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Home » Sailnet Boat Reviews » W - Boats starting with 'W' » Watkins
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Watkins 27
Reviews Views Date of last review
7 6226 Sat June 18, 2011
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Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers None indicated 9.0












Description: Watkins 27
Keywords: Watkins 27
 


Author
administrator

Administrator

Registered: January 2000
Location: maryland
Posts: 1888
Review Date: Wed May 6, 1998 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

A very well constructed boat. Interior volume matches that of some 30 footers. Very stiff and easy to single hand. Standard equipment includes wheel steering, diesel engine,40 gals water, 20 gals fuel, flush john and hand held shower. Cabin roof has built in coaming for dodger. Not an extremely fast boat (7800 lbs disp), but a very comfortable cruising boat as it was designed to be.
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administrator

Administrator

Registered: January 2000
Location: maryland
Posts: 1888
Review Date: Tue July 13, 1999 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:


Sloop rig. Beamy; standing headroom. Pointed better after installing new genoa (w/roller furling). Encapsulated keel, draws 3'8".
Overall, I'm very happy with this boat for Chesapeake Bay. I would not take it way offshore without some mods, because it has a deck-stepped mast, big cockpit, and the 8hp Yanmar diesel on my boat (many have the 15hp) is not powerful enough to punch through any sort of seas.

Check out the Watkins Owner's Group, in particular the Email discussion group, at
http://www.angelfire.com/fl/watkinssailboats/
Here you will find a ton of info and some photos.
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tsenator
Senior Member

Registered: November 2000
Posts: 407
Review Date: Tue July 25, 2000 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Roomiest 27' on market, 10' beam. Sleeps 5. Safe comfortable and well built boat. Standing rigging and spars are oversized for this size boat. Not the fastest boat on the block but can still turn a bit of speed on some points of sail. It just won't point as high as other boats, but that is due to its 3'8" shoal keel , which is great for gunkholing. All in all a very solid boat and will weather heavy seas better than most boats in this category. I have never felt I had to worry.

The most boat you can get in this category for the money. Ideally I would look for the larger 15 HP Yanmar, though they were also fitted with an 8hp and 12HP. Look for one that has been upgraded and maintained over the years and you won't go wrong. I have spent week long trips in comfort. Ideal cruising boat with the room of a 30 footer and for under $20k on the used boat market.
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Review Date: Sat June 29, 2002 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

This is a very solid boat, well built and very stable. With a 10' beam, it also has the most interior room for boats of this length. We have three kids, and it handles a family of five comfortably for long weekends. Sails well, but not a racer. Weather helm is a bit excessive, but decreases if you can keep the boat flat. The only two issues we have had with our boat are leaky stantions (common) and the boat is underpowered and loud with the stock Yanmar 10hp engine.
All in all a great boat for the money. It makes an excellent coastal cruiser, and would most likely handle a trip over to the Bahamas without much difficulty. We love the boat, and would recommend it to anyone looking for a nice boat in the 27ft range.
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lapointe
Junior Member

Registered: October 2001
Posts: 1
Review Date: Thu July 17, 2003 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Recently moved up from a Watkins 23XL. The 27 is a fine, moderate to slightly heavy displacement cruiser. As such the 27 has a fine sea motion and a forgiving nature. Heavy lay up makes this a very robust boat. It will get you there and bring you back. A coastal cruiser, this is not a blue water boat. Lots of space inside, with lots of storage and 6'2" head room. Shoal draft, 3'8" lets you get into tight places. Lots of boat for a reasonable price. Great family boat.
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photodonn
Junior Member

Registered: November 2008
Location: SW Florida
Posts: 5
Review Date: Thu December 16, 2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Roomy, Solidly built.
Cons:

Found my W27 on Craig's List and got it for a song. Some work due to hurricane damage from Charlie, but sails great. Did an 8-day coastal cruise with three adults and it was comfortable. The 15hp Yanmar is perfect for this boat and pushes through choppy seas just fine. Every Watkins owner I have met always has good things to say about the boat.

------------------------------
Donn - W4RAZ
s/v Namaste
1979 Watkins 27 Sloop

"I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship" ..Louisa May Alcott
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speedburd100
Junior Member

Registered: July 2010
Location: Southeast USA
Review Date: Sat June 18, 2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: stable, tons of interior room, yanmar diesel, price
Cons: runs out of rudder in stiff wind due to shoal draft keel; very cramped lavatory facilities.

I am not new to sailing but I am new to a boat of this size. I came up the ranks in small multi hulls but bought this boat as my first entry into the coastal cruising class boat with more creature comforts. I was in the market for a 34 foot CAT but the prices on those things are prohibitive! I would say that the main strong point of the Watkins is the quality of construction for the price you pay. Secondly is the amount of interior room. I am docked next to a 30 ft. Pearson and I have lots more interior room than he does, not to mention standing headroom. Third on my list of "likes" is the inboard 12hp Yanmar diesel engine. It is extremely reliable but may lack power for punching through seas greater than four feet into a stiff wind. It is a single cylinder and is quite loud but the boat is extremely maneuverable in a quiet harbor with this engine and will turn on a dime. Another thing I like about this boat is above average quality of construction, thick fiberglass hulls, and oversize mast. Not the prettiest boat in the harbor by any means, ( the styling is dated and I call her "fat girl", but she is stable and was built back when hulls were thick and quality was paramount. Check this out: The keel is full of CONCRETE so to say it is solid as a rock would be a pun. It is, however, easy to repair if you ground the boat. As far as sailing...she handles anything less than four footers with no problem and is a fairly "dry" ride. She will heel over 35degrees without capsizing but will run out of rudder in winds above 15 knots due to the shallow 3 ft. 8 inch draft. I sailed a 25 ft. Seaward with the same draft and this is characteristic of shallow draft boats. You can't have it all. Running the track out helps lessen this effect somewhat and the boat is actually a knot of so faster in this configuration. I always sail her single handedly with no problem as long as the winds are less than 15 knots. Any more than that and you have to start thinking about furling the head sail and using the mainsail only. Hull speed is around 7 knots and speeds of 4 to 5 are commonplace. You definitely won't win any of the local club races unless they use the handicap system in which case you can do quite well. The cockpit is huge and the Edson Wheel Steering is light and responsive. On the "con" side...the lavatory is built for 3 foot dwarfs and you can forget taking a shower unless you are some sort of Olympic Acrobat to say the least! Fresh water capacity is 40 gallons. The galley has an alcohol stove and a sink, but no refrigerator and no inverter so a couple of coolers are a must. After all, a block of ice will last a week and there is no maintenance that way!
Overall, this is a great boat for the price and with the right crew and if the boat and rigging are in very good condition you could cruise a few miles offshore if the weather/winds are good. On the pre-buy inspection be sure to check for corrosion below the cockpit in the area of the Edson Wheel Steering supports adjacent to the rudder shaft, etc.
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