The sailboat is smaller than the sailing ship and the contact of the wind to the sails is the potential power for the moving. (1) every sea and region need their own special boat type. Several boats may be appropriate for the eastern waters whereas they are the worst types for the western waters or some of them was made for the long journeys in the ocean while some of them weren’t made. Thus, the voyaging distances, water features such as depth, the temperature and composition; weather circumstances and finally the convenience in sailing led to make different types of sailboats in order to the best accommodation. Among these various kinds, there are some more suitable boats for the newcomers. (8) sailing boats size range, is from lightweight dinghies like the Optimist dinghy (7’9″) to the yacht with more than 200 feet long. LOA (length overall) indicates the length and it is different from LWL (length on the waterline). These two criteria can be entirely various in the older style boats. (9)
Mast arrangement and sails
What are the best sailboats for the beginners?
The perfect first sailboat is:
Sailboats are in the absolutely various kinds. But there are some main groups that most boats will belong to such as the dinghies (the best choice for the neophytes that can prepare adventure for them along with less expenses), keel boats or yachts (sailing boats that were made for long journeys in the ocean and even around the world) and catamarans. (8) The fundamental of the sail boats classification are the size, hull configuration, keel type, purpose, mast and sails configuration and rig. (1) In this review article, firstly, we are going to illustrate the sailboat types according to the three major classification: Hull type (mono hull or multi hull), Keel type (fin keel, wing keel, bilge keel, dagger board, or centerboard) and Mast arrangement and sails (sloop, fractional rig sloop, ketch, schooner, yawl, cutter and cat). (9) secondly, we suggest some tips for buying the best sailboat to the newcomers in sailing.
N.B: These Three major classification investigate the sailboats with their own criterium. So, since one sailboat can have the features of all three classification, some sailboat types can overlap in them.
The principal part of the sailboat is the hull. Fiberglass, metal and wood are the three common materials for manufacturing hull. In the classification by the hull type, Sailboats were differentiated by the number of the hulls: The mono-hull is the trait for the boats with just one hull while the multihulls are referred to the sailboats with more than on hull that divided to the Catamaran and the Trimaran. (9) Well-known mono-hull sailboats include:
A handcrafted sailboat that can have the motor or the lateen sails is called Dhoni. This kind is popular in Maldives and they use Dhoni for the transportation and voyaging as well as dwelling on the sea comfortably. The coconut palm wood was the first material for making this boat that Maldivian fisherman used in the past. Nowadays, fiberglass is the main material. Dhoni also are developed more todays by adding the steering wheel, satellite navigation systems, hydraulic line haulers, sonars, fish finders along with the room for accommodation as well. Masdhoni is the name for this equipped fishing Dhoni. (19)
These boats were made for the long journeys with mostly 16-50+ feet in LOA. Standing headroom down below are set up generally in boats larger than 26 feet. These large sailboats have big fleets and take part in racing or group cruising.
The purpose of voyaging for a day paved the way for creating a new type of sailboats that calls daysailer. These boats are generally small in 14-20 feet that can carry 4 passengers. The cuddy cabin also has been made on these boats for accumulating gear. These are the best suggestion for the newcomers in sailing. (11,20) The daysailers with two hulls are defined as the beach catamarans. (11)
The major feature of these sailboats is the inboard engine that propels the boat upwind or downwind and let the sailors to cruise long journeys. They are mostly well furnished in order to preparing the comfortable moments on the boats. LOA of these boats are 35 feet and over. The manufacturers chose small rig and added the weight for the engine along with a larger gas and water tanks. Thus, the speed has decreased.
These are the best sample of the hybrid boats equipped for the racing. These can also provide the best overnight cruising for the weekenders. 25 feet and over is the usual LOA for them.
These are lighter and have more equipment than the cruising boats but in other features, they are approximately the same. These are built for fast moving. That’s why their ride is not as comfortable as the cruising boast. Generally, 20-70+ feet in LOA. (11)
Dinghy is the small open boat with three or fewer sails: the mainsail, jib and spinnaker. The short LOA, simple operation and minimal maintenance of the dinghy are the attractive aspects for the youngsters and they usually use this kind in purpose of diversion as close as to the coast, sail training, tending a larger ship and even for racing. (1,8,18,19)
Childs with 7-12 years old can start their sailing training with the Optimist kind of dinghy. The popularity of this type is increasing and has over than 150000 adherents all over the world. Most of the champions of the racing started with this kind. Another type of the dinghy is the Laser which it is an international one-design single-handed dinghy. There are more than 250000 sailboats in this kind worldwide. Thus, we can say that it is going to be the most popular sailboats in the world. It’s fame is because of the three different size rigs (the full rig, the radial and the 4.7) that mount to the same hull. Laser is one of the Olympic class in both male and female. (3)
Dinghy can carry one or two passengers and guarantee a wet ride for them. As well as the Daysailer, Dinghy is the best choice for the beginners. If dinghy have more than one hull is taken account as multihulls. (11)
The purpose of designing these sailboats was racing. Thus, the manufacturers built larger areas for the sails because of the sails’ length and used light materials along with the modern equipment in order to increase the speed. The number of the crews were taken account as the counterbalance force. Hence, three to six crews have been determined as the certain number of the crews. (3,8) Another feature of this boat is the keel letting the sailors trail and self-righting. The size of the sport boats is between the 5.50m and 8.00m. (3) The keel in these sailboats can be fin keel in simpler sailboats and wing keel in more professional sailboat.
The most popular sailboats in Australia and New Zealand are the Skiffs. The development of the Skiff classes eventuated to the currently light and quick sailboats that have the high-powered rigs. These boats can carry two to four crew on average. Skiffs classes are 12, 16 and 18-footer. The necessity crew for 12-footer are two persons and for 16 and 18- footer are three persons. The other classes are the 29er, the 49er and FX (Olympic classes).
Indubitably, the best choice for the ocean cruising is the Super-Maxi. Recently, several super-maxi sailboats such as Wild Oats IX, Investec Loyal, Loki, Alfa Romeo II and ICAP Leopard III have caught the headlines in the hunt for line honors. These sailboats are the best in the sailing world, although their building, operating and maintaining take a lot of costs and also need dozens of crew and best sailors to propel. (3)
Pocket Cruisers or Pocket Yachts are the small sailboats with the onboard cabin which can be carried on a trailer. Usually, the LOA for these boats is from 10 to 26 feet. In addition, their weight is designed few enough to allow it to be towed on a trailer by regular cars. (8)
The sailboats with more than one hulls are determined as multihulls which encompass Proas, Catamarans and Trimarans. The multihull sailboats are quick and fun form of sailing. That’s why many clubs worldwide are attracted to this kind of sailboats. The well-known classes of the multihulls are the Hobbie 16, Formula 18 cats, A-cats and the ex-Olympic multihull class called Tornado. (3)
The popularity of the Catamarans has been increasing so far. They have two hulls that are parallel to each other as they are attached together by beam or some kind of bridge. These sailboats have pros and cons like all types of the sailboats: their speed and stability are more than the mono-hulls. Additionally, they have shallow draughts in compare with regular boats. On the other hand, the maneuverability of the Catamarans is less. (8) Beach catamaran and Cruising catamaran are two kinds of catamaran.
These are commonly 14-20 feet and primarily used for day sailing. These boats are quick. So, they need proficient skippers for sail as well. They have shallow drafts when the dagger boards are up for beaching.
In compare with the beach catamaran, these are more similar to mono-hull cruising sailboat with accommodation for the ocean cruising. They are 25-50+ feet in length and have stability as well as the shallow drafts. (11)
Similar to the Catamarans, these are also subsets of the multihulls. But Trimarans have three hulls instead of two. The big hull in the middle and the two hulls on the sides is giving the stability to the boat. People are using these sailboats for the diversion or the racing. (8)
All the hull type sailboats can be made or equipped with hydrofoils. (1)
keel is the backbone of the boats and running longitudinally all over the bottom of the sailboats. Keel was made to achieve two purposes: firstly, counter the sideways force of the wind and generate forward motion by creating lift. Secondly, provide ballast; the more ballast, the more stable (and heavy) the boat is. There are various types of the keel with different features. Thus, we can categorize the sailboats by the type of the keel.
This was being mostly used in the traditional sailboats. This type of keel provides enough ballast and lift for the sailboats by using length instead of the depth. In addition, rudder mounts to the aft end in the Full-length keel sailboats.
This type of the keel is generally used in Skiffs and some kinds of sport boat. This kind has deeper and shorter length in compare with the hull and it is entirely separated from the rudder.
Wing or bulb keel
Naval architects added two wings or a bulb to the lowest part of the keel in order to improve righting moment without adding too much weight as well as to set the ballast as low as possible and to help increase the amount of leverage without increasing keel depth too much. The wings reach out sideways from the tip of the keel. These kinds are set up on professional sailboats such as sport boats. Additionally, they can be added to the cruising sailboats in order to decrease the draft that improves approach to the shallow or shoal water.
Bilge keel leads the sailboats to stand on the sand or mud at the low stream of the water. The sailboats with Bilge keel are generally used in the regions with large tidal ranges. This kind in not as efficient as the fin or wing keel in decreasing the leeway.
Centerboard or Daggerboard
These types are set up on the sailing dinghies and professional Catamarans and Trimarans. The crew can raise and lower the Centerboard or Daggerboard. These are decreasing the draft and wetted surface as the crew raise them and preparing the common benefits of the keel in lowering condition. Centerboard is fastened to the sailboat by the pin. The pin is only used for providing fulcrum point for lifting. The daggerboard falls in to the opening through the sailboat. (9,14)
Mast arrangement and sails
Another criterium for classifying the sailboats are the Mast arrangement and sails. The below groups are only some of the most common kinds.
N.B: In this classification, the topic of all types refers to the mast and sails configuration. Additionally, the sailboats with the certain mast and sails configuration are defined as the type topic. E.g. the sloop is the name for the one mast and two sails, a mainsail and a headsail, configuration as well as the name of the sailboats with this mast and sail configuration. In this article whenever we talk about the kinds, the second meaning is in our view.
“Sloop” has different meanings based on the various time and place. British and US Navy used the word “sloop” in order to indicate a vast class of the auxiliary boats that they didn’t belong to any other class of warships between the 16th to the 19th century. The smallest warships with 10 to 20 guns onboard was the “sloop-of-war”. The sloop class was further divided into two categories: the three masts sailboat called a ship sloop and the two masts boat defined as a brig sloop. Each were vessels square rigged on both masts Sloop was defined as a single-masted vessel fore and aft rigged with both a mainsail and a headsail. (2,15)
Nowadays, sloop refers to the sailboats with one mast, a mainsail and a headsail and it is the most common kind of the sailboats. jib, genoa or spinnaker can be the names of the headsails according to the size and shape of the them. The upholding rope that extends from the mast to the bow of the yacht lifts the headsail to the top of the mast on the forestay. (9,13,19) fixed bow spirit, top mast and standing rigging are the features of the sloop. Centerboard keel is set up on the sloop and its stability on the width of the beam instead of the depth of keel is important. (2)
This kind of sailboats are made for sailing in to the wind. (1)
Fractional Rig Sloop
In these sailboats the forestay doesn’t have access to the highest point of the mast since it is attached to the lower fulcrum. Crew can crook the highest point of the mast in order to flatten the sails on a windy weather while the complete power is not essential. And this is defined as the advantage of these sailboats. (9,19) the short-handed crew can handle easier and simpler the smaller headsails. That’s why it is suggesting that in the designing time of the sailboat, the smaller headsails base on the crew abilities and features are manufactured. (1) in the 60s and 70s, the popularity of the fractional rig sloops increased. (9,19)
Similar to the sloop, the Cutter has a mast and mainsail. But the place of the mast is further aft in order to provide enough space for two headsails from forestays. The headstay carries the jib and the inner stay carries the staysail. This kind of sailboats allow the crew to handle sails configuration in various wind strengths and circumstances easily. The cutter is also told to the cruising sailboats. (9,13,19) Indubitably, the Cutters will be the most practical and maybe most effective sailboats for accommodating with different situations and conditions than the other sailboats, if they were manufactured with average aspects ratio, a self-tending boomed staysail and a jib. (2)
Ketch has two masts on the deck: the mainmast and the mizzenmast. The mizzenmast is shorter in behind of the mainmast and forward on the redder post. Thus, the mizzenmast is tread in front of the sternpost. It is approximately similar to the Cutter and sloop. (1,2,9,13,19) gaff-headed or jib-sail are set up in each mast. In this kind of sailboats, larger mast and sail stand foremost, while in the two masts schooner is exactly reverse. Almost in the 18th century, the ketch was put aside by the navies. (2)
We can see up to six masts in the Schooners but mostly they have two masts. In the two masts schooners, the forward mast is shorter than the rearward, differentiating this from a ketch or a yawl. (1,2,9,10,13,19,21) In the historic topsail schooner, the triangular sails were hoisted above the gaff sails just because of the topmasts, whereas in the more modern schooners the Bermuda rigs is common. (1) small schooner has some cons too. The most important disadvantage of the schooner is that bracing the mainmast is really hard even more than the cutter or ketch. In addition, the foremast generally is set up in the way of the bunk. schooners are divided in to different kinds:
This is the sailboat with fully rigged foremast and fore-and-aft rigged mainmast. The sails in this vessel aren’t completely square. “Hermaphrodite Brig” is the Scandinavian term which means square sail schooner. This kind can also be categorized as the brigantines. Since, in the brigantines the topsails on the mainmast should be entirely square and being more similarities between Hermaphrodite Brig and schooner, the Hermaphrodite Brig were determined as the subgroup of the schooner.
Three Mast Topsail Schooner
Another type of the schooner is the three mast topsail schooner. As the name also shows there are three masts on the deck in this kind which the arrangement of the sails can be gaff, square or both.in addition, foresails are set up on this kind of sailboats.
In compare with the three mast topsail schooner, this kind have two mast rather than three. Having gaff- and square-rigged and the foresails are almost the same as the three mast topsail schooner. There are gaff sails above the foremast in this type distinguishing from the brigantine and barquentine.
Three Mast Schooner
It has three masts as well as the foresails. The rigging of uniform dimensions and scantlings for all masts except the main heavier and longer boom of the stern mast are the necessities for the schooners with three masts and over.
In this sailboat we can see three masts as well as the staysail and the foresail.
Fore and Aft Schooner
This is the modern type of the sailboats that are popular for trading in the pacific where sailing ships are still employed in small numbers. The main benefit of this sailboats is that they have practical adaption with the human power. (2)
As same as the ketch, the mainmast is also longer than the mizzenmast in the yawl. The mizzenmast in this kind is set up behind the rudderpost further in compare with the ketch in order to stabilize the deck than the propulsion. (1,2) Thus, the mizzen sail is smaller than in ketch. (9,13,19)
Single mast fitted forward of the helm and lack of the jib are the two features of the Catboat. In the historic catboat, multiple sails from the gaff rig were noticeable, although in the more modern architecture just one sail as the mainsail is designed. (1) nowadays, the rig in these sailboats can be gaff, lug or Bermuda. (2,9,13,19)
Fully Rigged Ship
Fully rigged sailboats have minimum three masts with entirely square-rigged on the deck. On each mast, there are three distinct parts that the sails can be hanged over: the lower mast, the top mast and the top gallant mast. The spar that extends from the forward of this sailboat is bowsprit. Crew uses the bowsprit to support lines or the mast with stays. Between the masts are the space that the staysails can be hanged. Outboard of the square sails might be set studdingsails, and above the royals (uppermost sails) might be set sails with such names as skysail, moonraker, Trust to God, or Angel Whispers.
Cogs are the sailboats with single mast and a square sail. In the 12th century, the main commercial ship were the cogs in northern Europe. Changing the Cog was begun to become a new type of ship called Holk by 1400. The structure of the Holk changed by adding two more masts in the 15th century. The navies felt the necessity of additional masts on the larger boats, so Cog was put aside at the time of the Brig and the Barque appearance.
These are sailboats with two square-rigged masts. This kind of sails and mast configuration is also used in several types of commercial sailboats.
This is as same as the brig in number of the mast. However, the aft mast is fore and aft rigged.
These type of the sailboats has at least three masts.It is popular for its two square-rigged masts and one fore and aft rigged mast (mizzenmast).Fore and aft sails are hanged on the mizzenmast in the Barque and this is the differentiation factor between the Barque and the ship. Nowadays, several ships are changing to the Barque beacuase of its easier operation.
This type of sailboats has minimum three masts that are all fore and aft rigged, except the foremast which is fully-rigged, including a square fore course.
In the 16th and 19th centuries, it was the small sailboat with three masts and a singular hull which added a pronounced overhanging bow and stern, and rarely large than 200 tons in burden. The speed and the shallow draught are the Lateen Xebec features that led the skippers to choose this kind at first as the trading boat in the Mediterranean. On the other hand, the pirates of the Mediterranean (Corsairs) used this kind of boat for attacking to the commercial ships.
A sailboat with generally three lug rigged masts. This is one of the best sailboats for sailing as well as living in any weather and circumstances on the boat and its fame is because of its fast speed. (2,12,21)
What are the best sailboats for the beginners?
In the world of sailing, some people prefer to rent a sailboat periodically or join a sailing club. However, there are still somebodies who want to go sailing with their own yacht. There are a lot of advantages for being the owner of a sailboat such as you can go sailing to your beloved moorings whenever you want, you can do whatever you want on the boat in order to do away with your worries and you can bring all your personal apparatus with your own, thus it could be really easy to go on the sea after work and expect to see the beautiful sunset or go sailing at the weekend in order to get relaxed.
There are various kinds of boats that their owners want to sell to you on the markets. Except to the experienced and expert person, neither the beginners actually don’t know to look for the which kind nor to choose the best one. Additionally, they maybe don’t know how to sail properly in different situations on the sea, what the maintenance burden will likely be and even what it will be like to live on for a week or more.
Selection of the sailboats is really important as can influence your enjoyment and eventual success of your voyage. (6) However, there is no accurate answer for the question what the best sailboat for sailing is. Selection of the sailboat exactly rely on the sailors tastes as well as the different missions. In my opinion, as you are learning how to sail, spend some time to know the different types of the sailboats. (16)
Let me say something clearly, selecting a boat for sailing is not an easy decision to make. You should research a lot as well as speaking with the expert sailors in order to get some helps for the better choose. Each skipper that you are speaking with has different ideas about the best boat for sailing. (6,16)
The perfect first sailboat is:
Buying the sailboats forever is the order of the natural tendency but logically it is completely a mistake for the newcomers. Since the technology is developing and your necessities may be changed in the future, you shouldn’t buy any sailboat for the purpose of using endlessly.
Having enough space, operating easily and selling without difficulty generally are the features of the best first sailboat. Additionally, buying something that’s fairly common in your neighborhood. This will make it easier to find parts and advice and easier to sell in the future. (16)
For sailing, hull, mast, rudder and sail are the necessities that they are set up on most boats. but There is nothing better than the small boat to experience the pure joy of sheeting in and scooting off across a lake, bay, or even the open ocean. You can feel and touch the water as it flows past as well as the breeze. (17)
Your first sailboat should have more features that lead you to enjoy much more in your first sailing experience. Thus, the information below is the tips for buying the best first sailboat:
The length: 22-27′ is right in the sweet spot for size. (16) Speed, space and comfort depend on the length. But length is expensive; increase the length by 10% and expect the cost to go up about a third, all else equal. (4,7)
The Age: 10-30 years old is the best periods for a sailboat. You can suffer reduction in the value for any younger as you sell it and you can have additional support difficulties for too much older boats, although these depend on the type of the boat. (16) A boat, like a car, loses a lot of value by just driving it off the lot. So, in terms of saving money, there is a lot to recommend a used boat. However, the quality of maintenance in a used boat is hugely important so you will have more work to do to assess the particular boat in question. (4)
The hull material: Fiberglass is the best for manufacturing the sailboats since it withstands forever even in difficult weather conditions and needs less maintenance. (4,5)
Mast and sails configurations: The cutter or the sloop configurations are the best for the newcomers because of their efficiency and simplicity. (4) although, the best sailboat for the short-handed crew is ketch, this kind has technical complications, heavy weight and expensive price for being set up on the boat. The cutter arrangement provides a lot of option for you in heavy weather and you can use furler for your foresail as well. But the furler isn’t recommended, as it is not completely reliable, adds complexity, and gives you a less-than-optimal main sail trim. (5)
Keel type: The fin keel is better for the beginners’ sailboats, although There are a lot of people worldwide who are in agreement with that the full-length keel is better in difficult weather circumstances for a sailboat. The fin keel boat can maneuver much easier and sail better during the docking. (4) on the other hand, the centerboard keels cause the more complications, more maintenance support and increase the weight of the boat. Likewise, they can crash and take up space in your living quarters down below. (5)
Comfort or speed: The speed of the sailboats generally depends on the weight. The lighter sailboats go faster because of displacing less water, which gives it less wetted surface area, which lowers the drag. On the other hand, most people prefer the heavy-displacement sailboats specifically in the difficult weather circumstances, as they are more comfortable. There are also the speed lovers who aren’t satisfied to put aside the speed because of the comfort. Finally, it is up to you which one you choose the speed or the comfort. (4)
Mono-hull vs multi-hull: Mono-hulls are traditional in compare with the multi-hull catamaran and trimaran that their popularity is increasing. Mono-hull boats generally rely on ballast for stability and usually are displacement hulls. This ballast mostly forms around the 30% of the weight, although in the racing boats can increase up to 50%. Thus, it produces two problems: primarily, it leads the mono-hulls to have less maneuver and reduces their acceleration along with gives the mono-hulls tremendous inertia. Secondly, if the mono-hulls haven’t been built with buoyant foam or air tanks, whenever they fill with water, they will sink. (1,9) on the other hand, they are easier to handle. (4,5)
Multihulls rely on the geometry and the broad stance of the multiple hulls for their stability, eschewing any form of ballast. The design of the multi-hulls is such thing that has light weight as well as maintain structural integrity. They are often built with foam-filled flotation chambers and many modern commercial trimarans are rated as unsinkable, meaning that, should every crew compartment be completely filled with water, the hull itself has sufficient buoyancy to remain afloat. Top speed and high maneuverability are the two features of the multi-hulls. The absence of the ballast allows the crew to handle the sailboats better. Likewise, multi-hulls can go in shallow waters where mono-hulls can’t. (1)
This have been always the most debatable topic among the sailors. But finally, this exactly rely on the sailor’s skill and preferences related to how they sail and how they feel under sail. If you haven’t made decision yet, you can try a mono-hull for a week then a week on a catamaran. (4)
Be in good shape: This is really important that the boat you choose be in good shape which consist of All rigging, sails, masts, engine, electrical system, generator and … .
Using less energy consumers: when you are in a long journey on the sailboat, energy is really important. So, you should think about the precautions before departure. For example: you can use LED for navigational and internal lighting, energy-efficient refrigerator and … that are less energy consumers. Additionally, you can set up the solar panel or wind turbine that let you have energy for more hours. The engine equipped with a powerful generator isn’t efficient in the long trips. (5)
Eventually, in my opinion, the efficiency of the sailboats is more important than being comfortable on that. On the plus side, the time is really important. If you can travel in less days to arrive the destination with the faster boat, why you choose the slow one. Overall, despite the explanation, you should choose your sailboat.
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