Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 06-05-2013, 07:05   #1
Registered User
 
thomm225's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Hampton Roads
Boat: 1974 Bristol 27
Posts: 3,469
Catalina 30 (the real story)

Can someone give me some accurate information on the Catalina 30? I've heard that it has weak chainplates, that there is a problem that causes the keel to drop somewhat. (Catalina Smile) and that they are not strong enough for serious cruising.

And yet I've also heard that they've sailed everywhere, that it's a 10,000 lb 30' boat, and that there have been almost 6500 of them built! Something is not adding up.

I'll be looking at a 1987 model btw.
__________________

__________________
thomm225 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 07:17   #2
Registered User
 
Cotemar's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Boat: FP, Helia 44 Evo
Posts: 5,717
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

Don't believe everything you hear.
Catalina 30 is a sweet boat and a great value.
They are very well built. That was the very first boat we owned and learned a lot from her.
1) A Catalina smile is the hull to keel joint that flex’s a little and cracks the non flexible bottom paint.
2) They are one of the best and roomiest 30 foot designs out their
__________________

__________________
Cotemar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 12:57   #3
Senior Cruiser
 
SkiprJohn's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2006
Location: Kea'au, Big Island, Hawaii
Boat: Cascade, Sloop, 42 - "Casual"
Posts: 14,192
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

The Catalina 30 is one of the most popular boats out there. As my friend Martin says, "kind of like the Chevy BelAir of the boat market."
If you want to know something about them just ask a marine surveyor. I don't think they would charge you to ask their opinions about a particular production boat in general.
There might even be a surveyor on the forum that might give you an opinion.
kind regards,
__________________
John
SkiprJohn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 13:58   #4
Registered User
 
youmeandthed's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Vancouver, BC
Boat: Union Polaris 36
Posts: 153
Images: 1
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

It was the first boat we owned, and for a weekender/ a few weeks a year vacation boat it is probably the best for your buck. It doesn't have the tankage for distance cruising, but the livable space is almost as much as our 36ft boat.

If I was in the market for a boat to keep at a slip and use on weekends or for a few weeks a year I wouldn't hesitate to buy one again.
__________________
www.youmeandthed.blogspot.com

Life's a dream, live it!
youmeandthed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 19:08   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Hillsborough, N.C. (Boat located: Tortola, BVI)
Boat: Lagoon 42
Posts: 134
I think it's hard to go wrong with a Catalina 30 as a coastal cruiser. For weekends and even a full week to ten days every now and again she is a great boat. The C-30 is well built and is lots of fun to sail. We've done several short (1 - 2 day) offshore legs on our C-30. The C-30 is definitely a coastal cruiser, but comfortable offshore in good to moderate conditions for short passages.

If she surveys well with a reputable surveyor, you will have a very solid, reliable boat. I've owned my '87 for ten years now and sailed her extensively. I am very happy with my C-30.
__________________
Jim Woodall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 19:42   #6
Senior Cruiser
 
Starbuck's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2005
Location: Long Beach, CA
Posts: 827
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

Another satisfied customer of an '87 here.
__________________
s/y Elizabeth Catalina 34 MkII
"Man must have just enough faith in himself to have adventures, and just enough doubt of himself to enjoy them." G. K. Chesterfield
Starbuck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 19:47   #7
CF Adviser
 
Bash's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: sausalito
Boat: 14 meter sloop
Posts: 7,260
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

You're talking about the longest continued production run of any keelboat ever made. Ever.

You don't suppose there's something more than a glitch there?
__________________
cruising is entirely about showing up--in boat shoes.
Bash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 19:54   #8
Marine Service Provider

Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: St Augustine, FL
Boat: Woods Vardo 34 Cat
Posts: 2,827
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

They aren't the best for "serious" cruising. Have a look at a S2 9.2 for a similar, but much better built boat.
__________________
Check out my MoJo: Facebook.com/mojomarine1
Boatguy30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-05-2013, 19:58   #9
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: vancouver, canada
Boat: hunter 31
Posts: 609
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

We shopped specifically for a Catalina 30, since it fit well with the size we wanted, the available inventory, and price. We ended up with a Hunter 31, however, since we liked the layout and the teak and holly sole. I have seen as many as 8 Catalina 30s docked in a row at a local marina. The numbers tell the story. Great mid-size coastal cruiser.
__________________
shorebird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2013, 09:02   #10
Registered User
 
JK n Smitty's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Hingham, MA
Boat: Catalina 310
Posts: 637
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomm225 View Post
Can someone give me some accurate information on the Catalina 30?
As others have stated, the Catalina 30 had the longest production run of any sailboat. It was entered into the sailing hall of fame in 2001. IMHO, it is one of the best all-around boats ever designed and built because it is a cost point that let a lot of people get into sailing that otherwise would have been priced out of the market.

It was built in 3 models, named Mark I (1974 to 1986), Mark II (1986 to 1993) and the Mark III (1994 to 1997). (These years will become important to answering one of your questions below) A new design, the Mark IV was supposed to be put on the market in 1997 but instead it was put on the market in 1998 as the C310. Some didn't like the non-traditional layout of the C310. Later the C309 was put on the market to get back to the traditional layout of the C30.

As others have said, it's a great coastal cruiser (although there are many different definitions of coastal cruising). But many people have pushed this. Here is a blog for a guy who sailed his to New Zealand from the west coast. We plan to sail our C310 down to the Caribbean.

You will not find a boat with a better support group. There are Catalina owners associations in just about every major port. An International Catalina 30 Owners Association. And an extremely helpful forum at Catalinaowners.com. Oh, and a source for factory direct replacement parts from Catalina Direct.

Quote:
I've heard that it has weak chainplates, that there is a problem that causes the keel to drop somewhat. (Catalina Smile) and that they are not strong enough for serious cruising.
I have never really heard of a specific Catalina chainplate issue. But the older C30s are nearing 40 years old. If you don't have a good regular maintenance program, you will have issues with any chainplates. This would likely include new chainplates in just about any boat but the time you get to 20-40 years old.

The Catalina Smile is the result of using wood for a keel stub that was encapsulated in fiberglass. The keel bolts then pass through the wooden stub. Over time the bolts loosen and small amounts of water are allowed in to the wood. As a result the wood rots and the keel starts to sink. Hence the Catalina Smile. Hey, they were part of the pioneer group of fiberglass builders and you learn things along the way. By the Mark II's they realized this mistake and fixed it.

There are two other known problems with early C30s: the mast compression post block and the "trailer hitch" wiring. The mast compression post block is similar to keel stub issue. Here is the basics of the fix. The "trailer hitch" wiring issue was just using a cheap part to save money that ended up not being a good decision. Here is a good write up of the fix for that. I believe both of these were fixed by 1989 to 1990.

Quote:
And yet I've also heard that they've sailed everywhere, that it's a 10,000 lb 30' boat, and that there have been almost 6500 of them built! Something is not adding up.
There is a lot of production boat bashing that happens. Sure, we would all love to have an expensive, custom built boat. But most of us can't afford a boat like that and would be left at the dock if only custom boats were available. There are certainly some corners cut in production boats. Some aren't that big of a deal, others can be major problems.

Quote:
I'll be looking at a 1987 model btw.
So an 1987 model would be an Mark II. That means it wouldn't have the Catalina Smile issue but could have the mast compression post block and wire harness issues. Those are two things to look at along with the general condition of the boat.

Remember that there will always be air-chair or dock-queen sailors telling you a boat can't do something or that something is wrong with a particular model. Ultimately it is up to you to decide what your boat and, more importantly, you are capable of doing. Generally the boats are far more capable than the sailors and if the sailor is that capable the condition of the boat is more important than the make and model of the boat.

Good luck and fair winds,

Jesse
__________________
http://svsmitty.wordpress.com/
JK n Smitty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2013, 09:41   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 1,440
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

Quote:
Originally Posted by JK n Smitty View Post
Remember that there will always be air-chair or dock-queen sailors telling you a boat can't do something or that something is wrong with a particular model. Ultimately it is up to you to decide what your boat and, more importantly, you are capable of doing. Generally the boats are far more capable than the sailors and if the sailor is that capable the condition of the boat is more important than the make and model of the boat.

Good luck and fair winds,

Jesse
Great answer!

I've noticed a trend that most people who trash a particular boat haven't owned that boat. Likewise for people who praise particular boats. The fact is that many are just repeating what they've heard others say, or maybe they judged it after they looked one over for 20 minutes.

The minimum criteria for weighing in on these discussions should be owning one for a few years.
__________________
letsgetsailing3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2013, 15:56   #12
Senior Cruiser
 
SkiprJohn's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2006
Location: Kea'au, Big Island, Hawaii
Boat: Cascade, Sloop, 42 - "Casual"
Posts: 14,192
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

Quote:
Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
Great answer!

I've noticed a trend that most people who trash a particular boat haven't owned that boat. Likewise for people who praise particular boats. The fact is that many are just repeating what they've heard others say, or maybe they judged it after they looked one over for 20 minutes.

The minimum criteria for weighing in on these discussions should be owning one for a few years.
Or at least been aboard and sailed one.

kind regards,
__________________
John
SkiprJohn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2013, 16:15   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 1,440
Re: Catalina 30 (the real story)

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiprJohn View Post
Or at least been aboard and sailed one.

kind regards,
No, that would be the criteria for answering a question about going on board and sailing one.

If someone is asking about owning one, I think I'd stick to prior owners.
__________________
letsgetsailing3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 01:37   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Vancouver, BC
Boat: Alberg 30
Posts: 344
Quote:
Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post

No, that would be the criteria for answering a question about going on board and sailing one.

If someone is asking about owning one, I think I'd stick to prior owners.
I don't own one, but I live on one, does that qualify me?
I'll say it's not a favorite... the layout and space looks good, but it's actually fairly uncomfortable, and the build quality in many areas I find lacking.
__________________
jgbrown is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 02:47   #15
Registered User
 
JK n Smitty's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Hingham, MA
Boat: Catalina 310
Posts: 637
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgbrown View Post

I don't own one, but I live on one, does that qualify me?
I'll say it's not a favorite... the layout and space looks good, but it's actually fairly uncomfortable, and the build quality in many areas I find lacking.
Could you please elaborate?
__________________

__________________
http://svsmitty.wordpress.com/
JK n Smitty is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
catalina

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 15:41.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.