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I took “Kinsale”, which had recently been phased out of the Moorings charter program in the BVI, as partial payment
/ trade-in as they didn't want to wait until Kinsale sold in order to buy Zanshin I. Chris of
BVI Yacht Sales arranged the somewhat complex deal, where I'd part
with Zanshin I in exchange for ownership of Kinsale and other consideration, which I would then immediately
list for sale. As I wasn't in need of funds and the purchaser really did want Zanshin I I acceded to this request. After
both boats had been surveyed and their faults fixed I no longer had my Jeanneau 49DS but a Bénéteau 43. I spent a
week aboard the boat at Nanny Cay before venturing out for the first time - just as I was ready to leave the winds picked up and
were in excess of 20 knots and as Kinsale had a full-battened mainsail with a reefing system with which I wasn't familiar
I decided to wait for the weather to settle before venturing out in my new (but hopefully temporary) sailboat. I did use the time
at dock investigating the boat from stem to stern and doing a bit of cleaning at the same time and saw many similarities between
the Jeanneau and Bénéteau parts and construction; but the Cyclades series is built specifically for charter and light
sailing and there were significant differences in weight and solidity between the two boats.
Nonetheless once I got out of Nanny Cay for my first sail (which ended up being one with just jib across to The Bight on Norman Island) it was a fun boat to sail and very different in handling to Zanshin I. I was fortunate that I managed to pick up a mooring ball the first time around - a lull in the gusty winds helped me there.
While Kinsale sailed well and very fast, she is tender compared to Zanshin I and her motion, both at anchor and at sea, is much more pronounced. Even at anchor she tends to swing quite a bit more than her larger and heavier predecessor and it took me quite a while to redevelop my seas legs to her motion.
The only feature that I decidedly did not like was her prop walk. Both Solitaire and Zanshin I had virtually no prop walk in reverse but my three reversing docking attempts were ...exciting...; the first time I put her into reverse in order to execute a backwards port turn I was certain that the keel had grounded in the marina (despite the fathometer telling me different) since she basically just spun around her axis instead of going backwards. Then, when she got a bit of reverse speed, she crabbed sideways and still wouldn't turn to port despite the lack of both wind and current! I figured out that by using judicious bursts of power and subsequent neutral gear I could get speed and steerage but it was a bit of a harrowing experience in the narrow confines of Nanny Cay.