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  #1  
Old 01-28-2009
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Consult Needed on Potential Boat Purchase

I have a very good friend who is contemplating buying a boat, and has asked me to help him with the process, what to buy, etc. I have a good sense of what I think he should do generally, but it never hurts get varied opinions. So, I'm putting this out there to see what folks think. Here are the parameters:

1. Looking to spend no more than $150,000.

2. Coastal cruising only, and really limited at that. Pretty much daysailing, weekending and a week or two here and there for summer vacations, all in relatively protected water. Essentially Long Island Sound, with some trips out east to Block Island, Martha's Vineyard, Newport, Nantucket, etc.

3. It's a couple in their early 40's, with two children, a boy (9) and girl (7).

4. They do NOT want a fixer-upper. It's important that the boat be low maintenance. He's willing to putter and stuff like that, but he doesn't want to spend his time bringing a boat back to life, or dealing with an old girl who needs lots of attention. He wants to use the boat, not work on the boat.

5. They're looking in the 35' range; could go up or down a few feet. They have some experience. Not tons, but some. They recently came off of a fractional ownership contract where they used a Catalina 350. I think they can handle the boat just fine, but they might be a tad behind the curve in terms of maintaining and managing a cruising boat (which probably puts them in the same category as 90% of all boaters).

6. The wife is willing and a very good sport, but my sense is that if she's not comfortable, she won't be happy, and that a strictly camping type situation will not portend a long life for this venture.

7. They're English, so they talk funny. Not sure what that has to do with the boat they should pick, but thought I'd throw it out there.

8. They are open to buying either new or used, but keep in mind number 4 above, so if used, it needs to be a pretty recent vintage, and in good shape.

Thoughts in terms of brand, new/used, size, etc.? I have my own views, but I'll keep my powder dry to see what others think before posting where I'm likely to steer them.
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Old 01-28-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danielgoldberg View Post
6. The wife is willing and a very good sport...
I'm interested in a trade!!

For that kind of limited cruising, just like here in the Bay, I don't know why anyone would need anything larger than 32'.

I like the Catalina 310/309. well under budget.

Now, cruising to Florida or Bermuda, sure, 40+ feet of limited or off-shore build is a must.

Yeah, I like that 309!!

Last edited by WouldaShoulda; 01-28-2009 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 01-28-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WouldaShoulda View Post
I'm interested in a trade!!

For that kind of limited cruising, just like here in the Bay, I don'y know why anyone would need anything larger than 32'.

I like the Catalina 310/309. well under budget.

I liked your post better before the edit. It almost made me spit coffee out of my nose when I read it!
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Old 01-28-2009
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Catalina 36. One of the best boats they have made. It is no longer in production, but they can pick up a MKII for less than the numbers they discussed. It is a coastal boat, but many, many people have cruised all over with them. It is an open arrangement (buy this one) where the table folds up against the bulkhead, and gives the feel of more space than what it really is. It has its own nav station, though small. It has a dedicated TV and entertainment cabinet. It has a head accesbile from owners and salon. The V is a bit small, but better than the 350. It has no teak on the outside. It has a nice cockpit for entertaining. It is a very forgiving boat, but still performs very well. It has a great lazarette, given the space below. It has all the amenities of home. They will hav no problem singlehanding this boat and should their aspirations of longer trips ever change, it can take them there. I would take this boat to Bermuda - have you had any race with you?

I feel this boat is heads and tails better than a C350... heads and tails better. I know both quite well. In my opinion, in a production boat, there is not a better made boat under 36 feet. Catalina did away with it (official word) because they wanted to redesign a boat (what would become the 350) to be more accessible for he new systems (generators and ac's are a pain to put on this boat). In my opinion, though, they quit making htis boat AND the 380 (a better cruising boat than the 36) because the profit margin on them was too slim. My opinion... Gerry nor Frank told me that.

The negatives of the boat are:

1) Less storage than the next step up (the 380).
2) Head does not have a seperate shower stall. This requires wiping down the head some after use.
3) Generator is a pain to put in. I can discuss with them/someone if they ever want to know specifics of how and where to do it.
4) Tankage is limited.
5) The aft berth is cramped (for their kids). It requires crawling over each other to get out.

Given their stated plans, I do not think any of the negatives of the boat will be a deterrent. It is a great boat and will be a classic that should hold its value for a long time. They should be able to pick up a late model 36 in the low 100s, giving them a nice $$ left over for any upgrades (electronics or genny, should they wish).

If they want to have more storage, a seperate stall, a generator, and better sleeping quarters (for both), the 380 is my next choice. That is what we cruised/lived on. It is actually the old Morgan 38 hull - and a med disp heavy cruiser. They would be able to pick one up for the numbers discussed. It would be a better cruiing boat and more comfortable boat than the 36. However, if they are fairly sure that they will not cruise in the boat, I would probably stick with the 36 and save some coin.

I can answer any and all questions on the 380 as I know it well. It is not in any way related to the 387. The 380 is also out of production but a late model can be picked up. It too will hold its value well.

Let me know if I can help, Dan.

Brian

Here is a REALLY nice one:

2005 Catalina MK II Sloop Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

another, does not seem quite as nice (but this is just pics)



2004 Catalina MK II Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com
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Last edited by Cruisingdad; 01-28-2009 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 01-28-2009
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I have seen nothing like a REAL SHOWER stall to help with that camping feeling

BUT that seems to mean about 38 Ft
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If a dirty bottom slows you down what do you think it does to your boat
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Old 01-28-2009
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I just added some links on my post above.

On the 36, it certainly does not feel like camping. I find the arrangement a more traditional arrangement. The baot is very comfortable for 4 down below (or for 5 and a child running around on the floor... ask me how I know).

But what is more important is that the boat preforms well. She is sure footed and easy to single hand. She almost turns within her own wake. She is a relatively shallow draft.

I honestly love this boat. i would not be suprised to see these boats appreciate in value over time... or at least hold their own. I will tell you that this was the first boat I took mom and dad to when we were shopping. These prices have stayed the same or apparently increased a bit since then. We were looking at a 04 for around 100k, and a fresh water boat fairly well equipped.

This boat will be fun and keep them safe. She has no real issues I am aware of. It has a very large owners group and they worked out all the bugs long ago. It is the kind of boat you will buy and keep until your destinations become further reaching.

Brian
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Old 01-28-2009
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I've been aboard this one:

2007 Catalina 36 MK II Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

and it is almost brand new. The dealer said that the couple who bought the boat had never sailed before and was afraid of it.

It says "Sale Pending", and is listed a bit more than you were thinking, but it is in great shape.

David
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Old 01-28-2009
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Hate to appear to have a one track mind, but gosh darn it, what they need is a Gemini 105mc. Low maintenance, price is right for one 4-5 years old; certainly hard to 'camp' on a queen sized bed in the master cabine with a full galley, an honest to god bathroom including shower - and separate cabins for each of the kids. Hard not to be comfortable living and sailing flat.

Nothing much to fix, off the shelf the crew of Slapdash (the slapmobile is 2/3 of the way around the world on their 5 year old boat.
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Old 01-28-2009
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I have a Catalina 30 now, and my son is 12 and my daughter 15. We last for a week on the boat before driving each other crazy.

Of course, I am thinking about a new boat, but have looked around quite a bit, and have come to the conclusion, right or wrong, that if we significantly want to increase comfort, we would need a boat with two aft cabins.

As it is now, the kids don't want to share sleeping quarters, so that means that Mark winds up in the quarterberth, and someone sleeps on the folded-down table.

So once people start going to sleep, everything shuts down.

So I've quit looking at boats in the 34-36 foot range, because I don't think the extra comfort justifies the expense.

Still though, I do like the Catalina 36!

David
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Old 01-28-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djodenda View Post
I've been aboard this one:

2007 Catalina 36 MK II Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

and it is almost brand new. The dealer said that the couple who bought the boat had never sailed before and was afraid of it.

It says "Sale Pending", and is listed a bit more than you were thinking, but it is in great shape.

David
I am assuming these people are on the East COast, so I did not list any west coast boats.

Did you like the boat and layout, David? What were your thoughts of the 36 (not particularly this one) in geneal? Just curious if others share my thoughts of the boat.

Brian
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