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Old 04-09-2009, 08:09   #1
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Please Rank These Boats by Quality

Hi All,

We've been looking for a very well kept, early to mid 80's, 28' weekend cruiser/daysailor. Through my own research and conversations with others, I've gotten mixed opinions as to the relative quality/reputation of the boat manufacturers we're interested in. Can you please rank the following according to your knowledge/opinion in respect to durability, build quality, fit/finish and reputation? How big of a spread is there between these boats? Any specific comments would be appreciated.

Tartan
Sabre
Ericson
Cal
Beneteau
C & C

Thanks,

Jake
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:24   #2
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Originally Posted by Jake Tanley View Post
Hi All,

We've been looking for a very well kept, early to mid 80's, 28' weekend cruiser/daysailor. Through my own research and conversations with others, I've gotten mixed opinions as to the relative quality/reputation of the boat manufacturers we're interested in. Can you please rank the following according to your knowledge/opinion in respect to durability, build quality, fit/finish and reputation? How big of a spread is there between these boats? Any specific comments would be appreciated.

Tartan
Sabre
Ericson
Cal
Beneteau
C & C

Thanks,

Jake
Officially, I have no opinion. You might look online for Jack Horner's reviews (on Boat U.S.) and then at Practical Boat Buying.

The other thing to be aware of is that some you have thrown out brand names with no specific models, builders or years. In some cases, construction techniques and even builders have changed from year to year, affording for some variability.
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:28   #3
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BoatUS.com: Boat Reviews by Jack Hornor, N.A. - Tartan 37

BoatUS.com: Boat Reviews by Jack Hornor, N.A. - C&C 35

etc., etc.
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:49   #4
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Sorry, maybe I wasn't very clear. I've read dozens of individual reviews for each boat/model (including Jack Hornor's). What I'm looking for is how these builders relate to each other in regards to their reputation of quality and build, say between 1980 and 1986.

As an example, from everything I've read, most people would rank these three mfgs in this order (descending order of quality)

Catalina --> Hunter --> MacGregor

I'm not interested in these manufacturers, but when compared to each other, they've established a reputation in the industry.
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:49   #5
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All the brand names you mentioned built good boats back in the 80's. I'd also throw Catalina and Hunter into the mix. The most important consideration for you in buying one of these boats that is now 25 years old is how have they been maintained and used, and also what is the current condition of the sails and engine. Also important are the interior layout differences, and the condition of all the tanks.
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:55   #6
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opinions are like .... well you know. Every boat has an intended purpose it was designed for. A north sea, med boat will certainly look and feel different from an island boat built for the carib. The boats built for charter like Bene's and Jeanneau's to name two are production boats built for the cheapest price with the best features for a herd of customers. A Hallberg-Rassy on the other hand are built more like a one-off boat for an individual who would use it quite differently.

Ask a few of the same people referenced in your post about the best car mfg. and see what replies you get. It's that same deal. Everyone has a favorite and for their imagined purpose it might well be the perfect boat fromt he best mfg. but ask another who lives in a different area and their answers will reflect their environment and pre-conceived notions about "what" constitiutes the best mfg.

Sorry to be so vague but that's about the best answer unless you cite a specific difference actually compared through each of those mfg.
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Old 04-09-2009, 09:02   #7
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I'm not biased at all on this one, but....


The Sabre 28 is the best boat on that list, bar none.



You can trust me. Really.
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Old 04-09-2009, 09:46   #8
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I think it depends on the particular boat and particular design and period, but general quality in the mid 80's I would say those are all good boats. Today the Beneteau would be the bottom of my list, in the mid 80's it might be at the top. I dont mean today's Bene's aren't good though. Their designs are great, but the old Bene's were built hell for stout, oversized chainplates, rudder shafts etc etc. My impression on the Sabre's is the opposite, better now then the mid 80's. I've sailed the Benes, but not the Sabres though.... Really for coastal and weekend... I would just pick the nicest, newest one that you like the best...
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Old 04-09-2009, 09:55   #9
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I would place C&C towards the top of the list. Ericson towards the middle. Cal and Beneteau in between. I have not had any personal experience with the others.
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Old 04-09-2009, 21:09   #10
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I'd put Cal and Columbia about on an even par but you haven't listed Columbia so I'm outta line. I'd not put Tartans at the bottom of the list.
regards,
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