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Old 03-11-2011, 18:28   #46
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

Just to chime in here again, we just went to Hunter Marine in Alachua Florida where the Hunters are built and took a factory tour (highly recommended btw). An amazing system they have. Of course hit very hard by the economy with a very slowed production, but they have learned many lessons over their years of production. Even their wet testing has changed a lot. I wouldn't mind buying another one at all. Greatly enjoyed scoping out the 50 footer they were working on...*drool* Also, apparently (for those it may matter to) Hunters and Catalina's are the only production sailboats built in the U.S. (I haven't double verified but wouldn't surprise me). I think many have hit the nail on the head in this thread with the bottom line of affordability, purpose, and overall bang for the buck. Doing a basic search there are a ton of Hunters out there....I'm thrilled- means more chance for parts and advice Neat history to both boat production lines...we got our boat because we could afford it, looked HOT, and interior was comfortable, functional, and beautiful. Agree with others- get what you can and DO IT!
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Old 03-11-2011, 19:48   #47
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

We have been living on our 2004 Hunter 44DS in the BVI for 19 months. Been through a hurricane, and three squalls with winds gusting over 50 mph. No sweat. Love the boat. Also sailed it from Tampa to St. Simons Island, GA then from Georgia to the BVI. All kinds of weather, day and night. No regrets.
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Old 03-11-2011, 19:59   #48
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by ozskipper View Post
I have spent time on two small Hunters. One was on a 31 foot boat -delivery from melbourne oz to Sydney via Bass Strait. The other was on a legend 335- delivery from Townsville to Hamilton Island (Whitsundays) then raced for a week then returned.

The experience on the 31 was somewhat scary. It was a new boat. We were caught in a typical Bass Strait blow with 45knots of puff and an opposing current. The waves were standing up and we chose to turn and run. We spent the next 36hours on a broad reach with a 3rd reef in the main and no headsail. The boat sailed very well and at no time did we feel like it was going to let us down

We did however, have serious problems with the new yanmar and the radio. Air got into the fuel system and I remember saying to myself that I never want to bleed another at sea ever again. Everything took 5 times as long as it would at a marina. Its not the engines fault that there was air in the system. We still can only guess how it got there. The radio issue is a long one- I wont bore you now.

The delivery on the 335 was fantastic. Typical Queensland sunshine and 15-20 knots SE of breeze. We were racing at a regatta at Hamilton Island, one of the more well known isles in the whitsunday group. We had four men sleeping on board. We were all comfy and had our own "space" at night.

Performance wise, the legend 335 suffers from windage around the marina. Its freeboard is quite high for a little boat. But the winged keel certainly helps the boat going to windard.

All that freeboard means more space inside. There are few production boats with as much room as this boat. This boat had a backstay. It aslo has a very tall rig. 50+feet from memory. All that sail area meant we could give a mighty challenge to bigger boats. It was a nice feeling to sail past a 40 foot beneteau.

I am considering a Hunter myself at the moment. So I am more that interested in hearing any negatives as well.

Cheers
Oz
This is a great review. Thanks mate.
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Old 03-11-2011, 20:13   #49
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by sequitur View Post
Sitting here in Puerto Montt, Patagonia in our Hunter 49 and reading through this thread is rather amusing. Around me in the yard and in the marina preparing for yet another run down to Cape Horn or Antarctica, or popping back over for another season in South Georgia or heading back to New Zealand or carrying on to Easter Island and Polynesia, are Beneteaux, Catalinas and Hunters, along with a wonderfully eclectic collection of home-builds in wood, steel and glass and a smattering of little-known European brands. Absent are the classic US-centric concept of bluewater boats. We haven't seen a Halberg Rassy, a Pacific Seacraft or a Valiant since we left the protected waters of the Sea of Cortez nearly two years ago.

I think I'll just sit back and let the arm-chair sailors entertain us.
+ freakin' 1 seq!
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Old 04-11-2011, 16:21   #50
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Originally Posted by duncan_ellison
OK, here is some real experience rather than the "I looked at a Hunter once and I thought it was a piece of junk" posts we seem to get here.

We are now 6 months into cruising on our 2006 Hunter 45CC which we have owned for 2 1/2 years.

We have thoughts to do some real long distance cruising in this boat at some time, so I have gone over it in very fine detail and know just about every aspect of its construction.

When considering which boat to buy, we looked at all the major European manufacturers including the more recent entrants into the production boat market from Poland and former east Germany and kept coming back to the Hunter. Reasons ?

1: Sheer value for money
2: The finish was as good and in most cases better than the competition
3: The layout for a cruising couple couldn't be matched by any of the competion who then to design boats for the lease / charter market so they can get at least 6 people on each boat.

Here is some of the truth about this boat :

a) It points to wind as well as any other boat except for an out and out racer.

b) The B&R rig, although it freaks people out, is perfectly OK from a stability point of view. However it does limit your downwind ability a bit.

We are comfortable running with the main against the spreaders in light airs as the main is carefully matched to the rig with heavy duty patches where it touches and I haven't detected any wear issues yet.

For longer passages downwind we have a spinaker (parasailor) which solves this issue.

The B&R rig is fron Selden of Sweden, one of the world's most respected spar manufacturers. Going by the contact I have had with Selden, they are the most picky people imaginable and if there was the slightest chance that this rig design would damage their reputation, they would not sell it.

c) The in mast furling can be a bear as it does jam occasionally (not recently as we've now figured out why) but I cannot imagine a two handed crew reefing such a large conventional main.

d) The hardware is all from Harken, Selden & Lewmar all highly respected names at the top of their game.

e) The hull contruction is slightly unconventional (separate floor pan, structurally bonded to the hull), but is no less bad for that. The boat is stiff and handles well in heavy weather (our worst conditions so far have been 10 - 12 ft seas and 30Kn winds). Contrary to other posts, the necessary parts of the gid pan ARE tabbed into the hull as well as being chemically bonded with large amounts of plexus.

The keel is a solid antimous lead casting fixed with an adequate number of large stainless bolts. I have the shoal draft version and it sails adequately well plus it allows me to transit the ICW without problems.

The hull layup is solid and thick below the waterline with Kevlar from bow to keel, I have no concerns in this area.

f) I have no idea why some people seem to think the trademark Hunter 'arch' is a problem to them. To me, it is one of the best features of the boat. Not only does it provide an excellent place to attach hardware (traveller etc), it is an excellent safety feature ("Stay within the arch, you won't (can't) get hit").

g) Interior layout is great, there is no lack of handholds as others have reported. The Admiral loves it and IMHO, Hunter marketing have done a great job of designing the interior to appeal to both halves of a cruising couple.

Some people will never allow that because the carpentry was done in seconds on a CAD /CAM machine and 5 time-served carpenters haven't sweated blood over every fixture that it can't be a 'real boat'. The simple fact is that Hunter can provide value for money by reducing the labor costs in this area and the result is perfectly acceptable if you can see past this.

We'd all like an IP, a Sweden Yacht or an Oyster, but I'd rather be sailing in my Hunter than saving forever for something I can't afford.

f) Surprisingly, perhaps, my biggest bugbear with the boat is the cabin sole. Hunter chose to use an "Everwear" teak / holly laminate which is too thin (1/2") There are way too many inspection cut outs which are great for maintenance, but IMO should have been more intelligently combined into bigger floor sections and made from a thicker material.

There is no provision to lock down the panels, I'm having to add PYI floor locks to each panel, which is an expensive pain.

Plus each panel has a finger lift hole which just encourages dust and rubbish to make it's way into the bilges.

At the Annapolis boat show, I see that the larger 2010 boats now have a very solid 1" wood flooring, I assume they've now learned from experience here.

g) For a true offshore boat, my major concern was with the rudder system. The massive balanced spade rudder from Foss Foam is very effective and the Lewmar shaft steering is very responsive, but to me represents an issue if I were to hit something solid whilst offshore.

For this reason, I have acquired a complete emergency rudder system from Hunter. Considering the fabrication work involved, this was very reasonably priced and can be stored in pieces on the boat in the lazarette. It can be assembled in about 5 minutes and provides a complete back up able to steer the boat in most conditions. Problem solved.

I would also point out that most of Hunter's recent line of boats undergo stringent testing so they can comply with the European Recreational Craft Directive (RCD) or "CE" mark, whilst not a perfect standard, it gives a buyer some measure of the conditions the boat is designed to withstand (Class A- Ocean / Class B - Coastal etc.).

Like most things in boating, it's all personal choice. Some would never be happy with a Hunter just because it's a 'production' boat. Others, like me, get past that and go sailing in a reasonably well built boat that they can afford.

Duncan
S/V TALISA
Love the answer. I printed it for the next time someone says they don't like Hunter

We also have a Hunter 45 (2000) and have many miles now going into Sea of Cortez Mexico & back plus we are always out even (Channel islands/Santa Barbara/ San Diego) though I am back teaching. We had spreader boots put on before leaving & have had no wear. We had our sails in for cleaning & repair-mostly wear on UV covers and hunter logo coming off. Other than that they were good shape -just dirty! We have been in bad storms with 45 kt winds & 20+ seas & she handled it great. Nothing was ajar- doors closed same as before. The one surprise was how heavy she was when we had her on the lift on the hard-34000 lbs with generator but little fuel & water-definitely not what brochure says. Thanks again for the thought that went into the answer!
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Old 04-11-2011, 19:08   #51
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

All you Hunter lovers keep this up and you might start a revolution.
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Old 04-11-2011, 20:17   #52
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

The only thing that I've read that sounded real is that tankage might be inadequate. Is it in fact adequate? I didn't read any of you guys that have a Hunter complaining about it.
I have a very thick very solid very heavy very salty full keeled cruiser and I gotta tell you, there are things about Hunters that I admire, especially that arch.
Oh yeah, and that lack of wood to varnish, that looks good too.
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Old 04-11-2011, 21:08   #53
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by sww914 View Post
The only thing that I've read that sounded real is that tankage might be inadequate. Is it in fact adequate? I didn't read any of you guys that have a Hunter complaining about it.
Sequitur's diesel tanks hold 840 litres (that's 222 US gallons to the metrically impaired) and her water tankage is 560 litres (148 gallons). These seem adequate for my purposes.
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Old 05-11-2011, 05:50   #54
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by Sailor g View Post
The one surprise was how heavy she was when we had her on the lift on the hard-34000 lbs with generator but little fuel & water-definitely not what brochure says.
Probably a waterlogged core
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Old 05-11-2011, 05:54   #55
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by sww914 View Post
The only thing that I've read that sounded real is that tankage might be inadequate. Is it in fact adequate? I didn't read any of you guys that have a Hunter complaining about it.
I have a very thick very solid very heavy very salty full keeled cruiser and I gotta tell you, there are things about Hunters that I admire, especially that arch.
Oh yeah, and that lack of wood to varnish, that looks good too.

Water tank is only 20 gal. When I was going to Key West I just put lots of extra jugs on board for drinking. You'd have to put a water maker on to cross the ocean.

But that would probably be a good idea anyway.

Hunters were intended to be fast AND comfortable. I think that's one reason tanks are smaller.
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Old 05-11-2011, 05:55   #56
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
All you Hunter lovers keep this up and you might start a revolution.

IMO only a snob would look his nose down on a Hunter. A local sailor here won PHRF Boat of the Year several years ago in a 1985 31' Hunter.

Yes, with swept-back spreaders. He made better speed jybing downwind than slower boats did running.
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Old 05-11-2011, 05:57   #57
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sww914 View Post
The only thing that I've read that sounded real is that tankage might be inadequate. Is it in fact adequate? I didn't read any of you guys that have a Hunter complaining about it.
I have a very thick very solid very heavy very salty full keeled cruiser and I gotta tell you, there are things about Hunters that I admire, especially that arch.
Oh yeah, and that lack of wood to varnish, that looks good too.

Oh I meant to say that 20' water tank is on a 31' Hunter. The person looking at the 33' Cherubini should check that out carefully, because it seems to me that some tanks were really very small. I seem to recall a 6 gal. holding tank.
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Old 05-11-2011, 05:59   #58
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
Probably a waterlogged core

Any surveyor that wouldn't spot that should be, oh, say,a truck driver -- anything but a marine surveyor.
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:18   #59
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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IMO only a snob would look his nose down on a Hunter.

I hope that since you quoted me when you said this that you aren't suggesting I'm the snob.

Far as tanks, mine has 150-gal of water and 50-gal of fuel. I would guess Hunter's tankage is going to be like other brands for the size of the model.
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:29   #60
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Re: What Makes the Hunter a Coastal Cruiser ?

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Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
I hope that since you quoted me when you said this that you aren't suggesting I'm the snob.

Far as tanks, mine has 150-gal of water and 50-gal of fuel. I would guess Hunter's tankage is going to be like other brands for the size of the model.

I'm just very protective of my Hunter. Ford and Chevvy made cars available to most people. Hunter did the same thing, but I think they did it very well. For instance, my 1983 doesn't have a single deck-to-hull leak -- ANYWHERE. All original windows, and only one of them leaks.

I have seen a Cherubini of the same vintage that had a serious leak around chainplates, though ...
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