As someone who currently has a Hans Christian 43 mk, I will try to comment on the OP's questions and the responses that many posted while remaining as non bias as possible.
The HC43 from king dragon is a very, very well build boat. The late 70's early 80's 38t and some 33t's built at the sha fin factory are the boats you hear about with the deck
top, and blister problem. Still well built just after 30 years the wear and tear is finally reaching a breaking point.
My 43 is 18 tons dry and as many would expect is very heavy to move in any light breeze. I have never had a problem getting it to move in 6 knots of wind
and we can make 3.5 knots with 10 knots of wind
and 6.5 knots with 15 knots of wind. Speed is never the problem with our boats and weather helm
balance is really dependent upon sail interval and not actual rig setup. When it is too light to sail we can motor
with our yanmar
at 7 knots. I have never found occasions when others were sailing the "lighter" displacement
hulls and we could not. Even with lighter boats when it is less than 7 knots most are motoring anyways. If your purpose is a leasure sunday sail, this is not the boat for you. This is the boat to take around the world on long ocean passages.
Why did I choose a HC 43, it had the space and comfort that we were looking for. Not only in the comfort of heavy seas but the interior
layout is spacious and well thought out. We can control the boat single
handed and like many are saying, when other boats are trying to control hobby and wallowing by reefing down and controlling helm
, we are pushing on while making dinner and drinks down below. As far as the last post of "wallowing" I am not familiar with how that pertains to a modified full keel boat. A boat surfing down a wave with a fin or bulb keel will wallow but a full keel should never wallow unless the helm is layed over when cresting a wave or they have pulled the sails
and heaving to in heavy seas. She is by far the most sea kindly sailboat I have ever sailed on in her size class. What brought my interest into a HC was the well documented story of several boats going from Tonga
( I believe) to NZ. 4 Boats were lost
, 3 had severe damage and when the HC pulled into port they asked how the owner made it. He said, "we went below and took a nap."
Yes you can find a similar boat but... to compare a Hans to a Colin Archer is like comparing your Toyota to a Ford. They have completely different design displacement and balance. Yes all have the same overall complextion and structure but the keel draw, waterline, S.O. and P.I. ratio are completely different.
Would I buy a HC again? Without question. Is it right for you? The real answer is that HC's are alot of work. All boat are alot of work but I have found that the time to maintain our boat is substantial over our last boat a Pearson
. The look that makes most turn thier heads and say "Oh," takes alot of time and maintanance. The traditional dutch look is the goal but you will pay for it in dock
time fixing and maintaning. Not that it is not worth it or rewarding but you need to go in with both eyes open.
Good luck on your search and please let me know if you have any other HC questions.