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Old 18-10-2010, 14:12   #1
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Small Trailer Sailer / Little Pocket Cruiser

As you can probably tell from the question, I am a relative newcomer to sailing (though I sailed a lot of Sunfish as a teen-ager) and to this website. Is there anyone on here who has had experience sailing the Vagabond 17, also known as the Holder 17? From my (inexperienced) perspective, it seems to have many of the features we are looking for--trailerable, lightweight, option to stay on board for a night or two. Any other similar size/weight boats you would recommend over this one? Thanks, Lynn
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Old 18-10-2010, 14:48   #2
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I like the Compac line although I have very little experience with the Vagabond 17.
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Old 20-10-2010, 15:48   #3
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I've actually been using a Vagabond 17 for local sailing for years.

I find it very easy to rig, launch and retrieve. I find it more forgiving than many boats in it size range (not too tender). It sails reasonably well, but is not the sharpest tacking boat i've ever seen. I don't like that the mainsheet attaches off center on the rear transom. It has proven to be very low maintenance.

Personally, for overnight use, I'd pick something a bit bigger that is still easy to trailer such as the West Wight Potter. The cabin space is very cramped on the Vagabond.

Overall, I think it's a good boat, but if you want to spend nights aboard, I think you'll be happier to get something with more cabin space.
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Old 20-10-2010, 16:13   #4
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Nautical, thanks so much for your response. When I posted initially, I did not realize that the Vagabond 17/Holder 17 is out of production. I have not located any for sale within a reasonable driving distance of PA. I do appreciate your feedback that the cabin is very small. Though I tent camped in my younger days, I am getting soft, and like some creature comforts! I will look into the West Wight Potter, and also the Com-Pac boats.
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Old 30-10-2010, 07:44   #5
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Check out http://www.msogphotosite.com/. These boats were all designed by Lyle Hess who came up with some of the most amazing pocket cruisers like the Nor'Sea 27, Falmouth Cutter and the Bristol Channel Cutter (BCC28).
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Old 30-10-2010, 10:42   #6
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Mabe somethig like this

I drew this for myself as a pocket cruiser.
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Old 02-11-2010, 16:04   #7
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MacGregors

I like the MacGregor 26X that we have at present for all the requirements that you have listed. Before that we owned a 19' West Wight Potter that is also a good trailer sailor.

Our blog at pacificsailors.com has posts of many of our adventures.

Mike
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Old 02-11-2010, 17:56   #8
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RL24. Huge cockpit. great for weekends and Light enough to tow without an SUV.

Cheers
Oz
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Old 02-11-2010, 20:25   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnandBob View Post
As you can probably tell from the question, I am a relative newcomer to sailing (though I sailed a lot of Sunfish as a teen-ager) and to this website. Is there anyone on here who has had experience sailing the Vagabond 17, also known as the Holder 17? From my (inexperienced) perspective, it seems to have many of the features we are looking for--trailerable, lightweight, option to stay on board for a night or two. Any other similar size/weight boats you would recommend over this one? Thanks, Lynn

I sail a 24 foot trailer sailer. In deciding what boat you want I would consider the hull design, weight, and ballast relative to where you are planning to sail. Other than the keel my boat has more of a planing type hull (it is flat on the bottom). It has a stationary shallow draft (not full) keel that contains a swing keel inside - about 12 inches deep. Her draft with keel up is less than 2 feet, with keel down, 4 feet. I love the boat. She is solid and sound, lots of thick fiberglass, comfortable interior, and easy to sail in light air. The key here are the words light air. I have put her in the Gulf of Mexico or its bays many times only to return early because the wind and or waves got to be too much. Her hull shape makes her super light on the water - she doesn't dig in at all. She will sail in wind so light that you can hardly feel it on your skin (everyone else is in port or motoring), but she can be very hard to handle under any amount of sail in wind as light as 15mph. She sits on top of the water so much that she is more easily pushed around by the wind, and loves a good heel. When waves or chop hit her she rides up and slams down the back side of them (more than a light chop or 1 foot waves is too much). If she had more of a "V" under her hull, she would cut through the waves and chop more and slam less. She weighs 2400lbs of which 1000lbs are ballast. She can be a blast to sail in light air or in the fickle winds on the lake where she now resides, but if I am planning to stay out on the gulf or bay for more than 2 days, I want a heavier boat with more of a "v" shape to the hull minimum.

Just food for thought.
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Old 03-11-2010, 15:53   #10
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Thanks all! Aquarian, thank you for all that information about hull shape and design. I'm sure we will learn a lot from folks on this site. We bought a Vagabond 14 that we found a great deal on. We figured it would be a great learning boat, and also give us time to figure out where we will do most of our sailing, which is certainly related to what type of boat would best suit our needs. We have only had a chance to sail our new (old) boat once and it was fun, but it also revealed to us that our old knees will require a deeper cockpit and more comfortable seating in the long run. We will need to decide whether we want something quick and easy to launch on the local (lakeside) launch ramps (which also tend to be shallow) or something larger and more comfortable that we will take down to the Chesapeake. Looking forward to a lot more learning and sailing! Lynn
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Old 05-11-2010, 16:24   #11
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If you can tow about 3500 lbs. A Cape Dory 22 is a small go anywhere boat.
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