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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a first time buyer and am enrolled in sailing courses. I will be living aboard as well. I am considering a Kirby 30 and a Catalina 27. The "Catalina Smile" makes me nervous and the deck reputation of the Kirby. I am more interested in the Kirby. Any thoughts.
 

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I am a first time buyer and am enrolled in sailing courses. I will be living aboard as well. I am considering a Kirby 30 and a Catalina 27. The "Catalina Smile" makes me nervous and the deck reputation of the Kirby. I am more interested in the Kirby. Any thoughts.
Welcome to SailNet and to sailing. Lots I could comment on here but I'll just say that the "smile" is not unique to Catalina. We had it, got it fixed. Done.
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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The Kirby 30 and the Catalina 27 are extremely different types of boats. I have raced both. I owned a Kirby 25 and have sailed on Kirby 30's on a number of occasions. If you are looking for a very good PHRF race boat, the Kirby 30's remain wonderful boats to own. There were a number of Kirby 30's that have been modified with either masthead rigs or masthead chutes and those boats do especially well in lighter air venues. But the K-30's lack the accommodations of the Cat 27, but they are wildly faster, much easier to sail, and much better constructed. They also have much better deck plans.

Jeff
 

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The Catalina 27 smile is caused by improper cradle storage - the rear of the keel should not be blocked as it hangs lower than the forward end. Bloc in the middle or forward only. That said it is not a major problem even if it has caused failure of the forward keel bolt. (Talk the mfg. tech support - the fix is simple and not expensive.)

The living space on the C27 is more in tune with comfort than any of the purpose built racing boats I have seen.
Whatever you choose - have fun - safely.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have scratched the Kirby. It has come down to 2 boats. A 79 Cat 27 Bermudan or a 68Islander 27. Both look to be dry and solid and are priced in the 5000 dollar range. It's early fall and I'm ready to buy in September so maybe some haggling may be in order.
So far, this forum has been such a good resource so once again, any thoughts?
 
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