Engine (Universal M25) started nicely, did not smoke, ran fine at idle, full throttle, and at cruising speed. It seemed kind of rough between say 1200 and 1500 RPM.
Yep the Universal M25's are all rough in that range. The solution is to replace the stock motor mounts with Vetus K75's. The difference in smoothing out the engine is nothing short of amazing.
I'll echo the recommendation to check out the C34 site
. It's a great source of info.
I thought the "Catalina smile" was only an issue on early versions of the Catalina 30, not on the 34, but again I'd check out the C34 site.
My thought is I should not loose too much money (well it is a boat) and might sell quick enough if I want to sell in 4 years and get a more serious cruising boat.
That was our thought process. When we bought our boat in '08 we assumed we'd go bigger. But here it is 2014 and we're still very happy with her.
If you do decide to sail off for distant horizons some day there will always be a market for a well maintained Catalina.
Also I wouldn't worry too much about tall rig vs. standard. There is a difference in performance but it's not night and day.
If you have specific question you might also reach out to Stu Jackson
. Stu's active on this site and on CatalinaOwners.com
. He's a wealth of technical info on the C34 and is active in the association.
Best of luck with her.