Originally Posted by nemier
I have always enjoyed your posts, and look forward to more of them.
I've spent 15 years living over in Europe, work there now, and am somewhat familiar with the European sailboat manufacturers. That said, I personally prefer the J109 (built in France?) to the Pogo 10.5. You want to discuss one against the other?
Having sailed a 109 but only been on the 10.50 here's an initial take. The 109 is a cruiser/racer. The 10.50 is an offshore/cruiser.
The 109 has more creature comforts down under but is more cramped, less airy, and has less stowage and space. Above deck it is really well thought out but the wheel & main track positioning clutters up the latter half of the cockpit. It is a well built boat that is a bit of a do it all design from a pointing perspective. Sails and responds well. Certainly not worth (in my opinion) the premium compared to other boats in the range - SF32, 34.7, Dehler34, etc... 90's design before widespread planing hulls that can point (Finot et al)
The 10.50 is a more spartan environment underdeck but it is pretty open and airy. Decent stowage and although it's not classy, the drawers & lockers just work. The team really applied the KISS principle and although the lack of wood grain & trim may be an initial turn off given the price, there's a lot of smart thinking that's gone into it. Above deck it is a very well laid out cockpit and controls are readily available for singlehanding. Dual tiller opens up the space at anchor and there's room for the whole crew. the boat is very well made - feels rock solid and very well built - easy access to systems and areas of potential repair. Crashbox up front and excellent deck hardware. You can tell from my previous post that I'm a fan. This boat can point and maintain speed and off wind it's a monster! That's the 2 for 1 deal with some of these modern designs vs. the J boats these days. You get it all AND the swing keel to get where the other boats of half the performance can't reach. I see this as the near perfect boat for the sailing crowd that doesn't mind the lack of wood trim and some creature comforts.
I can easily see going on that 3 month family cruise, then a year later doing the ARC, then island hopping on the weekends, then heading off into the yonder for another destination. I'll take the concession of not having woodgrain & felt interiors for a boat that will regularly hit 13-15 kts safely off-wind and open up so many more navigation zones for short trips because of this. That's just me.