swing keel boats around 21' - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 16 Old 07-22-2007 Thread Starter
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swing keel boats around 21'

I posted here about the San Juan 21 in particular as it is a boat I am strongly considering. I have had a couple of people point out that there are a few other very similar boats. My price range limits me to the bargain bin, but I have seen prices for the SJ, Cal and venture all around $2k as wll as seeing a few others (Luger, Santana). Is there a good list somewhere? Any models that are prone to specific problems and to be avoided?
The features on my wish list:

Trailerable with a reasonably "normal" vehicle.
Room for family of 6 to ride. The kids are small right now, and we would rarely all be on at once, but every now and then we might transport everyone out to an island on the lake for a picnic or whatever; I don't expect it to perform well filled up like that, just be a reasonably safe ferry.
Can be single handed
Reasonably stable and self righting if I get too crazy (and I do want to be able to get a little crazy sometimes)
Beachable
Cuddy cabin where a kid or two could nap and a camping potty could be kept/used. Bonus points if it will actually sleep adults for a weekend.
Fairly low cost (around $2K or less if possible)
Good for local lakes and sounds; not looking to do real blue water in this boat (maybe the outside route from Beaufort to Lookout at most)
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post #2 of 16 Old 07-23-2007
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Hmm, that sounds exactly like my Venture 21. It has a v-berth and two plastic settees that with cushions, could function as berths. I've had 8 in my boat at once in brisk conditions without issue. She's a quick, stable little boat that weighs 1175 Lbs. and draws 12" with the keel up, 4-6" with it down. I've been caught out in 50+ in a nasty T-storm and take mine out in the Puget Sound with no problems.
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post #3 of 16 Old 07-23-2007 Thread Starter
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I found an account of the history of the SJ21 and they mention the Venture as the model that created the category (trailerable cruisers with swing keels). There are definitely a lot of Ventures out there. I have heard owners of other boats bad mouth the way the Ventures are built (light and flimsy are what I hear most). It sounds like you feel yours is pretty solid. When someone compares their boat/car/bike/whatever to a highly popular model that they chose not to get, I always take it with a grain of salt. Yeah, I will look at Ventures...
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post #4 of 16 Old 07-23-2007
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It's probably built lighter than some others out there but considering the way I sail mine, hard and wet, the Venture's must be built well enough. I know I piss off lot of larger, more expensive boats out there, especially in light airs. Once I get the new Kevlar sails and the 2A on it, I'm going to take my PHRF rating out there and piss off somemore.

Last edited by CharlieCobra; 08-01-2007 at 04:15 PM.
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post #5 of 16 Old 07-31-2007
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I've been out of town and unavailable for comment since July 21, but I'm surprised that no one has mentioned the Catalina 22. It meets all of your requirements, except that at $2,000, you're looking at a really old boat (from the 1970s) that would have to be inspected carefully before purchasing. Yachtworld would be a good place to look, just to see what is available and how much folks are asking.
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post #6 of 16 Old 07-31-2007
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What's all this crap about boats from the seventies being old? You sir may elect to carry your loved ones and possessions about in new and modern, but unproven technology, I shall remain on board my proven 1973 Cal 21. Hell, my wife's younger than that boat and i've got more doubts about her than i do the boat. Old, harumphhh1

“Scientists are people who build the Brooklyn Bridge and then buy it.”
Wm. F. Buckley, Jr.
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post #7 of 16 Old 08-01-2007
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Sailaway--

Hey, I said "old," not "bad." I'll be 60 on August 27 and while 60 is the new 40, my grandkids would say I'm old. My reply would be that I'm well-worn, broken in, and like a comfortable shoe.

I have a 1976 C-22 that I only sail occasionally but that my brother-in-law uses. It's still going strong.
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post #8 of 16 Old 08-07-2007
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SJ23 Fits the bill

What about the SJ23? Room for growth, fun to sail, roomy, trailerable, sturdy, and in your price range. There are plenty of them for sale.

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post #9 of 16 Old 08-08-2007
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There must be 50 boats in the 20-22 foot, trailerable, swing-keel category. All with similar "sleep 4" (yeah... right) cabin and small-ish cockpit.

After spending a year looking at these as an upgrade from our 17 foot O'Day Daysailer, we realized that what we really wanted was a bigger cockpit to hold more people than the 4 our O'Day comfortably holds. We trailer-daysail only, and really didn't need a cabin (or much of one) at all. We realized that there was NO trailerable boat we'd be happy sleeping on, so why dedicate so much space to a cabin.

Which brought us to 2 boats... The Chrysler C20 and Paceship P20. These are somewhat unique design-wise in their size range. The Chrysler has a small cabin, but very large cockpit... over ten feet long which can comfortably hold 6 and could probably squeeze 8. It has 2200# displacement which is quite heavy in this size-class. The thing is really built.

The Paceship is a totally open daysailer design with just a cuddy under the foredeck... but its cockpit is truly HUGE and unlike smaller daysailers it has a big-boat hull with high freeboard. Its displacement is 900#... really in a different class than the Chrysler except for the similarity in cockpit space.

Neither will win any races (both have conservative sailplans) or beauty contests, but both are well-built and serve a daysailing purpose ignored by their many competitors who emphasized their 20 foot boats' cabins (at the expense of cockpit room).

My only advice here is to consider how you will REALLY use that boat... daysailing with 6+ aboard or overnighting with 2 aboard, because at 20-22 feet, you can't have it both ways. For us, we realized we just aren't interested in the cramped camping these cabined boats offered, and opted instead for the Paceship 20 which we daysail only, but love filling up with friends and family.

(I don't mean to diss those who do overnight on these boats... they are heartier than I am and more power to you... but I do think it fair to describe overnighting on boats of this size as closer to camping than cruising... its not for everyone).

I've seen examples of both the P20 and C20 for sale (with trailer and maybe a small outboard) for $1,000 to $3,000. I paid $1400 for my P20 with VERY nice 2-yr-old sails, and will put another $750 into it to bring it up to very good condition. Last year I passed on a C20 in truly excellent condition for $1,800 (which I still regret).
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post #10 of 16 Old 08-08-2007
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HR...good first post! Welcome.
You might also consider the Columbia 21 for an open daysailer. Really nice sailing boat with lots of room in the cockpit!
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