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jfhervy 01-22-2012 05:41 PM

1987 Hunter 31 vs. 1988 Hunter 30
I never thought I would be looking at buying a Hunter, but with 2 kids and a non-sailing wife these boats seem to fit the bill. I'm not looking at crossing oceans, so the fact that they are production boats is a non-issue (I sail San Francisco Bay). I will singlehand or sail with novices so I need a boat I can easily handle by myself. Not looking at any serious racing, obviously, but may want to do a couple fun bay races here and there. Help me decide which boat is better?

- 1987 h31: extensive modifications were done 10-15 years ago for blue water sailing. The boat cruised from Alaska, all the way down to Australia and back to SF. It feels very solid and clean, but it's now a 25 year old boat. I could feel rust on the chainplate (the base of the rode that goes through the cabin) which concerns me a little. The cabin and engine are pristine. The boat is dry. No autopilot and the electronics are original, the sails are recent and still crisp. The deck needs a serious wash.

- 1988 h30: possibly the cleanest 25 yo boat I have ever seen. It has been very gently used and it shows. The whole boat was cleaned & waxed: looks pretty much line new. The sails are old and may need to be replaced soon, although they have been so seldom used that they may hold for another season or more. The electronics are fairly recent and it has an autopilot. The boat feels light and modern.

Faster 01-22-2012 06:49 PM

Similar aged boats, one lightly used and one proven.. but aside from that they are quite different in other aspects. The 31 has a masthead 'B&R' rig with severely swept spreaders, the 30 IIRC has a more conventional, nicely proportioned fractional rig. This will mean smaller headsails and easier handling esp tacking and if a spinnaker is included. This might suit your intended use better.

In many cases boats recently returned from major offshore ventures are long overdue for a serious refit.. this may or may not be the case here...

Interior wise I wouldn't expect to see much difference, but the 30 is of the 'next generation' design from Hunter, leading to the rest of the Legend line (33.5, 35.5, 37.5, 40.5) Either will likely have an iron keel - if so that will be a wash.

I guess it's going to come down to which one 'speaks' to you, which layout you prefer and how much stock you put into 'proven' vs 'lightly used'... either can be good or bad.

Lake Superior Sailor 01-22-2012 07:48 PM

Sounds like who cuts the better deal wins,Can't make money faster! and every old boat--or every boat needs it!...Dale

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