Join Date: Aug 2019
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Re: New to sailing, pick for me
Well I figured I would do an update.
I ended up purchasing a 1977 Catalina 27 for 3k. I bought this approximately 60ish miles from me with the intent to motor it down the river, through locks and the canal to my lake. It had been on the hard for a while but fired right up (atomic 4) and had a lot of the updates that I saw other Catalina owners doing. I was concerned about it sitting on the hard so I made sure the hull looked good, no soft spots and I had him run the motor for quite some time. The day we picked it up I had him run the motor for about 45 minutes. After that we took it out into the bay to make sure everything was good under load. Those were my concerns from sitting on the hard. After we had done that I felt comfortable in handing over the money. The guy I bought it from was really good.
We then fuel up and start down the river into the first locks. After about 5 miles it starts stalling. It wouldn't start back up until it sat for about 10 minutes. This then goes on for another 5ish miles, getting at times only a couple hundred yards before it stalls again. Needless to say my wife wasn't thrilled as at times we would float back down the river towards spillways and rocks (threw the anchor several times).
We limp it into a City along the way and were fortunate enough that they have free municipal docks. The boat then stays there for a month... Spent many days traveling back and forth fixing one problem only to run into another. One of the times we stalled we were fortunate enough that a guy came out to check on us and he knew these old motors left and right. He had a rebuilt carb that he was able to put on it as the old one wasn't pushing any gas through. One of the days everything was fixed and we were about to leave. High fiving about completing everything and WAAAAGGGGGHHHHHH. The exhaust pipe in the engine bay just fell from a fitting. It was a bit jury rigged to begin with but seemed solid when we bought it. Met one of the people from the locks who said they thought it was an abandoned boat.
Finally a month later we get underway and it's running good. Go through a lock and after 10 miles it stalls. I think the carb just vapor locked from my own operation because it ran perfect for the rest of the trip.
While on the canal we get buzzed by a large speedboat going about 60mph right next to us (way over the speed limit). The anchor was still in quick deployment mode and from the wake rolled us a bit and dropped it. This sent us into a spin in the middle of the canal. Managed to kill it and steady us. We finally get to the lake and start out. I noticed that they were holding their annual chicken wing run (with many large offshore speed boats) that day. We decided to stay to the north because they were going to the south. Of course the biggest ones decided they were going to stay to the north to flex their speed and like idiots buzz us laughing about 30 feet away. While we were not in any danger it just capped off a stressful day and my wife had had about enough by that point. The rest of the trip across the lake was uneventful (except for one hilarious story with my wife at the tiller). But that was a bit pg13. Anyways, we continue on and our house is only a few miles from the marina. She'd had enough and threatened to jump off and swim home when our house came in to view. Finally got it back to the marina.
We still had a week or two of sailing left but I threw out my back wakeboarding behind our other boat and couldn't raise the mast. So I guess next year I'll have to get a fresh start. Learned a lot about the boat and the motor throughout all this. Thanks for the advice and here's a few pics. Hoping my wife will be able to enjoy the experience of sailing next year.
Last edited by Orionsail; 10-11-2019 at 02:20 PM.