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Old 31-08-2009, 22:33   #1
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I Don't Want a Bluewater Boat

How about that? Everyone always comes onto this forum saying "I am going to retire buy the heaviest slowest boat I can find and sail it around the world." Not me, I want a practical boat.

What is the very greatest hits list for practical coastal cruisers? I am thinking 27-35 ft, good to very good sailing performance, medium draft, modest accomodations, modest price, medium looks, ages well, but also able to stand up in a bit of a blow, think 25-45 knots instead of the 70-100 knots most cruising boat shoppers anticipate. I don't want some playboy model. I am looking for the marrying type. This is more an exercise than an actual shopping list, I am just curious to hear about some quality middle of the road boats. Give me the boringest thing you've got.
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Old 31-08-2009, 23:31   #2
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It's actually the same answers as the blue water boat question...whatever the posters own!! but to answer your question more accurately, the 2006 Beneteau 393 is clearly the best coastal cruiser around. Hands down. If anyone posts otherwise, it just shows their ignorance and lack of understanding in what it truly means to be a coastal (or blue water) cruiser!
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Old 01-09-2009, 00:56   #3
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NAh! bENEYS SUCK...BY AN iRWIN CHEAp LIGHT for their time,STACKED WITH GOODIES ,wet and seductive....out dated but legendary...

My ignorance is glowing to be sure...

Besides any one from Everett knows nothing..... its a truisms around the PNW.
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Old 01-09-2009, 01:12   #4
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Unbusted,

I agree fully. If you would be living aboard, I would choose a Hunter and if it's for weekends & holidays I would choose a Catalina. I would also opt for younger instead of extra's.

ciao!
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Old 01-09-2009, 01:53   #5
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Funny you stated the bene 393 as a great coastal which I fully agree. But, there are tons of people, including a member (MarkJ) that is currently sailing about the world in theirs. I think sailing from the carib to OZ and beyond would qualify as blue water capable.
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Old 01-09-2009, 02:18   #6
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Caribbean to Aus is easy, it's downwind, now if they had gone the other way..............
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Old 01-09-2009, 02:57   #7
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I'd suggest an older boat for a cheap price & spending on how you want to outfit it. I used to have a mid-70s Cal330. It was solid & sailed quickly, easily single-handed. Though I had the deeper keel, there are shoal-drafts. I put money into new, oversized standing rigging, the engine & electronics. It was a great boat! There are lots of similar old boats out there, with thick hulls. Other than the thickness of your hull, the hull to deck joint & keel to hull joint are the important considerations. The more money you save on your purchase = more money for maintenance, upgrades & cruising. Whatever you choose, for your area, it should be blue-water capable. I'm not a big fan of the Catalina - thin walled, not strong rig - but they are very roomy.
That's my 2 bits worth. Best of luck with your purchase.
Mike
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Old 01-09-2009, 06:42   #8
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What do you mean by "modest price?" If modest means 150,000, I'd definitely go with one of the newer production boats with a big fat tushie and huge interior.

If modest means 25,000 I'd look at something like a Pearson 35 or Aloha 32.
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Old 01-09-2009, 07:10   #9
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Go Sabre!

I may be biased, but I'm a Sabre fan. Sure, the newer ones can be pricey, but they're nice, tough boats. I posted a story here a year or so ago on the sailor's confessional that proves it.

Shoot, I got mine for $17k ($16k if you count the $1k from the sales price that the PO spent to fix a crack in the rudder). That's fairly cheap. Dunno if I'd want to sail her around the world, but I'll bet she could make it.
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Old 01-09-2009, 07:34   #10
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I recently purchased a Hunter 30 shoal draft for 26K. It'll be just fine for a few months in the Bahamas. For years I had a Westerly Centaur 26 that I purchased for 10K. Several Bahamas and Great Lakes cruises on that.

A lot of boats will get the job done when it comes to coastal.
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Old 01-09-2009, 07:51   #11
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There's lots of smaller Bristols out there and reasonably priced too. Some centerboard, some not, all are tough boats. Could do the Blue if necessary. Saw B34s for around 22-25k.
bristol (Sail) Boats For Sale
But of COURSE I'm biased!
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:14   #12
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How many people do you plan to have on it while you are coastal cruising?
If it usually only two then look at an Alberg 30 for under $20K.
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:25   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Unbusted,

I agree fully. If you would be living aboard, I would choose a Hunter and if it's for weekends & holidays I would choose a Catalina. I would also opt for younger instead of extra's.

ciao!
Nick.
As a liveaboard, I have to disagree here that lighter, fin-keeled boats make good liveaboards.

If you don't believe me, just look out over a typical marina on any given day and observe the swaying of the masts during a gust or when some %$^!! powerboater ignores the 6kt buoy. You will see some masts that look like metronomes and some that hardly move at all. The former tend to be lighter, fin keelers. Now, imagine yourself living aboard one of them.

The next consideration is storage. The boats designated as "bluewater" typically have much better storage as well as load carrying capacity. My Tayana, for example, has loads of storage and I can keep a liveaboard's stash in her without denting the waterline. I doubt you could say that about many lighter weight fin keelers.

A third point is that the boats mentioned (and a few that I won't mention) typically have interiors that are not made to last. While your late-model Hunters, Catalinas, etc. are more spacious than the older designs, the cabinetry is usually constructed of composite material with a thin laminate that is easily scratched and/or pulled apart over time. This may not be a big factor if the boat is a weekend cruiser, but as a liveaboard it is going to get a lot more abuse. The hardwood interiors of the older boats hold up much better and are definitely the way to go here, IMHO.

As an illustrative example of the latter point, I have a liveaboard friend who recently purchased a nearly new French-built boat and his Labrador Retriever has basically ruined the companionway ladder after just a few weeks. The same dog has been up and down my (hardwood) companionway ladder dozens of times to no bad effect.
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:30   #14
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How many people do you plan to have on it while you are coastal cruising?
If it usually only two then look at an Alberg 30 for under $20K.
I think the Alberg 30, for the price, is a great deal. It's solid, seaworthy and there's an enthusiastic fleet here on the Chesapeake and elsewhere. If I weren't living aboard, I would definitely consider it.
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:39   #15
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the albergs and cape dorys were designed to stand up to 30 or 40 knots of wind. they may not be as roomy as your beneteau or catalina ..
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