The Great Dane 28
 Sailboat

The heavy displacement, long keeled Great Dane 28 cruising boat was designed by Aage Utzon in conjunction with Klaus Baess, and built in Denmark.

Great Dane 28 sailboat at anchorA Great Dane 28 long-keeled cruising yacht at anchor

Published Specification for the Great Dane 28

Hull Type: Long keel with transom-hung rudder

Hull Material:  GRP (fibreglass)

Length Overall: 28' 0" / 8.5m

Waterline Length: 21' 4" / 6.5m

Beam: 8' 2" / 2.5m

Draft: 4' 6" / 1.4m

Rig Type: Masthead Sloop (bit this one is rigged with an inner forestay)

Displacement: 8,500lb / 3,856kg

Designer: Aage Utzon/Klaus Baess

Builder: Klauss Baess, Copenhagen (Denmark)

Year First Built: 1965

Year Last Built: 1989

Number Built: 300

Owners Association: Great Dane 28 Owners' Club

Many thanks to Dan Tisoskey for submitting the photograph.

Published Design Ratios for the Great Dane 28

Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: 13.8

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

Ballast/Displacement Ratio: 46.7

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

Displacement/Length Ratio: 391

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

Comfort Ratio: 34.3

  • 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

Capsize Screening Formula: 1.6

  • 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 Great Dane 28

  1. She's considered under-powered when under sail;
  2. She's stiffer than most other similar vessels in her class;
  3. She's in the ultraheavy category;
  4. Crew comfort in a seaway is commensurate with that of a moderate offshore cruising boat;
  5. She's better suited for ocean passages than most other similar vessels in her class.

Sailboats designed by Aage Utzon include:

  • Great Dane 28
  • Sagitta 30
  • Scan 22

Danish by nationality, Aage Utzon was educated as a naval engineer in Newcastle (UK) following which he was offered the position of works engineer at Aalborg Shipyard in Denmark. Here he gained an excellent reputation as a designer of seaworthy sailboats.

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