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Old 19-05-2019, 04:46   #1
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Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

So after searching for a cat for my family to live on and seeing quite a few I have come to the conclusion that I should go with a mono-hull - Budget has been spanked by a sh*t housing market (Perth Australia) and by the Aussie Dollar collapsing - I am looking for a VAT paid boat in Europe.


Looking for a Blue Water Cruiser 48-54' with a minimum of 3 Cabins that is a quality build and on the easier side to short hand - Up to around USD$300K.



Should I avoid any of the following for build/quality reasons:


Bavaria
Moody
Beneteau
Jeaneau
Hanse
Dufour


Also any recommendations for quality boats to look at would be appreciated
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Old 19-05-2019, 05:45   #2
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

When it comes to production boats there's all sorts of opinions, many non informed. In saying that, it's also true some are better builds than others.
In Europe I liked the grand Soliels, they seemed quite robust ie galvanised steel frame glassed in to the hull.

It's important to look at the hardware fitted. I choose my Catalina 470 due to much more robust hardware than some equivalent boats, harken 66 winches, lead keel, bigger and accessible chain plates etc. I was on a RM1350 yesterday, a boat that I like but to be honest once you look past how cool it is I was underwhelmed with its hardware robustness. I'd also look at rudder set ups, I've seen some that I wouldn't feel confident crossing an ocean with.

It's easy to over lock such things and focus on just the wow factor of interiors.

Interesting sailboats blog written by a member here is very informative. Pablo cops some flack here at times which I think is mostly undeserved, he's extremely knowledgeable on European boats and seems generous to pass on his knowledge, worth trying to contact him. I'd say he knows more about European boats than most here, certainly more than I.
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Old 19-05-2019, 06:06   #3
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

One other thing. IMHO and that's all it is my opinion, I wouldn't buy a yacht which has a full liner. All yachts (most) have some sort of liner setup ie shower/head etc but I don't personally like having a hull with a full liner. I think it's hard to assess damage caused by a grounding, how do you see liner separation?

I'm only using my boat as example because it's mine, not because it's the best. I have a very large structural fiberglass grid (think frame) that is glassed to the hull. If I had a hard grounding I can remove all the floor and the five water tanks relatively easily and have a complete visual inspection of the hull, I should be able to determine the extent of the damage. On a full liner boat you don't have this access.

My 2 cents.
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Old 19-05-2019, 06:14   #4
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

look for the hull to deck joint to be an inboard flange with strong rub rail. also avoid boats with molded pans and shallow bilges .. you want structural members bonded to the hull .. not glued. better that the keel not be bolted on. an anchor platform and locker would be good if you plan on cruising. good luck with your search
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Old 19-05-2019, 06:29   #5
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

I. Like what daletournier offered.

Some people will bash certain manufacturers, then owners will come along and claim theirs is awesome and blue water capable. So I’ll let someone else start the slugfest.

Do your homework. All models have issues, some more than others. Some are just fine until something bad happens. Dale gave some great considerations I suggest doing a deep dive into each of his points.
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Old 19-05-2019, 06:47   #6
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gonesail View Post
look for the hull to deck joint to be an inboard flange with strong rub rail. also avoid boats with molded pans and shallow bilges .. you want structural members bonded to the hull .. not glued. better that the keel not be bolted on. an anchor platform and locker would be good if you plan on cruising. good luck with your search
I respectfully dispute your opinion regarding bolt on keels, it's a to generalised statement. There are many more bolt on keels out there than any other type , they have been around close to a century, are you telling me that Amels aren't structurally up there with the best because they have bolt on keels?

Once again it comes down to the quality of built, eg I believe in having a properly designed keel stub the keel bolts on to, alot don't have this.

Bolt on keel statements are much the same as "catamarans flip" don't get one..... it's just not true.
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Old 19-05-2019, 07:05   #7
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gonesail View Post
you want structural members bonded to the hull .. not glued.
Exactly

There is a difference in quality between the manufacturers, and this is also reflected in the prices for second hand boats.

The same here as with everything, you get what you pay for.
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Old 19-05-2019, 07:20   #8
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

don't get one that has lost its' rudder or keel, or has been sunk

But seriously you need to look beyond the brand and into specific models. It's just like getting a car in that the "big" guys make a lot of models and they vary a lot. Which brings up age, no "newer" model has a track record to review and research, just like new cars.
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Old 19-05-2019, 09:10   #9
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

Don't discriminate just on a builder after all one man's Ford Escort is another's Rolls Royce. People slag Bavaria because they are seen as a basic, charter fleet boat and while that is true the build quality of the new Farr BMW version is excellent as you would expect from a German manufacturer who uses robots to lay down the hull to exacting specifications. Each and every hull. And they are A rated for open ocean.

Yes Hallberg Rassey, Naiad and other boats might seem "bombproof" but they are just as liable to dogs as anyone else. Trading on a name can result in poor quality over time.

Look for the boat that ticks all the boxes for the kind of sailing you want to do and be realistic. Are you going to sail the Atlantic or round Cape Horn or go to Svalbard in winter? Or will you end up sailing around the Med for years?

Sure I am biased towards my Bavaria but then she does everything I want of my boat, is comfortable, sleeps 6 if we have to and is quite capable of handling 50kt winds, thunderstorms, big waves and keep us very very safe.
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Old 19-05-2019, 10:05   #10
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

I the used sailboat market there are hundreds of custom built boats high quality that will match the price of the cheap production boats. My favourite for the price are Tayanas. Many to choose from 48 to 58 feet for the reasonable price. If you pick one for around a 200 grand and spent another 100 on the new motor, sails, cushions, rigging. One thing will be for sure that your rudder will be protected by the skeg and keel is integral part of the hull
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Old 19-05-2019, 10:30   #11
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MartinR View Post
Exactly in

There is a difference in quality between the manufacturers, and this is also reflected in the prices for second hand boats.

The same here as with everything, you get what you pay for.
sorry if it's a stupid know-nothing (vs know-it-all) question.... I read about bulkheads and structural components being glassed in with fiberglass cloth plus epoxy.
How is it different from "gluing"?
Thanks
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Old 19-05-2019, 10:34   #12
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

I do not have enough data to compare production boats of different brands in terms of quality. Apparently, and understandably, reliable data on this subject does not seem to exist. There is quite a bit of anecdotal data, but generally contradicting and unreliable. When I bought my boat, I went with the assumption that the major popular brands (Beneteau, Jeanneau, Hanse, etc.) are more or less equivalent in terms of quality, or at least the differences are not very significant.

One additional consideration that has not been mentioned in the thread yet is the quality of the rigging, the hardware, the systems, the sails, etc. on the boat, in addition to the soundness of the hull. My impression is that these elements in all popular production boats are done on the cheap. To make any production boat truly seaworthy, significant improvements/changes in these elements are necessary. The quality of what comes from the factory is adequate for general use, like inshore cruising or low-key racing, but improvements are probably desirable when it comes to crossing oceans safely.
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Old 19-05-2019, 10:42   #13
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

I would be delighted to own any of the makes you have suggested and happy to take them on long offshore trips, in the right season. At a recent trip to the Southampton Boatshow all the yachts were fin keeled, suggesting that they are by far the biggest selling type of mono yacht that buyers want.

Perhaps its worth qualifying "in season" and I can do no better than give Markj who we sadly haven't heard from in a while as an example. He and gf bought a Beneteau 393 and with little preparation sailed one and a half times around the world by choosing the best seasons. They didn't have AC, genny or watermaker, but still made it and had a great time. They bought new sails half way around after the boats original sails finally wore out but otherwise minimal problems and expense.

Also worth looking to see what everyone else is using. These are the entries for the Atlantic Rally For Cruisers by year. Pretty much a good spread of European made fin keeled yachts.

https://www.worldcruising.com/arc/ar...spx?eventid=98

This is going to be your home for a long time so rather than focus marques, I would start with the layout that will suit your needs as a home. For example will you be happy with a kitchen along one side or a separate galley area. Centre cockpit or stern cockpit?

I wouldn't rule out VAT free yachts, since if they are sold in Europe then VAT will be payable by the vendor as part of the sale. This might increase the price slightly but means you get a VAT receipt for the future, so not a concern.

Finally your timing might make a difference. As Autumn draws in any yachts in NW Europe not sold will probably need taking ashore with the prospect of long winter storage costs.

Good luck.
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Old 19-05-2019, 10:43   #14
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

Ideally, the reinforcements (floors) are built up at the same time as the hull, making one solid part. This means in a grounding the keel reinforcements will not separate from the hull. My keel is supported by 8" wide and 4" thick floors that extend several feet out and a 4" thick central stringer. All integral with the hull. This is expensive to produce, but very strong.

On many boats, the keel reinforcements are laminated separately and then glued in place. This means they can accept the normal forces a keel imposes, but act sacrificial in a grounding. Not that the boat will sink, but making for expensive repairs.
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Old 19-05-2019, 11:38   #15
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Re: Production Mono's - Any to avoid?

You do not need to reinvent the wheel. Boats are very similar to cars. You have the mass produced boats (Beneteau is by far the leader) that produce quality and innovative boats. Look at the Sense line, look at the larger cockpits, light, etc. They make good design decisions and very few of us here can judge them. Bolt on keels, full liners, whatever. The designers have gone through the pro’s and con’s many times over. Beneteau makes some of the best racing boats out there so they know how to put a boat together to meet their target market. They are also the volume leader, so if you exclude the boats on your list from consideration, you would be left with a few, small scale manufacturers (the equivalent of a Ferrari). Where the quality shows is 5-10 years down the road, when the Beneteau‘ sand the like start falling apart (not their keels or rigging) but the woodwork, the alignment since the hulls flex more, etc. So, they depreciate much faster. But even if you get a half million Beneteau today and sell it for $300K five years later, you will be better off than getting a million dollar HR that you sell for $600K five years later, and it will be a much harder sell because the customer base is limited. If you buy used, the concept is the same until boats are 25 years old at which point their value is largely determined by the amount of money the owner has invested, not the original purchase price.

Thus, you need to decide, do you care about light, space, modern look or do you want a “solidly” build boat. Both will serve your purpose, one will do it in more style, if you cared about that style. Do you want to buy new and ride down the depreciation curve or play in the used market? These are far more important questions than what brand to focus on.
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