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Most are single-masted "Bermuda sloops," with a single foresail of the jib or genoa type and a single mainsail. Some are gaff rigged. The smallest of this type, generally called pocket yachts or pocket cruisers , and trailer sailers can be transported on special trailers. These vessels can be quite complex in design, as they need a balance between docile handling qualities, interior space, good light-wind performance and on-board comfort.
The huge range of such craft, from dozens of builders worldwide, makes it hard to give a single illustrative description. However, most favor a teardrop-planform hull, with a fine bow, a wide, flat bottom and deep single-fin keel with ample beam to give good stability.
Most are single-masted Bermuda rigged sloops, with a single fore-sail of the jib or Genoa type and a single mainsail. Spinnaker sails are also common for down-wind use.
Such a vessel will usually have several cabins below deck. Typically there will be three double-berth cabins; a single large saloon with galley, seating and navigation equipment; and a " head " consisting of a toilet and shower-room. The interior is often finished in wood paneling, with plenty of storage space. Cruisers are quite capable of taking on long-range passages of many thousands of miles. This basic design is typical of the standard types produced by the major yacht-builders.
Aside from this fairly standard design, built in numbers and using methods approaching mass production by the large yacht-building firms of Europe and North America , there are some common variations to suit a yacht for a more particular role or to emphasize one aspect of performance rather than the wide range of abilities needed in a standard design. The classic "long keel" yacht, where the keel is integrated into the lower portion of the hull and extends for all or most of the hull's length, rather than being a single fin attached to the hull at the center, is still being built in small numbers.
The long keel generally provides better directional stability, especially in rough weather, at the cost of greater weight, a narrower hull which decreases interior space, and poorer handling when under engine power or in tight conditions such as a marina.
The Twister is an example of a long-keeled yacht designed in the s. Other rig variations are found on many different sizes of yacht such as the yawl , ketch , schooner and even unusual sail plans such as the junk rig. A yacht may also be a "cruiser-racer", which as the name implies is a blend between the cruiser and racing variants. This is often a builder's existing design with changes to the rigging, sails, keel and controls to provide better performance.
Some of the interior appointments may be reduced or removed to save weight. The fixed fin keel is most commonly found on modern cruising yachts worldwide but some are still built with twin 'bilge' keels or with lifting fin keels which retract into the yacht's hull.
In both cases these allow the yacht to sit upright on the seabed in shallow water or on areas that dry at low tide. There are about a thousand sailing yachts in the world.
This is largely due to reduced hull-building costs brought about by the introduction of fibreglass hulls, and increased automation and "production line" techniques for yacht building, especially in Europe. The majority of our clients are aged , but anyone who is fit and active is welcome to join. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate disabled guests or young children under We own our own boat. She is a seven year old Jeanneau 39i, both well equipped, modern, comfortable and a joy to sail both in light winds and heavier seas.
We have three double berths and two heads and can also use the main saloon if necessary, but our aim is for only people on board so everyone has their own cabin unless they come with a partner. We sail from the beginning of May till the end of June and then again through September and October.
Due to the heat and busyness of airports and ports we avoid July and August. Dalaman is our local airport for most trips. Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour.