Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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Buying a new boat, especially one like Pacific Seacraft 37. takes a lot of skill. These days cruising boats have become complex machines requiring hundreds of decisions, decisions that do not have just one universally correct answer. The correct answer to any of the decisions will reflect your plans for where you will be sailing the boat and your philosophy and priorities about how complex or how simple, where to spend money and where to economize, where to oversize, where to bias towards coastal vs offshore, where to go for low maintenance vs maintainable vs some particular aesthetic affect, where to go performance vs durability, whether to go for ease of handling vs having flexibility and reliability and so.
When you talk about a boat like the Pacific Seacraft which is a venerable design that has been in production for decades pretty much unchanged by time (and argueably quite out of date relative to current thinking), or even on a higher production model with a short production run, it is easy to look at a few dozen used models in hopes of finding one that is close to exactly what you are looking for but if not to see what works well and what doesn't.
In this day of heavily lined interiors and molded framing, the more that you can have the factory install the better. If they know in advance about your fitting out desicions, the factory can beef up the deck where some piece of hardware or safety gear is to be installed, run wires or plumbing, mold in attachment points and so on, and can advise you about the ability of the boat to carry the weight of all the stuff you are adding. The factory may have experienced the particular decision that you are contemplating and might be able to provide counsel on or tweak your ideas. They may talk you out of a bad idea or at least tell you of the pitfalls.
I firmly beleive that it makes no sense to buy a new boat unless you are very experienced, have extremely specific ideas about what you need in a boat and don't think that you can find it in a used boat, have a lot more time and money than you need. I have had jobs comissioning boats and frankly, I believe that it is easier to fix up and alter an existing boat than to commission a new one.
A case can be made that a top to bottom survey is more critical on a new boat than a used one. If something was poorly built when a new boat was new, after exposure to being in the water and stressed by sailing, a major defect would often show up in a few years, making it pretty obvious to a surveyor is not to the pre-survey buyer. On a new boat, everything looks....well....new. Its hard to see where mistakes were made. Lemons do happen. On a used boat you walk away, on a new boat you are stuck wrestling to make the boat right and if the problem is bad enough, take the hit at resale time.
Delivery times vary with the manufacturer and model. I have heard of delivery times as little as 2-3 months on high production models with minimal options and as much as 2 years on complex semi-custom/ semi- production cruising boats.