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Old 20-10-2015, 13:12   #1
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Boat Help

New to bigger boats. Looked at a 6 or so boats this weekend. Looking 30-36 ft range for the wife and I. Mainly weekend use for now with longer trips later. 2 boats we liked Person 34 and oday 31. Any pros and cons from those with more boat knowledge? Likes dislikes. etc
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Old 20-10-2015, 14:21   #2
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Re: Boat Help

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New to bigger boats. Looked at a 6 or so boats this weekend. Looking 30-36 ft range for the wife and I. Mainly weekend use for now with longer trips later. 2 boats we liked Person 34 and oday 31. Any pros and cons from those with more boat knowledge? Likes dislikes. etc
For coastal cruising both are probably ok. How were the engines? Pearsons generally have a good reputation. They made 2 34s, do you know which one you were looking at? The 34 or the 34-2?

To give you our advice on boats it helps a lot to know your cruising plans, preferences in boats, level of experience, list of "must haves" in a boat, what kind of budget you have and things like that.

Good luck!
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Old 20-10-2015, 15:04   #3
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Re: Boat Help

The oday has a brand new universal 18hp diesel. Pearson has a 20hp universal not sure of hrs. Not sure which Pearson it is year is 84. Budget around 30K. I am new to sailing (1 year on lakes and bays)and will using it on weekends with an occasional 5-7 day sail. Still early in the process
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Old 20-10-2015, 15:15   #4
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Re: Boat Help

Hi Coveyrise.

In older boats it is probably more important to check the condition of the boat than the original quality. Even a great boat if old and very neglected can be a real dog.

That being said, it is certainly better to start off with a better built boat and Pearsons are pretty good as are the O'Days, Tartans, Cal, Catalina and many more.

Any older boat I would look first at the really expensive items to repair. One that isn't always obvious are wet decks. Most boats are built with a sandwhich of fiberglass with plywood, balsa mat or foam core between the layers of glass. When you drill holes in the deck to mount winches and such, if not properly sealed, will leak water and over time rot the core. This can be an expensive or time consuming repair.

Then look at the overall structure: hull and deck and especially the joint between the two. The bulkheads, any rot and are they well attached to the hull and deck.

Then engine, then sails and rigging. Then come back to the forum and ask some more questions.
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Old 20-10-2015, 15:36   #5
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Re: Boat Help

If you're looking to do longer crossings, and the Pearson has the deeper full keel, that would be a major plus. Hard to know with no specifics.

Also I have an Oday 34, and bought her in great condition for 20k. Prices obv vary by region, but I would not spend more than that for sure for a smaller version.

Both are great boats.
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Old 20-10-2015, 15:55   #6
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Re: Boat Help

Yes, keep in mind asking prices are just that. Most are very negotiable.
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Old 20-10-2015, 16:13   #7
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Re: Boat Help

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Originally Posted by coveyrise View Post
The oday has a brand new universal 18hp diesel. Pearson has a 20hp universal not sure of hrs. Not sure which Pearson it is year is 84. Budget around 30K. I am new to sailing (1 year on lakes and bays)and will using it on weekends with an occasional 5-7 day sail. Still early in the process
So that is the Pearson 34 and both boats are of similar vintage (1984 or so?). The Pearson has a little more room but the O'Day is probably one of the roomiest 31 footers you'll see. All things being equal it is best to look for how well the boat has been maintained over the span of its years if possible. Brand new engine is a plus. If they are in good shape, both would make enjoyable coastal sailboats, but I personally wouldn't consider them for "blue water" or going far offshore without some modifications and/or reinforcements. Additionally they are a little on the light side for offshore comfort I think. But they are certainly faster and easier to handle than your typical "bluewater" boat. If you are considering eventually sailing farther afield and you want to stay around $30K there is a thread here for that! Is interior roominess the priority or the sailing qualities or strength of hull and rig, or ease of handling/sailing? Do you have to have a shower? Is one head enough?
Get a survey and sail it first too!
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Old 20-10-2015, 17:13   #8
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Re: Boat Help

With little experience, no matter how cheap or how good the deal is, you need a surveyor. You don't want to buy a boat and find out the engine needs a rebuild or the stanchions screws weren't properly sealed and now the core under is rotten.
That doesn't mean a boat with problems shouldn't be bought, but it has to be within a reasonable overall cost. A friend just bought a Pearson 34 with a bad engine. I wish I got there first.
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Old 20-10-2015, 17:56   #9
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Re: Boat Help

Coveyrise, a sailing location or home base might help people to advise as well. You don't want the same boat for the Florida Keys as you might for Norway for example. I'm guessing by your boat selections you're in the US or Canada?

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Old 21-10-2015, 05:11   #10
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Re: Boat Help

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, coveyrise.
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Old 21-10-2015, 07:15   #11
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Re: Boat Help

Wow thanks for all the info. I will try to answer your questions. We live in Texas and have mainly lake sailed. I have a 18 ft daysailor. We do not plan any crossings or major offshore sailing at this point. Yes they are both boats of the 80's. I will not buy with out a survey. Thanks for the comment about asking price. I was not sure how much haggling was normal. Another question broker or individual? What are your thoughts?

And thanks again for all the input!
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Old 21-10-2015, 07:23   #12
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Re: Boat Help

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Another question broker or individual? What are your thoughts?

And thanks again for all the input!
I would focus more on the boat and the deal than whether the seller is an individual or broker. Boats in this price range are often sold by the owner since the commission won't be huge. Some will say that the broker's commission makes the boat more expensive but that has not been my experience and I once was a yacht broker. I found a lot of owners had too much emotional attachment to their boats and priced them higher than the market. Also some owners don't really want to sell the boat but list it at a high price for various reasons.

So bottom line, if it's the right boat and right deal go for it.
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Old 21-10-2015, 18:36   #13
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Re: Boat Help

I will return to what most folks advise, and I too, if you have $30K look to buy for around $15K to $20K and leave the rest for getting or doing stuff for the boat. Even if the boat seems "turn-key" there always seems to be something to change, add or improve. I am pretty confident you can find a beautiful, sturdy and sea-worthy 30 to 34 footer in that range. In the 1960s fiberglass boats were largely hand laid up with very thick hulls. As a result they are very strong and many are still out there sailing. A well cared-for older boat of that vintage can be a real bargain. (Perhaps a Pearson Vanguard?) I have one of those older boats (Columbia 29) and love it. However those boats don't have as much interior room as later boats, and they don't have fin keels and spade rudders as a rule. (I don't mind my lack of interior room because I appreciate my boat's sailing qualities.) Later on in the 70s/80s many boats were not built so strongly and some also suffered from fiberglass resin issues that has led to blistering below the waterline, (something to ask about when looking.) Look for a boat from a respected builder that has been lovingly maintained and cared for. Look for a fairly fresh engine, rigging and sails, those are big ticket items. I agree with skipmac that good deals can be found from brokers and individual sellers.
Good deals come along, but you may have to be a little patient to find just the right boat for you.
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Old 23-10-2015, 08:29   #14
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Re: Boat Help

I have a 1985 34 Pearson which I have done a lot of work on the past three years updating her, a very good cruiser and pretty easy to single hand, some 25 years ago I owned a 1985 36 Pearson that I had for close to 5 years so I am pretty familiar with both models, the 36 is two feet longer and a foot beamier but size wise a much larger sailboat, built in water tank and more storage etc., with the centerboard both are good for Florida and the Bahamas, I'm not trying to sell my boat but if you want I live just south of Tampa, PM me and I will try to give you any info I can. When the Pearson's were new they were considered just a notch below A Sabre or Tartan, (no offence to any other boat owners)
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