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nightworker 03-12-2007 05:23 AM

Dufour 38 - anyone have info?

I'd be grateful if anyone on this site has info on the Dufour 38 Classic - vintage 2000-odd, or similar aged/sized Dufours. Noticed some posts a few years ago, but can't see anything more recent. Was this one of the ones under "new" ownership?

I'm a new menber and in the past 20 years, I have owned three boats, a 30ft teak Alden, a 40 ft steel Roberts, and a 50 ft hardwood sailing junk, and currently have a kauri H-28. Unfortunately, it is in New Zealand, looked after by my family, and I'm working abroad so am looking at becoming reboated.

Any info much appreciated. Thanks.

Giulietta 03-12-2007 12:39 PM


New ownership is hard to define with Dufour....

I have been around Dufours since 1980..never actually owned one but sailed them many many many times..I followed their evolution since the begining...when the best thing coming out of Dufour were Windsurf boards.

At that time..they only had a pretty decent boat I believe 8 meters, with grey cabin paint, but that was it..

The brand started in 1964 and has had several owners since then. It was recentely aquired by the Grand Soleil Group of Italy.

The classical range is now 3 ranges old, they had the classic in 1995, the newer "performance" range in around 2000 and now the new “Italian” range the Grand large. They are reasonable average boats…like Jeanneau, for example…not better…not worse….

The production of the Classic models the 30, 36 and 38 etc. feet starts in 1995 to present a moderately decent sailing boat to be able to compete with Benetau, Jeaneau , etc. but at a more accessible price.
And it suceeded, a cost of less than ideal sailing qualities and reletively less than desired quality. Dufour also bought Gib Sea, where the good stuff is.. So then they owned Dufour cheaper lesser boats, and Gib Sea..very good fast boats, (or were, now well leave it there) but more expensive. Basically you had what you paid for Gib Sea as the top boats and Dufour as the accessible boat. Bt don’t get me wrong, they are still decent boats, just slow. Then they also bought KELT and KIRIE

The classic range were designed with Classic lines, thus the name, and are decent sailing boats, not fast, but comfortable and accessible. They are at Jeanneau level, but not better.

Then came the performance range in 2000, good looking boats...but sailing quality...well... its was just acceptable, like before...the newer (after classic range) look like very fast boats, when you look at them, but are stuningly slow. They changed the looks, but the boats were just average in sailing.
The sailing characteristics are still good, they point ok, sail confortably..just lack performance...even the performance give you an idea, last August, I was dead downwind without spi, just genoa (on pole) and main, racing against a 44 Performance with spi, and racing crew, and I passed him, wining over 18 minutes in a 7 mile run!!

And now (since 2007) the boats look really really nice, Italian hand in the design..can’t beat that…

The newer boats reflect the hand of Italians, ie..look very very very good looks. The New dufours actually are as pretty as Grand Soleils and Dehlers now. So lets see how they sail....they still let the French build them, so it might just be looks again.

In the photo bellow you can see my neighbor a 36 classic.

Intersting thing...the mast, boom and far better than Benetau or Jeaneau!! They actually use Sparcraft performance masts and spars..Charleston Spars for the American market.

Its still a fairly good boat to own, can do coastal cruising OK, ideal for weekends with the family…just don’t expect speed…ahhh they are very stable and good feel at the rudder, and due to the excellent rig…very well balanced too. Inside the finish is just like Jeaneau, not better. Its the type of get out, trim and forget....

A few site for you:

Dufour prudly anounces (rightfully) that their 40 footer, won the IMS 670 in 2005. But the baot was substantially modified. A feat nevertheless.

nightworker 03-13-2007 06:42 AM

Dufours info appreciated
Hi Giulietta,

Many thanks for the very useful response. Kind of what I suspected. Actually, from what I've seen, the best of that type of boat in terms of speed is the X-boat range - sailed on a lovely X-442 in Thailand recently, which though very solid feeling went remarkably well in light airs. But waaay outside my price range! There is a more limited range of good yachts available second hand in Asia than in the US or Europe. Appreciate your comments. Regards, Nightworker.

magnusmurphy 03-15-2007 12:24 AM

I currently am trying to sell my Dufour 36 so obviously you might think I'm biased. However here is what I can tell you:

We really enjoyed the Dufour for what we did with it; which is coastal cruising all the way from Vancouver to Alaska. The boat is perfect for that and very comfortable. I also completely disagree with the previous post indicating that Dufours are or were slow sailers. My boat regularly beat Beneteau 400s in friendly races. I never got the impression that it is slow and in fact always felt very excited about it's sailing abilities as well as safe and confident enough to take my young family into Alaska's wilderness away from civilization.

Our boat is well set up and extensively upgraded for coastal cruising on the West Coast. It comes with complete cockpit enclosure, heat, gennaker, radar, below deck autopilot with remote, increased battery capacity with Xentrex monitor, high output alternator, solar panels, chartplotter, ICOM 802 SSB/HAM with DSC, electric windlass with all chain and large CQR, custom woodwork inside for comfort and utility, extra bilge pumps, safety equipment and much more.

We're selling 'cause we bought an offshore boat. Anyone looking for a good coastal cruiser on the West Coast?

Giulietta 03-15-2007 01:14 AM


Originally Posted by magnusmurphy
I also completely disagree with the previous post indicating that Dufours are or were slow sailers. My boat regularly beat Beneteau 400s in friendly races. I never got the impression that it is slow and in fact always felt very excited about it's sailing abilities as well as safe and confident enough to take my young family into Alaska's wilderness away from civilization.

Geee, where does that leave the Beneteau, huh....:D :D :D

Maybe I am biased, too...on speed, sorry...;) don't be offended, ok?

Anyway..I said the sailing abilities were good not bad...:)

Bluesmoods 03-27-2007 12:47 AM

Dufour 38
A few corrections to the previous post... The Dufour 40 that won the IMS was NOT modified. It had the 6' 11" keel and the tall rig. Anyone can order that. I met the captain and crew at the Paris show!!

The Gib Sea was an okay cruiser. The Classic 38 was a better built boat than Gib Sea. A little more "refined". The new Itilian ownership group went with Dufour and closed Gib Sea down.

The newer boats from 32 to 52 are really nice. Great sailing and great looks with very comfortable well thought out interiors. If you go beyond where the boat is built, you will find Dufour to be quite different from Jenneau. It is the build quality; the technologies utilized to engineer and construct the boats and the design. I highly recommend visiting the factory in La Rochelle if you are planning to travel to Paris. Visit Jenneau too.

I think Umberto Felci hit the ball over the fence with the newer Dufours.

If you are considering a 38, Good choice. Great all around boat... They seemed to have held values reall well too. There is or was a couple of newer 38 Dufours around too. There was one in our yard having a Max Prop installed that looked real nice.

SailorMitch 03-27-2007 09:19 AM

FWIW, the Classic 38 from around the year 2000 was the "old" Dufour prior to the take over by Grand Soleil. Back then Dufour, along with a lot of other Euro boat builders, was trying to get a foothold back in the US market. The Classic line was a definite cut above the other standard makes back then. I never sailed one so can't comment on that, but the accommodations and deck layout were quite nice. The build quality was above average. Definitely worth a look.

And I agree that the line has taken another step up under Grand Soleil.

Giulietta 03-27-2007 09:36 AM


I know the boat and what they modified, so don't tell me that, I live here...the keel was heavily modified to fit IMS, and so were the sails, the interior was lightened, the stay was modified, the furler removed, and so were the I, P J etc, because the boat races in IMS 670 (which is by the way, the slower of the IMS's), the boat has no teak, the boom was lowered and enlarged...the list goes on and on...that boat raced many times in the Copa Del Rey.

Here is the boat.

And since you is why it won....and how...and why...sorry, but that was the last time it boat lenght for that class, ok??It was racing against boats with 3 to 5 feet less LWL on a race whose objective is boat speed...OK?? This is true...ugly but true.

I don't say things just to say, ok??? I don't know a guy who knows a guy that has a friend...I actually know Sergio, and the boat. In the water.

Columnist 03-30-2007 04:02 PM

Dufour 40 IMS
"In one of the recent discussions on the new Dufour models there was a suggestion that the Dufour 40;Quum; that won the IMS Worlds was a heavily modified boat.

The follow excerpt from the 2006 Dufour News should set the record straight.

In 2005 the Dufour 40, “QUUM” won the title “IMS WORLD CHAMPION” as a perfectly standard boat, except for the obvious upgraded set of sails and the IMS trimmed keel. This title re-confirms Dufour’s successful launch into A NEW ERA after a similar success last year when “QUUM” won the prestigious Copa del Rey with the DUFOUR 34. This is no longer a question of coincidence; this is the result of a well balanced design of safe and fast family cruisers that are at the very same time sufficiently competitive to win major events."

SERGIO LLORCA, the skipper of the Dufour 40 “Quum” reveals: “The Dufour 40 is a very noble and well balanced baot, very neutral at the wheel and easy to steer. Upwind it is difficult to make her surf but she keeps up her speed very easily. The big rudder gives her maximum bite with effortless helm.
Our Dufour 40 Quum does not differ a lot from a standard Dufour 40: the keel is
lighter and allows to keep the boat''s speed high up when the full crew is on board or during tacking manoeuvres with less weight down. We have obtained a perfect balance with the aft hull section slightly higher above the water line and a smaller genoa with a barber hauler system, to keep a firmer control on the course of the boat.
The Dufour 34 with which we won in 2004, was originally equipped with a standard
mast: it did not withold us from winning the Copa Del Rey, even in light
airs. The designs of the Dufour 34 and 40 resemble a lot, even their behaviour
at sea. But the Dufour 40 can be steered more precisely and keeps here speed especially at the run "

There is nothing on the IMS 40 champion boat that one couldn't request from a USA dealer. Talk to the guy in Chicago... They can do as much customizing as you want and the boat is still fantastic, no matter how much or how little you want to do.

Giulietta 03-30-2007 06:12 PM

This will be my last post on this thread...I really don't give a rats ass anymore...I'm tired...

Its all in what they call the boat...

Like I said...I don't know a guy that knows a guy, that knows a guy...that is friends with a a guy at Dufour...I KNOW THE BOAT.

Please note that all the differences are in fact possible to get from the factory, as stated, but that is not the standard boat. And because of that they call it a "series" boat.

There were many arguments and discussions here in the racing circle here in Europe about this boat, and its rating and modifications, and Dufour made a Worldwide press campaign for it.

The solution was either withdraw OR...make this "racing" version a "series" boat...offered to the you can buy one....just like BMW...they make the 6 series M6 with 500HP with a V10, and they make a formula 1 engine V10...both are BMW...but not the same car.

The differences I know...

1)The Qumm has 2 more winches installed, wich the standard version does not have, so flying a spi is harder on the "normal" one.
The cabin top winches are Wide base drum for spi control.

2)It has the routing of halyards, sheets, reefs, piano etc. different from the standard version, and different cables

3)It has 50cm (almost 2 feet more) more mast height (its a Sparcraft performance like mine...I saw them in France when I bought mine), and the mast is tapered, but can be ordered at the factory....but at customer's request and more $$$, but ITS NOT the standard version.

4) The genoa tracks and travelleres are different and have more trim features, and BARBER HAULER

5) the keel is 1000 lbs lighter and has no bulb....1000lbs...that decreases wet surface by a LOT..positive stability goes from 115,9 to 108,3 degrees...make it lighter and faster in lower winds. The keel can also be modified by the factory.

6) Bigger main, smaller genoa, main larger by 7,5 SQ meters, genoa smaller by 8 SQ meters

7)The back stay is different and so are its adjustment.

off course "small modifications" that change the IMS rating from 630,3 to 627,9...ahhh now it can enter (or could ehehehe) the IMS 670, even against smaller LWL boats...That's over...Thank God.

The following photos show Quijote, (Qumm's real name) against the "standard" my guest...see for yourself.

The white Hull is Quijote, QUMM.

Qummis boat on left. Standard is on the right.

The issue here is what they call me its like if BMW wanted to race a formula 1 in a street race, and so it could be called a Street racer, was sold to the public as such...

Don't get me wrong, I give it credit for wining...I just don't feel its fare and you?? And don't call it a "series" boat. please...its offensive..for us the same waters

I am not saying its not a good boat.. I'm just saying its champion due to loop holes in rules (well IMS got smarter now and that is over). This is a discussion we had here for a long time, and we all feel its not fare..that is all

We had large fights over this thing, and how "political" crap tried to solve it. I am tired of this duscussion about this boat...its (thank God) water under the bridge...hurray to new rules...

and I don't really care what Dufour says about their you expect Ford to say bad things about Ford in their paper?? I guess not..

Signing out

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