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Old 16-04-2011, 13:26   #31
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Hi all,

I'm a Westsail 32 owner, and generally a supporter of Westsails. However, I do not care for the W28; it was not designed by a naval architect as the Westsail Corp. would have you think. Essentially, Westsail Corp took a Westsail 32 mold and cut four feet out of the middle, creating the W28 for those who wanted a smaller, cheaper "ocean" boat. The lines are a little funny because of it, and I think they lack some of the spunk Crealock designed into the Dreadnaught/W32 (Not to get in to the "Westsnail" or "Wetsnail" argument, but the W32 can really move if you know how to get it to do so!).

In general, the quality finish construction of the Baba 30 is better than the W28, although Westsail has a better reputation in terms of osmosis and laminate issues. The Baba is a better quality boat, IMO. I find the side decks of the W28 to be cramped; they let the cabin bulge to help it feel big, but more side deck would be preferred. The Baba has wider decks, but inboard chainplates that get in the way. I suggest spending some time on both boats walking around - see if you can go sailing, if you're a serious buyer, and feel which you're more comfortable with.

Here is a list of things to look out for with those specific boats.

W28
  • Chainplates, tangs, bobstay tang; check for cracks radiating out from the bolt holes. Have they been replaced? On the W28, the plates are easy to replace (and can be bought from Bud Taplin). The Baba 30 is a different beast.
  • Water tank; has it been replaced? If not, any sign of leaks? If so, it is a BEAR to replace! The stainless tank was installed, then a fiberglass liner put over it, so you have to cut the sole out.
  • Fuel tank; Any sign of leaking? Same problem! Liner is on top and you have to cut it out, and it's under a quarter birth.
  • Have the caprails been properly cared for, or have they been sanded thin? In general, WS didn't countersink screws far enough, so if they CR has been sanded to less than 3/4" (originally was 1", or 5/4 thickness), bungs start to come out and one develops annoying leaks in the rail. The swoops at the front and aft are a nuisance to duplicate.
  • Bud Taplin can still provide parts made to Westsail specs for the boat, which is a big perk
  • Installing a windvane is very easy, and cheaper.
Baba 30 - I don't know many specifics, but remember a few legacy issues
  • thru-deck chainplates - these develop issues on many boats, but the Babas and Tayanas have a reputation for chainplate issues.
  • steering quadrant/rudder play - good thing to check in ANY boat
  • signs of rot at cranse iron - It's a teak bowsprit, so many owners think it's OK to ignore it.
  • bobstay tang - has it had a good zinc on it?
  • mast step for compression
  • Repainting these boats is tedious because of the fake grooves.


All of that said, I think it is vastly more important to consider the two specific boat's individual quirks, problems, needs, etc. more than their name. 30+ years out from the manufacturer, the inventory, the extent of POMS (previous owner modification syndrome), and the quality of upkeep. Also, which do you like more? I think the Baba 30 is prettier.

Lastly, check out the Westsail Owners Association website (WOA Home page). Post your question there for some feedback from W28 and other Westsail owners. WOA is pretty active, which is another perk for owning that boat.

Good luck!
Aaron
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Old 16-04-2011, 14:30   #32
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Blahman:
That is very interesting and I am inclined to think you are right. Thanks for that.
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Old 16-04-2011, 15:06   #33
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

BABA 30 Sailboat details on sailboatdata.com
WESTSAIL 28 Sailboat details on sailboatdata.com

Westsail is a lot shorter on sail area for her displacement.

On the other hand, the transom hung rudder is a lot easier to maintain, and if you wanted to home brew a trimtab wind vane you could do so.

My stepmother's father had a Baba that he'd taken to Oz I believe and I helped him prep to sell after. I liked the layout and headroom and the side decks were OK as I recall.
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Old 16-04-2011, 15:58   #34
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Quote:
Originally Posted by blahman View Post
Hi all,

(...) Essentially, Westsail Corp took a Westsail 32 mold and cut four feet out of the middle, creating the W28 for those who wanted a smaller, cheaper "ocean" boat. (...)
Sure, they also cut the mold lengthwise and removed some 1'5'' of the beam, then they cut what was left horizontally and removed some 8 inches of draft.

...

I have seen a W28 up close and personal and she looked nothing like what you suggested.

b.
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Old 16-04-2011, 16:25   #35
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

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I have always thought the Westsail 28 was a very poor design.
The pudgy little Baba 30 will surprise you with it's performance.
What was wrong in W28 design?

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Old 16-04-2011, 17:46   #36
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

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I have seen a W28 up close and personal and she looked nothing like what you suggested.
I had a discussion with Bud Taplin concerning this when we were looking for a Westsail (and looking at W28s). He was in charge of production when they brought the 28 into existence. They modified one of the first W32 molds as it was considerably cheaper to modify a mold than to have a new one built from scratch.

All of the work was done in-house, as were all of the hull layups (it was after they had taken over layups from Crystaliner). They did make new deck mold. The rig was scaled from the W32, and the interior designed by one of the Westsail Corp. builders. No BS!

Cheers,
Aaron
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Old 16-04-2011, 17:57   #37
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Quote:
Originally Posted by blahman View Post
Hi all,

Essentially, Westsail Corp took a Westsail 32 mold and cut four feet out of the middle, creating the W28 for those who wanted a smaller, cheaper "ocean" boat.
Just a little more info regarding Aaron's comments about my beloved W28 Clementine.
Aaron's difficulties navigating the side decks most likely were because he is 6'3 or maybe 6'4 inches tall. I am 5'9" and although I have to lean when passing by the center shroud, I get around fine.

Aaron knows far more than I ever will about boats as I am a recent first-time boat owner, but it's my understanding that in addition to having a shallower draft than a W32 it has somewhat of a cut away forefoot thereby improving maneuverability over the full keel of a W32. Peace Aaron
Eric
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Old 16-04-2011, 18:02   #38
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Quote:
Originally Posted by blahman View Post
I had a discussion with Bud Taplin concerning this when we were looking for a Westsail (and looking at W28s). He was in charge of production when they brought the 28 into existence. They modified one of the first W32 molds as it was considerably cheaper to modify a mold than to have a new one built from scratch.

All of the work was done in-house, as were all of the hull layups (it was after they had taken over layups from Crystaliner). They did make new deck mold. The rig was scaled from the W32, and the interior designed by one of the Westsail Corp. builders. No BS!

Cheers,
Aaron
Well, all the above sounds like much more than 'cut four feet out of the middle'.

I know they built some, then added ballast. There must be some 'under-ballasted' ones on the market then.

b.
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Old 16-04-2011, 23:37   #39
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

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Well, all the above sounds like much more than 'cut four feet out of the middle'.
I meant it only to be brief. Also, I don't mean that the W28 is a "bad" boat, nor that it can't sail well, just that its lines and overall design lack some of the finesse of boats through-designed by architects. The shipwrights who created the W28 out of W32 molds obviously had knew what they were doing; they're strong boats, are well constructed and have crossed all the oceans. Dollar for dollar, they are a LOT of boat.

Eric,

Yes, my height is a prime reason the W28's deck feels tight, and my father's belly precluded his maneuvering around. The W32 is a much better fit for us. But both boats are fine

Cheers,
Aaron
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Old 17-04-2011, 10:50   #40
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Barn:
The bond that we have with our boats is far beyond any opinion I would have. I bought my boat after my wife fell in love with it. It's Peter Norlin design. After the deal was sealed I ran the numbers on the boat and I was shocked by the low SA/D. But after ten years I can tell you that while the SA/D is low I have never had a reef in the main.

Enjoy your boat.
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Old 17-04-2011, 11:37   #41
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob perry View Post
Barn:
The bond that we have with our boats is far beyond any opinion I would have.
This is so very true. I've heard many Westsail owners who are very passionate about their boats.

One their biggest design flaws may be the way transliteration can be applied to the the name? Forever doomed.
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Old 17-04-2011, 12:47   #42
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob perry View Post
Barn:
The bond that we have with our boats is far beyond any opinion I would have. I bought my boat after my wife fell in love with it. It's Peter Norlin design. After the deal was sealed I ran the numbers on the boat and I was shocked by the low SA/D. But after ten years I can tell you that while the SA/D is low I have never had a reef in the main.

Enjoy your boat.
So, we both have Norlins' boats, except mine is not Peter's.

Yes, I think it is important to have a boat one likes. Then again I am not christian, so I do not see any sin in desiring other men's boats ;-)

I like W28, I have not sailed the one I looked up in NZ because the owner flew back to the US. But she looked every inch a proper boat and very well built.

I am not certain SA/D alone tells how well a boat will sail. I have the feeling that how the D is distributed adds a very interesting twist to the displacement story. Also, SA is only good if talking two identical or nearly identical hulls. Otherwise the SA can be arranged in so many different ways and not all of them are equal. So, in a word, I would believe some boats with 'worse' SA/D will sail much better - faster or more comfortably (or both) than some other boats with 'better' SA/D.

But, sure, I am not a designer. I am a user.

b.
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Old 17-04-2011, 13:44   #43
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Barns:
I think you had better sail a W28 before you jump on one. Make sure you can live comfortably with that degree of performance.
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Old 17-04-2011, 16:04   #44
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

Concerning both boats, I gotta say, they look cute. Kinda like a first girlfriend, good for the experience...for both of you. But usually doesn't last, except for that rare exception. You never know until you ask her out.
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Old 17-04-2011, 16:26   #45
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Re: Westsail 28 Vs Baba 30

I've never sailed a WS28, but Hal Roth who use to own my current boat had a strong opinion about them (post #32) ...FWIW ...How 'Slow' Is a West Sail 28 ?
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