Originally Posted by PCP
The Sunfast 37 is a nice boat and faster than a Sun Odyssey but not that faster
The boats share the same hull while the Sunfast has better sail controls and a bigger draft.
One of my the nice sail memories was a passage between Leixões (Porto) and Figueira da Foz: lots of wind and downwind sailing. Some hours before my family was able to shower and get ready to sail, leaved the same marina a Sun fast 37 . When I arrived at Figueira da Foz I was directed to berth alongside it.
The boat belonged to a very nice French, that help me alongside. He was very happy with the great sailing day and he was very satisfied with his boat performance. He said to me that he had made an average of 7.4K and asked me how much time I had took: I look at the watch, asked my wife the departure time and tell him.
Well, his smile was not that big anymore
. I had no idea of the average speed, only know that I had had a great sailing day. It turned out that I had made an average speed well over 8K. That does not mean that my Bavaria 36 was faster than his Sunfast 37 ( but it is more fast than the actual Bavaria 36) since I had been having fun and rarely had used the autopilot on all voyage (broached slightly two times). The point is the Sunfast 37 is not that fast.
From that vintage a First 36.7 or an Dehler 36 are way faster. If you can find a Dehler 36, it is a beautiful and great boat. Of course the Sunfast, even if not as fast, is also a great boat and probably not as expensive as the Dehler.
We considered the 36.7, and I have sailed on a couple. They are nice sailing boats, and certainly quicker than the SF37, but the Jeanneau is a much nicer cruising boat than the Beneteau. The same goes for the Bavaria, we have looked at several, and the wife doesn't like the layout. Dehlers are very rare around here, so although I have liked the look of the ones I have seen, I haven't seen many. (I really like the 50ish footer that is in our club with the cleverly designed fold away dodger...very slick!)
The Sun fast 35 locally in phrf is rated some 20+ secs a mile faster, IRC it is also rated a bit faster. The SF37 is a bit of a dog for what it should be! The SO25 is rated about the same as an SF37. Both the SO and SF 37 need a bit more SA to really reach there potential. I know of a fellow in Austrailia that took and SO 35 and added 5' to the mast, now that puppy performs!
Yes, the SF35 is on our radar as well, but again, they are rare. I would like to compare the 35 and 37 directly to see what the differences are. I have raced on a SF37, and thought it performed pretty well against the boats around it, even though I didn't think we sailed it to it's potential. I am not so much concerned with our ability to campaign it seriously as to it's overall sailing qualities. At the end of the day, it is still a "furniture boat"! I would race it in fun club races, but if I want serious racing I will go out on my friend's Olson 30 or some other full-on racer. Once you've raced a 30' keelboat at 13kts it's hard to go back to displacement boats.