Cal 34's are good boats. Friends/Neighbors of mine took theirs on a long cruise
down to Mexico
from San Diego
, & had a great time. And for lounging in warm weather, that boat has a great cockpit. I wouldn't hesitate to own one myself. Just that she'd need the appropriate level of tuning & TLC depending on what I wanted to do with her.
Still, all of what's been said applies. Especially about the engine. Ditto on putting both a real stove
, & heater
in (given the climate up there). Also, there are a few other key things which stand out via the pictures.
- Lack of a hatch
turtle/garage. To prevent water on deck from creeping (or pouring) in around the companionway hatch
. And on a boat that size & design, such is guaranteed when going to weather in 15kts or better, give or take.
- ZERO chafing gear
on the lines to the mooring
ball definitely raises some red flags! Especially as I lived up there for 10+ years, & well know of the 50kt - 70kt storms which sweep through every third day like clockwork, from Oct to Mar/Apr.
- The mooring's 30yrs old, yet is listed as corrosion
free. How? And what kind of upkeep's been done on it? As that's a LONG time for any kind of chain to be submerged. Including it's attachment point to the weight at the bottom.
- Also on the mooring, the lines to the boat are simply connected to the top of the mooring ball. That bears closer inspection
, as few mooring balls that I've run across aren't designed nor rated for strenuous loads via that connection point.
Typically on moorings, there's a BIG shackle affixed to a short chain leader (which is shackled to the primary mooring chain). The shackle on the lead is what the primary connections to the vessel get hooked to for anything aside from using it as a spot for lunch.
Also, while the free mooring thing is attractive... if you plan or need to do any serious work/modifications on her, such can be tough (on first timers especially) when shuttling EVERYTHING back & forth via the dingy. That, & not having a firm platform like a dock
from if working on the topsides. Ditto on setting up your own DIY
electricity for your power
tools, when on the hook.
And if you're serious about the boat, & going cruising on her, ponder this. Realistically about 1/3 of your budget
will go for the initial purchase
, then another 1/3 or so for fitting her out, & the last 1/3 for initial post purchase
buys plus to start a cruising kitty.
Just to get an idea of the outfitting number. Were it me, I'd:
- Pull the rig, & inspect every nut, bolt & tang, etc. In addition to replacing all of the rigging
wire. And probably the turnbuckles & toggles too, barring recent recipts from a good, & well known rigger. In addition to that, I'd pull + inspecting the chainplates as well. As more often than not, on vessels in that age range can have some significant corrosion
on them on the sides which bolt to the bulkheads.
Ah, while replacing the rigging
wire, I'd likely adding a Solent or cutter
stay, with attendant halyard
. Plus, a furler
- Re-bed ALL of the deck fittings. Including possibly the hull to deck joint (a weak spot on some Cal models).
- Figure on building a new rudder, as alluded to by another member
- Rig her with all new, double, lifelines
. And add big backing plates
to the stanchion bases if needed.
- Add a Windvane
for self steering
- Add a pair (or more) of heavy duty bilge
pumps. Manual & Electric
- Set up your navigation gear
. Both electronic, as well as old school
- Pick up a few $k in spares for the engine... alternator(s), starter(s), water pump
& impellers, upgrade the fuel
filtering system to twin Raycors. And is the fuel
tankage in place both in good shape, & have sufficient quantity.
- Fit her with a new suit of sails
, & have the current
ones tuned/beefed up.
- Add a dodger
- Figure out a dinghy
system that'll work for stowing aboard
- Do you want a water maker, & or need more water tankage?
- Plan on switching to mostly, or all chain ground tackle. Including a windlass
(with spare parts
, if it's electric
. That & adding 2-3 more anchors.
- What's needed in terms of safety equipment
? Life jackets, harnesses & tethers, plus jacklines
, an offshore flare kit, life raft?
- Add a pair of solar panels
, & an "inexpensive" wind generator
I could go on, and am not trying to dissuade you. Just give you some idea of the basics, in terms of fitting out, & the why behind my numbers.
I think that bottom line, Cal's are great. And that likely the 34 would serve you well (assuming she's structurally sound) given the appropriate level of fitout for what you're doing with her. Though as to going off on her to cross oceans will be a thing more served by your experience gained over time. Including say, doing some cruising in WA & BC. Plus if you're thinking further afield, then going down the coast would both be fun, & a skill/judgment + confidence builder
. Especially as there'd be a fair number of other cruisers in close vicinity.
From there, the heading out further is up to you (plays to the experience thing). That & whether or not you're comfortable with the way the boat handles with the 2 tons of gear & equipment
which you've added to her.
To get a 2nd opinion, from seasoned professionals. Pick up copies of Lin & Larry Pardey's books
, ditto on the Dashew's. As well as Beth Leonard & Evan Starzinger www.bethandevan.com
And for a different point of view on cruising, snag a copy of "Voyaging on a Small Income" by Annie Hill. She & Pete cruised tens of thousands of miles on maybe a few hundred $ per month. The book's a Really good read.
Also, do some crewing
on boats in your area. Both via notices on electronic, plus old fashioned bulletin boards. And by all means do a good bit of it on racing
I say that, as racers as a matter of necessity, push boats, sails & gear too hard. And do things which at times seem questionable from a good seamanship POV. But it's precisely because of that, that you learn how to handle hairy situations. In addition to adding a lot of tools to your sailing toolbox.
PS: You guys have seen this one right? http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/1977...s#.VFoGzHnwvDc
It looks to be a MK III, which typically start at 1.5x & upwards of what it's asking price tag is. Plus she's got a diesel
, & a few other "standard" amenities.