Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: New England
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Other Pearsons to Consider
If you like the 303, look at a 31-2 or a 33-2 or even a 34 or even a 10M. I am biased and own a Pearson 10M (1979) and $ for $ consider it the best bargain of the one's I mentioned. I don't know what your budget is or what type of sailing you want to do, but the 303 is not performance oriented as the others that I mentioned. By performance I mean it doesn't point high and has a low PHRF rating (180 ish) so it isn't very speedy. If you don't care about those things, than the boat is a very roomy 30 ft floating condo.
You can pick up a 10M for about the same money as the 303 ($25K ish) and you get 3 ft more boat and a lot more performance. It is an older model though (stopped making them in 1980), but it's solid. The 31-2, 33-2, and 34-1 are all going to be in the mid 30's to $50K, but they have better performance and a little more room than the 303. The 34 has a massive cockpit (9') and was my ideal boat until I found our 10M, which I really love.
I agree with others, look at a bunch of 30+ footers before making a decision. I must have looked at 12 boats before I found ours.
Peter Hunt is a good surveyor if you are in the MA/RI area. He has owned several Pearsons, so he knows them inside and out. I think he charges about $15/ft.