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Old 18-06-2010, 18:04   #1
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Sudden Attraction to Hunters

I have to confess a sudden attraction to Hunter sailboats. I know this is not fashionable here because they are not considered "real" boats. So I started reading though various posts/threads here (1 I even started and had forgotten about) and on Sailnet. Seems there are lots of "I heard this..." and "I heard that...", but like most "stories" people can not provide real articles or links for a Hunter breaking apart. Not to say I wouldn't want to be caught in the perfert strom in one, but then I don't want to get caught in any such thing regardless and what are the odds of this anyway (tried of planning for the 0.1% odds)!

Really now - what's not to like? They are very roomly inside and in the cockpit. Have been around and regardless of what the purist thinks are not death traps. Yes they have short comings, but what boat doesn't unless you are going to spend $750k+ (and then it stilldoes). Some people say they flex too much, but compared to what? And you can stiffen it (but I wonder if that would just stress the hulls as flex is just give and everything flexes so it doesn't break). They tend to have low teal/wood so would have to find something other that sanding to waste time on. Yes I'm not sold on that BR rig without backstay, not because of mast stress but because of running ability. Yes the liner/hull construction can make it a pain to run wires etc, so what there are lots of ways to run wires etc.

One of the things I'm noticed is regardless of all the Hunter bashing is that the listed pricing for Hunters are pretty good (meaning not low compared to other boats). For the money you get around a 5-10 year younger boat compared to a "quality" boat. So when it comes down to it a used Hunter is probably a better buy.

So what am I missing? And for those that are going to start the bashing - PROVE IT with a link etc to something to back it up. If you have not owned or sailed on one or have a CLOSE real friend who has and have told you of something you are just spreading rumors.

And here is a link to just a boat I looked at, why isn't this a good cruiser where you are going to be living on the boat and once in a while have to do a long passage (ie you plan the trip and pick a provenweather window)?

1991 Hunter Passage Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com
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Old 18-06-2010, 18:47   #2
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All boats have their plusses and minuses. I think the Hunters in particular look very nice at the boat shows but I have no experience other than that with them. So before deciding on a new boat for ocean passages to buy in the 40' range, I thought a good starting place might be to compare the basic specifications of each boat. I liked much about the Hunters but with an angle of vanishing stability of 109 degrees on the model in question (before adding fuel and stores above the centre of gravity), I rated it at the bottom of my list. However, I have to concede that for impressing my friends at the dock, the Hunter leaves what I bought for dead.

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Old 18-06-2010, 18:48   #3
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DAMN IT! I thought this was a gun thread! I too fell in love with a Hunter...1989 35.5 What a great boat, but look out for deck delamination...Doesn't look like a bleach bottle either!
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Old 18-06-2010, 19:00   #4
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get yourself to the doctor immediately, you must not be feeling well
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Old 18-06-2010, 19:12   #5
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Yeah it's hard to get your world rocked!

As far as a vanishing angle, that's an example of the 0.1% of time boat selection where you chose a boat only on fear. And that model I used had a capsize of 1.97 so it isn't going to get knockd over and drown you any more that any other (and it's all theory anyway).
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Old 18-06-2010, 19:25   #6
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Chartered one for two weeks and do not like the no backstay rig. Among other things, the upper shroud leads so far aft you can't ease the main very far before it chafes on the rigging.
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Old 18-06-2010, 19:31   #7
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Please, where are you finding the AVS on this boat? Thanks saltymonkey
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Old 18-06-2010, 21:01   #8
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Let me tell you how I came to buy my first Hunter. I'd been racing pretty seriously well into my forties, but after winning six club championships had finally discovered cruising, partially because I was growing weary of being beaten up in the ultralights I was campaigning. My wife got a job at Stanford, necessitating a move away from our beloved Monterey, and while she started to look for houses, I started to look for liveaboard boats. I found a gorgeous late-70s Swan 41 that needed a bit of work but that we could have paid for out of the equity from selling our house. I took my wife to see it, and she complained that it was dark and stuffy. It was a total no-go. She kept looking for houses, and I kept looking for boats.

She finally found a house she wanted to buy, which meant we could afford it during the dot-com boom when housing prices in the Bay Area were totally ridiculous, but when I looked at it I complained that it was dark and stuffy. Worse than a Swan. In desperation, I asked her to ride with me over to Alameda and look at a few boats, explaining that if she didn't find something she liked we could by the house we both knew we would hate.

We went aboard one of the larger Hunters, and it was light, airy, and had a huge galley. She said, "I could live on something like this."

The rest is history.

I've certainly owned more prestigious boats than my two Hunters. I've owned several boats that were far less seaworthy but that folks down at the yacht club considered to be more "bluewater" than the Hunters, this despite the fact that there was no basis for this prejudice once you sailed the boat. I have a sneaky suspicion that one of the reasons that our more macho brethren enjoy Hunter-bashing is that these our boats that women consider to be civilized.

My wife wants to go sailing tomorrow, despite the fact that this is how we've occupied ourselves for the past several weekends. She never wanted to do that when I spent my weekends on high-end ultralight racers.

How cool is that?
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Old 18-06-2010, 23:19   #9
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winning six club championships
Ostracized by the other members! We've had pricks like that at our club that win every season year in year out. Awards night and they sit smugly at their table overflowing with prizes, and goodies, and the chics... Talk about wanting those bums to go cruising! Either that or plant some baby goose barnacles...



As for boat selection I think its all some testosterone thing... guys who select, or guys who let their women have some say in the decision.

Look at the photos below of some idiot at the Boat Show. I was happily taking photos but it wasn't till I got home and looked at them did it become obvious:

Which boat was she naturally enjoying more?

One she is sitting down like an adult. The other boat is is being a goose.
Adult boat is DARK (see in photo). Goose boat is light and open.

So to help select the boat -wether it be a Hunter, Swan, Bene, whatever, take your wife or female freind and watch her. She will show you which is the better cruising boat.
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Old 19-06-2010, 01:46   #10
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Hi Saltmonkey

AVS figures for Hunter 45CC quoted by Cruising Helmsmen magazine (Australia) in 2006 and there is a link to it from the Australian Distributors website at www.usyachts.com.au

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Old 19-06-2010, 03:32   #11
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I like the Hunters and my wife likes it very much.

I quite like the idea of a bilge keel hunter. Happy wife, shallow draft and the ability to park it on its feet so you don't have to swim underneath for minor issues/repairs.
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Old 19-06-2010, 03:54   #12
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In our community we often read advice from those with a one eyed view. But I would respectfully suggest you could find one of the many other boats that are just as well laid out as a Hunter for livaboard activity BUT able to sail better so you get the best of both...........

I've only been on US Hunter and frankly - it sailed like a dog. It was a 38 footer and 'modified' by having a furling main. I think a majority of 25 footers would have been quicker in cruise mode. Same sad performance under engine. Took ages for it to bite in reverse - thought it would never stop!

Finally for cruising, we felt that version whilst airy and spacious lacked much of the storage space required to tuck stuff away.

So IMHO we all need to remember horses for courses.

If it is a Hunter styled boat required to get you out sailing together - who can argue with that - as it is certainly better than sitting on the beach? But there are other yachts with similar feel and benefits below decks, that better fill the other needs also. Maybe shop around a little more before you buy? Being one eyed as a buyer is just as wrong as being one eyed in giving an opinion!

Good luck
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Old 19-06-2010, 04:57   #13
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Originally Posted by swagman View Post
In our community we often read advice from those with a one eyed view. But I would respectfully suggest you could find one of the many other boats that are just as well laid out as a Hunter for livaboard activity BUT able to sail better so you get the best of both...........
JOHN

OK, show it to me please.
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Old 19-06-2010, 05:39   #14
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I think performance in a Hunter may vary quite a bit from model to model. Some Hunters I have heard to be quite fast. One beat the clipper ship record around the Horn NY to SF. I think a Hunter also won the Miami MoBay race many years back. Some models, on the other hand, do not seem to do so well.
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Old 19-06-2010, 05:57   #15
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LOL, those are fun shots Mark, thanks for sharing!! cheers... Made my day.. Wish we had that much fun while shopping for boats..
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