1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions - SailNet Community
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Old 07-26-2012 Thread Starter
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1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

Hello. I'm new to the forum and potentially (hopefully?) will be the new owner of a small cruiser in the near future. Finally have my wife on board (ha ha) with the idea. We sail exclusively on Lake Champlain.

I currently have my eye on a Grampian 26'. 1973 Grampian Grampian 26 sailboat for sale in Vermont

And I'm also looking at a Seafarer 26'. 1981 Seafarer sloop sailboat for sale in Vermont

The Grampian appeals to me a bit more because (1) I've read that these are fairly well built boats and seem to age well without a lot of major problems; and (2) the outboard will be a whole lot easier to maintain/replace than a 1981 inboard Yanmar (as much as I'd like to have an inboard).

My main questions are for general opinions on these boats, but also what to look for when going for a viewing. I've been sailing smaller daysailers all my life, but have never been the purchaser of a boat, and don't have experience assessing larger boats. The Grampian is in the water currently--should I ask to have it pulled?

I've also seen mention of people getting a survey done. Is that something I will have to do to insure? The price point on these boats does not seem to justify the cost of what I understand a survey costs, especially if I also have to pay to have the Grampian pulled.

Thanks in advance. Hope to spend some time here with you folks.
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Old 07-26-2012
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

Most insurance companies want a survey. If I'm buying a boat I WANT a survey. As far as hauling the boat for inspection/survey, that is usually the buyer's responsibility to have done and pay for, but...everything is negotiable. If the seller is real anxious to sell, you can try to make that part of the sale, that he pays for hauling but don't be surprised if you are turned down.

I hear what you are saying about inboard vs. outboard but having an inboard is Far better than having an outboard especially if you are under power and in choppy water.

If I had to choose between just those 2, hands down on the Seafarer even with the higher price.

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Old 07-26-2012
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

G 26 is a sweet ride, lots of room down below and they are every where for any parts. Our club race champ sailed a G 26 for years and it moved. Well built and can handle just about anything. is it a fixed or a drop keel?
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

Hi caberg, Grampians are known as very solid, seaworthy boats. Not fancy, but well built comfortable cruisers. I own a Grampian 34 (www.elysian.ca), but have sailed Gramp 26s.

The other nice thing about all Grampian models are their relative size down below. They tend to be roomy, with more head room than most boats in their class (ex: my 34 has 7-feet of headroom!). And as an added plus, they're good sailors -- decently fast.

There's nothing specific that I can think of to look for, but here's a quick list of things to examine on all used boats (and probably new ones too):

- deck core problems; any older boat with cored decks (and most have cores) can develop problems with water intrusion. Sound around all deck fittings, and look below for any signs of water intrusion.

- examine the mast step for any signs of compression.

- check for water intrusion around ports. If the ports have not been upgraded, they will likely be leaking.

- standing rigging should be examined. Find out how old it is.

- look for signs of leakage through the hull-deck joint.

- look in the bilge, and examine the keel bolts.

- look at the keel/hull joint.

- rotate the rudder out of the water and look for any play in the shaft.
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

I owned a 72 Grampian 26 and sailed it for about a decade on Lake Michigan. I was very pleased with the boat. Sturdy and sailed well. Not much of a looker, though.

I had a long shaft Evinrude 10 horse on it, which provided ample power and I experienced little problem keeping the prop in the water, under a variety of conditions. The waves on Lake Michigan are known to be steep, and spaced closely together. The outboard sits in a cutout in the transom, which is handy for backing into a slip. I found it easier to back in than go forward, as I was able to hold the boat's tiller in one hand and the motor's tiller in the other and easily point the stern where I wanted it to go. With an outboard, you'll never have a repair that exceeds the cost of a decent used replacement motor. An older Yanmar might give you excellent service, but if you have a major problem, you are sceeeeeerewd. If a repair is required on your outboard, just unscrew it from the boat and toss it in your trunk and take it to the shop of your choosing. Just my opinion, but I think there's a lot to be said for an outboard on a 26 foot boat, especially one that does a good job of keeping it's prop in the water.
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

Grampian - No other boat conjures up youthful fun like a Grampian..

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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

35 years ago I did a cruise on a G-26 with 3 others. It was a very satisfactory little boat. Sailed quite well and had a LOT of interior room for a 26'.

Two observations - the cabin top handrails were just straight pieces of teak screwed into raised, moulded pedestals on the cabin top and the screws pulled out of the glass. The other is that it had extraordinarily narrow (almost non-existent) side decks - that's what allowed the big interior. If I had one, I'd spend the money to get some of those stanchion bases that C&C used that fit over the holey rail. That would give you a few extra inches of useable side deck - it would make the difference between going forward over the high cabin top or actually being able to use the side decks.

Obviously they are old boats now and so need to be viewed on a case by case basis but I think a decent one could be customized and improved into a very nice minimum cruiser.

PHRF is around 220 so it's a middling performer. (C&C 26 is 210)

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

My first boat was a 1974 Grampian 26....great starter boat with lots of forgiveness. Go for it, you won't be disapointed. As for the survey, unless your insurance company demands one I would skip spending money for a boat of that price. Do you know a sailing buddy that would go look at it with you? A survey would cost you about 500 bucks, so it it makes you sleep better at night, then follow your gut. Let us know what you end up doing. Good luck.
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Old 07-26-2012
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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

Grampian, hands down. It is a BIG 26' boat while the Seafarer is the opposite- a smallish 26' boat. The difference really shows up in the v-berth. The Grampian v-berth is spacious and bright with enough room to sit up, the Seafarer's is a tight narrow dark cave. The only downside to the Gramp is the dinette layout. it makes for a more functional galley that doesn't pull double duty as a companionway step, but sacrifices the lounging space of an opposed settee layout.
She ain't pretty, but she's solid.

That Seafarer strikes me as being marginally underpowered with an 8 hp diesel. My Georgian 23 has a 1GM10 diesel and while she can maintain hull speed with a clean prop in calm seas, any sort of chop will slow her by a knot or more. That Seafarer is hauling another 1000 lbs with 1 fewer hp.

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Re: 1973 Grampian 26' -- Opinions & Questions

Just looking at the adds, I like the Seafarer better. It has a the inboard engine and a 150 genoa. The Genoa on the Grampian looks like it doesn't quit fit and it might have been bought second hand and made to work on this boat. If you are looking for a turn key boat at this price range then these are the details that will matter. Your best bet is look at them both and the right one will present itself. With boats, nothing can't be overcome with a little money and sweat equity. The only issue is where do you start.

1985 C&C 37
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