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rybus9 12-22-2007 06:11 PM

Buy this Tartan 27 or a Puddle Duck Racer?
Here's where I'm at.
I have a very strong desire to own a sailboat and learn how to sail. I've never had a boat in my life. But for most of my life I've dreamed about sailing.
I live in the hills of Tennessee and so I would be learning on a nearby lake.
But after living down in the Florida Keys in a tent for six months I want to return and try living aboard my own sailboat.
Since I am totally new to sailing I probably should build a Puddle Duck Racer on the cheap and get some basics down with it. But I went today and looked at a Tartan 27 that is being sold for only $1000.00. It obviously is a 'project' boat. Needs paint and has a leaking hatch.
That Atomic 4 does run though...
I guess part of me is thinking well, I could buy it for a thousand dollars and start getting it ready for some serious sailing which would take a while. Or I could build a PDR and begin learning how to sail sooner. But I keep seeing myself on the Tartan sailing around the Keys.(afer I've learned how to sail it of course.)
Anyway, I would love to hear what you guys have to say.

camaraderie 12-22-2007 09:04 PM

rybus...even a modestly good condition OLD Tartan27 would SELL for 5-8K more than that so the question becomes...what is REALLY wrong with that boat and will it cost you more than the boat is worth to fix it. If you have not had the boat surveyed professionally then you may be in for some surprises. On the other hand...on a lake for'd be hard to get anything cheaper and you might just be fine for a few years while you learn. Just resist the temptation to dump in a lot of money.

rybus9 12-22-2007 09:12 PM

Thanks for your reply camaraderie. Yes, I wll definitely need to learn more about the Tartan and try and find out what it might require to get her in good sailing shape.
Do you think this boat would be one that I could learn how to sail on? Or do you think it might be too big for a total newbie?
I like the idea of being able to live on it versus just a daysailer.
Thanks again!

camaraderie 12-22-2007 09:28 PM

The tartan will be EASIER than a smaller boat to learn on. It won't tip over as easily for one thing! You will be able to handle her just fine after a lesson or two. I was ALWAYS scared each time I moved up a size in boats thinking the next size would be too big to handle. Each was easier and more stable in all kinds of weather. The only more difficult thing about a bigger boat is coming into the dock under power as you have more momentum...after a few dings, you get the hang of it! Good luck & welcome aboard.

rybus9 12-22-2007 09:39 PM

Wow! That's good to hear! Thanks!

7Psych 12-25-2007 03:13 PM

Any pics??? Any thoughts why the price is sooooo low??;)

rybus9 12-25-2007 09:22 PM

Hello Psych,
Since I first posted I've gone with the owner of the Tartan and had the chance to look inside the cabin and ask him a lot of questions.(sorry, no pics)
First off, the owner was very nice and seemed to be honest answering my questions.
He admitted that he lost interest in the boat and has left her sitting in her slip since '93.(?!)
While the Atomic4 does run, he mentioned that the gas tank leaks and needs to be replaced.
She also leaks around the companion way hatch and a couple of the portholes(are they still called portholes when they're not round, or windows? (See what a newbie I am!)

But I discovered that there's a MAJOR stumbling block for me regarding this boat that I hadn't expected until I stepped down inside the cabin.
I stand 5'10" and I've read in more than one place that the Tartan 27 has 6 foot of headroom.
Well, with my tennis shoes on I never once found a place inside the cabin that the top of my head wasn't rubbing hard agaisnt the roof.(surely they didn't mean barefoot, did they?)
Just the small amount of time that I spent inside the cabin made me very aware of how much this would be a problem for me if I were to buy this boat.
So unfortunately I don't think I'll buy her.
I've been researching boats that might trully have at least 6' of headroom and if any of you reading this might have any ideas regarding boats that you know for sure that have 6' headroom please let me know.
And as I mentioned earliler my plan is to have a boat that I can live on and sail extensivley through the Florida Keys and maybe jump over to the Bahamas too.

CalebD 01-10-2008 10:12 PM

I am 6' tall and I think that the 'headroom' issue is way over rated, especially when underway. When at anchor or tied up you have the whole topsides with mostly unlimited headroom not to mention the bottom of the companionway stairs. You won't find many other boats quite as forgiving with such sea kindly attitudes for the price you were quoted. Of course, you should probably re do all the standing rigging before it goes so a $1K boat is only the price of admission.

Sasha_V 01-10-2008 11:12 PM

I'm 6'2, there is no where on board my boat that I can fully stand up...It is actually not much of a problem. When you go down below in a seaway you mostly look to sit down so you can use both hands to do thing without risking getting tumbled over, and when you areat anchour or dock it is even less of an issue. You are buying a sailing boat, not a party boat. I think the Tartan sounds like an outstandingly good deal.

chef2sail 01-11-2008 12:34 AM

Looking back How wonderfull would it have been if my first boat to learn on was a Tartan 27. Every boat will have "issues" and untilyouve owned yours for a few years and customize it the way you want will have compromises.

The main factors here is the hull and deck the engine serviceable,,are the gas tanks there moisture between the decks. Certainly I would get this surveyoed by a reputable one and understand that with some money and some sweat equity (yours) you will get educated quickly about sailing. I have found like the projects you yourself on your own boat teach you tons about how it is put together,,how to troubleshoot when something goes wrong...and increases your sailing knowledge.

This seems like a good oppertunity.


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