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  #11  
Old 11-01-2009
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Ps 31

Mike,

I have a 2005-model PS31 based in Dana Point. If you would like to come down for a sail to see how capable this boat is, pls call me on 949-632-5030.

Richard Beattie
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  #12  
Old 11-01-2009
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Somebody needs to provide an unbiased counter-point here, and while I can't claim to come to this discussion completely free of bias, I suppose that I need to weigh in here just to throw in a completely different perspective to balance the discussion.

To begin with, MikeinLA does not say that he is looking for an offshore, long distance cruising boat. As I read this he is simply looking for a high quaility cruising boat that will stand up well and be very durable. It sounds like he single-hands a lot and that he will be sailing the U.S. Pacific coast.

In an absolute sense, while they sail better than many small purpose built, long distance offshore cruisers, they are still a huge compromise in terms of sailing ability and ease of handling over a well designed, well constructed, modern coastal cruiser, and frankly the PS 34's and 37's (which I know better than the 31) have what I consider a miserable motion in coastal chop, pitching and rolling far more that I would consider ideal.

If Mike is going to be based in LA, he will need a boat with exceptional light to moderate air capabilities, and if he plans to sail north along the Pacific Coast, he will need a boat that will excell in heavy air and with the ability to make fast passage times.

He does not need the huge storage capacities of a circumnavigator and he does not need the weight penalty, or compromise the loss of sailing ability or loss of comfort that comes with long distance cruising capabilities.

Whatever the pitfalls of boats like the Catalina's Mike has known, they actually sail reasonably well across a pretty wide range of windspeeds. I fear that if Mike is looking for a "Forever boat", then I think that he would pretty quickly be disallusioned by the lack of sailing ability of the PS's relative to the boats that he has known.

I would think that he would be better served with a high quality modern coastal cruiser, perhaps something like a Dehler36, Farr 1020 or perhaps J-34c/35c.

Respectfullly,

Jeff
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  #13  
Old 11-01-2009
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. . . . I suppose it's a noble thought Jeff, providing an unbiased counter-point - infusing logic into a decision otherwise blinded by passion. But those PSC lines ... the form they circumscribe, ghosting through water without even the hint of a wake left behind, they have robbed us all of our senses. The vision of a designer no less than legend, the legacy of a family of vessels that has looked after its owners in the most trying of times, year upon year, their hard won reputation having stood up to some of the worst the sea could conjure. You ask the original poster to be reasonable and betray his heart in consideration of some mere coastal cruiser, and but for convienence sake? I say we cannot support this, I say we dare not! You are asking one in love to follow his head instead of his heart? What would be the point in living such a life, bereft of meaning, a life without purpose and without joy?
(. . . ok, maybe just keeding).

On a serious note, thank you for the greater perspective Jeff, always a good thing to look at the larger picture. Although based on my limited experiences with various other sailing boats, my PSC 34 seems to slide smoothly right through occassionally intense Lake Ontario coastal chop as long as I am not going too slowly (i.e., a little heel makes a big difference). On rare occassions I'll need to vary my heading by 5-10 degrees or pick up the pace a little (but not too much of course). I'll defer to your greater experience on this point in general, but as a whole, this boat gives me a fair measure of confidence. Of course you're right, the boat is an offshore cruiser. By design it is initially tender with its seakindly wineglass shaped hull. Regardless of whether I will ever take it for extended voyages offshore (although I hope I will one day), it's really nice to have the option - to support the dream - to know I can improve her and upgrade her over time working toward the dream. I'd say she is in fact a "forever" boat.
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  #14  
Old 11-02-2009
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I thought I'd pop back in for a minute to first thank you for the great responses so far and also just to let you know that I AM keeping up with this thread, so please feel free to keep chiming in. To Richard particularly, that is a very generous offer and I may take you up on it at some point. To perhaps clarify my position a bit, I bought my first boat, a Catalina 30, 25 years ago. After a year or so, I decided to move up to a 36 so I would have more room to live aboard which I did for a few years. By 1992 I was married with a son and my then wife compelled me to sell the boat. By 1995 we were divorced and between that, the earthquake and the bad real estate market (my business), it took until 1999 until I could buy another boat. I had been missing my boat for 7 years and all I could think of was "going home" to another 36. I found an immaculate 1991 which looked just like my old boat to the degree that I named her Deja Vu. That was 10 years ago and she is still immaculate. I mostly daysail with friends and also take her out by myself if it's a weekend and nobody can go sailing. I've made some trips to Catalina, but few because I was a single Dad and had to be around for my son (who got violently motion sick and wouldn't go sailing after a few tries). So, now my boy is off to college at Ohio State and I have a lot more boat time. My boat is 19 years old and I'm 57. I'm sure that we could stay together for the next 20 years or whatever, but I'm still drawn to "the ones that got away". Like I said, before I bought my first 36, I tried to get a PSC 34, but didn't qualify. I also loved the Dana. At boat shows, I would perch up in the V-berth for hours as I greeted the visitors and told them all about the boat. I knew every inch of her. It got to the point that the salesmen would just leave me there and all to go lunch or dinner together. Not sure how many Danas I sold, but I sure loved that boat. I don't think I want to liveaboard at a marina again. I've grown accustomed to my 70" TV and my house is paid for so it doesn't cost me anything. However, lately I've been asking myself some "what if" questions. What if I took a cruise down to Mexico? What if I bought a boat in Annapolis and took her down the intercoastal and on to the Bahamas and Caribbean just to island hop. Women come and go, so I don't have a mate to plan any of this with, I would go alone along with any friends or pick-up crew I could find. I'm truthfully not sure that I'll ever do any of it, but I'm starting to yearn for a boat that COULD do it and although I know that my current boat could (the PO of my current boat took her to Mexico) I'm drawn to traditional boats. I like bulwarks, mast pulpits, boom gallows and ratlines. I've had brief mental affairs with the Hans Christian 33, Mariner 36 ketch, Tayana 37 and even a Spindrift 43 pilothouse. But, as I've gotten older I've also gotten wiser and much less concerned with impressing anyone. I've read enough to know that, at least when short-handed, small is good. The PSC 31 reminds me of the Dana, but with a "garage" in the form of the aft berth as well as the chart table. In port, I am mildly claustrophobic in V-berths. The 31 strikes me as a giant open V-berth at night and a giant open main salon by day. It seems just perfect for me. And since she would either remain a day sailor or become a cruising boat, I don't see the need for all the clothing storage, etc that you need when living in a marina. Some other changes have gone on that also lead me toward the viability of a smaller boat. My whole CD collection now fits in a cigarette pack, movies and TV play on a laptop and instrumentation has become smaller (remember those old CRT radars at the chart table)? So I've been staring at the picture of the 31's salon saying "this would go here and this would go there" and it seems pretty workable so far, and it's the only boat I've found with a workable stripper pole. LOL. Anyway, this is my story. I thought that after so many thoughtful and considerate responses, I owed you "the REST of the story". I've also learned something else I didn't know, PSC owners are good people.

Thanks, Mike

Last edited by MikeinLA; 11-02-2009 at 03:01 AM.
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Old 11-02-2009
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I have PSC 31 (1995). I've owned a larger Beneteau which was great when we were living aboard in summers and had a teenage son and friends. It was perfect for us in that situation.

Now we appreciate the openness of the 31. It's much more comfortable in the main salon. We like having drawers everywhere. While we can't sleep as many aboard, we now have a garage where we put the dog crate, dinghy, sails and tools.

We sail on the great lakes where wind changes direction much of the time causing uncomfortable chop. The beamy Beneteau would be tossed to and fro while the PSC charges through. The big gunwales make me feel secure when I have to work on deck in a blow.

I'm an engineer and everywhere I look on the PSC I get a sense of satisfaction about how careful the design was to yield the best result. When marketing doesn't try to change the design every couple of years the company gets a good chance toward making perfection and it shows.

My choice was between a 31 and 34. I like the canoe stern but felt it took away too much on the 34 and I couldn't afford a 37. I also liked having the head at the bottom of the steps in the 31 to avoid traipsing water all through the boat when it's raining out. The head is a bit cramped and you have to be content with showering sitting down.

As to size, I'm 56 and not feeling any younger each year but I can raise the main on the 31 without problems although the genoa sheets take a lot of strength. I'm not sure my wife and I could handle anything larger (we currently have a sloop rig).

I can't imagine anyone regretting buying any of the PSC's. When you're adding some equipment, it will be for you - not the next owner.
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  #16  
Old 11-02-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeinLA View Post
I . . . and it's the only boat I've found with a workable stripper pole. LOL.
The broker I was working with when I was looking at PSC 31s also pointed this out . . . "we provide the poll, you provide the entertainment", I believe were his exact words.
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