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post #1 of 17 Old 01-15-2003 Thread Starter
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hunter vc mac

what is the general consensus about Hunter 260 vs Macgregor 26? It seems that the Hunters cost more, and the 260 (most equivalent to the 26x) is larger than the legal beam width for legal trailering in many states. It seems like there is less interior room also. In return, it seems like a better constructed boat, and probably sails better. The Mac is billed as a power boat also, while there is no mention of this on the Hunter website with regards to the 260. It seems you cannot put a motor greater than 10hp on the Hunter, and therefore, what value is it to have water ballast, except for lower trailer weight? It doesn''t seem like you can make faster time to a distant sailing site.

What do you experts think? I am a novice looking to purchase my first boat, and need something that can do a number of things. This boat will see action in the mid gulf coast.

Thanks!

Jeff
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post #2 of 17 Old 01-16-2003
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hunter vc mac

No boat can do everything. The more things you try to design into a boat the poorer it will do everything. The Mac will be a poor sailboat and a poor powerboat. If you really want to sail buy the Hunter. If you want a powerboat then buy one. There are also better choices than the Hunter. Sailboats other than dingys are displacement boats. This means their maximun speed is limited and adding extra horsepower will do little or no good. In order to make the Mac go they have designed it to plane. This is not the type of hull you would want to take into the Gulf. As to the water ballast, the reduction in trailering weight is an important factor to anyone who intends to do so. The Mac concept is an idea that no other sailboat builder has chosen to use. Think about that.
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post #3 of 17 Old 01-16-2003
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hunter vc mac

You may want to look at a Catalina 250 (water ballast version). Good trailerable, very roomy inland lake and protected water boat. Those who sail coastal waters do so on good weather days.
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post #4 of 17 Old 01-16-2003
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hunter vc mac

Water ballast in a trailerable boat is solely for weight reduction when trailing.

A new H260 is certainly more expensive than a Mac, but I find it hard to imagine the Mac having more interior room. My H26 (older version of the 260) has 5''7" headroom, which to my knowledge is the most in any trailerable boat. I know people with Mac''s, though not the 26x, that go ga-ga when they see the inside of my boat. One, with a 25, won''t even let his wife see mine, cause he knows she''ll want one.

The Catalina, while similar in layout, does have less headroom. Though both the Hunter and Catalina have "poptops" for increased headroom at dock or anchor.

If you want a sailboat, get the Hunter or Catalina. The only redeeming aspect of the Mac, IMHO, is it''s cost. Though, I will say, any boat is better than no boat .

Fair winds,
John
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post #5 of 17 Old 01-16-2003 Thread Starter
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hunter vc mac

All of your opinions are much appreciated! I understand that the mac may not be much of a sailor but I also know that I cannot afford two separate boats. I guess it''s a philasophical question. I probably need to get out on some of these boats and see for myself. One thing I am curious about, though. Many people have suggested that the Mac uses light tackle and that it is not a sturdy boat. Looking at it in person, it doesn''t really LOOK strong. but I have never read anything about horror stories from people who have had problems. Is this because people are just careful with this model? Why don''t I see posts about people claiming structural failures or other problems?


Sailmc: is this what you are getting at when you say that this is not the type of boat I want to take out on the gulf?

Thanks again,

Jeff
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post #6 of 17 Old 01-16-2003
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hunter vc mac

Jeff, you don''t hear many horror stories about boats suffering structural failure, because most people understand the weaknesses and limitations of their boats, and they use them within their limitations. Some boats, like McGregors, smaller Hunters and smaller Catalinas are designed for inland lake sailing and fair weather coastal cruising. The hardware, design, and construction techniques that they use are not as robust as you would want on a boat in a storm at sea. Other boats are designed to withstand anything the wind and waves can throw at them. They are much more sturdily built, and they are likewise much more expensive. Putting a small fair-weather coastal cruiser at the mercy of big winds and stormy seas is foolish.

In a recent incident, a Mac 26x reportedly capsized, and 2 children were drowned. The boat supposedly wasn''t being used they way it was designed, but most boats are designed to forgive us sailors for our occasional stupidity. The Mac 26x might not have been forgiving enough.

For people who feel that they must have one boat to use for sailing and powerboating, the Mac 26x fills that niche. But its performance, both as a sailboat and as a powerboat, will be un-satisfying. You really should get experience with both, and decide between them.

The speed and noise of powerboating can be appealing at first to some people, but after you run up and down the lake a few times, it gets old. Learning how to use the wind to make a boat go where you want is a mystery that never gets old.
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post #7 of 17 Old 01-16-2003
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hunter vc mac

I have seen at least two stories of what sounded like pretty major structural failures with Mac''s in the past year or so. Without being there and seeing these boats, its hard to say what actually happened though.

Jeff
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post #8 of 17 Old 02-09-2003
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hunter vc mac

I work with 2 Mac26x owners. One loves his, but only uses it occasionally, and always in protected waters. The other hated his so much that he sold it after 3 months. He later bought a power boat. I have a Catalina 250 Water Ballast. There are some people who have mastered the setup of the C250 and can get it off the trailer and ready to sail in about 45 minutes. I am not one of them. I keep mine in a slip, and only trailer it for haul out or an occasional distant road trip. I am comfortable taking it out off-shore, but only if the weather is nice and the seas are relatively calm (2-4 feet). My wife and I have spent a week at a time cruising the ICW with no complaints.
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post #9 of 17 Old 12-09-2006
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Hunter 260 vs Max 26

You should spend some time browsing the hunterowners.com website. This subject is extensively covered.

Also, you might benefit from visiting this site:

http://kobernus.com/hunter260/index.html
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post #10 of 17 Old 12-09-2006
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Gkobernus...you just responded to a 3 year old post. You can avoid this in the future by clicking SEE NEW POSTS in the top right corner when you log on.
Welcome aboard!
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