Ok so a wrench has been thrown into the whole decision making process. A Mirage 24, 1973 just came on the market with "sails in excellent condition" a 3 year old Honda 4 stroke and a whole bunch of new equipment in the past couple of years. The guy bought a new boat and needs the space he's clearing it out at a good price!
It's still more money than the Tanzer, but it's also more boat. Comes with a cradle etc and is sailing on the water. Boat for boat, the Tanzer has a bigger following, a bigger community .. but the Mirage is a bigger boat!
Something I like about the Tanzer is that it's the "VW Beatle" of lake Ontario, the "people's boat" .. it's tough, it's sturdy and it's a classic. There is less info out there about the Mirage and not as many of them. What to do, what to do!
Also, looked at the 1973 Tanzer with the upgraded electronics etc .. boat is no good. Owner cleaned it up well enough, but there is deck hardware where there shouldn't be .. it looks like it goesn't get sailed, there are cracks and holes in the cockpit, not huge or anything but there .. stanchion screws coming out of the deck, heavy rust coloured water in the BACK of the bilge (seems he pumped it out and the bilge forward of the companionway was clear water) .. the keel bolts seem to have a strip of fibreglass over them....
winches on the mast!? Why I don't know ..