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  #1  
Old 12-16-2006
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Catalina - new vs old

Is there any difference in the quality/construction of new catalinas as opposed to the older ones. It just seems as though anyone considering a newer catalina gets ripped to shreds on this site. However, for people looking for an older coastal cruiser, boats like the catalina 27 or 30 are often recommended.
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Old 12-16-2006
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catalina

I purchased a new (2006) C-387 in June. I don't see why not buy new if you can. The only problem I have had is the Janmar engine overheats and I have had problems getting the dealer via Janmar to fix it. Overall quality is good and the older boats just do not have the same creature comfort and feel
John, Lk Michigan
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Old 12-16-2006
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cardiacpaul is a jewel in the rough cardiacpaul is a jewel in the rough cardiacpaul is a jewel in the rough
Quality/constructions? I don't think there are any new vs. old.

other than... "Catalina itself looked hard at its production methods. It changed the hull/deck joint at the stern to run it across the top of the transom and around the transom opening. This removed it from the transom/ hull perimeter, which is difficult to seal on the inside and is vulnerable to damage. note, I've never seen one damaged
A plate at the top of the compression post for the deck-stepped mast butts the step plate, so there's metal-to-metal contact from the butt of the mast right down to the keel, eliminating a prime source of old-boat maintenance woes. The mast wiring passes through a swan-neck standpipe to prevent water ingress. The chainplates, too, are new, with ball-and-socket joints belowdecks connecting to tie-rods, which lead to an aluminum channel laminated to the hull-liner pan behind furniture in the saloon and head."

I didn't think they got ripped all that badly.

Buy new if you can and want to afford it, buy used if you want to "fix" it the way you'd "really" like. you can get a really decent cat30 for up to what,
25k? tops?

A new 309 will set you back 125k. (gotta love the sugar scoop)
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Old 12-16-2006
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
BWMD...I think you have to take any "criticism" of Catalina in the context of the question asked. Example...the guy who wanted to buy a 20 year old 27 and sail it from California to Oregon without any prior experience. Or which is the better boat...a Catalina or one that costs almost twice as much foot for foot. (To it's credit, Cat had some supporters on that one!)
Catalina's are in general...production boats designed to appeal to recreational sailors on a budget who use their boats on weekends and occasional short trips in inshore and coastal waters. Their direct competitors in this market are Hunter, Beneteau, and I'd also add Bavaria and Jeanneau. I personally think they generally measure up well in terms of value against this crowd.
The other thing you run into here is a general bias against buying any boat new....but that is a whole 'nother discussion! For what is is worth...if someone gave me the choice to take home a new Catalina vs. and old one...I'd take the new in a heartbeat...they've learned a lot over the years from their owners!
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Old 12-17-2006
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I'm with Cam. After being given a "free" 1976 Catalina 22 in 1998, which I worked on for a year to get seaworthy, I spent a very enjoyable four years sailing her. (My brother-in-law has enjoyed her on Delaware Bay for the past three years.) Prior to that I chartered Tanzer 22s from a sailing school, crewed on a J-24 for five years, and spent time on larger boats with friends. All the while I looked around and did some research. Although it was bashed on this site back when it was first introduced in 2002, I bought a new Catalina 350 in 2003 with the options I wanted and have been very pleased with her. And, no, she doesn't sit at the dock hosting parties either. This past season, we were out sailing at least once a week from April 1 through November 15, at which time I hauled out for the winter.

I can vouch for the company being responsive to owner concerns. While I experienced neither problem with my boat, various owners complained about two issues on the 350 led to two warranty bulletins being issued and kits mailed to all affected hulls for retro-fit.

Last edited by SailinJay; 12-17-2006 at 05:18 PM.
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Old 12-17-2006
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Overheating new Yanmars

Quote:
Originally Posted by orthomartin
I purchased a new (2006) C-387 in June. I don't see why not buy new if you can. The only problem I have had is the Janmar engine overheats and I have had problems getting the dealer via Janmar to fix it. Overall quality is good and the older boats just do not have the same creature comfort and feel
John, Lk Michigan
When Yanmar came out with their new engine they reduced the number of cooling tubes in half. There is a dealer warranty program however it
is not being widely publicized. The repair is a new heat exchanger with
the normal amount of cooling tubes.
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Old 12-17-2006
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sailaway21 is just really nice sailaway21 is just really nice sailaway21 is just really nice sailaway21 is just really nice
Bluewater,
There are some boats out there that it can be said, they don't build 'em like that anymore, in a positive way. I'm not sure Catalina would qualify one way or another.
All boats require maintenance, and while there is more on an older boat, it is not that long before you encounter it on a new boat. And that's true even if you don't ram the dock on the first day of ownership! Many owners enjoy doing our own upkeep and while not as fun as sailing, certainly diverting. Many wives have raised eyebrows when we announce we're going down to the boat to varnish, and it's raining buckets out, when in reality we're going down to putz around, do a few things, and figure how we can fit that mega-powered combat information center in our cabin if we ever get the mega-bucks to buy it! So, for those of us in that category, a used boat is just fine. We take before and after pictures that we post on sailnet(because everyone else has been bored to death with them) and enjoy all the little "upgrades" we do to make our boat just right. Or, we're not a doctor and broke and we have to do it or sink! Good luck and whatever you do, don't be afraid of an older boat. As someone said on here about repairing 'em, it ain't rocket science.
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Old 12-17-2006
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There is a difference in construction in that the 3 digit boats are built using a hull and liner method of construction, thus the 250, 270, 309, 310, 320, 350 are the hull & liner constructed models of their 2 digit forebears. The 310 was originally intended as a new model of 30 but was so different they went with 310 instead of 30 Mk (3 or 4, I forget). The 309 is the new version of the traditional layout 30 from all appearances. The newer boats have some of the features that many of us find appealing like "scoop transoms" & deep ladders for ease in dinghy use and swimming from the boat and little or no wood exposed to the weather for reduced maintenance.
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