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Old 04-19-2012
laika laika is offline
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Re: Vancouver 27 / Allegra 24

I recently purchased a UK-built V274 and am continually surprised by the quality and robustness. It's a smallish boat, but is very comfortable for a 27 footer. I'm 6'1" and no other boats on my shortlist allowed for standing headroom below..about 6'2". A luxury! The biggest difference, to my knowledge, between the Canadian and UK versions is that the UK boats have a couple inches of tumblehome in the hull amidships which make her a bit stiffer.

Some of the issues I've found:
1. The rudder strut just below the prop and connecting the keel to the skeg was slightly cracked atop and lengthwise. Grinding down, I found it to be foam cored and all the foam had become rotten. I did not find this to be a hard fix, however, despite it being my first foray into fiberglass repair.
2. minor blistering around the hull, not too surprising for a 30 year old boat.
3. when the hull was laid up, the builder could not mold the main hull along with the rudder strut / skeg all at once. They had to be glassed together afterwards. I found this to be a problem area, one that had in my case apparently blistered and been patched over many years ago. The epoxy/filler used had begun to crack like cement. Beneath, I found small pockets of blistering far into the laminate, requiring a deep grinding and allowing the further honing of my new-found glassing skills.
4. minor issues here and there consistent with an older boat.

Foundational problems that I've heard about with these boats are scarce, though sources are thin, scattered and at times somewhat conflicting. Blistering (though V27s have been produced by many different builders throughout the years) and problems with the rudder heel, somewhat consistent with my experience, is all that really comes to mind.

Otherwise the boat is built like a tank. Heavy and a bit slow, but still easy to shorthand and with a solid motion. Balances and tracks like a true bluewater vessel. The high freeboard is not a bad tradeoff for a drier ride in my opinion, given the boat is heavy and tracks well enough despite the higher windage. The rigging, with the addition of running stays, the inner forestay/shrouds, and twin backstays, provide 12 or so points rising up to the mast at every angle. It's almost a bit comical looking up at it from the deck. The size and mount of the outboard rudder gives a similar effect.

Though being cutter rigged, it seems most boats west of the atlantic have adopted genoas which like to get caught up in the inner forestay when tacking but are otherwise nice for coastal cruising. I plan to convert back to the yankee and staysail once my aging genoa is due for replacement.

At any rate, I hope some of this helps. Here are some other V27 links I've come across:
Vancouver 27 Review : Bluewaterboats.org
Vancouver 27: Pocket Voyager - features.boats.com
Owners association: Vancouver Yachts Association
Owners forum: Vancouver Yachts Association Forum :: Index

I also found these two sites and their boat lists to be generally very helpful:
Atom Voyages - Good Old Boats List
Mahina Expedition - Selecting A Boat for Offshore Cruising
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