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Old 25-09-2014, 18:38   #1
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32' vs 36'?

All,

If you had to do it over again would you buy a bigger 36' older boat or a smaller 32' newer boat? I have a chance to get this one right & we'll buy either a Catalina or a Hunter next spring. I have a fiancée who will be on board with me and while I learned in small day sailors in the nineties she has not learned to sail yet.

My concern is this: is 36' too big to be our first real boat? I had a Catalina 25' a few years ago and was chicken to take it out alone but since she doesn't sail we will take a few ASA classes together so we'll feel more comfortable on the boat.

Other info: We want to do the Great Loop and Texas coastal sailing. We're in WINDY Corpus Christi. I think we will want a swim platform and wing keel. Other than that we'll sea. Just thinking out loud...

Thanks,
Jim
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Old 25-09-2014, 18:58   #2
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

How old you are and any physical challenges you have will be important factors. If I were a young man and finances allowed I'd go with the larger boat in anticipation of filling it up with children.
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Old 30-09-2014, 20:18   #3
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

In many ways a larger boat can be easier to sail as it is generally more forgiving and will likely have a more comfortable motion. Provided all your gear is the right size like the sheet winches and anchor windless than a bigger boat shouldn't be a problem. Docking will be more difficult however she is unlikely to have to dock it without help in which case it also shouldn't be a problem. I'd go the 36 ft.
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Old 30-09-2014, 20:29   #4
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Go with the 36, especially if you are looking at hunters.


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Old 30-09-2014, 20:37   #5
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimm22n View Post
All,



My concern is this: is 36' too big to be our first real boat? I had a Catalina 25' a few years ago and was chicken to take it out alone but since she doesn't sail we will take a few ASA classes together so we'll feel more comfortable on the boat.

Thanks,
Jim
I'd suggest you take her out sailing first before making these big plans. Sailing isn't for everyone, especially woman. Rent a 25+' sailboat and go out all day and see how she likes it and then let her decide. Because this sounds like one of those "goingna bite you in the butt situations". Prioritize! If she don't like it, whatcha gonna do? After you're married, things change!
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Old 30-09-2014, 20:54   #6
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Get the Hunter 36. It is easy to sail, but equip it with an autopilot and good electronics. If you want to do the loop, put on a generator and a full enclosure. My Hunter 356 has all that and my wife and I have spent nearly 900 days on it since buying it new in 2003. That includes a trip to Florida and back from Kentucky Lake last fall, winter and spring, a total of 2,800 miles.

We started with a Hunter 260 in 1998. It was harder to sail, too small for the amenities we wanted, and didn't have air conditioning and heat. Great little boat, but not a boat you would live on.


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Old 30-09-2014, 21:02   #7
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

I owned a 32.5 Benny in charter but also often ended up in a 36 with trade time.

Honestly, I didn't see a big difference. Both had a similar layout. To me paying more for a longer boat, that may be harder to sail, especially solo sail wouldn't make sense, (or older boat of the same price).

I agree, it pays to spend time on both and decide what's best for you. For some the extra breathing room is worth making sacrifices for. To me it wouldn't be, but that's very individual.
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Old 30-09-2014, 22:23   #8
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

You don't know enough yet to make a decision. I agree with delmarrey that the woman in question should have an opportunity to see whether she thinks it is fun before deciding on what size boat. Bear in mind that all your costs increase with size, and so do the forces involved.

Someone above mentioned "the right size winches." Winches may have to be upgraded to be useful to the least strong crew member. It is important to do this, because doing *stuff* like sail trim, and changes, and so on is part of the fun of sailing, although more important to some than others.

Generally speaking, the woman will not like it if you take her out and get her soaking wet and terrified, and then expect her to cook and tidy for you. I'm not being a smartass here, but issuing a serious warning. Some guys don't think to make it fun for her, and fun is what'll bring her back again and again. Know thy partner!

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Old 01-10-2014, 14:41   #9
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Most of my experience has been on smaller boats: Catalina 22, tanzer 22. Last July we (my never been sailing wife) and I bought an Alberg 35.

I wAs surprised at how much I have had to learn. A blown docking on a 22 means you put out a leg and fend off; try that on this and you'll get hurt. I am just really getting to where I feel comfortable going in and out of our slip.

The same is true of sailing. Winches on the 22 were nice; on this they are necessary. All the forces are just bigger. So I'm learning.

Also, I'm used to an outboard; this has a yanmar 3gm30 diesel. Big learning curve.

So would I do it again? YES! All sailing is learning. Having a ball with it.

About teaching a wife: done it 3 times. NEVER YELL. Don't hit her with all the terms and knots; focus on one thing and let her master that. Praise goes a long way. You do the scut work; let her do something fun. My wife says: "get her a how to sail guide so she can learn the language. DO NOT YELL." There you go.


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Old 01-10-2014, 18:26   #10
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

We want to do the great loop, one thing I will caution you on is the keel, winged keels point like crazy and sail fast. When they run aground in muck they get really stuck in a wierd way, we go free once by everyone going to the bow while in reverse, seems odd but it lifted the wings and broke the suction. Loopers tell me that draft really does matter and they touch often. We bought a Pearson 35 1968 with a rebuilt engine.

We are going with a standup vented air conditioner, a larger refrigerator and bigger tanks. If you outfit a bigger boat for two and not how many bunks for friends she will be happy and the experience much better!

Good luck and do it soon! Were cheering for you guys!
Jim
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Old 01-10-2014, 22:00   #11
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Go with the best quality and best maintained. For a couple either boat will be good.
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:40   #12
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Hi there,

IMO, you should go look at each boat you're considering and then decide which offers the better quality. In a given price range, ALWAYS choose the better build quality boat, so long as it is not prohibitively expensive to bring it up to the quality you need for what you want to do.

Just my two cents.

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Old 02-10-2014, 08:12   #13
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Personally I don't think there's much difference between 32' and 36' in terms of handling but...

there could be a big difference in the costs of repairs, refits, sails, etc. for an "older" 36 vs. the "newer" 32. You might want to cost some of those things out before you buy. You could find the newer 32 is cheaper to own than the 36 after you do that. Might not change your purchase decision but something to be considered.
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Old 02-10-2014, 08:35   #14
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

I'd say 36' is not too big, my first sailboat is a 38'. There is a big difference in interior space between say a Hunter 36 and a 38, or an IP 35 and 38. I can only imagine the difference in interior space, tankage and storage space between a 32 and a 36 is really big.
Let your wife pick the boat. Let your first experiences on the boat be more about her than you, let her re-decorate it. If she likes to go out to eat make sure whenever your on the boat that going out to eat is part of the trip. Do not go out in weather that will make her miserable, let her make decisions about the boat, listen to her opinion.
Buy her flowers, comment about how much more attractive she is in swim wear and relaxed when she is on the boat. Be the guy that's not in a hurry, is calm and nice when your on the boat, when she tears something up, laugh about it.
But for Gods sake, never raise your voice or scold when your on the boat, bite you tongue and turn away if you have to, but if you sour her on it, she will never forget it, and will hate that "Damn boat".
I'm not saying lie to her, but you are trying to sell her on something that maybe she doesn't want, do not ever tell her something like you deserve this, you have worked hard for this.
If your better at it than I am, you can even make her think the boat was her idea, I have seen that.
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Old 03-10-2014, 13:45   #15
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Re: 32' vs 36'?

Go for the 36, or twofootitis will sneak up on you.


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