45 IS THE NEW 40
I first worked for Baltic Yachts in the marine industry in 1979. The sweet spot for Baltic was the 39. The 39 was the perfect size for a family to cruise and do some racing. The 39 had a single enclosed aft cabin, which we called the owners stateroom, even though the owner almost always slept in the bow. It had hot & cold pressure water and a shower in the head. Gas stove and oven and built in ice box. It also had a full navigation station with a VHF, Loran C, and radio direction finder. By 1985 in the nav station had a Radar screen.
Originally we dragged the headsail of choice up on deck and had to hoist it up the headstay. Often a 150% genoa which was a bear to trim in. We had big primary winches, secondary winches for the spinnaker, and a winch for every other function. Having over 10 winches was not uncommon. 2 jib halyards and 2 spinnaker halyards, pole topping lift and pole down haul. 2 spinnaker sheets and 2 after guys. A lot of spaghetti.
By the mid 1980's roller furling eliminated the job of dragging the headsail up from down below and hoisting it. The headsails and spinnakers also took up most of the interior of the boat. If the boat was bigger the sails were bigger so there was never any boat left.
40 feet also seemed a manageable size. Docking and picking up moorings etc were doable at 40 feet. Above 40 feet if you made a mistake it could cause disaster.
Now 45 feet has replaced 40 feet as the sweet spot. The 45 also is completely different. Not only is the hull longer but the maximum beam is carried aft so the interior is more than twice the size of the old 40.
The new 45 will have 2 heads, no waiting, one with a separate shower stall. Spacious forward cabin with queen size walk around bed. Full head room up to 6'5" everywhere.
Main cabin has windows in the hull for lots of interior lighting. U shaped dinette that converts to double, Wine rack, Flat screen TV, Deluxe stereo, Internet, and all the features of home.
Still a sit down nav station but only has a VHF which you will not use since the wireless remote handset can be used anywhere. It has a DC and AC panel with lots of switches. There is a lighting panel for lights where you want them and as bright as you want them.
In the galley you have 2 big S/s sinks with fancy faucet, electric refrigeration and a second fridge for my beer, but you might use it differently. Lots of cabinets and built in trash can. Micro wave oven and gas stove and oven.
There are 2 aft cabins, each is twice the size of the aft cabin Baltic 39. Built in air conditioning with controls for each cabin. A generator runs the A/C plus charges batteries so you have unlimited source of electricity. You can run hair dryers, coffee makers and all you other electrical appliances, and of course your computer.
The instruments are at the helm now. GPS and radar working on same screen. Multi function displays show all other boat information you need. The instruments will also talk to your I phone, I pad, or computer. So you can be anywhere and see what's going on.
An anchor for a forty footer was a back breaker to pull up, but now you just push a button and your modern big anchor comes up on her own.
The jib is self tacking and roller furling. No sails below decks so you actually get to use the room. Mainsail can be furled in mast or on boom. No sail cover to deal with and reefing means put out as much sail as you want. All control lines are led thru jammer banks to 2 electric winches. You have not even seen a winch handle??
Bowthruster makes docking a breeze. The large modern diesel also produces lots of power and good fuel economy. The days of excitement at the marina watching people try to dock their boats is gone. The 45 is much faster with a modern hull. Motors at 8 knots versus 6.7 for the old 40. Faster, bigger, easy to handle, and all the luxuries of home.
Please mail comments to me at Bump@newwaveyachts.com