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genki 05-25-2011 03:40 PM

Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
Hi, we have been looking for a Sabre 28. Found an '84 model that looks to be in good condition. The chainplates have had attention and leaks fixed. One thing that caught my attention is that the door under the mask step is ill fitting and will not close. The top of the door is out of alignment, it's higher than the roof area that it's supposed to snug closed into.

The mast step at the bottom is dry and the bilge area looks good, all areas dry. The tabbing all looked good too.

We were told that the door may have been rehung due to the hinges becoming threaded and that we could take it off and plane the top down to get it to close.

If we do put in an offer we would have it surveyed of course but I wanted to get opinions here, what are the thoughts?


kd3pc 05-25-2011 05:25 PM

not sure about the forepeak door...but the Sabre 28 is one of the best boats, IMHO, ever built. It has it's quirks, curved floors, small storage. But it is well built and sails even better.

Usually if the mast step has been repaired you will see a slight difference in the sole. Mine had been repaired, but they redid the whole sole with similar material that Sabre did originally. Mid atlantic repairs usually use a thinner veneer product.

I would look closely at the door it should "hang" symmetrically and may just need an adjustment. Could be a land carpenter "fixed" it previously and may only need a boat carpenter to redo it.

Other than mast step and older electronics, you should be happy with the Sabre 28, especially an 80's model.

hellosailor 05-25-2011 08:03 PM

You might want a surveyor's opinion. If the door (presumably to the forward cabin?) isn't closing, it might have been rehung incorrectely, but why would it have been rehung at all?

It is also common for boats with problems to "warp" and then doors don't close. Could be the chainplates were part of the problem, shrouds too tight or loose, stays too tight, boat not on stands properly, mast step shifted or is very possible that the door won't close properly because something has shifted. Whether that's important, or correctable, or a dealbreaker, is something you probably should get a professional opinion on.

Overall though, Sabre is a top line boat.

Sabre Dan 06-02-2012 01:11 PM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
If you are still looking for a Sabre 28, I have one for sale CHEAP!! Contact me here and I'll give you details.

timmbob 06-19-2012 07:58 PM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
Hey Dan, I saw your post to the forum about having a Sabre 28 for sale. Is it still available? I have the Sabre 28 on my short list.


mmorchardo 06-28-2012 04:29 PM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
I am also looking at Sabre 28's. Can anyone give me pros and cons of Mark I vs II vs III other than the specs I can find online? I am familiar with the various engine configurations and am trying to stay away from the Volvo but would like to know if there was any change in sailing performance through the 3 models.

Sabre Dan 07-02-2012 06:18 AM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
As far as I can tell, the major difference is in the configuration of the head; In the mark III, the sink is on the port side with the toilet. In the mark II, which I own, the sink is on the starboard side by itself. What price ranges are you seeing?

hellosailor 07-02-2012 10:42 AM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
Practical Sailor reviewed the boat & gave it high praise, a long time ago and in their "Practical boat Buying" volume 1.
Among the differences the "later" models (they don't indicate Marks) had added lower forward shrouds to reduce mast pumping. Changed the mast base to add fittings to make it easier to lead all lines aft. And eventually moved the traveler to the cabin top in 1982, apparently to preserve the helmsman's head.

In 1976 the forward anchor well was added. Pre-1982, the top of the ice box was not well insulated lathough the box itself was. post-82, the top was also insulated.

Base engine was the A4 with a Volvo diesel option, then both were replaced by the MD7A and finally a Westerbeke in 1981. So if you don't want Volvo, you will be getting a 1981+ boat or a repowered one.

Those Volvos are capable of running a very long time, but ANY raw-water-cooled engine that has been used in salt water all this time my have extensive salt corrosion and literally be rusting away inside. Typically you can check that by removing the cooling pump or somtimes the exhaust manifold itself, in order to see if the engine has been eaten out. That's about the only thing that really will kill them.

As compared to Westerbleak [sic] sho never really BUILD engines, they assemble parts supplied by the lowest bidder. So one "WB" may be a British Leyland engine while another comes from Japan...some sleuthing may be required.

Basically they give the boat a gold star, and differences (moving the traveler, insulating the icebox, adding the shrouds) are all fairly simple changes an owner can make. Choice of engine and anchor well are about the only things you'd want to make sure were already done, and it sounds like "post 82 boat" would make that all happen for you.

I never met a Sabre I didn't like, or find some really small feature that tipped me off, the folks who were building it, spent plenty of their own time appreciating boats.

Sabre Dan 07-03-2012 08:50 AM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
Thanks for the very accurate info, Sailor. My 1980 has the Volvo engine, but the raw water only cools the fresh water through the heat exchanger, and never enters the engine itself,. only fresh water courses through the engine. The only point of corrosion would be the heat exchanger, and this is easily checked and can be replaced or recored witjhout too much difficulty. MY 1980 has the added lower shrouds to eliminate the mast pumping problem. My traveler is still located behind the helm, and moving it would be a good upgrade.

hellosailor 07-03-2012 10:09 AM

Re: Buying a Sabre 28 - questions
You should probably thank the original owner for being such a far-sighted fellow.<G> I don't know if people opt for raw water because it is cheaper and they figure it won't be their problem, or if they really just don't understand the problem. Like the masses of car owners who never think of air or oil. Or maybe, they're all racers looking to save a few pounds in the engine bay. (Yeah, that MUST be it.<G>)

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