My wife and I have spent the better part of a year researching potential vessels for purchase
. We plan to spend most of our time exploring the Chesapeake Bay
, perhaps a few trips up and down the coasts, and eventually an offshore vacation
or two towards Bermuda
(say over a 5 year period). We currently have one small child (< 2 years old) and are considering another. Our primary criteria are safety
, comfort, and reliability
. There might be some very casual around the buoys racing
but I've gotten most of my competitive sailing out on J/22s and Sonars. We love to sail and plan to spend lots of time at anchor
and not sitting in a marina slip. We are currently considering vessels between 33'-35' at less than $100k (preferably around $50-$60k). With one or two little ones, we feel that the 33'-35' size ranges is large enough to be comfortable but small enough that one person can handle the vessel when necessary. My wife really wants two enclosed cabins so the kids
have their own area. I really like the idea of a modified fin keel
and a skeg on the rudder
. Since we plan to do some offshore
work, solid glass below the waterline seems important and an encapsulated keel
is attractive (but not a dealbreaker if bolt-on).
Since this is unlikely to be our only boat as we are young and our kids
will grow, resale is important. As such we are leaning towards older, "higher-quality" boats that have the potential to retain their resale value. I have no illusions of a boat as an investment but mitigating monetary risk is important. Also, I understand there is no perfect boat and that everything is a tradeoff.
I've spent many hours pouring over data in spreadsheets, ratios, etc. We've tried to look at as many boats as possible to get an idea of what we like and don't like. Nothing is set in stone, but we are leaning heavily towards the Caliber line of sailboats, specifically the 33/35. Also high on the list are the Tartan 3500, Ericson
34 or 38, and the Pearson
36 (no centerboard). I've looked at non-US made boats like the Hallberg-Rassys but they are simply too hard to find (and the teak
decks scare me). As for age, we are looking at early 1990s maybe late 1980s. So with all that said, I thought I would tap into the expertise on this board with a few questions:
1. As for the Calibers, my biggest worry is sailing ability with the somewhat heavy displacement
in the light air of the Chesapeake Bay
. Also, I like a boat that points reasonably, and I am worried about upwind performance. If things get ugly and I need to get away from a shorline, I want to be able to get their without firing up the engine
. Also, we don't want to spend all of our time motoring. From what I've read, it sounds like big genoa's and a asymmetric spinnaker
should help mitigate the heavy displacement
. Is a Caliber simply not the right boat for the Chesapeake?
2. As for the Tartans, are they core'd below the waterline? I am worried about buying
an older boat that isn't solid glass. Should I be worried about this on the Tartan's or other boats?
3. Another concern with the Caliber's is resale. There don't seem to be many of them. I've read that most of them sell outside of Yachtworld and other brokers.
4. Are there other considerations that I should be thinking about that I am missing?