The Bowman 40 Sailboat
Specs & Key Performance Indicators

The Bowman 40, an aft-cockpit cutter, was designed by Chuck Paine and built in the UK by Southern Boat Building Ltd.

A Bowman 40 sailboat at anchorA Bowman 40

Published Specification for the Bowman 40

Underwater Profile: Scheel keel & skeg-hung rudder

Hull Material: GRP (Fibreglass)

Length Overall: 39'11" (12.2m)

Waterline Length: 32'0" (9.8m)

Beam: 12'7" (3.8m)

Draft: 4'11" (1.5m)

Rig Type: Cutter

Displacement: 19,000lb (8,618kg)

Designer: Chuck Paine

Builder: Southern Boat Building Ltd (UK)

Year First Built: 1987


Published Design Ratios for the Bowman 40

1. Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: 16.8

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

2. Ballast/Displacement Ratio: Not published

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

3. Displacement/Length Ratio: 259

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

4. Comfort Ratio: 29.3

  • 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

5. Capsize Screening Formula: 1.9

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

read more about these Key Performance Indicators...


Summary Analysis of the Design Ratios for the Bowman 40

1. A Sail Area/Displacement Ratio of 16.8 suggests that the Bowman 40 will, in the right conditions, approach her maximum hull speed readily and satisfy the sailing performance expectations of most cruising sailors.

2. In the absence of any published Ballast/Displacement for the Bowman 40 we are unable to make any assessment of this element of her stiffness under sail, but this review by Yachting Monthly says "she’s stiff and easily capable of standing up to her canvas".

3. A Displacement/Length Ratio of 259, tells us the Bowman 40 is a moderate displacement cruiser, which means she'll carry all your cruising gear without it having a dramatic effect on her performance. Most of today's sailboats intended for offshore cruising fall into this displacement category.

4. Ted Brewer's Comfort Ratio of 29.3 suggests that crew comfort of a Bowman 40 in a seaway is similar to what you would associate with the motion of a moderate bluewater cruising boat - a predictable and acceptable motion for most seasoned sailors.

5. The Capsize Screening Formula (CSF) of 1.9 indicates that a Bowman 40 would be a safer choice of sailboat for an ocean passage than one with a CSF of more than 2.0. 


Other sailboats in the Bowman range include:

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