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Old 17-03-2011, 04:08   #1
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In France, Looking for the Right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

OK here goes. My first post. After years of vague dreaming and sailing on other people's boats, a couple of charters, months of "why not me?" contemplation, and now weeks of intense internet browsing for boats (and reading this forum which has been very helpful - as well as inspirational!), I am actually going to visit a boat this weekend. Deep breath.

The objective: ARC Rally 2012. Then some Caribs cruising. The rest depends on time and money and how much we love cruising but we would probably return to Europe after a few months.

The plan is to buy a boat this Spring, sail it through the summer (here in France, where we live) to get to know the boat and figure out what needs upgrading and refitting. This gives me a year to prepare the boat (and everything else) and work my way down to the Canaries by Oct-Nov, 2012.

The budget: 75,000 euros, including all improvements.

The crew: My wife and 7 year old son for the Caribs cruising (though for the transat I will probably sail with a few sailing buddies).

The boat I will visit this weekend is a 1984 Wauquiez Pretorien which appears to be fairly well equipped and in reasonable condition. I have so far convinced myself that given my limited budget, it makes more sense to look for a well-mainted older boat from a well-regarded builder like Wauquiez than, for example, a late 90's vintage mass-production boat (Jeanneau/Beneteau/Dufour). I am interested in hearing back on a few points:

1. From people who know the Wauquiez line (and particularly the Pretorien): - Do you agree this would be a good choice? Why or why not?
- What to look for?
- What upgrades you would make to a standard Pretorien in preparation

2. From people who know their stuff: Am I on the right track? What other boats would you look at, given budget and geographical location? I should mention that I will most likely be sailing in the Channel during my preparations, though I have considered moving her around to the Med. Yet to be decided. Finding a slip is a real challenge here, for starters.

Enough from me. Will appreciate your thoughts.
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Old 17-03-2011, 13:06   #2
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

Hi,

I had a quick look at Pretoriens on the Yachtworld and they are priced at 50 to 65k. If I had a 75k budget I would not spend this much on the boat. Unless you are not new to sailing, know exactly what you want from the boat and how to get it.

In any boat of that age you may need a complete re-rigging, new sails, engine overhaul, systems overhaul, electronics update, etc.. Much depends on how adequately you can manage the case in hand and how the necessary upgrades would be executed - many long time sailors can do everything in the boat by themselves which reduces the costs. If you plan on ordering anything to be done rather than doing things yourself, then make sure you are 100% aware of actual prices on your market and start with a very detailed and sound "business plan".

75k for a EU to West Indies project sounds perfectly adequate and Wauquiez boats are well spoken of. My friends, long term cruisers and circumnavigators got themselves a Centurion 32. They are very happy with this boat.

Good luck!

Cheers,
barnie
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Old 17-03-2011, 15:05   #3
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My tuppence is that if I could find a newer beneteau or jeanneau at similar money I'd buy those makes instead.

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Old 17-03-2011, 16:36   #4
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

BigLeap:

Sounds like a realistic plan to me. Hal Roth, God rest his soul, sailed around the world on a Wauquiez Pretorian. The only thing is that I wouldn't limit myself to that boat. There are other boats around that would be equally good for the trip and perhaps at lower cost.

Also be aware of the average size of boats in the ARC I believe that the average is closing in on 50' so the tail end of the fleet won't have as much attention as the rest of the fleet.
Length of ARC Yachts [all LOA in m]
Year Average Median
1986 11.89 11.60
1987 12.27 11.88
1988
1989 13.14 12.79
1990 13.98 13.85
1991 14.11 13.28
1992 13.05 12.15
1993 13.62 13.17
1994 13.78 13.18
1995 13.84 13.26
1996 13.83 13.24
1997 13.76 13.35
1998 14.23 14.00
1999 13.92 13.34
2000 14.39 13.70
2001 14.90 14.08
2002 14.53 13.95
2003 14.94 13.95
2004 15.14 14.50
2005 14.79 14.02

You may end up sailing by yourself or out of VHF radio range for a lot of the Rally.

Don't forget to think of the end game. In other words where do you and your boat want to be at the end of this adventure.

A couple of the expensive upgrades to the boat are 1) liferaft 2) SSB 3) Standing rigging 4) sails. I suggest that you make a spreadsheet and find out the cost of the items that you feel you really will need on a boat and look at boats through the lens of your spreadsheet. It helps to give a more realistic eye on your goal and to keep the budget in line. Also I would look at the ARC website and check over their list of must have equipment.
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Old 17-03-2011, 17:10   #5
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

Great boats!

Reinforce the head stay backing plate, look on the owners group for details.

Have fun and sail fast.


Quote:
Originally Posted by BigLeap View Post
OK here goes. My first post. After years of vague dreaming and sailing on other people's boats, a couple of charters, months of "why not me?" contemplation, and now weeks of intense internet browsing for boats (and reading this forum which has been very helpful - as well as inspirational!), I am actually going to visit a boat this weekend. Deep breath.

The objective: ARC Rally 2012. Then some Caribs cruising. The rest depends on time and money and how much we love cruising but we would probably return to Europe after a few months.

The plan is to buy a boat this Spring, sail it through the summer (here in France, where we live) to get to know the boat and figure out what needs upgrading and refitting. This gives me a year to prepare the boat (and everything else) and work my way down to the Canaries by Oct-Nov, 2012.

The budget: 75,000 euros, including all improvements.

The crew: My wife and 7 year old son for the Caribs cruising (though for the transat I will probably sail with a few sailing buddies).

The boat I will visit this weekend is a 1984 Wauquiez Pretorien which appears to be fairly well equipped and in reasonable condition. I have so far convinced myself that given my limited budget, it makes more sense to look for a well-mainted older boat from a well-regarded builder like Wauquiez than, for example, a late 90's vintage mass-production boat (Jeanneau/Beneteau/Dufour). I am interested in hearing back on a few points:

1. From people who know the Wauquiez line (and particularly the Pretorien): - Do you agree this would be a good choice? Why or why not?
- What to look for?
- What upgrades you would make to a standard Pretorien in preparation

2. From people who know their stuff: Am I on the right track? What other boats would you look at, given budget and geographical location? I should mention that I will most likely be sailing in the Channel during my preparations, though I have considered moving her around to the Med. Yet to be decided. Finding a slip is a real challenge here, for starters.

Enough from me. Will appreciate your thoughts.
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Old 19-03-2011, 21:13   #6
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

Wauquiez is practically France's version of Hinckley (before they started building Picnic boats). Benétau and Jeanneau simply don't compare. You may want to try posting on Hisse et oh (Forums) for more detailed information from people who know Prétoriens better. If you can get one for a bit less than your budget, and use the remainder to fix her up the way you want, it sounds like you have a great time ahead of you.
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Old 19-03-2011, 22:46   #7
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

I agree with peoples comments but for a boat that old you need a good cash reserve.

Mine is a '86 Tayana and over the last 3 years I have replaced all the standing rigging including all the turn buckles and fittings. I knew that needed to be done when I bought it and there was a price reduction on purchase. That was done even though the seller assured me the boat had had a re-rig only nine years previously.

I would be very nervous of sailing off-shore in a boat with 28 yr-old standing rigging which is why some insurance companies will not insure the rig if it is that old. One policy I looked at stated that the rig was not insured if any part was over 17 yrs-old.
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Old 23-03-2011, 08:15   #8
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Wauquiez Pretorien or Dufour 35 Classic (In France looking for BWC)

Thanks very much to all for your helpful responses. The Pretorien is a solid boat and this one is in fairly good shape. Current owner seems to have taken good care of her - has all receipts, etc. There are no obvious big issues. Yes, standing rigging probably will need inspection and probably to be replaced before any serious cruising. But this is a serious contender.

Now I have to stir it up a bit to see what you think: For just a couple thousand more euros, there is a Dufour 35' Classic built in 2000 (that's 16 years younger than the Pretorien), with the same Volvo 28 saildrive (with 1/3 the hours - there are 1250 on the Pretorien) and similarly equipped. The Dufour is the 3 cabin version.

Clearly the Dufour doesn't have the great reputation of the Pretorien. Is it up for serious cruising? How does it compare? Will appreciate your thoughts here.
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Old 23-03-2011, 09:09   #9
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pirate Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

I can tell you what the Wauquiez 'Chance' is like... in a couple of weeks after I've delivered it... pick up the boat on Sunday..
Its been on the hard for over 18mths so will be checking it over carefully...
gives you another option from the Pretorian......
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Old 23-03-2011, 20:32   #10
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

If the motor is as well cared-for as you say the Wauquiez is generally, you can probably ignore the difference in engine-hours. Our Yanmar 3gm is raw-water cooled and was new in 1982. Diesels last a long time when you take care of them. If you don't, they don't. The previous owners of our boat had to REPLACE the engine after the first year! It seems they learned from that. The French seem to have a penchant (a French word, even) for replacing engines before they really have to. Perhaps the mechanics promote this so they can provide cheap used engines to their friends in the fishing fleets.

After a passage, some boats -even relatively new ones - seem to look really tired and beat up, while others - sometimes quite old - appear to have been used, but not beaten. Some boats look good when they're polished and the brightwork is new, but don't pass muster if they're not all shiny. Others look good even if the varnish is dull and the topsides faded. With your goals, and a family coming along, you need a boat you can be proud of after a passage without having to spend a day polishing the topsides to look good.
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Old 15-04-2011, 15:59   #11
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

I missed this thread earlier. We are fairly new Pretorien owners. I have yet to find anything on the boat where I say to myself "what were they thinking". On the contrary, I, well, we are more and more impressed the more we get to know her. The attention to detail in the design, and her sailing feel are quite extraordinary, especially for a 35 foot boat.

There is a Wauquiez owners group on Yahoo, that you could join it you want more opinions.

Let me know if you have specific questions.

Chris
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Old 15-04-2011, 18:15   #12
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Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

FWIW,

If I was in your position budget-wise, I'd not likely be considering doing the ARC. I don't see what one gets back for the considerable expenses involved. This includes the entry fees plus having to meet all their equipment requirements, some of which are not really needed for your proposed activities.

As always, YMMV.

And I too reckon that the Pretorian is quite capable of all that you propose if in good nick.

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Lake Macquarie, NSW, Oz

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Old 15-04-2011, 18:50   #13
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pirate Re: In France, looking for the right BWC (Wauquiez Pretorien?)

Wauquiez Rocks....
Just delivered a near death Wauquiez Chance 37......
what a boat.
If the lads fix her up well in new clothes they'll have a boat and a half...
man shes fast....
bit twitchy with the narrow stern in a F8 up the butt but a real flyer from 170 either side...
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