Is the RL34 suitable for long coastal cruising? Can it handle heavy weather? I am considering buying an RL34 for coastal cruising from Brisbane to Whitsundays group. Does the lift keel pose any problems for this use.
I do not know RL34 but I have RL28 sail no 34 and had to sail recently in winds to up to 45 knots and seas 3-5 metres high. The boat has performed beautifully. I would expect RL34 to be as good or even better than my boat is. My boat has been modified by the former owners for serious sailing with extra stays, inboard diesel, stronger rudder etc and was sailed from Gove in NT to Philipines.
i did thousands of hours racing and cruising c-nymph(no autohelm ! blast),but designed and fitted self tacking headsail for her and a fully battened main with lazyjacks and powerful winch to retension main.they are a great boat but you need to reef early and use youre backstay and traveller judiciously to spill excess wind and drive her flat not overheeled. but she is to windward a great sea kindly hull, better than the old ior hulls! of her vintage.