Anathema, I owned a Siren in the 1970's and can say that they are a great beginner's boat. I should, however, correct one of your misconceptions: she is not a keel boat, but rather a centerboarder (and although the manufacturer, Vandestadt and McGruer, claimed that the cast iron board, if bolted in the down position, made her self-righting - at only 140 pounds I wouldn't want to test it).
They were well built, easy to rig and sail, had reasonable performance,a large and comfortable cockpit
and four berths - although the quarter berths lack adequate headroom
for an adult to even lay sideways. Indeed, the cabin
itself lacks proper sitting headroom
and the amenities are better suited for daysails: for example, the icebox
provides space for a bag of cubes and about 6 beer
, and the head
is really only a molded in bucket with a hose attached to the deck
for a pumpout.
The price seems reasonable and, so long as your expectations are not too high, she will be a great daysailor/occasional overnighter for you and your family
. I would also commmend the Sandpiper 565, mentioned by Sailorman, as another option: designed in England
, she has proper sitting headroom and slightly better performance.
Finally another couple of options to consider in Canadian-built boats, for only a little more money
, would be the CS 22 and Tanzer 22. Equally well built, but with much more space and performance.