MacGregor 26 not good? Water-ballast in general??

Discussion in 'Motorsailers' started by Tres Cool, Jul 1, 2007.

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  1. Willallison
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    Willallison Senior Member

    This is certainly a valid point, but I come back to those yachties who use their boats almost entirely for weekend &/or coastal cruising. They spend a significant proportion of their time under power. Surely the prospect of being able to travel twice as fast would be an enticing one...?

    For those who race their boats, or who are less inclined to motor, I agree, this would never be a boat for them.
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2007
  2. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    47 seven thoughts, actually. Amazing what happens when you drink too much coffee! I wonder if I'm full of it?
  3. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    Yes --if you drink a lot of coffee you will be full of it.
  4. Willallison
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    Willallison Senior Member

    What happens if you drink a lot of crappy coffee...?
  5. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    You will be sick!!
  6. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    I'm exactly the person who has no desire to go twice as fast as hull speed. I like rowing, but then my boat is about the equivilant of a Herreshoff 12 1/2. I might desire a small diesel in an equal scantling 20 footer.
    You're right though--- and most of those weekend warriors are motoring for lack of energy to put up the sails---- aren't Mac owners just less wealthy versions of those people? And aren't they a majority?
    And aren't yachts OUTRAGIOUSLY expensive? Oh yes they are! Ridiculously so, which is hardly the way it used to be when fishing was done from sailboats. Then, the poor man's yacht was a reality. Now when I look out across the bay (here in Maine) I can spot ten or fifteen millionaires in my view, and maybe one or two non-millionaires.
    So we are the lucky ones who beat the system by working on boats. To the rich, buying a used boat is more scary than if we bought one because they
    do very little themselves except maybe wax the hull, if that. They have to pay huge sums of money for work to be done, more in one year, in some cases, than I've ever paid for a whole boat. So they dream of buying a big new boat, and its funny, but they have to spend almost 200k for what I consider to be a cheap boat, such as a thirty foot Hunter (they comprimise--- they wanted a Crealock).
    My last cruiser was a Carter 33. bought from Steve Callahan, who wrote "Adrift". The boat could not be replicated for under 225k today, I think. I paid 8.5k for it, and it was in very good shape.
    Now picture the neophyte wannabe sailer. He isn't rich, and he knows less than a fraction of what the discriminating rich guy knows about boats and sailing in general. The idea of paying 100k for a well found yacht of 26 ft or so scares the bejeesus out of him. It is no wonder the brand new Mac appeals to him. He won't be working on it himself, like the rich guy, because he doesn't know how. He wants new for that reason.
    And there you have it.
  7. Raggi_Thor
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    Raggi_Thor Nav.arch/Designer/Builder

    What do you think about using an outboard inside a modern light sailboat?
    You can probably cruise at 12 knots and lift the outboard, seal the well and move the engine and fuel from side to side.
    Is this too complicated?
    This weight moving arrangement will of course occupy a lot of space.

    I've had one large mug of coffe today :)
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2007
  8. luvnwater
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    luvnwater Junior Member

    the "m" word

    Back ten years agor M made sailboats with dagger boards and a place to mount a small O/B on the back. I think its a 26d
  9. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    I like your reason for editing. Hahahah!
  10. Pericles
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    Pericles Senior Member

    Courtesy of The Cheap Pages I have spent an enjoyable number of hours reading a book published in 1906 detailing sailing boats from around the world.

    Using BS 1088 okume ply and epoxy it seems a reasonable task to reproduce some of these vessels, by a combination of S & G methods using moulds mounted on a strongback and then couldmoulding with strips and panels to achieve the desired scantlings. This presupposes a carvel style rather than clinker/lapstrake, but that's not impossible either.

    A double ended 70 footer Scottish Zulu with deep forefoot and sharply raked stern with bowsprit mounted jib and lugsails on foremast and mizzen, would make a fabulous world cruiser.

    The fishing boats of the past were well thought out seaworthy vessels, without the need for heavily ballasted keels. The hull shapes went well on all points of sailing, in weather that would appall today's sailors.

    "Shetland Line Boats

    Among the Shetland Islands small boats of the Norwegian model are everywhere used, both for inshore fishing and for ferrying across sounds and firths ; and, until the last quarter of the century, larger boats of the same build were alone used in the long line and the herring fisheries.

    The small line boats run from 10 feet of keel upwards, some of the larger haddock boats measuring about 12 feet keel. Sexerns (or six-oared boats) run from 20 to 23 feet. All these boats, however, are much larger than appears from these figures, as both stems are greatly raked.

    They are also high at the bows and quarters which helps to keep them dry in a seaway. They are built of light materials, and have very few timbers. Being so light in the frame, they are buoyant and lively, and under skilful handling will come through a good deal of rough weather. They must, however, be kept end on to a heavy sea ; their low waist makes them dangerous in a broadside sea. Where a large herring-boat or a cod smack would be 'laid to' under low sail, Shetland fishermen would consider it safer to keep a sexern under oars, heading straight through the sea.


    At least one case is on record of a Shetland crew being thus driven to Norway in a six-oared boat, and after they had been given up for lost, they returned home in safety. More remarkable still was the case of two girls from Unst who were blown out to sea when trying to cross a sound with a small boat loaded with peats. They, too, managed to keep their frail craft afloat till they reached Norway. One was eventually sent home ; the other accepted an offer of marriage from a young Norwegian, and remained.

    The Shetland sexern is not unlike an ordinary lifeboat in appearance, or the Dundee whaler, and is a survival of the model of the old Norse Viking longship. A good many of these boats are still used in the long line fishing at what are locally known as 'haaf' stations, but they are being fast supplanted by large herring-boats from Aberdeenshire. These haaf stations are harbours within easy reach of the deep-sea fishing banks, and generally situated near some outlying point."

    Therefore, why spend thousands and thousands of dollars on a boats with a hull that a thumb can distort, when the methods and materials exist to build a proven design that will be stronger than even the originals were.

    Whilst long overhangs are very pretty, it's waterline length that governs displacement speeds and 19th century fishermen need to get their catches ashore with minimum delay. Finally and if only----

    The cost of one of these boats, including steam hauling gear, sails and other outfit, used to be from £500 to £600, but cannot now be quoted at less than £700, owing to increased cost of material and other causes.

    One recently built at Fraserburgh was 66 ft. keel and 70 ft. over stems ; 21 ft. beam outside gunwale, and 20 ft. inside plank ; 7 ft. deep inside, and 40 tons register. The carpenter's account was £430 ; iron work, £52 ; sails and outfit, £150, and steam hauling gear, £105 ;-total, £737 ; and the following outfit of sails, etc., was provided:

    Get building,

  11. mighetto
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    mighetto New Member

    I encourage those interested in these MacGregors to check out my web site and comment. Almost every tab involves stability. These are not motorsailers because they do not carry the fuel needed for passages of more than about 100 miles. (of course if there is wind the range is infinate).

    The questions regarding the vessel stem from a July 4th 2002 event where several children died owing to a drunken operator now serving out 7 years for his deed. The episode involved firing rockets from the bow hatch. The boat never was on trial but a TP52 promoter used the episode to try and halt a move away from fixed keel sail boat design. Owing to that, the Mac26x is the most significant sailboat design in all of history because clearly the concepts advanced are becoming main stream today.

    The TP52 thread will be active the next few months owing to the transpac. It is interesting to note that a Stanford student is crewing on Morning. I have been expecting him to discover Roger MacGregor - who is honored in the sailboat hall of fame and introduced the movable water ballast X vessel shortly after being so honored. His Mc65 is racing in the transpac and is crewed by real sailors from Australia. (I am so dissapointed in the quality of US race boat sailors.) Things have to change and yet I thought the low point had already been met. Even though Macgregors are not sold as race boats there is race heritage and I suspect the Mac26x is an outstanding race trainer for future race boats. Looking forward to discussion.

    Oh - you need to be an adult to view my web page. Also one of the great disappointments last week was Apple's Iphone. Java applets are not supported. You need those for sailing calculators. Sigh, I thought Jobs got it. I suppose on some level every person is clueless. That includes me. So please comment - even rudely. We are here to learn from each other.

    Frank L. Mighetto
    1999 Mac26x out of Friday Harbor
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  12. Raggi_Thor
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    Raggi_Thor Nav.arch/Designer/Builder

    I wondered where you were :)
  13. marshmat
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    marshmat Senior Member

    So did I ;) Good to see you chip in on your favourite race trainer, Frank.
    (For the newbies- Frank is probably the most vehemently fanatical proponent of the McGregor hull, surpassing even its designer's enthusiasm for it. Search the forum for a thread called " TP52s " if you want to see why ;) )

    Now for a question that we still can't seem to agree on:
    What's wrong with an inexpensive boat designed to get newbies hooked on boating? Absolutely nothing. For people new to boating, not sure whether they want to sail or motor, not sure what they need and not willing to spend a fortune to find out, the Mac26 is pretty much ideal. The problems come when people try to get serious use out of one and find that it's really not meant for much more than a Force 3 on a weekend trip to the next island over. It's got some clever but somewhat misguided marketing behind it, so it's often seen as something it's not.
    Water ballast is more or less essential for a trailer sailer, as solid ballast would be too heavy for most tow vehicles. In most trailer sailers, the tanks are fore and aft; in the Mac they're port and starboard on either side of the centreboard- but are not intended to run one-full one-empty as raceboats (whose water ballast tanks are often high on the sides,almost wing-like) do, it's either all full or all empty. As mentioned before, it is very dangerous to run with half-ballast as this introduces free surface effects that can greatly increase the risk of capsize.
    In short, my opinion on the M26: A good choice for someone new to boating who's not yet sure what he wants or needs. A poor choice for someone who already knows where and how he wants to cruise, and wants something well built and seaworthy that he can trust when beyond the range of easy help.
  14. longliner45
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    longliner45 Senior Member

    how many of these boats have capsized? longliner

  15. mydauphin
    Joined: Apr 2007
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    mydauphin Senior Member

    MacGregor 26, Solution for Problem that doesnt exist.. But water ballast not bad!!!

    First Water Ballast... 95% of the worlds ships used water ballast
    100% of the megayatchs used it for ballast and trim

    But if you dont know what your doing with it, I guess you could really screw it up.

    Now the MacGregor 26
    It is kind of a big boat to trailer but you can. Dont think I can park it in my house. Kind of silly driving or powering it around on with mast up, lots of wind resistance. Bringing mast up and down must be a real pain.
    I dont think I would want to be on it in any kind strong winds or seas like 20kt, 4foot seas.

    So it is good for inland sailing on a lake. But you know - you can buy a fairly decent sailboat used rather cheap.

    But honestly I like sailboats, been on one once or twice...
    But I think powerboats specially slow ones are easier to work with.
    I think the MacGregor 26 is the worst of both worlds.

    However I complement the people who invented it. May be one day I will have time to use it.
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