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Old 01-11-2002
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your 40-42´ bluewater cruiser

If I get your question you are asking,''what is the cheapest used 40-42 foot boat that is suitable to make a bluewater, long passage cruise?

I will start by saying that you can make safe offshore passages in smaller boats and that that you may be able to get a better built, faster, more comfortable smaller boat for less money. The boats in the offshore capable boats in the 40-42 foot range that are at the bottom of the price range tend to be way older and have comparatively small interior volumes.

The other issue is how much work and money it will take to take a beater example of inherently offshore capable boat in the 40-42 foot range and make it offshore capable. The problem with big inexpensive boats is that they have a lot of age on them. Because of thier size, the parts to put one into solid shape are going to be expensive.

As with any ''cheap boat'', a survey is even more critical because there are a lot of problems that can cause boats to be cheaply priced and you are buying an inexpensive boat to save money and so if you get one with big (read expensive) problems then you have''n''t really saved any money. People who buy inexpensive boats often do not have the money to properly maintain them adding to the problem of buying a ''cheap boat''. You can expect to find some ''issues'' with any boat this age. Unless the boat has been very well maintained and updated by a previous owner, you might expect some combination of the following items will need attention:

·Sails, chainplates, standing and running rigging that are beyond their useful lifespan,
·an engine that is in need of rebuild or replacement,
·worn out or out of date deck, galley, and head hardware,
·worn out upholstery,
·electronics that are non operational, or in need of updating,
·electrical and plumbing systems that need repairs, upgrades to modern standards or replacement.
·Blister, fatigue, hull deck joint or deck coring problems
·Keel bolt replacement (bolt on keel) or delamination of the hull from the ballast for a glassed in keel.
·And perhaps a whole range of aesthetic issues.

So while you may be able to buy some big boats cheaply, you may end up with a lot more in them than it would appear at first blush. Because there is a real limit to what you can sell these older boats for that is often less than it takes to fix one up, in the long run you may be better off buying one that someone else has prepared to go offshore and save a lot of pain and heartache along the way.

Tartan 41- (high $30K- high $40K range)
Probably at the top of my list would be the 1970''s era Tartan 41. I raced on T41''s in the 1970''s. These were pretty hard boats to sail as race boats but they were well made and pretty fast and if you were not pushing them hard were good boats. There were a number of interiors fitted in these boats. Some were stripped out racers but most had a very workable cruising interior.

Other choices might include:
Cal 40
These are really neat old boats. They sell in a wide range of pricing depending on their condition. They are very fast boats for their day and offered a good workable interior. They were lightly built for the technology of the day and so a beater may need to serious work done it it.

Chris Craft Commanche- 42 feet (typically $39K to $50K)
These were nicely detailed S&S designs. As I recall from 25 or more years ago, they had simple well thought out interiors and sailed quite well.

Condor 40-
These are really neat Trimarrans. They were designed for short handed offshore work and really good at that kind of thing. Thier shoal draft lets them get into backwaters that a monohull this size can only dream of.
Ericson 41;
There were two extremely different boats called the Ericson 41. The 1960''s era boat is a visually beautiful boat that would be a neat boat to own even if they are pretty slow and wet. The later 1970''s boat offers a lot of room and a very interesting boat. It would not be very high on my list to go offshore but would not fall at the bottom either.

Hughes Northstar 40,
These boats are listed under a lot of different names. They came in a lot of different versions as well. These are good boats often over looked in the market place. I have seen them as cheaply as $50K but most seem to ask more than that.

Islander 41:
Islander built two 41 footers. The 1960''s boat ($30- 40K range) was a visually beautiful boat that would be at the bottom threshold of a boat I would go offshore on. The more modern Doug Peterson design would not make a good offshore cruiser.

Kalik 40
Nicely finished performance cruisers. They had teak decks which could be a real problem by now.

Little Harbor one ton. (42 feet)
These were heavy duty boats intended as offshore race boats but built in a day when racers could go cruising. These are very solid boats. They do have a strange interior. They were all originally centerboard boats but over time some have been converted to fin keels.

OLD early 1970''s era IOR race boats...
This is a real mixed bag. These boats can vary from some real junk to some very solid well engineered boats. Some have been refitted as cruisers. Some are stripped out down below and provide a platform to design and build a reasonable cruising interior.

Pearson Rhodes 41, Bounty II, and Cheoy Lee Rhodes Reliant (Offshore 41):
These are very similar Rhodes designed boats. The Bounty and Bounty used the same molds and the Offshore and Reliant were essentially the same boat and had a neat but strange layout. These are truely venerable old girls. While they are wet and very slow when compared to more modern designs they are still very good boats for what they are.

Whitby 42 (start in the mid $50k range)
Venerable offshore boats. Not fast, but good boats for what they are.

I am out of time here but this should give you a good start.

Good luck,

Jeff



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