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Wednesday 14 December 2011

Nicholson 48

I’m not really a fan of centre cockpit yachts, but the exception proves the rule as they say. The first time we went aboard a Nicholson 48 was in Scotland Bay, Trinidad. Growler monkeys could be heard among the steep and thickly wooded shore as we rowed over to swap some books, our conversation led to an early evening beer and on to a dram from the ships supply of single malt.

Our hosts proudly showed us around their boat and what we discovered was a strongly built and hugely practical long distance cruiser. Designed in the 1970’s for serious offshore cruising the Nicholson has a full, encapsulated keel, comfortable motion and well planned accommodation. With a sail area to displacement of 12.07 the Nic is perhaps a little under canvassed but the ketch rig, with everything in board, is easy to work with a small crew. The deep centre cockpit with permanent cover works equally well offering protection and security from the in the blazing Caribbean heat or the cold, wet waters of the Western Isles.

Although the styling places the Nicholson firmly in the 1970s – touches such as the venetian blinds seen on many examples, the design has a timeless quality and an image which speaks of quality and fitness for purpose which has aged well.

LOA 47' 6"
LWL 34' 3"
Beam 12'
Draft 7' or 5'5" (shoal draft version)
Displacement 31,300lbs
SA/Dis 12.07
Bal/Dis .32

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