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Old 14-04-2021, 04:16   #1
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Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

I've been researching boats for a while now as in a year or two I'll be buying a boat to base in the med for spending a couple of months at a time on. I'm reasonably experienced having sailed since childhood, have chartered, and have done a couple of Offshore passages on an Oyster and a fair bit of racing.

Not sure of the budget yet, it will be €100k - €200k for a 44-50ft boat with good performance but easily managed with two. I had come to the conclusion that I should be looking at boats less than 20 years old.

I do include on my shortlist production boats like the Briand First 45&50 regatta's, & Jeanneau 49i performance. However having read of mild steel backing plates for stanchions on the Jeanneau's, I'm concerned that the materials used on these boats are considerably lower quality than those on older lower volume boats such as X-yachts, Wauquiez, Grand Soleil etc. The X-482, (Most X-yachts fall down on tankage) Wauquiez Centurion 45S & Grand Soleil 46.3, (J&V regatta) & J&J 45 & 50 are on my list. As are the Comet 45 & 51S, (thanks @pollux). The Elan GT5 and Wauquiez 47PS are out of range at present.

However at the bottom end of the budget I'm interested in your views on the pro's and cons of the older Frer's designed Grand Soleil's and Dubois Wauquiez, even Baltics and Sweden's etc. It's well established that the build quality re: fixtures and fittings is higher on these 90's boats although hull construction technology has moved on and Elans, Salona's & Comets would arguably have stronger & much lighter hulls than these boats of more premium brands of the time. A light spacious interior is of greatest importance to my partner as would easy access to the water via twin helms. Not an option with the 90's boats, however, looks are important too, especially as I am a designer. These boats, especially the Frer's designs just look 'right' and in my experience sail very well, (my father had a GS42). The con's would also be heavier boats with much bigger rigs and sail plans less easily managed short-handed. Teak decks that would have to be replaced, I know they can be unbearably hot in the sun but these boats just don't look right without them. Darker, smaller, interiors, slower downwind performance. Twin cockpits with bridge decks are out for me, travellers across the cockpit away from the helm to are a danger.

My question is if I could find a low owner recently extensively re-fitted one, how much slower are they for Med conditions? I would think they would have the ability to heave too if necessary and pound/slam less.

There must be members out there that have owned both types of boat ie: older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands?

PS If I were able to realise another €50k or so top of the list at present are the Italia Yachts 12.98 & 13.98 - just gorgeous!

Thanks Matt
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Old 14-04-2021, 04:35   #2
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

On the other hand.... X-Yachts have so many things going for them (especially the mid-generation X-xx2 range) that slightly smaller tanks cannot possibly rule them out. Firstly, they sail well in even the lightest of airs so less need for large quantities of diesel (mine has 160 litres which seems to be plenty), and when you do need the diesel, hourly consumption is very OK. Secondly, water tank can be topped up with a water maker.
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Old 14-04-2021, 06:31   #3
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

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Originally Posted by HeinSdL View Post
On the other hand.... X-Yachts have so many things going for them (especially the mid-generation X-xx2 range) that slightly smaller tanks cannot possibly rule them out. Firstly, they sail well in even the lightest of airs so less need for large quantities of diesel (mine has 160 litres which seems to be plenty), and when you do need the diesel, hourly consumption is very OK. Secondly, water tank can be topped up with a water maker.
True, I am certainly considering them, I've only seen 442's with the berth to the side of the 'owners' cabin do you know if they are available with the bed accessed from both sides? I would love an X-50, very well proportioned boat, though I do hear the boom could do with being a little higher to enable a higher dodger/sprayhood. How is height going forward in the 442?
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Old 14-04-2021, 07:11   #4
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

Jeanneau uses mild steel backing plates for the stanchions?
Sorry, since when?



OK, I must admit, I do not know all of the Jeanneau boats but on my SO 49 (and several other J boats I know directly) these backing plates are bronze. Off of my memory +/- 200 mm long, 100 mm wide and 20 mm thick.


Having owned and maintained a Jeanneau for quiet some time now, I would not believe everything that's said about their (low) quality on the web.


Loredo
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Old 14-04-2021, 07:37   #5
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

Good to know Loredo, that year is your SO49?

There's a thread on the Jeanneau Owners FB group about it, it was a 2011 44i owner as he found movement at the base and checked to find the plate badly rusted, and then others including 09 36i, 06 35 and an 04. 05 & 06 49i's and o5 & 06 45DS owners found the same type of plates.

There were owners of older Jeanneaus a 91 SO 51that found better materials.
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Old 14-04-2021, 07:58   #6
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

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Originally Posted by GoleenHarbour View Post
True, I am certainly considering them, I've only seen 442's with the berth to the side of the 'owners' cabin do you know if they are available with the bed accessed from both sides? I would love an X-50, very well proportioned boat, though I do hear the boom could do with being a little higher to enable a higher dodger/sprayhood. How is height going forward in the 442?
That's the most common version, the one with the owner's cabin as you describe. There are none with the bed accessible from both sides, I'm almost sure. The version I have is actually the one with two additional bunks going forward which makes things a bit tight here and there. But these bunks do leave the option open for getting converted into storage.

I am 1.88m myself (6'2"?) and have no issue with the head room.
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Old 14-04-2021, 08:25   #7
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

I'm the same height so that's good to know!
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Old 14-04-2021, 10:00   #8
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

Personally I am a fan of older boats. My boat is 30 years old, and the old one was 40. My knowledge of boats available to you is very limited, but from what I see and read, I have to think an older Southerly or Moody or Halberg Rassy would be a better boat than a later mass produced boat.
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Old 14-04-2021, 10:20   #9
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

"I had come to the conclusion that I should be looking at boats less than 20 years old."
I have no knowledge at all of the boats you are talking about but I am interested why a lot of people look to buy boats getting on for 20 years old. I bought my own boat when she was 17 years old & had been sitting around unused for 3 years before that. Back then it was a boat I had only previously dreamed of owning & I still feel that way 23 years later, BUT.. the boat needed new rigging etc & since then has had a total & very expensive refit, new engine, new electronics, etc etc etc.
Financially, it turns out I would have been better off putting all that money into a much newer boat, which would also still be worth a lot more than my boat is now.
Of course, I absolutely prefer the design of my boat which would only be available now in a much more expensive semi custom built boat - but I have spent a fair amount of time not sailing....
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Old 14-04-2021, 12:02   #10
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

You really need to read up on the onerous rules, regulations, requirements, qualifications and costs of cruising the Med today.

Buying which boat should be way down the list at this time.
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Old 14-04-2021, 12:05   #11
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

I'm sure top brands use more care during construction, but I doubt it means less maintenance over the years. Newer boats are better designed and built than older ones.
It reflects a constant evolution easily seen when comparing boats built a decade apart.
I do agree that 2000 or newer is a good place to start, but the newer less used boats will need less work than an older ones regardless of brands.
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Old 14-04-2021, 13:58   #12
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clivevon View Post
"I had come to the conclusion that I should be looking at boats less than 20 years old."
I have no knowledge at all of the boats you are talking about but I am interested why a lot of people look to buy boats getting on for 20 years old. I bought my own boat when she was 17 years old & had been sitting around unused for 3 years before that. Back then it was a boat I had only previously dreamed of owning & I still feel that way 23 years later, BUT.. the boat needed new rigging etc & since then has had a total & very expensive refit, new engine, new electronics, etc etc etc.
Financially, it turns out I would have been better off putting all that money into a much newer boat, which would also still be worth a lot more than my boat is now.
Of course, I absolutely prefer the design of my boat which would only be available now in a much more expensive semi custom built boat - but I have spent a fair amount of time not sailing....
That's interesting and I'm happy that you're happy with your boat despite the financial and time costs. As `i said in my original post, I've learned from other owners' stories on this and would look at older boats that have had extensive recent refits as from what I've read at a minimum electrics and plumbing tend to need replacement at around 20.
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Old 14-04-2021, 14:00   #13
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

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Originally Posted by jmschmidt View Post
You really need to read up on the onerous rules, regulations, requirements, qualifications and costs of cruising the Med today.

Buying which boat should be way down the list at this time.
Thanks, I have and realise it's complex depending on the country, but I have the qualifications and by that time will have Irish rather than British citizenship.
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Old 14-04-2021, 14:01   #14
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

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That's the most common version, the one with the owner's cabin as you describe. There are none with the bed accessible from both sides, I'm almost sure. The version I have is actually the one with two additional bunks going forward which makes things a bit tight here and there. But these bunks do leave the option open for getting converted into storage.

I am 1.88m myself (6'2"?) and have no issue with the head room.
Do you know the differences between the Mark 1 & Mark 2 442's?
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Old 15-04-2021, 02:21   #15
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Re: Older mid-premium brands V newer mass-produced to mid-premium brands

"it was a 2011 44i owner as he found movement at the base and checked to find the plate badly rusted"


My 49 is a 2006 build. It has NO mild steel anywhere in the build.
But there is a truth in your sentence. Movement at the base!
It's hard to believe but most of the Jeanneau's, comprising mine, do / did have exactly that problem. For whatever reason them guys in the factory are too lazy to torque them stanchion bases down! Loose base = water ingress rather sooner than later.

I've just sold the 49 and got another Jeanneau (does that tell you something???). Guess what, the PO of the new to me boat had to torque down the bases too. This can become an adventure since access to the bases is not always simple. Key word here is do what needs to be done ASAP.


Yet, it's not that this is a J only problem. Any new boat I know of has had it's toothing problems. A buddy with a new high end premium brand almost lost his mind... In my opinion, any "new" boat needs to be carefully checked and the problems corrected by the owner. "Minor" ones like loose stanchion bases are a good example. Loose hose clamps come to mind also. Loose bolts, electrical connections... the stuff we all have to deal with.

With the new to me boat, I have no illusions, I'll take a week off and go through each and every system for checking and correcting problems.
I'd do the same with any brand of "new" boat, not just the J.
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