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climber322 01-01-2003 05:43 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
Hi all,
We''re looking for specific makes/models of used boats in the 28 to 34 foot range capable of off shore passage making.
Boats that are strong, comfortable for extended cruising, relativly quick with a moderate displacement without requiring a lottery winner''s budget. We''re trying to get the opinions of the many here who''ve been there, done that.
Thank you all in advance for your help.

kimberlite 01-01-2003 06:59 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
where are you planning to go from- to offshore?

Jeff_H 01-02-2003 02:47 AM

passage making 28-32 footer
To really answer your question properly, one needs a bit more information than you have provided. For example, how many people will you be cruising with? What is your idea of not requiring a lottery winner''s budget? (You''d be surprised at the wide range of budgets people seem to consider moderate.) Where are you planning to go ''offshore''? How much sailing experience do you have? and so on.


climber322 01-02-2003 12:45 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
W''e like to purchase a boat from the Great Lakes region, sail Lake Michigan until we can outfit her to our likes, then off to the Bahamas, St. Thomas, and then where ever strikes our fancy. Our limit for initial purchase would be around 30-40K knowing systems will have to be gone thru/replaced, etc. Our goal at this time is to be gone in five years. We''d like to hear from those who know of or are sailing boats this size offshore, their recomendations, etc.

Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

olson34 01-06-2003 11:17 AM

passage making 28-32 footer
You should look into a Cascade 29. These have done tens of thousands of sea miles. Built in the NW, but rather widely distributed around the country nowadays. They are "small" for their length, but tough and seaworthy. An offshore delivery skipper in my YC has owned and cruised one for a couple of decades. Check a recent copy of Good Old Boat for a review. The builder is still (!) in business. URL is:

I have no financial interest; just live in the same area.

WHOOSH 01-06-2003 12:46 PM

passage making 28-32 footer

It sounds like you want a boat that will come down the East Coast via the Barge Canal & Hudson River, you''ll be leaving from Florida in the late Fall for the Bahamas, and then wind your way down to the Virgins using the many techniques and solid recommendations of Bruce VanSant in his _Passages South_. And at that point, you''ll want your boat capable of taking you down to Trinidad, or perhaps across the Central Caribbean to see Guatemala, the Honduran islands, and Belize.

Your boat will be quite basic by today''s standards (meaning it can be comfortable, safe and well equipped to motor, sail and anchor...but forget about most of the trappings you see in the CW interior shots). You''ll have the ideal size to make cruising less work and more fun than it will be for most of the other cruisers you meet along the way. It most likely will not be a stock boat as we refer to them here, but rather one that has already been upgraded some and been to a few places. Why? Because good solid cruising boats have usually been cruising, because you''ll conclude while doing your research that a lot of money and time can be poured into turning a stock boat into a well set-up cruising boat (which your stated budget does not allow for), and because there will *always* be custom touches and special gear any new owner will add, so what leftover cash and time you''ll have will still be needed. AND because the best thing you can be doing with your boat is sailing it, anchoring it, weekending on it, and generally building skills and an understanding of what you need (vs. what you want - and not tearing it all apart and rebuilding it.

Your boat will be affordable for you because you can find great cruising boats in your price range. Good candiates will seem "small" if you''ve oogled at Hunters and Catalinas at the boat shows, because your perceptions have been calibrated to a bubble-boat design that has tons of beam, lots of hull freeboard, and scant underbody when, in reality, you''ll want more storage room, a simple/functional layout with at least one good sea berth, and a decent place to store the inflatable upside down on deck.

This probably sounds very vague since I''m not whipping off lots of boat designs, but in reality your task is to develop a good sense for what YOU think is important to find on the boat you''re looking for, and that has little to do with specific boat models that were built 20 years ago in a stock configuration. But just to finish up with a few examples, here are three for you to mull on:
1. Albin Ballad 30 - for sale recently on the Great Lakes in superb condition; routinely used for North Sea sailing by Scandanavians - very strong yet light and responsive. Functional simple interior, diesel equipped, and dirt cheap. No one up there seemed to know about it, and it was on the market for a long time.
2. Hallberg Rassy Monsun 31 - an Olle Enderlein design that''s been all over the world. Functional layout, diesel inboard, wonderful sailing boat, simple by today''s standards. (Two good books for you are John Neal''s Log of the Mahina and Mahina Tiare: Pacific Passages, the latter describing a Pacific cruise on a Monsun and both books offering an Appendix on setting up a basic offshore boat). One was recently for sale up your way with a Monitor vane, good stout anchoring gear, and again was very affordable.
3. The Irwin 30 that''s just down the dock from us. (My tonque is in my cheek on this one, since I''m in St. Pete, FL...but read on). Irwins, built in St. Pete, FL, usually were good sailing boats but built poorly/cheaply. The one I''m talking about is a perfect example of the boat I described in the above paragraphs: totally rebuilt by the owner with cruising in mind, now with a small bowsprit, expanded sail plan, fresh paint, functional cockpit and new engine, and he''s finishing up the interior as I write this. And then...he''ll sell it. Has big boat fever and is anchored in a job, seeing himself for now as a liveaboard, not a cruiser. There are boats like this all over the world, and certainly up on the Great Lakes. Your job is to ferret them out...which can be great fun.

Good luck on the search.


climber322 01-06-2003 05:43 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
Thank you to all who''ve responded to my post. Jack, (Whoosh), I''ve seen your posts all over this site, I''ve read quite a few with great interest. No I''m not looking at Hunters, Cats, Pearsons, etc. I''d like something a little more substantial. The dollar figure I mentioned is what I''m limiting myself to for the initial purchase with 20K held in reserve to update systems. I believe in keeping things simple as there will be less, (I believe) maintenance, cost, etc. Yes this boat will be primarily used for Great Lakes sailing for several years until I get a feel for what I need/want on the boat but I''d like the boat to have the ability to sail offshore with safety and a bit of comfort. When the youngest gets out of school the wife, (who thankfully shares my dream) and I would like to sail the Bahamas then continue southbound and hopefully, the South Pacific.
I''m in no hurry and yes I''ve already looked at many boats. I''ve looked at several brokers and have found no Albin''s or HR''s around the Lakes but I''m sure they''re out there. If I can find one already outfitted for cruising all the better. My hope was for those cruisers who might already own boats of this size to recommend specific models that are known to hold up to offshore passage making so I may limit my search to those particular models.
Again, thank you to all who''ve responded. My knowledge base only increases with each post.

climber322 01-06-2003 05:45 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
I did forget to mention my initial budget will be approximatly 40-45K.


ford_s 01-08-2003 02:49 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
Check out the valiant 32. Designed as a moderate displacement passage maker and they are in your price range. If your interested, mine is for sale.

jamo 01-08-2003 02:52 PM

passage making 28-32 footer
I know i may be the only one who cares about the Irwin website thats under construction but I need it now!!!!!! I recently purchased an Irwin 31,on a shoestring and have plans for workoffshore work soon.

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