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Old 03-17-2013
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Re: Comparing a P36-2/C36/C34

Weather didn't allow us to get into the P36-2, but we did check out the C36 and C34. Here's my quick take on both after taking a walkthrough while each is on the hard:

C34
General thoughts on the cabin
- Not as much room inside as the C36 (particularly noticeable in the salon and galley)
- The keel-stepped mast intrudes a bit more into the cabin since it is back a bit from the forward bulkhead (unlike in the C36).
- Aft cabin berth was large, but I prefer the "sofa" available in the C36 aft cabin
- Aft cabin door and aft head really make the cabin feel much smaller than the C36

Specific thoughts on condition
- Her bilge was full to the top with water (currently frozen)
- Mystery drill holes in the port side headliner were weeping dark liquid, likely from a wet deck above
- Head sole had about 1/2" of standing water pooled at the drain (not sure why)
- Running rigging was trashed from U/V damage

Verdict: This is not our next boat. Both condition and layout simply aren't to our liking.

C36
General thoughts on the cabin
- Very open, roomy feeling salon
- Starboard mini-table/game table seems like a good feature for our family with 3 kids
- While not overly attractive from an aesthetics stand point, the cabin layout/room seem very family friendly

Specific thoughts on condition/"features"
- The full cockpit enclosure, winter cover and new FrigoBoat refer with keel cooler are pluses for us
- Reverse cycle air/heat is a concern for me. My wife likes having it as an option, but I've heard too many stories about repair/reliability with A/C and so I am considering it a possible detractor
- ProFurl in-boom furling main: Not sure how I feel about this "feature". I'm a a bit leery of keeping the boom/mast angle perfect for furling and have heard some people say furling isn't always easy from the cockpit. I'm not too concerned about sailing performance trade-offs, but the ProFurl unit is only a positive for me if it furls/reefs easily from the cockpit. If not, I'd prefer a simple StackPack or similar.
- She's got ablative bottom paint and looks ready for a complete sanding (or better yet soda blasting) and repaint. This is potentially expensive and labor intensive at best.
- All deck hardware (stanchions, etc.) was re-bedded last season, which could be a plus/minus depending on if it was done correctly and the reason for doing it.
- Not sure how I feel about the wing keel. We don't need it for our cruising grounds. Not sure I want to sacrifice pointing ability for an un-needed shallow draft.
- Owner applied new gray non-skid paint to the deck. I'd rather not have paint to maintain on deck.

Verdict: This boat may get a second closer look when the weather shapes up and I've had time to think things through.

I'm also very interested in in comparing the Catalinas with the P36-2. Without having been aboard the Pearson yet, my perception is that this will be a better sailing hybrid between the C34/C36, since it has bigger size than the C34 but a very similar cabin layout.
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