Beneteau Oceanis 37 boat tests
As a way of giving a better information about the boats posted on this thread, I am going to post links to independent boat tests, regarding those boats.
Kind of a second opinion
The second one will be about the Beneteau (Oceanis) 37
(posts 306 and 314)
"Beneteau took a good look at the basics when designing the new Oceanis 37. The result is a sociable, solid performing cruising yacht, says Andi Robertson
While sometimes subtle refinements and a few clever ideas are enough to move forward with a new model within a range of cruising yachts, with the Océanis 37 it was a back to basics look at the working areas of the boat. It is this that sets the new Finot Conq design apart from its rivals.
Interior comforts are a given, but it was the cockpit area which the Beneteau revisited from the basics. They took the desire to maximise safe seating space in the cockpit as perhaps the key element of the boat’s designed layout and ergonomics.
The new Océanis 37, like her latest stablemates, has a lovely, simple interior by Italy’s Nauta Design, but it was the layout and the efficient performance of the hull by Groupe Finot which sets her apart, leading something of a new concept in fast cruisers.
There are two immediately striking aspects to the new Océanis 37,..: the modern hull lines which in many respects echo aspects of the powerful Open class style boats for which Finot Conq are so well known, but still offering modern, sympathetic lines and a subtle coach roof and deck-line. From the stern quarters it is not hard to see the Class 40 style lines with maximum beam carried well aft, forming a broad powerful stern.
As well as being the ultimate family cruiser this is a boat which is well set up for short handed, easy sailing with a good, big overlapping genoa set on a roller furler and, on our test boat, a simple stacking style mainsail.
So as well as being a boat the whole family can cruise extensively together, there is the capacity to easily sail it for miles short handed on ‘deliveries’, when the whole team is not available, returning to base short handed or heading to a more exotic location short handed.
The cockpit table is excellent as is the wheel and pedestal, but it is the flip up liferaft locker on the port quarter which is a really clever innovation. Supported on a gas strut, literally the whole back quarter of the stern lifts to cockpit floor level to house the liferaft.
There are three big other lockers. On the opposite side is a sail locker, which looked a little tight to keep a dinghy in, even well deflated.
Sadly we only had a light breeze to sail the Océanis 37. But there was enough to learn that this is an easily driven and easily handled performer.
In a light sea breeze the new 37 answered the smallest puffs and was quick enough to build control and steerage.
A consensus quickly develops when with a posse of like minded media testers on board we were pleasantly surprised by how well the Océanis 37 sails.
The day’s enjoyment on the new 37 was completed with the 90sq.m asymmetric gennaker. It really pushed the boat along quite pleasantly requiring minimum attention and would take the breeze forward of the beam with ease. Under the circumstances it was a perfect scenario, gently drawing a clean wake across the flat Mediterranean Sea on a warm February day.
Down below the Océanis is excellent in every living department. With no fewer than 14 windows or ports of all shapes and sizes there is a lovely light, airy feel. There are two layout options, one with a pair of symmetrical double aft cabins, and one with one single athwart-ships owner’s aft cabin. But so too, the big, spacious forecabin is fantastic with lots of headroom and a small vanity unit or desk.
The new boats have deep, well protected overhead windows in the roof which afford lots of light.
The galley too, is great with a big, forward opening fridge unit and big twin stainless sinks. There are two large cupboards and four closed shelved systems. While we like the effect of wood closures to shelf fronts, we also appreciate that plexiglass allows you to see what is in the shelves without opening them.
Overall we’d concur with France’s Voile magazine that, for its size and purpose, the Océanis is a boat of the year for 2008. For cruising, and even the odd local race, ...in real comfort, in the Océanis 37."
The latest sailboat from the world’s most prolific builder is a near perfect example of why Beneteau is the world’s most prolific builder. It understands the market. It knows what we want in a boat and it delivers it to us time after time. This new model, the Beneteau 37, is stylish and clean on deck, the interior is comfortable and thoughtfully laid out, it performs very well but is also easy to sail and to maintain, and it’s affordable. Manufactured in South Carolina, there’s little doubt that Beneteau has launched another best-seller. ...
I took a brand-spanking-new 37 out for a SAILING Magazine Boat Test after the Miami Boat Show. The midmorning breezes were fickle but that didn’t stop us from shutting down the engine as soon as we cleared the dock and working our way south on the ICW under sail. The boat is extremely nimble and, I confess, we were showing off a bit by quick-tacking across the 200-yard channel. Overtaking the powerboats putting along in the No Wake zone was rather nice. Once we had a bit of breathing room, we eased the sheets and sped along at 6-plus knots. The apparent wind was 8 knots.
The 37 combines the established talents of naval architects from Groupe Finot with elegant interior styling from Milan-based Nauta Design. The result is a thoroughly modern look that marries form and function in a very user-friendly package. ....
Beneteau has a proven construction philosophy that might be summed up like this: Build rock solid fiberglass hulls with balsa-cored decks; use interior molded pieces to streamline production; use scale purchasing power to offer savings that other builders can’t match; and finally, finish boats out to a high standard. Despite building more boats than any other company, Beneteau gets the details right. The new 37 has superb fiberglass sculpting throughout. The intricate diamond pattern nonskid that offers excellent traction but is easy on the feet is one of many examples.
...This is a long-winded way of saying that the new Beneteau 37 is efficient on all points of sail right out of the box, or right off the dock.
The cockpit is quite wide and very comfortable. The 37 doesn’t have much taper to the hull shape, holding its beam well aft. The wheel is located well aft and at the helm you feel like you’re sitting on the transom. I like this perspective. It gives you a full view of the sails and a direct connection to the rudder. When you give the leather-covered 36-inch wheel a small turn the boat responds immediately. There are three cockpit lockers, including a huge sail locker to starboard. ...
The external chain locker forward is deep and large enough to carry an honest amount of ground tackle. The stanchions support double lifelines and the pulpits on both ends of the boat are robust. ....
The interior is surprisingly bright and airy. I say this because the sleek deck profile would not suggest this result below. However, every living space has a minimum of one natural light and air source. Also, bright white molded pieces help to keep things light. The layout is practical and the finish is lovely. ..
Access to the aft cabin is through the galley. Billed as the guest cabin, it is roomy and includes a genuine double berth and hanging locker. The head and nav station are opposite the galley to port. The head includes a stall shower and is more spacious than heads in older model Beneteaus. .. Most 37s will include a microwave oven above the chart table.
The portlights flood the saloon with light, and seem bigger below than from on deck. The hull ports also add light and sense of space. Opening portlights and a large overhead hatch afford terrific ventilation.
The owner’s cabin is forward. I was surprised to find that there’s plenty of headroom, 6 feet, 3 inches to be precise, and that adds to the spacious feel of this comfortable cabin. ...There is a lot of stowage with a hanging and shelved locker to starboard and large lockers below the berth. Another big overhead hatch and bright and efficient halogen lights make this cabin user-friendly.
There’s enough water tankage to avoid installing a watermaker right away. All together there’s 98 gallons with tanks under the aft bunk, and the forward section of the forward bunk. ...
A 29-horsepower Yanmar diesel is very fuel efficient and provides enough power to push the 37 along at more than 6 knots in protected waters. Truthfully, the boat sails so well, and is so easy to sail, the engine will primarily be used for getting in and out of the marina. The 52-gallon fuel tank will likely last all season. ...
Back on Biscayne Bay the wind remained fickle. Bringing the boat hard up on the wind it accelerated smartly. Pinching high, 35 degrees apparent, we kept the boat moving. The 37 is a sailor’s boat, you can feel the rudder at all times and the boat talks to you. If you get a bit too high you know it immediately and a modest correction gets you back in the groove. I like a boat that you sail by the seat of your pants and by the wind on your face, not just by instruments. ...
The new Beneteau 37 is destined for success. Despite the weak dollar, the base price of $139,900 makes the boat a great value. ..
Sailing Magazine | Beneteau 37
For this 37-footer, designers Finot/Conq gave the hull a beamy stern and a high-performance keel (a backwards L in profile) made of cast-iron. They placed the chainplates and shrouds right out on the gunwales, providing good support for the mast, an arrangement that limits the length of the headsail and so restricts the area. This makes the headsail relatively easy to tack, a good idea on a family boat; a good idea on any boat, for my money?anything to reduce the drudgery of winching.
This rig layout is standard practice on grand prix boats, but it also works well on cruisers because it is simple. The mast needs to be a little taller to recover some of the sail area lost by the small headsail, but the wide shroud base helps support it.
The accommodation layout is classic modern, an owner's cabin forward, two double cabins aft. This boat's stern is so wide that in the starboard aft cabin the berth is almost as wide as it is long. And you can lie in bed and watch the waves astern, through the opening port in the transom, a luxury enjoyed by the likes of Cook and Flinders and Bligh, but few yachtsmen since.
More than 20 years ago Beneteau invented the user-friendly galley. More accurately they introduced design details which made life easier for sailors and they still come up with new ideas for interiors. In the benchtop there's an icebox which doubles as a crockery storage. You can put the beer here, or if you want to sail before you do the washing up, stick the dishes in here.
And another new idea: Behind the settee is a small table lamp. You can lift it out and take it upstairs and plug it into a socket in the cockpit table for atmospheric dining al fresco.
There's a third new idea: A clear washboard lives in a groove beneath the main hatch. Pull it aft and it drops down into place. Easy to do when closing up after a sail, and it encourages you to do it early if the weather's getting nasty, rather than put it off until the cook is getting wet. And the fridge is a surprise, a domestic model with shelves in the front-opening door.
This Oceanis has a big cockpit. It is wide and it is long, not always the case with European boats. This feature alone makes this an 'Aussie' boat.
The wheel is big but there are cutouts in the cockpit seats so you can walk around easily. Alongside the helmsman the portside seat lifts up to take a small inflatable tender, or the liferaft.
The Harken #44 headsail winches are near the wheel and can be reached by the helmsman. On the coachroof are the winches, which handle all the boat's control lines. ..
The 30hp Yanmar (with shaft drive) is quiet and easily pushes the hull up to 7.3 knots and still accelerating. ...
Easy to steer
This Oceanis's steering is as good as it gets. It is light but not too light, and quite high-geared; ...
Easing her to windward in a fitful sou'wester was an absolute joy, made easier by the fact that I could see the telltales from the wheel's windward side. The teak foot supports are big. I would like to tell you more but the morning's sharp offshore breeze was squeezed out as the day warmed up, and we ran out of wind. The Oceanis has only a modest amount of sail, but she did well in the light breeze.
Single-handing is easy. The skipper can reach the headsail winches, and Brendan let her sail herself for minutes at a time in the breeze as he fiddled with the gear. It was his first sail on this brand-new boat.
Price? The base figure is $285,000, a little below market standard for this size.
Motion of the ocean - Boat Tests - Modern Boating Magazine - Australia's leading boating and sailing magazine - Modernboating.com.au
Last edited by PCP; 10-23-2013 at 10:15 AM.