To wrap up this thread, I appreciate all of the input from everyone and the various twists and turns this has taken in discussing the various Beneteaus, including the mid 80's Firsts and the more modern Oceanis
cruising boats. I very seriously was considering a Beneteau
. The problem was (and still is), which one? I looked at several, old and new, First and Beneteau/Oceanis. In my search, I realized that while I wanted the mid 80's 38' or 40' First, my wife wanted more cruising and comfort accomodations. That lead to looking at a lot of boats, including the newer Beneteau, C&C
, and even Catalina
. At this point, I can probably tell you about most 34'-38' boat made in the last 20 years!
It just so happens that we found a boat that meets our expectations and seems to us to be perfect boat. In fact, this is the first boat that my wife and I felt would work. So, without much debate, we made an offer on a Tartan 3500. From what I've learned, this boat is a great all-around boat that sails
very well in all conditions. The Tartan 3500 is on mahina's list of offshore
boats, often quoted on this forum. Tankage is a little on the small size, but there's plenty of free space under the stbd settee and aft lazarettes for additional tanks
. Quality and construction seem solid and first rate. At 35', the boat feels like the right size for the two of us and shouldn't break the bank for slip fees
. I believe she'll allow us to venture further offshore..... After that, we'll see the wind
takes us. Thanks again for all your help - this has been a very informative process.