Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Alameda, San Francisco Bay
Thanked 69 Times in 68 Posts
Rep Power: 16
Re: Buying a small cruiser!
I love it when Bounder owners denigrate Winnebago buyers. I guess that if you were truly an “avid” sailor, you’d be looking at nothing less than J105s – wife be damned (you might also want to start looking for a good divorce attorney).
Shoal draft and performance aren’t usually found in the same sentence. The truth of the matter is most of the boats that are considered “weekenders” in your size range are going to look a lot like the three that you are considering.
Full disclosure – I own a Catalina 34 in the same vintage as your target zone. I do know a couple of people who own C320s, one of which is a member of the Single-Handed Sailor’s Society in San Francisco and has qualified his C320 for the Single Handed Transpac. Whereas naturally, I prefer the cabin and deck layout on my C34, the C320 is quite serviceable. Most people sleep in the aft cabin so check it out before you buy. Mrs. B likes the C320 galley better. With the notoriously light winds of the Chessie, I would concentrate my search on the tall rig version. I’ve owned Catalinas of various stripes for over thirty years and I can attest to their above average build quality and superior customer support. But the best way to gauge what the owners think about their boats is to visit the message board from the owner’s association website and read a honest assessment of what the owners feel about their boats.
Mark, light (small) cruisers have 6” guns, heavies 8”. Battleships start at 12”.
2000 Catalina 34 MkII