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Old 13-11-2009, 21:07   #1
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Late-Model Catalina Build Quality

Is the Catalina's quality good for the money? captb335
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Old 14-11-2009, 01:51   #2
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I have owned a Cat 30 and 2 Cat 36's. I feel that for coastal cruising, they offer probably the best bang for the buck. Lead keels, keel-stepped mast, good hull to deck joint and lots of room. Now, since you mentioned late models, I must say that the new ones are really expensive in my mind. For the price of a new 375, for example, you can get a very well equipped 10 year old Pacific Seacraft 37 which is a far superior boat. What do you plan to do with it and how new are you talking?

Mike
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Old 14-11-2009, 05:11   #3
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Been on a few 40+ feet and they seem fine for offshore cruising.
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Old 14-11-2009, 09:36   #4
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We have friends with a 400 that regularly cross the Gulf of Mexico with it, and race.

However, I've refused all offers to go with them. We bought a blue water cruising boat so we wouldn't have to do that on a coastal cruiser...
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Old 14-11-2009, 10:24   #5
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I am very happy

Have a 2008 Catalina 350 MK11. owned it for 1.5 yrs now and its also in charter. Boat is in San Diego. I have been impressed greatly with the quality compared to the Hunters and Bene's that are also in the charter fleet. The guys taking care of the boats all joke that they wish they were all Catalina's in their fleet due to the relatively low maintanace compared to the others(they have about 3 catalinas,5 hunters and 10 benes). So far with 300 hours on engine my warranty claims consist of- NOTHING. We had to replace a door latch($25) on my own and fix a cycling water pressure motor (free) and did I say the boat is in Charter? Taken the boat to Catalina Isle with zero problems. I would even consider the boat for a cruise down to Mexico.


Knock on wood - and from reading the Catalina owners group boards it appears typical to later models.
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Old 18-11-2009, 08:19   #6
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very satisfied

We purchased a new Catalina C387 in March 2005. Our plans did not include ocean crossings or a circumnavigation so we only required a coastal cruiser not a heavy "blue water" boat. Initally we used the boat in the summers sailing on the Great Lakes. Since 2007 we have been traveling from Georgia to the Bahamas and cruising the Bahamas in the winter from Dec to April.

It is our experience that our boat is very well built, easy to sail and has a kindly motion at sea. We find it is an easy boat to live aboard for months at a time. We have only had one warranty issue with the boom and Catalina corrected that problem. Catalina has been very helpful with their advice on the changes I wanted to make to the boat.

I would certainly recommend the newer Catalina models and give Catalina high praise for listening to and helping their customers. Also the Catalina user groups are very active and a great source of help and information.

I have looked at upgrading to a larger boat and Catalina is my choice. Contact me if you need more info on our experiences.

Greg
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Old 18-11-2009, 08:33   #7
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I wholeheartedly agree. GREAT for staying within sight of land, but anything more is asking for major trouble. Much better off with the pacific szeacraft, heck even tayanas, cheoy lees etc. But it is your wallet and your life.
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Old 18-11-2009, 08:40   #8
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two different type boats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerryprocter View Post
I wholeheartedly agree. GREAT for staying within sight of land, but anything more is asking for major trouble. Much better off with the pacific szeacraft, heck even tayanas, cheoy lees etc. But it is your wallet and your life.

Hi Jerry the boats you mentioned are bonafide blue water cruisers.
The Late model Catalina is a great Coastal Cruiser.
The boats you mentiones are not coastal cruisers.
It is Apples and Oranges.

So of the Oranges- The Late Model Catalina's are a quality boat , that you can sail out of sight of land in sometimes below average conditions and has the most repeat clients of any sailing brand.
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Old 18-11-2009, 09:24   #9
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Originally Posted by jerryprocter View Post
I wholeheartedly agree. GREAT for staying within sight of land, but anything more is asking for major trouble. Much better off with the pacific szeacraft, heck even tayanas, cheoy lees etc. But it is your wallet and your life.
Jerry my statements about Catalina is from actual sailing experience out of sight of land, not from what I have just read about. I looked at the boats you mentioned but they were all smaller inside, slower, and heavier than a Catalina. It is foolish to state that it is necessary to stay in sight of land since thousands of Catalina, Hunter and Beneteau boats are safely cruising out of sight of land.

Why saddle yourself with a heavy, slow, boat that has neither the room nor the features of the newer boats. I and thousands of other sailors plan our voyages so that we do not run into unexpected weather. This is very easy to do if you are not crossing oceans.

Chris Parker for example has a very excellent weather service for sailors in the Bahamas and Carribean. With a little planning and forethought it is not necessary to sail in gales and hurricanes.

Greg
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Old 18-11-2009, 10:21   #10
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Originally Posted by jerryprocter View Post
I wholeheartedly agree. GREAT for staying within sight of land, but anything more is asking for major trouble. Much better off with the pacific szeacraft, heck even tayanas, cheoy lees etc. But it is your wallet and your life.
I love these blanket statements regarding Catalina's... as an owner of a C-42, I hear it all the time. Funny, you can't cross oceans in these crappy Catalinas yet every anchorage always has Catalinas in them. Just look at the numbers of Catalinas in the Pacific Puddle Jump.

My 42 has been sailed from Bremerton WA to Zihuatanejo, MX and back to San Francisco... guess what? Zero problems.

I sailed the 2006 Pacific Cup (San Francisco to Hawaii-2,200 miles) aboard a C-42. First 2 days in 35 knot winds & big seas. Racing, not cruising, with as much sail piled on as she would carry. Guess what? Zero problems. Oh, and 3rd place on our division. Did the '07 Ha Ha in another C-42. You guessed it... zero problems.
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Old 18-11-2009, 11:14   #11
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Is the Catalina's quality good for the money? captb335
Is this a troll or what? I mean the guy asks a question like this which you just know is going to spark controversy and then he disappears. Why do people do this? Bored? Take up knitting.
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Old 18-11-2009, 22:19   #12
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I own a Catalina 42 and to suggest that they shouldn't be sailed out of sight of land really is nonsense.

I regularly cross the South China Sea in mine (anywhere between 4 to 10 days offshore - depending where you cross). I have reached in winds of constant 50kts, gusting higher on it - with a post-typhoon sea, I have beaten in 40kts, gusting higher, I have had the mast in the water at least twice and can't remember how many knockdowns and broaches or how many times I have fallen off waves - I am not one of those reef early types !! : ) - I even managed to punch a whole in a main when I was sideswiped by a particularly nasty wave (it was an old main admittedly).

In the 15,000 ish miles I've sailed in her I have had 2 breakages - the shelf above the pullman berth became dislodged when i fell off a wave once and I have had a stay wire start to unravel (dyform - not Catalina).

Would she bang to wind for weeks on end without damage? - probably not - but then again, neither would I.
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Old 20-11-2009, 12:12   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdoe71 View Post
Is this a troll or what? I mean the guy asks a question like this which you just know is going to spark controversy and then he disappears. Why do people do this? Bored? Take up knitting.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bewitched View Post
... Would she bang to wind for weeks on end without damage? - probably not - but then again, neither would I.
Having been a professional baot repairer, I'm not particularily enamoured of any boatbuilder's product - they ALL have major flaws.
BUT
I think these & others have got it about right.
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Old 22-11-2009, 20:37   #14
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Older Catalinas

I love the postings. I have owned a C-27 with inboard diesel that I absolutely loved even if it was small. Also a C-30 back in the 80's. Always hated the purist insults of production boats. have seen them throughout the Caribbean, Bahamas and even Bermuda. Has anyone ideas on single handling a C-30 from eastcoast US to bahammas and caribbean. Foolish, or can be done?
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Old 23-11-2009, 15:55   #15
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Catalina

I'm perhaps a little biased...I own a Catalina 42 MK I. I have very much enjoyed the boat and have always felt safe when aboard. We have not done ocean crossings. Don't have the time, alas. But I had occasion to visit the company headquarters in California a couple of years ago. I was talking about buying a larger boat to eventually do some long-distance blue water travels. I found myself in the office of Gerry Douglas, who designed the boat. He asked me why I would want to replace my 42 as it could take me "anywhere I wanted to go".
I have read complaints of these boats being flimsy and not suited to offshore work. Well, I have partially dismantled mine and have been over every inch of it. Solid glass hull, very large stringers glassed in, heavily glassed-in bulkheads, sturdy hull-to-deck joint, etc. Does not look flimsy. Yes, I have been all over a Valiant 42 as well, a solidly-reputed "blue water boat". It's true that these boats have much heavier build, heavier hardware, and an interior that lends itself to "offshore" use. But, actually, all things being considered, I prefer my Catalina.
Of course, to cross an ocean, I would do a series of modifications, but I think that my boat would perform as well as the many other Catalina 42's that have crossed oceans.
I have noticed that most, if not all, of the critcisms of these boats as being too cheap or flimsy for offshore work come from the safety of an armchair and not from experience. I think that with the proper upgrades of equipment, the boat is fine for that purpose.
It has been said that more boats have been abandoned at sea due to the deficiencies of the crew than failure of the boat, and that many boats were later found safely afloat. So perhaps we should ask ourselves as many questions about the readiness of the crew as the boat they sail on.
In short, in boating, as elsewhere, there are plenty of people who look down their noses at things they are not truly familiar with.
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