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Old 06-03-2016, 15:11   #1
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Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

Hey guys. This coming week I am probably buying one of the three above mentioned boats.

The Ranger: Lots of work. The seller is describing the hull as needing "TLC". Also, the inside looks a little bit run down. The galley has some wood pieces missing or falling off, and the cushions need at least something over them. And some panelling is missing in the head (which the owner says works). I'm probably not going to able to afford to pull it out of the water, but I will be able to get in the water and give it a good scrape once she is home.
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The Catalina 25: I don't know much yet. Just that the outside looks pretty healthy and clean and that it is a 1985. It is also listed as having a new mainsail, an 8hp outboard, and I can see a furling jib sail.

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The Hunter 27(s): There are two listed in my area. The first has new rigging, a new headsail, and a Yanmar 1 GM10. This boat looks good except for a kind of run down interior.

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The second looks to be a little more used and has a nicer interior. But the sails are a little shoddy on it.

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I intend on using this boat to sail from Tampa, down across the gulf stream, and finally to the Abacos. Which one do you think I should go look at first? I really like the hunters, but they're not well known for being great boats.
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Old 06-03-2016, 15:20   #2
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

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Originally Posted by jacobswe View Post
Which one do you think I should go look at first?
Based on the pics: none ..

But if it has to be one of these 3, then I guess the 3rd. At least I don't see mold or anything too horrible. You said it'll need new sails - they all do, probably.

I am going to assume these are very cheap boats, and my suggestion would be to spent more on the initial purchase (so you'll need less for getting them back into a more acceptable shape).
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Old 06-03-2016, 15:30   #3
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

Yeah, my budget is only $2500. I had something great lined up, but it fell through.

In the end, I'll probably end up taking one of the hunters instead of having to put all the extra effort into getting the extra 2 feet out of the Ranger.
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Old 06-03-2016, 15:33   #4
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

$2500 for purchase and upgrading / refitting?

I don't know your what your local market is, but $2500 should buy you something a little more decent then these boats?

Keep your money in your pocket and keep looking is probably the best advise in this case.
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Old 06-03-2016, 15:45   #5
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

Are you in some kind of a rush? Personally I think your budget is too low for what you are planning. Of the three the Ranger has a better rep and can be a very good performer. But it will need work and $ put into it.
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Old 06-03-2016, 15:46   #6
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

If you want to cruise, you might want to look for an old full keel blue water cruising boat like a Bristol 27, Contessa 26, or Albin Vega 27.

There was a Bristol 27 in Fredericksburg, VA for $4,000. I'm betting you could get it on your budget. I rarely recommend a boat like I have but on your budget:

The Bristol 27 Sailboat : Bluewaterboats.org

http://bluewaterboats.org/albin-vega-27/

http://bluewaterboats.org/contessa-26/


http://sailboatdata.com/viewrecord.asp?class_id=601


One of the above might save you in rough weather if you were totally exhausted and knew how to heave too or lay a haul whereas the boats on your list may not

Restored Contessa 26. This boat is an awesome looking boat built to scale which is why you cannot stand up inside the cabin

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Old 09-03-2016, 10:10   #7
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

I would choose the H27, as I have owned one since 1983. They are great sailing boats and at 7500# is probably heavier than either of the others. These boats were designed by John Cherubini and built by Warren Luhrs. They have a mini cult following with their own associations, etc. Their construction is superior to any of the other production boats of that time period. The tired woodwork in the interior, just clean and apply teak oil and you would be amazed how good it looks. These boats were built from 1976 to 1983. The 1979 thru 1983 having more opening ports and wheel steering. On any boat check the condition of electrical and plumbing, as these systems are expensive and time consuming to bring up to date. Good luck
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Old 09-03-2016, 10:17   #8
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

At the lower end of the market, the relatively small difference in price between examples that have been very well maintained and upgraded, and those that have not, means that it is never worth entertaining buying the latter - unless you really enjoy the process of restoration (and can overlook the financial hit).

The problem of course is finding the nice examples - they can be few and far between. It will take patience in any case, and if you narrow it down to one model first, a lot of patience.

I'd also suggest buying a copy of "The complete sailboat maintenance manual" by Don Casey, which begins with an excellent chapter on self-surveying ageing sailboats.

You can get just the surveying part as a separate book, but the rest of the maintenance manual will be handy later.
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Old 09-03-2016, 10:23   #9
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

I'd go with the one in the best shape, but if things are equal I'd go with the bigger boat. From your description, it sounds like the Hunter 27, even though I like the Catalinas.

I don't understand some of the commentary here. How much boat do they think you can get for $2500? In that price range, condition is your guide. For the money, Catalina and Hunter are decent boats with good online communities and available parts. They're also easy to buy and sell.

As far as rating components, rate sailing, engine, and safety items as most important. Aging cushions you can live with or easily fix, but it doesn't really affect anything.
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Old 09-03-2016, 10:28   #10
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

In my opinion, having an inboard diesel has a lot of advantages if well taken care of even though I do like Catalinas. If you are in a big hurry buy the one that's had the best care.
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Old 09-03-2016, 10:44   #11
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Re: Ranger 29 vs. Catalina 25 vs. Hunter 27

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In my opinion, having an inboard diesel has a lot of advantages if well taken care of even though I do like Catalinas. If you are in a big hurry buy the one that's had the best care.
I agree with this., and an older Cherubini Hunter is form my understanding a different animal than the newer ones
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