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What is freeboard?

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Old 03-09-2006, 04:44 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Storm, less weight can definitely make your boat sit higher in the water and give you more freeboard.

And I think that when most people are talking about "freeboard", on here or anywhere else, in most situations they are really talking about "cockpit depth".
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Old 03-09-2006, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

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Originally Posted by noboat
And I think that when most people are talking about "freeboard", on here or anywhere else, in most situations they are really talking about "cockpit depth".
I think that most all around boaters... (grew up around all different kids of boats and learn their terminology on the docks) use the term freeboard correctly to describe the distance bewteen the gunwale and the waterline. I can't ever remember anyone at either of my yacht clubs using the term freeboard to describe cockpit depth.
Especially those without cockpits.
We tend to refer to "cockpit depth" as "inside gunwale height."

I think that maybe more perf boaters may use freeboard to describe cockpit depth. (As we see here on OSO.) But not more boaters in general.

("gunwale" of course is pronounced "gunnell.")
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:10 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Dunno bout that FR.
I grew up on sport fishers and considered freeboard the depth inside the boat.
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:39 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Technically, the aforementioned definition of measurement from gunwale to water line is correct.
I think most of us consider freeboard to be "cockpit depth" - namely, how high the gunwale comes up to the side of your body.
The thought would mistakenly be that the floor of the cockpit is level with the water line at idle. This is not necessarily the case.



Or something like that...
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:56 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Panther
In rough water it also makes a big difference when a big wave comes up behind you when you're moving slowly along.

I've been on a few boats, no names, that sit low in the water that got swamped and washed water over the swim platform, onto the sun pad and almost into the cockpit.

On one eventful trip the boat with low freeboard was taking waves from the beam and all the water was going into the vents and causing the motors to stall, it was like the motors were playing hot potato.

Everyone on board ran into the cabin and pulled out the ugly orange life jackets for the rest of the ride, were cold and soaking wet.
Like this one? Yes it's an Apache.

Last edited by Fanatic; 08-10-2007 at 12:51 AM.
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:58 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

They are almost synonymous. Not every one but as a rule of thumb, the freeboard is directly related to the cockpit depth. Ya can't have cockpit depth without freeboard.

Last edited by Panther; 03-09-2006 at 06:02 PM.
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:59 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fanatic
Like this one?
Sucks for him! Looks calm though.
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Old 03-09-2006, 06:00 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

If the majority of us {Performance boaters} think that Freeboard = Cockpit depth then The majority of us {Performance boaters} need to do some reading...

Start with "Chapmans"....Our "bible"
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Old 03-09-2006, 06:25 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by birdog
If the majority of us {Performance boaters} think that Freeboard = Cockpit depth then The majority of us {Performance boaters} need to do some reading...

Start with "Chapmans"....Our "bible"
Absolutely!!

But I think many refer to "Freeboard" - in laymens terms, or in practice - as how deep you sit in the boat. No, it's not the real definition, but we know what ya mean when you say it.

A much simpler definition is "if this boat makes an erratic move, either due to strange wave or driver error, how safe do I feel that I will not be ejected"? Using this definition, a higher Freeboard means your body will be thrown into the Gunwale, instead of over it - due to you own body's Center of Gravity vs. Gunwale height (if measured from cockpit depth)
Which brings up another question - is the Gunwale height measured from the cockpit floor??? I don't know, I'm asking??
Maybe we "Performance boaters" should be refering to it as "this boat has a lot of "Gunwale", instead of "Freeboard".

And, for us to have this much discussion and opinion on the matter, we must all be having a serious dose of cabin fever.
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Old 03-09-2006, 06:54 PM
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Default Re: What is freeboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bouyhunter
Absolutely!!

But I think many refer to "Freeboard" - in laymens terms, or in practice - as how deep you sit in the boat. No, it's not the real definition, but we know what ya mean when you say it.
Exactly!
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