1986 PS Dana vs 1998 PS Dana - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 11-20-2009
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1986 PS Dana vs 1998 PS Dana

We have a chance to buy either. Without benefit of a survey, the older one will need some work, cleaning, repplace halyards,etc. The asking prices are 1986 $50,000 / 1998 $70,000. I don't intend to pay asking price. My question, the older one or the newer one? if price doesn't matter and considering a full survey will be done.
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Old 11-20-2009
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Thats 12 year gap...for only $20k. On the data you've provided, I'd go for the newer one and negotiate the gap.

That being said, you've given very little data to make the right decision. Please give more info...like how these boats have been cruised, hours on the auxillary, general overall condition, what upgrades have been done over the year, full equipment lists, etc.

The quality of your data will help get you a better opinion from this board.
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Dana 1986 vs 1998

Thanks, we will catalog the equipment, engine hours, etc on each this weekend.
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Old 11-20-2009
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We previously owned a 1986 Dana.

There is tremendous commonality from year to year between these boats, so overall condition/wear and tear/maintenance/upgrades would be the most important factors.

That said, some improvements were introduced into the line as time went on. The '86 will have the older style oval bronze portlights, the '98 will have the newer rectangular ones. I prefer the aesthetics of the ovals, but without going into details in my opinion the rectangular portlights are a much superior design.

Around 1988/89/90 or so, a new style electrical panel was introduced. There is nothing wrong with the old style panel, but I find the new style panel has a cleaner and better organized appearance. Behind the panel, the wiring seems tidier also (although, again, PSC is known for good wiring on all their models across the years -- provided owners haven't made too many "improvements" )

Also in that same time period, PSC introduced vinylester resin into the hull laminate. This type of resin provides much superior blister resistance. The older polyester-resin boats, like virtually any boat made with that resin, could experience some blistering. We had a few dime-size little ones on our Dana hull. They were no big deal and easily dealt with.

Beyond that, I would look at which optional features the boat includes. There was an option for a second water tank in the port aft cockpit locker. In the '86 time period, kerosene stove/ovens were standard, with propane an option. The propane option added a propane tank locker at the aft end of the port cockpit locker. If the boat has both the second water tank and propane options, that locker will begin to get tight. Later boats all went to propane as standard.

Other options on deck include double anchor rollers at the bow, and a third anchor roller at the stern with its own through-deck hawse hole and rode locker. Roller furling, cutter rig gear (forestay, staysail, sheet lead tracks on the coachroof, sometimes running backstays) are all expensive to add later if the boat doesn't have it.

Belowdecks, it's nice to have the optional cabinets outboard of the settees, at leas ton one side or the other, anyway. Also, there are some fold-up counter extensions that are nice to have too. AC shore power is very desirable, our boat even had "shore water" hook-up.

Refrigeration is handy, but I would hope to see a battery/charging upgrade to power that. Our boat originally had 2xGroup24s with a 55 amp alternator. We upgraded to 2xGrp31s with an externally regulated high-output 70 amp alternator, with a smart battery charger (off shore power).

Sorry to ramble on. I'll close by mentioning that in my experience, later boats tended to be much more "heavily optioned". Most of those options are nice to have, and are expensive to add.
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Last edited by JohnRPollard; 11-20-2009 at 08:54 PM. Reason: typos
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Old 11-20-2009
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Great information, John.

I'm with you on the portlights - I love the look of the old PSCs with oval ports, but the rectangular ones they're using now are very high quality.
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Old 11-20-2009
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If you were looking at say these neither looks bad and the older has a ton of stuff BUT none of it is dated and it all seems well aged compared to the newer boat
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Old 11-24-2009
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Thank you John. You have a wealth of knowledge. We looked again at both boats. We will probably make an offer on the 1998 Dana. Mostly because the 1986 has some owner added add-ons, that I would have to remove(heat/AC, and some others and an alcohol stove that I would replace). I don't mind doing all work that is needed on the 1986 model, but ripping things out and making the boat look like it should will take time, I would have to retire, hmmm.) Any how if the 1998 Dana doesn't like my offer, I will go for the 1986, and start collecting retirement pay.
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