Catalina 30 vs Aloha 32 - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 09-22-2007
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Catalina 30 vs Aloha 32

After looking at myriads of Pearsons, Endeavours, C&Cs etc, we have narrrowed our short list down to an '89 Catalina 30 (wing keel) and an '86 Aloha 32.

Running the numbers through Sailcalc says they are almost identical, with the Aloha have a little better SA/Dsp ratio.

The only other differentiator that Im aware of is the wing vs fin keel, and the fact that there are 7000 Cat 30's vs 80(?) Aloha 32's built. Kinda like a Chevrolet vs Jaguar

Goal here is NC coastal cruising.. We would want to turn this boat over in a few years for something more offshoreish, which we cant afford currently..

Am I missing anything?

Dave in NC
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Old 09-22-2007
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I would go with the Catalina,( Can't believe I said that sorry CD) I have a wing keel boat and do not notice any difference in handling. It does give me a 4 foot draft instead of 6 feet.


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Hey stuffit "Get a life"
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Old 09-22-2007
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While there is a ton of Catalina's out there it has it's advantages. #1 Parts, #2 Parts, #3 Parts plus a great owners group to ask questions if you run into any problems. Having said that the Aloha looks like a great boat. It is a Canadian boat. I love Canadian boats. My first boat was a Tanzer. Great boat and I miss her.
During resale most people know Catalina. Not many people outside Canada and the Great Lakes area might not and shy away from it. From looking at yatchworld it looks like the Aloha is keeping its resale value better though. Tough choices. Bottomline, sail both and see which one tugs at your heart more. The boat will find you and let you know which one is right. Good luck.
Melissa
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  #4  
Old 09-22-2007
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Numbers -wise these boats may compare, but I think they are very different boats on a number of fronts.

Most Aloha 32s were built with an unconventional non-V berth layout that will suit a couple but doesn't really provide good overnight space for occasional guests/children. It also has a much more "shippy" look, with it's deep sheer, bowsprit and counter transom. So first you gotta like the look and the interior. Having said that, as Melissa noted, Alohas are well respected and appear to hold their value well. The designer of the Aloha 32 is Mark Ellis, well known for the Niagara 35, the Nonsuch catboats among others.

We looked at one on our last boat hunt, but found it lacking in accomodation for guests, as I mentioned. However, I've gone on record before as saying there's something to be said for owning a quality, somewhat rare boat that is "not just another Catabenehuntalina".

You definitely have the numbers with you (production-wise) with the Cat30 - but if you like the layout I think the Aloha is a better boat.
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Old 09-22-2007
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Faster - the layout of the Aloha 32 is a forward vberth (eliminates basic layout differences), and the Aloha does have a slightly prettier look, with a nice sheer and a mini stainless bowsprit..

however, since we are planning to turn the boat over in a few years, resale ease is important. And as Melma mentions, its parts and support are available everywhere.. Information on the Aloha is a little more difficult to obtain..

All things being equal its which do I (and the wife) just like better

Denby - thanks for the comments on the wing keel.. Ive heard different opinions on them (re grounding - "its like having an anchor at the bottom of your keel"), and they dont point quite as well, but the 3'10" draft is a real bonus here in costal NC

Dave in NC
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Old 09-23-2007
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Without wanting to disparage Catalinas - there is no comparison in build quality between Aloha and Catalina. There are certainly more Catalinas out there, but there are many more Chevys out there than there are BMW's...
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Old 09-25-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailormann View Post
Without wanting to disparage Catalinas - there is no comparison in build quality between Aloha and Catalina. There are certainly more Catalinas out there, but there are many more Chevys out there than there are BMW's...
Sailormann - can you elaborate? Are you saying that the Aloha is substantially better? I guess thats one thing that Ive not been able to ascertain, is the build quality. All the ratios are pretty even, although the Aloha seems to me, to be designed with some more solidness, although nothing I can put my finger on.. Both boats fit in the coastal cruiser category..

The Catalina is certainly not bad, the best I can tell..

Dave in NC
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Old 09-25-2007
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The Catalina is certainly not a bad boat, and you could do worse than to buy one. The Aloha however, is a better-designed boat, and is more solidly built. Although they may have similar dimensions, the Aloha is a Mark Ellis design, and a solid performer. The hulls were built one by one. George Ouyang, who owned the company was in the shop watching each boat go through, and took great pride in his work.

The Alohas have aged very well and, here in Ontario where they are well known, still sell for fairly good prices (assuming a decent level of maintenance). With boats of that age though, maintenance is a very important factor, and as well-built as the Alohas were, you need to make sure it has been taken care of.

http://sailquest.com/market/models/alo32.htm

http://boating.ncf.ca/aloha32/

I am not sure what your budget is, or if you have already considered and decided against it - but I would highly recommend a CS 30. Admittedly, I am biased as I own one, but these are very well-built boats that are true "performance cruisers". Very comfortable, quick and incredibly close-winded.

In this area, they sell in the same price range as the Aloha 32's.

http://www.cymagazine.ca/onlineExclu...d171b3078b6254

Good Luck and let us know what you decide on !
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I think Sailormann is right on. The Catalinas are the chevies of the seas, but there are others like Aloha and CS are can be considered a cut above.

Another CS model that may appeal is the older CS33 - a very solidly designed and built good looking boat, similar to the CS36T (same designer, Ray Wall) The CS 30 is a lighter, more up-to-date design by Tony Castro.

Having been built in the great lakes area, the selection on the East coast should be reasonable, though as you've noted there will be dozens of Cat 30s for every CS or Aloha you find.

I can see your desire for resaleability given your short term plans for this boat, but on the other hand with a Cat 30 you'll be competeing with all those other Cat 30s on the market along with yours..... If you keep say, the Aloha clean and in great shape it may be a more appealing offering in comparison (esp to a knowledgable buyer)

Do keep us posted.

Last edited by Faster; 09-25-2007 at 10:57 AM.
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Dave in NC:

It may be useful to try and contact this Aloha 32 owner to get a firsthand opinion of the boat. He has outfitted and cruised his boat from Newfoundland to Greenland as well as in the Great Lakes. While not exactly coastal cruising in NC, these trips suggest a pretty well built boat.

http://www.wright-photo.com/index.htm
http://www.wright-photo.com/meriahO.htm
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