SailNet Community - Reply to Topic
Thread: Bluewater - 1980 Hunter 33 or 1973 Contest 33 Reply to Thread
Send Trackbacks to (Separate multiple URLs with spaces) :
Post Icons
You may choose an icon for your message from the following list:

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

  Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

Click here to view the posting rules you are bound to when clicking the
'Submit Reply' button below

  Topic Review (Newest First)
01-06-2013 03:27 PM
Re: Bluewater - 1980 Hunter 33 or 1973 Contest 33

Originally Posted by rparuszkiewicz View Post
I'm looking at a 1980 Hunter 33. The boat needs some work and has been on the hard for a few years. I am not an experienced sailer but I have owened power boats all my life and I am handy at doing repairs. Is this a good boat or should I look for a cleaner one? Thanks, Ron
This is one of the "Cheribuni" Hunters.. conservative, solid generally well regarded boats.

"Needs some work" is a fairly open-ended statement that could mean a new battery or a complete deck recore... details will help, as will pictures, but caution is called for. It's easy to get into a 'steal of a deal' and end up paying and paying until the boat is 'right'.. often more in the end than buying a better version to start with. Not to mention the sailing time lost in the meantime
01-06-2013 02:44 PM
Re: Bluewater - 1980 Hunter 33 or 1973 Contest 33

I'm looking at a 1980 Hunter 33. The boat needs some work and has been on the hard for a few years. I am not an experienced sailer but I have owened power boats all my life and I am handy at doing repairs. Is this a good boat or should I look for a cleaner one? Thanks, Ron
01-17-2010 10:55 AM
My two cents!

I have lived aboard sailboat in south Florida for the last decade. The truth is that the 1980's Catalina, and hunters are cheap built crap. They came out the factory with the cheapest winches, and equipment they could put on them, and the build quality of the glass is inferior to the 70's production boats. Go with something that was built better like an old colombia, or a morgan or cape dory.
The Morgans are priced to sell and are more blue water quality than a hunter. here is a link on a nice 34 morgan for sale that is better than both the boats you are looking at, and for $11,500.00 you would have a much better sailboat for cruising on. Morgan 34 sailboat for sale I have lived on a 1979 San Juan 24, and a 1968 Colombia 28ft, 1975 Grampian 28ft. And If I could go back I would buy a Morgan over all of them. If your going to go out into blue water I would say look around before buying anything cause if its priced really low, and seems to good to be true, It probably is ! Good Luck and Fair winds.
12-11-2009 04:51 PM
midnightsailor I pretty much agree with mitiempos assessment of the Contest. The keel on my 29 is basically a long fin keel with attached rudder. The keel is very narrow and the bilge quite firm. A few years after my 1969 29', they actually seperated the keel and rudder so that there is less wetted surface area, and the keel is hung from a skeg. Because the hulls are relatively narrow( 8' 9") on my 29, it is easily driven and the boats are actually quite fast for a cruising boat and weatherly to boot. As Mitiempo points out, they are very similar to albergs, and such of that period, my 29 is almost identical in most ways to a Triton.
12-11-2009 03:49 PM
mitiempo The contest is a different type of sailboat, heavier with a long keel but I don't see it as a slow boat really. Similar to Albergs, early Seafarers, Spencers, and early Pearson boats. A lot of people would sooner be in the Contest in a blow offshore than the Hunter. But I don't think the Hunter is a bad boat just designed for a different use - coastal vs offshore.
12-11-2009 12:34 PM
COOL If sailing performance has any bearing
on your decision, I would go with the Hunter.
And at that price you really can't go wrong,
even if you gave it away after a couple of
years of use, you would have gotten your
moneys worth.
I was suprised to note that the designer of
the Contest is also credited with the
Flying Dutchman and FJ, both are awesome
classic designs. However it looks like he
missed the boat with his keel boat designs.
The Contest will be slow under sail.
Another thing to note, is that the Hunters of
the '70s and '80s were vastly different animals
than the Dockuminiums of today, they were well
designed and built sailboats.
12-10-2009 10:20 PM
lizardheadone Just checked on Yachtworld and there is a nice looking Yankee 30 for around 9K. They are thought to be really good boats. Check it out.
11-24-2009 09:26 PM
Different view of Contest

While I usually agree with Jeffs assessments of boats and respect his obvious knowledge on most things regarding boats, I have to respectfully disaggree with his assessment of the Contest. While I don't doubt his own experience with his contest it is entirely the opposite of my own. I have owned a 1967 Contest 29 for many Years and have sailed it extensively and have been in some pretty heavy sea with it during this time. I have never had a problem with oilcanning. It is interesting that another boat that alot of people feel to be a well made boat, the Cal 2-29 which I also owned for several years and sailed quite a bit between the hawaian islands I found to be terrible in regards to oilcanning..even had the bulkheads come adrift during some nasty passages in the alanuihaha channel. In similar conditions my Contest 29 was stiff and solid. So perhaps it is just particular boats of the same type where an occasional one might not be asl well put together as its sister boats.? AT any rate, I found the Contest to be well built, and far ahead in terms of construction as other boast of her era. Conyplex had been a pioneer in fiberglass boat building and even back then used temperature controlled indoor curing facilities, and used a lot of structural stifeners in the hull rather than just heavy glass work. The hulls were built to Loyds A1 offshore standrds and my Contest ha a certic ficate attesting to that as well as a copy of the hull and deck plan I have of it with the Loyds A1 rating and signature. Also, the hulls and deck are totally uncored and of solid glass so no core rot/delamination issues. Instead, the hull and deck is stiffened by forms and a completely fully tabbed and bonded wood interior. They do use a liner for the overhead. The hull deck joint is very tough and never has leaked a drop or given me any issues. The deck has a molded in toe rail and the hull is actually inserted into the hollow on the underside of this toe rail which was filled with mishmash basically epoxy resin and fillerboding the two together, then the whole thing is glassed together on the inside with a heavy layup of glasss. The hull has a teak rub rail that is then riveted with monel rivets mechnically fastening the two together, this is actualll done before the interior glass is apllied on the joint so the rivets are completelt sealed on the inside. The exteriorhard ware such as the stanchions are installed with stainless backing plates and then these are also glassed over on the inside. Since it is not cored even if there are bedding leaks ths is not a big issue though of course like all exterior hardware one should maintain a good bedding on the hardware. The good part is that this is the driest boat I have ever owned as far as interior leaks from hardware, toerails, hull /deck jopints, etc go. The glass work also was all done very well, clean, smooth, without any sharppieces or edges. ALso , all the hardware was made of electroplolished stainless steel and it has held up beautifully. The interior joinery was very high quality mahogany and mohagany ply, as well as a solid teak sole. Granted, the blocks were made of tufnol, but at the time that was considered state of the art in that it was lite, but strong, and I still have most of the original stuff and it is stilll in excellent condition although due to upgrading I am sure alot of it could be replaced. Also, I have to agree with Jeffs opinion of the wiring... it was truly cord!! and that is one thing that did have to be replaced. ALso, If the teak rubrail needs work it is alot of trouble to replace as the rivets have to be drilled out. I have to say all in all, my contest was one of the best boats I have owned, it sailed remarkably well, did great in heavy weather and had a beautiful,if somewhat small interior. I also have to point out that this is just my experience with this one particular model ie: the 1967 29' but I believe most of the others of this vintage were all builtg pretty much the same way. I still have it too but have now moved up and onto my Freedom 33 which I live aboard so I do have an interest in providing another view of these fine boats as I would like to sell it
11-24-2009 07:39 PM
paulk Looking at the ebay photos of the Contest, I was pleasantly surprised to see little or no water intrusion damage. Ports, fittings, hatches, shrouds, etc. usually leak, especially when they've had more than 30 years to do so, and then leave traces in stains on the fiberglass or brightwork. Nothing like that is apparent. In contrast to that, the ports on the Hunter look like they'd crack when you tightened down the dogs, and leak unmercifully with every heavy dewfall. Get some paint for the Contest's deck & cabin ( the gray that's showing might be primer coat starting to show through) and you'll have a nice looking boat. The skeg-mounted rudder is a nice touch too.
11-24-2009 07:06 PM
mitiempo The trick is to do as much as possible yourself. There is nothing on a boat that requires a degree or long apprenticeship to do. If you are able to write big cheques, no problem. But if you're like most I know you learn to do it yourself. Today there is so much on the web it's easy to find many doing the same thing, complete with pictures and step by step instructions. Even if it's an engine problem I couldn't take care of myself I would remove the part myself and take it to the shop instead of paying $80 an hour for a mechanic to remove it. I am refitting/modifying my CS27 and so far have only had the experts do two things. Welding (new fuel tank and some custom brackets for cabin top clutches) and rebuilding the starter. All the wiring - every 12 volt wire including the entire engine harness was replaced by me after purchasing the proper crimpers needed to do it right. All woodwork and glasswork including 2 half bulkheads in the galley, all plumbing and all finish work I do myself. As Maine Sail says, if you do the work yourself the tools are almost free. In the spring I will be replacing seacocks and moving a few through hulls to better locations and redoing the rig and lifelines. I don't anticipate hiring anyone except the travel lift and powerwash. For the rig I'll get swages for the top end done (I don't have that tool ) and using mechanical fittings for the lower end. The more labor cost I save then more money is available for better equipment.
Victoria B.C.
This thread has more than 10 replies. Click here to review the whole thread.

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome