Best Looking MALE Mod
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Washington State
Thanked 125 Times in 57 Posts
Rep Power: 10
I have owned four Catalinas over the years. They have all been new. I have had warranty issues before and Frank Butler himself called me. Catalina ownership is a pretty tight nitch group and has a very faithful following. You will be enrolled in Mainsheet which is a monthly to bi-monthly magazine which has tech notes, owner discussions, regattas, etc. You will be given the names and contacts of the people who head this up (boat owners, not Catalina employees) where you can email and call for questions, etc. The reason Catalina is so popular is simple: It is a good boat, solid built, and maintains a good resale value.
As far as the 42s go, it has been in production for such a long time becuase it has been so popular. You don't produce boats that don't sell. They have been written up as "classic plastic" by Cruising World and other magazines. The fact that it is still in production today is not a negative... but should be represented as a positive.
I chose a 400 over the 42 because I like the layout and nav better, but there is nothing wrong with the boat. As far as the hoses not being connected (I think that was you), that should have been done in the mfg plant and caught at the dealer. Every manufacturer, including bene and J and Valiant have bad days.
Also, if you are not getting a good representation and friendly following from a Catalina dealer... it is the wrong dealer. You just PM me and I will give you a great person(s) to talk to.
I am NOT a Catalina dealer and do NOT have anything to do with them. But they are great boats.
On the Bene and Jeauneau notes: They are good boats too. The only reason I did not/have not bought one of them is the way the galley is laid out and did not like the way their storage is laid out. I do think Beneteau in particulair is a very pretty boat on the inside (nicer than Catalina in general). Jeanueau is great too, but I never have really gotten into that whole Euro look.
This may sound crazy, but let me tell you a great way to decide on a boat... go sit on them. Sit on them for hours. Go down below. Sit in the salon, lay in the bed (if they will let you), look in the cabinets and imagine a household full of crap in there, stand in the head and imagine manuvering in it (and see if you can up it to a household size), lay back in the cockpit and lean against the seats. Does that hurt your back after a while? Crawl down in the lazarette. Do you have a comfortable Nav station? Can you comfortably watch TV (if that is your thing)? Can you comfortably hide away and relax with a good book? Can you install an Air conditioner? Gererator? Water maker? What will that do to your lazarette? WHat about your cabinets inside?
Those are some of my thoughts. Good luck in your search. It is a really exciting time, so have fun with it.
PS I have sailed a 42 and it is an awesome boat at sea.