Bluewater Sailboat – Hudson Force 50


The Bluewater Sailboat Hudson Force 50 is a full-keeled pilothouse cutter ketch designed by William Garden, a US, and Canadian naval architect. They were introduced in 1973 and were manufactured at a rate of twelve to fifteen per year in Taiwan until 1984 when the boatyard burned down.

The molds for the Force 50 come from the same plug that generated the Formosa 51, therefore they are essentially identical. According to reports, William Garden struck a “private label” contract with Formosa, and some say the Force 50 has a more seaworthy classic flavor with modest enhancements. Because of her reduced freeboard, the Bluewater Hudson Force 50 is said to have less space below decks.

Hudson Force 50
Hudson Force 50
  • LOA: 65′ 0″
  • LOD: 51’0″
  • LWL: 39′ 0″
  • Beam: 14′ 2″
  • Draft: 6′ 2″
  • Displacement: 52,000 lbs.
  • Ballast: 12.000 lbs.
  • Bridge Clearance: 65′ 0″
  • Headroom 6′ 4″
  • Engine: 85hp Ford Lehman
  • Fuel Tankage: 180 US Gal.
  • Water Tankage: 75 US Gal.
  • Designer: William Garden
  • Builder: Hudson Custom Boats / Ta Chiao
  • Year Introduced: 1973
  • Year Ended: 1983

Below Deck

Three staterooms: aft master with head, two front double guest chambers with shared head and step in shower. Lower saloon with desk and pilothouse with inside helm station. To starboard is an L-shaped settee, forward to starboard is a double guest cabin, and to port is the head and shower. Upper and lower cabinets to starboard, workbench and cupboards to port.


This is a go-anywhere Bluewater sailboat with a traditional touch, including a long bowsprit and, on some boats, wooden spars. Above and below decks, teak abounds.

The 30-year-old sailboat Hudson Force 50 was put to the test in challenging circumstances during a solo trip from Los Angeles to Monterey. Despite encountering winds of 55 to 60 mph and waves of 25 feet, the boat performed admirably, withstanding the force of the waves. The boat’s strength is outstanding, and she is sure that she can keep sailors safe while at sea.

Quick Notes

The state of these Bluewater sailboats varies greatly; some have been well cared for, while others have been neglected to the point of “desperately needing a refurbishment.” Prices for these boats may appear low, but keep in mind that repairs on boats of this size can be significant, three to five times more than an equal 30-foot boat is a reasonable rule of thumb.

Check the hull on haulout, the numerous through-hull fittings, bulkheads, chainplates and rigging, engine, drivetrain, electrical systems, and especially the metal fuel tanks, with your surveyor. Water infiltration in the deck and pilothouse area can be an issue at times. On sailboats with wooden spars, inspect the base of the mast and booms as well.

If you are interested in learning more about the specifications and details of a sailboat, we recommend visiting the page Bluewater Sailboat data by  Ocean Wave Sail. This page provides comprehensive information and is an excellent resource for anyone seeking detailed information about 1000+ sailboats.

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