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Safety Features - MacGregor 26M

The boat has built-in solid foam flotation to keep it afloat in the event of damage. It won't sail fast when fully flooded, but it beats swimming. Most competing boats do not offer this essential safety protection, and their heavy keels can pull them straight to the bottom. Don't get a boat without solid flotation!

The 26 is self righting with the water ballast tank filled. This means that the boat will return to an upright position after being pulled over on its side with the sails set. A ballasted sailboat is very much like the inflatable toy with a weight in the bottom that kids use as punching bags. The weight makes the toy return to vertical after it is poked.

The optional roller furling system allows quick and easy reduction of sail area in the event winds become too strong.

The MacGregor 26 is a really good powerboat. At high speed, it has a remarkably comfortable, stable ride. The very sharp entry slices thru waves efficiently. It is highly maneuverable, and only a light touch on the wheel is required to hold a perfect course or to make sharp turns.

Top speed is obtained with an empty ballast tank, no rigging, and one person aboard. You will lose about 1 mph for each added 100 lbs. of weight.

For really lazy sailing or for sailing in high winds, you can use the mainsail alone. You lose some speed, but the boat will handle very well. The mainsail has a set of reef points that will reduce its area by forty percent. This is essential for sailing in high winds, and great for learning to sail in normal winds. In really heavy winds, the boat will actually sail faster with a reefed mainsail. Reefing is quick and simple.

The relatively flat bottom required for high speed powering creates one of the most stable sailboats you will ever find.

The cockpit is self bailing. The cockpit floor is above the water level, and any water that comes into the cockpit simply drains out through the open transom. This is both a convenience and a big safety factor. (A swamped boat is no joy, and having to bail out a cockpit full of rain water is no fun either.)

The steering seat hinges up and out of the way to allow for easy boarding while the boat is in the water or on its trailer. This is a lot easier than climbing up and over the relatively high side in order to get on or off the boat. In the down position, it makes a comfortable steering seat for the captain, and helps keep the crew from falling off the rear end of the boat.

The 26 has hatches that can be secured to keep water out of the boat. The most seaworthy object is an empty bottle with the lid screwed on. We have come pretty close to this concept with the 26. Most small powerboats are open to the sea and totally unsuitable for offshore or rough water operation. Also, there are no thru hulls below the waterline that might allow water leaks into the interior of the boat.

The 26 has two engines, the sails and the motor. If a conventional powerboat's engine quits when you are away from land or in a remote part of a lake, you are stuck there until outside help arrives. In many cases, attempts to start the engine drain the batteries so even radio communication becomes impossible. With the 26, simply raise the sails, and head for home. There are calms now and then, but there will always be enough wind to get you on your way.

Other safety features include non skid deck surfaces, bow pulpit, cockpit rails and strong lifelines.

 

 

Notice: The 26M is in production by MacGregor. The information contained on this page is subject to change, and may not fully represent the boat as it is manufactured. We will endeavor to update these pages as more information is released by MacGregor. If you would like to be notified when new materials are added to the site, send us an e-mail by click here.


 

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