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post #9 of Old 10-22-2010
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Originally Posted by PCP View Post
Contest have in Europe a very high resale value. It is not an obscure boat but one of the most well built and seaworty boat ever built. The company still exists (and that says a lot about the quality of their boats) and still makes beautiful and very expensive bluewater boats. This is a typical Dutch boat, that can be compared to Halberg Rassy, not in its design, but in its quality, and that is especially true with older boats. I think the new ones are even more expensive

Contest Yachts | Home

I think, without looking at anything, that older Contest are slightly faster than HR, but they would be considered slow boats by today's parameters. Older Contest were designed by Dick Zall, a very good Dutch designer. These boats, even with 36ft, are really bluewater boats. There are two 36ft, one that was built from 1974 to 1981 and other from 1984 to 1994. The first one is an old design, but the second one is a beautiful boat, designed already with the shape that would be a trademark for all Contests for almost 20 years. If you are talking about one of the last, than it is natural that the boat cost still good money . It is a very good boat, with a classical line .

Contest 36s | Dick Zaal Yacht Design

You have active British and Duch Contest Clubs owners:


Contest Yacht Owners Club

You can ask them about that boat, I am sure they will be glad to help.


They are obscure in North America, particularly on the West Coast of the US. That is where the prospective buyer is, and where sale/resale price will be determined. RColes is knowledgeable about sailboats, yet he came here for opinions because Contests are not frequent on the docks. If he wants a fair resale price, he is welcome to sail his Contest to Europe to sell it, where the boat will be appreciated and fetch a higher price.

In the US, you either wait years for the rare buyer who knows and values the brand, or you accept a price discount. *shrug* How many Europeans really know Morris Yachts and would be willing to pay premium for them -- over and above a known European quantity like Bavaria?

Look, I'm a huge fan of Scandinavian boats little known in the US -- Albins are my favorites, along with Omega, Scanmar, Sweden Yachts, and English permutations of Nordic design like SHE and Sigma. And of course Contessa -- but Contessas were built in North America for a while, they are a famous name much written about by Americans (Kretschmer, Aebi), and everyone knows a Contessa 32 survived the '79 Fastnet when larger yachts did not. No one knows a SHE of similar size also finished that race in good form. So even in Europe, Contessas sell quicker & fetch higher prices than SHEs -- the Fame Premium. Here in the US, the Contessa 32 commonly sells for $35-40k USD; the similar Albin Ballad sells for under $12,000 -- commonly $8,000, and I tried to buy one in Seattle for $1000 USD, no kidding. This same boat has been listed at $48k in Denmark.

So don't get your back up, dude. "Obscure" is not an indictment of Conyplex or Contest or their yachts (tho their early product line was uneven and they did build some dogs), but rather a commentary on how ignorant we in the US are of many old, established, and well-regarded builders in other parts of the world. And how that affects sale and resale prices.

(And vice versa. I'm sure the worthies present could rattle off dozens of boutique North American sailboat marques that have been building top-notch craft for 100 years -- and you would never have heard of most.)

Buccaneer18, Grainnia
SJ21, Diarmuid
Albin Ballad 30, Fionn

Last edited by bobmcgov; 10-22-2010 at 11:06 AM.
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