Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  

Quick Menu
Boat Reviews  
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Marine Electronics
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here

 Not a Member? 

Home » Sailnet Boat Reviews » P - Boats starting with 'P' » Pearson

Previous Product    Next Product
Pearson 390
Reviews Views Date of last review
4 3446 Sun October 28, 2007
Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers None indicated 10.0

Description: Pearson 390
Keywords: Pearson 390



Registered: January 2000
Location: maryland
Posts: 1887
Review Date: Thu February 12, 1998 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 


The 390 is a flush deck center cockpit sloop designed by Bill Shaw. Like most Pearsons of the era, the 390 is heavily constructed. It The underbody is a keel/centerboard combo which offers shoal draft and acceptable upwind performance. The flush deck and relatively generous freeboard combine for a spacious interior. There is no walk-thru but it is easy to construct a full cockpit enclosure. The engine room is huge and with the cockpit hatches lifted allow you to actually stand up while working on the Westerbeke engine. The original boats had either a 40 or 60 hp engine.
This vessel makes a wonderful economical liveaboard or a 2 couple or large family cruiser.
This user is offline
Click here to see this users profile Click here to Send this user a Private Message Find more posts by this user  
Junior Member

Registered: July 2000
Review Date: Thu July 13, 2000 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 


Designed by Peter Shaw, there were less than 40 built from 1971 to 1973, when they were replaced by the Pearson 419. Sloop. 3 cabins plus hugh engine room w. Perkins 4-108 (a few had equivalent Westerbekes). Very commodious. 6'-5" headroom, bunk length and cockpit length. Outstanding ventilation. Good offshore cruiser (Many are in Caribbean and along East Coast.) Not a fancy condo type.

The first 20 or so were built for charter service by Caribbean Sailing Yachts (CSY) in Tortola, BVI or Abaco, Bahamas. These had two 150-gal water tanks port and stbd outboard of the engine room. The non-charter boats had two 75 or 100 gal tanks. The charter boats were sold into private hands between 1980 and 1985. Today, many of these boats are sailed by live-aboard cruisers throughout the Caribbean.

There is a large chain locker in the bow accessible from the fwd cabin. It works best with a longitudenal divider for two rodes. The fwd cabin is almost unique for ventilation; the hatch is set fwd of the sleeper's head, permitting plenty of flow thru ventilation. The aft cabin also allows flow thru vent. via two large opening ports in the transom. This good of a vent pattern is very hard to find.

The galley has a hugh icebox. I added insulation to mine INSIDE to both make it smaller and better insulated. One of this boat's few drawbacks is that the dinette settee backs are not ergonomic; they are vertical and it would be hard to change that.

There is a hugh amount of storage, both in cabins and in cockpit lockers. The latter is especially useful for cruisers and lacking in many modern boats. I have seen the cockpit locker spaces adapted for refrigeration compressor (port side just aft of ice box) and generator. The engine has excellent access on all sides, although floorboards should be added to the bilge on the sides of the engine.

Steering is readily accessable for normal maintenance and emergency steering (which we have used when cables or chain broke).

The boat sails well--better than, say, the Morgan Out Island models which were competitors. We used the c/b when going to weather, which permitted better wind angle (still was not as good as modern fin or modified fin keels). For a cruising boat, the Pearson 390 will get you there a tad after some others, but at anchor you will have a lot more comfort than most. The stick will just let you get under those 55' bridges on the ICW (Cape May canal and Julia Tuttle in Miami + some others on tributaries) on low tide. The sail area is easy to manage. We improved performance a lot with a new Ulmer main (on the wind) and a UK Flasher cruising spinneaker (off the wind). A whisker pole, sized to handle easily, is a must.

The lack of a walk-thru gives a lot of privacy for families with kids or a 2nd guest couple. A good cockpit enclosure will make a "Florida Room" out of the large cockpit and give you the space of a 50 footer. The cockpit drains well, with four 1-1/2" drains.

I have seen all sorts of neat and useful additions to the 390's. A radar arch with incorporated davits is dynamite. (See the web site

The hull is very strongly built. My boat was hit by a landing craft/ferry, whose prow edge put a split from the deck to the waterline. On a lighly built, say, Benateau or Hunter, the boat would have been split in two. It was easily repaired and when completed, looked like new. I have worked on the keel bottom and know it is very thick and well built.

At one time, I managed an owner's association and collected much info on many of these boats. Send me an email for any additional questions.

This user is offline
Click here to see this users profile Click here to Send this user a Private Message Find more posts by this user  
Junior Member

Registered: September 2007
Posts: 6
Review Date: Sat October 20, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 


Hi all,

We just bought a Pearson 390, but the swing keel had been removed or perhaps never installed. From the original paperwork, it would seem the draft is listed as 5'6", and board down is crossed off.

I would like any infor to help us understand the longs and shorts of this lovely boat. We are hoping to have many wonderful, family hours on her.

We sail in Long Island Sound.

Please give all sailing info from your experineces.

Thanking you in advance.

This user is offline
Click here to see this users profile Click here to Send this user a Private Message Find more posts by this user  
Review Date: Sun October 28, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 


We bought a 1971 390 Pearson four month ago and after we sailed the boat couple of times we decided to remodel it. It is very comfortable and sails well. It was in very bad conditions. During that period we painted the boat, replaced the standing rigging,built new mahogany cabinets for the kitchen with a modern layout and a big nice corian counter top. We rebuilt the motor (perkins4-108)and replaced the bed and cushions fabric with microfiber. Finally we are about to finish a bimini dogger top conbination to be able to complete the proyect and enjoy the boat years to come. We sail off Fajardo Puerto Rico....about the center board it has a bolt to hold it in place and a wire rope conmbination that runs thru a pipe to the port side of the cockpit.
This user is offline

Powered by: Reviewpost vB3 Enhanced
Copyright 2010 All Enthusiast, Inc.

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:46 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) LLC 2000-2012

The store is owned and operated by a company independent of the forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.