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Old 03-18-2002
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

I am searching for my first boat, having sailed (crew) an S2 in the past. I am looking for a comfortable weekender (30+), sleeping 6, that responds well to all points of navigation and gains reasonable speed made good close-hauling to windward. I really don''t want to go much older than ''95, and realize this puts some pretty severe limits to my wish list. I''ve got about a year to make this dream come true, though can move before that if the right boat comes along. Ideas?
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

I think that setting an age limit of 1995 may be too restrictive. For example there is J-28 in St. Pete for $35000 that would be just the perfect boat for what you want to do. This is a very good quality boat with nice accomodations and good performance that probably could be purchased for less than half of your budget BUT it was built in 1987.

To me setting 1995 as the oldest boat you would buy seems extremely arbitrary especially if you are thinking of buying a lesser quality boat in order to buy a newer boat.

Jeff
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

Thanks, Jeff! I''ll concede that ''95 is arbitrary, more so because it''s my first boat. My concern is that I don''t want to get nickle and dimed to death in an older boat. What''s more, I see a couple thousand hours on the engine as a big downside to the equation. I guess I could inquire with the owner, but there''s no way to verify the veracity of their estimates of the hours put onto it, is there?
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

Sure, look at the engine hour meter. but there is nothing to say that an 8 year old boat won''t nickle and dime you as well.

Jeff
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

Jeff,

When you put it that way, I guess older can still be better. The J''s I''ve looked at are all tiller steered. Do they come in wheel steering? If not, what would you recommend in a wheel steered vessel?

David
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

1) Not every boat has an engine hour meter. Besides, hours on a diesel is not the best way to judge the life left in the engine. But that''s a whole nother string I won''t get into. Just remember, Dave, that diesels like to be run. I''d be more concerned about frequency of oil changes, no excessive time idling, etc. rather than engine hours only.

2) If you haven''t done so already, go to Yachtworld and do a search using whatever criteria you''re happy with........1995 or newer, 28-30 feet, whatever. You''ll find that if you stick to your original recipe of about 30 feet, no older than 1995, and $70K or under, that you''ll see a whole bunch of Hunters, Catalinas, and Beneteaus.

Expand the criteria to something like 1990 or newer, 28-34 feet in your price range, and you''ll start to see some Pearsons, Tartans, Dehlers, C&Cs and a few others popping up on the list. For $70K you can buy a nice boat. It''s your money of course, so make yourself happy.

One question I have.........do you really want 6 people spending the weekend on a 30 footer?????????
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

SailorMitch,

Ahoy, and thanks for your slant on things! In answer to your question, I would never want 6 sleeping on a 30 footer. I have a son and a daughter, who won''t want to be snuggly close to each other in a few years, and typically settees seem awfully narrow without some sort of pullout function or conversion dining arrangement.

Would you classify Beneteau about par with Hunter. A local yacht broker has an ''89 Beneteau 350 he wants me to look at ($49k range), but I''m wondering if that''s not just a dog with different fleas!

David
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

David,
I''ve got a 350 and sail with two kids (9 and 11) my wife and a dog and the model you''re looking at is most likely the same that I have (it''s a 1990, but was manufactured in ''89).
We handle week-long runs just fine. Sure, there''s not a lot of dancing room, but with the exception of rainy days, everyone is scatter about on deck or in the various berths or the salon and space isn''t a problem.
We''re very pleased with the boat, it handles great and is well built. If it was maintained well, $49k is a good price. Some think the Volvo 28 hp is a little underpowered, but it doesn''t bother us. We run it around 5 knots, at 7 she hums along, but gets hot.

Good luck,

Don

ps. ANY boat is going to nickle and dime you, if you properly maintain it.
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

Don,

Thanks for your thoughts. My kids are 5 and 8. Regarding your boat, have you raced her? If so, how did she do? How high can she point toward windward?

David
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What Would You Buy For 70 Grand

David,

To answer your question about Beneteau vs. Hunter, check about 25 topics down in the Buying a Boat category for a thread with that exact title. It''ll give you my opinions, plus those of many others, on Beneteaus, Hunters, Catalinas, Pearsons (which I own btw), Chevrolets, Buicks, etc. The bottom line is that YOU are buying the boat, so make yourself happy. Yes, lots of us have our opinions, but ultimately it''s your boat for sailing, which is what it''s all about.

As for your questions about pointing ability, be aware that most everyone lies like hell about that. As for me, my Pearson 27 with its wing keel can outpoint a VOR 60 (or whatever those boats are called these days........used to be Whitbread 60s) any day of the week.

Check out the Beneteau 350 and see what you think. your brain may yell "BUY IT" as you sit at the wheel.

Glad to hear you don''t expect to sleep 6 on it, too.
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