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272 owners-let's talk

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Tom Ehmke

This is the opening volley to what I hope is an ongoing discussion about the O'day 272 or O'day 272LE. I have owned our 1986 model for five years having bought it from a fellow sailor who moved up to a 32' Hunter. He had owned the larger boat for a couple of years and the 272 had existed quite happily on the hard during that time just waiting for me, I guess... At any rate, because she had not been in the water for three or four seasons total since she was new, she was (is) in bristol condition. I have made several upgrades on the boat, mostly in the line of comfort and utility below. The only major change I have made on the outside is the purchase of a new suit of sails for the 1998 season. She now sports a 155% Genoa made from rather heavy-weight dacron. The heavier weight material was chosen because I cruise and want to use the sail under a variety of conditions, including heavy weather. The CDI furling system was on the boat and I upgraded the drum two years ago. The main is now full-battened with a mild roach. These sails have made a world of difference in both speed and handling. There are other points to discuss later, but the most pressing question I have for anyone listening has to do with balance and trim. Our boat has always been heavy in the bow. There is an anchor locker on the bow and before last year I stored a Fortress FX-13, 25 ft. of chain and 300 ft. of 1/2" nylon rode in that locker. Someone said that that was obviously the reason for the heaviness on the bow, so last year I moved the entire ground tackle system to the stern, stowing it in the quarter berth, sans cushion. Result...she is still heavy in the bow even though I moved the weight to the other end of the boat!!! Any ideas? My trim question has to do with a definite starboard list. I attribute it to the fact that the head, galley, batteries and lazerette are all on the starboard side with only the water tank on the port side to counterbalance the weight. The funny part of all this is that there is an obvious speed increase when I sail on starboard tack because (I assume) the extra weight on that side keeps the boat more upright in almost all winds. Port tack lags because (I assume) the boat heels more and the sails are not as efficient at that degree of heel. If there is anyone out there who has or has had these problems with a 272 or any other boat, I would appreciate your suggestions... or even telling me to "get over it"
 
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Justin - O'day Owner's Web

Balance and Trim

Tom, I do not have a 272 of my own, but I have two thoughts for you regarding you balance and trim issues. First off, how down at the bow does your boat sit? Have you put it next to another 272 to see how they compare? A lot of the boats in this category (O'day, Catalina etc) were built so that they lie on their lies with several people in the cockpit, but sit bow down when lightly loaded. On a 272, four 175 pound guys would equal almost 15 percent of the boat's displacement. This would tend to cause to boat to settle at the rear. Also, many people tend to overload the lazerrette which would again tend to mess up balance. To compensate, O'day may have built in the balance 'problem' you experience. I have seen this for sure on Tanzers and Catalinas. Also, is your boat a 272 or 272LE? If its a 272, does it have inboard or outboard power? If its outboard, you may be experiencing an attitude that was designed to be able to accomodate the wieght of an inboard. Most but not all 272's were delivered in this trim. All 272LE's were. Secondly, you are are probably correct about the trim being off because the load on the boat is concentrated on the stb side. This is a feature! You have extra reason to stay on the privileged tack when racing in close quarters! Fair winds, Justin - O'day Owner's Web
 
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Tom Ehmke

balance and trim

Justin, Thanks for the reply. First I'll answer your question about the boat. Ours is a 272. Currently the O'day web site offers no 272 selection, only the 272LE which, as I understand it, is wheel-steered.How would I go about setting up a category for 272's in your list of models? Our boat is tiller-steered and powered by a Westerbeke 10-2 which sets just below the cockpit bulkhead. This doesn't seem unusual as far as I can see. I've wondered how much difference the balance would change if it were powered by an outboard mounted on the transom. Would O'day have set the balance so as to allow the owner a choice or is it one size fits all? What I do notice is that the boot stripe at the bow is usually submerged when the boat is motionless in the water. The holding tank for the head is located forward beneath the v-berth and I only empty it when it is close to full. This may contribute to the heaviness in the bow, but wouldn't O'day have thought of that? I usually don't carry four 175 lb. guys in the cockpit and the boat is primarily designed as a pocket cruiser. My wife is usually my crew and I could get into a lot of trouble if I told her she needed to "bulk up" to provide proper balance in the cockpit. As a matter of fact I could become a large chunk of movable ballast chucked overboard if I even whispered such a thing!! (I hope a little humor is permitted here)As far as trim goes, I can live with it. There just isn't much storage space on the port side of the boat. Sounds pretty much like you're telling me what I suspected to be true. There's not much to be done so "get over it" Another question before I close. Is there a source which could provide information such as expected top speed or how close I can expect to sail to the wind? I've done my own polars, but am curious as to how what I know about my boat compares with some other average data.Thanks much for your time. Tom
 
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Justin - O'day Owner's Web

The obvious question

Tom, I looked at a couple of pictures of 272's and they seem to sit on their lines. The obvious question for you is: Does the boat sit on its lines with the holding tank empty? How big is the tank? Figure 8 and a half pounds per full gallon, more or less. That's a significant weight forward. You say that its usually bow down. What is the difference between bow down and bow up? If its a couple of inches, the weight in the tank could easily account for it. I'm sure O'day recognized that the balance would change with the level in the tank, but they had to put the line somewhere. If it were trimmed for full tank, you would see lots of bottom paint when the tank was empty. As far as the engine affecting balance - There were at least some 272's with outboard power. I saw one in Mass. recently. The inboard with tankage and aux. equipment undoubtedly weighs more than the outboard, but the leverage of having the outboard further aft might make the difference negligable. It would depend on the equipment and how it was installed. You think trying to tell you crew to bulk up is hard? Try telling crew to slim down!! Justin - O'day Owner's Web
 
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