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Old 24-07-2016, 15:58   #1
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Beneteau First 42 offshore?

We have just about nailed down a deal on a Beneteau First 42. Does anyone have experience with this boat offshore or with extended cruising experience in one? We were wondering what modifications you may have made and what positives or negatives you have uncovered over time. I have read that sailing DDW creates a lot of roll. IOR style hull so that makes sense. Any thoughts on a transom platform/ ladder upgrade for dinghy access?
Thanks
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Old 24-07-2016, 18:54   #2
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

I crossed the atlantic on one of these going from Cabo Verde to Trinidad. Yes it rolls going dead downwind but it is hardly alone in that. Flying a spinnaker (symmetric old fashioned) helped with that but I would imagine dual headsails would do even better. A parasailor might be good also. The owner had built a swim platform on the transom and it also had a hydrovane wind vane which I think is the greatest device ever. All in all a good boat for a long passage.
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Old 25-07-2016, 07:40   #3
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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Originally Posted by Lunita View Post
We have just about nailed down a deal on a Beneteau First 42. Does anyone have experience with this boat offshore or with extended cruising experience in one? We were wondering what modifications you may have made and what positives or negatives you have uncovered over time. I have read that sailing DDW creates a lot of roll. IOR style hull so that makes sense. Any thoughts on a transom platform/ ladder upgrade for dinghy access?
Thanks
We sail a 1986 Beneteau First 42. She was originally delivered in France and sailed home to Virginia after a two week shakedown in Europe. At sea she is a very comfortable, sturdy and safe boat. For another opinion on long distance cruising on the yacht see Travels with Ocean Angel.

FWIW...
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Old 25-07-2016, 22:15   #4
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

These boats were the boats that gave Beneteau the reputation they now enjoy. Stick built, tough as hell, go anywhere ocean racers. The 38, 4O, 42 and 456 all were reasonably fast and were built for offshore racing. They sail well and hold their value, if its one that has been kept well, you have a winner, congratulations.
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Old 25-07-2016, 22:47   #5
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

Here's a blog of friends of ours with lots of cruising experience on a B First 42s7

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Old 28-07-2016, 07:41   #6
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

love love love the First 42, and the First 435. badass bene's
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Old 28-07-2016, 11:18   #7
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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Here's a blog of friends of ours with lots of cruising experience on a B First 42s7

oops, missed the link
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Old 08-09-2016, 21:15   #8
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

Thanks for the input. We just delivered her home, Portland Oregon to Victoria, B.C.. Mostly motoring or motor sailing. One eight hour sail, broad reach at 8 to 8 1/2 knots, big smiles.
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Old 08-09-2016, 22:25   #9
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

8 to 8.5 knots, very nice
I would be interested in knowing how the Firsts compare to Oceanices. My old 430 has a cast iron keel, did any of the Firsts have a lead keel option?
Furthermore, I gather the Firsts are faster, would that be due to lighter weights, taller masts, and deeper keels?
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Old 09-09-2016, 05:42   #10
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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Originally Posted by ErikFinn View Post
8 to 8.5 knots, very nice
I would be interested in knowing how the Firsts compare to Oceanices. My old 430 has a cast iron keel, did any of the Firsts have a lead keel option?
Furthermore, I gather the Firsts are faster, would that be due to lighter weights, taller masts, and deeper keels?
Erik--

The First Series yachts, from 81-89, before the S variants, did have a lead keel option but it was quite costly and really unnecessary and, thus far, we haven't seen any of the boats with the option. Between the Oceanis series and the First series--designed by Germain Frers--the hulls are completely different in terms of shape, weight et al. The Firsts were designed as racing yachts with cruising amenities and designed for competition in the Fastnet. One of the first of the First's, Lady Be Good, won the Cowes-Dinard her first week out of the gate. Our First 42, HyLyte, weighs in at about 22,000 fully fueled and watered and provisioned for cruising--including the incredible amount of "stuff" my (much) better half insists she needs for a two/three week cruise. The boats are very fast. We routinely run at 8+ knots in 15 knts of wind on a reach. Friends of ours raced their boat, Ocean Angel, to Isla in the SPYC Regatta del Sol al Sol race a few years ago and routinely reported 14-15 knots under spinnaker (albeit with a full racing crew). We've done 10+ reaching with our asymmetric but at 1500 sq. ft its a big sail for just the two of us to keep track of so we usually save it for making knots in lighter air.

FWIW...
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Old 09-09-2016, 05:49   #11
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

As a oceanis 430 owner i am also interested in knowing what the differences are between these boats, mainly construction wise. The firsts of this era have a good reputation but you don't read much about the Oceanis line. Is the build different, less strong, other factory, does the first also have a liner like the Oceanis etc ?
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Old 09-09-2016, 08:31   #12
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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As a oceanis 430 owner i am also interested in knowing what the differences are between these boats, mainly construction wise. The firsts of this era have a good reputation but you don't read much about the Oceanis line. Is the build different, less strong, other factory, does the first also have a liner like the Oceanis etc ?
If you take a look at Sailboatdata.com for the First 42 and the Oceanis 430 you'll see that the shape of the hulls is quite different. The max beam of the Oceanis is amid-ships, at the salon while the max beam on the First 42 is quite further aft, at the galley area. You'll also note that the stern of the Oceanis is quite a bit wider than that of the First 42, the listed displacement (dry weight/light ship) is less and the rated sail area is less. Although I don't have any data to support it, I suspect the hull layup's were somewhat different which would account, to some extent, for the displacement difference. Of course, the boats were designed for entirely different purposes, the Oceanis for cruising and charter service and the First for ocean racing. The build methodology for the boats (and essentially all Beneteau boats) is essentially the same, a partial hull liner/grid system (up to about 2 feet above the bilge) epoxied in place while the hull cures were still "green" to ensure a chemical as well as adhesive bond between the two. The liners were/are "slotted" to accept and ensure the alignment of the bulkheads which were/are fastened in place both mechanically and with adhesives. On the First the bulkheads are tabbed to the hulls above the liners which I would wager is also the case for the Oceanis. On the Firsts, the bulkheads are 16 and/or 18 mm solid marine plywood faced with Teak and trimmed with milled Mahogany at edges and penetrations. I suspect that is also the case with the Oceanis but some lighter cored material might also have been used in non-structural areas given the boat's intended use.

The biggest difference I have found between the two boats, of the same era, is that the Oceanis seems to heel more easily and, having watched friends on an Oceanis during a cruise in company to Key West, seem to roll mercilessly in a beam sea while the First just rises and falls with the sea without the roll. And, unless we dialed back on our trim, we quickly out-distanced them.

Despite the foregoing, I think the similar era Oceanis series boats quite sturdy, seaworthy, boats when used as intended.

FWIW...
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Old 09-09-2016, 12:58   #13
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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oops, missed the link
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Small world. Tor and Judy of Tivoli are members of our Club in San Francisco, Richmond YC. It's good to see them doing so well and having such a great time...
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Old 09-09-2016, 17:47   #14
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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Originally Posted by ErikFinn View Post
8 to 8.5 knots, very nice
I would be interested in knowing how the Firsts compare to Oceanices. My old 430 has a cast iron keel, did any of the Firsts have a lead keel option?
Furthermore, I gather the Firsts are faster, would that be due to lighter weights, taller masts, and deeper keels?
For the boats built after 1990, generally speaking, the First series has better rigging hardware. The traveler, masts and boom from my First 36.7 were more robust than the non-first boats. The winches were larger to handle the increased loads, my wheel was larger with rack and pinion vs. cable. All of the First boats that I have seen on Yachtworld have lead bulbs or keels and rod rigging. Don't know about the hull, but the interiors seem to be of the same quality.
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Old 10-09-2016, 21:04   #15
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Re: Beneteau First 42 offshore?

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Erik--

The First Series yachts, from 81-89, before the S variants, did have a lead keel option but it was quite costly and really unnecessary and, thus far, we haven't seen any of the boats with the option.
I used to race on a First 42 in Chicago in the early-mid 90's when we had a one design fleet there. There were 8 regular models racing there at that point. There was also a 9th First 42 in the area at the time that actually had a lead keel, but that's the only First of the era I've ever seen with one. I think it had been factory fitted.

One of the First 42s from there wound up at our yacht club here in San Diego years later and sold for next to nothing during the downturn in 2009. The boat was in solid shape and made someone a great offshore cruiser.
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