" or a bit more.
 

LemmyK

Member II
Headliner. My 35-2 has 1/8" rigid panels held up with 1/2" X 1 1/2" teak battens. Battens I can hit my head on. If I'm dead centered on the midline I pass under them (barely).
The whole thing will be removed and replaced (it's po installed MDF!), with thinner, if any battens at all.
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
I had an Island Packet 36 neighbor in Hawaii. It was much more set up for long distance cruising than my E381--deep freeze, generator, autopilot and so on, and I am sure it was more stable in bouncy conditions given its weight and keel. There are boats in which the compromises are made in favor of liveaboard and comfortable cruising, whereas I'd say Bruce King started with classic forms and resisted compromise.

But you don't have to tell your wife I said that. And don't show her a Beneteau, which has discovered what everybody really wants nowadays.
 

David Grimm

E38-200
Yes, What Christian said. I have a 38-2 with the 6 foot draft that I purchased in the Chesapeake. The previous owner loved her and I love her too. However don't let your wife aboard one of thoes fancy open cockpit Jeanneau sun odyssey's. The open cockpit is nice for dock partys but I think I would be totally nervous off shore.
 

Ed Orlando

Member I
Thank you Everyone for your advice and taking the time to reply!

It is hard to compare two boats that are so different. That was not my intent. My first post was meant to say this is my armchair understanding of how these boats sail - am I on the right track?

I first came to appreciate Ericson from Christian's videos and books. I vaguely heard of Ericson but did not know much about them. I realize that much of what a boat can do is due to the knowledge of its captain. But to me, it gives credibility to the seaworthiness of the Ericson design that these older boats (that I might afford) are sailed in the Great Lakes and Atlantic and Pacific coastal waters and some take them to Hawaii. The other big impact came from this website! There is much knowledge here that someone like me can learn from. It is so accessible. I did not even know that such a thing existed.

I knew about IPYs a bit because most of my sailing was in Florida or the Caribbean and there are many IPYs there. They have a reputation for quality in a mass-produced boat. I had seen them at boat shows. There are Sabres and Tartans that I am admire but cannot afford. There are Catalinas, Hunters, and Benneteaus that all have their place, but are not of interest for a number of reasons. (That said, some of those twin binnacle/steering station cockpits do look sweet.)

I absolutely have to visit boats that are for sale and see what my/our impressions are aesthetically and get the answers directly to some really basic stuff that is important to me, such as, do I fit? Next getting out on an Ericson and Island Packet are critical after the research and dockside shopping. In the end, it is a personal choice I know. Only I/we can answer how tender an E-38 or how it feels in a following sea or how slow is that IP-35 in a Chesapeake summer? Boats are just so expensive both time and money-wise and I want to be as informed as possible.

I appreciate your time and knowledge, so thanks!

Ed
 

Ed Orlando

Member I
While headroom varies from one model to another, EY and most other builders tried to have a provable "six feet of headroom" for advertising purposes. You might notice how many boats from a host of builders simply say "standing headroom".... !
I have been aboard a lot of boats over the years, and "standing" is a rather flexible "standard".
:)

Our O-34 has 6'2", exactly. OTOH, the E-32-2 has close to 6'4". The E-38-200 I have sailed on is about 6'3" or a bit more.
Hi Loren,

E-32-2 has similar headroom as the E-38 - that is interesting. I saw lots of dimensions for berths, but is there somewhere on the Ericson site where I can find standing headroom dimensions?

Ed
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Hi Loren,

E-32-2 has similar headroom as the E-38 - that is interesting. I saw lots of dimensions for berths, but is there somewhere on the Ericson site where I can find standing headroom dimensions?

Ed
This would be nice to have, but as you notice we have asked for the berth length info for many years, and are still missing some.
You might start a separate thread for this data collection.
To be useable in the "real world" I could imagine that we would want center cabin, forward cabin (V berth area), aft cabin, and head compartment. And of course the best measurement for advertising purposes...... under the sliding hatch!
:)
 
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Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
I would think that for tall guys, headroom is a dockside issue only (of course we spend most of our time on the boat dockside). Any kind of shoes adds a lot, a factor not always considered.

When sailing, we move through the saloon like monkeys, handhold to handhold, knees bent. So not much of an issue when under way, or for passagemaking.

Frank Gehry's $7 million sailboat, conceived by him (with naval architects help), has very high ceilings. But the huge main saloon has no handholds, it looks like a living room in a house, and delivery crews hate it when the sea is up.

Issue of headroom comes up on any handsome boat under 40 feet. More important, maybe, is bunk length for people with heads in the clouds.

 

Ed Orlando

Member I
I would think that for tall guys, headroom is a dockside issue only (of course we spend most of our time on the boat dockside). Any kind of shoes adds a lot, a factor not always considered.

When sailing, we move through the saloon like monkeys, handhold to handhold, knees bent. So not much of an issue when under way, or for passagemaking.

Frank Gehry's $7 million sailboat, conceived by him (with naval architects help), has very high ceilings. But the huge main saloon has no handholds, it looks like a living room in a house, and delivery crews hate it when the sea is up.

Issue of headroom comes up on any handsome boat under 40 feet. More important, maybe, is bunk length for people with heads in the clouds.


Point taken about height underway vs. at dock, anchor, etc. And that bunk length is not something you can really compromise, whereas standing headroom is somewhat "negotiable." Thank you for the link to the tall person's Cruising and Sailing Forums forum.
 

Ed Orlando

Member I
Two quick questions: What is the best single volume sailing book to read? Or, for those who cannot give me just one, perhaps a collection must-read sailing/cruising/sailboat maintenance books.

What do folks think about the information in Practical Sailor?
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
What do folks think about the information in Practical Sailor?
I used to subscribe. It was OK compared to most magazines. Nowadays I really prefer Practical Boat Owner from the UK. Also, Good Old Boat is a great read.
 
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