Join Date: Jul 2002
Thanked 4 Times in 4 Posts
Rep Power: 14
Matt, we think the Frers-designed 34 is a great boat and built exceedingly well. Unfortunately, few are available on the used market in the U.S. (or elsewhere, tho'' the factory web site does have listings) and a new one is quite pricey these days with the dollar down against the Kroner. (The Swedes are voting to accept the Euro shortly, I believe).
While we were impressed with 90% of the boat''s design & finish, there were some things that we found inconsistent with our plans to cruise it extensively. Examples include the lack of sufficient space on the foredeck (or elsewhere) to store an inflated dink, a saildrive with servicing requirements inconsistent with our cruising plans, a dysfunctional mainsheet traveller (tough to unload the main in heavy/gusty winds), limited tankage, and an aft (really, a "side") cabin that would be awfully stuffy in warmer climates.
However, every boat has its compromises and we thought this boat had fewer than most. The build quality is tremendously impressive - e.g., they build the hull and deck, join them with a completely glassed joint, grind down any glass dribbles, paint the entire interior (virtually all of which is accessible after the boat has been completed), and only then ship the boat from the glass factory to the boatyard. Thus, every item installed must enter the boat thru the companionway - and can some day be removed. The rest of the fit-out is equally well considered.
Like Catalina & Amel, the company is managed by a single, almost fanatical owner (and now his son) around a set of build & sailing values he holds strongly and which he tests every year with ocean crossings and extended cruising on his own boats. For more info, be sure to look at the info on the 34 and the other designs, including used boat listings, at http://www.hallberg-rassy.com/. An extensive owners'' web site can be found at http://www.classic-hrs.com/.