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Old 08-01-2007, 16:25   #16
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Ahhh... so reading between the lines, my feeling that Mr Lucky wasn't taking the Beneteau into the Roaring 40's was correct. This boat will do you just fine for any coastal cruising you throw at it. In fact, it's way up there on the list of boats for your intended purposes, since it can take a bit more than you are intending it to take. I would see no problem crusing from coast to coast (via the Panama Canal) with a boat of this type. It will work just fine.

The reason I am not fond of the boats is just a matter of taste, nothing more. There is nothing wrong with them. In fact, I'm almost surprised Acoustic above mentioned them in the same breath as the Hunter/Catalina group. In my mind, Beneteaus and Jenneaus are leaps and bounds above the other two. Again... this is in *my mind* based on heresay, conjecture and knowing people who have owned all of the above. Also, I have been aboard all of the above. The hardware and other items used with the bare hull are just leaps and bounds higher quality on a Benetau vs a Hunter.

If you are talking strictly Beneteaus and Jenneaus though, I am not sure. They are both capable cruisers and both would be more than adequate for your intended cruising plans. You might be able to resell the Beneteau a little faster, as they are extremely popular, if that is a consideration. Best of luck, and have a surveyor involved.
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Old 08-01-2007, 17:26   #17
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Beneteaus

Many of the older boats , built when materials and labour were much cheaper and they didn't trust the material, are much better boats at a fraction the cost. Spencers Albergs, Islanders, Frazers, etc are all much better boats at a tiny fraction the cost of a Beneteau. You could repalace engine , sails etc and still be far ahead financially with amuch better seaboat.
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Old 08-01-2007, 17:43   #18
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I couldn't agree with Louis Riel more. I own a 1987 Gufstar Hirsh. It's absolutely bulletproof. I hit a dock a little hard the first time out with her by misjudging thrust. Had to pay for the damages to the dock, not the boat.
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Old 08-01-2007, 18:23   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Louis Riel
The British maritime safety board stated that Beneteaus are unfit for offshore cruising in any rough water. When you buy a Beneteau you are buying style over substance. You are paying for the name, not what goes into the boat.
You've seen all those glossy ads. Wanna pay for them?
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A mate of mine who has designed 100 ft mega yacht's down to pram dinghy's once said of this style of craft that the interior designer would come into the yacht designers office and say, "look at this fantastic interior design, now can you draw a hull around this by lunchtime".

Just like most 4x4's on the road today, you wouldn't really use them as one, but geez they look purdy.

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Old 08-01-2007, 18:34   #20
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Right, but you all need to keep in mind his intended use:

"Lake Ontario, and I would plan to sail her in those waters, including trips to Canada from the US. Planned use would be coastal crusing, with occasional lake crossings."

A paddleboat would suit his needs. Kidding, of course, but certainly Beneteaus are more than adequate for lake boating. I've been through the lakes on my present boat. The hardest stuff you encounter in mid summer is a thunderstorm or very shallow approaches to docks. The latter was the worst thing I experienced, except the anxiety of hitting a "net stake", which are marked all over the charts, but few people knew about. Again, kind of joking, since the waves do get steep and choppy, but it certainly isn't offshore work.

(Disclaimer: I know that the weather kicks up very bad in the Fall/Winter and there are many wrecks in the lakes)

I have seen many Beneteaus cruising the Caribbean. Nobody seemed to have any issues with them.
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Old 08-01-2007, 20:11   #21
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Didn't actually mean to post this line,

"The British maritime safety board stated that Beneteaus are unfit for offshore cruising in any rough water"

But do agree with this one.

If your plans are like 98% of other owners, it's probably as good as any other comparable choice out there. (What a great marketing slogan: "Our boat is no worse than the other guy's...")

Maybe it should be

"Our boat is no worse than the other guy's, it just cost's a whole lot more"


Again, just the opinion of one...............Maybe.

Dave
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Old 09-01-2007, 03:39   #22
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Obviously, the best heavy weather tactic is avoidance.
Although cruising in coastal & semi-protected waters (Great Lakes, Caribbean, etc) doesn’t guarantee benign sailing conditions, it does offer the benefit of proximity.
The coastal cruiser has access to weather forecasts that extend beyond the duration of any planned journey, potentially reducing the likelihood of encountering extreme circumstances - which the offshore voyager is almost certain to encounter.
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Old 09-01-2007, 06:57   #23
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Mr. Lucky, the Sun Odyssey would be fine for your intended use. It has modest deck hardware, anchor handling gear and other 'light' construction features and limited tankage, but none of those should be major factors for you.

Just keep in mind that the reason these high-volume builders got to be high-volume is because what they build is consistent with how most boats are used and - for cost reasons - no more. I say this not because of any inherent prejudice; I've coached folks to buy Catalinas in the past because it was the right boat for their intended use.

One last sea story, which I'll offer to Acoustic since he's delivered some of these boats. A Dane recently told me about delivering a Beneteau to the Caribbean from the Med; the charter company/owner was moving its home base. On leaving the Canaries, they first had to divert to the Cape Verdes because the deck and spar hardware kept failing; simply too light for 24/7 ocean loads. After installing heavier gear and when on passage to St. Lucia - about half way across - the Dane thought he was starting to suffer from small spatial illusions. He cooked breakfast each morning and, each day, something seemed incrementally more 'odd' when he worked in the galley. It wasn't until 4 or 5 days later he realized that it wasn't him, it was the entire galley module was slowly being sprung from the hull while the the boat was being racked and torqued in the seaway. I could offer a very similar story from a Catalina 34 owner who sails out of Oahu, where 'local sailing' and 'island cruising' is done in big water - bulkhead separations, hull-deck joint sprung, etc. These incidents don't prove such boats are 'bad'; they prove these boats are not built for those conditions. Not a problem for occasional lake sailing; not an endorsement for serious blue water sailing.

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Old 09-01-2007, 09:20   #24
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As an owner of a 1986 Beneteau First 42, I was very interested in Mr. Riel's assertion concerning the (de)rating of Beneteau Boats by the alledged "British Maritime Safety Board", as it runs so counter to our own reasearch prior to buying what will prove to be our last boat. Accordingly, I have just spent rather a great deal of time trying to locate said "Board" and its "findings" only to discover that none seems to exist, at least so far as Google, Yahoo and a host of other search engines is concerned. I do, however, find several nearly verbatum assertions to his, going back for some time, on other forums debating various yachts, none apparently supportable. I also note that the majority of the Beneteau yachts are rated Catagory A for "all oceans". Whether a particular sized yacht is suitable to that, however, seems to be more a function of the owner than the yacht as the yachts can take far more punishment than the owners can endure as evidenced by the number of perfectly sea-worthy, albeit slightly damaged, yachts abandoned in recent years when owners decided they'd "...had enough". Given the record of Beneteaus, I suggest the yacht is probably quite capable. The yachts cannot, however, entirely make up for short comings and lack of experience of their owners. s/v HyLyte
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Old 09-01-2007, 10:12   #25
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British Maritime Safety Board
Whilst I would not claim to be an expert on these things, just cos' I live in this neck of the woods.............

a) I have never heard of this organisation

b) I have never heard of a report along these lines from any major UK "safety" related organisations in respect of any major boatbuilder........and I am 110% sure I would have


Having said that, I would have certain reservations about going accross an Ocean or making serious passages in something like a "Modern AWB" (No names ) - but as this is NOT based on personal experiance it could be called an unfounded Prejudice ...........but I base my view on the fact that before Chartering became a market to build for no designer came up with the idea of a Triangle shaped boat, 2 stories high in order to fit 15 berths, 2 heads, showers and a kitchen onboard.

Doesn't mean that the boats are "bad", in fact they may be fundamentally far superior in design to anything that existed in the pleasure boat market during the previous 100 years (note build quality is a seperate matter, of course they are built down to a price (as well as achieving efficiancies from high production volumes) - this does equal having "designed out corners").

Weekend and holiday sailing in for many happy years? IMO probably nothing better! but for 24/7/365 x XYZ year???? mmmmmmmmmm?????
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Old 09-01-2007, 11:17   #26
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The RCD and the Category rating system seem to have been developed for three primary reasons: it was the means by which the wide variety of manufacturing processes that then existed in the various European countries could be placed on some kind of common footing as the EU version of the Common Market arrived, it is inherently consistent with the European mindset that all things need regulation (don't underestimate this reality...), and certainly at least as important, to serve as a trade barrier on competition from foreign builders (note e.g. Item 20 at CE-Marking: Does my product need CE Marking? - a website operated by one of the bountiful # of consultants who feed off the need to understand and comply with all those Brussels policies). To make more of the RCD & rating system than the above is probably an exaggeration.

As a good indicator of how reasonable it is to accept the Category rating system at face value, note the definition of Category A: boats suitable for F8 *and over*, seas exceeding 4m/13' *and over*. A bureaucrat may find that a handy way to itemize Mother Nature's various capabilities but any seaman will laugh at this open-ended description.

For those of you with these AWBs who are pleased with your decision, good for you. You chose wisely and deserve your rewards. But let's not forget horses for courses...

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Old 09-01-2007, 17:33   #27
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First 44.7 Four Stars Wins in the Newport Bermuda Race

http://www.beneteauusa.com/wps/wcm/c...NEWS_FOURSTARS

Let me see: Beneteau builds First.......Bermuda is "offshore"..........Question ensues If Beneteaus are not built for offshore and the CE rating is just so much hoey, how did this boat win its division? How can one get to Bermuda without going offshore?
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Old 09-01-2007, 18:00   #28
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Hmmmm , The article telling us how good Beneteau is put out by Beneteau.

You don't think they'd put out a bad one do you.

Seriously, I don't believe they are a bad boat as such, probably no worse or better than a lot of expensive brand name boat's, but I do believe that there are better boat's on the market for less dollars.

But then i'm not a fancy interior kind of guy,

BB
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Old 11-01-2007, 15:27   #29
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Beneteau

I have a set of stability curves for a Contessa 31 showing positive stability to almost 180 degrees . For the newer Beneteau type designs they brag about positive stability to only 120 degrees after which it capsizes and stays that way.They consider that a safe sea boat???
The older designs are almost invariably far more self righting than the newer Style over substance, trendy boats , designed for the gullible.
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Old 11-01-2007, 17:39   #30
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Brent, could you post those curves? The math never lies. I'd be very interested in seeing them, as well as any others you might have kicking around. I don't suppose it's ever been done on a Gulfstar Hirsh, right? (there is so little data on this boat)
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