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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello... after two years and dozens of boats my boyfriend and I have finally found what we think is "the one". We are both first time boat owners- he is a captain with plenty of catamaran sailing/maintenance experience and I... spend a lot of time researching (reading books, forums, etc.) and sailing with friends. "The" boat is a 44' Bruce Roberts (1989), displaces 29,000 lbs and has a 8'3 draft. In all of my searches I have never seen such a deep draft! Do you think we'll have problems in harbors/anchorages around the South Pacific? We plan on cruising in 3-5 years. What do you think about these Bruce Roberts designs? It was built by Gary Alward- has anyone heard of this guy? We're looking at it tomorrow- what should I look for to determine that this boat is a good build? Please advise!
 

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Hi TD, I own a Roberts Classic 45 and I am happy with the design, which is pretty close to the Roberts 44. However I have never heard of a Roberts 44 (I assume it is an Offshore 44?) with an 8ft draft. Most of the Roberts around this length either have a shoal draft of 5 ft or a deep draft of 6ft 8ft is very deep and I imagine it will restrict your cruising locations. It also suggests that someone has altered the standard design of the boat.

I would also recommend you get a good surveyor; being mostly built by amateurs build quality on Roberts can range from very good to bloody awful. They can also advise on any design issues with the 8ft draft.

Good luck, Ilenart
 

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1977 Morgan OI 30
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Yacht world?

Did a quick YW search and that boat does draw over 8 feet. I'm on the N.Atlantic and while some use those deeper drafts, its too deep for me or those who like to visit shallow areas.
 

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If you do a quick check of some of the places you want to go you'll find out 8' is too much draft. BUT..... it can be cut down and a ballast bulb installed. They come in bulb form or wing type to the keel. Really not so hard to do. If you cut down the keel you need to weigh the cut off portion and add 5% to compensate for the righting moment.
 

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Yep, we have a Roberts 44 offshore, 5.5 draft. Built like a tank and I would take her anywhere. Huge space and great for livaboard. We love it and would never change boats. Go walk on a couple of production boat decks and watch them flex and squeak! True some were built by fools but get a good survey and you should be OK. Great design though some on this forum would say diff.
 

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No way I would ever buy a boat with that much draft. That basically rules out the entire state of Fl, Bahamas, and a BUNCH Of other places (somehwat sarcastic... not a lot). I realize you are going the other way, but there could also be a time that the Bahamas or Fl would be of interst and you would have to anchor that thing in the Tongue of the Ocean!!!!

Just my opinion...

Brian
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the input everyone. Sure enough, we went to see it today and were told that it was an estimate... between 6-8 feet. Looks like we'll have to measure it once it's out of the water. Thankfully, we really have no desire to sail around FL (I moved out of the MidWest to get away from Florida vacations!) but that's still good info to know. It's nice having a support group!
 

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Td.
If it is an Offshore 44 than they are a very good design. The sailing equivalent of a tank however. Obviously yeah alot of these were amateur built get a good survey as others have already suggested. Bruce Roberts has a pretty good website, go have a good look at the design and specs there. I would also suggest that if they do want to sell you the boat that they should go measure the draft....
 

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I'd check the waterline. If she's overloaded or overbalasted, she could sit up to 18" low on her marks. If she's designed for a 6.5' draft then 18" could put her at 8'. Aft she should have 4'6" of freeboard, forward, 5'9". For steel, She'll sit about 4" lower.
 

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Anyone know whatever happened with this? I have a feeling the boat I'm seeing listed in Hawaii is the same boat in question and wanted to know what was found out about the boat and the builder.
 

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8 foot draft is not an insurmountable problem in the Pacific. There are only a few anchorages which would be denied to you.

Just don't try the ICW.
 

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Honestly I am less worried about the draft and more interested in why the interest in the boat dropped off so quickly...if something was found that would point to why it hasn't sold in 2 years.
 

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Boat sales are moving very slowly in lots of places around the world. I sold my Roberts 45 about a year ago and the new yacht I purchased was on the market at least 2 years. Unless sellers are prepared to drop their prices and meet the market the yachts can easily sit unsold for years.

Ilenart
 

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Roberts designs can also often be homebuilt problems waiting to sink. If the one you're looking at wasn't built in Hawaii, that's a good sign.
 

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Gorgeous Yachts, we just bought one built of mahogany. Anyone who critisizes obviously doesn't understand what is required of an offshore yacht. My first trip was a solo voyage through the Cook Strait of New Zealand overnight with wind sppeds of 40 knots plus . She handled superbly.
 

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I doubt anyone would consider Roberts to be the most original of designers but plenty of his boats have put a lot of seas miles beneath their keels. Otoh, it is fair for PaulK to note that many of them are backyarders of extremely dubious quality.

Personally I am no great fan of e.g. the Spray variations but I've been on board one that was half way through a circumnavigation and while no racehorse was an extremely comfortable old thing. Been on board others that I couldn't escape from quickly enough.

It is the point with anything that might have been amateur built .... be careful and do very thorough inspection. Insurance, unless the backyarder has been certified as being built to a professional standard may also be an issue.
 
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