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Old 06-21-2002
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westsail and tayana

To a great extent the Westsail 32''s and the Tayana 37''s "are both renouned world cruisers" of another era. They represent a snapshot of the ideal distance cruiser of the 1970''s. A lot has happened in yacht design since the 1970''s. That said, if you intend to sail in higher wind venues and speed is not important to you, and given your price range, these are reasonable choices.

In almost all ways the Tayana 37 is a more versatile boat and all things being equal would be far an away a better choice. Of course in real life, all things are not necessarily going to be equal.

The Tayana 37 at virtually the same displacement and beam as the Westsail 32, but with a snignificantly longer sailing length and taller rig should have a more comfortable motion is all conditions. With a significantly larger SA/D (14.4 vs 19.7), more ballast to displacement and a longer waterline length, the Tayana will sail faster and better in a much wider range of conditions. Obviously the Tayana offers a significantly larger interior and cockpit.

One downside to both of these boats are that they were built with a very wide range of interior layouts and some were clearly optimized for living aboard and so lack many important features that are important for offshore cruising. You will want to find one that has been optimized for offshore cruising since you say that is what you will be doing.

Both boats (if found in your price range) are getting up in years and so the standing and running rigging is nearing the end of its useful lifespans. Engines are coming up on a rebuild and original sails would be pretty well shot.

The Tayana''s typically have teak decks and in conversations with folks who have looked at older Tayana 37''s this can be a serious problem once water penetrates the glass over wood deck structure below. A detailed durvey by someone familiar with this type of problem is important as a new deck can run tens of thousands of dollars if the substructure is shot. Early Tayanas had black iron tanks and these have a comparatively short lifespan and may be ready for replacement. The early Tayanas had wooden spars and if not exceptionally well maintained these can be at the end of their useful lifespan.

Many of the Westsails were owner completed. The quality of the level of finish and the interior layouts vaires extremely widely. Deck hardware varies from way oversized to undersized dinghy hardware which on a boat of this sheer weight is like using jewelry hardware. Rudders at they are wood and are often hung on some cobled up set of pintles and gudgeons and are exposed to a lot of load as these boats can develop some very serious weather helm.

Good hunting,
Jeff


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