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Old 18-10-2015, 05:39   #1096
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

Having owned a 33 foot bavaria, I can say that for the vast majority of cruisrs it is a good boat. Lots of features and good comfort - certainly for coastal cruising it is hard to beat and the pricing is right. For use as aa blue water boat it might need beefing up, but let's face it, most are day sailors and most sail coastal
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Old 18-10-2015, 06:40   #1097
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

A few years a go the Frenchman Olivier Poncin decided to launch a new brand. Het build a new state of the art factory, and had a series of yachts designed.
His aim was to build good value yachts by optimizing the whole production process as much as possible. For example, the interior was modularized, and all yachts for example had the same galley, the same head etc.. He also used new ideas, like using aluminium profiles to slot furniture panels together.
The result was the "Harmony" brand.
The sailing press was generally quite impressed. The boats sailed well, the construction was good and the sailing hardware was well spec'ed. A good value for money boat.
But unfortunately 2008 happend, and Harmony ceased trading.
But not before Poncin had prepared another brand: Locwind. Of these only a handfull Locwind 16M were build. A pity, as those looked like a perfect live-aboard cruiser board.

And have a look at the Varianta: Use the hull moulds a a discontinued Hanse model, build a boat with good sailing hardware, so that it sails well, but just put the minimum in interior confort in. Just asume that your customers well want to sail first, and then fit in more comfort later. Not a wrong asumption to make...
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Old 18-10-2015, 07:49   #1098
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

Yes being a good yacht builder, offering good quality at a fair price usually will not work these days unless you catch the market place just right.
Beneteau and all the similar builders understand that they are really not in the yacht building business, they are in the "fashion business". Their buyers do very little due diligence when buying and rely on the feelings they got when they walked through the boat at the boat show and other advertising and video presentations on the internet. Most of their buyers could never explain exactly how the boats are built and how one method of attaching a rudder was better than another.
Open spaces and site lines as well as features like hidden TV screens are considered Wow factors and are designed to attract attention and get a strong positive emotional response.
Our hearts do the buying, our brains kick in later and question the hearts decision but the formula for generating large numbers of sales is all about emotion and that is the reason we see features like built in retractable TV's and construction details like chines on cruising boats. It gives us something to get excited about and we all like the little buzz, its what keeps the whole consumerism thing going.
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Old 18-10-2015, 09:17   #1099
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Originally Posted by K_V_B View Post
A few years a go the Frenchman Olivier Poncin decided to launch a new brand. Het build a new state of the art factory, and had a series of yachts designed.
His aim was to build good value yachts by optimizing the whole production process as much as possible. For example, the interior was modularized, and all yachts for example had the same galley, the same head etc.. He also used new ideas, like using aluminium profiles to slot furniture panels together.
The result was the "Harmony" brand.
The sailing press was generally quite impressed. The boats sailed well, the construction was good and the sailing hardware was well spec'ed. A good value for money boat.
But unfortunately 2008 happend, and Harmony ceased trading.
But not before Poncin had prepared another brand: Locwind. Of these only a handfull Locwind 16M were build. A pity, as those looked like a perfect live-aboard cruiser board.

And have a look at the Varianta: Use the hull moulds a a discontinued Hanse model, build a boat with good sailing hardware, so that it sails well, but just put the minimum in interior confort in. Just asume that your customers well want to sail first, and then fit in more comfort later. Not a wrong asumption to make...
The Varianta 37 does not only sails well as it sails better than the others in their class, due to being lighter, having a very good hull an updated keel and rudder. You have to go to more expensive cruiser racers to sail faster (for the size) on a mass production boat. A great buy for the ones that put sailing first, have little money and do not mind to live in a true Ikea interior that can always be bettered with time as well as the boat equipment. Never understood why Varianta is not a big sales success, or maybe I do and that just means that sailors real want a better interior as a priority instead of sailing potential. ;-)

Poncin was not just a French, he leaded Dufour yachts by almost two decades before creating Harmony yachts. But before Harmony he created a high quality yacht called Poncin. Very interesting boat made in two sizes 42? and 37? that disappeared mysteriously in one or two years. Then the Harmony project was then born, a completely different project that was aimed to compete on the market for the more affordable boats, at the time the Cyclades from Beneteau and Bavarias.

The boats had a very basic interior but what really killed them was the fame that they had problems that come from the first boats that had injection fiberglass problems and because the design of the boats was from the beginning a bit outdated (Mortain and Mavrikios designed).

Both things put together and they were just not competitive with Bavaria and started to lose money and went down.

On the used market they come cheap and if it is not one of the first ones it can be a great buy for the price. If one can live or even like the interior I don't think they were bad boats.

I remember an interesting discussion on a French Forum and a post from an ex ingenieur from the shipyard that pointed out what I am saying.

https://www.hisse-et-oh.com/forums/f...#reply_1115737

The first Poncin, not the Harmony were very different boats, what Poncin thought was the ideal cruiser, not a cheap boat. Very few were made and their used price (if you can find one) is low for the quality. I was interested in one, maybe 10 years ago but it turned out that the boat had been repaired due to a not completely watertight deck hull junction and that and a Broker I did not like ended the business. The boat was in England.
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Old 18-10-2015, 09:42   #1100
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Yes being a good yacht builder, offering good quality at a fair price usually will not work these days unless you catch the market place just right.
Beneteau and all the similar builders understand that they are really not in the yacht building business, they are in the "fashion business". Their buyers do very little due diligence when buying and rely on the feelings they got when they walked through the boat at the boat show and other advertising and video presentations on the internet. Most of their buyers could never explain exactly how the boats are built and how one method of attaching a rudder was better than another.
....
I agree that the interior of a cruising boat is today an important factor, maybe the more important (with price) in what regards main sailing mass market cruising boats but that has nothing wrong. The boat interior is an important part of a sailing boat anyway and it has not to do with fashion but to enjoy to live there for considerable periods of time.

However they buy the boat by the interior because they know that it sails about the same way as most main mass produced boats, that they sail safely (RCD) and know also that the surviving brands of mass produced boats have very few problems in what regards the type of sailing they want to do.

They know also that they will need little boat maintenance on the first 6 or 7 years and they don't intend to keep it for more than that. Many, I would say most, have already sailed similar boats on the charter business and know what they are buying.

But that is only valid on the main market of mass production boats, certainly not true for the ones that look for performance cruisers or voyage boats and in lesser measure the ones that buy luxury boats like Halberg Rassy.
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Old 18-10-2015, 09:52   #1101
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

We have some views in common however I disagree that a buyer of a new boat can expect very little maintenance for the first 5 or 6 years. I'm reading other threads of buyers who bought new boats from these builders and some of them read like a really bad dream. Months of chasing the builder or rep trying to get all the things done that were not properly completed at the factory. Many of these stories have a common theme so I think a buyer had better be aware that many of these boats are not being turned over in a proper way. Suggestions from some buyers include hiring a surveyor to check the boat over before taking title.
Having said that, yes one would expect that few major problems would be expected in the first 5 or 6 years.
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Old 18-10-2015, 10:05   #1102
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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We have some views in common however I disagree that a buyer of a new boat can expect very little maintenance for the first 5 or 6 years. I'm reading other threads of buyers who bought new boats from these builders and some of them read like a really bad dream. Months of chasing the builder or rep trying to get all the things done that were not properly completed at the factory. Many of these stories have a common theme so I think a buyer had better be aware that many of these boats are not being turned over in a proper way. Suggestions from some buyers include hiring a surveyor to check the boat over before taking title.
Having said that, yes one would expect that few major problems would be expected in the first 5 or 6 years.
I certainly had now problem with my new Bavaria till I sold it with after 8 years. That was in 2010 and the new owner has no problems either (we remained friends).

On internet you would find mostly the ones that have problems, a few in thousands of boats. When you have dedicated threads about a boat or a brand you have lots of people saying that they own them and don't have problems.

I agree that many of those problems has to do with a final montage of the boat that is made by the dealer. It is never enough to say that having the boat mounted by a good dealer is fundamental not also for that but regarding any modification one wants to make on the boat that a good dealer will not have any problem in doing while a a poor one will probably damage the boat with the modification. I live in Portugal and bought my Bavaria in Palma de Maiorca and you can guess why.
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Old 18-10-2015, 10:11   #1103
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

I find out finally that Poncin I was talking about. It is not an Harmony and not a 42 but a 44 ft boat, a J&J design (and a 38, not 37). I believe this is still the same boat I was interested in some years ago. I believe one can get it for less than the asking price. A great design but that had some problems that probably can be solved and the boat seems already to be at a nice price.

Poncin - 44 Sailboat vendre en United Kingdom | Boatshop24





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Old 18-10-2015, 11:02   #1104
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

Working on a fairly new Bav 42 now. It's built like a tissue box. Incredibly flimsy interior construction. Has wiring issues which cannot be resolved because most of the wiring was run before they installed the hull liner over it. Most of the wiring is completely inaccessible. It's a ridiculously poor imitation of a boat. Rule of thumb for interior construction: I must be able to fall on it or grab it while falling without it breaking. Very very little of this interior meets that rule. Super flimsy faux wood fiberglass parts everywhere. I will post some pics of construction scantlings for the edification of those who haven't been on one of these boats.
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Old 18-10-2015, 11:28   #1105
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Working on a fairly new Bav 42 now. ....
Surely you know the year of the boat. It would be more informative if you referred the model by its year of built.
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Old 18-10-2015, 12:14   #1106
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Surely you know the year of the boat. It would be more informative if you referred the model by its year of built.
Does the year it was built make any difference??
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Old 18-10-2015, 12:24   #1107
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Hey Stu,
I may be wrong but I was told it was a family business and the families were connected.
That aside my point was that I am very skeptical about all the so called savings that large boat builders pass on to their buyers because they buy in volume.

The biggest competitor any company has is the cheaper product you built and sold 2 years ago so you play the game of always changing your product so if the customer wants it he can't buy it in the used market. Thats what succesful manufacturing companies do if they want to remain in business. That keeps you out there buying the latest I phone or the latest Honda or the latest Beneteau...its how the game is played.
Thanks for the clarification.

Interestingly enough, Catalina is one of the few production builders who do NOT do that.

They designed and built some very successful boats that had among the longest production builds known in the industry. Boats like the C22 (over 12,000 !!! of the original model), C30 (over 6,000 before they introduced the C309 and now the C315, essentially the same boats with improved systems), my C34 (1,801 from 1986 to 2007; followed by the C355, same size & layout with improved systems) and the C36 (2,000 /- hulls, early 80s to 2006). During this period they also produced the highly successful but smaller C25s & C27s.

In terms of volume, for their coastal cruiser sized boats, from 1986 to 1989 a thousand C34s were built and sold, while at the same time the C30 and C36 maintained very healthy production runs, too. Much of the detailing was identical or very, very similar for these three yachts: engines, water systems, mufflers, sinks, light fixtures, deck hardware, etc.

Smart design was the key. Instead of different models of the same size, brand loyalty, because of the quality of the product, had skippers moving up in size with the same builder.

They did exactly the opposite of your suggestion, which, BTW, Hunter did follow.

Catalina's business model was to do a good boat, obtain feedback from owners and active owners associations, make improvements and keep the same boats in production. They did it for many, many years without advertising!!!

An example of quality is ACCESS. I noted the post earlier where the poster said Bavarias' access to wiring was poor. I can reach EVERYTHING on my boat. EVERYTHING. We had a charter Beneteau 35, two actually over the years, that required me to rip the entire aft cabin apart of get to the oil dipstick. Holy Cow! On my boat, I don't even have to expose the engine under the companionway stairs, I just open a little door and check it easily. I tell folks who are looking at new or used boats to do the oil dipstick check. If they can't, then no one else will has has in the past either.

I'm not arguing with you, just presenting some facts. I agree, too, that there are a number of ways different vendors produce different things that are pretty much the same to the average Joe who knows nothing about boats, i.e., "Hey, Honey, look at all those boats out there, don't they all look alike?"
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Old 18-10-2015, 13:31   #1108
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Thanks for the clarification.

Interestingly enough, Catalina is one of the few production builders who do NOT do that.

They designed and built some very successful boats that had among the longest production builds known in the industry. Boats like the C22 (over 12,000 !!! of the original model), C30 (over 6,000 before they introduced the C309 and now the C315, essentially the same boats with improved systems), my C34 (1,801 from 1986 to 2007; followed by the C355, same size & layout with improved systems) and the C36 (2,000 /- hulls, early 80s to 2006). During this period they also produced the highly successful but smaller C25s & C27s.

In terms of volume, for their coastal cruiser sized boats, from 1986 to 1989 a thousand C34s were built and sold, while at the same time the C30 and C36 maintained very healthy production runs, too. Much of the detailing was identical or very, very similar for these three yachts: engines, water systems, mufflers, sinks, light fixtures, deck hardware, etc.

Smart design was the key. Instead of different models of the same size, brand loyalty, because of the quality of the product, had skippers moving up in size with the same builder.

They did exactly the opposite of your suggestion, which, BTW, Hunter did follow.

Catalina's business model was to do a good boat, obtain feedback from owners and active owners associations, make improvements and keep the same boats in production. They did it for many, many years without advertising!!!

An example of quality is ACCESS. I noted the post earlier where the poster said Bavarias' access to wiring was poor. I can reach EVERYTHING on my boat. EVERYTHING. We had a charter Beneteau 35, two actually over the years, that required me to rip the entire aft cabin apart of get to the oil dipstick. Holy Cow! On my boat, I don't even have to expose the engine under the companionway stairs, I just open a little door and check it easily. I tell folks who are looking at new or used boats to do the oil dipstick check. If they can't, then no one else will has has in the past either.

I'm not arguing with you, just presenting some facts. I agree, too, that there are a number of ways different vendors produce different things that are pretty much the same to the average Joe who knows nothing about boats, i.e., "Hey, Honey, look at all those boats out there, don't they all look alike?"



Ever seen anything like Catalina Direct for a European boat?
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Old 18-10-2015, 13:43   #1109
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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Ever seen anything like Catalina Direct for a European boat?
No, I haven't. But I'm not sure if there was a reason for your question.

CD, for those who may not know, sell a lot of parts for older Catalinas, even if you can still get them from the factory. Having a builder that's still in buiness really helps, but so does having an alternate source.

For those who don't know, CD started off in Sacramento, California as a distributor of Catalina 22 parts and grew to encompass the entire line of Catalina stuff. Catalina Direct: has their history on one of their pages.

While I have used the factory for parts (and my last exhaust riser in 2003), the factory was originally in Woodland Hills, southern CA, now moved to Florida, I recently purchased an exhaust riser and insulation from CD.

Without any hassle it was here the next day. It was for a 1986 boat. It fit perfectly. They know their stuff.
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Old 18-10-2015, 14:49   #1110
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Re: Production Boats Fit For Blue Water

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No, I haven't. But I'm not sure if there was a reason for your question.

CD, for those who may not know, sell a lot of parts for older Catalinas, even if you can still get them from the factory. Having a builder that's still in buiness really helps, but so does having an alternate source.

For those who don't know, CD started off in Sacramento, California as a distributor of Catalina 22 parts and grew to encompass the entire line of Catalina stuff. Catalina Direct: has their history on one of their pages.

While I have used the factory for parts (and my last exhaust riser in 2003), the factory was originally in Woodland Hills, southern CA, now moved to Florida, I recently purchased an exhaust riser and insulation from CD.

Without any hassle it was here the next day. It was for a 1986 boat. It fit perfectly. They know their stuff.


Yes. And they have downloadable how-to PDF's for almost every part they sell. You can strip out and totally rebuild most models of Catalina using almost nothing but their website.


Euro boat I'm currently working on has all manuals and schematics in German. Dealer says he might be able to get me an English manual at some point. No online info or support from builder. My German is slowly getting better. Stuff like "bilgenpumpen" is obvious. The schematics are where it all falls apart...
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