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  #1  
Old 02-03-2002
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Islander 33 1965 Yes or No

I am looking at an 1965 Islander it has the flush deck which gives it grate cabin room and a grate deck it has ben sailed around the world and I wish to use it for blue water, dose any one have an openion of this boat?? I could sure use the help!!
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  #2  
Old 02-04-2002
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Islander 33 1965 Yes or No

Early Islanders were really pretty poor boats in their day. They were not particularly respected for their build quality which in the mid-1960''s was considered pretty shoddy.
I find it amazing that one managed to sail around the world. These were just not that tough a boat. I can only assume that someone upgraded the boat and was a very good seaman.

There is no way that I would ever recommend a stock version of these boats as a "blue water cruiser" especially after it has taken the beating involved in sailing around the world. On the other hand if this particular boat has been customized it is hard to know how to advise you without knowing exactly what was done to the boat.

Jeff
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Old 02-04-2002
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Islander 33 1965 Yes or No

jeff you are the first person I have talked to that has felt this way about Islanders. I think most peaple are thinking of the boats that were built in the 70s. are you convinced that a 100k hnschrstn are the only boat capable of blue water.
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Old 02-04-2002
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Islander 33 1965 Yes or No

Here''s the way I look at this. First of all I was around when these boats were new. Compared to other inexpensive boats of that era; Cal, Columbia and Pearson for example, everything about the Islanders were seen as being cheaply done. Seen in context of that era, when engineering on early fiberglass boats was pretty crude and manufacturers had not yet learned to handle laminating materials to assure full strength out of the laminate, Islanders were seen as being the equivelent of any of the mass produced coastal cruiser of today say, Hunter or Catalina.

I raced on a 32 foot Islander of that era that was a brang new boat and the hardware was way under sized, stanchion bases were flexing the deck when you leaned on them, a bow chock pulled out of the deck in a raft up and was only screwed in (which was actually a more common practice back then). In the 1970''s I worked in boat yards and one of the repair jobs I did was where a bow cleat had pulled out of the deck, What we found was improperly wet out cloth. Repairs were comparatively easy because the headliner was vinyl glued in place but when we pulled it down we found major mildew problems in the foam and rot forming where the foam was glued to an unprotected plywood knee.

When you sailed these things they were noticeably more flexible than other boats of that era. That kind of repetative flexing accellerates faigue which can really take a toll on the strength of the fiberglass. By the time I worked on the repair job in the 1970''s there were clear signs of flexure in the hull around bulkheads and hardware mounting points. By the mid-1970''s Islanders had greatly improved in design and construction.

Now then as to your second question, No I am not convinced that you need a $100K yacht to do a circum-navigation and certainly if I were going around it would not be in a Hans Christian. That said, at almost any price range there are boats that better suited for distance cruising and braving the elements. The key here is to identify what you can afford financially and then figure out what is in that price range. If you start with something like an mid-1960''s Islander, you will have a lot more work to beef up potential problem areas than a slightly better constructed boat of that same era.

For example, a Pearson Triton, Alberg 30 or Tartan 27 of the same era would probably make a better choice than an Islander of the same period. The difference in dollars should be pretty small and in the long run if you can''t afford this small difference you probably can''t afford the cost of the trip around.

Respectfully
Jeff
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Old 02-04-2002
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Islander 33 1965 Yes or No

What about the Islanders built in the late 70''s and early 80s? Specifically the Freeport
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Old 02-05-2002
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Islander 33 1965 Yes or No

The Freeports are nice liveaboards with lots of room and a breigh and air interior. They make good coastal cruisers in areas with predominant winds in the 12 t0 18 knot range. They are not good light air boats and they are really not ideal seaboats. (Too many large fixed ports and not enough ballast)

Jeff
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Old 05-26-2009
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hey, i have an islander 33, and i think its the one your talking about. (the one that sailed around the world. and it didnt. (parshally) it sailed from california to st.croix(were i live) and got smashed in hurricane hugo.
i bought it in 1995 for about 500 dollars, it was sank in shallow water.
its name is slim pickins (true, please believe me)

Last edited by tangyo42; 05-26-2009 at 04:37 PM.
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Old 07-20-2009
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Greetings! I just found and joined this forum and saw this thread a felt the need to post.

I have an Islander 33 built by Wayfarer in 1965. Yes, these boats were built for sailing off the S. California coast. However, with some modifications like thru bolting the chainplates, increasing the size of the rigging wire, adding larger scuppers to the cockpit and armoring the large windows with lexan overlays these vessels are capable of sailing the open ocean. I have sailed this vessel once to New Zealand from Cailfornia on a voyage that lasted three years and a second cruise to French Polynesia spending only eleven months. I have sailed from California to Vancouver BC and presently live near Port Townsend WA. The vessel is not fast but I managed to record a 156 mile 24 hr run, (currents help) and I figured 100 miles made good in the direction I wanted to go when figuring passages. The boat has a bit of weather helm which makes controling her with a windvane quite reliable. They are not "squirrelly" and have an easy motion at sea. I have single handed her from the Marquesas to NZ and from Hawaii to California. I have owned my Islander 33 since 1975, if I were not satisfied I would not have kept her for 34 years. I lived aboard and used her as my principle residence for 11 years; not many boats measuring 32 ft 9 inches on her hull molding have as much interior space, the main cabin being larger than is many found on boats many feet longer.

I dissagree with alot of what has been said about their construction here. I worked for many years in boatyards (NZ, Hawaii, and CA) and specialized in doing fiberglass repairs. The inside surface of the hull of my vessel is finished out completely in fiberglass cloth. No getting stabbed by spikes of errant roving or FG mat when reaching into the back of some locker. The hull was laid up in two halves and joined together. Yes, like most boats of that era the bulkheads were hard attached to the hull; and yes, I changed to a foam join on my vessels hulkheads. But the hull on my vessel (and that is the only one I can honestly say I know very intimately) is satifactory. On my passage from Rarotonga to NZ I hit some heavy weather and what I can only explain was a rogue wave lifted my boat and she was thrown on beam ends. The compression post was sheared from the main bulkhead and fractured internally. The aluminum mast step was broken in two and a spreader broke where it joined the mast. Alot of boats would not have survived such a calamity, most boats never encounter one.

Several years ago I repowered with a Yanmar three cylinder diesel and have a propane stove with oven as well as a propane fireplace. My boat sits only 1800 ft from my front door. Certainly they are not the best boats ever built but they can be a quite satisfactory vessel for someone wishing to get into cruising and who is on a budget.

Bests,
Wiley1
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Old 08-22-2009
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Islander 33: Has anyone taken off the mast?

Interesting read.

I bought a 1967 Islander 33 Flush Deck in 2005 and have been very pleased with it. Certainly not fast, but I feel she's very capable. We have her on Lake Superior at present. Nice to hear of your travels through the Pacific on yours. Makes me feel even better about mine.

Question: Has anyone ever taken the mast off? I'm thinking of doing this, as the foam pellets inside the mast used to silence the internal wiring have settled to the point where the antenna coax & masthead wiring are keeping me up at night slapping back and forth against the inside of the mast as the boat rocks.

I'm assuming there is a plate fastened to the deck the deck-stepped mast slides over, as there are no external bolts which I can see from above or below decks, so I figure I should just be able to loosen the shrouds and pull the mast straight up. Is this correct?

Also, I can't believe Islander would have left the bottom of the mast open for the pellets to fall out when it gets pulled, but would like to hear it for sure from someone before I take it off this fall.

Thank you!
Tim
s/v Summer Speil
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Old 08-22-2009
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Tim,
I have taken the mast down and there were no beads inside my mast. You are correct the original mast step is one where the aluminum extrusion sits on a lip on the mast step. The original mast step is a cast affair and, if memory serves, inside the lip is a spigot that rises maybe 5/8ths inches then returns to maybe a thickness of 1/4 or 3/8ths inch. There are a couple of lag bolts which attach it thru the deck molding and into the top of the compression post below. It was along time ago I (1979) replaced my step which I had broken in two on the passage to NZ from Rarotonga. Are you going to hire a crane? I pulled mine with the help of a friend using a four part block and tackle tied to a bridge over the Panmure River outside Auckland. A piece of cake. We had it rigged and the mast down before anyone was the wiser.

My boat is presently in the yard and I will take some pictures of the mast base I replaced it with later today. And I'll also add some photos of some of the modifications I have made to my boat which have proved successful just in case you are curious. I won't be able to post until tomorrow as we have a dinner engagement tonite.

These vessels definitely fit into the classification of "Good Old Boats".

Bests,
Wiley
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