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SeaQwest 09-01-2012 04:03 PM

Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
Once again I would like to draw on the wealth of knowledge possessed by the members of this forum. We are looking to do some coastal cruising in southwest Florida with an occasional offshore trip here and there. Once in a while, we may have a guest or two. We are seriously considering two boats, the Shannon 28 and the Caliber 33.

With everything else being equal (crew experience, price, condition, etc.), which boat do you think is the better boat from a seaworthiness perspective? Does size trump quality? Does five feet bigger make it that much more comfortable? Is a bigger boat with a lower motion comfort ratio and higher capsize ratio safer than a smaller boat with a higher motion comfort ratio and lower capsize ratio? Which of the two would you choose?

I welcome your comments.


chuck53 09-01-2012 04:31 PM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
Not familiar with either, but in the size range you are talking about, 5' is a huge difference.

The first time I went aboard a Catalina 32, I was really surprised how much larger my C34 was in comparison.

misfits 09-01-2012 04:40 PM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
I really like the Caliber 33 & if I ever was ever in a postion to tear up some money & upgrade, that's the boat I'd be looking for.

Far as the rest, can't help ya..

SeaQwest 09-03-2012 01:16 AM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
I know they are both good boats. Does the 5 feet more in size in this instance provide more seaworthiness/safety? If I am 100 miles offshore and get caught in nasty seas, all else being equal, would I be better off at the helm of a Shannon 28 or a Caliber 33?


contrarian 09-07-2012 07:56 PM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
This Original post might as well ask to compare a Lexus to a Pick-up. C'mon. Two entirely different animals. The biggest and sometimes hardest question to answer truthfully ( if such a concept exists for the philosophers among you) is how are you REALLY going to use the boat? Answer this truthfully and the comparison may take on an entirely different light.

SeaQwest 09-10-2012 03:33 PM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
I assume you are saying the Shannon is the Lexus?

Most of the time we will be coastal cruising in southwest Florida. We would like to visit the Keys, Bahamas and at some point cruise up the east coast. 90% of the time it will be just the two of us. I like to cruise outside when conditions permit, but I know you can get caught in some real slop on occasions. I was hoping someone familiar with the boats could shed some light on their seakeeping abilities and which they would choose for this purpose.

I know they are different boats (although both deemed to be cruisers), but the Shannon 28 has numbers that would seem to indicate it has a more comfortable motion than the Caliber 33, even though it is 5 ft smaller.


misfits 09-10-2012 04:21 PM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33

Originally Posted by SeaQwest (Post 920615)
I know they are different boats (although both deemed to be cruisers), but the Shannon 28 has numbers that would seem to indicate it has a more comfortable motion than the Caliber 33, even though it is 5 ft smaller.

I would think given the Shannon's hull design she would be a more forgiving boat in a seaway, but she's probably also slower.

Despite what we're told, size doesn't always matter...

contrarian 09-10-2012 11:32 PM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
The analogy of the Lexus / Pickup was to illustrate the disparity of the boats. For the record if I had a choice between a 30k Lexus or a 30k pickup, I would choose the pickup because I am a pick-up truck kinda guy. The Lexus is Very Nice maybe even nicer than a Cadillac( whole different thread) but that thread would be a much closer comparison. O.K. for the sake of continuity lets assume that the Shannon is the Lexus, What does it represent? More Luxurious ride, Status, better build Quality, more pleasant to the eye etc. If youre going to be out on the road yeah its a great choice but what if you need to haul a bolder? Not such a great choice then. The point of this silly metaphor is that you have to look at more than stats on boats such as Motion Comfort ratio and the like. You have to decide what works for you regardless of what works for anyone else. For me the choice for the type of sailing that you have described is easy, I would choose the Caliber out of these two vessels because for me it would be the more practical for what you describe mainly because of the extra space that it would give in the cabin as well as the cockpit. It may be totally different for you. Aesthetics may be more important than function. Sea keeping ability over speed and so forth. The real bottom line is that the boat has to feel right to you. When a boat feels right there will be a sense that this boat works for me and you will know when it does, it just feels right. I would suggest looking at boats that are similar to the ones that you have mentioned to get a better feel for what you like and don't like before making any commitments. I would also suggest that you PM me once you get the boat if you need help with passages on the west coast of Florida especially from Sarasota North if you're inclined to venture that far from your chosen cruising ground.

doug1957 09-11-2012 06:15 AM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
I can comment only on the Shannon. We have a 28 with the offshore configuration (head in the bow, no vee berth), which we have used for coastal cruising in Maine. Enough room for 2 certainly. We could fit 3 for overnight passages and 4 would be a stretch. We like the large cockpit, where we spend most of the time.

Not the fastest light air boat, but once it gets over 8 kts wind, it is pretty respectable. Easy to handle and is more comfortable in seas than the flatter-bottomed boats I've been on. Pretty heavy displacement for a boat this size seems to help with the motion. The cutter rig gives lots of options in different wind conditions.

ronbo1 09-11-2012 08:15 AM

Re: Shannon 28 versus Caliber 33
As Bob Perry says: any small boat less than 100' can be uncomfortable offshore.
There are many other reasons to chose either the Shannon or Caliber - both are seaworthy.


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