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Old 08-25-2011
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Beneteau First 32s5?

I am considering this boat as my first keelboat, but am having trouble finding out much about it? I have heard some say it doesn't sail well to its PHRF rating. Others that it is too tender to singlehand. The other boats I have been considering: Ericson 32-200, Catalina 34. Thoughts?

I would like to stay below $45,000 and 1987 or newer.

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Old 08-25-2011
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given the other two boats you are considering, I would take the First. But I am a prior Beneteau owner. The firsts were well done racing boats, I have never heard or met anyone who was disappointed in their performance. A lot of comments on how they are too narrow for liveaboard compared to the same size Oceanus series boat. First often have deeper draft than the Oceanus, But then that is why there are two lines...

Too tender, would not say so...can be a handfull to single hand, if not rigged properly or if you want to take advantage of all she can deliver - would need at least two more to reach her potential, sail changes, chutes, etc.

Best of luck on your new boat
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Old 08-25-2011
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I would take a 1st series Bene over an oceanus, or a catalina. An Ericson........some yes, others no. But generally speaking, I would take the 1st over an ericson.

They will be as mentioned, harder to sail as a single hander to a point. Other places, much easier, as the main sheet traveler is in the cockpit, vs typically coach mounted on teh ericson and catalina. The 1st will be more powered up, ie higher sail area to disp vs the ericson which is higher than the catalina. BUT< if you know this, you shorten the sail sooner, or do not use a 155, but a 125to 135 equal conditions you could use a 155 with a catalina as an example, have the same SA/Disp, and a higher pointing boat etc. UNLESS, you happen to be looking at the one or two shoal draft 1st series boats.

Generally speaking tho, most race boats while they have more lines etc to control things, once you use all these controls, they can sail better than a cruising style boat.

She drives me boat,
I drives me dinghy!
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