We had both the Catalina and Sabre on our short list for very different reasons and anticipated usage. The Catalina is a well built and thought out boat and fit our needs and budget
but in the end it was about feel-- when we pulled up to the vessel in the launch, did it bring a smile to our faces? I know there is a lot of information on technical aspects of hull design, fiberglass
lay up, equipment
space and so forth -- and this is critical if you are going to drive your boat hard for a long time in blue water
-- but really how many folks really truly do this among all the sailors and boats out there? A very small percentage.
There may be aspects about whatever boat you choose that may bug you or may not give you what you expect in terms of performance but you can say that about nearly every boat. If you get excited every time you step aboard in the end isn't that what you are really paying for? Woe be the person that doesn't love their boat -- whatever it is. This is a recipe for heart and head ache.
Oh, and in the end we bought the Sabre and smile every time we step aboard.