Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Well I can think of no boat that gets discouraging reviews more than the Westsail 32, other than perhaps the McGreggor 26 with the 50 horse outboard. The term "Wet Snail" comes to mind. Most 30 year old cruisers will be fin keel anyway and will obviously point a bit higher given a decent set of sails. But for me it is the potential of dipping that big sail when going down wind (also the best point of sail for the boat) that is most concerning.There are very few 30yr old cruisers that could make upwind VMG better than a properly sailed Nonsuch, and none easier single or doublehanded. They can outpoint any full keel cruising sloop, but I rarely hear anyone say "don't buy a Westsail, they don't sail to windward". If a Nonsuch has one fault for a sailor, it's that they are relatively boring to sail. The old joke is that a racing crew has three people; helmsman, trimmer, & wine steward! Nonsuches have collected enough pickle dishes in whitesail & shorthanded races to prove their sailing abilities. Their rig just sails & trims differently.
They're not a boat for rounding the Horn or exploring the NW Passage, but anywhere you'd take a cruising catamaran you could sail a Nonsuch, and for a couple do it far more cheaply with almost as much interior living space.
I like some of the Cat Ketch rigs like the Freedom and Offshore for sailing simplicity. Gives more choice as to the sail configuration and has smaller easier to manage sails. So there are some boats to compare and the Freedom's are certainly of similar quality build. I think Nonsuch's are lovely boats, I just think some owners are very unrealistic as to what they are worth, and I am seeing them at much more reasonable prices than when this post was started about a year ago. One boat that was listed at 89,000 is still listed (at least as of a month ago) and the last asking price was something like 59,000 certainly more realistic. It looked to be very clean and well maintained but has been for sale for a couple of years now.