Perfect 35-38 foot 'go anywhere' boat - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 57 Old 01-16-2010 Thread Starter
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Perfect 35-38 foot 'go anywhere' boat

Refining my shortlist (seems to keep getting longer!) for buying a 35-38 footer. My requirements in this order are: absolutely uncompromising seaworthiness; sufficient space for family with two small children on a circumnavigation; total budget of approx 100K; decent 'salty' looks. My standard for the seaworthiness is that she should be capable of a Cape Horn passage -- still a dream for us, but the option should be there. The flip side is we don't necessarily want a tank -- we want a sailing boat. On space, we need good forward cabin area for the children plus some sort of quarter berth though not necessarily a fulltime double since we parents will often be living out of the saloon. The budget means approx 80-85K for max purchase assuming that even a clean boat will need 20K in near term upgrades to rigging etc. The ideal would be 70K but for the perfect boat we'd go much higher. We are pretty traditional in sense large motor, lot of electronics, watermaker, freezer and other wizardry does not interest.

So here's my list. If anyone can comment would be MOST grateful.

1. Freya 39 (good ocean boat, problem is there are none about)
2. Valiant 37; possibly a blistered Valiant 40.
3. PSC37
4. Rafiki 37 (to my mind a superior version of the Tayanas etc. Good ballast/displ ratio plus there's no annoying bowsprit).
5. Wauquiez Pretorien 35 (really not beautiful, but SO capable and practical).
6. Bayfield 36 (good specs, not to mention pretty, but very little owner feedback out on the web, so hard to gauge).
7. Shannon 38 (certainly lots of good history, but looks something like a more expensive version of the Bayfield).
8. Morgan 384 (really good value and good sailing though I understand there are construction questions over the hull-deck joint and bulwarks).

So quite a range. I'm nothing if not open minded! Thank you again.
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post #2 of 57 Old 01-16-2010
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southern cross 35 or 39. everything you'll need and in your price range if you don't mind a 80s model.
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post #3 of 57 Old 01-16-2010
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I think you list makes sense for the most part. The Shannon is more expensive for a reason as far as I know though. I think it is a better built boat than a Bayfield especially for the southern route. You don't say where you are as that will have some bearing on the boats available. There is a steel Freya in San Francisco for sale. Rafiki in Hawaii. PSC 37 or Valiant are excellent choices. Pretorien shouldn't be hard to find and many have been offshore. Not sure of the Morgan.

Living aboard in Victoria Harbour
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post #4 of 57 Old 01-16-2010
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Of the vessels on your list, I would guess that you can find a number of PSC 37's to look at on the market. I had my eye on a few last winter...

I think your budget may be a bit low, for your goals

Here's another, not on your list but worthy...Passports.
There's one laying in

1985 Passport Sail Boat For Sale -

That this vessel...that did a circumnavigation a few years ago

Dream Catcher

Last edited by tempest; 01-16-2010 at 10:40 PM.
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post #5 of 57 Old 01-16-2010
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Bayfield has an active owners group, bayfieldyachts : Bayfield Yacht Owner Resources

I spent about 10 days getting my son's B36 ready to go offshore and then about 5-6 days crossing from FL to West End, Bahamas and on to Nassau via Berry Is. I was very impressed with the build quality and the sailing characteristics of the boat, and the space inside is really impressive. I wouldn't hesitate to take one on a major crossing, the off wind tracking by windvane is great. For a 36 with a full keel I thought the speed was very good and the motion comfort was superb even in 6' short waves coming from the aft quarter. Nice boat, easily handled.

SV Laurie Anne

1988 Brewer 40 Pilothouse

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post #6 of 57 Old 01-17-2010
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Here is #1 on your list. Initial cost is low............
Freya 39 Full-Keel Project Sailboat
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post #7 of 57 Old 01-17-2010
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A second vote for the Passport 40.... pretty, solid and a decent performer to boot.

In a similar vein:

Reliance 37 RELIANCE 37 Sailboat details on (units English)

Passport 37 PASSPORT 37 Sailboat details on (units English)

And here's a listing of pretty well all Robert Perry's designs...

Sailboat Designs of Robert*Perry


1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)

Last edited by Faster; 01-17-2010 at 09:25 AM.
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post #8 of 57 Old 01-17-2010
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Check the Tayana 37 as well.
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post #9 of 57 Old 01-17-2010
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I liked your list but I would trade the Wauquiez Pretorian in for a Wauquiez Hood 38, which I think would be a much better boat for your purpose.
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post #10 of 57 Old 01-17-2010
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The list and other suggestions all represent good candidates.

One observation I have relates to your comment that you and your wife will be "living out of the salon." It's been my experience that this works fine for shorter duration trips, like weekends and 1-2 week vacations. But it does get old after a while.

That salon space is the primary communal living space for the family, where all the normal daily routines/activities take place. When it does double duty as a sleeping cabin for half the crew, then your enjoyment of that space greatly diminishes. Not to mention the hassle of converting it back and forth, morning and evening, day after day after day after day...

My suggestion would be to focus on a design that provides at least two dedicated sleeping cabins (see for instance, the Passport 42 linked above), that allow privacy and compartmentalization.
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