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  • 1 Post By TakeFive
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  #1  
Old 11-18-2002
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Question to Catalina 350 owners

This is to those that own a Catalina 350:

I''ve noticed that every time the Catalina 350 is brought up in these message boards, it seems to stir much debate as regards the virtues of this boat. Someone named Denr claims this boat is best suited for the marina, and that it has a picnic table in the cockpit. A fella named Larry Levine vehomently questions the value of this boat. And others often join in the banter regarding the wisdom of purchasing the Catalina 350.

Here''s my question:

As a Catalina 350 owner, do you regret your purchase?

Thank you for your information
Jack
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Old 11-19-2002
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Question to Catalina 350 owners

Hi..

Yes there are a few. (Very few) that for some reason rather have a problem with the design of the Catalina 350. I can assure you they never sailed one much less spent a night on one. However, they certainly are entitled to their opinion.

I believe to get a good overall feel for how you and your new boat are going to accommodate each other, it is best to talk with somone who does own one, or have experience sailing and/or living on the boat to what ever degree.

Not all boats are for all people obviously or else there would just be one sailboat manufacturer and that would be it.

The Catalina 350 is a very well thought out and well designed performance cruising boat. 731 feet of sail area provide for a powerful, responsive boat that is a lot of fun to operate on all points of sail. I have over 100 hours under sail on the 350 and have raced her done very well and came in ahead of more "dedicated" racing type boats.(placing high with stupid mistakes too).

I have sailed the boat on uncomfortable hot days with light wind and magnificent days with winds in excess of 25 knots with everything flying full. How best to describe this... Let''s see... Fun, safe responsive, stable... rail just about in and out of the water. We’ll stop there for now.

We sail quite often with 4 adults and 4 kids even while racing. There is plenty of room for all at the dock or underway. The spacious cockpit provides ample accommodation for all so you don''t have to scatter folks around the deck or below when it starts to "kick" and you need more room to manage sailing operations.

The boat points very well. I used to race a lot of years ago. For my new boat, I was more interested in family adventure and getting from point A to B in good time. The 350 surpassed my expectations. We walk by so many boats (that is not so important to me), and draw so much attention out there. It "feels" good.

The negative comments I have seen on here or elsewhere seemed to be regarding the beam of the boat...That it seems more like a floating apartment then a sailboat.

I''ll tell ya'' what.. Thhe Cattalina 350 has all the comforts of a vacation house (they are right about that) but... it is a pure joy to sail. They also seem to be upset about the delivered price of the boat in the water with options as compared to other "higher quality" boats that may be around the same price.

I was never a Catalina person. I owned and loved the Lapworth designed Cal. I sold C&C, J/boat Cape Dory & Morgan. I was about to put a deposit on the Beneteau 361 before I saw the Catalina 350.


When I did my first walk around.. I scratched my head and said to myself.. "This thing can''t sail. She is soo darn fat!" But when I got inside and "pictured" life aboard in the real world.. Quiet times and also times with all the kids, games... noise and so forth, the Catalina 350 did it for me. I was told that it was an 12% enlarged 320 whch has a great reputation as a fun spirited sailing machine.

(Note:Why do I now feel like I am writing a sales brochure?)

(anyway) Then, I got to sail the 350. All I could say was . "How the heck did they do it?" and "This is amazing". I still can''t believe it points as well as it does. I could spend long periods of time on the Catalina 350 without ever thinking twice.

All systems are easily managed, work perfectly and just make the whole experience of boat ownership that much more enjoyable. I bought a couple of ceramic heaters so we continue to go down and sail and will do so through early December. We are in the "mid-Atlantic" region. It is so cozy having the cabin right around 72 with and outside airtemp of 40.

I would be glad to answer any more specific questions you might have.

All the best,


AK
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Old 11-20-2002
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Question to Catalina 350 owners

Mr AK (aka Bluesmoods)
I''ll take that answer to mean that you do not regret your purchase of the Catalina 350. (smile)

Given that there aren''t many 350''s on the water, and given that all sailboat owners do not visit Sailnet, I didn''t really expect many responses. I agree that all of us are entitled to our opinions.
Thank you,
Jack
P.S.
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Old 02-05-2015
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Re: Question to Catalina 350 owners

I own a Catalina 350 and agree with Bluesmoods. In addition I will admit that the Catalina is like a floating condo. If you live close to your boat and only go to sail this may not be important but if you stay on the boat for any period of time it makes for very comfortable living. We live a good distance from our boat and usually stay for a week or two at a time. The amount of time we sail is small compared to the total time spent on the boat. I know its nice to think that if you own a larger boat you will be out sailing all the time but based on what I see at the marina we are in, the amount of time the boats are out sailing is small compared to the time they are in the slip.
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Old 02-06-2015
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Re: Question to Catalina 350 owners

Wow!! A 12+ year old revived from the ashes!
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Old 02-06-2015
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Re: Question to Catalina 350 owners

You know, I don't mind the old thread.. because you folks had me looking at the 320 which I had written off as a floating mobile home.. It looks like it actually has some performance too... better than you'd expect too. I like the 90s era ones... not bad... Yeah I know OP was asking about 350, but that 320 is really pretty sweet (putting it on my long term maybe big-er boat list).
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Old 02-06-2015
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Re: Question to Catalina 350 owners

For a few years I have thought that a 320 would be my next boat. But meanwhile I'm having plenty of fun with my 250.

I hadn't realized that the 350 had been out for over 12 years. Maybe I'll have a look at that one when I'm ready.
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Old 02-07-2015
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Re: Question to Catalina 350 owners

TakeFive you know I've liked how much boat they've crammed into the 250, as a trailer-cruiser, I don't think you can hit a sweeter note. I've also liked the Catalina 28, but was unimpressed with the performance. Which lead me to the Beneteau 285 as my next "move up" boat.

While the Catalina 320 isn't exactly a J boat, it's no slouch either, several points faster on portsmouth (80.5) than most of its other 32 foot cruisers. On par with a Beneteau 305 (81), and on par with a J/28 (81 yeah cruiser racer), and only a few higher than the J/30 (76.9)
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Last edited by SHNOOL; 02-07-2015 at 08:09 AM.
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Old 02-09-2015
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Re: Question to Catalina 350 owners

Quote:
Originally Posted by SHNOOL View Post
..............

While the Catalina 320 isn't exactly a J boat, it's no slouch either, several points faster on portsmouth (80.5) than most of its other 32 foot cruisers. On par with a Beneteau 305 (81), and on par with a J/28 (81 yeah cruiser racer), and only a few higher than the J/30 (76.9)
I have to admit I know nothing about portmouth ratings. BUT< there is at least 1-2 min a mile tween a J30 and a C28! I'm 30 secs mile faster than a C28 with my Jeanneau which is inches plus or minus etc than a C28, but 2500 lbs lighter.

IIRC a Cat320 is maybe in the 160-180 rating range. still slower than a J30 by 20-40 secs.

Marty
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