Looked at a 1981 Hughes 31' This Weekend - SailNet Community
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 6 Old 10-13-2009 Thread Starter
Junior Member
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 7
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
Question Looked at a 1981 Hughes 31' This Weekend

Spent saturday morning looking at a 1981 Sparkman and Stephens designed 31' Hughes. This was the first sailboat I've looked at to purchase so I have nothing really to compare it with (purchase-wise).

Minor water damage in the cabin due to a chainplate leaking, forward hatch leaks as well. It has a Diesel and not the gas saildrive. The boat has been on the hard for 2 years and I don't think the Diesel has been fired up since. The owner lives out of state and the broker didn't want to bother the yard to see if it would fire up. No batteries installed in the boat, so I couldnt check any of the existing lights/electronics for operation. I say electronics, but it really had none installed. A VHF radio and thats about it. Rigging and the sails were in good shape.

The one thing that did catch my eye was the narrow cockpit and how far aft the helm is. Either sitting or standing behind the wheel my head hits the backstay. Being on other boats in the 28' to 33' never seemed to be a problem that I noticed. Is this just the way this boat is designed? Would like be annoying underway? It was in the yard!

Any opinions or thoughts on this Hughes would be greatly appreciated.

Ima90sJezus is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 6 Old 10-13-2009
Last Man Standing
smackdaddy's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 15,759
Thanks: 182
Thanked 177 Times in 170 Posts
Rep Power: 10
Hey Ima - for me, I'd say if something bugged you on the first hour aboard (the helm/backstay issue) - that's a real sign. Just remember that it will never get better. Maybe you can learn to live with it - but I'd listen to my gut.

S/V Dawn Treader - 1989 Hunter Legend 40
smackdaddy is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #3 of 6 Old 10-13-2009
Senior Member
blt2ski's Avatar
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 7,068
Thanks: 1
Thanked 35 Times in 34 Posts
Rep Power: 12
I'd be listenng to my gut on more than one issue........is the leak fixed? not that the backstay hitting your head is an issue, but it will not go away. Now if you are sitting off to the side most of the time, not an issue.

This does not sound like the boat for you. You seem to have found too many faults with this one. Now the same brand with "ONLY" lets say the back stay issue, no leakage issues. one that is sailing, motor works etc, The only thing you can find wrong is the color of the boot stripes........boot stripes are easy to change out from red to blue or black or pink with purple polka dots!


She drives me boat,
I drives me dinghy!
blt2ski is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #4 of 6 Old 10-13-2009
Just another Moderator
Faster's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
Posts: 17,429
Thanks: 119
Thanked 385 Times in 365 Posts
Rep Power: 10
In today's market you can do better than that boat. I'm betting the price is attractive.... as you can see, for a reason.

I think construction is fairly robust from what I've heard, but I think they missed the boat on the cabin design, and the extreme pinched ends will always create challenges for the cockpit area. You also have to like the fairly severe tumblehone hull shape (some do, some don't)

I'd keep looking for now.


1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
Faster is online now  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #5 of 6 Old 10-13-2009
Senior Member
Tanley's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Boston
Posts: 264
Thanks: 0
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Rep Power: 7
w/ SmackDaddy on this one. We looked at a Sabre 28 where both the traveler and backstay would hit your head when either sitting or standing at the helm. Other than that , the rest of the boat was immaculate. Walked away because that one problem would always be there.
Tanley is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #6 of 6 Old 10-16-2009 Thread Starter
Junior Member
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 7
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
Thank all..

Thank you for all your thoughts, I'm still undecided - The Seller is basically throwing it at me. This would be my first boat and maybe I'm just being too cautious.. I'm looking at a Coronado 35 this weekend, and from the looks of it it on here, that isn't a popular boat either.

I figure it doesn't hurt to look and at least I have the experience to put towards looking in the future.

Ima90sJezus is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook

Quick Reply

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Evaluating a Hughes Northstar 38 Jim H Boat Review and Purchase Forum 50 09-26-2015 12:47 PM
Hughes Sailboats bootsy1962 General Discussion (sailing related) 30 02-24-2015 04:08 PM
Looking for info on Hughes 29 (1972) quicksilver Boat Review and Purchase Forum 6 02-12-2010 07:11 PM
Full Moon for this weekend!! Bill Mc General Discussion (sailing related) 6 10-05-2006 02:38 AM
Chesapeake weekend trip- NEED ONE PERSON on Short Notice!! FarFromHome Crew Wanted/Available 1 06-20-2006 11:08 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome