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Old 03-11-2014, 16:25   #136
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

G'Day Sully,

Ann hit a lot of the worry points in elderly Taiwan (and other oriental source) yachts. I'll add a few that I have personally seen:

Wiring that defies description, with practices that would not do in your shed, let alone at sea. Includes use of fabric insulated wire, "wire nut" joins, open knife switches in bilge areas (where fumes can collect, awaiting sparks), unsealed nav light fixtures, and so on.

Plumbing of a similar nature, with gate valves often used on through hull openings, poor quality hoses, inaccessible locations for through hulls etc.

Steering systems that were knock-offs of Edson or Yacht Specialties designs, but of very poor quality and materials.

Teak veneers that eventually peel off (Cheoy Lee was famous for this) or get sanded through.

Sailing hardware, such as winches and blocks that were knock offs of Barient or Merriman designs, again of very poor quality.

Use of non-marine grade plywood in many places.

What tricks many newbie buyers is that these faults are often overshadowed by the sometimes beautiful joinery and attractive lines of many of these boats. Further, they are all pretty old by now. Many of the problems that I and others have mentioned may have surfaced and then been "fixed" by previous owners. Some, of course, have done good jobs and improved the situation, but all too often such attempts are pretty mickey mouse and only add to the problems down the line a few years.

Many of us have mentioned "due diligence"... all too easy to say, not so easy to accomplish on your own. We also suggest a good survey of a prospect, but the costs of that can add up swiftly and thus it is tempting to gloss over the step. Do so at your peril!

Finally, the above caveats are appropriate for older boats of ANY origin, not just Oriental yards. There will be fewer obvious knock-off hardware issues on domestic designs, but the shabby practices crop up in many places, so be aware.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 03-11-2014, 17:01   #137
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

Thanks for the informative post. I'm generally not interested in boats with a ton of team anyway, so generally give the Taiwan boats a pass.

Are these issues similar with the tayanas and babas and the like?


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Old 03-11-2014, 18:03   #138
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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Originally Posted by sully75 View Post
Thanks for the informative post. I'm generally not interested in boats with a ton of team anyway, so generally give the Taiwan boats a pass.

Are these issues similar with the tayanas and babas and the like?


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No, the Taiwan boat major issues are mostly from the very old ones. As noted above, those used a lot of plywood for decks and cabins with fiberglass over. A good formula for rot... even with good plywood.
The US boats be lumped into two major groups.. light built racing/cruising designs that never were good enough for offshore even when new, and substantial designs like the Westsail, Cape Dory, Alberg(?) , Pacific Seacraft, Valiant etc.
The Taiwan boats seemed to improve over time. Some American manufacturers didn't seem to want to learn from their mistakes. The better Taiwan yards started doing things like isolating the deck coring in small squares. I don't know if any US builders ever tried to improve their flawed deck designs. Many highly touted builders (C&C, J boats etc) Have horrendous core issue history...including the hulls.
No one seems to have resolved rudder issues, Taiwan or US. Some Taiwan boats are great (Ta Shing), some are marginal... depending on model. Ditto for the US boats I guess... Problem is there are so many poorly built boats on the market, it's hard to find the good ones... but they are there... from wherever.
JMHO of course!
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Old 03-11-2014, 22:22   #139
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

Sully,

I just thought of something else that might help you: there's a CF thread called something like "Surveyor 101". You might have a look at that.

A.
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Old 03-11-2014, 23:57   #140
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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If I were looking for a solid boat in the 30-35 foot range for less than 30k, I would look for a Miura 31 or a Wauquiez Centurion 32. I have seen decent examples for 15k-20k. While they are small compared to a modern 32 footer, they both have more space then a Triton. I sailed on a Miura in 35 knots and she was very well behaved. The Miura I sailed on came to the US via the Cape to Rio race, with a very green crew. Then made it over with no issue.
Nebe Boat Builders built the Miura. Great builders. I almost bought a Nebe Cape 28 last year, but the seller seemed commitment phobic.

Out of interest, I just googled that model, and the SAME boat I was interested in last year is on again on ebay. Last year he was asking $18,000 and now is down to $10,000. The boat is in Miami, and certainly it is worth a look. It has a rebuilt Volvo Penta in it. It may be a great buy for someone; I know it is not for the OP.

When comparing theoretical specs on boats, I find this tool quite good.

Rate Your Boat-gosail.com

If your doing any offshore, take particular look at the capsize ratio. The comfort ratio is another aspect you may want to consider, all other things being equal.

My boat, a Lippincott 30, compares well to the Miura. However, like the Nebe Cape 28, only about 100 were built. A good one will cost you $17-20,000. I am 6'4" tall, and I have enough headroom in the salon and galley not to be strained. Lots of room in the V-berth.
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Old 04-11-2014, 07:17   #141
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

I know it might be a little on the large side, and some may weigh in on its "blue water" abilities but I've been liking the Morgan 382,383,384's more and more. There are a few around in your price range too. Definitely worth a look.

On a side note I have a friend with a Bayfield 32 for sale. Freshwater boat in Muskegon MI. Have a look on craigslist. I think he is asking $34k, a professionally complete rebuild on a Yamar 3cyl, new cylinders, cams, pistons, valves, crank, ect. The transmission had new internals as well. Newer cushions and autopilot. It's worth a look!
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Old 04-11-2014, 08:21   #142
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

Fantasia 35 fits your bill. It might be tough to find one under $30k, but I got mine for under $30k- and in good shape, so it's possible. Right size- 35 ft. Fantastic live aboard, I lived aboard year round on Lake Onatrio with my wife and son. she has two good sized staterooms plus a workshop. Big fridge and deep freeze. By no means a fast boat, but that is mostly made up for by ridiculous tankage, 1000 litres of fresh water and 500 litres of diesel, so she can motor most non-trans oceanic passages at 6.5 knots, which in my opinion makes up for her less than speedy sailing characteristics, especially on the southern great lakes where winds tend to be very light during the summer months. Over 12 or so knots of wind though, the boats are fast enough and incredibly comfortable in a seaway. They are definitely built like tanks and I don't mean APC tough- I mean full on tank tough, 24000 lbs at only 35 feet. I regularly take mine sailing on Lake Ontario in the months of April, May, October, November in over 20 knots of wind with a baby on board, and the only stress I feel comes from docking the less than turny boat in those winds, but I get the job done.
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Old 04-11-2014, 15:09   #143
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

I don't think anyone has mentioned the Tartan 34C. I believe it is just about a go-anywhere boa,t if prepared properly. It is what I have settled on to buy when I am ready to go (for now I plan to ready myself on a Tartan 27).

Lots of used T34Cs on the market, the vast majority are below $30K; I know of 3 available in freshwater (Ohio and Michigan) that are less than $20K.

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Old 05-11-2014, 04:01   #144
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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I don't think anyone has mentioned the Tartan 34C. I believe it is just about a go-anywhere boa,t if prepared properly. It is what I have settled on to buy when I am ready to go (for now I plan to ready myself on a Tartan 27).

Lots of used T34Cs on the market, the vast majority are below $30K; I know of 3 available in freshwater (Ohio and Michigan) that are less than $20K.

rick
from the OP's 3rd paragraph...

Some contenders would be Alberg 35s which would be very cheap, but I'm thinking about getting away from CCA boats with their overhangs and limited space. Tartan 34s look super cheap but I'm not a big fan of centerboards.
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Old 05-11-2014, 04:38   #145
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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from the OP's 3rd paragraph...

Some contenders would be Alberg 35s which would be very cheap, but I'm thinking about getting away from CCA boats with their overhangs and limited space. Tartan 34s look super cheap but I'm not a big fan of centerboards.
Are you having issues with your CB on the bristol? i think keel/cb is a great design if you're on the east coast where depth matters.


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Old 05-11-2014, 05:02   #146
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

The Pearson 35 is a great boat. For what it's worth, in the shorter blue water passages I've taken in one, it's probably the most comfortable and solid boat I've been on offshore. As for the large cockpit and small drains, I've never read or heard any reports of anyone having an actual problem with that. And those boats have been sailing around for a long, long time. My guess is you could buy one in tip top shape in your price range. Highly recommend.
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Old 05-11-2014, 05:10   #147
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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I don't think anyone has mentioned the Tartan 34C. I believe it is just about a go-anywhere boa,t if prepared properly. It is what I have settled on to buy when I am ready to go (for now I plan to ready myself on a Tartan 27).

Lots of used T34Cs on the market, the vast majority are below $30K; I know of 3 available in freshwater (Ohio and Michigan) that are less than $20K.

rick

Yeah I would tend to shy away from centerboards in general as just another thing to fail but if you all want to talk them up I'll listen. I think I read something about the t34 centerboard having some fundamental problems?


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Old 05-11-2014, 05:31   #148
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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The Triton is super well mannered I think in almost every way. That's the only way it's sort of failed. Also because I'm using an outboard, it can be an issue in a chop. Partly because I don't have the mount totally sorted out and could do with a longer shaft outboard. It's actually done respectably well.

But good windward performance is a pretty big deal I think.

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I'm always looking for sailboats between 30'-35' also but since my boat is paid for ($2,000 wasn't that hard to save up) I always hesitate before I buy the perfect boat that I find.

My boat and yours is already on the Mahina Offshore Sailboat List as a good boat with rather low capsize factor.

As for slow and fast, we are talking monohulls here. Not a lot of difference especially is you aren't in a hurry. Same with upwind performance.

As for the outboard, I have an adjustable Panther Bracket with a 14" swing and a 5HP 4 Stroke Mercury Outboard with a 25" shaft. It has brought me back across the 17-18 miles of the lower Chesapeake many times without a problem. If it's really rough and windy, I sail it back down which can be an adventure especially if the wind is heavy. But once the Bristol is setup properly, she handles it.

The strongest wind I've dealt with so far on the Bristol 27 in the bay was 30 mph on June 14th.

Your boat is longer and heavier I think so it probably would have handled that wind a bit better.
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Old 05-11-2014, 06:44   #149
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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Are you having issues with your CB on the bristol? i think keel/cb is a great design if you're on the east coast where depth matters.


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Shallow draft is an advantage in a lot of places.

No problems, except... broke the bastard almost going on lee shore beach in a whoop-ass thunderstorm, see SAIL magazine Feb 2014 for write up. Deep keel boat would have been wrecked, I was inside the swim zone markers, 500 feet from shore. Made a new one for $800 or so, rebuild article tentatively accepted for publication in Good Old Boat magazine at some point. I had replaced by SS pennant with Dyneema which is better and more mechanically sound than Nicopress/thimble, easy to "freshen the nip" by retying the knot to the board, even with the boat afloat, and cheaply and easily replaced when needed.
In short, I love my CB. Goes well to windward, less drag downwind, little maintenance required, I expect it will be useful to help trim the helm on long passages or adjust resistance if hove to.
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Old 05-11-2014, 07:04   #150
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Re: Best buy in a solid cruising boat (go anywhere, $30k or less)

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Anne--good post.

The reason I can't/won't be more specific is there isn't room, here, to cover all the problems one might find in this genre. The other is that my Downeast 38 experience occurred nearly 40 years ago. And I don't want to exclude important issues that a dedicated surveyor will likely find.

Even when Taiwan boatyards utilized the services of qualified naval architects, the yards still cheated heavily. To save money, because their resources were insufficient, and because they simply didn't know any better. Remember, many of these boat builders were simple farmers. So their boats, especially the early ones, were just guaranteed to contain numerous problems, some serious.

So do your own due diligence.

Thanks for the replies regarding the Downeaster. It definitely looks like all Down East yachts were made in California, unless there is something I don't know about the company or I'm being naive in some way about where sailboats are 'officially' made versus their parts or something.

I would always do my due diligence, and I think this is part of it! If there is something shady about the company or different standards of production under the same brand, I definitely want to hear it. As far as I can tell this is not the case.

One issue I'm coming up with in general while searching is that I generally go cruising with a group of 4 or 5 friends, so space and the number of berths is important to me. That plus the price tag is what makes the DE 32 appealing, as long as it is unquestionably safe offshore and performs at least ok. My Pearson 26 has become something of a clown car and is definitely not capable of going safely where I want to take it.

Keep us posted on your progress, Sully!
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