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Bluesmoods 12-06-2004 08:33 AM

From What I have seen and heard, The Saga 409 is the boat of boats in many respects. I know it is a new boat and not many around at this time.

I was looking at a Tartan 4100 too. The Saga seems to be a little more unique, a "finer" and more exclusive boat for lack of better words with tremendous blue water potential.

There does not seem to be a whole lot of discussion on here regarding Saga Yachts which is puzzling to me. Are there any Saga owners or dealers on here who might contribute information on their experiences with the boat? Is it as great a boat as it seems to be? Is it to far out there in terms of price and quality to be talked about in generic sailing discussion groups??

Anyway, I am looking for a new live aboard (2 of us) come summer of 05'' and this boat just seems to be it (for me) from what I have seen and learned so far. There are no dealers advertised in the Annapolis or New York areas and Yacht World turns up a blank on new Saga Boats. Does anyone know of an individual or dealer who has Saga Yachts that one could climb around on? Does anyone know what the price of a Saga 409 in US dollars is?

Thanks. . .

Chris T.

Jeff_H 12-06-2004 02:48 PM

Saga 409 is a comparatively new model so it is hard to comment upon in any real detailed way. At best I can give a few first quick impressions.

Looking at the numbers, it is a comparatively heavy boat with a minimal ballast ratio, not much water tankage but a lot of fuel, and a whole lot of windage and weight aloft which is not too great when coupled with a limit of positive stability of only 120 degrees.

The interior layout is one that is well suited to coastal cruising but is less than ideal for offshore work given the large deck areas and minimal storage. While the styling of this boat is very jazzy, the 409 appears to lack the level of ventilation that is necessary for warm weather cruising.
The deck layout and rig are not really too great for offshore as well. The huge cockpit, and large plexiglass areas, absense of a bridge deck make for a boat that would be prone to downflooding. The mainsheet located on a forward arch neither gives the ease of control, low friction and minimal loadings of in cockpit boom end sheeting nor the simplicity of midboom sheeting. The rig is really a strange set up lacking the ability of a more traditional cutter to fly a staysail, and lacking a fractional rig sloop''s ability to quickly depower.

With all due respect, I would be interested in your thoughts on why you think that this is a boat with "tremendous blue water potential".

The last that I heard these boats are available through Caan Yachts in Annapolis.


Bluesmoods 12-06-2004 03:53 PM

Jeff_H :

Interesting comment regarding the Saga 409. I was impressed with this boat at the Newport show. Have you been aboard? They did a real nice job. The fit and finish is top flight to say the least. I currently live aboard and have logged just a few blue water trips including CA to Maui and return.

Other boat designs I like include the Elan and the Tartan 4100. What are your thoughts on the Elan 40 and the Elan Impression series? How would you compare the Elan product to the Saga product? Does Tartan fit into this picture somewhere?

Appreciate your comments.. Thanks much

Tom K.

Bluesmoods 12-06-2004 05:43 PM

Thank you for your response Jeff and Tom..

Hope to get additional feedback..

Jeff,the boat does offer good storage capacity and is not bad on the Tankage. No boat offers the very best of everything.

To answer your question, here are the numbers on the Saga 409 which I think make it a very competitive (not in terms of racing) boat.

The Displacement to LWL is 189. This is looking pretty darn good to me.. The Hull speed should be just over 8 knots.. I''ll take it.. The sail area to displacement ratio is 17.64 Again; I''ll take it any day. The LWL to Beam is 2.86. Really, no major problem here at all. Although I don''t like to use a motion comfort index and believe there are just to many variables to give this factor a realistic relevance, the industry text books say on this boat that a motion comfort of just on the south side of 30 is not bad at all. Moving right along, the capsize ratio is considered good at 1.86.

The Boat has a high ballast ratio which really should give the boat plenty of stability. In addition, with a angle of positive stability beyond 120 degrees, the boat should have a very high righting moment.

The very positive construction features go on and on. And so could I regarding this boat. Yes, I like it and have spent time studying the design and construction specification. I have owned a Cal, a C&C and a Catalina.

I am really looking for on here is some real world information from Saga owners or a dealer who has had experience with the Saga boat and company in general, as you could review and discuss numbers for ever.

Thanks again,


Columnist 12-06-2004 07:06 PM

That''s a hell of a capsize ratio! Is this for saga 409?

That''s better than Island Packet 40. Also better hull speed, SA-D and
almost identical motion comfort (I considered this impossible for a fin keel
to achieve relative to a modified, full keel). Moreover, the capsize ratio
is almost identical to Cape Dory 40! And the CD''s motion comfort is only
slightly better than Saga''s.

VERY impressive. If this is the Saga, sign me up for one. Just make sure
they build it w/ dorades and lots of opening, stainless steel ports!


WHOOSH 12-07-2004 12:35 AM

This sounds to me like Jeff and Chris are describing two different boats.

Chris, in this day of email, SSB Nets, electronics, navigation ''flight planning'' and other such activities, the 409''s chart table strikes me as too small for a 40 footer, the corner into which its squeezed too stuffy, and the space available for radios, electronics and such to be too limited. I mention this because I''ve been amazed at how important that area is on a boat intended to be cruised.


jkumin 12-07-2004 06:56 AM

You might try the Saga Owners list on this site -
Another source is Mike Locatell at Discovery Yachts in Seattle, a former Saga dealer who sold a number of 43''s. He might be willing to share why he stopped carrying them.

Having raced and cruised on a friend''s Saga 43, I''d take it any day over an IP.

Columnist 12-07-2004 07:21 AM

Hi Jack...

I more or less agree with you.

I have a 35'' boat now with a small navigation table that really never gets used. The days of large plotting chart tables are over for the most part. A few manufacturers still utilize a larger set up within their designs.

The Navigation station in it''s entirety on the Saga 409 however is quite accommodating... Not the Nav table itself, but flush mount space for equipment such as VHF, SSB, repeaters, Laptop, satellite radio, stereo, weather station, and so forth. Not only is there room for all this at the Nav station, but it is all so easily accessible should one ever need to go behind the panels for any reason.

I strongly believe in cutting edge technology, system redundancy and the power of a PC integrated into the navigation system. It is just amazing what happens after it is all said and done. I have equipped a couple of boats like this (C&C) and not only are the owners more than happy, there is a foundation of safety which is un-compromised.

It is important to note that at no time should electronic equipment replace paper charts and appropiate manuals as they should always be kept onboard. The captain and crew should be very familiar with the geographic areas and routes in which they are operating.

Tom K.

PCP 12-08-2004 04:33 AM

Columnist has said:

"That''s a hell of a capsize ratio! Is this for saga 409?

That''s better than Island Packet 40".

Refering to Chris T. statements on the Saga new boat: "...the capsize ratio is considered good at 1.86.
"The Boat has a high ballast ratio which really should give the boat plenty of stability. In addition, with a angle of positive stability beyond 120 degrees, the boat should have a very high righting moment".

Those are misleading arguments. You can simply not assess a boat stability with old formulas like capsize ratio or ballast ratio. Besides, a boat can have a very high righting moment and be inadequate as an ocean going boat. You can not confuse initial stability (stiffness) and final stability (safety stability). A boat can have (as a lot of the racing boats have) very good initial stability and poor final stability.

I would say that the Saga has a better initial stability and the Island Packet has a much better final stability (safety satbility).

I give you one example of the inadequacy of the ballast ratio as a means to assess stability :

The Saga 409 has a 37% 0f ballast ratio. The Regina 38 (a Sweedish ocean going DS sailboat) has only 32%, having apparently the worst stability of the two .
The Saga (according to Jeff_H) has only an AVS of 120 and the Regina has a much better AVS of 134.
The Regina has also a very impressive STIX number of 46. I don''t know the Stix number for the Saga, but I bet that it is a lot smaller.


PCP 12-08-2004 05:48 AM

Chris T., about informaton on the Elan 40 and Elan Impression 43 I suggest a download of both boat tests at,id,10,nodeid,10,ps_lo,.html

that''ts the site from the biggest and in my opinion better Europe sail magazine. It''s in German, but you can use an Automatic translator (fron Google, for instance).
Normally they publish graphically the complete stability curve of the boat, and that, if you know how to read it, says a lot, specially when combined with information on the speed of the boat in several points of sail (given also graphically ).

There you can also download several other boat tests, regarding boats that are close to the ones you are looking for, like the Wauquiez Centurion 40, the Confortina 42, the Dehler 39 and 41, the Dufour 40, the Grand soleil 40, the Hanse 41, the Malo 39 and the C-yacht 11.30.

Each download costs 1,5 Euros and are in PDF format, with lots of photos, drawings and graphics.
First you have to fill and send the "Click and Buy" file, and then it is easy.

Hope to be of help


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