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Old 05-31-2011
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Advice on a "Pocket cruiser"

I'm a cat sailer getting to old to keep getting thrown in the water.
I'd also like to get a boat I could do weekends in with the family of 4.
I have a Hobie 16 and 18 (with wings ) that I sail a couple of times a month.

I'm looking for a 22-25 foot boat that I'll be keeping in a slip at Bear Lake UT.
I'd like to stay around 10K.
I live in Utah but could travel anywhere in the West to get the boat.

I'm currently looking at
Catalina 250 WB 94', great condition
Catalina 25 80', needs work - I would rather sail than work
Capri 30 83', haven't seen it yet
Ranger 28 ?year haven't seen it yet, has a diesel engine

I'm buying this with a friend who has never sailed and I'll be "teaching" him.
Any thoughts you guys have would be great.

Thanks so much for your help.

Stan

Last edited by Nephidoc; 05-31-2011 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 05-31-2011
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With that budget you should be able to find a decent 22 to 25 footer. Larger (like two you list) will probably mean older and needing more work. Coming from Hobies, you may be disappointed in the performance of some smaller cruising boats. Suggest you consider ones more focused on racing like a J-Boat or C&C. I think you would be happier with the performance.
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Old 05-31-2011
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Hi Stan,

Welcome to Sailnet!

I tend to agree with Jimscal, that some of the more "traditional" pocket cruisers might disappoint in the performance area, especially on a lake. But there seem to be some good candidates on that list you have.

One boat I really like in that size range, is the Beneteau First 235. It might be a bit too tight for overnighting with a family of four, however. Still, maybe take a gander: Beneteau 235

The 235 also seems to have a loyal following: B First 235 Owners Assoc.

There are some larger Firsts from that same era (265, 285), but they are getting beyond trailerable. If trailerability isn't important, then they might be worth a look too.

Good luck, and let us know what you come up with.
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Old 05-31-2011
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The Capri 30 is a performance oriented Catalina.. not a lot of headroom but probably a fun boat. If draft is going to be an issue check that out.

The Ranger 28 can be a bit of a handful in a breeze downwind, it's an IOR influenced design from the mid 70s - the ones (post 76?) with properly balanced rudders are better-mannered. But she's a pretty boat and Mull did a nice job of the tumblehome hull which adds some volume below. Big kites and headsails of that era too....

The Catalina 250 might be a good compromise from your list, and as the newest if it's within budget should maybe be considered on that aspect alone, however it does depend on how well these have all been maintained.

Good luck! and welcome to the board.
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Old 05-31-2011
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Thanks so much for the feedback.

I am leaning towards the Catalina 250.


Stan
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Old 05-31-2011
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I can't remember whether the Catalina 25 has an enclosed marine head or a porta-potti? Lots of folks get by with the porta-pottis, but I have a strong preference for an enclosed head/toilet with holding tank when sailing with family.

Another one from that size-range in the Catalina line-up is the Capri 26. Capri 26 outboard. Also available with an inboard diesel: Capri 26 Inboard Diesel

I've seen the Capris closer to the $10K mark than these two examples above.
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Old 06-03-2011
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I would stay away from a water ballasted boat unless you plan on trailering it often. You lose too much in the way of sailing performance with it. They are just a lot more sluggish than there fixed keel brethren.
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Old 06-03-2011
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I learned to sail on a Hobie 16, moved to the 18 before buying my current boat, a Pearson 30, for the same reasons as you. I missed the performance at first, but there are alot of nice things about a dry boat that you can overnight on. You can still get an adrenaline rush from having the rail in the water. I also enjoy being able to point and go upwind.

I found the Hobie sailing to make be a better sailor. I was already able to think way ahead of a monohull.

I suggest you try and test sail a few of the boats you are looking at to see which ones you like best. Maybe wait a year before you buy so you get a chance to crew on some of the boats.
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Santana 20
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Old 06-04-2011
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Santana 20's are nice boats. In fact it is what I currently sail. If you crammed a family of four on it for even a weekend they would never want to sail with you again. It's primarily a "one design" race boat. It's also nice for weekend day sails for the performance inclined.
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