Hei! you have found the full test! Outstanding, that should be paid
Nice test. I share the opinion of the tester: very nice boat in what regards sailing but expensive for its size and with an interior functional but "rudimentary" in what regards warmness and looks.
Paulo, you mentioned that the retailer in France has sold an Opium with some necessary improvments to the rig. What did you mean more specifically, I can not find that particular boat on the web anymore?
The boat was never been in the net and the needed improvements are not in the rig but in the running rigging. Sorry if I was not clear.
What I have said is that if you go the the La Rochelle dealer, he can show you on the La Rochelle port (Minimes) a Rm that has the running rig (and not the rig) modified by them at the demand of a client in the way I think it should be rigged, for working properly.
The standard boat is rigged with the German sheeting and that means that you have to use winches to move and regulate the mainsail (more friction). Boats that use that system, like the Salona 41 have normally two winches on each side of cockpit, one for the front sail, other for the mainsail, but the Opium only has one for each side and that means that you have to change the lines, blocking one, to use the only winch for the two tasks.
I would say that the boat was not thought by the designer to use German sheeting but to use a direct system, like the one you use on the RM 1060. That way you don't need winches for the main sail and can use the ones the boat has on the side exclusively for the front sail.
The boat that is on the Minimes (belonging to a client) has a system like that. It makes sense to me and I would fit it in the boat if I bought one.
The Fox 10.20 looks interesting, and in addition to that they have an 11.60 on the web. Strange that no one else has a 11.50, everybody goes from 10.50 to 12.50. For me the 11.50, like the Opium, would be the perfect size.
The Opium 39 has 11.47m, the Elan 38 has 11.44m, the Comet 38 has 11.40m the Pacer 376 has 11.48 m. I don't think that the most popular size above 10.50 is 12.50, but 11.99, to escape to pay on European Marinas the extra charge for boats over 12.00m. You have plenty boats with that size including the RM 1200 and the Dufour 40e.
I agree with you, probably the best compromise for a solo sailor that wants to live aboard is about 11.50. Space enough for living comfortably but small enough to be easily maneuvered in the marina and also smaller sails to handle in a blow, not to mention smaller maintenance bills.