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post #1 of 9 Old 09-11-2008 Thread Starter
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Ericson 39B

Hello All,

In our quest for a boat I have considered Ericsons in the 35-39' range. I have no first had experience with the 39B or 39. The 39B's lines and interior are very much to my liking. As they made very few of these boats there is not a whole lot of info out there that I can find.

In this thread:

http://www.sailnet.com/forums/buying...specifics.html

the owner states how he loves his boat but that it backs up under power very poorly in terms of steering.

Could anyone comment on why this would be?

Thank you
michael

If anyone is wondering why I am now looking at boats this size after my previous questions about a C&C 30, the short answer is my wife spent a week on 30' Hunter with a girl friend recently..... she called my after first night on board and said "your right, find us a bigger boat, much bigger!"

I Love that woman!!
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post #2 of 9 Old 09-11-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doubleeboy View Post
.....the owner states how he loves his boat but that it backs up under power very poorly in terms of steering.

Could anyone comment on why this would be? .....
...because most sailboats back up poorly under power..I am not sure of the science but assume it is due to the small props/low power combo producing as much prop walk as reverse thrust...not much of a reason to put a boat model down. Some boats and some propellers are better, for example I find my MaxProp provides enough thrust in reverse that backing is not a problem.

FWIW, the Ericson 39 seems a poor choice for other reasonsper the thread you reference plus for example, limited ventilation and light down below plus the odd-ball reverse T cockpit design...hard to see how that can actually work very well, where does the helms person sit? You might look for a Cal 39, about the same money but a better all around design.

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post #3 of 9 Old 09-11-2008
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Didn't simon buy a Ericson 39??

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post #4 of 9 Old 09-11-2008 Thread Starter
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Sailingfool, thank you for the comments. In this photo Helmswoman appears to be seated, this is a 39B.

http://home.comcast.net/~cp_harry/full_size/cockpit.JPG

Sailingdog, I am pretty sure Simon bought the boat that was referenced in my first post in this thread.

I will look into a Cal.

michael
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post #5 of 9 Old 09-11-2008
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Considering he's almost back to OZ with his Ericson 39... they're pretty solid boats.

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post #6 of 9 Old 09-11-2008
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The 39B is a GREAT cruising boat. Solidly built; good performance, nice cockpit layout that is non-traditional but it works very well.

If you have not sailed the boat I think you should be more cautious in your overall opinion; I was impressed when I sailed SimonV's boat before he set off for OZ.

The winches aft of the helm is odd but it is an excellent setup for singlehanding. It's the only boat I've sailed with a helm mounted forward in the cockpit. Simons boat had the helm just aft of the traveler; not as is shown in the photo you posted. The position of Simons helm works nicely because the traveler and mainsheet are nearby and the winches are just aft of the helm putting everything within arms reach of the wheel. You don't see many boats like this and it makes me wish my cockpit controls were so easy to get to.

When Simon left SF he went out into a building Gale and he was singlehanding. He managed to reef the boat twice; and ride it out without an autopilot (he broke the wind vane while trying to install it onto the Sail-O-Mat). He reported 12-15' seas that were steep and water washing into the cockpit so it must have been very rough. The boat handled the weather flawlessly.

Simons boat is the same boat that Greg Davids reviewed in the previous thread. He only sold it because he and Melissa are liveaboards and wanted a bigger boat (they bought a Hylas 47). They had cruised Mexico, Hawaii and back to San Francisco before selling the boat to Simon who is now in Vanuatu via French Polynesia, and Tahiti. Based on this I'd say they are solidly built and a very good choice for a budget cruising boat (you could spend way more for higher build quality/comfort).

There was one for sale here in SF Bay about 6 months ago; you might search Yachtworld or the Latitude38 archives. One other thing; Simon's boat was modified from the original floorplan; the aft head was removed and it really opened up the main salon nicely. The side wall where the head was had cabinets installed and a small nav station (which might have been original but in the aft cabin).

Last edited by KeelHaulin; 09-11-2008 at 07:34 PM.
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post #7 of 9 Old 09-11-2008 Thread Starter
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Keelhaulin,

Thank you for the info. The removal of the aft head has been done by a few 39B owners, to afford them room for a wet gear locker and more storage in general. I keep my eyes open for them and do know of a couple that have been available recently. I apparently just missed one in San Diego, but you never know, deals fall thru and the owner will keep me posted.

I recently looked a 37' in Portland but it was a flush deck, raceboat that had some issues I wasn't interested in fixing. I really think if I were to get and Ericson the 39B is the one.

I think Simon bought himself a great boat. If I had been ready to buy a boat when that one was available I would have given it very serious consideration. Greg and Melissa still have some info about the boat on their website, really nice boat IMO.

regards
michael
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post #8 of 9 Old 09-11-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingfool View Post
...because most sailboats back up poorly under power...
Most sailboats with full(er) keels back up poorly.

Fin keels don't usually come under that generalisation.

Raven is a fin without a skeg and she backs up like a car. Coming off the cradle after she has been up I can reverse her out of the channel and out to her mooring without a problem. A most endearing feature.

I'm also not sure of the science but I think its got more to do with the uncluttered distance between the prop and rudder than prop walk.

Andrew B

“Life is a trick, and you get one chance to learn it.”
― Terry Pratchett, Nation

Malo 39 Classic
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post #9 of 9 Old 02-22-2009
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Some owners of Ericson 39s have had new, longer rudders fabricated which solves this problem. I got used to it as built, but there is no doubt that backing up is a challenge. It was a raceboat, not a design suitable for, say chartering, where ease of handling in tight quarters is a must. Still, it's a great boat. Just point it forward.
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