The Beneteau First 28 Sailboat

The Beneteau First 28 is a 28' sloop, designed by Jean-Marie Finot and built for coastal sailing by Beneteau in the early 1980s. There is both a swing keel version and a shallow draft version.

A Beneteau First 28 sailboat under sailMany thanks to Arnaud Chevillot for this great pic of his Beneteau First 28 'YoYo'

Published Specification for the Beneteau First 28

Hull Type: Fin keel with spade rudder

Hull Material:  GRP (fibreglass)

Length Overall: 28' 3" / 8.6m

Waterline Length: 24' 3" / 7.4m

Beam: 9' 10" / 3.0m

Draft: 5' 8" / 1.72m

Rig Type: Masthead sloop

Displacement: 7,000lb / 3,175kg

Designer: Jean-Marie Finot

Builder: Beneteau (France)

Year First Built: 1980

Year Last Built: 1982

Number Built: 600

Owners Association: Beneteau Owners' Association (UK)

Published Design Ratios for the Beneteau First 28

Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: 16.5

  • Less 16 would be considered under-powered;
  • 16 to 20 would indicate reasonably good performance;
  • Over 20 suggests relatively high performance.

Ballast/Displacement Ratio: 37.1

  • Under 40: less stiff, less powerful
  • Over 40: stiffer, more powerful

Displacement/Length Ratio: 186

  • Under 100: Ultralight
  • 100 to 200: Light
  • 200 to 275: Moderate
  • 275 to 350: Heavy
  • Over 350: Ultraheavy

Comfort Ratio: 17.2

  • Under 20 indicates a lightweight racing boat
  • 20 to 30 indicates a coastal cruiser
  • 30 to 40 indicates a moderate offshore cruising boat
  • 40 to 50 indicates a heavy offshore boat
  • Over 50 indicates an extremely heavy offshore boat

Capsize Screening Formula: 2.2

  • Under 2.0 (the lower the better): Better suited for ocean passages
  • Over 2.0: Less suited for ocean passages

read more about these all-revealing numbers...

Summary Analysis of Published Design Ratios for the Beneteau First 28

A Sail Area/Displacement Ratio of 16.5 suggests that the Beneteau First 28 will approach her maximum hull speed readily and satisfy the sailing performance expectations of most cruising sailors.

A Ballast/Displacement Ratio of 37.1 means that unless the bulk of the ballast is concentrated in a bulb at the foot of her keel, the Beneteau First 28 will have a tendency to heel excessively in a gust, and she'll need to be reefed early to keep her sailing upright in a moderate breeze. 

A Displacement/Length Ratio of 186, tells us she's clearly a light displacement sailboat. If she's loaded with too much heavy cruising gear her performance will suffer dramatically.

Ted Brewer's Comfort Ratio of 17.2 suggests that crew comfort in a seaway is akin to the motion of a lightweight racing boat. Upwind the Beneteau First 28 will be tender and will slam enough to shake your fillings out with a lively motion that most cruising sailors have no desire to get used to.

Ted Brewer's Comfort Ratio of ## suggests that crew comfort in a seaway is similar to what you would associate with the motion of an extremely heavy bluewater boat - and that's as comfortable as life ever gets on a sailing boat!

Her Capsize Screening Formula of 2.2 tells us that the Beneteau First 28 would not be a good choice of sailboat for ocean passage-making, owing to the increased risk of capsize in strong winds and heavy seas when compared to a sailboat with a CSF of less than 2.0.

Other Boats in Beneteau First range include:

  • First 10R 
  • First 14 
  • First 18 
  • First 20 
  • First 21.7 
  • First 210 
  • First 211 
  • First 22 
  • First 235 
  • First 235 SK 
  • First 24 
  • First 25 
  • First 26 
  • First 260
  • First 265 
  • First 27 
  • First 28
  • First 285 
  • First 29 
  • First 300 
  • First 305 
  • First 31.7 
  • First 310 
  • First 32 
  • First 325 
  • First 32S5 
  • First 33.7 
  • First 345 
  • First 35 
  • First 35S5 
  • First 35S7 
  • First 36 
  • First 36S7 
  • First 375 
  • First 38 
  • First 38S5 
  • First 40 
  • First 405 
  • First 41S5
  • First 42 
  • First 42S7 
  • First 435 
  • First 44.7 
  • First 45
  • First 456 
  • First 45F5 
  • First 47.7 
  • First 50 
  • First 51 
  • First 53F5 
  • First Class 10 
  • First Class 12 
  • First Class 7 
  • First Class 7.5 
  • First Class 8 
  • First Class Challenge 
  • First Class Europe
  • First IMS 40.7 
  • First Yacht 53 

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