There's something to learn from this discussion that transcends the boat brands being discussed, so let's not overlook it as well. What can be 'typical' in these discussions is that any specific discussion on specific issues related to some boat brands gets quickly labeled as 'anti-production boat bias'. This makes the discussion easier, for some at least, because it shifts the focus to 'bias' (argumentum ad hominem
- if you can't argue the issue, argue the person) rather than dealing with the perplexing, challenging task of differentiating between 'suitable' and 'unsuitable' boats. My reading of the tenor of this discussion is that there isn't generic slamming of all models of any particular boat brand here.
"What I find remarkable about discussions...is the number of opinions expressed by people that are not owner's of the yachts being discussed..."
Really? Investors can only know about stocks they own, but not by researching & observing the performance of other companies? Only 'ownership' (of a car, a house, or a boat) legitimizes one holding an informed opinion worthy of being considered by others? Surely, discussion can reach beyond those presumed limits. To illustrate this, here's another specific example of a boat building practice: Some boats (and tho' I could be wrong, I think this is selectively in use only
by the high-volume production builders) fasten the hull
structure to the deck
structure by adhesive
alone. Not just no thru-bolting of the hull/deck joint...but also no mechanical fastening of any kind (screw, rivet) of the mish-mash, adhesive
or other bonding agent securing the hull/deck joint. So how does that work, in practice, as the boat's monocoque form is worked in a seaway, being racked and twisted? When it experiences an unintentional grounding? When it unintentionally takes a hard hit against a fuel dock
or berth piling? It's certainly not necessary to own such a boat to learn how successful this practice has been. Nor is it a form of 'bias' to end up concluding that, for some purposes, boats with this kind of joint are simply not suitable choices.
The reference to BAGHEERA, Andy & Liza's Beneteau
38 is a good one and, if you've talked with either of them, you'll find they are very pleased (and proud) of their boat choice. (In fact, their views 'feel' to me very much like the pleasure and pride I hear when reading some of Mark's blog commentary about his Beneteau). Just don't overlook the context in which the boat was chosen and then cruised when reading the article. The previous comment about not overlooking the seamanship of the sailor is spot-on, and both Andy & Liza were already pretty accomplished sailors when beginning their cruising. More importantly, they have a fair amount of 'grit', something present in all distance sailors. And as a regional sales rep, Andy knew the entire Beneteau line well. His was not a 'how big a boat can I get for my money
?' choice. And of course, the major difference for today's buyer is that BAGHEERA is a Beneteau built during a different era and built using somewhat different methods, chemicals and materials than is true today. Is a Beneteau built in the last five years (and coming out of charter
now) up to doing a Circle today? I'd suggest that the only reasonable answer is 'It depends...' and the devil's in the detail.