The survey was done on the boat we have the accepted offer on today. It's a 1973 Rival 34 called Southern Rival. It was a good day.
What's interesting about this boat is the process that went into finding her. In many cases, it seems like there's one sailor in the family who is passionate about sailing, and the boat is either that person's choice or a compromise with a spouse.
In our family, the interest and passion about sailing is about equal between my wife and I, yet we also have eight and ten year olds with their own ideas about sailing and cruising, so their opinions are important as well. As a result, we had to find a boat that would be exciting and engaging for everyone in the family-- a four-way success.
We looked at newer boats, older boats, big boats and small boats. This boat is about 15 years older than I thought we'd seriously consider, but the maintenance and upkeep is probably the best of what we've seen. Thus, the "age" question took a second seat to systems and maintenance.
Secondly, we had to think long and hard about size. We wanted a boat to cruise on across the channel, but not so big that the mooring and maintenance costs would destroy the cruising kitty. We wanted a safe, sea worthy boat, even if that meant it was medium to heavy displacement (and the chop is pretty common and considerable around here). We didn't need a "round the world for four" boat yet, and maintaining one for years in advance of crossing oceans didn't make sense. We also wanted a boat that was simple enough to easy leave the dock for a day sail.
Finally, it also didn't make sense (for some weird, hard-to-explain reasons) to just charter boats. (Maybe we really need a boat to go spend weekends on a couple of times a month, even if the weather prevents leaving the slip).
Anyway, the sea trial is next weekend. Here's a photo gallery of from today's survey:
And here's some photos from that gallery:
Two points of clarification:
1) Her name comes from her shipyard (Southern Marine in Southampton, England) and her model range (Rival).
2) The decks are gray, as they were originally, because she was designed as a long-range ocean cruiser. The decks are gray to reduce glare on tropical seas. More than a few Rivals have circumnavigated and done long-range cruising.
Thanks, and I'll let you know how the sea trial goes, if the weather permits, next weekend.