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Old 14-02-2015, 22:13   #16
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?


Please respond. I am in southern California and can help you find the boat that really fits your needs. See my earlier post signified by the heart at the top.
I really want you to have the right boat for you.

John Hart (CapJack)

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Old 15-02-2015, 00:13   #17
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

Sorry to hear that. I met Ted Irwin in Key West a couple of years ago. Dinner and a long chat, what a fine gentleman he was. Also got a good look at Distant Drummer, his 68' with a Jacuzzi.

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Old 15-02-2015, 00:39   #18
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

Despite no reply from the OP I will post a link to this Irwin 52 review, although 9 years old now. Can be also found from Irwin Yachts - Irwin Sailboats Parts & Manuals.
Hopefully someone will find this helpful.
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Old 15-02-2015, 00:53   #19
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

If this thread is being revived, no harm meant, but the Irwins do not have a good reputatin as sea boats.

Ann & Jim, U.S. s/v Insatiable II, SE Qld, for a while
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Old 25-05-2015, 17:16   #20
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

As a owner of a 52 irwin there are several things to keep In mind. The hull is solid not cored. Having spend 7 yrs now on it I can say I am very confident in its ability. It isn't a swan or a island packet. But I will still take it over most 30!yr boats out there. There is issues that every boat has. If u take the time to properly upfit any boat can be make safe.

I am willing to share my thought if u want more. Is a stock irwin blue water? That depends on your opinion. Is mine. U betcha. 6-10 Ft and 25-40 knots I don't sweat it. But remember the idea is to not sail when it's too bad.

Have I made improvement. Yes. Is every boat capable. No.

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Old 09-08-2015, 09:39   #21
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

Thanks CapJack - been running round with work. We are looking for a boat for a year plus of cruising / at least 55ft +.

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Old 23-08-2015, 06:04   #22
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

At this momento you might have done your choice already, hope you found the one you and your family feel safe and happy...
I own a Irwin 52" Ketch with double furling on the bow, I just can share that I hull out 1 year ago and all was in great shape just sand the bottom and antifoiling, took the opportunity to check the chart and replace the bearings, top sides and deck just needed to polish and small filling in minor scratches. I fall in love with my vessel once I saw it on my brocket website, in my opinion all vessels will have ALWAYS something to fix and that we (passionate owners) want to improve, my self I don't get tired to take care of mine, it's hard sometimes but since reserve always some time for the ones important that's fine, the work can wait for next day, if I don't do it he will be there waiting for me the last owners of my Irwin 52" crossed the Pacific and lived aboard for 8 years, they were very happy (the best years of their life, they told me), they never stop to upgrade and LTC of her, I'm doing the same. If you like your boat race care of it, and you will have a great time of your live, always stop to enjoy the sunset with your family, that's one of the great moments...I recommend Irwin 52", but I know about the hatches, varnish... But that's part of the fun aboard. Cap. Black Jr.
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Old 23-08-2015, 06:52   #23
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

Lots of good opinions, of course with both extremes represented...


Good luck with the search... I would take chapjack up on is offer to help!

And chapjack... your new hobby seems to be matchmaking... Here's one of my boats available in case you run across somebody that she fits... Lowered to 14.5k or there abouts... There's a few bucks in it for ya iffin' ya do...
33' Morgan Out Island (warrior)-RELISTED
In the harsh marine environment, something is always in need of repair...

Mai Tai's fix everything...
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Old 23-08-2015, 13:09   #24
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

Originally Posted by Miguel Ketch View Post
just sand the bottom and antifoiling,
OK, that typo made me laugh out loud.

The Irwins are solid family cruisers, but I don't think they are quite fast enough to need extra steps to keep them from foiling...
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Old 11-03-2016, 16:17   #25

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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?

I read the replies to your query. An interesting range of opinions. Here's mine. The choice of boat is a direct function of the kind of sailing that you anticipate doing. For example, if you are planning expeditionary cruising in the Antarctic an Irwin 52 is a bad idea. On the other hand if you are doing caribbean down island cruising, an Irwin 52 is a wonderful choice. You will find Irwin 52s in all regions of the world, United States East and West Coasts, Carribean, South America, Europe/Mediterranean, Far East/Thailand, New Zealand, Australia, etc. In my book this geographical disbursement is a pretty good endorsement of the boats, particularly in light of the aging of the Irwin 52 fleet in the world. As in all boats you will find a range of conditions, from floating wrecks to Bristol perfect. Accordingly, the seaworthiness of these boats are a direct function of how well the boat has been maintained. Keep in mind that the Irwin boats, especially the larger ones (52's, 54's, 65's, 68's) were designed by a world class racing sailor, Ted Irwin, who had a gift for designing roomy, comfortable, safe, and fast boats that were relatively easy to handle. In fact, he started the big boat salon revolution leaving his design imprint on boats still being built today. One thing is absolutely certain, you will be hard pressed to find a more roomy and comfortable fast sailor for the typical cost of an Irwin 52 and is perfect for short-handed cruising or a family of 5. If you want to see a pedigree Irwin 52 that has been upgraded to current boat standards I direct you to This boat is gorgeous and while a bit pricey is still orders of magnitude cheaper than comparable new boats being sold today.
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Old 12-03-2016, 09:07   #26
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Re: Irwin 52 - any good for family cruising?


I love the big Irwins (I grew up on a 54'). But for all their advantages the one thing I can say with absolute certainty is they are not fast. Strong as all get out, able to take hard groundings and massive punishment, sure. And in a stiff breeze on a reach they can manage a decent turn of speed... But they go upwind terribly and because of their massive beam, high weight, and short masts, they are never going to win a race.

I wouldn't even blink about taking one across an ocean. Their poor reputation was founded on a few boats that had massive delamination problems out of the factory. But at this point any issues have either been corrected or the boats junked.


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