Bristol 35.5 vs. Sabre 36 - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 10-30-2009
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Bristol 35.5 vs. Sabre 36

I have narrowed my boat search down to the Bristol 35.5 and Sabre 36. Their current prices are well within my budget, leaving some $$ for upgrades and repairs. The boat will be used for club racing and coastal cruising, and based in Oriental, NC, so the keel/cb is the only option. The Bristol seems to do well here in the club PHRF races, but there are no Sabres in the club. Also, I cannot find any reviews of the Sabre. Was it not a popular boat? Any thoughts on these two with regard to racing and cruising would be most appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 10-30-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willym3x View Post
I have narrowed my boat search down to the Bristol 35.5 and Sabre 36. Their current prices are well within my budget, leaving some $$ for upgrades and repairs. The boat will be used for club racing and coastal cruising, and based in Oriental, NC, so the keel/cb is the only option. The Bristol seems to do well here in the club PHRF races, but there are no Sabres in the club. Also, I cannot find any reviews of the Sabre. Was it not a popular boat? Any thoughts on these two with regard to racing and cruising would be most appreciated. Thanks.
Sabres are well regarded boats as are the Bristol's and I don't think the lack of a review on the 36 is related to any issue with the boat other than there aren't tons of them out there. There is a review of the Sabre 34 by Jack Hornor on the BoatUS site which should give a good idea how the boat is built and potential problem areas since the 36 is very similar.

Looking at the PHRF for the Chesapeake the one Sabre 36 with a rating is rated 30 seconds a mile faster than the one Bristol 35.5.

Either way I think you end up with a very very nice boat. The Sabre 36 was high on my list and we looked at a couple of them, but I was overruled and we're now satisfied with our Catalina 36, which in reality, fits our use better than the Sabre would have.

HTH and Good luck!
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Buy the nicest, cleanest example of whichever one you find and you will be happy. These are both very nice boats. For example if you find a good clean one that already has a suit of nice racing sails you should seriously consider it. ...will save you money down the road.
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Old 11-01-2009
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We have three Bristol 35.5's in the fleet here, and it seems quite the comfortable and capable cruiser. One owner tells me he's keeping his boat on a trial basis. If it passes the trial, he'll keep it for another twenty years. Is the Sabre you're looking at newer than the Bristol? Any older boat will likely have some issues that will need attending to at some point: engine, hoses, rigging, etc. The older boat will perhaps need them sooner. The Bristols here don't race, even against the Tartan 37's. If you're interested in racing, the Sabre is likely the better performer. 30 seconds per mile is a lot in the light air you get on the Chesapeake, and it could also make cruising under sail in the Sabre more pleasant than motoring in the Bristol.
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Old 11-01-2009
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Sabre is the better racer by far. Both are good quality boats and you cant go wrong with either. By the best boat you survey

If it were my money and everything was equal I would buy the Sabre

Dave
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