[QUOTE=Jeff H;11189]Lets see here, the Avance 33, while a neat boat in many ways, was as super narrow, IOR-1 style design. These are strange boats by any standard.
While they are a more than a bit strange, they are not bad boats. They have an easily driven hull
and an efficient rig and foils, and so offer good sailing ability in light to moderate conditions, but they are a real bear in a breeze. I like their fractional rig and while I am not a big fan of self-tacking jibs, the Avance's is particularly nicely done.
The Bristol 31.1 is the smallest of the series that included the 35.5 and the 38.8. While the 35.5 and 38.8 were very good boats for their day, the 31.1 was a far less successful design. There are certain design concepts that can work well in a certain size range which do not scale down successfully without a lot of adaptation, so much adaptation that the basic design concept is altered. In the case of the 31.1, v in other words a bit of an odd duck.
There are a lot of 'cult boats' out there that demand prices at the low end of rediculously over priced. The reason for cult status are varied but not always reasonable. Across the board I think that Bristol prices tend to be a bit inflated because of the somewhat upscale quality of the later boats. So while they are pricey, a number of the Bristols, the 31.1 are still pretty strange boats.
Sorry to resurrect this older thread but it is the no. 1 result if you Google
search on Bristol 31.1.
I recently bought one and though it would be helpful to do what I did before buying
it : compare it to the Catalina 30
, the most ubiquitous boat in the size range.
The Bristol is heavier (11200 vs 10200), slightly less beamy, slightly longer overall, slightly shorter waterline by an inch or two. However that shorter waterline is due to two seaworthy
features : the full bow and tapered stern. Compared to the C30's PHRF of 180, the Bristol's is 174, so that weight hasn't slowed it down, nor has the increased wetted area - which is due to it having a skeg-mounted rudder
and large keel
(fully encapsulated), two more seaworthy
features. The Bristol has a keel-stepped mast
. Sail area is very similar.
Below it has slightly less space than the C30, but good headroom
. It has fantastic storage
space. I'm 6ft 5 and walk around stood up straight. Can lie straight on the V. The head
is plenty roomy. The main difference is that Bristol did not include any aft berths at all. There's just the V and two doubles in the stateroom.
If you place all sailboats on a scale with full keeled bluewater designs at one end (10), and lightweight racers at the other (1), I would say you have the C30 at a 5 and the Bristol at a 6.5. Whether the data support statements like "wildly overweight, too much wetted area, odd duck" - you decide for yourself.