First off, boat building is a small margin, high risk business and so companies of all stripes come and go with a pretty high rate of turn over.
There have been two companies called ''US Yachts''. I am assuming that you mean the one from the 1970''s through 1980''s rather than the 1960''s company that specialized in mid-cockpit motor sailors.
The later US Yachts was a spin off of Bucaneer which was a spin off of Bayliner Power Boats if I remember correctly. Bucaneer is and was a company reviled for poor quality boats, both in terms of design and build quality. They revamped their line in the late 1970''s or so adding a number of IOR racing rule influenced designs that were halfway decent designs. It was at that time that the name of the model line became US Yachts.
Almost from their introduction these boats became obsolete because by the early to mid 1980''s (in the wake of the Fastnet Disaster and the introduction of the J-24) small boats ceased being shaped by IOR rule considerations and interior layouts changed pretty dramatically.
US Yachts sold off some of thier tooling and I believe that Pearson produced the 27 so it showed up as the Triton II (not to be mistaken for the original Carl Alberg designed boat). The Perason boats were far and away better constucted as the USYacht 27 was choped glass and the Pearson wasn''t.
What do you mean chopped glass. Is it really
that bad of a boat? Boy I guess they must
have seen me coming? Well what did I know they see a lady and take full advantage. That''s not right. Anyway shortly after I bought it I saw a 30ft Hunter I wanted but it
was too late I had already bought this boat.
Know anyone who wants to but a boat cheap?
To answer your questions:
What do you mean chopped glass?
What we usually call ''fiberglass'' is actually one of many different materials. Normal fiber glass consists of polyester resin reinforced with fiberglass fibers. These fibers can be be in fabric form such as the normal cloths that you would see for amatuer glass work, special types of cloth in which the fibers are carefully oriented (bi or tri-axial cloth) or coursely woven (such as roving) or in a kind of felt, called mat.
Then there are Tows, which are simply fiber oriented in one direction. Each of these have advantages for certain applications.
In a general sense these fabrics are cut to shape, and wet out with resin, and hand laid in a mold in manner that forces out air and surplus resin. In better boats the direction of the fabric is carefully oriented to improve strength and flexure quality.
Chopped glass is what it sounds like. Tows of fiber are fed through a chopper gun where the fibers are cut into short lengths and sprayed out a nozzle with catalyzed resin. It is the cheapest way to lay up a boat.
Done right, it is not too bad. But chopped glass is very dependent on the operator to get a proper fiber orientation and the correct resin to fiber ratio. Often choped glass boats also use a lot of accelerator. Done improperly you can end up with a boat with inadequate resin or cloth or poor fiber orientation. In the 1970''s I had a job commissioning trailerable sailboats. We had a brand new boat that someone stepped through the bottom of. When we looked at the boat, there was a layer of gelcoat on the outside and a skim of resin on the inside and dry glass in between. That is a worst case.
Even in the best case the short fiber length that is typical of chopped glass means that the final product is more prone to fatigue and fail over time. Beyond that choped glass requires a slightly more resin rich laminate than other forms of fiberglass further reducing its strength over time.
Is it really that bad of a boat?
These are not great boats. If the boat has been surveyed and corrections made to any deficiencies noted, it is probably fine for coastal messing about. These are not my idea of an offshore boat by any stretch of the imagination. They have acquired a bad reputation that probably exceeds the real quality of the boat, but after sailing on them and repairing them, their reputation does not exceed them by much.
Boy I guess they must have seen me coming?
Probably not. There is a cover for every pot and this may actually be an OK boat in the short haul. You have already bought the old girl. You might as well try to enjoy her. Just don''t put too much money into fixing her up.
Thank you for answering my questions. By the
way your a really smart guy. You seem to know a great deal about sailing. I sailed alot on the North shore of long Island. I never really ventured into the ocean with her I guess partly because I don''t totally trust her. The interior is really beautiful
I have oak battans and lots of teak. I love that teak. It also has lots of headroom.
To answer your question about the survey
well I did have her surveyed but I don''t really think the guy knew what he was doing.
I think he just said everything was in good shape so he could get his money and leave. I could be wrong but I don''t think so. I was
quite a novice when I bought the boat and did''t realize certain things until after I bought it. For instance she doesn''t move well in reverse at all. It is a volvo diesel
engine. The first time I took her out she shook so bad all the bolts came loose. Then
I went to dock her and someone at the marina
ran into the port side of her. It seems I didn''t really start out with to much luck. What is really funny is when I bought her I didn''t like the name because it was strange.
But I knew it was bad luck to change the name
of a boat so I left it. I probable should have renamed her right? Maybe I would have had better luck. Well anyway thanks for the information . I enjoy talking with you.
No it belongs to my friend. He is the one responsible for teaching me to sail. He was given a Buccaneer a few years ago. It floats,sails and gets you there. Since I have purchased my own boat. Its a Cal 2-29 love it. Thanks
Here is the hot skippy about Buccaneer and US. Yachts. First of all, I don''t recall ever crawling through a US Yacht that was chopped glass, though I have only been inside two of them. Both were hand laid with roven woving, as was my Buccaneer. US Yachts are actually a step above the Buccaneer line, which was poorly designed for perfomance in order to place large boat living accomidations in a small boat. Which they did!
I sail and 1975 Buccaneer 270. I do not sail offshore, but have been in some considerable weather on the Puget Sound. I am not completely comfortable with the size of the rigging and with the placement of the ballast, but the boat holds up surprisingly well in a blow. Most of my uncertainty about the boat likely stems from the considerable amount of heresay and bashing that has gone on regarding these boats.
Whether you were "had" or not depends on what you paid for your Buccaneer. The resale value of them has been increasing in the northwest, but you can still have a US Yacht in good condition in the 27 foot ranger for under 10 grand and closer to about 6.
These boats have been sailed offshore and I haven''t seen any design horror stories, but I don''t really want to go there either. If you checked on my website you saw a link to other Buccaneer Websites. One of them is the Buccaneer Homeport, which is run by a fellow named Jeff who sails a Buccaneer 280 out in the ocean off of Long Is. NY.
I can only speak for the Buccaneer from a technical standpoint. The Buccaneer (and US Yachts) line have been the black sheep of sailing since introduced mainly because Buccaneer Yachts was owned by a powerboat company (Bayliner).Most of the negative comments are unfounded , and many are pure fiction. I have owned two Buccaneers (and a number of others, Columbia, Morgan, Newport, O''day) the 240 and the 270. The boats are NOT! chop, they are hand laid, with structural components tabbed to the hull. I was confronted by this attitude with my 240, I offered to take a number of people out on the boat Including a professional captain . I let them inspect the boat and sail it themselves. They all changed their opinion.No, they do not point well, no shoal draft fixed keel does, but careful attention to tunning your rig and sail trim helps considerably.If your engine vibrated the mounting bolts loose on your first time out, you got a bad survey!The boats are not bluewater boats, they are coastal cruisers, as most production boats are.Just enjoy your boat.
I own a Buccaneer 285 center cockpit with the Volvo md6b diesel. I live in Oceanside, on the South Shore of Long Island. I would be happy to talk with you about your boat and I invite you and a guest down to take a look at mine. She is in the water all year, so we might even go for a sail.
I am the webmaster of a site called The Buccaneer''s Home Port, which is deadicated to sharing knowledge and experience related to the Buccaneer. The site grew out of my frustration with trying to find info about the boat when I bought her. It seems to have grown into quite a resource for sailors, so take a look. The address is www.geocities.com/buccaneersailboats
Feel free to email me at [email protected]
In regards to the questions raised on this message thread, I wish to post a question that was sent in to my site and my response. I think it relivant. Here goes:
I recently saw an ad for a 30'' foot Buccaneer which caught my attention. Curious as to what a comparable boat would be. Catalina? Lighter of heavier construction? Any info would be appriciated.
I can be contacted at [email protected]
For documentation on the boat that may shed some light on how it''s built and it''s features, check out the owners manual on Kevin Bell''s great site: www.cnw.com/`bell/ownersmanual.html and the specs on the main page here at the Buccaneer''s Homeport.
As far as a personal opinion, as the owner of a Bucc 285C and previously an O''Day 23, I can tell you what I like and don''t like about both.
The O''Day has a solid glass hull. I prefer a solid hull to the Buccaneer''s balsa cored hull for its lower chance of problems. I have had to do repairs on both boats, blisters on the O''Day and replace a section of core on the Bucc. The cored hull was fin when I got her. I made a stupid mistake and left some leaves covering the cockpit drain. After a week of rain I came down to the boat to see 5 inches of water in the cockpit Anything higher washed into the boat and found some spyder cracks in the inside layer of glass. The water was pumped out and the boat cleaned up and all was well I thought. A year later I was walking aft when i heard a distinct "squish". I knew I had water in there and after a few test holes in the inner skin once I was on land, I found out the extent of the damage and that it was fresh water, not salt ( You really DON"T want to taste it, trust me) and I figured out how it must have gotten in there. The repair itself was easy as the boat has no interior pan liner and there is access to most places. With the guidance of a surveyor nieghbor of mine, I did the repair myself in about 20 hours of work over two weeks time. I used about $300 of epoxy, glass and balsa mat. A local yard wanted $900 for the repair and would have certainly have done it in less time.
That repair is common to balsa cored hulls in general, not just the Bucc.
The keel, which is internal (no keel bolts to worry about!, except for the Doug Petersen designs) offers no access. It is plywood and glassed over. If water ever gets in, it has no way to get out. A common owner retrofit is a bilge pump and access panel supplementing the factory one under the inboard engine.
The O''Day had balsa cored decks that had turned to mush from years of fresh water leaks from deck fittings. The inner linner/core/outer deck left no way to repair the damage. The Buccaneers use a marine plywood deck that is a rot resistant, if a little heavy.
Another easily fixed issue is port light leaks. The ports are plexiglass with silicone sealant in plastic frames. The silicone should be replaced every few years as preventive maintainance.
I would say the Buccs compare favorably with Catalinas and Hunters from the same period, perhaps leaning more towards Hunters. They are VERY roomy for their length and can be obtained cheaply given their size. They have great headroom. Like any 20 year old boat, it should be looked at by someone knowledgeable to spot the small problems that may be bargining chips and the large ones that tell you to move on.
They are a lot to fun to sail, stable and spacious. They are great coastal cruisers but not generally thought of for open water crossings. They are not the fastest boats (again, with the exception of the doug Petersen designs) and they don''t track as well as boats with a longer keel, but with a 3 foot draft they can gunkhole where the other boats can''t get to...so don''t be surprised if you find yourself at some beautiful secluded anchorage with the place to yourself...even if it does take you a while to get there.
End of letter
Inregards to Buccaneer''s history, Jeff H is pretty much on target. There is more detail on my site. In regards to Jeff H''s Comments, I too think that he is quite knowledgable and think his comments are accurate, although I have found only hand laid glass in my hull and a mix of chopper glass and hand laid roving in the deck unit. Their rep is worse than it should be, but that keeps the price low too. If you have a sound boat, enjoy her and when you outgrow her, you can certainly move up. Don''t spend $10grand trying to make a $5k boat into a $15k one, it won''t happen. But if you got her for a reasonable price you may have gotten a deal. I paid $3k for mine, and she was usable as was. I did put in some money but wanted to completely refurbish her to learn how. It was not nessasary. Even with the money I put in, I have a total of $8k in a boat worth $8-10k for insurance purposes and $5-7k for real world sales purposes. But she is a 28'' inboard diesel that is in virtually new condition. I rebuilt the diesel, all the electrical and mechanical systems, new interior, new plumbing..the works. She is ideal for the shallow South shore with a 3'' draft. She has TONS of room an is surprisingly comfortable in a 3-4'' swell. I sail in the Ocean off of Long Beach and in the bays on the South Shore. I would not take her to Burmuda, but for coastal cruising she is fine. There are 6 other Buccs on Long Island that I know of.
I hope this has been helpful,
The Buccaneer''s Home Port
To Jollyman Jeff
Thanks for the invitation. I might just take you up on that. Tell me do they still have the bikers and vintage cars at Nathans every tuesday night anymore? I am curious in reference to my boat, I recently renovated her. I had some water damage in the cabin area. So I had the floor redone. I was thinking of putting in some carpet. Do you have any suggestions as to what type I should use. I saw a beautiful boat in Oyster bay that had carpeting in it and I fell in love. Any suggestions? or do you think carpeting is a bad idea. Please let me know. And thanks again
I would stay away from carpet if given a choice. Its a boat. It eventually going to get wet...or at least damp, and salt water is really tought to get to dry well. you also could get a nasty smell. I prefer the traditional teak and holly sole. I have seen everything from stick on vinyl tiles (not a safe choice..slippery) to carpet to wood. I did the teak and holly for less than $200 (www.woodply.com in Freeport, NY) and I am very happy with it.
Nathans is still there, and bike night is mostly a summer thing now. It is nowhere near what it was ten years ago. Car night got shut down about 7 years ago..less classics and more kids driving like idiots. The cops had to ticket the hell out of the place when people were drag racing on Long Beach rd. It was too dangerous.
I will be taking the boat out this weekend and next Christmas caroling if you want a ride. This past saturday (12/1) was SO nice.
Thanks for the information about the idea of putting carpeting in my boat. You are right about that. I didn''t think about dampness really. You said there is a place in Freeport where I can get some flooring? I know Freeport pretty well. I used to manage a hotel there for 10 years. It was called The Yankee Clipper Motor Lodge. I''m sure you heard of it. I was wondering is it still there? Last I heard it wasn''t. Anyway thanks for the tip about the boat. Talk to you later. Eve
Ahoy, US Yacht owner, as distastefull as it is to me I have to agree with Jeff this time . The truth is , having worked in production glass boatbuilding I can say that Chopper rigs (The machine that sprays chopped glass and resin ) are very finiky devices which reguire endless tuning and maintenance and expert operation to be effective. With the possible exception of a hard dinghy I would never use this method of production for anything that carried me or my family out on the water. Balsa core''s aren''t much better for the very reasons you mentioned about soggy spots. Frankly I suggest you tow your miserable bad deal out to the bay and set it on fire. Next I suggest you take $100,000.00 and see Jeffs list on what to buy next. Third have Jeff find and arrange for the purchase of your new dream because no amount of professional expertise should be spared. (Just like money). I''m not sure if the " seen me comming " remark was a shot at sexual equality or not but if it was TOO BAD, were all equal it''s the law, don''t you know . Just remember there are three kinds of people : those who own sailboats(lucky), those who don''t own sailboats (unfortunate),and those who endlessly whine about quality,performance and IO or any other race standards (stupid). Why can''t you all just be happy and positive? Is it so hard to enjoy sailing ? Big Red 56
The Yankee Clipper....If I remember correctly, that was the no-tell motel that Joey Buttafucco and Amy fisher used to enjoy...Its still there but under a different name I think.
A great source for Teak & Holly flooring in Freeport is woodply lumber. www.woodply.com
They are just west of the Meadowbrook and 1 block North of Home Depot. They have jsut about every exotic wood there is. I also have a half sheet (2x8) left over from my projects. I would sell it for $80, half of the full sheets cost. Nobody sells 1/2 sheets on LI and I only needed a 1/2 sheet, so I had to buy a full one.
There is a project page on my website that details the installation of the floor, www.geocities.com/buccaneersailboats
also some pics at http://communities.msn.com/BaylinerBuccaneerSloops
You are partly correct about joey & Amy they stayed there at night mostly. My night man snuck them in on numerous occasion''s. I can''t tell you how many people I had to dodge during that episode. Eyewitness News, People magazine, detectives etc. This was to keep our lodge respectable. The main stay of the notorious couple was Freeport Motel. Anyway, getting back to the half sheet that you have. Is it teak wood or teak like wood? I gave alot of thought about what you said about the carpet. I''ve decided against it. Your right that would be a mess in no time. I''m going to check out your website now. Jeff have a really great holiday and thank''s for the info. Talk to you later
The wood is Teak & Holly veneered marine plywood. It is 1/4 inch thick. It is what is used in most better boats these days. I don''t know of anyone who uses solid teak and holly, only the ply. Here is a link to a pic. The lighter part has not been varnished yet. There are many suppliers of this product. Boulter plywood, noah''s boatbuilding supply. Put teak & holly into a search engine to find some other places, verify the product and price.
You have a great holdiay as well.