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post #1 of 7 Old 07-02-2002 Thread Starter
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so many boats to choose from!!!!

hi all,

So, yeah, as the title of the tread implies, I''m looking to buy a boat. I''m going to be sailing mostly on the Chesapeake, with the occasional (once, MAYBE twice a year, good weather, etc) offshore jaunt up or down the coast. So I''m thinking I need something with a relatively shallow draft, good light air ability, but still sturdy enough that my confidence doesn''t go in the pooper when I exit the bay. Budget about 35k, maybe up to 40 if the boat is loaded and I won''t need to put much into it. So, here''s the list of boats that I''ve managed to come up with based on that, but I don''t know too much about their reputations. If I''m just waaaaay off base here then someone please set me straight. All models are early to mid 1980''s:

C&C 34, 32
Hunter 34 (I know, hunters have a bad rep, but I recall someone saying that their quality used to be much better)
san jaun 34
tartan 33
beneteau first 32
elite 32 (heard some bad things here, but what the hell, that''s what the board is for)
dufour 3800 (strange name for a 32 footer)
jeanneau attalia 32

I''m a pretty experienced sailor, but I haven''t sailed that many different boats, mostly smaller day sailors and larger cruisers/racers that are way out of my price range. So if I''ve included any lemons, don''t jump all over me. Thanks for any input!
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post #2 of 7 Old 07-02-2002
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so many boats to choose from!!!!

From what I''ve seen and heard, avoid the C&C 32. If you''ve been racing, you''ll be sorely disappoited, and the layout below is strange as well. Hunter 34 offers a lot of boat for the money- just be sure you get a good one (if that''s not an oxymoron...) Tartan 33''s are solidly put together, but due to the fractional rig, need a good breeze to really move to their rating. Verify the layout works for you as well; Tartan''s fwd cabin/head/salon table setups are not always what people really want. I''ve been impressed with the solidity and engineering of Jeanneaux in general: decently sized hardware, and jump on the deck anywhere you like-it''s solid!; but am not familiar with the Atallia. Dufour''s interiors seem underbuilt for the typical American crew, and likely to be bent out of shape in short order. Beneteaux, like Jeanneaux, seem to be light, but stronger. If you''re looking for light air performance with some solid construction, there might be some J/boats worth checking out, or other C&C models, though they may draw more than you would want. Happy Hunting!
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post #3 of 7 Old 07-03-2002
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so many boats to choose from!!!!

Paul makes some good points. I own a T33 scheel keel and its a good overall boat...the tall frac rig has some bridge clearance problems (figure you need 56'' to feel comfy)and it is a tad slow in light winds, some pointing problems. Have sailed the Bene and like it for close coastal work...cabin designed w/ladies in mind, like the Hunter. Stay with the First series for sailing qualitities. You may wish to look at the old Hunter 37s..Cherebini (spelling) designed.
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post #4 of 7 Old 07-03-2002
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so many boats to choose from!!!!

I can''t say anything about the other boats you''re considering, but we have a Hunter 34 and are using it as you plan to use your next boat. We were able to buy in for (quite a bit) less than the price range you indicated, so you should be able to find a good one (perhaps newer) as well.

The quality of the interior seems adequate. Considering the price, we didn''t expect to notch cabinetry wood-work or metal-work. Still, everything fits nicely and works as designed.

In light to moderate wind, it sails very nicely. Over 15 knots, it will heel about 25 degrees, which makes sailing exciting for some, but uncomfortable for others. If the winds get over 20 knots, the main should be reefed (if not double reefed) and the jib should be shortened or completely furled.

Our Hunter 34 is the shoal draft version, so it''s not quite as good pointing as the deep draft version. However, getting into the slip and some coves is less of a problem thanks to the 4''3" draft.

The interior layout is ideal for coastal cruising with about four aboard. (There''s room for seven, but I think that''s only OK for day sailing.) It lacks a true 1/4 berth, so it''s not really an ideal offshore boat. If and when the day comes that we want to do more offshore cruising, we will likely sell the Hunter 34 and buy something a bit larger, more robust, and which has been designed for ocean sailing. Perhaps a Tayana 37 or a Lord Nelson 41.

For now, sailing the Chesapeake is exciting enough. We can see why there are so many sail boats active in the area. The bay has fair winds, almost no current, and there is no shortage of places to go and things to do.

~ Happy sails to you ~ _/) ~
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post #5 of 7 Old 07-06-2002
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so many boats to choose from!!!!

Murph, since there are several suggestions on this BB to consider Beneteau''s FIRST series boats for the kind of use you describe, I''ll add a few questions I''d encourage you to have answers to before considering them further:
1. With refrigeration but 1 105 amp/hr house battery, where will the add''l house bank batteries fit? There seems to be a disconnect between simple/typical uses like you plan and the boat''s electrical system.
2. Since you mention docking and doing some coastal sailing, which occasionally requires tying up in different harbors, wouldn''t you prefer to have a boat with spring cleats?
3. Are you comfortable with the 20+ gallon diesel tank? If not, where do the jugs go?

These boats may sail great but it seems to me there are lots of basic functional lapses in the layout and equipment when I think about coastal cruising in one.

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post #6 of 7 Old 07-07-2002 Thread Starter
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so many boats to choose from!!!!


Good points, and some things I hadn''t thought of. Most of my sailing experience is day sailing and short-range cruising so there are obviously some things I don''t know to think about/look for, but that''s why we have this board! Thanks for your insight and thanks to everyone else for their suggestions. I''m sure I''ll have more to ask as I narrow things down and home in on THE boat.
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-07-2002
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so many boats to choose from!!!!

Get the San Juan 34 with a desiel motor. You will get a good boat and have money left over. They are FAST and well built with some real nice lines. Thats what I would go for ao that list.
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