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Old 10-03-2007
Vagabond 47
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Question Looking for Vagabond 47 Owners

My husband and I live on our 1986 Vagabond 47. We have owned her for two years and have had mixed emotions ever since. She is beautiful, strong, seaworthy, and a very comfortable boat to liveaboard. Our issues are with the electrical system, leaking decks, and constant water in the bilge, not to mention the never ending sanding and varnishing of the multitude of wood. Now don't get me wrong......we have a strong bond and love affair going on with our Jade Dragon, but I would love to hear from any other Vagabond owners that might be out there.

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Old 10-03-2007
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
Jade...we have good friends on a Vag47 in the Caribe right now. Your post sounds like the same feelings they have! They were driven hard aground on coral a couple of years back and were thankful of the rugged construction in a situation that would have broken the back of lesser vessels.
My friend is an excellent mechanic and "fixer"...they love the boat but it sure does keep him busy.
Welcome aboard.
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Old 10-03-2007
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Cruiser/Lats and Atts TV
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JadeDragon - I knew a couple who lived/sailed on a Vagabond 47 and thoroughly loved it. Yes, there was a lot of work, but according to them it was worth it. I also knew a surveyor who had captained a Vagabond 47 and said "It wouldn't sail unless it was blowing 15, and you had to reef at 20". I always figured he was exagerrating. Another friend of mine, Bob Bitchin, sold his Formosa 56 "Lost Soul" this past summer. He is seriously considering a brand new Vagabond 47, as a yard in China has the molds and is building them.

Now, about all that sanding and varnishing... We own a '78 North Sea 33 pilothouse, built by Ta Chiao. Solid teak pilothouse, cap rail, window frames, etc. A lot of work. We are going to try something I have heard about for awhile, and have seen it done (on the "Lost Soul" in fact). Basically, it is an epoxy/varnish system that utilizes Mas Epoxy. Mas should be used as it does not have that aimeen blush that requires washing between coats. Anyway, quite simply, sand down to bare wood, apply two coats of Mas Epoxy, then apply the UV protectant of your choice (varnish). The owner of Mas, JB Currell, actually recommends automotive clear coat as the UV protectant. He says where I live in the Pacific NW it should last 10 years. Of course, there will be light sanding and scuff repair every once in awhile, but it should eliminate 90% of the subsequent work of "keeping on top of it". JB owns quite a few wood boats and he has been using this method for about 10 years.

There is a series of "how to" videos about this we made that are up on the Mas web site:


We are going to do it, so I'll keep y'all posted on how it goes...

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"Always approach the dock at the speed you wish to hit it."
1978 North Sea 33 Pilothouse Cutter (Ta Chiao)

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