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Venture Newport 23 *DL
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4 15021 Thu November 29, 2001
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Description: Venture Newport 23 *DL
Keywords: Venture Newport 23 *DL



Registered: January 2000
Location: maryland
Posts: 1887
Review Date: Mon June 29, 1998 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 


23' Cutter (two jibs, one self tending or club footed). Mine is greatly modified for single handing and has new interior vastly differing from the original MacGregor sold model. Bow Sprit and trail boards are only teh start of the bright work on my Venture. Nimble yet forgiving, has righted herslef form 110 degrees, with its near 600 lb swing keel. I Often sail it in 30 gusting 45, but she gets legs in about 10-12 knots carrying about 20 degrees of heel. Lists to port about 1-2 deg due to twin batteries and 15 gallon water tank (would relocate if my electrics were less fixed). Red gelcoat badly fadded until TR-311 cutting and polishing paste was used. Factory clear coat began peeling from hull back in 92, required extensive chemical stripping and wet sanding to remove the eyesore. Oxidation set in 1 year later; loks much better now and only takes a weekend to spif up! If you like wood working the V23 makes a great little project but if the weather changes greatly brace yourself for a extended spring commissionings. Perhaps its sweat equity or this boat is too much of me, but I really like this boat. If I had to gripe I say it could use 2 1/2" more headroom under the cabins pop-top, it about 5' 10" (my forehead's level). MacGregor says it'll sleeps five but I gave up on that belief, in summer the cokcpit seats are perfect for a sleeping bag. Inside sleep two very cozy in the V-berth and 2 very short on the lowered galley table.
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Registered: January 2000
Location: maryland
Posts: 1887
Review Date: Wed August 12, 1998 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 


We love our 23. It has a balanced helm and the cutter rig is an eye catcher. It was made only one month a year for ten years. Too bad MacGregor stopped production. I get offers to buy it every time I sail. The following is a longish narrative that describes some of the additions we have made.
As you might be able to tell from the following list that I love this boat. I've painted the hull and deck using Petit Easipoxy (off white). It is fairly easy to use but I didn't get proficient until I was about finished. I've replaced the halyards and brought them back through rope clutches to the cockpit. With jib downhauls the sail management is much safer and faster. The mountain winds can raise from 3 knots to 20 in just a few minutes without warning. I installed jiffy reefing with two reefs. Added a topping lift, rehung the boom vang and I installed bungees on the bow sprit that hold down the dropped jibs. We have designed and made a screen/clear plastic cover for poptop that snaps and Velcro’s just inside the poptop; keeping bugs and water out.

On the inside I replaced dark blue carpet with a light outdoor Berber carpet and repainted the surfaces with the same off white Easipoxy paint. The bulkheads were dark and pretty buggered up with years of mounting who knows what, so I laminated them and the table with white counter top material. I found the dinette unusable so we yanked the cushions, left the table and fitted bulkhead to bulkhead fore and aft shelves and use 3 gal (12) Rubbermaid tubs as drawers. The shelves have a small lip that contains the tubs when sailing. The biggest change was lengthening the forward berths. I moved the porta pot to the center aisle on a rolling pull out and extended the berth’s to the bulkhead (30"). Two of the dinette cushions fit the space, there is still storage under for sails and spare fenders. With an eggcrate foam cover makes a very comfortable 8’x7’ berth. I added a bookshelf in the forward bow above the berths.

On our third launching at the Great Salt Lake, an old knot meter plug popped out. Luckily we were able to get it back on the trailer with only a foot of salt water inside. My partner is a new sailor and this event wasn't helping. I installed about 20 extra cubic feet of foam, filling the bow under the berths and every other unused space. I installed an auto bilge pump(2200gph) in the aft dinette storage next to keel box with 1 1/2" hose out the transom. I had to drill several holes in the liner to let water get to the pump from other parts of the boat. I also installed a manual pump(22 gpm) operated from the cockpit. I can pump with either hand on either tack. Those improvements helped my first and hopefully last mate lessen her fears about sinking and allowed a more restful night's sleep at anchor. We made several canvas/net pouches that hang from the wood strip in the cabin and several in the cockpit for sheets. With a knot meter, depth sounder(puck glued to hull forward under the berth),mast head and portable vhf’s and a hand held gps we feel that we can compete with the elements.

I replaced the trailer tongue with a 12' sliding one with various adjustments to handle differing ramp depths. The best trailer improvement was adding Fulton boat guides that aid in backing down the ramp and centering the boat, I added wood to make the keel "V" bigger. I use a cheap break away block on the bow sprit and use the trailer wench rope attached to the inner stay to raise and lower the mast. replacing the bow rubber "V" with carpet during hauling and returning it after allows a snug fit that improves road manners. I also added ratchet 2”straps over the bow and stern to keep the boat and trailer together. I upgraded the tires to G78 and mounted the spare forward to increase tongue weight.(275 LB) I had the wench mount moved up for a more horizontal pull on the bow eye. Replaced the bow eye with a stronger size. Added another just above it for the new chain bobstay. Installed a new wider bow sprit. Built a mahogany cockpit floor and a mahogany locker for the gas tank at the rear of the cockpit. New wiring through out the boat and trailer , a group 30 battery and an alternator on the 6 hp Yamaha (6 amps) provide more than enough power for week long cruises on Jackson Lake in Grand Teton National Park.

Two Gaz 370 back pack stoves handle the kitchen chores. A large umbrella and a larger canopy provide shade. Occasionally we tow an inflatable kayak when we are cruising. A garden sprayer and an occasional high mountain death swim keep things civil. A solar vent above the berth though noisy keeps things fresh and a mast mounted deck flood light brightens up the boat for night deck work. Four 4” PVC tubes under the port cockpit and over the port quarter berth provide easy storage for whisper poles and boat hooks.

After having my main’s first reef clew torn out in our last outing (25 knots +) on the Great Salt Lake I found and bought a new set of sails.($840) Loud and stiff but seems to sail closer to the wind. New sails encouraged me to sew new sail covers. I designed jib covers with a front and top zipper. all of forest green sunbrella. None of the Salt Lake boats has the club foot boom for the staysail. I’m getting info about making one; I think it will help me point higher. I also have a large Ginny which attaches to the bow sprit and goes back past the shrouds and a small spinnaker which I would like to trade for a cruising chute with snuffer. I carry three anchors 5, 8, and 13 pound danforths with plenty of 3/8’ line on each. I also use a 10 lb mushroom sentry on the anchor rode to control anchoring in tight quarters.

Cosmetically I added mahogany strips to the main hatch, put on an eyebrow strip along the cabin top. Ours did not have a pulpit, but after several near falls I had one made.. I’m also thinking about a toe rail forward. All the external wood is bright(5-6 coats).

As for boat handling: we love the cutter setup. With three sails up the helm is neutral we’ve sailed like this to about 17 mph true to windward and she settles in at 15 degrees. Any more heel and there is no gain so we reef. Staysail(Newporter) and main.(25mph) Then staysail and reefed main. (once over 32mph) no real problems. With the swept back spreaders down wind is a challenge without a preventer of some kind. We’ve had better luck dropping the main, winging the jibs and going almost as fast. In the right conditions 12 to 15 mph winds and flat water we’ve beaten Mac 26c’s, Catilina 22-25s and a Hunter 26 in ad hoc “manly” beer races. Our real love is cruising, and we hope to haul it across the country in a couple of years sailing along the way.

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Review Date: Fri June 16, 2000 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 


*DL, D = additional DETAILS, L = LOG info of voyages

A classic styled trailerable cutter rig. Unfortunately, no longer
in production. Built by McGregor Yachts (then called Venture).
Click here to
go to Venture Newport Owner's Web site...

If you'd like to join a group of other Venture Newport owners,
you can do so by going to the above link then following the link
to join eGroups.

- Details Of The Venture Newport -

Key features- Swing keel. Bowsprit. Full-cabin pop-top.
Fordeck hatch. "Sleeps 4". Dinette/bed. Head. Sliding
sink/galley unit.

Strengths- A beautiful classic look with bow sprit and
trailboards forward and reverse wineglass transom and a hint of
tumblehome aft. The 2000 lb. displacement makes trailering easy.
Cutter-rig (twin headsails) makes reducing total sail area easy.
Rigged from trailer into water; 15-20 min.

Weaknesses- 2000 lb. displacement makes it a little
on the tender side but we've been out in 25 mph winds before by
reducing sail (main has one reef point.)

Overall Satisfaction- We've had it for 9 years and love
it!. We've sailed it on local freshwater lakes, and trailered
it twice to Galveston. I use it for sail training of adults and
children. Specs- LOA = 22' 7", Beam = 7' 2", Disp. =
2000 lb., Swing keel = 600 lb. Draft KD = 5' 6", Draft KU
= 18" Sail area total = 253 sq' (125, 70, 68) Cockpit length
= 6' 4"

I would enjoy email from other V. Newport owners to hear about
their experiences and modifications.

Email address: [email protected]

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s/v Akula

Registered: January 2001
Location: Long Island, NY USA
Posts: 4
Review Date: Thu November 29, 2001 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 


This classic cutter rig is a real eye catcher. In addition to the stock design with taffrails, bowsprit, trailboards, and other cutter influences, I have installed dual Sheaffer Snapfurls, Sheaffer 300 series blocks, Sheaffer lazyjacks, Sheaffer boom vangs,and Spinlock PX Powercleats to create a single-handers dream boat with all controls to the cockpit. Many products bought on Sailnet.


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