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Old 15-05-2011, 10:57   #16
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

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Originally Posted by S/V Alchemy View Post
Don't forget the Contessa 32, in my view an equally safe (and faster) boat of proven design, if not as famous as the 26.
Not to mention 4-6 times as expensive. It's related but a very different animal.
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Old 19-06-2011, 19:21   #17
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

You want a condo? Contessas are not it .You want to be able to sail to the ends of the earth in a beautiful (form follows function) boat at reasonable cost? Contessas are legendary.
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Old 20-06-2011, 05:48   #18
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

See the reviews:
http://bluewaterboats.org/contessa-26/
Contessa 26 - Used Sailboat Market in Canada
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Old 13-10-2011, 22:29   #19
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

I roared with laughter when I saw Roverhi,s comments about the forward head and the forward galley and determining which was being used. That was Me 35 years ago. When cruising on a 26 footer you use every bit of space you can. Would I recommend going cruising on a Contessa. Darn right I would! It was a wonderful little boat, even if the key word is little. Our passages were very good for the size(Mexico-Marquesas 110 miles a day)in a badly over loaded boat. (Tuamotus-Hawaii 90 miles a day,even with 2 days in the doldrums) That also included 6 days close hauled under double reef main and storm jib. Mine was an early English built boat with a deep, very comfortable cockpit with just the right angles on the combings. Of course it wasnt self bailing but that was never a problem. The one thing I would disagree with on this forum, is the recommendations on wind vanes. Dont waste your money on fancy stainless contraptions that are heavy, fragile and very expensive. Buy a QUARTERMASTER from england for a simple light weight reliable vane. We did almost 8000 miles in the Contessa and the vane never gybed us once and steered to weather better than I could. Another thing to think about when deciding on a boat is maintainence cost. !0 years later I had a Peterson 44 in the Caribbean and was spending more per month to cruise than I had spent per year on the 26. Enough for now. Pete! it is great to see you are still messing about with boats. I hope to get back into sailing.______Grant.
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Old 14-10-2011, 18:51   #20
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

I believe it was a Contessa 26 that Tania Aebi used for her solo circumnavigation. If a teenage girl can do it -----
Google "Maiden Voyage".
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Old 14-10-2011, 19:58   #21
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

Ty Techera sailed the Contessa 32 "Gigi" around the Horn.
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Old 18-10-2011, 08:26   #22
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

This young guy crossed the Atlantic in a Contessa 26 and did a pretty good job filming it:

See video by bigoceansvoyage:



Tom
Bristol 27 Winter Dream
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Old 18-10-2011, 08:31   #23
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

Beautiful Contessa 26 video with 80's music!

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Old 18-10-2011, 08:36   #24
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

Contessa 26 for sale. See pictiures:
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Old 18-10-2011, 09:14   #25
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Grant.
Thanks for sharing your experiences with the C26.
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Old 18-10-2011, 17:24   #26
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

Another awesome Contessa 26 crossing the Atlantic video:

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Old 25-10-2011, 21:52   #27
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

Roverhi, please Email me again. I sent a reply, but it must not have reached you.____Grant.
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Old 15-11-2011, 21:23   #28
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

CHANGES I MADE TO THE CONTESSA! My Contessa was originally purchased by a fellow that planned to sail around the world. He had done lots of reading and ordered the boat with a very good equipment list. The boat was shipped to San Francisco bay and sailed a few times, then the owner took a knock down in another boat and never sailed again. The boat went thru a few owners and was 4 or 5 years old when I bought her. It was in good condition except for the Volvo diesel that was trashed from bad maintainence. I had never heard of a Contessa, but I had been reading Hiscock, Street, Roth, and all of the Gurus, so the long keel and the equipment list made my decision for me. It was one of the best decisions in my life. The boat came with main, trysail #1genoa #2genoa ,storm jib 30 fathoms of anchor chain and a 25lb CQR. It had a Quartermaster wind vane and an Avon dinghy. I sailed and learned for a year or so ,on the bay and decided to put a short (18 inches) bow sprit on for an anchor roller. Took a few months off and cruised the Calif coast and bought an anchor windlass to handle all of that chain. I was young and fit but the chain was too much work. Next came a boom gallows. I never trusted the topping lift. The gallows became the logical place to fit a dodger to. I also sewed up weather clothes for all the way around the cockpit which I attached with shock cord so that a wave would not flatten the stantions or push pit. I got good at sewing and made a complete cockpit awning and a small sailing awning. I bought some spinnacre cloth and sewed up a drifter which worked very well. I also put steps up the mast which payed off later when I had to change a headstay a 1000 miles out at sea. I had also purchased a roller furling working jib which caused the headstay to go bad. Down below I removed the starboard v-berth and put a second hanging locker for foulies, and moved the head off to the starboard side. The stove was alcohol and bolted down on a shelf in the forward compartment. I got rid of it and put a gimbeled kerosene stove which served us well. There was no chart table or dining table in the boat so I made a 4 inch thick table that fit charts and was used for meals. It folded up to the overhead hand rail when not in use. I also made a small cockpit table that was used all of the time at anchor. The second year ( I was still making payments) I took the unreliable diesel out to overhaul it and enjoyed sailing without the hassle of a motor, so I left it out. The third year we paid the boat off and decided to go to Mexico and maybe the South Pacific. We gunkholed down the coast (learning as we went) and had a great time. I started using preventers out to each aft lower shroud chainplate to keep from having any uncontrolled gybes and liked them so much that they became permanent. They also snugged the boom down enough to prevent the sail from chafing on the shrouds. We did a lot of wing and wing sailing and loved it. The boat came equiped with twin whisker poles and double backstays , so I rigged one pole across the backstays and hooked a small sailing awning from the dodger to the pole It was attached with shock cord so if I had to manuever in a hurry it would not damage anything. All of the things that I have mentioned(plus many more small things) made the boat easier to sail , or safer or just plain easier to live on and improved the joy of Cruising. I hope if some cruiser learns one thing from this way too long of a post and has a little easier time, then it was worth writing.____Grant.
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Old 23-11-2011, 16:42   #29
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

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Originally Posted by austi012 View Post
Those seem like mighty interesting boats. Does anybody here have one? What are their sailing characteristics? Any design flaws?

thanks
Austi, they most certainly are. Everyone here has accurately summed up their characteristics. The lack of standing headroom for folks taller than 5'8" is a deal-breaker for some. Some owners of the early British models choose to raise their cockpit floor to promote better drainage. As far as I am aware, all of the Contessas and JJ Taylors came out of the factory with two pintles and gudgeons attaching the rudder. Many choose to add more, because if one was to fail, the entire weight of the rudder would be supported by the remaining single pintle and gudgeon. In my opinion, this is a very smart upgrade for this boat. I made a blog entry specifically about this issue to illustrate my point.
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Old 24-11-2011, 01:53   #30
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Re: I'd Be Interested in Hearing About a Contessa / JJ Taylor 26

I WON'T One !!!!!!!!
There is on Contessa advertised here ( in OZ), but not sure it it the right Contessa. It does not have a full Keel, it is a 26 footer. It does not have typical Contessa ruder and it is advertised as a Contessa 25.
Anyone can maybe help in this little confusion ?
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