Hi You all and greetings from Finland!
I've been a member
of this group for awhile but not an active one... So here's my contribution to this great forum. One of the best I've ever visited!
I've been sailing all my life; started with dinghies and bought my first 24" keel
boat at the age of 26. It was right after I've finished my studies and a dream come true at that time. Of course it was deeply against my parents will... but my (then becoming) wife accepted it. I deeply appreciate her broadminded acceptance.
Years passed by and after gaining a lot of experience of restoring old boats to a condition like new I was facing a big question - should I stay with my current
Yacht, or is it finally time to buy the dream Yacht? I chose the dream Yacht after I my 50'th birthday had just passed by.
Yacht has offered me more than I could ask for, thousands of trouble free miles with my family
and some Yachting also singlehanded. From Finland
and back etc. It was a great yacht and in very capable hands after selling her one year ago. I was looking for an Avance 40, designed by S&S and made in Finland
quite near the Nautor Yard. After being not successful in my search I broadened it a bit and started looking for a looked after classic Swan with graceful lines and sailing capabilities above the standard.
There were some for sale
here in Finland and in Germany
but their condition was, should I say, challenging. At ClassicSwan.org I finally found the most proper one available. It was a S&S Swan 431 with all the new rigging
(new rods, dyneema
ropes), new sails
, new teak
, propshaft, el.windlass, ... etc. Her awlgripped hull
shines like new and after a very careful survey
(*) I decided to leave an offer which was soon accepted.
(*) I've been a surveyor
at the yacht Club level for over 2 decades.
We live in Finland and the Yacht CAID is located in Italy
near Venice. I did'n find the distance as a big problem, just have to spend on the road a bit more (20 hours...) when traveling to do the spring preparations. I was there twice during the spring and spent some 20 very long days doing the next installations with a friend of mine (Juhani is also a S&S Swan owner): new electrical Lewmar
ST54:s were installed to serve as primaries, new ST30 for the main sheets
, Victron Phoenix 50A/1200W charger/pure sine-inverter, new Pioneer stereos and subwoofers with support to iPhone
and other iDevices, Raymarine
Class B, Sailor VHF
, etc, etc...
After two and a half months of cruising at the Adriatic
I was very pleased to find out that I actually made the right decision. The Yacht sails
like a dream in a lightest of winds, which was a surprise after she's quite a heavy Yacht. She' very stiff (50% at the keel) and handles very well in the rougher weather
too. We did'nt have more than 30...40 knots of head wind
but with two reef at the radial main and some rolls at the 3DL genua she was sailed with one hand at the steering wheel
with confidence. This was a huge difference in the Yacht's behavior compared to my previous more modern Yachts. But I was happy with them also and didn't know of this kind of handling capabilities the Swan offers.
My advice to You having similar dreams of classics: Buy it now, but only the best one You find and afford!
Here are some Youtube clips of our cruises from the last summer.