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  #1  
Old 09-14-2008
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Best Cruiser: Endeavour VS Hunter (Opinions???)

Best Cruiser: Endeavour VS Hunter (Opinions???)

I'm a novice sailor looking to purchase my first sailboat. And am considering two models:
Endeavour 43cc (Ketch) from 1979 - models
Hunter 42cc (Sloop) from 1995 - models

I looking for opinions between these two boats or even other suggestions. I need a center cockpit vessel within this size range. Mostly for coastal and Caribbean cruising and possibly some heavy blue water cruising as well. (No draft larger the 5'3".)

Both these vessels have similar layouts, but I hear the Endeavour is heavy and a slow cruiser, but a stronger blue water cruiser then the Hunter. Both models used sell on average between $100 - 150k. Considering the Hunter is 15 years newer...so what is the better buy? Better Boat? (considering all the variables)

Opinions & thoughts wanted...Many thanks!
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Old 09-15-2008
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This isn't what you want to hear, but others will no doubt echo it: if you're really a novice, both are biting off more than you can chew, especially the two-masted Ketch, and you're a long way from safely cruising in open ocean. Also, why the insistence on a center cockpit?

I'm close to buying a first boat too, and while I'd say I'm maybe a little past novice (but not all that much) I wouldn't think about trying to skipper anything bigger than a 30' sloop at this point.

And another thing, when drafting that $100-150k budget, did you factor in the moorage and maintenance costs of such a large vessel? Eg., you're looking at the better part of $1000 just to have it hauled out and surveyed. $1500+ to have it bottom-painted every year or two. The big diesel's going to need maintenance too.
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Old 09-15-2008
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Novice Sailor probably means different things to different folks, but going on my 3rd season and 2nd boat, I call myself a novice at best even though I read and throughly research everything I do. (Sometimes to my wife's aggravation). I also had some advantage in that I'm a commercial pilot, so understanding weather, aerodynamics (CE and CLR are very much like CL and CG) and navigation were not completely foreign to me.

So, to amplify on what Anthony said, unless you have owned a boat or two, I'd opine that you have no idea what you are getting yourself into with a 40+ foot boat that's 15-30 years old. I think the maintenance demands of any boat that age are an eye opener for first time boat buyers, and on a boat over 40' they could be crushing. I think that fact probably end up sinking a lot of peoples enjoyment of sailing, and they probably started with a boat of 30' or less. Also, there is the fact that every thing is an order of magnatude more difficult on a boat that size compared to a 30 some odd footer. Grinding in a 150 genoa on a 40' boat takes some muscle, maybe more than a crusing couple or family want to exert.

I think its a far more prudent course to start with a popular boat in the 30' range. You either learn what you really need in your next boat, or you'll learn you don't want to devote the time required to maintain a boat. If its the latter, having a popular boat in that size gives you the best chance to recoup most of what you put in the boat.

Also, unless your definition of "novice" means way more experiened than mine does, you need to make a multi year plan to gain the required experience for bluewater sailing. There are courses you can take and places you can gain bluewater experience as crew before taking on the responsiblity for the safety of your boat and everyone on it.

Come to think of it, that might be another area where my pilot experince has shaped my thoughts on sailing. The implications of "Pilot in Command" directly translate to skippering a sailboat. While many on this site clearly understand the demands on a Skipper/Captain, when on the water, it appears that many boaters do not seriously consider that they are ultimately responsible for the safety of their boat and everyone on it.
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Old 09-15-2008
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Neither of these boats is suitable for real blue water but the Endeavor is the better built boat compared to a 1995 HunterCC. Note...my opinion is on THAT particular boat in THAT time period and not all Hunters. If you want a blue water CC boat in that price range I suggest you look at Brewer42, Whitby42, Hylas44, Pearson422 and the Bristol 41 or 44. Understand that the AVERAGE condition boat from this era will require approximately $30-50k in maintenance and upgrades to be fully cruise ready so factor this into your budget.
I am a fan of CC boats and I think that the 40-45' range is ENTIRELY appropriate for your plans and disagree completely with the notion that it is too much boat for you to handle if properly fitted out. Just learn to sail it before heading out too far and you will find it EASIER to handle at sea and safer in trade winds and bigger seas than a smaller, lighter boat (generally). It will also have more stuff carrying capacity and live-ability at anchor.
I do disagree completely with your limitation on draft which will limit your choices, reduce performance and force you into boats that are more unsuitable for sea duty. You might consider a centerboard Bristol if the draft thing is such a big deal to you. I suggest a 6ft. limit if the ICW and Bahamas are in your plans.
As Anthony suggests...a 44 ft. boat has a lot higher ongoing cost associated with it compared to a 35' boat...Once initial fit out is complete, I would guess about double...maybe little less. Be sure you can afford it or your cruise time will be limited!
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Old 09-15-2008
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Thank you Camaraderie. Thank you for actually answering the question that was asked. I'm not trying to start a fight but it seems that some are mostly interested in telling posters how crazy and wrong they are without all the facts. I wouldn't be feeling as strongly this way if at least somewhere they would also try to ANSWER the posters question at the same time as the warnings.....
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Old 09-15-2008
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Well said Michael. I agree with you and Cam on this one.

The board tends to answer the question the way they would do it, and sometimes not answer the question as asked.

It is all fine and good to start with a Sunfish, move to a Laser, then 25', then 30', then 36', and finally buy the 40' cruiser you want to work on for 3 years before setting off on the journey you may never take. However, if you are 60 years old that is a lot of boats to squeeze into a couple of years

People can and do learn on bigger boats all the time. If your horizon is short, you better practice on the boat that will take you where you are going....before you go.
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Old 09-15-2008
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I would get the Endeavour if they are your two choices you have your heart set on.
I would also consider a Peterson 44, Stevens and Liberty boats as well. All are in your price range. A Morgan I/O you might also consider but not my favorite.
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Good thoughts Mel...I neglected those first three and all are suitable...but would place the OI in the coastal cruiser category.
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Old 09-15-2008
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Hate to follow suit but personally also think that the size of the vessel you're thinking about is not a problem. Apart from running costs being higher than for a smaller boat, only mooring could be considered more difficult - but if you don't have much experience - same difference, just get good insurance!
Given the choice I'd also go for the Endeavour, but why take a 43' ketch when you can get a Endeavour 42'/44' sloop/cutter for the same money?
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The OP asked for, and got, opinions and thoughts based on the facts in evidence and the experience of the people he asked.

Its a fact that many (most?) buyers underestimate what its going to cost to own a boat after its bought. Its a fact that its going to cost a lot more to own a 40'+ boat than a smaller one. Its a fact that no reasonable person would recommend someone setting off on a "heavy bluewater" excursion without getting some level of sailing experience beyond what would be considered "novice" and at least enough to know if the boats they were considering are up to their plans. Its a reasonable assumption that a "novice" sailor looking for their first sailboat will not have a good handle on what owning a 40'+ boat entails.

No one said he needed to start on a Laser, or that coastal cruising was beyond reasonable grasp, or that they were stupid or foolish to dream of "heavy bluewater" sailing. The opinion offered was only that a 40+ foot first boat is taking a big step and that one should build some reasonable level of training and experience before setting off on any "bluewater" passage.

But thanks for the chastizing. I will keep my mouth shut hence forth.
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