My first sailboat: Paceship 26 or Tartan 30? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 27 Old 12-06-2009 Thread Starter
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My first sailboat: Paceship 26 or Tartan 30?

Greetings! This is my first post, but I have been doing research on this forum for the past few months however. I am preparing to purchase my first Good Old Boat and I have narrowed it down to two boats, both with some minor flaws (I hope). My intended use is for overnight camping on the Chesapeake bay with my wife and two teenage daughters and possibly a longer trip once a year. Any advice?

Here are my contenders:

1. 1976 Tartan 30 - Interior and Exterior both look great. Has dodger and bimini. There is one small soft spot on the deck. I thought that these were not cored decks, but the owner said it was. No roller furling. No shore power hook up. The atomic 4 engine looked in good condition and just had carb rebuilt. The main issue I see with this boat is that there is a small amount of seperation between the lead ballast (fin keel) and the rest of the keel. The owner stated the the yard mechanic said the bolts cannot be tightened further. He has been filling in a little whenever he paints the boat. It just looks like a 1/2 inch seem between the two. Is this a big issue?

2. 197X Paceship 26 - This boat is in great shape. Has bimini but no dodger. 5 year old Yanmar 1 cylinder 10hp diesel with low hours. Roller furling. beautifully maintained interior (both boats have minor leaks). This boat has an iron keel and there is a small area of rust at the leading edge that the owner does some maintenance on every year. Very nice boat and a little cheaper than the Tartan!

I am really torn between the two and if I can elimnate one and just get the survey on the other, that would save me some money. The wife really likes the Paceship and I am leaning toward the larger Tartan if the keel is not a big issue. Either way, I am excited to be taking the plunge!
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post #2 of 27 Old 12-06-2009
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With two teenage daughters, I know from experience that bigger is better. The Tartan's keel/hull joint, however, with a half inch gap, would give me pause if that's what it is. That much play could mean the keelbolts are getting bent each time the boat hits a wave - again and again and again. Until they break off: goodbye keel & boat. Or perhaps there's a half-inch "gutter" there for fairing compound and it's supposed to be like that. I would find out more on a Tartan bulletin board somewhere. Refastening and rebedding the keel would be the fix. Pricey - if it needs fixing.
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post #3 of 27 Old 12-06-2009
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30ft is better for a family for sure. T30s are in abundance on the Bay. Are you sure you want one with A4 engine? I'd also suggest Pearsons, Oday, erricsons,

Denise, Bristol PA, Oday 30. On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
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post #4 of 27 Old 12-06-2009 Thread Starter
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Paulk and Denise,

Thanks for the responses. I might add a third boat to the mix tomorrow. Im going to see a Bristol 32. The thought of having to do a repair to the keel on the Tartan is scaring my away from that one. But if the Bristol isn't so nice, maybe I'll hire someone to inspect the keel on the Tartan.

Denise - are there a lot of issues with the A4 engine? If it is recently rebuilt, does that make it less of an issue?
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post #5 of 27 Old 12-06-2009
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If it were me, I would keep looking. There is no way I would consider a boat with a half inch gap between the keel and stub, sounds like a disaster waiting to happen. Add to that the Atomic 4 and that cinches the no deal on that Tartan.

As to the Paceship 26, I too think that is way too small for a family of 4 (certainly with 2 teenagers). As others have said, teenagers need their own space and a 36 foot just doesn't have it...

My wife and I sail a 27' and find it barely enough space for more than day sailing. Plan accordingly.

Joe McCary,
Sailing on The Central Chesapeake Bay, West River, MD on my Catalina 27, Aelous II with my wife and friends.
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post #6 of 27 Old 12-06-2009
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The T30 is a desireable classic, and a far better sailor IMHO than the Paceship or Bristol. The T30 is built like a tank, I'd consider it unlikely the keel is sperating unless the lead has obvious damage from abuse. Do you really mean that it is loose, or has some filler come out of the keel/hull joint, creating the apprearance of a crack? This condition is quite common on fin keel boats...Not to say this boat can't be a problem, just not likely, and worth getting a professional opinion on. The T30 is a sweetheart of a sailboat.

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post #7 of 27 Old 12-07-2009 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingfool View Post
The T30 is a desireable classic, and a far better sailor IMHO than the Paceship or Bristol. The T30 is built like a tank, I'd consider it unlikely the keel is sperating unless the lead has obvious damage from abuse. Do you really mean that it is loose, or has some filler come out of the keel/hull joint, creating the apprearance of a crack? This condition is quite common on fin keel boats...Not to say this boat can't be a problem, just not likely, and worth getting a professional opinion on. The T30 is a sweetheart of a sailboat.
It is definately not loose. I contacted the owner to get more information on it and I'm going to find someone to get a second opinion. The owner assures me it is not an issue.

Anyone know any good surveryors in the Annapolis area?
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post #8 of 27 Old 12-07-2009
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I like the Paceship.

It is really a 27 foot vessel and has a lot of room compared to most 26 inside. of the two it sounds to be in much better condition and if it suits your needs is the better boat.

In all reality if you have two teenage daughters you need not worry too much about sleeping four people on the boat. Unless your daughters are avid sailors they will be unlikely to accompany you often especially overnight. Usually they have "sleepover" plans that are much more fun than spending a night camping with mom and Dad....

I come from a family of 7. My parents upgraded from a Spirit 28 to a C&C 36 back in 1981 so they could sleep 6. there was never more than 3 people aboard overnight in the 9 years they owned the boat.

The PY26 was a well built boat and sails reasonably well for a 27 foot boat of its time. is likely an early 70s boat - around 1974.

Mike

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post #9 of 27 Old 12-07-2009
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No opinion on the boat but sailingfool is exactly right below:

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingfool View Post
...I'd consider it unlikely the keel is sperating unless the lead has obvious damage from abuse. Do you really mean that it is loose, or has some filler come out of the keel/hull joint, creating the apprearance of a crack? This condition is quite common on fin keel boats...
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post #10 of 27 Old 12-07-2009
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First of all, both are boats that I like a lot as well rounded good sailing designs. Both are good boats for the Chesapeake, but of the two, if the prices are close together, I would definitely buy the Tartan 30 which is a very superior boat all around.

Of course, that is dependent on the keel situation. Without a careful examination there is no way for anyone, let alone us on the forum to tell you what is going on with the keel. As speculated, the gap may only be an issue with the fairing material. On the other hand, it could be something far more serious. I would seriously doubt that the owner would know whether this is a more serious problem. And just because this only visible on the Tartan does not mean that a similar problem does not exist on the Paceship.

Both boats are old enough that thier keel boats could be shot. They are both of an age, where it is prudent to lower the keel away from the keel stub, clean out the joint, inspect the keel bolts carefully and rebed the joint. If prior owners have not done this already you need to think of this as standard long term maintenance on a boat this age. Its not all that expensive to do but it is critical to the safety of the boat.

As to the Atomic 4, I have had great luck with these engines. Properly maintained they are very reliable and easier and cheaper to work on than most diesels. But they do require some mechanical skills. If you are reasonably knowledgable about how engines work and reasonably good at working on engines, then these are a great engine for a first time boat owner. But if you do not trust your mechanical skills, then perhaps it would be better to look for a boat with a diesel instead.

There are a lot of very good marine surveyors in the Annapolis area. Given the potential structural issues with the keel I would suggest someone like Jack Hornor (Marine Survey & Design Co) , Steven Uhthoff, or Peter Hartoff, who are all very experienced surveryors and understand structural issues on boats this age.

If you do proceed with the Tartan you will need to include as a part of your offer permission to remove fairing and caulking materials at the keel joint as a part of the survey. Contracts for purchase typically are conditional on being able to survey the boat but limit surveys to non-destructive examinations. Removing caulk or fairing material would be considered destructive examination. Since you can't tell much aboput what is going on without removing these materials then you will need permission to do so. Your offer will also have to stipulate that you will be responsible for recaulking or fairing those areas where you have removed materials, whether or not you buy the boat. If the owner balks then walk away and keep looking.

Good luck,
Jeff


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Last edited by Jeff_H; 12-07-2009 at 12:37 PM.
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