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Old 14-04-2017, 12:50   #1
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Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

Hey guys

So, going seining in Alaska this summer, supposed to be "The big one", hoping to make enough to buy a boat (well, a real boat, I have a cal20...)

Anyway, I'm a marine diesel mechanic and work on boats 6 days a week, so, highly mechanically inclined and knowledgeable on how to fix stuff.

I'm tired of renting a shack on land, so, time to start thinking about getting a boat

I'm hoping to liveaboard, and also have something capable of cruising. The gulf 32 appeals because I plan on going north to Alaska from Washington, and let's face it, who wants to drive a boat in the rain for a month? Interior volume seems similar....

The wetsnail kinda speaks for itself, I'd also like to go back to Hawaii, and there isn't probably a better choice for a solid boat, but definatley is going to need a dodger...

Both boats are gonna be a slow ride, but, I'm planning for weather and not going to bouy race.

I'm hoping to have 30k for a budget, and it seems both can be found for that price, what else is in that price range that is similarly capable?

What's your opinion on the comparison between the two?


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Old 15-04-2017, 08:40   #2
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

We did SoCal and SoPac in a W32 that we built from a bare hull. They aren't as slow as people like to say unless going to Weather in light air. Still won't win any races in the typical wind patterns you'll see in Alaska in the summer or the inside passage. Would want a Code Zero or Asym. Chute for offhand work in light air or at least a Perkins 4-107/8 or equivalent diesel. Boats will sail quickly and comfortably in tradewind conditions. Did a number of 170nm days and a few near single digits with a 118nm day average for over 10,000 miles with almost no engine usage. For a solo sailor, the Aries vane steered the boat if it would sail which made open ocean sailing a breeze. They are not fun boats to sail. The heavy displacement makes them react slowly but also makes them comfortable to live on under sail.

The boats are roomy, will store a couple tons of goods, have plenty of water tankage and fuel capacity. We lived aboard and cruised for 4 years and were very comfortable. A little short on storage for large bulky items like bicycles but plenty of nooks and crannies for almost everything else.

The bowsprit and boom kin chain plates from the factory were undersized with punched holes that are prone to developing cracks and should be replaced with beefier fittings. There are also rot issues with the bowsprit and boomkin that need to be looked out for. Original fuel tanks were steel and water tanks stainless in the bilge. Both would develop pinhole corrosion over time so look at them closely. Factory went to plastic water tanks later which should be long lasting. Changing the fuel involves pulling the engine. Fortunately, that's a relatively painless operation as the cockpit sole is removable and the engine a pull straight up.

Good luck in your search for a boat.
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Old 15-04-2017, 09:04   #3
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

The SA/D indicates the Gulf is kinda short on sailarea and won't perform well in light airs.

PHRF Ratings
G32- 270-310, let's call it 285 average
WS32- looks like about 225 except , 245 for short mast.

Looks like the Westsail is 1min/NM faster, that's pretty big.

The Westsail is 1' wider which will increase your storage volume significantly even if it doesn't feel bigger because of the wider side decks.

The wider side decks are a big safety advantage in heavy weather.

The way I see it it comes down to what are you going to do with the boat?

If you are going to live on it primarily and occasionally sail around, the Gulf will probably be more comfortable with the pilothouse.

If you are seriously considering offshore passages, then the Westsail has a big advantage on a number of fronts. Offshore the only advantage the Gulf has is probably better fuel economy due to narrower beam and lower displacement, though even that may be minimal due the short LWL.

For liveaboard and coastal cruising a full cockpit enclosure for the WS32 may close the comfort gap between the 2 boats.
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Old 15-04-2017, 09:06   #4
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

Good Luck this Summer fishing! And good luck on your goal. Sorry I don't have any real advice for you but from my research I'm not sure you can get a more capable 32 than a W32. Although I do like the wider stern of the G32-might be bette for fishing??
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Old 20-04-2017, 07:20   #5
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

My vote is on the W32...a solid boat. I wish I had one.
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Old 20-04-2017, 07:47   #6
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

About our Westsail 32 Sundowner | Sundowner Sails Again

Lots of Gulf 32s up here, good for the weather.
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Old 20-04-2017, 08:12   #7
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

Both are good. I like the W32 a lot. In your price range not too much as sturdy. Hans Christian 33 but a lot more money.... and a lot more wood to maintain.
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Old 20-04-2017, 08:14   #8
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

I believe Sundowner was sold a few week ago. With all the new equipment, it was a good deal for someone.

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Old 20-04-2017, 08:32   #9
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

I think long term, a W32 will hold its value better, they have a strong following.
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Old 20-04-2017, 08:43   #10
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

Have a friend in Bremerton who will be listing his WS32 in the next few months. Tons of work done and in great shape. Message me and I will send you his info.
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Old 20-04-2017, 08:57   #11
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Re: Wetsnail vs gulf 32 vs?

How flexible is the budget after a summers work?

1977 Fisher Northeaster 30 Sail New and Used Boats for Sale -

or this about the same as the budget:

1978 Fisher Ketch Sail New and Used Boats for Sale -
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