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The balance and handling were better than I ever dared hope. For all of the long discussion here at the beginning of the project about how far forward the centerboard is, balance is about perfect. There is light pressure on the tiller, just enough to make her start to round up when you let go but the rudder angle is about 1 degree. I would actually prefer a tad more rudder angle. Striking the jib can easily be the first sail reduction without compromising steering.
The steering is surprisingly insensitive to sheeting the mizzen in and out. She tracks like she was on rails but tacks surely without any fiddling with the sails. And, she is fast. Large sailboats near us didn't seem notably faster in relationship to us than when I'm on my 32 footer.
A real revelation sailing a boat like this with a low spread out sail plan. Despite very modest stability, there isn't nearly as much heel angle change in gusts as with my high aspect ratio keel sloop, she just seems to go faster instead of heeling first. Very comfortable to sit in. If I was just going to go sailing around for an afternoon, I would rather do it in this boat than in my cruising boat.