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Old 30-05-2016, 19:33   #646
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Re: Beneteau 38

Personally I think Beneteau really nailed it on this boat. It obviously has a strong appeal to a wide variety of sailors. The open plan seems to be a real hit with many buyers as well. I think Polux has a pretty good understanding of this design. It's a cruising boat, it's not a racer. It's too heavy and short on sail to even be a cruiser racer. Looking at it I would think light airs would be provide less than stellar performance, that aside, it's a cool design and I think most folks will really enjoy owning one of these.
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Old 31-05-2016, 12:46   #647
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by UPSPEED View Post
Dear Gents and Ladies,

1. Engine: has anyone opted for the Yanmar 21HP instead of the 29HP? If yes, then what kind of average speeds are you reaching at both cruise and max RPMs? Any difficulty in fighting stronger than normal currents and winds?
I don't know of any O38s delivered with a Yanmar 21HP (I wan't aware that it was a factory option). That said, the 29 is barely able to get the boat to hull speed at wide-open-throttle, and the boat can sail faster than it can motor. I would say that the 29 is the correct motor for this hull.

Quote:
2. Other than the need to haul out for oil change any issues with the SD20? Has anyone installed the SD25 and how does it perform?
There are two that I'm aware of: A linkage pin inside the sail drive can be installed incorrectly and fall into the gear box, causing failure. We've had one or two owners with this issue.

Corrosion is a big issue with the aluminum housing and you must stay on top of zincs. I think this is going to loom larger over time as these boats go off to their second and third owners who will do progressively less under-hull maintenance, resulting in corrosion that will open up the large thru-hull hole where the saildrive sits. I expect in 20 years we'll be hearing about sinkings of saildrive boats on mooring balls pretty regularly. I'm not a fan of this aspect of the design, but it does make the boat a lot cheaper.

All new production should be coming with SD25s, and if they aren't, I'd contact the factory and have the boat built with it.

Quote:
3. Any significant performance/handling issues with the shallow keel and it's heavier ballast?
This is a question for FdM--he has the shallow keel version. I don't know that anyone has been able to directly compare them. Whatever performance issue their may be is slight, as FdM's performance numbers look exactly like everyone else's I've seen.

Quote:
4. Any overall major issues (hull or components) which have been addressed by the manufacturer these last 2 years and which have possibly been incorporated/changed for newly built hulls?
Other than the mentioned SD20 issues, we've seen no problems. There's a block in the halyard rigging that takes some side load and should be upgraded--two or three breaks there amongst owners on the facebook page. Otherwise it's been pretty fantastic in terms of initial build quality. I have the first hull sold (#003) and have seen no failures or breakage in the first two years.

Matt
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Old 31-05-2016, 12:57   #648
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Re: Beneteau 38

Quote:
Originally Posted by Polux View Post
When the boat come to the market there was some expectations that Beneteau would make also a performance cruiser based on the 38. I had a friend very interested and I knew that there was some potential clients.

It turned out that Beneteau was not interested and probably for good reason: the 38 would have become a very expensive boat. My friend worked with a dealer to see about the possibility of having one modified and the price went way ahead of the cost of a Dehler 38, that had already all those "modifications."

The Oceanis 38 to be really interesting as a performance boat would have to have a bigger B/D ratio (better performance upwind and on a beam reach) but that would have implied the reinforcement of all boat structure and as that one is monolithic, probably a new one.Too much hassle to very few of those boats eventually sold (at a considerably superior cost).

A pity since the hull deserved that.
A Newport CA based O38 just won it's class in the Newport to Ensenada race both on elapsed and adjusted time, by a fair margin. And this particular boat (SUN DAZE) is not customized for race.

It's a cruiser, not a racer, but it's a really fast cruiser.

Light air downwind performance without a spinnaker is sub-par because of the wide aft and drag from three tracks in the water. Getting as much weight forward to the bow as possible helps considerably as it lifts the stern. A good spinnaker takes care of this as it autmatically pulls the boat forward and gets the stern up, reducing wetted surface.

Very light air on a beam reach (little to no heel) is also a performance killer. The boat needs to be heeled 15 degrees+ in order to reach its performance potential, and winds too light to do that are going to be problematic. This is where you pay for the wide beam and two rudders. Up on her chine, she's extremely fast.

Performance while pinching or berber-hauled is excellent, quite a bit better than other cruisers its seems. We've been able to squeak by in San Diego Bay to save a tack and put us on a better track for bay races when others couldn't. The boat is also easy to barber-haul with the spinnaker tackle of the mid-ship cleats.

The aft mast does make her prone to rounding up--keep a proper reef on the mainsail to completely avoid that problem. The dual rudder also helps a lot, as you can just overpower the wind to get the boat back to its track. I strongly recommend the roller furling main on this boat, because it gets most of its power from the headsail, the loss to RF main is not that big of an issue and it lets you keep the boat balanced perfectly to avoid round-ups even in very heavy winds. The sailors in San Francisco can speak more to that.

Very light air is a problem, as Polux predicted, especially with the RF main. Otherwise, she gets a lot done with what she's got and is never embarrassing in those impromptu races back to the marina at the end of the day--often leaving 45' class boats in her wake.
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Old 31-05-2016, 13:28   #649
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Re: Beneteau 38

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstrebe View Post
....

Corrosion is a big issue with the aluminum housing and you must stay on top of zincs. I think this is going to loom larger over time as these boats go off to their second and third owners who will do progressively less under-hull maintenance, resulting in corrosion that will open up the large thru-hull hole where the saildrive sits. I expect in 20 years we'll be hearing about sinkings of saildrive boats on mooring balls pretty regularly. I'm not a fan of this aspect of the design, but it does make the boat a lot cheaper.
....
Matt
I did not understood what you are talking about corrosion? You are talking about the saildrive? That is not a specific part of that boat and there are many 20 year old boats on the water with saildrive.

As you know, for insurance purposes the seal should be changed each 7 years but even regarding that I have heard of boats that have maintained it for more than the double of that time without problems.

Regarding the saildrive itself (metal part) a good maintenance is needed and it is good to know that there are proper two component epoxy paints to be applied over it and different type of antifouling (if it is not painted over).

If well maintained I don't see why it would not last a lot longer than 20 years.

Normal antifouling over the alloy casing (without being painted) can lead to corrosion problems.
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Old 31-05-2016, 14:23   #650
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Re: Beneteau 38

As far as the engine HP usually the larger engine is always the correct answer. I know a person with a 411 with a 49hp engine. She told me here options were a 43 or 49. She told me she was happy with the 49hp option.

Seems that even the larger 29hp engine is on the weak side.

I have a brochure from 2 years ago. It shows only one engine at 30hp.

Sent from my SM-G360V using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 31-05-2016, 22:36   #651
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
As far as the engine HP usually the larger engine is always the correct answer. I know a person with a 411 with a 49hp engine. She told me here options were a 43 or 49. She told me she was happy with the 49hp option.

Seems that even the larger 29hp engine is on the weak side.

I have a brochure from 2 years ago. It shows only one engine at 30hp.

Sent from my SM-G360V using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
Thanks for the inputs Tuffr2 and mstrebe!

My dealer in Holland is indeed offering two options, the 21HP and 29HP Yanmars and I've seen other dealers around Europe doing the same now for the O38.

It's my feeling that nowadays manufacturers have a tendency to oversize engine options for sailboats. Of course I'm not saying that the 29HP is too big of an engine for the O38 and it's LWL and displacement.

My only concern is about having the proper sized power plant for my boat. As far as I know and aside from having regular servicing and using high quality fuel, the next best thing we can do to keep our diesel engines happy (and healthy) is to run them hard! By hard I mean at higher power settings regularly (not thrashing it at max RPM 24/7 of course).

I understand that running the engine regularly at low power settings is a killer for diesels as this will cause the cylinder walls to glaze up and rings not to seal properly with time. Matt did mention that the boat won't reach hull speed when driving pedal to the metal (hull speed of around 8kts for the O38's 35'2" LWL), so this might be a good indication of proper sizing (or even undersizing).

Some recommendations I've read and heard are that the proper engine power should be able to get you a speed-to-length ratio of no more than 1.1 at 75% RPM. For the O38's LWL this would equal about 6kts when running the engine at 75%.

Am I totally off on this? Not trying to convince myself on buying a smaller engine, but just trying to confirm that the bigger is actually better in this case. There's also a 2.800 euros price difference between both, which could be directed elsewhere (like the inflatable pool...just kidding )

Matt...RPM numbers are you reaching when going full throttle? Do you have fixed blades or folding?

Thanks,

Ricardo.
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Old 31-05-2016, 22:54   #652
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Re: Beneteau 38

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstrebe View Post
I don't know of any O38s delivered with a Yanmar 21HP (I wan't aware that it was a factory option). That said, the 29 is barely able to get the boat to hull speed at wide-open-throttle, and the boat can sail faster than it can motor. I would say that the 29 is the correct motor for this hull.



There are two that I'm aware of: A linkage pin inside the sail drive can be installed incorrectly and fall into the gear box, causing failure. We've had one or two owners with this issue.

Corrosion is a big issue with the aluminum housing and you must stay on top of zincs. I think this is going to loom larger over time as these boats go off to their second and third owners who will do progressively less under-hull maintenance, resulting in corrosion that will open up the large thru-hull hole where the saildrive sits. I expect in 20 years we'll be hearing about sinkings of saildrive boats on mooring balls pretty regularly. I'm not a fan of this aspect of the design, but it does make the boat a lot cheaper.

All new production should be coming with SD25s, and if they aren't, I'd contact the factory and have the boat built with it.



This is a question for FdM--he has the shallow keel version. I don't know that anyone has been able to directly compare them. Whatever performance issue their may be is slight, as FdM's performance numbers look exactly like everyone else's I've seen.



Other than the mentioned SD20 issues, we've seen no problems. There's a block in the halyard rigging that takes some side load and should be upgraded--two or three breaks there amongst owners on the facebook page. Otherwise it's been pretty fantastic in terms of initial build quality. I have the first hull sold (#003) and have seen no failures or breakage in the first two years.

Matt
First hull sold wow! So that makes you the older O38 owner out there! Your opinions and suggestions mean a lot as your level of knowledge about the boat is certainly high!

Pity I hadn't realized this when chartering from San Diego not too long ago! Would have loved to take a look at your vessel!

Thanks for the tips about the SD25...I've already contacted the dealer about that option.

The shallow keel option is all about our plan to cruise up the French canals from the Med all the way to the North Sea at some point, so having 1.64m (5.5') under us would definitely be a plus as anything deeper than 1.8m (5.6') is a big no-no for that kind of cruising. The dealer here in Holland did say that the boat has indeed less sailing qualities upwind and that handling in heavy weather is also "less good" in his own words, and he is recommending the deep keel (which is the standard and does not cost anything extra).

I'd be interested and would highly appreciate it to read from someone with the shallow keel option.

A few more questions:

- Anyone with a full battened main?
- Anyone here who has ordered the releasable inner forestay option and would care to comment?
- Is the helm seat necessarily at all in your opinion? I myself like seating on the side as it gives me a better view forward anyway and it seems to me that not having the seats would give me better access to the cockpit bottom lockers...any insights?

Cheers!

Ricardo.
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Old 01-06-2016, 18:43   #653
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Re: Beneteau 38

Upspeed, Congratulations. My 2 cents on some of your questions…hope they help:

Engine: Like others I am always for getting the bigger engine…especially if you live or plan on sailing in an area with strong tidal currents and/or winds (I would have ordered an even more powerful motor if they offered it). We have currents in excess of 5 knots near the Golden Gate and extremely strong winds such that I’ve seen boats at full throttle standing still in the busy shipping lane under the bridge while FdM easily makes headway (she has the 30hp Yanmar). Also, I’d recommend getting the folding prop…it is worth it both in terms of speed and the fact that you are much less likely to foul/catch something).
Saildrive: The newer SD units are made of a more noble metal than those originally installed in the older boats which means that they are less prone to galvanic corrosion…it might be worth asking if your SD will contain the ‘better’ metal. Lastly, as I’ve suggested elsewhere, it might be worthwhile asking the dealer to inspect the shifter pin to ensure that it was properly flared out when it was installed…a small thing that can prevent a potential big headache.
Keel: FdM has the deep draft 6.9’ keel so can’t comment on the shallow draft version.
Heater: Since you live in cooler latitudes, I would highly recommend getting the factory installed heater as it works extremely well and has vents placed in all the areas of the boat. These allow for air circulation and prevent mold from forming.
Other: Some things I never thought I’d use but now I love are the power winches, the self-tacker track, the separate shower/wet locker, the additional water tanks, the AIS, the radar (we have fog at times), all the B&G electronic stuff including the Autopilot, the extra coach roof winch, in mast furling, deluxe cockpit table, and bow thruster. ... also, if they are an option and not standard, get the aft folding cockpit seats...you can fit more folks on the boat + they are more comfortable to sit on for long periods of time when the boat is sailing flat.
Wood: The newer darker mahogany wood looks beautiful, but I would caution getting it (as I would also caution getting the white cushions). We’ve bareboat chartered many boats (including Beneteau’s) with the darker ‘mahogany’ wood and it is very hard to keep clean as it really shows dirt/oil/smudges. If you are inclined to be a clean freak (like my wife is), the darker wood might drive you crazy.

BTW: The attached video was taken this week in 30 knot SF Bay winds with fully reefed sails…note how straight the boat steers…the hard chine and twin rudders help the boat track like it is on rails. We were making 8.5 knots without even trying (We have the 3 cabin + 1 head Cruiser Version with an oversized Ronca attached to the bow of the boat with 200’ of heavy chain and had full fuel and twin fresh water tanks). Said differently, even loaded down the boat is a hoot to sail! Enjoy yours.
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Old 10-06-2016, 09:30   #654
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Re: Beneteau 38

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fluer de Mer View Post
Upspeed, Congratulations. My 2 cents on some of your questions…hope they help:

Engine: Like others I am always for getting the bigger engine…especially if you live or plan on sailing in an area with strong tidal currents and/or winds (I would have ordered an even more powerful motor if they offered it). We have currents in excess of 5 knots near the Golden Gate and extremely strong winds such that I’ve seen boats at full throttle standing still in the busy shipping lane under the bridge while FdM easily makes headway (she has the 30hp Yanmar). Also, I’d recommend getting the folding prop…it is worth it both in terms of speed and the fact that you are much less likely to foul/catch something).
Saildrive: The newer SD units are made of a more noble metal than those originally installed in the older boats which means that they are less prone to galvanic corrosion…it might be worth asking if your SD will contain the ‘better’ metal. Lastly, as I’ve suggested elsewhere, it might be worthwhile asking the dealer to inspect the shifter pin to ensure that it was properly flared out when it was installed…a small thing that can prevent a potential big headache.
Keel: FdM has the deep draft 6.9’ keel so can’t comment on the shallow draft version.
Heater: Since you live in cooler latitudes, I would highly recommend getting the factory installed heater as it works extremely well and has vents placed in all the areas of the boat. These allow for air circulation and prevent mold from forming.
Other: Some things I never thought I’d use but now I love are the power winches, the self-tacker track, the separate shower/wet locker, the additional water tanks, the AIS, the radar (we have fog at times), all the B&G electronic stuff including the Autopilot, the extra coach roof winch, in mast furling, deluxe cockpit table, and bow thruster. ... also, if they are an option and not standard, get the aft folding cockpit seats...you can fit more folks on the boat + they are more comfortable to sit on for long periods of time when the boat is sailing flat.
Wood: The newer darker mahogany wood looks beautiful, but I would caution getting it (as I would also caution getting the white cushions). We’ve bareboat chartered many boats (including Beneteau’s) with the darker ‘mahogany’ wood and it is very hard to keep clean as it really shows dirt/oil/smudges. If you are inclined to be a clean freak (like my wife is), the darker wood might drive you crazy.

BTW: The attached video was taken this week in 30 knot SF Bay winds with fully reefed sails…note how straight the boat steers…the hard chine and twin rudders help the boat track like it is on rails. We were making 8.5 knots without even trying (We have the 3 cabin + 1 head Cruiser Version with an oversized Ronca attached to the bow of the boat with 200’ of heavy chain and had full fuel and twin fresh water tanks). Said differently, even loaded down the boat is a hoot to sail! Enjoy yours.
Wow! She's flying! Looks very stable and balanced and it's beautiful to watch!

Thank you so much for all the great insights and suggestions! The O38 is indeed a lovely boat, but after serious consideration and a fair amount of researching, my Beneteau dealer made me an offer on the new 41.1 2017 model I could not refuse and I've placed an order for delivery late 2016/early 2017.

I had been looking at both options in parallel and the 41.1 makes more sense for me currently. I wouldn't dare to say which one is a better boat, as both are sound vessels and very well built to Beneteau's highest standards, but each one serves a purpose and the 41.1 is the one the better fits me needs and plans.

Thank you all for the great advices and if any of one you is ever around Holland, I'll gladly take you out for a spin!

Cheers!
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Old 10-06-2016, 10:24   #655
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Re: Beneteau 38

Congratulations on your new boat. I think you will be very happy with the 41.1. I know I am very happy with my 41.
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Old 10-06-2016, 23:19   #656
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Re: Beneteau 38

Upspeed, Congratulations! The 41.1 is a beautiful boat. I happened to be at the boatyard when one was being commissioned for the below BoatTest.com review and I really liked it. The interior is beautiful and, like the 38, the cockpit is expansive. I especially liked the german mainsheet system and the additional windows that make the aft cabins so light. Fair winds to you and let us know how you like her when she arrives.

Beneteau Oceanis 41.1 (2016-) 2016 Reviews,performance,compare,price,warranty, specs,Reports,Specifications Layout, video | BoatTEST.com
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Old 25-06-2016, 06:40   #657
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by Twidget View Post
Congratulations on your new boat. I think you will be very happy with the 41.1. I know I am very happy with my 41.
Thanks!

Is yours a 41.1 and do you have a bow thruster installed? I'm curious about the boat's maneuverability when docking stern first into tight slips without the aid of the thruster.

Cheers!
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Old 25-06-2016, 06:44   #658
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Re: Beneteau 38

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Originally Posted by Fluer de Mer View Post
Upspeed, Congratulations! The 41.1 is a beautiful boat. I happened to be at the boatyard when one was being commissioned for the below BoatTest.com review and I really liked it. The interior is beautiful and, like the 38, the cockpit is expansive. I especially liked the german mainsheet system and the additional windows that make the aft cabins so light. Fair winds to you and let us know how you like her when she arrives.

Beneteau Oceanis 41.1 (2016-) 2016 Reviews,performance,compare,price,warranty, specs,Reports,Specifications Layout, video | BoatTEST.com
Thank you! Both the interior spaces and cockpit areas are very well designed and extremely spacious indeed. Definitely a vessel for live aboard on longer trips.

I'll be sure to let you know as soon as the boat is commissioned which should be around mid-november as Beneteau France apparently has a 5-6 month backlog for the 41.1
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Old 06-11-2016, 15:22   #659
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Re: Beneteau 38

My wife and I are starting the search for a new boat and my wife really likes this new Bene. I realize all the compromises with the interior but for our plans of staying mostly in the southeast/FL and islands I think this may be perfect. However I am concerned on the water storage. It really only has a 34 gallon water tank with an option for 53?
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Old 06-11-2016, 15:54   #660
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Re: Beneteau 38

You are correct, it only has a standard 34 gallon tank and an optional 2nd 53 gallon tank....which has ben more than adequate for coastal cruising and/or using the boat as our 2nd home...but might not cut it on long ocean trips without modifications. My wife and i take navy showers and so we easily get up to 10 showers out of the 2 tanks + drinking and cooking (the hot water tank is adjacent to the shower so we don't waste any 'warm up water). We are very much enjoying the boat. You might want to join the Beneteau Oceanis 38, 35 group on facebook as some have boats down your way and do extensive blue water and coastal sailing ... so you could tap into them. Good luck and fair winds.
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