Beneteau 311 for offshore

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by bretag, Apr 27, 2019.

  1. bretag
    Joined: Sep 2010
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    Location: Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada

    bretag Junior Member

    Looking at Beneteau 311's as a future great lakes sailboat, perhaps with some later blue water voyages.
    What are your thoughts on the suitability of these sailboats for offshore passages?
    Please consider both the fixed and drop keel versions.
    Thanks, Bretag
     
  2. Rumars
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    Location: Germany

    Rumars Senior Member

    It all depends what you mean by "suitability".
    The hull was designed for racing (Figaro 1). The rig was designed for simple handling. I suppose the interior is to your liking.
    Blue water voyages are a matter of mindset first and gear second. If you are only comfortable going offshore in a 50 feet + full keel steel ketch the Bene is unsuitable.
    The important things gearvise are autopilot/windvane, electrical generation capabilities, watermaker/water storage, anchor and rode.
    Asuming the keelbolts are ok, the rigging sound and a watertight boat you can go blue water cruising if you are ok with the boats technical solutions.
     
  3. JosephT
    Joined: Jun 2009
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    Location: Roaring Forties

    JosephT Senior Member

    Agree with Rumars on the essentials for offshore/bluewater cruising. The Beneteau 311 is a lighter displacement hull and from what I've read it can be knocked around quite a bit in heavy seas. In my opinion it comes up short as it is just not as tough of a boat. Here's a couple of references for 30ft boats you might review if you're serious about offshore sailing. You'll want to be as comfortable & self-reliant as possible to go the long haul. Don't sell yourself short.

    5 small sailboats for sailing around the world - WaterborneMag.com https://waterbornemag.com/5-small-sailboats-for-sailing-around-the-world/

    The Alberg 30 is another great hull. I would suggest closely comparing the capabilities of the Bene 311 for offshore use.

    The Alberg 30 Sailboat http://bluewaterboats.org/alberg-30/
     
  4. CT 249
    Joined: Dec 2004
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    Location: Sydney Australia

    CT 249 Senior Member

    I've sailed the sister hull, the 31.7, a couple of times but not in bad conditions. It's a nice boat, capable of surprising speed considering how roomy it is. The interior is vastly roomier than on the old-style narrow-beam short waterline 30 footers.

    First 31.7s have done the Fastnet and the Caribbean 600, so they must have the required stability. The 311 keel version, though, has much less draft so is probably significantly less stable. If you took one offshore, you may want to make sure that it's not overloaded with baggy old furling jibs or a "radar arch", bimini and other topweight.

    The keel/centreboard version could be problematic as far as stability; you'd want to make sure it had sufficient LPS.
     
  5. Rumars
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    Rumars Senior Member

    CT do you think the people at Beneteau stupid or what? The keel/centreboard version has more ballast to compensate for the reduced draft. Oceanis 311: fin keel 2425lb ballast, keel/centreboard 3086lb ballast. This hulls have a big form stability component anyhow, they do not rely on ballast alone to keep them up.
     
    Doug Lord likes this.

  6. CT 249
    Joined: Dec 2004
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    Location: Sydney Australia

    CT 249 Senior Member

    No, I don't think they are stupid and nothing in my post implied that. I think they are intelligent manufacturers, who could decide to trade off ultimate stability in exchange for lower weight in a boat in which shoal draft is a major selling point. All boats are compromises and there is nothing wrong merely with asking someone to make sure which compromise Beneteau had chosen to make.Yes, of course the hull has a large form stability component, but my comment specifically referred to LPS, where form stability can be an issue.'

    The fact is that Beneteau DO change the effective ballast ratio for the Figaro/31.7/311 hull. Available data says that the 2400kg displacement Figaro had 900kg of keel ballast at 1.8m, the 3,750kg 31.7 has 1025kg of ballast at 1.9m draft, the 3,500kg 311 just 1100kg of ballast at 1.4m. Beneteau therefore do NOT always give the different versions of this hull more ballast to compensate for the reduced draft. Since Beneteau DON'T ensure that all versions have similar ballast/draft or RM ratios, there is no reason for me to assume they do!

    The other issue is that I can't find information on the LPS of either form of the Oceanis, therefore checking the LPS is a reasonable thing to advise.

    Re "the hull was designed for racing". My information, direct from the head of the Australian importer and intended to be relied upon, was that they intended to use the hull not just as a racer in the Figaro 1 form, but also as a cruiser/racer and cruiser in other forms (ie 31.7, 311, etc). That is why they chose Finot for their smaller boats and Farr for the bigger ones - the VPPs indicate that while Farr designs were a better speed/space mix in the bigger boats (34 feet and up) the Finots were better speed/space mixes in the smaller ones. The 31.7 hull is noticeably fuller in the bow than most Farrs. Farr could well have designed a faster racing hull, but that was not the aim.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2019
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