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winslow59 11-26-2003 02:09 PM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
Like many who visit here, I am seeking advice and recommendations to help with my search for a sailboat.

I was re-introduced to sailing as an adult while working in the San Francisco Bay Area. I was invited out on a wooden Folkboat...and fell in love -- the looks, the feel, the sailing in the bay. That''s my reference point.

I want a boat of a similar size (let''s say 22-28 ft), but probably fiberglass. My situation is such that I will have to leave the boat for extended periods of time (3-6-12 months) so I don''t think a 40+ year old woody would be the best choice. My home waters are the Pacific Northwest -- that means frequent light air days. So, maybe a sailboat that benefits from the design & performance advances of the last 50+ years. Simple, but comfortable interior. I don''t expect, or really want standing headroom (I''m about 6''2") or an enclosed head. Room for reading & listening to music, basic cooking, and sleeping accomodations for 2 is fine -- good looking, fast & fun to sail (for 1 or 2), well designed & built, with comfortable camping accommodations. Outboard expected, inboard diesel OK. Trailerable would be a plus. Prepared to spend $25,000 - would be extremely happy (relieved?) to find what I want for less and might go to $40,000 for something really special.

Some that come to mind - not one is exactly right and they are all different from one another. But, they represent a starting point. Comments? Additions?

Folkboat, fiberglass

Express 27 (Carl Schumacher)

Ultimate 24 or 27 (Jim Antrim)

Wega24 11-26-2003 02:42 PM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
I have your boat !
wanna see some pics ...

go to and than click My Story

Its gonna be a little cheaper than 25 ... too, which doesnt hurt. But its not cheap !


e-27 sailor 11-28-2003 12:10 PM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
While the Express 27 will more than fill your day-sailing needs, the creature comforts are minimal. And at 2450# you''ll need a pretty calm achorage if you sleep aboard. From whay you described, the Laser 28 is probably better suited.

newuser 11-28-2003 02:42 PM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
If you''re going to be away from the boat that long, frequently I''d go for a trailerabel boat so you can put her in/out withour a lot of expenses.

I''d venture that the three boats you mention met few of your criteria! Skip ''em.

The make I like in that size range are S2s - excellent performance, nice designs, good construction, and trailerable. I used to race on a S2 6.9 (22'') and it was a pleasure to sail. If you want to start small and less expensive, generally a good approach, look at the 6.7/6.9 if you want more room at still below your budget starting price, look at the 7.9.

Check if you want to know more about these boats.

Advice - whatever you buy, buy a premium condition boat and happily pay a premium price as needed - avoid the fixer-ups and "good deals" and "below book value" boats until you have a beeter idea how ruinously expensive it is to fix up a boat.

Good luck.


winslow59 12-02-2003 07:54 AM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
Thorsten -
nice looking boat. With the family history, I''m surprised you''d be willing to let her go.

e-27 sailor -
thanks for your input. The Express 27 really interests me -- right price range, trailerable, Schumacher design. The problem: I''ve never seen one in person. On the west coast they seem to be concentrated in the Bay Area. Just how ''minimal'' are the accommodations? Are they difficult to sail singlehanded or with a just 2 people (designed/intended to have crew to handle sails, provide weight on the rail?) I hadn''t thought of how displacement would effect comfort in an anchorage...

The Laser 28 is interesting. I''ve been on one, but not sailing. In my experience, they''re not often found for sale in the northwest.

sailingfool -
I''m getting more & more interested in the trailering idea. Maybe not dry sailing, but at least the capacity to pull the boat out for extended storage or to relocate to another place. Slip prices and availabilty are heading in different directions - and not in my favor. I don''t know anything about the ''S'' boats - I''ll do some homework.

All -
still open the other suggestions.
The Alerion-Express 28 looks like a good fit - except for price...

e-27 sailor 12-02-2003 11:43 AM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
Wall, the Express 27 can be single-handed easily with a #4 jib, or a #3 in 10-15K, and the rig is easily de-powered with backstay, vang & cunningham. I routinely sail mine in & out of the slip. Down below, you have knee-walking room (about 4 1/2'' head clearence) with a 6 1/2'' forepeak, porta-poti, bulkhead, nav station to strb, cabinet/sink to port, two 4''slat benches on each side, followed by two pipe births under the cockpit, with outboard motor stored between the pipe births under the footwell. A 36 qt cooler is used for the cabin step. The cockpit will seat 5 comfortably. I think you''ll find that the Alerion Express 28 is vary similar, but with a inboard engine, and better set-up for single-handed day sailing.

Wega24 12-02-2003 06:04 PM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
well you are right I hate to sell her....

BUT the wife wants to fully stand up and the boat is only feet, so she has to bend her head down while walking from front to rear. If the hatch is open than you can stand up , but the head is a little too far away for cooking....
Also she wants a real head, versus a porta potty ( well I am the one who is running and emptying it, but she thinks that a "real" head is better. I dissagree, as I am the one who has to fix it. Porta Pottyes never )

It seems that we spend a lot of time on the boat, and we both enjoy it. For the limited experience we are doing very well racing the boat as well. The phrf rating is somewaht a present ( as the boat is not listed anywhere, lol ) so we time over faster boats quite easily, however I have to admit that I wouldnt mind sailing with the fast boys up front.
The trailer is first class, built for german autobahns
I really like to have a trailer boat, as I can switch marinas in a heartbeat and can go with lower prices. Besides over the winter the boat is housed in my heated warehouse...

Just scuffed the vc 17 today, for a new fast paintjob for the next season.

I am looking for a Capri 26, Finn keel, inboard, and trailer ... is there one for sale in your area, might want to trade.
With one tear in my eye, but you need to keep the ladies happy..

Thanks Thorsten

Jeff_H 12-03-2003 02:28 AM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
If you want to race you would be much better off buying a Capri 25 than the 26. That said, a Capri 25 has about the same headroom as a Express 27 and was no where near as well constructed. The Capri is an easier boat to race under PHRF and offers better light air performance. If you want headroom and a real head then you should try to find a Laser 28.


BigZ 12-08-2003 05:07 PM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
You might add a Ranger 26 to your list. This Gary Mull design from the early 70s is a good performer with basic "camping" facilities below. The boat is easily handled by one person and you could probably find one for well below 10k. It would definitely perform better than a folkboat, but probably not as perky as the Ultimate or Express boats. Headroom is limited, but the facilities are not too bad for a weekend experience. A good boat for a good price, if you can find one in decent condition.
While it is not considered trailerable, I think what you are looking for is something that can be placed on a trailer by a travellift then hauled to someones backyard, or other reasonable storage area; not a boat that is necessarily launched from a ramp. I don''t think you are really looking for a boat that can be launched from a ramp.

Other reasonable options might include Cal 25 or Bill Tripp designed Columbia 26.
Good luck.

mwolf7 12-11-2003 05:48 AM

recommend small (22-28'''') performance sailboat
Have a look at the Hunter 28. There are two similar models, the 28 and the 28.5. I own a 1989 Hunter 28. It''s sweet looking, has wheel steering, awesome room (I am 6''1) and hold''s it resale value.

Email me if you want to see pics of my boat, Wu Wei.

Matt Wolf
S/V Wu Wei - H28

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