The factory-finished Alejuela 38s are said to be nice quality boats. I've never sailed aboard one, but there are two of them at our marina, so I get to oggle them closely. There was a lot of nice custom wood and metalwork on the boats that distinguished them from run-of-the-mill production boats. They were considered many steps higher than say, Westsail, in terms of refinement and quality.
The A38 is a variation of William Atkin's Ingrid ketch. In fact, it's my understanding that it was an unauthorized variation, i.e. the design was essentially stolen and re-configured as a cutter rather than a Ketch, with no royalties paid to the designer's heirs. This legal sticking point may have contributed in part to the company's demise -- they went under in the late 70's or early 80's along with many other So.Cal. builders.
As much as I like the double-ender looks, and admire William Atkin designs, the standard interior does not appeal to me much. To my eye, with the standard configuration, it is a 38' boat without a lot of interior space. Your Westsail 32 (another Atkin design) is nearly as voluminous, but in a much more compact package. However, I have seen a few interiors that had better configurations -- with aft cabins or quarterberths. Of course, interior configuration is often a matter of personal preference.
They were solidly built boats. But, like your Westsail, they were polyester resin boats, so would have to be inspected for blistering (I have no specific knowledge about blistering problems, though).
Don't tell us you've already sold that Westsail?
GB,We might take a year off and cruise with the kids (5, 8 & 10) so we will be cramped and I'm drawn to the Atkins designs....but you have confirmed that the interior space is about the same as our boat.
I'm a sucker for the lines though!
Not sure. I seem to recall that Atkin's Tally Ho! design predates the one you linked to, and the boat in that link seems quite a bit larger too (Atkin's Tally Ho! is a 30-footer).I wonder if this "Tally Ho" inspired the CGC.....
I own and sail Wabi Sabi - Alajuela 38 #63 build in 1977. We did a 5 year restoration: we did it all. The boats are build like tanks. Everything was done right; there were no short cuts.
The Alajuela 38 design was actually patterned after the Goucho - which was an Atkins-Archer that actually sailed well. The builders were two guys who were worked in the So. Cal. boating industry in the 70s and set out to build a cruising boat for themselves. The plan was to build 8 boats, keep 2 and sell the other 6. Mike Riding kept to the plan but Rod Jermaine kept building boats because the demand was there. They ended up building 81 A38s and about 30 A33s.
In the Winter/Spring of 2006/07 my wife and I sailed to the Bahamas and back from Maryland. We sailed in all kinds of conditions. We kept a detailed blog of our trip - with a number of sailing stories: many of which commented on performance. You can find them in our Yahoo group the name of which is "RuthandPierce". Message number 177, 193, and 210 all contain descriptions of our experiences making passages in Wabi Sabi, but there are many other posts that talk about life aboard an Alajuela 38 and her sailing characteristics. I'd post links, but Sailnet won't let me until my "post count" is 2 or greater.
s/v Wabi Sabi, Galesville, MD