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11 Best Pocket Cruiser Sailboats to Fit a Budget

  • By Cruising World Staff
  • Updated: May 24, 2024

Looking for a trailerable pocket cruiser that offers that liveaboard feeling? This list features 11 small sailboats with cabins that have the amenities often found on larger vessels. They may not be ocean crossing vessels, but they’re certainly capable of handling big bays and open waters.

What is a pocket cruiser? It’s a small trailerable sailboat, typically under 30 feet in length, that’s ideal for cruising big lakes, bays, coastal ocean waters, and occasionally bluewater cruising. Pocket cruisers are usually more affordable, compact, and offer a level of comfort that’s comparable to bigger liveaboards.

Small cruising sailboats are appealing for many reasons, but if you’re like most of us, you want to maintain a certain level of comfort while on the water. We took a poll and these are what we found to be the best cruising sailboats under 30 feet.

– DON’T LET CARBON MONOXIDE SNEAK UP ON YOU – Install detectors on your boat to sniff out any buildup of carbon monoxide gas. Avoid running engines or generators while anchored or stopped for extended periods. Safety Tip Provided by the U.S. Coast Guard

Andrews 28

Open and airy below deck, the Andrews 28 doesn’t sacrifice comfort for speed. Designed by Alan Andrews, the Southern California naval architect renowned for his light, fast raceboats, this 28-footer will certainly appeal to the cruiser who also enjoys a little club racing. Sporting a total of 6 berths, a galley, head and nav area, you might forget you are on a boat small enough to be easily trailered. The retractable keel allows the Andrews 28 to be easily launched and hauled and ensures it’s as comfortable as a daysailer as it is a racer. Click here to read more about the Andrews28.

Beneteau First 20

First 20 at sunset

Small sailboat with a cabin? Check! Fun to sail? Modern design? Capable of flying a spinnaker? Check! Check! Check! The Finot-Conq-designed Beneteau First 20, which replaced the popular Beneteau first 211 nearly a decade ago now, is a sporty-but-stable pocket cruiser suitable for newcomers to the sport who are eager to learn their chops before moving up to a bigger boat or for old salts looking to downsize to a trailerable design. The boat features twin rudders, a lifting keel, and a surprisingly roomy interior with bunks for four. Click here to read more about the Beneteau First 20 .

Ranger 26

Conceived as a way to bridge the gap between a safe, comfortable, family cruiser and a competitive racer, Gary Mull’s Ranger 26 does exactly as it was designed to. Undeniably fast, (one won the 1970 IOR North American Half-Ton Cup) the boat sails as well as it looks. However speed isn’t the Ranger’s only strong-suit, with over 7 feet of cockpit there’s plenty of room for socializing after an evening of racing. The Ranger 26 sports a nice balance of freeboard and cabin height ensuring that a handsome profile wasn’t sacrificed for standing headroom. Click here to read more about the Ranger 26.

Nonsuch 30 left side

Catboats were once a common site in coastal waters, where they sailed the shallow bays as fishing or work boats. Their large single and often gaff-rigged sail provided plenty of power, and a centerboard made them well-suited for the thin waters they frequently encountered. In the late 1970s, Canadian builder Hinterhoeller introduced the Nonsuch 30, a fiberglass variation of the catboat design, with a modern Marconi sail flown on a stayless mast, and a keel instead of a centerboard. The boat’s wide beam made room below for a spacious interior, and the design caught on quickly with cruising sailors looking for a small bluewater sailboat. Click here to read more about the Nonsuch 30 .

– SHOW THEM HOW MUCH YOU CARE – Nothing says ‘I love you’ like making sure the kids’ life jackets are snugged up and properly buckled. Safety Tip Provided by the U.S. Coast Guard

Newport 27

Debuted in 1971 in California, the Newport 27 was an instant success on the local racing scene. For a modest 27-footer, the Newport 27 has an unusually spacious interrior with over 6 feet of standing headroom. With 4 berths, a table, nav station, head and galley the Newport 27 has all the amenities you might find in a much bigger boat, all in a compact package. While quick in light air, the drawback of the tiller steering becomes apparent with increasing breeze and weather helm often leading to shortening sail early. Click here to read more about the Newport 27.

Balboa 26

First splashed in 1969, the Balboa 26 continues to enjoy a strong following among budget-minded cruisers. Built sturdy and heavy, all of the boat’s stress points are reinforced. The spacious cockpit comfortably seats 4 and is self bailing, ensuring that sailors stay dry. While only 26 feet, the Balboa still has room for a double berth, galley with stove and freshwater pump, and an optional marine head or V-berth. The Balboa has the ability to sleep five, though the most comfortable number is two or three. Under sail, the Balboa is fast and maneuverable, but may prove a handful in heavy breeze as weather helm increases. Click here to read more about the Balboa 26.

Cape Dory 28

Cape Dory 28

While the sleek lines and the teak accents of the Cape Dory 28 may grab the eye, it is the performance of the boat that make it unique. The Cape Dory comes with all amenities that you might need available, including a V-berth, 2 settees, and a head. Safe, sound and comfortable as a cruiser it is still capable of speed. Quick in light wind and sturdy and capable in heavy air, it is off the wind where the Cape Dory 28 shines with a balanced helm and the ability to cut through chop and still tack perfectly. Click here to read more about the Cape Dory 28.

Islander Bahama 28

Islander Bahama 28

On top of being a real eye-catcher, the Islander Bahama 28, with its 5-foot-6-inch draft and 3,300 pounds of ballast, sails beautifully, tracks well, and responds quickly to the helm. Inspired by the International Offshore Rule, it is unusually wide, offering stability in breeze without sacrificing the sheer and lines that make it so attractive. Below deck, the Islander Bahama 28 comes standard with plenty of berths and storage space and a galley complete with stove, icebox and sink. Click here to read more about the Islander Bahama 28.

– CHECK THE WEATHER – The weather changes all the time. Always check the forecast and prepare for the worst case. Safety Tip Provided by the U.S. Coast Guard

S2 8.6

Much like its older sibling, the S2 8.6 still holds its contemporary style, despite its 1983 introduction. Like all other S2 Yachts, the 8.6 is recognized for the quality craftsmanship that allows the boat to hold up today.The S2 8.6 is a very comfortable and easily managed coastal cruiser and club racer. It’s relatively stiff, its helm feels balanced, and it tracks well. On most points of sail, it compares favorably with other boats of similar size and type. Click here to read more about the S2 8.6.

Contessa 26

Contessa 26

When the Contessa 26 was released in 1965, it immediately proved itself to be a strong, seaworthy vessel. The Contessa has continued to prove itself throughout its lifetime, being the boat of choice for two solo circumnavigations under the age of 21. While upwind performance leaves some wanting, the boat is sturdy and can carry full sail in up to 20 knots of breeze. Suited more for single-handing, the Contessa lacks standing headroom and the accommodations are sparse. Nonetheless, the Contessa 26 performs well as a daysailer with guests aboard. Click here to read more about the Contessa 26.

Hunter 27

The Hunter 27 perfectly encompasses the pocket cruiser ideal. Even if you don’t want a big boat, you can still have big boat amenities. With the generously spacious layout, wheel steering and a walkthrough transom the Hunter feels much larger than 27 feet. Step below deck and any doubts you had that the Hunter was secretly a big boat will be gone. The amenities below are endless; a full galley including stove, microwave and cooler, head with full shower, several berths and not to mention a saloon with seating for 6. The Hunter 27 has reset the benchmark for 27-footers. Click here to read more about the Hunter 27.

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Sail Universe

9 Small Sailboats Under 30 Ft We Love

Our editorial staff selected 9 small sailboats under 30′ from all over the world. Today small sailboats have electronics for navigation and entertainment, an engine for light wind and accomodations to sleep onboard. Which is your preferred one between these 9 small sailboats?

Albin Vega 27

28 foot full keel sailboat

The Albin Vega 27 is a fiberglass sailboat that was produced by the Albin Motor Boat Company in the 1970s. It is a small, versatile vessel that is popular with sailors due to its good performance and comfortable interior. The Albin Vega 27 has a length of 27 feet (8.2 meters) and a beam (width) of 8.1 feet (2.46 meters). It is designed to be sailed single-handed, but can accommodate up to six people.

  • Hull Type:  Long fin keel
  • Hull Material:   GRP (fibreglass)
  • Length Overall:  27′ 1″ / 8.25m
  • Waterline Length:  23′ 0″ / 7.01m
  • Beam:  8′ 1″ / 2.46m
  • Draft:  3′ 8″ / 1.12m
  • Rig Type:  Masthead sloop
  • Displacement:  5,070lb / 2,300kg
  • Designer:  Per Brohall
  • Builder:  Albin Marine AB (Sweden)
  • Year First Built:  1965
  • Year Last Built:  1979
  • Number Built:  3,450

Alpin Ballad 

28 foot full keel sailboat

  • Hull Type:  Fin with skeg-hung rudder
  • Length Overall:  29′ 11″ / 9.12m
  • Waterline Length:  22′ 7″ / 6.88m
  • Beam:  9′ 8″ / 2.95m
  • Draft:  5′ 1″ / 1.55m
  • Rig Type:  Masthead Sloop
  • Displacement:  7,276lb / 3,300kg
  • Designer:  Rolf Magnusson
  • Builder:  Albin Marine (Sweden)
  • Year First Built:  1971
  • Year Last Built:  1982
  • Number Built:  1500

28 foot full keel sailboat

The Bristol 24 has a length of 24.6 feet (7.5 meters) and a beam (width) of 8 feet (2.4 meters). It is designed to be sailed by a small crew, but can accommodate up to four people. The boat has a displacement of 4,920 lb (2,685 kilograms) and is equipped with a standard keel.

  • Hull Type:  Long Keel
  • Hull Material:  GRP (Fibreglass)
  • Length Overall:  24′ 6″ / 7.5m
  • Waterline Length:  18′ 1″ / 5.5m
  • Beam:  8′ 0″ / 2.4m
  • Draft:  3′ 5″ / 1.0m
  • Displacement:  5,920lb / 2,685kg
  • Designer:  Paul Coble
  • Builder:  Bristol Yachts inc (US)
  • Year First Built:  1969
  • Year Last Built:  1972
  • Number Built:  800

Contessa 28

28 foot full keel sailboat

The Contessa 24 is a fiberglass sailboat that was designed by David Sadler and produced by the Contessa Yachts company in the 1970s. The Contessa 24 has a length of 27.8 feet (8.43 meters) and a beam (width) of 9.5 feet (2.87 meters). It is designed to be sailed by a small crew, but can accommodate up to four people. The boat has a displacement of 3,162 kilograms and is equipped with a fin keel, which provides stability and improves its performance in a range of wind and sea conditions.

  • Hull Type:  fin keel with spade rudder
  • Hull Material:  GRP (Fiberglass)
  • Length Overall:  27′ 8″ / 8.43m
  • Waterline Length:  22′ 0″ / 6.71m
  • Beam:  9′ 5″ / 2.87m
  • Draft:  4′ 10″ / 1.47m
  • Rig Type:  Masthead sloop
  • Displacement:  6,970lb / 3,162kg
  • Designer:  Doug Peterson
  • Builder:  Jeremy Rogers
  • Year First Built:  1977

28 foot full keel sailboat

The Dufour 29 is a fiberglass sailboat that was produced by the Dufour Yachts company in the 1970s. The Dufour 29 has a length of 29.4 feet (8.94 meters) and a beam (width) of 9.8 feet (2.95 meters). It is designed to be sailed by a small crew but can accommodate up to six people. The boat has a displacement of 7,250 pounds (3,289 kilograms) and is equipped with a fin keel.

  • Length Overall:  29′ 4″ / 8.94m
  • Waterline Length:  25′ 1″ / 7.64m
  • Draft:  5′ 3″ / 1.60m
  • Displacement:  7,250lb / 3,289kg
  • Designer:  Michael Dufour
  • Builder:   Dufour (France)
  • Year First Built:  1975
  • Year Last Built:  1984

Great Dane 28

28 foot full keel sailboat

The Great Dane 28 is a fiberglass sailboat that was produced by the Great Dane Yachts company in the 1970s. The Great Dane 28 has a length of 28 feet (8.5 meters) and a beam (width) of 10.4 feet (3.2 meters). It is designed to be sailed by a small crew, but can accommodate up to six people. The boat has a displacement of 8,500 pounds (3,856 kilograms) and is equipped with a fin keel.

  • Hull Type:  Long keel with transom-hung rudder
  • Length Overall:  28′ 0″ / 8.5m
  • Waterline Length:  21′ 4″ / 6.5m
  • Beam:  10′ 4″ / 3.2m
  • Draft:  4′ 6″ / 1.4m
  • Displacement:  8,500lb / 3,856kg
  • Designer:  Aage Utzon in conjunction with Klaus Baess
  • Builder:  Klauss Baess, Copenhagen (Denmark)
  • Year Last Built:  1989
  • Number Built:  300

small sailboats 3

The Sabre 27 is a fiberglass sailboat that was produced by the Sabre Yachts company in the 1970s. The Sabre 27 has a length of 27 feet (8.2 meters) and a beam (width) of 9 feet (2.6 meters). The boat has a displacement of 6,800 pounds (3,084 kilograms) and is equipped with a fin keel.

  • Hull Type:  Fin and skeg-hung rudder
  • Hull Material:  GRP (fibreglass)
  • Length Overall:  27′ 0″ / 8.2m
  • Waterline Length:  22′ 2″ / 6.8m
  • Beam:  9′ 0″ / 2.7m
  • Displacement:  6,800lb / 3,084kg
  • Designer:  Alan Hill
  • Builder:  Marine Construction Ltd (UK)
  • Number Built:  400

small sailboats 2

  • Hull Type:  Long keel with transom-hung rudder
  • Length Overall:  28′ 3″ / 8.6m
  • Waterline Length:  21′ 6″ / 6.6m
  • Beam:  8′ 1″ / 2.5m
  • Draft:  5′ 0″ / 1.5m
  • Rig Type:  masthead sloop
  • Displacement:  9,968lb / 4,521kg
  • Designer:  Kim Holman
  • Builder:  Uphams (UK) and Tyler (UK)
  • Year First Built:  1964
  • Year Last Built:  1983
  • Number Built:  200

Westerly 22

small sailboats

The Westerly 22 is a fiberglass sailboat that was produced by the Westerly Yachts company in the 1970s. The Westerly 22 has a length of 22 feet (6.8 meters) and a beam (width) of 7.6 feet (2.3 meters).

  • Hull Type:~  Bilge keel and skeg-hung rudder
  • Hull Material:~  GRP (fibreglass)
  • Length Overall:~  22′ 3″ / 6.8m
  • Waterline Length:~  18′ 4″ / 5.6m
  • Beam:~  7′ 6″ / 2.3m
  • Draft:~  2′ 3″ / 0.7m
  • Rig Type:~  Masthead Sloop
  • Displacement:~  4,150lb / 1,429kg
  • Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: ~ 16.95
  • Displacement/Length Ratio: ~ 228
  • Designer:~  Denis Rayner
  • Builder:~  Westerly Marine Ltd (UK)
  • Year First Built:~  1963
  • Year Last Built:~  1967
  • Number Built:~  332

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WTH?!? why there is no boat which started it all? Pearson Triton 1959 first GRP production boat? many circumnavigated I with mine singlehandedly crossed Atlantic few times.

And no Westsail 28? :O who made this list must do better homework! ! your list is garbage!

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Home » Blog » Buy a boat » 5 best small sailboats for sailing around the world

5 best small sailboats for sailing around the world

By Author Fiona McGlynn

Posted on Last updated: April 19, 2023

sailing around the world

A small sailboat can take you big places

Small sailboats are the ticket to going cruising NOW — not when you retire, save up enough money, or find the “perfect” bluewater cruising boat. In fact, it’s the first principle in Lin and Larry Pardey’s cruising philosophy: “Go small, go simple, go now.”

Small yachts can be affordable, simple, and seaworthy . However, you won’t see many of them in today’s cruising grounds. In three years and 13,000 nautical miles of bluewater cruising, I could count the number of under 30-foot sailboats I’ve seen on one hand (all of them were skippered by people in their 20s and 30s).

Today’s anchorages are full of 40, 50, and 60-foot-plus ocean sailboats, but that’s not to say you can’t sail the world in a small sailboat. Just look at Alessandro di Benedetto who in 2010 broke the record for the smallest boat to sail around the world non-stop in his 21-foot Mini 6.5 .

So long as you don’t mind forgoing a few comforts, you can sail around the world on a small budget .

dinghy boat

What makes a good blue water sailboat

While you might not think a small sailboat is up to the task of going long distances, some of the best bluewater sailboats are under 40 feet.

However, if you’re thinking about buying a boat for offshore cruising, there are a few things to know about what makes a small boat offshore capable .

Smaller equals slower

Don’t expect to be sailing at high speeds in a pocket cruiser. Smaller displacement monohulls are always going to be slower than larger displacement monohulls (see the video below to learn why smaller boats are slower). Therefore a smaller cruiser is going to take longer on a given passage, making them more vulnerable to changes in weather.

A few feet can make a big difference over a week-long passage. On the last leg of our Pacific Ocean crossing, our 35-foot sailboat narrowly avoid a storm that our buddy boat, a 28-foot sailboat, couldn’t. Our friend was only a knot slower but it meant he had to heave to for a miserable three days.

pocket cruiser

Small but sturdy

If a pocket cruiser encounters bad weather, they will be less able to outrun or avoid it. For this reason, many of the blue water sailboats in this list are heavily built and designed to take a beating.

Yacht design has changed dramatically over the last 50 years. Today, new boats are designed to be light and fast. The small sailboats in our list are 30-plus year-old designs and were built in a time when weather forecasts were less accurate and harder to come by.

Back in the day, boat were constructed with thicker fiberglass hulls than you see in modern builds. Rigs, keels, rudders, hulls and decks – everything about these small cruising sailboats was designed to stand up to strong winds and big waves. Some of the boats in this post have skeg-hung rudders and most of them are full keel boats.

The pros and cons of pocket cruiser sailboats

Pocket cruiser sailboats present certain advantages and disadvantages.

More affordable

Their smaller size makes them affordable bluewater sailboats. You can often find great deals on pocket cruisers and sometimes you can even get them for free.

You’ll also save money on retrofits and repairs because small cruising sailboats need smaller boat parts (which cost a lot less) . For example, you can get away with smaller sails, ground tackle, winches, and lighter lines than on a bigger boat.

Moorage, haul-outs, and marine services are often billed by foot of boat length . A small sailboat makes traveling the world , far more affordable!

When something major breaks (like an engine) it will be less costly to repair or replace than it would be on a bigger boat.

how to remove rusted screw

Less time consuming

Smaller boats tend to have simpler systems which means you’ll spend less time fixing and paying to maintain those systems. For example, most small yachts don’t have showers, watermakers , hot water, and electric anchor windlasses.

On the flip side, you’ll spend more time collecting water (the low-tech way) . On a small sailboat, this means bucket baths, catching fresh water in your sails, and hand-bombing your anchor. Though less convenient, this simplicity can save you years of preparation and saving to go sailing.

Oh, and did I mention that you’ll become a complete water meiser? Conserving water aboard becomes pretty important when you have to blue-jug every drop of it from town back to your boat.

Easier to sail

Lastly, smaller boats can be physically easier to sail , just think of the difference between raising a sail on a 25-foot boat versus a 50-foot boat! You can more easily single-hand or short-hand a small sailboat. For that reason, some of the best solo blue water sailboats are quite petite.

As mentioned above small boats are slow boats and will arrive in port, sometimes days (and even weeks) behind their faster counterparts on long offshore crossings.

Consider this scenario: two boats crossed the Atlantic on a 4,000 nautical mile route. The small boat averaged four miles an hour, while the big boat averaged seven miles an hour. If both started at the same time, the small boat will have completed the crossing two weeks after the larger sailboat!

Less spacious

Living on a boat can be challenging — living on a small sailboat, even more so! Small cruising boats don’t provide much in the way of living space and creature comforts.

Not only will you have to downsize when you move onto a boat  you’ll also have to get pretty creative when it comes to boat storage.

It also makes it more difficult to accommodate crew for long periods which means there are fewer people to share work and night shifts.

If you plan on sailing with your dog , it might put a small boat right out of the question (depending on the size of your four-legged crew member).

boat galley storage ideas

Less comfortable

It’s not just the living situation that is less comfortable, the sailing can be pretty uncomfortable too! Pocket cruisers tend to be a far less comfortable ride than larger boats as they are more easily tossed about in big ocean swell.

Here are our 5 favorite small blue water sailboats for sailing around the world

When we sailed across the Pacific these were some of the best small sailboats that we saw. Their owners loved them and we hope you will too!

The boats in this list are under 30 feet. If you’re looking for something slightly larger, you might want to check out our post on the best bluewater sailboats under 40 feet .

Note: Price ranges are based on SailboatListings.com and YachtWorld.com listings for Aug. 2018

Albin Vega 27($7-22K USD)

small sailboats

The Albin Vega has earned a reputation as a bluewater cruiser through adventurous sailors like Matt Rutherford, who in 2012 completed a 309-day solo nonstop circumnavigation of the Americas via Cape Horn and the Northwest Passage (see his story in the documentary Red Dot on the Ocean ). 

  • Hull Type: Long fin keel
  • Hull Material: GRP (fibreglass)
  • Length Overall:27′ 1″ / 8.25m
  • Waterline Length:23′ 0″ / 7.01m
  • Beam:8′ 1″ / 2.46m
  • Draft:3′ 8″ / 1.12m
  • Rig Type: Masthead sloop rig
  • Displacement:5,070lb / 2,300kg
  • Designer:Per Brohall
  • Builder:Albin Marine AB (Swed.)
  • Year First Built:1965
  • Year Last Built:1979
  • Number Built:3,450

Cape Dory 28 ($10-32K USD) 

small sailboat

This small cruising sailboat is cute and classic as she is rugged and roomy. With at least one known circumnavigation and plenty of shorter bluewater voyages, the Cape Dory 28 has proven herself offshore capable.

  • Hull Type: Full Keel
  • Length Overall:28′ 09″ / 8.56m
  • Waterline Length:22′ 50″ / 6.86m
  • Beam:8’ 11” / 2.72m
  • Draft:4’ 3” / 1.32m
  • Rig Type:Masthead Sloop
  • Displacement:9,300lb / 4,218kg
  • Sail Area/Displacement Ratio:52
  • Displacement/Length Ratio:49
  • Designer: Carl Alberg
  • Builder: Cape Dory Yachts (USA)
  • Year First Built:1974
  • Year Last Built:1988
  • Number Built: 388

Dufour 29 ($7-23K)

small sailboat

As small bluewater sailboats go, the Dufour 29 is a lot of boat for your buck. We know of at least one that sailed across the Pacific last year. Designed as a cruiser racer she’s both fun to sail and adventure-ready. Like many Dufour sailboats from this era, she comes equipped with fiberglass molded wine bottle holders. Leave it to the French to think of everything!

  • Hull Type: Fin with skeg-hung rudder
  • Length Overall:29′ 4″ / 8.94m
  • Waterline Length:25′ 1″ / 7.64m
  • Beam:9′ 8″ / 2.95m
  • Draft:5′ 3″ / 1.60m
  • Displacement:7,250lb / 3,289kg
  • Designer:Michael Dufour
  • Builder:Dufour (France)
  • Year First Built:1975
  • Year Last Built:1984

Vancouver 28 ($15-34K)

most seaworthy small boat

A sensible small boat with a “go-anywhere” attitude, this pocket cruiser was designed with ocean sailors in mind. One of the best cruising sailboats under 40 feet, the Vancouver 28 is great sailing in a small package.

  • Hull Type:Full keel with transom hung rudder
  • Length Overall: 28′ 0″ / 8.53m
  • Waterline Length:22’ 11” / 6.99m
  • Beam:8’ 8” / 2.64m
  • Draft:4’ 4” / 1.32m
  • Rig Type: Cutter rig
  • Displacement:8,960lb / 4,064 kg
  • Designer: Robert B Harris
  • Builder: Pheon Yachts Ltd. /Northshore Yachts Ltd.
  • Year First Built:1986
  • Last Year Built: 2007
  • Number Built: 67

Westsail 28 ($30-35K)

small sailboat

Described in the 1975 marketing as “a hearty little cruiser”, the Westsail 28 was designed for those who were ready to embrace the cruising life. Perfect for a solo sailor or a cozy cruising couple!

  • Hull Type: Full keel with transom hung rudder
  • Hull Material:GRP (fibreglass)
  • Length Overall:28′ 3” / 8.61m
  • Waterline Length:23’ 6” / 7.16m
  • Beam:9’ 7” / 2.92m
  • Displacement:13,500lb / 6,124kg
  • Designer: Herb David
  • Builder: Westsail Corp. (USA)
  • Number Built:78

Feeling inspired? Check out the “go small” philosophy of this 21-year-old who set sail in a CS 27.

Fiona McGlynn

Fiona McGlynn is an award-winning boating writer who created Waterborne as a place to learn about living aboard and traveling the world by sailboat. She has written for boating magazines including BoatUS, SAIL, Cruising World, and Good Old Boat. She’s also a contributing editor at Good Old Boat and BoatUS Magazine. In 2017, Fiona and her husband completed a 3-year, 13,000-mile voyage from Vancouver to Mexico to Australia on their 35-foot sailboat.

Saturday 1st of September 2018

Very useful list, but incomplete - as it would necessarily be, considering the number of seaworthy smaller boats that are around.

In particular, you missed/omitted the Westerly "Centaur" and its follow-on model, the "Griffon". 26 feet LOA, bilge-keelers, weighing something over 6000 pounds, usually fitted with a diesel inboard.

OK, these are British designs, and not that common in the US, but still they do exist, they're built like tanks, and it's rumored that at least one Centaur has circumnavigated.

Friday 31st of August 2018

This is a helpful list, thank you. I don't think most people would consider a 28' boat a pocket cruiser, though!

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28 foot full keel sailboat

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28 foot full keel sailboat

BRISTOL CHANNEL CUTTER 28: A Salty Pocket Cruiser

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THIS IS A VERY TRADITIONAL CRUISING BOAT that evokes a strong emotional response from most sailors, but is also surprisingly functional and performance-oriented for a vessel of its size and type. Conceived by Lyle Hess , the BCC 28 is based on earlier Hess designs built in wood–specifically Renegade , a small gaff-rigged cutter that won the Newport-Ensenada Race two years running back in the 1950s, and Seraffyn , the famous 24-foot Marconi-rigged cutter that Lin and Larry Pardey sailed around the world during the 1970s.

Built in fiberglass by Sam L. Morse Co. of Costa Mesa, California, the BCC first appeared in 1976. The company went through three changes of control before finally closing its doors in 2007, at which time Cape George Cutter Marine Works , based in Port Townshend, Washington, acquired the molds for both the BCC and its smaller sibling, the 22-foot Falmouth Cutter, and announced it would continue building both boats. In all, over 125 Bristol Channel Cutters have been built to date.

With its long bowsprit, long keel with a full forefoot, and nearly vertical stem and stern, the BCC evokes classic pilot cutters and working boats that plied British waters during the 19th century. Unlike those old British boats, however, the BCC is much beamier relative to her length, with relatively hard bilges and a flat run aft. This makes her very stable (her AVS is 133 degrees) and allows her to stand up well to a large press of sail. The sail plan, though relatively low aspect, is large enough to take full advantage of this, thanks to the bowsprit forward and boomkin aft, which together add nearly 10 feet of length to the base of the rig.

By modern standards you cannot call the BCC a fast boat, but for a 28-foot boat with a full keel its performance is exceptional. Owners have reported maintaining average speeds of nearly 6 knots during long ocean passages. Daily runs as high as 180 miles have been logged on trans-Pacific cruises; at least one owner, aided by a strong current to be sure, has reported a 24-hour run in excess of 200 miles. The boat, thanks to its long keel, also tracks well and has a good motion in a seaway.

None of the boat’s speed can be attributed to a lack of weight, as its construction is heavy and nearly bombproof. The hull is solid handlaid laminate composed of up to 10 layers of mat, woven roving, and cloth. Laminate thickness varies from 3/8 inch at the sheerline, 1/2 inch at the waterline, to nearly 1-1/2 inches at the bottom of the hull. Exterior layers are set in vinylester resin to retard osmosis and many hulls also received an optional epoxy barrier coat at the factory.

The deck likewise is a heavy glass laminate with a 1/2-inch plywood core throughout, joined to the hull on a generous inward flange that is bedded with 3M 5200 adhesive sealant and through-bolted every 5 inches with fastener holes staggered to spread the load. Inside there are no less than four full-height bulkheads tabbed to both the hull and deck with fat 6-inch margins. The main bulkhead is drilled out every 18 inches all around its perimeter with the tabbing on either side bonded together through the holes to lock everything in place. There are also three-quarter bulkheads to further stiffen the structure; all interior furniture is likewise tabbed in place with 4-inch margins. The lead ballast is internal, carefully encapsulated in resin and glassed over in the bottom of the keel.

Thanks in part to all those bulkheads, the BCC’s interior feels neither open nor spacious. This is aggravated by the short, narrow cabinhouse, which terminates just aft of the keel-stepped mast. Inside the house there is a full 6’1″ of headroom (on some boats there is even 6’6″, as this is offered as an option), but moving forward you need to stoop to get to the small forward cabin, which again has headroom, but only under the raised scuttle hatch.

Though the interior feels chopped up and segmented, it has volume and is cleverly designed to make smart use of what space there is. The furniture is riddled with useful storage compartments, and the berthing is well conceived. In addition to the quarterberth aft to starboard, there is a pilot berth in the saloon to port that pulls out to form a full double. Another optional berth can be inserted in the forward cabin in place of the standard workbench; there is also an option wherein the entire saloon can be transformed into a giant queen-size berth. Though compact, the interior is well lit and ventilated, thanks to the traditional butterfly hatch over the saloon, numerous opening ports, that lofty scuttle forward, and a pair of full-sized dorade vents.

The BCC’s systems are simple and should be kept that way. Many boats don’t even have pressure water, though most do have a bulkhead heater to keep things cozy down below. The earliest boats had undersized 13-hp Volvo diesel engines; later ones have 27-hp Yanmar engines, which work much better.

By far the most daunting thing about the BCC is its price. It is an exceptionally well-crafted vessel, with superb joinerwork below and scads of quality hardware on deck, all of which costs good money. Early on (up to hull number 26), Sam L. Morse Co. sold bare hulls for owners to finish, and these should sell at a significant discount. But a factory-finished BCC is built like a piece of furniture (so goes the cliché), and though these cost a lot they do hold much of their value over time.

On the whole these boats are so carefully built there are few, if any, chronic flaws to repair or worry about. The biggest bother is keeping up with all the brightwork. On later boats all the exterior wood is mahogany, so it does need minding. Among other minor improvements the new builder, Cape George, is again making all the exterior wood teak, so if you really want to neglect your brightwork you can pony up for one of these. Cape George is also again offering bare hulls for owners to finish, so if you feel inclined to fit out your own piece of furniture to cruise the world in, you are welcome to try that, too.

Specifications

LOA: 37’9″ (including bowsprit and boomkin)

LOD: 28’1″

LWL: 26’3″

Beam: 10’1″

Draft: 4’10”

Ballast: 4,600 lbs.

Displacement: 14,000 lbs.

-100% foretriangle: 556 sq.ft.

-Full working sail: 637 sq.ft.

Fuel: 32 gal.

Water: 64 gal.

D/L ratio: 347

-100% foretriangle: 15.28

-Full working sail: 17.51

Comfort ratio: 36.92

Capsize screening: 1.67

Nominal hull speed: 6.8 knots

Typical asking prices: $90K – $200K

Base price new: $295K

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28 foot full keel sailboat

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Devlin Designing Boat Builders

Lit’l Coot 18 Full Keel

Devlin Boats , Sailboats

28 foot full keel sailboat

The Lit’l Coot 18 Full Keel is a is seaworthy and capable motorsailor with enough space on board for the organized sailor and enough potential to keep serious travelers satisfied. She is the sister to the original Lit’l Coot  with the same hull and the same tendency for balanced performance and maximal use of space, but the change to a fixed centerline keel allows her to stand up to weather that the original could not handle. This change also frees up space in the cabin, which makes her more comfortable for longer cruises. Twin rudders surround the outboard motor on the centerline to allow efficient motor cruising on an economical 9.9 hp outboard.

Read Sam’s design notes below for the big picture on the Lit’l Coot Full Keel.

The Lit’l Coot 18 Full Keel is available in study and full construction plans .

Precision cut CNC hull kit available here

28 foot full keel sailboat

Length 17 ft. – 10.5 in.
Beam 6 ft. – 11 in.
Draft 2 ft. – 6 in.
Power Outboard 9.9hp
Displacement 2300 lbs.
Ballast 650 lbs.
Sail Area 160 sq. ft.
Height on Trailer 8 ft. – 4 in.

Lit’l Coot Design Notes

Recently I was working on the plans for a small under 20ft. Pocket Sailor design but found during the process I couldn’t help but think about another design, one roughly the same size and in many respects similar in use, but the type I zeroed in on was a small Motorsailor.  This “Litl Coot” design is the result of my musings and dreams.  Now in this case, despite being my own design customer, I still needed to stay focused and set up a list of design parameters that the new design would accommodate.  First of all she needed to be very trailerable with the capability of sitting on a powerboat type trailer low and compact enough to be able to be backed into a garage or storage shed without any special needs.  So right away that got rid of any notion that I would need to design a deep keel for her.  I flirted with the idea of leeboards but quickly realized that a couple of hardwood Bilge Keels,  along with a centerline small shoe keel and aft skeg, would be just the ticket. The bilge keels also had the additional benefit that they would allow her to beach out level and upright if I got caught by a quickly receding tide in some of the shallow and very tidal bays that I was dreaming of using her on.  If you are a fan of classic literature, there is an excellent novel written just before World War One titled “Riddle of the Sands”.  The story is based near the Friesian Islands located off the N.W. shore of Holland and Germany.  These waters are a very tidal area and the descriptions of the main character straying off the dredged and poorly marked channels and getting caught on the sands in his shoal draft boat with all the extra adventures that one would have with that scenario, has always been appealing to me.  Anyway, it’s a great read. As I recollect, this is either one of the first or the very first Mystery Adventure novels written by Erskine Childers and it has had a prominent position in my library for many years.

But back to the “Litl Coot” design – once I had made the decision to give her bilge keels, that meant all her ballast needed to be in the bilge and my plan is to use recycled lead shot (I buy mine from one of the local trap and skeet shooting ranges) which is very nice to work with, all cleaned, in small canvas bags weighing 30 lbs. each and ready to be mixed with epoxy and set into her bilge.  I usually plan on casting about 75-85% of the anticipated ballast (in this case 600 lbs) before launching and then finish off the final ballasting after checking her trim in the water and re-assuring myself that the weight is located where it is most needed to keep her floating level and on her lines.  That reminds me of a story, several years ago my long-term landlord at my main shop (which I have rented for 28 years now) told me one day just after we had launched a new boat, that one of the things that amazed him most of all about my designing and building boats was how accurately I could predict the floating of the boat level and on her lines.  Well that was quite a compliment and I think that if I remember properly that I tried to pass it off as not being that hard to do! Within just a couple of weeks we had occasion to launch another new build (different design, one that we hadn’t built before) and the new vessel floated down on her lines by the stern. We had to add some (actually read quite a lot of) extra chain in her anchor locker to get her settled down on her lines (as designed). I often wondered if my landlord had somehow jinxed me by saying that they all floated on their lines so nicely, and having missed the mark on the very next boat project, the whole experience sobered me considerably.   It should go without saying that on the next design I spent almost twice as much time as I usually did on the weight study trying to not make the same mistake twice.

But back to our musings about the “Litl Coot” – now that we’ve got the keels on her and the ballast settled, it’s time to think about that engine package.  This is a pure 50/50 Motorsailor and on this size boat, I think the little 9.9 horsepower Yamaha 4 cycle engine in hi-thrust configuration is just about ideal.  It’s a great little engine, barely sips fuel, is almost soundless at idle and will work on this design very well.  But here I was confronted with a problem. With many small sailboats, if we make a centerline rudder and hang the outboard on some sort of scissoring bracket to one side of the stern, when sailing on the tack where the outboard is to the lee side, you will find the end of the lower unit of the outboard dragging in the water.  There might be a couple of solutions to this problem, we could move the outboard closer to the centerline, but if we are not really careful then there is a really good chance that sooner or later you will hit the prop with the rudder while doing some short maneuvering in a docking or mooring situation.  If you place the engine further away from the rudder you’ve exaggerated the problem of the drag of the lower unit and prop of the outboard (and I hate dragging something like that when trying to sail).  So my solution for the “Litl Coot” was to place the motor on the centerline of the transom, and by using a long shaft outboard we will be able to keep the lower unit from dragging on the lee side tack (as there is no lee side to a centerline mounted engine) and both the motoring and the sailing will be without compromise.  Now with the engine on the centerline that meant in order to be able to steer her under sail, I needed to find a way to either mount a rudder off the centerline or an even better solution was to use twin rudders that have tillers that tie together into a common link arm. The additional benefit of the twin rudders allowed them to not extend into the water quite as deeply as if I had used just a single rudder and conforms rather nicely with our requirement of being able to sit level and upright in grounding situations without any necessity to lift the rudders up or have some sort of swing blades on them.  Once we joined the two tillers together into a single link arm then my next problem of how to allow an inside steering station to be rigged was easily assisted by having one common link with simple shackles made up to fixed lines (when desiring the inside steering station) and led through turning blocks to a fore and aft pivoting vertical tiller that will be fixed in the pilothouse on the starboard side. If I desire to steer from this inside station, I can sit in a comfortable seat on the starboard side facing forward and steer her by either pushing or pulling on the tiller. There is enough drag in this type of steering system to keep the helm steady for short periods of time if I needed to have her self steering while fixing a spot of tea or perhaps making a snack.

One of the main ideas with this design is that all functions could be done while sailing, or motoring, solo. There is room to take a buddy along but you don’t necessarily have to, in fact there might be a lot of days when just my dog “Bella” might be the perfect crew for an adventure on the “Litl Coot”.  So all the halyards, topping lifts, etc. are lead aft to the sides of the pilothouse. With her little mizzen sail set up and left rigged most of the time either under sail or under power, she will have the wonderful capability to have a balanced helm under different wind and tacking conditions, and the mizzen would help to keep her steady on a mooring, or at anchor when holed up for a rest.

For easy and quick set up when launching from trailer I designed a tabernacle hinged Mainmast setting a rig that I would call a Cat Yawl (although under some definitions this might also be described as a Cat Ketch, the mizzen being stepped ahead of the rudders) configuration.  This style of rig keeps the sail area where it is needed for balance under sail and is a very simple to use, with literally no re-sheeting necessary as one tacks from board to board.  With the process of rigging the Mainmast simply being a matter of rotating up the mast in its tabernacle, set up the forestay on the bail above the Stainless Steel anchor roller up on the bow, and insert a pin into the bottom of the tabernacle and you are ready to launch.  Keeping the mast up in the eyes of the boat also allowed me to have a top hinged window on the front of the pilothouse for sailing or motoring on warm days.  This allows lots of wind in the face but reduces the chance of getting too much sun on my already overly exposed face, if I choose to be inside in the shade of the pilothouse.

So we now have a boat that can sit on a trailer, fit in a normal sized garage for berthage when we aren’t using her, an inside and outside steering arrangement, a couple of berths for doing some simple cruise/camping, and one that will sail or motor at a fairly efficient level whether the wind is blowing or not.  And did I add that she is towable behind most of the small-to-mid sized SUVss or Pickups? She also is a boat that will allow me to explore the really shallow and fringe cruising areas that more conventional sailboats with their deep keels can’t even think about sailing in.  I can sail her either on my own or with crew, but again all systems and setup can be done on my own if that is the way I choose to use her.  In final expression I have found the “Litl Coot” to be absolutely beguiling during her design stages and my armchair cruises have been wonderful, built around her platform.  My best guess is that her real life adventures might be just as good or better, and that adds a lot of spice to my life, just the ticket for a modern, busy world!

Amateur plans are $195 and consist of 16 drawings printed on 24X36 inch paper and a simple building booklet. You can either buy printed sets of plans directly from us or buy a download version and print on your own. We are now producing basic hull kits for her or we could build you the whole boat if you would like, and very soon I look forward to seeing many of these little Cat Yawls on the water. — Sam Devlin

28 foot full keel sailboat

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This maximum-size trailer sailer shows the compromises needed to haul a boat on the road.

Lancer Yachts was an offshoot of the remarkably complex and inbred family tree known as California boatbuilding. Lancer principals Dick Valdes and Maury Threinen founded Columbia Yachts back in the late 1950s, built boats under contract for Islander, sold Columbia to Whittaker, and got back into the sailboat business in 1974 by forming Lancer Yachts.

Lancer 28

The names that passed through this Columbia connection read like a who’s who of fiberglass boatbuilding. Designer Bruce King was a draftsman for Columbia. Ericson founder Kurt Densmore was a Columbia plant manager, and Frank Butler—owner of Catalina Yachts, probably the biggest sailboat builder in the country—ran the Coronado division of Columbia.

It’s no wonder that many California-built boats from the 1970s bear a strong family resemblance: they’re practically first cousins.

Lancer Yachts built a rather astonishing variety of boats before going out of business in 1986. None of the Lancers can be considered a classic. Rather, the boats were a mirror of their times, and this constant change may have been what finally did in the company.

In 1983 alone, Lancer offered 13 different boats ranging in size from a 25′ trailer sailer to a 65′ motorsailer. The sheer variety of models reduces efficiency in production, and to stay competitive in price, you must shave profit margins closer and closer.

Perhaps the most interesting boats ever produced by Lancer were those in a series of high-performance motorsailers built in the mid-1980s. These boats ranged from the 25′ Powersailer up to the 65′ Motorsailer, and were characterized by huge engines relative to their displacements in an attempt to get both powerboat and sailboat performance out of the same hull. The Powersailer 27, for example, was designed for outboards of up to 200 hp. The 44′ high-performance motorsailer had engine options up to twin 200 hp turbocharged diesels.

The idea was to capture a crossover market which really wanted a powerboat, but felt that sailboats were the way to go due to real or imagined fuel shortages.

Needless to say, these boats had a somewhat limited appeal, and the return of cheap oil spelled their doom.

By comparison, the Lancer 28, built from 1977 to 1985, seems a rather tame and ordinary boat.

Part of the variety in the Lancer line stems from the use of a number of different designers. Most builders use a single designer or design team. Lancer was building designs by Bill Lee, C&C, Bruce Farr, and Shad Turner—all at the same time.

Turner designed both the 25 and 28, the smallest Lancers from 1977 to 1983. Both are shoal-draft fixed-keel trailerables. The 25 and 28 are attractive boats with short ends, flattish sheer, and Swan-type bubble deckhouses.

When the Lancer 28 entered production in 1977, trailer sailers were a hot item. And the more you could cram into a boat that could be towed behind your car, the better the consumer liked it.

Sailing Performance

In a lot of ways, the Lancer 28 is a good study in the compromises that are inherent in creating a relatively big boat that can be lugged around from place to place on a trailer. Sailing performance is one of those compromises.

Small boats get stability either from wide beam or deep, heavy keels. The Lancer 28 has neither.

To keep weight to a level that can be towed behind a car, trailerables such as the Lancer 28 tend to be lighter in weight and more lightly ballasted than boats of the same size designed to be kept in the water rather than taken home at the end of the day. The

Lancer 28’s 44% ballast/displacement ratio may sound high, but the actual amount of ballast—2200 pounds—is fairly low for a 28′ boat. By way of comparison, the Ranger 28, at about the same displacement, has 600 pounds more ballast.

It’s not just the weight of ballast that counts, it’s the location. Because of the Lancer 28’s shoal draft— less than 3’—the ballast cannot be located very far down. A fin keel 28-footer of the same displacement would draw 4′ or more, and have a correspondingly lower center of gravity.

What this means is that the Lancer 28 is tippy. Most owners in our survey consider the boat about average in stability, but in our experience, an “average” rating usually means a fairly tender boat.

The narrow 8′ beam doesn’t help stability, either. In many states 8′ is as wide as you can go without special trailering permits, so you find an awful lot of trailer sailers 8′ wide, no matter what their length.

The fixed keel of the Lancer 28 is a poor shape for windward performance. The keel is a hollow fiberglass box, with the cabin sole dropped down inside it. The keel is much wider than it should be for good performance, and its long, shallow shape does little as an efficient foil.

This is a boat that must be sailed upright. When the boat heels over, there is little to stop it from moving sideways. A centerboard would probably make a dramatic improvement in windward performance, but it was not an option.

Off the wind, performance is substantially better. Owners rate it average to above average in reaching and downwind performance.

Lancer 28

The boat was built with both fractional and masthead rigs, with the fractional rig stepped further forward. The fractional boat should be better balanced, and is faster.

The Lancer 28 is no speed demon, with an average PHRF rating of 258 for the masthead version. The fractional rig is about 10 seconds per mile faster. By way of comparison, the Hunter 27 rates about 216, the Ericson 27 about 220, the Ranger 28 about 186, the Catalina 27 about 204. Any of these boats will chew up and spit out the Lancer 28.

You don’t buy this boat for speed. It’s a noncompetitive daysailer and weekend trailer cruiser.

Most Lancers under 30′ were powered by outboards, although inboard engines were frequently options. An inboard engine in the Lancer 28 adds several hundred pounds of weight to a boat that is already near the upper limit for trailering.

While most Lancer 28s have outboards, a number of different inboard engine configurations and models were used over the course of production, including

Petter, Renault and Yanmar diesels; a 10 hp gas inboard; and an OMC saildrive.

If the boat is really to be trailered, an outboard engine is preferable. An outboard can be flushed with fresh water after every cruise in salt water. The outboard and its fuel tank will come in at less than half the weight of any of the inboards. When the time comes to replace the engine, an outboard will cost about half what an inboard will cost, and you don’t have to worry about whether or not it will fit in the boat.

The outboard well in the stern of the Lancer 28 is pretty good. The engine stays in the water even in rough conditions, and the weight isn’t can’tilevered out over the stern to add to pitching moment. We’d be wary of purchasing a boat with a saildrive that has been used in salt water. A lot of owners are less than faithful about flushing out saildrives after each use, yet the innards are as vulnerable to corrosion as an outboard.

Likewise, parts for small diesel inboards are disproportionately expensive, and may be hard to find for any of the engines used in the boat except the Yanmar.

The inboard engine is tucked in a box under the companionway ladder, and owners rate the installation about average for accessibility.

A 10-horse outboard will move this boat along just fine, even in a chop. Take good care of it—flushing with fresh water after use in salt water—and an outboard will easily last for seven or eight years. Neglect it, and your first season may be its last.

Construction

To keep weight down for trailering, construction of the Lancer 28 is fairly light. To keep price down, finish detail is not particularly refined.

In its description of their fleet, Lancer described the 28 as bringing “real ocean-going capability to trailer boating.” We think you’d have to use a lot of imagination to consider this a boat for serious sailing in the ocean: the design and construction are those of a coastal cruiser and daysailer.

With the masthead rig, a compression column in the middle of the main cabin is required for under-deck support; the fractional rig utilizes the forward bulkhead.

Check for compression and stress cracks around either mast step.

The companionway dropboards are light plywood, and the companionway opening has so much taper that the boards can be removed by lifting them only a few inches. This may be convenient and give a lot of ventilation below, but it also means that the dropboards could fall out in a severe knockdown. The sliding companionway hatch is also wide, and not well sealed against boarding waves.

Several owners in our survey comment that the mast tabernacle is not strong enough, and that there is a lot of friction in the system when raising and lowering the mast.

The rig is quite tall—about 31′ above the top of the cabin with the masthead rig, and the fractional rig is taller still—so a lot of care is required in stepping and un-stepping the mast. That’s one trade-off with a maximum-size trailerable boat: you’re getting at the limit for easy rigging and unrigging without a fairly sophisticated tabernacle, which the boat doesn’t have.

Owner complaints about structural flaws include leaking hull-to-deck joints and leaking ports. Finding deck leaks is complicated by the vinyl headliner. Water may find its way along a circuitous route before it deposits itself on your head, and leaks may be next to impossible to trace. Look carefully for signs of drips and discoloration on the vinyl, particularly around every joint in the liner.

In general, there are numerous reports of deck leaks in our surveys. This is fairly common in relatively inexpensive mass-produced boats such as the Lancer 28, but it is a problem that can make your life miserable when cruising.

Lancer 28

Although bottom blistering is usually less of a problem with trailerable boats than with boats kept in the water, several owners report blistering or other types of gelcoat flaws, such as crazing or stress cracks.

The Lancer 28 was designed in a time when it was fashionable to jam the maximum number of berths in the shortest possible overall boat length. It is true that there are six berths in the original version of this boat. It is also true that headroom at the aft end of the main cabin is 6′ 2″. However, just as the rooms in tract houses look a lot smaller in the flesh than they look in those wonderful wide-angle architectural photographs, the reality of the interior of the Lancer 28 is a little different from the promise.

Main cabin headroom comes from dropping the cabin sole 1′ into the keel stub. What this means is that you have a very long, narrow section of cabin sole over which there is reasonable headroom. But the effect is a little strange: you feel like you’re standing in a hole.

Frankly, this dropped cabin sole is a pretty mediocre idea. In the galley, where you could use the headroom, it’s not even easy to turn around because the dropped sole is so narrow. You’d be better off sitting on a little folding stool.

Without the dropped sole, headroom would be 5’2″ or so. You would have trouble selling that amount of headroom in a 28-footer, even a trailerable boat.

Forward, there is a narrow double berth with a storage locker below. In 1979, the forepeak berth was replaced in the Mark V version with a sail storage area. There is no provision for ventilation in this space. The bubble-type deckhouse fairs into the foredeck over the forward cabin, so there is reasonable sitting headroom over the berth. Actually, “cabin” is a misnomer: it is really just a berth, separated from the head by a bulkhead.

Just aft of the forward berth, a narrow head compartment spans the width of the boat. It gives you as much privacy as you can get in a trailer boat—which isn’t that much—and has a hatch overhead for ventilation. Some of these boats are equipped with self-contained toilets, while others have more conventional overboard-discharge toilets. Your sailing waters will dictate which arrangement you need.

There are two berths in the main cabin, On the port side is a conventional settee berth. On the starboard side, the dinette table drops to form a fairly wide berth, but don’t let anyone try to tell you it’s a double.

Dinettes don’t really work on narrow boats. You feel like you’re sitting in a narrow booth at the corner drugstore, which is fine if you happen to be a teenager—but not if you’re an adult. In this case, it’s a really tight squeeze for four people to fit into the dinette. On the other hand, it’s great seating for two.

Over the years, Lancer has actually done some pretty inventive things with interiors. Their boats had a California/European crossbred look that was always the talk of boatshow crowds, with wild colors and fabrics.

But the interior of the Lancer 28 is basically Neo-Padded Cell. Almost every surface is covered with either carpeting, upholstery, or padded vinyl.

Lancer isn’t the only builder guilty of this. Early Swans such as the Swan 43 were similarly padded.

It may seem like a good idea—if you get thrown against it you won’t get hurt—but we’ve never cared for the look of padding. Owning a boat is precariously close to insanity in any case: reminders of that when belowdecks are not particularly welcome.

The galley occupies both sides of the aft end of the main cabin, with a two-burner stove and lockers to port, and a sink, icebox and lockers to starboard. It’s quite workable.

Aft, there are quarterberths under both sides of the cockpit. They are very narrow at the foot. Your head and shoulders, however, are not stuffed under the cockpit, so the berths are not claustrophobic, although they are likely to be pretty hot in warm weather.

It’s not realistic to expect a lot of interior room in a hull as narrow as the Lancer 28. But the boat has a relatively long waterline, and the low-profile cabin trunk is also quite long, increasing the feeling of space.

Conclusions

The Lancer 28 is a maximum-size trailerable boat. The weight of about 5000 pounds will require a serious pulling vehicle if anything other than a once yearly trip to and from the launching ramp is planned.

Despite the six berths in the boat, we wouldn’t recommend it for four adults for anything longer than a weekend. For a young family with several children, the Lancer 28 could be seen as a floating camper.

The performance compromises that are a result of the shoal keel, high center of gravity and narrow beam have to be weighed against the fact that you can put the boat behind a big car or truck and take off for cruising areas that you might otherwise never reach with a 28′ boat.

If you really aren’t going to trailer the boat, there are a lot of other boats around 28′ long that will give you better performance and better accommodations. The extra foot or so of beam and ton of displacement that you would get in most non-trailerable 28-footers translates into a lot more usable volume, and in most cases, better performance. At the same time, a Lancer 28 costs less than most 28-footers.

Keeping a boat in a marina or on a mooring can be an expensive proposition. You can greatly reduce your sailing costs by owning a trailerable boat. The problem is that a trailerable as big as the Lancer 28 is a bit of a handful to tow, launch, and rig. You’re not going to hitch it up to the family station wagon after a day at the office and launch it for an evening cruise.

If you need a trailerable boat that can accommodate two adults and several children for relatively short-term cruising, the Lancer 28 makes sense. But don’t expect to get six berths, “full headroom,” shoal draft, and trailerability in a 28′ boat without some fairly substantial compromises.

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Thanks for the information on the Lancer28.My wife and me own a Lancer 28 we took it on a 6 day sail in puget sound and she did just fine had no problems.Handle great than our 23 ft American the 28 would turn on dime no problem on sailing her.

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Full Keel Blue Water Sailboats Boats for sale

50' Blue Water Cruiser Skookum Center Cockpit Sloop 1972, full keel

50' Blue Water Cruiser Skookum Center Cockpit Sloop 1972, full keel

Waianae, Hawaii

Make Skookum Marine

Model 47 Center Cockpit Sloop

Category Cruiser Motorcycles

Length 50.0

Posted Over 1 Month

You want this, she will take you anywhere and accommodate your wildest dreams. Once in a lifetime opportunity to own one of the finest cruising sailboats built for person looking to spend less upfront and fix her up to your own purpose. Vessel as is can make major crossing to Fiji or West Coast, currently sailing inter-island and at anchor in Hawaii. Great sailing boat, simple sail plan for ease of sailing. Vessel tracks well, very forgiving to inexperienced or rough water action. Great live aboard, large flush deck, center cockpit, raised aft cabin. 6'3" headroom average throughout. Midship main salon with sofa/double bed, galley. Forward unfinished but framed in double bed cabin, wash basin, storage area. Built in USA no inferior metals, craftsmanship or materials used as was common to similar Asian built vessels. This is a live to see another day serious blue water cruiser not a cookie cutter cheap build. Never had teak decks so deck is not compromised - has retained original strength, no hidden rot or leaks. Hull is 3/4" solid fiber reinforced plastic (FRP) that thickens at waterline and below to encapsulated full keel. Rare. Vessel requires TLC, cleaning & some project cosmetic work. Main engine not starting needs new starter, overhaul recommended. It is a boat for someone who has money to invest or who's hobbies include being handy. Price reflects that and need to sell NOW. Serious inquiries only. Reasonable offers considered. Motivated Seller for empowered motivated Buyer. Open to trade into smaller 31-38' vessel with cash. Vessel is sold as is where is, free clear title through USCG Certificate of Documentation Sale/Transfer of Vessel notary and Bill of Sale. Skookum Center Cockpit Masthead Sloop 1972, full keel renowned Ed Monk design built by Skookum Marine Inc., Port Townsend, WA. Do research the value & uniqueness of full keel bulletproof hull era, top end designers & builders. Online you can find similar 47-53' Skookum vessels in better condition priced up to $549,000. There are several in the $80,000 range with the original old interior and engine that need to be redone, rebuilt or replaced. If you look on Yacht World, Sailboat listings, etc. you will find Skookum 47' to 53' vessels. There is a 47' Custom Built Cutter Skookum for $549,000. Owners took the same 1970's hull to a boat builder for refit had everything inside topside redone. It's much more cost effective and a seaworthy vessel than new. S/V Aulani Aloha USCG Doc. # 1231261 with original build cert. - operational endorsements: Recreation, Registry for foreign waters, Coastwise for commercial passengers/cargo & fishery. Foreign built or State registered do not enjoy such liberties. LOA: 50', LOD 48', LWL: 38' Hull Speed: 8.5 knots Beam: 13' 6" Draft: 6' 6" Ballast: 11,500lbs; Displacement: 32,000 lb Internal volume: 1 ton equals 100 cubic feet - GT 29, NrT 26 Compare to other vessels. Hydraulic Windlass deck-mounted drum, pump clutch (new 2010); Simpson Lawrence Tiger 555 (2011 $1500) Anchor Rode - 66lb Bruce claw, 45lb Danforth, 44lb Delta; Chain 150' & 90' 3/8" G3/G4; 350' line Wagner hydraulic Ram, helm pump A2-W (new 2009) 44" Edson Destroyer Wheel (new 2009) Autopilot Hydraulic Comnav 1500/1510 with Fluxgate compass (new 2004 $2000) HRP100 Accu Steer Reverse Pumpset (new 2011 $2000) Large inboard hung spade rudder attached to keel, system serviced (2011), new cutlass (2011) 5 Batteries/2 banks - 350 amps, 220 amps (new 2014) 10 Amp Marine Battery Charger (new 2013) 2 Solar panels 80 (new 2011) & 100 watt (new 2013), controllers (new 2013), 200 Watt Invertors, DC/AC Circuit Break Panel Distribution, 3 Battery Selector Switches (new 2011), 75% of wiring (new 2011) all boat cable, marine grade Yanmar 2GMFL 5 kW diesel generator ($10,000 new), low hours, new 55 amp charger (2013) 1982 Ford Lehman 80 hp diesel main engine (rebuilt 2001). Gear Reduction 2:1. Fuel Tank 85 gallons, Dual Racor filters, booster fuel pump, SS Day Tank 10 gallons. Bronze Stuffing Box & Bearings (serviced 2011). Bronze thru hull ball valves (new 2011) 3 blade bronze propeller 22 X 15 LH, polished/balanced (2011); 1.5" SS Shaft Rule 12 VDC Bilge Pumps - 3500 gph (new 2011), 1100 gph (new 2014) 3 Fresh Water Tanks capacity 305 gallons; 12 VDC PUMP pressurized (new 2014); 10 gallon Hot water tank/heater 115 VAC Toyotami OM 22 (22,000 BTU) oil-diesel heater electronic ignition (new 2007), clean efficient no diesel smell. 3 Fire extinguishers, Flares, Eprib, Horseshoe life ring, 12PFDs, Ships bell, barometer Galley stove propane 3 burner & 20lb aluminum tank, Microwave Oven, SS Sink, 12vDC Igloo Ice Chest Jabsco Marine toilet (new 2013), 30 gallon holding tank. Aluminum mast, boom, spars by Yacht Riggers (new 2002). SS Rigging 3/8" and 5/16" (new 2002), (reconditioned 2008, 2011) chain plates all above deck easy to inspect - very good condition, insulated backstay for SSB-HF radio, spinnaker/whisker pole Winches - 2x Barient #28 (dual), 1x #22 and 2x #20 (cleaned serviced 2015) Sails: Dacron main with 6 battens (serviced by SLO Sail & Canvas 2011) fair condition & 130% dacron Genoa with sail cover UV (new 2010) good condition, Profurl headstay system. 4" Gemini & 3" Tell Tale Compasses JRC LCD Radar 1500 MK II (new 2010 $2000) Furuno Echo Sounder FCV 620, bronze transducer (new 2011 $1500) WM VHF 600, new antennae (2015) Extensive haul out 2011 - Barrier paint 2 coats, 3 coats ablative antifouling, 2 coats 2 part marine exposy hull & decks. Edson cast aluminum tender davits, SS swim ladder and boarding rails Walkthrough Layout: Entry from cockpit to aft cabin 14' long by beam with queen size bed, enclosed head to port and vanity/nav area stbd. 7' long passageway forward with storage clothes hanging area to stbd can be converted to berth. Main engine and gen set center under cockpit easy access. Main Salon midship 10' by 13', galley 9'x5' port side opposite machinery compartment into main salon. Forward space 14' to chain/rope locker. Stairwell entry exit to flush deck port side. Starboard side has thru hull fittings for second head original with construction. There is a framed in double bed to starboard with port side shelving for storage. Large Cockpit area 8' by 7' designed so one can easily add a pilothouse. Pictures of haul out, prop/stern/rudder are from several years past. Interior, deck, sailing and at anchor or mooring pics 2015-2016. See videos at my you tube channel Ocean Maverick for footage of history, underway, etc. Rare original insulation core high quality dense laid up inside of hull 1 1/14" with 1/8" FRP barrier inside to glass in any type of interior and use. Best type for heating cooling temperature control inside and noise reduction. Deck is 1 1/2" 2 layers solid and cored FRP laminates. I've lived on her last five years dockside, underway, on the hard, at anchor and sailing cruising often solo across 20,000 miles of ocean from Seattle down West Coast thru Hawaii into South Pacific & back to Hawaii. I had a two phase plan to refit, fix her up allowing me to enjoy cruising the Pacific Ocean and isles. I completed phase one but developed a condition two years past that now forces me to sell. An alternative to paying $150,000 for a similar in excellent condition or $80,000 with a running old engine worn and soon to fail or mandates a rebuild. Is to buy cheap get a great hull, good rigging & sail gear, anchoring system, versatile spacious interior to be used as is & continue remodeling or redo to your own liking while enjoying life aboard and/or sailing. Or an alternative housing scenario. That alternative is this. The 2010 survey put the boat at a $400,000 replacement cost, a $115,000 - $140,000 refit complete value and $85,000 market value. The prior owner needed a survey for bank loan and insurance. 2010 survey available upon request plus 2012 addendum.

The Nicest 42’ Aft-Cabin Cruising/Chartering Sailboats - Located in Costa Rica

The Nicest 42’ Aft-Cabin Cruising/Chartering Sailboats - Located in Costa Rica

Make Gulfstream

Model Aft Cabin

Length 42.0

The following is from when we had purchased her just two years ago. She is Literally, one of the Nicest 42’ Aft-Cabin GulfStream Blue Water Sailboats Ever Built and in Absolutely Excellent Condition ‘Beautiful & Spacious’, Loaded with Extras including ‘Central-Air Conditioning’ and Costa Rican Flagged. A Perfect Business Opportunity She’s Completely Renovated and Fully Equipped for Live Aboard, Tourist Business or for Comfortable and Safe Extended Cruising She is ‘Beautiful & Spacious’ Inside and Out including ‘Central-Air’ Costa Rican Flagged and offers a Perfect Business Opportunity New Exotic Wood Interior including over $75,000 in Upgrades and Electronics Sailing capabilities: Offshore Cruising and without limitations. This GulfStream-42 is in Excellent ‘Ready to Go’ Condition. She only needs someone to Appreciate and Enjoy Sailing with her. Please see attached pictures for details. She is Flagged and located in Costa Rica, Certified and All Taxed are Up to Date. We purchased this Beautiful Sailboat last year from a local sailor with 20-years of extensive offshore sailing experience but since we have had little time to enjoy her, we have decided to let her go to someone who would appreciate her as much as we have and has more time to enjoy a Lifetime of Wonderful Memories. BOAT DESCRIPTION: COMPLETELY UPGRADED AND FULLY EQUIPPED GulfStream-42 'Center-Cockpit' in Tip-Top Condition. Central Air-Conditioning, 6'8" Head Room with 2 private cabins, Two Full Bathrooms with Private Showers. Walk-through Aft Master Suite. Costa Rica Registered and Flagged. Title transferable through a Costa Rica Corporation. Perfect Income for Tourism. Boat is in overall excellent condition and well prepared for extended blue-water or costal excursions. Electricity is provided by both Shore Power, Solar and her onboard "4.5kw Northern Lights" generator. Interior/Cabin: Central Air-Conditioning provided throughout with a Comfortable and very roomy 'Walkthrough' Aft Cabin Stateroom with private head and shower, Forward V-birth with Private Head and Shower with lots of head room. Enjoy watching Movies or local Television Channels from her ‘Sharp 26" 720p HD LCD Television’. She sleeps 6 with lots of storage, Universal Gas Stove/Oven, fridge/freezer, very Spacious Cockpit, Newly Painted Bottom and Deck. General remarks: All New Navigation Electronics including the INTERPHASE (1,200') Forward Looking Sonar, Garmin 5208 8.4" 'Touch Screen' GPS, Garmin 18" HD Radar. She is an Excellent Sailor, Very Comfortable, Roomy, Extremely Strong and Well Built, Well Kept boat. Perfect for Chartering, Single Handling or as a Spacious Family Boat. Sails: 1992 and in very good condition. DETAILED SPECIFICATIONS Description GulfStream built many designs but this one's tough to beat as an outstanding cruising design. Her cutaway full keel and skeg-hung rudder offers uncompromising performance between comfort and stability. She's ready to store your provisions aboard, cast off her lines and make way for an Experience of a Lifetime. Dimensions LOA: 42/00 ft/in LWL: 33/00 ft/in Beam: 12/00 ft/in Maximum Draft: 4/10 ft/in Displacement: 22000 lbs Bridge Clearance: 56/00 ft/in Galley REFRIGERATION/FREEZER: Adler Barbour 2.8A@12vDC STOVE: Universal SS three-burner propane stove with oven (LPG) with GAS ALARM SINK: Single SS WATER SYSTEM: Pressure SEAWATER WASHDOWN WATERMAKER: New and Never Activated Powersurvivor-35 Accommodations A very spacious, cruise-friendly, Live Aboard interior lay-out! Provides Central Air-Conditioning throughout. The Aft Master Stateroom has a full-width KING-SIZE BED with Private head/shower. The Forward Stateroom has a roomy v-berth and storage in lockers, drawers and bins. The guest head is to port. The salon features a H-shaped dinette and a spacious L-shaped galley to port and an adjacent settee to starboard. The navigation stations is center and to starboard. Engine ENGINE: 50Hp Perkins-4107 diesel, completely overhauled 1998 HOURS: 150 hours since rebuild. New April, 2012 Heat Exchanger SPEED: Cruising Speed: 6mph / Maximum Speed: 8mph Electronics CHARTPLOTTER: New Garmin 5208/GSD22 FISH FINDER: Sounder/Fish-Finder BlueChart G2 2012 Garmin Vision VSA002R South America West Coast BlueChart G2 2012 Garmin Vision VUS031R Southwest Caribbean RADAR DOME: Garmin GMR 18 HD 18" Radar Dome DEPTH/TEMP: Garmin B60-12, 12 Degree Tilted Element Transducer VHF: Icom IC-M80 & Garmin VHF 200 Marine Radio HANDHELD Uniden MHS75 New Submersible Two-Way VHF Radio SONAR: 1,200' INTERPHASE COLOR TWINSCOPE FWD LOOKING SONAR STEREO: Dual MXD50 AM/FM/CD Marine Receiver AM/FM/CD WIND SPEED & DIRECTION: Horizon Standard AUTO PILOT: Alpha Marine Spectra "Top of the Line AP" KNOT METER/LOG: Horizon Standard COMPASS: Danforth Constellation (at helm) Electrical ELECTRICAL SYSTEM: 12vDC/120vAC AIR CONDITIONER: Mermaid 16,000btu Air Conditioner GENERATOR: 2008 Northern Lights Generator (710 hrs) BATTERIES: 3-marine deep cycle House Batteries - 2-Starter Batteries - Both New May, 2012) AMP HOURS: 100Ah each BATTERY PARALLEL SWITCH: (2) Yes BATTERY MONITOR: Sterling ProReg D Marine 12/24 Volt Advanced Regulator DOCKSIDE CABLE: 50' 30-amp INVERTER: Power Bright 1,500w (New May, 2012) INTERIOR LIGHTING: 12vDC ALTERNATOR: Powerline Series 25 - 120amp (+ Control) BATTERY CHARGER: Progressive Dynamics 40 AMP Marine Charger PD2140 OTHER: 1-250W Mono-Crystalline Solar Panel Mechanical Equipment PROPELLER: Three-blade bronze BILGE PUMPS: New April, 2012 (1) New Rule 3000 automatic RAW WATER SEA STRAINERS: New April, 2012 Bronze FIRE EXTINGUISHING: Manual dry chemical FUEL FILTERS: (1) Racor STEERING: Wheel, cable to quadrant FUEL SHUT OFFS: Diesel, LPG FRESH WATER COOLING: Yes ENGINE ROOM HEAT EXTRACTOR TRANSMISSION: Hydraulic Borgwarner MASTER TOILET: Thetford Tecma 'Silence Plus' Electric Toilet - (New) GUEST TOILET: Jabsco 'Manual' Toilet - Guest Bathroom (New) HOLDING TANK: None WIND VANE SELFSTEERING: None FIRE SAFE: (New) Sails & Rigging SAILS: 2-Main (extra as backup); 1-Genoa (Roller Furling); Spinnaker ROLLER FURLING: Hood 808-SL (New) TOTAL SAIL AREA: 691 sq. ft. MAST: Aluminum, keel-stepped STANDING RIGGING: SS wire (New) SPINNAKER POLE: (1) WINCHES: (2) Barlow-16 at the mast with Barlow-2 wire main halyard winch. Lewmar 48 2-speed and a single Barlow-16 winch. Deck & Ground Tackle ANCHORS: 45lb. Bruce; 45# CQR, 40lb Grapnel stern anchor TOE RAILS: FG LADDER: Folding SS and Plastic swim BOW PULPIT: SS ANCHOR WINDLESS: 'MAXWELL' (12vDC) ANCHOR TACKLE: Two Forward Compartments. Bay-1: 250' Grade-40 High Test Genuine ACCO Brand Windless Anchor Chain Bay-2: 90' Grade-40 HT ACCO Chain with 300' of 1" Rode DINGHY & MOTOR: 2009 9.5 Caribe-C9 10' Hard Bottom Inflatable with Evenrude 15-h.p. Outboard. Both serviced April, 2012 ANCHOR DAVIT/ROLLER: Double SS LIGHTS: Deck-mount Navigatin, Masthead Tricolor, Spreader COVERS & CURTAINS: Custom aluminum Bimini with full enclosure, cockpit and aft deck awnings LIFELINES & STANCHIONS: Double SS wire on SS stanchions DECK MATERIAL: FRP with integral nonskid BOARDING GATES: P&S Safety Equipment LifeSling Overboard Rescue System 7-Adult & 2-Children Life jackets Exclusions Owners' personal effects She's located in Costa Rica and Import as well as all other Taxes are Fully-Paid and Up-to-Date. FYI: Import Taxes in Costa Rica for Sailboats are 65% of their Book Value. We've Invested over $125,000 since owning her however,she could be yours today for only $109,000 Reasonable Offers Considered.

1981 Island Trader Center Cockpit Ketch

1981 Island Trader Center Cockpit Ketch

Miami, Florida

Make Island Trader

Model Center Cockpit Ketch

Category Sailboats

1981 Island Trader Center Cockpit Ketch Big Price Reduction!  Don't miss this great buy on a classic sailing yacht..   A William Garden design. Arete is a heavily built blue water yacht that features striking good looks and hard to find old world teak woodwork.    Solidly crafted with a full no nonsense keel she is designed to be sailed on any of the 7 seas.  Below decks you will find a comfortable layout along with a galley redesigned by her knowledgeable owners.  Two staterooms each with private head / shower access,  a forward  facing navigation station and abundant storage all combine to make this boat an excellent choice for cruising.

1985 Bluewater Ingrid

1985 Bluewater Ingrid

Muskegon, Michigan

Make Bluewater

Model Ingrid

1985 Bluewater Ingrid The Ingrid 38 from the pen of William Atkin is a heavy displacement blue water cutter derived from Colin Archer's famous double ender designed North Sea pilot boats, which in turn were inspired by Viking boats renowned for their heavy weather characteristics. Perhaps Atkin sums it up best by saying it's "the kind of boat that behaves herself in rough water and can be depended upon to sail herself". (To that part we do hear frequent mentions of the superb one-finger-on-tiller tracking and a comfortable ride.) With her old world style, Josette's a good looking boat with a sheer line reminiscent of Crealock's famous Westsail 32. Her seaworthiness is there to see in her full keel, heavy displacement and overbuilt construction. Her hull is heavily hand laid in fiberglass. There's robust outboard chain plates and an outboard rudder protected by extra fiberglass and a large bronze shoe casting should she scrub the bottom. Atkin's main rework on the Ingrid 38 from Archer's original design was finer entry on the bow which 'cushions' her landing off the waves and even may increase speed slightly. Below the waterline she has a long full keel with deep v-sections forward keeping her stable in the rough. The ballast is encapsulated and is distributed from bow to stern, to keep the weight as low as possible. Rounding this off, there's plenty of flotation designed in her ends, fore and aft which helps keep her dry. The trade off of heavy displacement and ultimate stability is usually in speed so the Ingrid 38 is not considered fast. By the numbers, her hull speed works out at 7.2 knots but she'll more often manage a consistent 6 knots while cruising. Surprisingly she's known to sail pretty well in light airs, as owners report she'll do half the wind speed in up to 8 knots of wind. However, she's a boat that comes into her own in heavier seas. The cutter rig gives plenty of options on all points of sail and she's an easy boat to single-hand. Josette is her original name and she has spent most all of her life in fresh water. She only spent one year in salt water in 1985, her original launch year. This is a one-owner vessel. The hull was built in 1974 by Bluewater Yachts in Washington state and it is reported that these are the same builders that build the Nordic Tugs. The interior cabin sides (ceiling) were finished in planking by the original owner. The hull is foam insulated to keep you cool when it is hot outside and warm when it is cold outside. The galley area is a great work space for any type of cooking. The mast is anodized aluminum construction by MetalMast Marine, with internal halyards. The hull is solid fiberglass construction and does have some gel coat surface blisters above the waterline, but they do not appear to be structural. She recently had the following engine work accomplished: new head gasket, two new exhaust valves, injector service,

1981 ISLAND TRADER Center Cockpit Ketch

1981 ISLAND TRADER Center Cockpit Ketch

1981 Marine Trading International Center Cockpit Ketch A true classic.  Arete is a heavily built blue water yacht that features striking good looks and hard to find old world teak woodwork.    Solidly crafted with a full no nonsense keel she is designed to be sailed on any of the 7 seas.  Below decks you will find a comfortable layout along with a galley redesigned by her knowledgeable owners.  Two staterooms each with private head / shower access,  a forward  facing navigation station and abundant storage all combine to make this boat an excellent choice for cruising.  Full Exterior Hull Detailing May , 2015!

1985 Bluewater Ingrid

1985 Bluewater Ingrid The Ingrid 38 from the pen of William Atkin is a heavy displacement blue water cutter derived from Colin Archer's famous double ender designed North Sea pilot boats, which in turn were inspired by Viking boats renowned for their heavy weather characteristics. Perhaps Atkin sums it up best by saying it's "the kind of boat that behaves herself in rough water and can be depended upon to sail herself". (To that part we do hear frequent mentions of the superb one-finger-on-tiller tracking and a comfortable ride.) With her old world style, Josette's a good looking boat with a sheer line reminiscent of Crealock's famous Westsail 32. Her seaworthiness is there to see in her full keel, heavy displacement and overbuilt construction. Her hull is heavily hand laid in fiberglass. There's robust outboard chain plates and an outboard rudder protected by extra fiberglass and a large bronze shoe casting should she scrub the bottom. Atkin's main rework on the Ingrid 38 from Archer's original design was finer entry on the bow which "cushions" her landing off the waves and even may increase speed slightly. Below the waterline she has a long full keel with deep v-sections forward keeping her stable in the rough. The ballast is encapsulated and is distributed from bow to stern, to keep the weight as low as possible. Rounding this off, there's plenty of flotation designed in her ends, fore and aft which helps keep her dry. The trade off of heavy displacement and ultimate stability is usually in speed so the Ingrid 38 is not considered fast. By the numbers, her hull speed works out at 7.2 knots but she'll more often manage a consistent 6 knots while cruising. Surprisingly she's known to sail pretty well in light airs, as owners report she'll do half the wind speed in up to 8 knots of wind. However, she's a boat that comes into her own in heavier seas. The cutter rig gives plenty of options on all points of sail and she's an easy boat to single-hand. Josette is her original name and she has spent most of her life in fresh water. She only spent one year in salt water in 1985, her original launch year. This is a one-owner vessel. The deck and hull was built in 1974 by Bluewater Yachts in Washington state and it is reported that these are the same builders that build the Nordic Tugs. The interior cabin sides (ceiling) were finished in planking by the original owner. The hull is foam insulated to keep you cool when it is hot outside and warm when it is cold outside. The galley area is a great work space for any type of cooking. The mast is anodized aluminum construction by MetalMast Marine, with internal halyards. The hull is solid fiberglass construction and does have some gel coat surface blisters above the waterline, but they do not appear to be structural. She recently had the following engine work accomplished: New head gasket, two new exhaust valves, injector service, new

1972 Islander Yachts 40' MS

1972 Islander Yachts 40' MS

San Diego, California

Make Islander Yachts

Model 40' MS

1972 Islander Yachts 40' MS DAUNTLESS was designed by Charlie Davis as a serious blue water cruiser / live aboard. Built in Costa Mesa California this hull/model became the Islander freeport 41'. It has the same heavy duty / thick hull as the Islander Freeport 41'. She is ketch rigged with a center cockpit, full keel, wineglass hull. The center cockpit separates the full beam master suite with ensuite head and shower from the galley/salon and huge V-birth with giant closet and ensuite head. Which provides great privacy. This Coast Guard documented vessel has heavy duty construction throughout (most notably the super thick hand laid fiberglass hull). Think SAFE & STURDY ! The Dauntless has all new wiring and pluming and is solid Burmese Teak throughout, the person I bought this boat from 3 years ago paid $50,000.00 for her and put over $60,000.00 into up-grades and maintenance. With a 13'2" Beam, thereis plenty of living space, great storage and a very generous engine room with excellent access. I have been living on Her for the last few years and love to day-sail her around North Coronado and back. I can single hand her and fly four sails at once, this is knowledge that I would be happy to share with you over a couple of lessons. I just purchased a new much larger yacht and need to find a new home for DAUNTLESS. This boat needs cosmetic work like paint, varnish, cushions, curtains, etc. The guy I bought the boat from put most of his money into making sure the mechanical and operating systems were in good order at all times. If you are not handy with a paint brush you might not want this boat. For the person with basic skills I have priced the boat to move quickly. This boat in better condition would sell for $60,000 to $90,000. For all of you StarWars fans out there this yacht is like the Millennium Falcon, she's not much to look at but she has it where it counts. I have sailed all over the place and entertained countless friends on whale watching trips and parties at A-1 Anchorage, Glorietta Bay and quite dinners with that special someone to huge raft-up parities and everything in-between. This boat is designed to be safe and comfortable. All systems have been installed for simplicity, safety and durability. The Dauntless can handle gail-force winds with a reefed main and storm jib, Dauntless will take more punishment than most crew members. She needs some TLC so this is a tremendous opportunity to own a seriously built blue water sailboat that can take you anywhere in the world you desire in safety and comfort. She makes a fabulous live-aboard (witch I have been doing for the last few years). I AM GOING TO MISS DAUNTLESS BUT HOPE TO LEAVE HER IN THE HANDS OF AN ENTHUSIASTIC NEW OWNER!

1986 Canyon Industries 43 Sloop - Refurbished 2014

1986 Canyon Industries 43 Sloop - Refurbished 2014

Pompano Beach, Florida

Make Canyon Industries

Model 43 Sloop - Refurbished 2014

1986 Canyon Industries 43 Sloop - Refurbished 2014 This 43' sloop was completely refurbished in 2014 and is a comfortable, solid blue water sailing yacht with classic layout. The spacious cockpit, the high freeboard and the tidy bow, along with the very generously sized deckhouse salon immediately convey comfort and safety. The steel hull with its moderate long keel and the rudder skeg make the Reliant an extremely seaworthy long distance sailboat. OWNER MOTIVATED! ***BRING ALL OFFERS*** Extended warranties and financing available. *** BROKERS WELCOME *** ... Click on "FULL SPECS" for pictures and details... TRADES ACCEPTED: up or down: including boats, yachts, cars, RVs, real estate... Worldwide Delivery and Financing Available!

1987 Irwin 38 Mk II

1987 Irwin 38 Mk II

Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Model 38 Mk II

1987 Irwin 38 Mk II An extremely comfortable and well-thought out cruiser, this Irwin 38 has been meticulously maintained and in 'turn-key' condition! The center cockpit model Irwins are always hard to find, and there are good reasons for this. The Irwin is known as a blue water boat with exceptional sailing capability. It is quicker than most full keel boats.The long-keel design ensures a comfortable ride at sea, and the center cockpit layout allows for an extremely roomy and useful live aboard arrangement for cruising. Soon more pictures and specs...

1976 Fuji Ketch

1976 Fuji Ketch

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Model Ketch

1976 Fuji Ketch Namaste is a traditional, cutter-rigged ketch with teak toe and taff-rails, wide side decks, and a large cockpit. She has a fiberglass hull with a full keel, bow thruster and burns one gallon of diesel per hour at a cruising speed of 7 mph. The interior and exterior teak are in great condition and the decks are nonslip paint. All new canvas, cushions and upholstery (blue) were added in 2015. This much loved fresh water yacht has just traveled 2,200 miles leaving Charlevoix, Michigan in June of 2015. She has been with the current owner since 2000 and during their ownership they have made many upgrades and have maintained her well.

2006 Southerly 135 Galley UP

2006 Southerly 135 Galley UP

Charleston, South Carolina

Make Southerly

Model 135 Galley UP

2006 Southerly 135 Galley UP The Southerly 135 is the flagship of the Southerly range - the ultimate long distance cruising yacht with variable draught ability to reach lagoons and harbours that other blue water yachts have to pass by. Combined with Northshore's wealth of experience in custom design, you can make this the yacht of your dreams. Any amount of equipment can be added to enhance your creature comforts and with the Rob Humphreys design pedigree the sailing performance is assured. The Swing Keel Southerly 135 brings together the best in design and construction to provide a unique blend of performance, comfort and versatility. The twin rudder arrangement (which operates within the canoe body draft of 2'9" with the keel raised), provides easy handling and excellent sail carrying capacity. The 'tall rig' option maximises sailing performance by taking full advantage of the deep 'keel lowered' draft of 9'9", giving precise directional stability and powerful windward performance. She is a true world class cruising yacht capable of fast blue water passage making. The Southerly 135 can be easily sailed by two people. Halyard and reefing lines are fed back through the coach roof and the self tailing winches are positioned within the cockpit for easy handling. The large centre cockpit with ample stowage, is designed with both safety and comfort in mind. New Dodger & Bimini just installed, YAHOO IS GOING TO THE YARD to have a brand new awgrip paint job on the hull. Same color blue. And a new bottom job. Accommodations: High quality teak joinery, concertina blinds, tan micro-suede upholstery and new (2012) cushions and mattresses throughout.  Master stateroom with centerline double berth and extensive cabinetry.  Sylvania 15” f Request Information Call Now

1986 Slocum Cutter

1986 Slocum Cutter

Clearwater, Florida

Make Slocum

Model Cutter

1986 Slocum Cutter Stormy Monday is a USCG Documented aft cockpit blue water cutter rigged cruiser.  Designed by Stan Huntingford and built by Formosa Boat Building in Taiwan she shares the hull and interior layout with the mid-80’s Passport 42.  Stormy Monday has a modified cruising keel (encapsulated) with a skeg hung rudder and is surprising fast with a nice motion when sailed hard.An amazing amount of recent upgrades include: New bimini, dodger, full enclosure, cockpit cushions (2013)Furuno chart plotter, wind, depth, radar, sirius weather (2013)Ham/SSB Icom IC-7200 and Pactor P4 modem (2013)Standard Horizon VHF w/AIS receiver integrated to plotter (2013)Balmar 80A Alternator (2013)Island Time Wifi Antenea (2013)New Standing Rigging, Full Battened Mainsail and Furling Jib (2011)New Furling Staysil (2014)Mast & Boom Refurbished (2011)New Central Air Conditioning and Heat (2014)New Spectra Watermaker Ventura 200T (2013)420watts Solar panels (2014)Non-Skid Epoxy Decks (replaced teak decks 2010)

1974 Standfast - PJ Standfast 36

1974 Standfast - PJ Standfast 36

Make Standfast - PJ

Model Standfast 36

1974 Standfast - PJ Standfast 36 New Listing of a very reputable boat designed by Frans Maas, a successful Dutch Naval Architect that gained fame in the 60's and 70's, designing sailboats under the RORC rule and IOR. To add to the pedigree, this boat was exclusively marketed  by Palmer Johnson.  This is a fiberglass, not aluminum sailing yacht. This boat has been owned by a local sailor and his wife and they have enjoyed cruising the southern New England waters for many years.   The boat is well maintained.    It has fiberglass decks, a fin keel and a skeg for rudder support.  Mast height above the water is 54'.  Hull is dark blue.  Boat is stored outdoors with a shrink wrap for the winter. These boats were built as Standfast Yachts.  Sold in the US also as Palmer Johnson 36's.        I - 48.9' (14.9m)    J - 15.4' (4.69m)    P - 43'  (13.11m)    E - 12'  (3.66m)            Sail Area/Disp:  15.30    Bal./Disp:  40.69%     Disp/Len.:  314.84 The Standfast 36 is a strong, offshore capable boat that was designed ahead of its time.   Still carrying more modern, graceful lines with a reverse transom.  Boat has a comfortable interior, newer, easily accessed Yanmar 27Hp diesel, sheltered cockpit, full galley, dinghy, outboard, liferaft and plenty of extra gear.     This blue-water capable boat is ready for another season, as soon as spring breaks.

1995 Oceanis 351

1995 Oceanis 351

Make Oceanis

1995 Oceanis 351 The Oceanis 351 was designed by Jean Berret and Phillipe Briand and produced by Beneteau between 1992 and 1997. Her sleek lines offer fast and efficient sailing and cruising, and her full-length galley and generous sized cabin are sure to prove popular amongst those seeking a genuine live-aboard cruiser for a longer trip.    The Oceanis 351 was designed for blue water cruising and sailing speed, and her bulb keel cuts an easy passage through the waves. Despite more conservative estimates from her manufacturer, she easily reaches an impressive 7 knots in good winds and 10 knots when cruising. She shares her hull with the Beneteau First 35.7, and her maximum waterline length and wide beam make for excellent stability in all weathers. In rough seas and strong winds, the Oceanis 351 has a good solid feel, whether under sail or in port.    The roller-furling main and genoa make for nice easy rigging and this is a yacht that makes for easy and safe light or short-handed sailing. The trademark balsa and fibreglass 'sandwich deck', also used on the Groupe Finot Oceanis, gives extra protection without weight. The downside of this light weight is that, when combined with a less powerful engine than some of the more recent Oceanis models, the Oceanis 351 performs less well in light winds.  Below decks, the Oceanis 351 truly comes into her own as yacht that was made for long distance blue water cruising. The salon and galley offer full headroom (1.9m) and there are two equal size aft cabins and a forward owner's cabin, all of which are generously sized. The galley runs the whole length of the large, U-shaped salon, and even the cockpit is big enough to seat the whole crew (with an icebox under the table to keep everyone happy too). Light and ventilation below decks is also excellent, thanks to the four portholes in the hull and deck. On the whole the accommodation is well set out for longer distance sailing, with plenty of nice touches such as the window above the sink for your resident galley slave to admire the view and the large hanging lockers in the cabins.    The Oceanis 351 makes an excellent choice if you are looking for a genuine ocean-going yacht that has enough accommodation and performance for a longer trip.

2002 Jeanneau 43DS

2002 Jeanneau 43DS

Annapolis, Maryland

Make Jeanneau

2002 Jeanneau 43DS “Calliope” is a 2 cabin, 2-head version of the popular Deck Salon line from Jeanneau, with v-berth and bunks in the forward cabin. She is in excellent condition and has a number of recent upgrades and beautiful flag blue Awlgrip hull which  make this fine yacht a perfect family cruiser - whether weekends on the bay, coastal cruising, or blue water adventures offshore. Upgrades and equipment include:Electric primary winches  Electric port cabin top winchFischer Panda 8KW generator (2007) WatchMate-WMX850 AISVETUS bow thrusterMax-Prop feathering propellerTaylormade airconDedicated battery for generator 4D bowthruster batteries (2) w/ dedicated Xantrex chargerGalvanic isolator (2014)Asymmetric spinnaker w/ snufferRaymarine RadarFull cockpit enclosure with screensPulpit mounted spotlight with joystick control in cockpitNature Pure 9C drinking water systemJabsco Quiet Flush (fresh water) head - aft (2015)Ruritan electro-scan sanitation system aft head (2014)Jabsco electric head - forwardKeel blasted & re-coated (2014)Hull below waterline epoxy coated & bottom painted - 2 coats of each (2014) Appointments are necessary to view this boat.

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13 Most Popular Swing Keel Sailboats Worth Considering

A swing keel sailboat allows you to explore shallower waters and launch your boat at shallow ramps with greater ease than a fixed keel. Additionally, swing keel sailboats are typically more affordable than fixed keel sailboats. In this article, we will introduce you to the 13 most popular swing keel sailboats that you may want to consider.

The 13 most popular swing keel sailboats that you may find worthy to consider are the following: Catalina 22, MacGregor 26, Hunter 22, Precision 23, O'Day 22, Beneteau First 235, Seaward 25, Islander Bahama 24, Watkins 27, Com-Pac 23, Montgomery 17, San Juan 23, and West Wight Potter 19.

The estimated pricing for the boats with swing keels ranges from $5,000 to $40,000. Let's take a look at which models are the most affordable and which are priced higher.

  • Catalina 22 has a swing keel that is made of lead and can be raised and lowered using a winch system.
  • The MacGregor 26 has a water ballast system in addition to its swing keel, which provides additional stability and helps keep the boat upright in rough conditions.
  • The San Juan 23 is a fast and responsive swing-keeled sailboat that has a sail area-to-displacement ratio of 18.8.
  • The Watkins 27 is a fast swing keel sailboat that has a reported top speed of around 7 knots.
  • The O'Day 22 features a swing keel that is retractable and allows it to sail in waters as shallow as 2 feet.

28 foot full keel sailboat

On this page:

Catalina 22, macgregor 26, precision 23, beneteau first 235, islander bahama 24, san juan 23, west wight potter 19, montgomery 17.

Below is a table summarizing why each of these swing keel sailboats is worth considering, as well as their estimated market price in case you'd proceed with buying them:

Retractable 550 lbs 2'0" 5'0" Popular, easy to sail, spacious cockpit, good resale value $5,000 - $15,000
Water ballast 300 lbs 1'0" 5'9" Dual-purpose (sail and power), spacious interior, trailerable $5,000 - $25,000
Retractable 300 lbs 1'6" 5'0" Affordable, easy to sail, good for day sailing and weekend trips $5,000 - $15,000
Retractable 600 lbs 1'8" 5'0" Well-built, good performance, spacious cabin, easy to trail $10,000 - $20,000
Retractable 550 lbs 1'8" 4'6" Affordable, good for day sailing and weekend trips $5,000 - $10,000
Retractable 500 lbs 2'0" 5'6" Fast, good performance, well-built, spacious interior $10,000 - $25,000
Retractable 1,600 lbs 1'11" 6'0" Well-built, good for cruising, spacious interior $20,000 - $40,000
Retractable 1,000 lbs 1'11" 5'6" Good for cruising, spacious interior, well-built $5,000 - $15,000
Retractable 1,000 lbs 1'11" 5'6" Affordable, good for cruising, spacious interior $10,000 - $25,000
Retractable 1,000 lbs 1'11" 5'6" Well-built, good for cruising, spacious interior $10,000 - $20,000
Retractable 1,000 lbs 1'11" 5'6" Good for racing and cruising, well-built $5,000 - $10,000
Retractable 300 lbs 1'0" 5'0" Affordable, easy to sail, trailerable $5,000 - $15,000
Retractable 650 lbs 1'8" 5'3" Well-built, good performance, easy to handle, comfortable cabin $5,000 - $15,000

The Catalina 22 is a popular sailboat model that has been in production since 1969. It is known for its versatility, ease of use, and affordability. One of the key features of the Catalina 22 is its swing keel, which allows it to be easily trailered and launched in shallow waters.

The swing keel on the Catalina 22 is made of lead and is attached to a cable that runs through a slot in the hull. The keel can be raised and lowered using a winch system, which allows the boat to navigate in shallow waters or be easily transported on a trailer.

When the keel is lowered, it provides stability and helps the boat sail upwind. When the keel is raised, the boat can be easily maneuvered in shallow waters or on a trailer.

This makes the Catalina 22 an ideal sailboat for those who want the flexibility to sail in a variety of conditions and locations. Catalina 22 is also a very affordable swing keel sailboat option. If you're curious about how much it costs to buy and own a sailboat , you can take a look at our article.

The MacGregor 26 is a popular trailerable sailboat that was first introduced in 1986. One of its unique features is the swing keel water ballast system, which allows the boat to be easily transported on a trailer and launched at various locations.

The swing keel is a retractable keel that can be raised or lowered depending on the water depth. When it is lowered, it provides additional stability and helps the boat track better through the water. When it is raised, the boat can be easily transported on a trailer.

The water ballast system is another unique feature of the MacGregor 26. The boat has two water tanks located on either side of the keel, which can be filled with up to 1,500 pounds of water. This water ballast provides additional stability and helps keep the boat upright in rough conditions.

If you're interested to know more about how sailing ballasts work , here's an article that can give you more information.

The Hunter 22 with a swing keel is a great sailboat for those who are looking for a versatile and easy-to-handle vessel. The swing keel allows the boat to navigate in shallow waters and provides better stability in deeper waters, so it is ideal for those who enjoy sailing in a variety of conditions and locations.

In addition, the Hunter 22 is a relatively affordable sailboat, making it a great option for those who are just starting out in sailing or who want to own a sailboat without breaking the bank. It is also a popular choice for families, as it can comfortably accommodate up to four people.

The Hunter 22 has a rich history, with the first model being introduced in 1973. Since then, the boat has undergone several design changes and upgrades, with the current model featuring modern amenities and technology.

The Precision 23 is a popular swing keel sailboat that is well-regarded for its versatility and performance. The swing keel design allows the boat to be easily launched and retrieved from a trailer.

One of the benefits of the Precision 23's swing keel design is its ability to sail in shallow waters. With the keel up, the boat has a draft of just 1'8", which allows it to navigate in areas that would be inaccessible to deeper-draft boats, such as coastal areas, bays, and estuaries.

When the keel is lowered, the Precision 23 has a draft of 5'0", which provides excellent stability and performance under sail. The boat is designed to be easy to handle, with a simple rig that is easy to set up and adjust. The spacious cockpit provides plenty of room for the crew to move around, and the cabin is well-appointed with all the amenities needed for comfortable cruising.

The O'Day 22 features a swing keel that is retractable and can be raised or lowered depending on the depth of the water. This feature allows the O'Day 22 to sail in waters as shallow as 2 feet, making it ideal for exploring shallow coves and bays.

This sailboat has a spacious cockpit, making it comfortable for day sailing or weekend trips. The cabin is compact but efficient, with a small galley, a portable toilet, and sleeping accommodations for up to four people.

The O'Day 22 is a popular choice for sailors of all skill levels, from beginners to experienced sailors. Its ease of use, versatility, and affordability make it a great choice for anyone looking for a reliable and fun sailboat.

The Beneteau First 235 is a popular sailboat that was first introduced in the early 1980s. It is a swing keelboat, which means that it has a retractable keel that can be raised or lowered depending on the depth of the water.

The boat is 23.5 feet long and has a beam of 8 feet so it is a relatively small boat that is easy to handle. It has a displacement of around 2,500 pounds, making it light, and can be easily towed behind a car.

The Beneteau First 235 is a popular boat because it is a well-designed and well-built sailboat that is both fast and easy to handle. The boat has a relatively narrow beam, which allows it to cut through the water with less resistance and achieve higher speeds.

Additionally, the boat has a relatively large sail area, which means that it can catch more wind and generate more power. The boat's hull shape is also optimized for speed, with a deep V-shaped hull that helps to reduce drag and increase stability. Deep-V hulls are one of the most stable boat hull designs .

The Seaward 25 is a swing-keeled sailboat that was designed by Hake Yachts and is popular among sailors who are looking for a versatile and easy-to-handle boat for both cruising and racing.

In addition to its swing keel, the Seaward 25 is also known for its spacious and comfortable interior. The boat has a large V-berth and a convertible dinette that can comfortably sleep up to four people. The boat also has a galley with a sink and a stove, as well as a private head with a marine toilet.

Another reason why the Seaward 25 is popular is because of its speed and maneuverability, making it a great choice for sailors who want to race or cruise at a fast pace. The boat is also relatively easy to handle so it can be sailed even by beginners.

The Islander Bahama 24 is a popular swing keel sailboat designed by Robert Finch and built by Islander Yachts from 1977 to 1982. It is a small, versatile sailboat that is great for day sailing, weekend cruising, and even racing.

The Bahama 24 has a spacious cockpit that can comfortably seat four people, and its interior is surprisingly roomy for a boat of its size. It has a V-berth forward, a dinette that converts into a double berth, and a quarter berth aft. There is also a small galley with a sink and a portable stove, as well as a marine head.

The Bahama 24 is a solid performer. It has a moderate sail area and a well-balanced rig, which makes it easy to handle in a variety of wind conditions. It is also known for its stability and its ability to sail close to the wind.

The Watkins 27 is a popular swing keel sailboat that was manufactured in the United States by Watkins Yachts from the mid-1970s to the early 1980s. It was designed by Walter Scott and is known for its spacious interior and good sailing performance.

The Watkins 27 has a length overall of 27 feet and a beam of 9 feet, 4 inches. It has a displacement of around 6,000 pounds. The boat has a spacious interior with a comfortable salon, galley, head, and sleeping accommodations for up to six people.

In terms of sailing performance, the Watkins 27 is known for being a good all-around performer. It has a moderate sail plan and a relatively low aspect ratio, which makes it easy to handle and forgiving for novice sailors. It is also a reasonably fast boat, with a reported top speed of around 7 knots.

The Com-Pac 23 is a popular swing keel sailboat that has been in production since the early 1980s. It is a versatile boat that can be used for cruising, racing, and day sailing. It is also a fast boat that can easily reach speeds of 6-7 knots in moderate winds.

The Com-Pac 23 has a spacious cockpit that can comfortably seat up to six people. The boat is also equipped with a cabin that can sleep up to four people and has a galley with a sink, stove, and icebox. The headroom in the cabin is generous for a boat of this size, and the layout is designed to maximize space and comfort.

The San Juan 23 is a popular swing keel sailboat that was first introduced in the early 1970s. It was designed by Bruce Kirby and built by Clark Boat Company in Kent, Washington. The boat was designed to be a versatile and affordable sailboat that could be used for cruising, racing, and day sailing.

Another feature that makes the San Juan 23 popular is its spacious cockpit and comfortable interior. The boat can accommodate up to four people and has a small galley, a head, and a V-berth. The cabin is well-ventilated and has plenty of natural light, making it a comfortable place to spend time below deck.

The San Juan 23 is a fast and responsive sailboat. It has a sail area-to-displacement ratio of 18.8, which means that it can achieve high speeds even in light winds. The boat is also very stable, which makes it easy to handle in rough conditions.

The West Wight Potter 19 is a popular swing keel sailboat that has been in production since the early 1970s. It is known for its versatility, durability, and ease of use, making it a popular choice among sailors of all skill levels.

Aside from its swing keel, it also has a relatively wide beam and a low center of gravity, which helps to keep it stable in a variety of conditions. The cockpit is spacious and comfortable, with plenty of room for passengers and crew.

In terms of performance, the West Wight Potter 19 is not the fastest sailboat on the water, but it is known for its ability to handle a variety of conditions. The boat is easy to sail and can be handled by a single person, so it is great for solo sailors or couples.

The Montgomery 17 is a popular sailboat designed by Lyle C. Hess and built by Montgomery Marine Products. One of the unique features of this sailboat is its swing keel, which allows it to be easily transported on a trailer and launched in shallow waters.

The Montgomery 17 has a classic design with a cabin that can sleep up to four people. It has a simple rigging system that makes it easy to sail, even for beginners. The sailboat is also known for its durability and has been used for long-distance cruising and racing.

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5 Best Liveaboard Bluewater Sailboats

5 Best Liveaboard Bluewater Sailboats | Life of Sailing

Last Updated by

Daniel Wade

December 28, 2023

Liveaboard bluewater sailboats are both comfortable to live on and capable of making long, offshore ocean voyages.

The best liveaboard bluewater sailboats must strike a balance between comfort and seakeeping abilities. These boats are generally heavy and stable and roomy enough to spend time in. They must also include the necessary hardware to make cooking, sleeping, and bathing possible in choppy conditions.

Table of contents

Bluewater Liveaboard Sailboat Design

What makes a good bluewater liveaboard sailboat , and how is it different from a coastal cruiser? There are a few aspects of purpose-built bluewater sailboats that make them different from most production vessels. The first and (possibly) most important is the hull design.

The classic bluewater sailboat hull shape features a long, deep, full keel. The keel acts as a hydroplane and keeps the boat stable on course in all sea conditions. Deep keel sailboats aren't the only kind of bluewater-capable vessels, but they're a tried and tested design.

Other vessels gain stability from having a wide beam. Beamy sailboats are far more comfortable in rolling seas, as they tend to buffett and pitch much less than leaner, narrow boats. Most ideal liveaboard bluewater sailboats balance length and beam carefully to make the most of the space and hull shape.

Space is another important quality to consider when choosing the best bluewater liveaboard sailboat. Interior space comes first, as living quarters are a key element of comfort.

Cockpit space should also be considered, especially if more than one person comes aboard. Most liveaboard bluewater sailboats sacrifice cockpit space for cabin space.

A comfortable liveaboard sailboat should include several amenities, including a head (toilet), a shower, two sinks, a galley with a stove, an icebox, a place to eat, and a place to sleep. Ideally, the dining area is separate from the primary sleeping area.

A separate chart table is ideal as well because it keeps food and clutter away from important navigational equipment. A chart table is less important on liveaboard sailboats that spend the majority of their time docked. That said, the chart table functions well as a spot for a microwave, toaster oven, or TV when you're not underway.

A separate forward V-berth, known as a master cabin, is a big plus on liveaboard boats. Separating the sleeping area from the rest of the cabin can increase comfort and coziness.

However, on a bluewater sailboat, a side berth near the hatch is essential as well. This is because you may need to quickly take control of the vessel after waking up, and it's best to sleep close to the helm.

Power and Water

Power and water shouldn't be overlooked when choosing a bluewater liveaboard. Many liveaboards spend most of their time docked and hooked up to shore power, water, and sewage. But bluewater liveaboards are designed for cruising, which means everything must be self-contained.

The best bluewater sailboats have sufficient freshwater storage tanks for several weeks on the water. Some have desalination (water maker) machines, which require electricity to run.

Solar panels are an excellent option for power generation, and they can be installed on almost any sailboat.

But all bluewater sailboats should have battery banks and a gasoline or diesel generator built into the system. On many vessels, the inboard engine also functions as a generator.

Safety is an essential factor to consider when choosing a cruising sailboat , especially if it doubles as your primary residence. Basic safety equipment such as bilge pumps and radios should be maintained and tested regularly. Backups and spare parts should also be kept aboard.

Other safety features, such as watertight hatches, can keep your cabin safe and dry during inclement weather. Self-draining cockpits are helpful when sailing offshore, as spray and waves drain from the exposed cockpit without the use of electric or mechanical pumps. If the drain ports are kept clean, no bailing is ever necessary.

Radar is another useful safety feature that, while not mandatory, can keep you in-the-know and alert you to the presence of nearby ships. Radar is especially useful at night, as the automatic alarms can wake you whenever a potential obstacle appears nearby.

Bluewater Sailboats for Living Aboard and Cruising

Living aboard a sailboat is one of the most interesting and rewarding lifestyles available today. It's even more alluring when you can sail your vessel across oceans, which is what bluewater sailboats are designed to do.

A liveaboard cruising sailboat combines comfort, seakeeping ability, and ease of handling in a compact and thoughtfully-designed package. Here are the best liveaboard sailboats for bluewater cruising.

1. Pacific Seacraft Flicka 20

{{boat-info="/boats/pacific-seacraft-flicka-20"}}

The Flicka 20 is the smallest and most interesting sailboat on our list. At only 20 feet overall in length, the interior accommodations of this vessel are spartan at best and suitable for minimalist living.

What makes the Flicka 20 stand out is its exceptional bluewater performance. This sailboat is truly an ultracompact pocket cruiser. With a full ballast keel, self-draining cockpit, and wide beam, the Flicka 20 is more capable offshore than some boats almost twice its size.

This sailboat has the profile of a traditional keel cruiser. From a distance, it would be easy to mistake for a much larger vessel. Its hull shape, manageable Bermuda rig, and small size make it a perfect starter sailboat for single handed offshore cruising.

Inside, you have (almost) everything you need to live comfortably, albeit in a minimalist way. The cabin features standing headroom throughout, which is highly unusual for a 20-foot sailboat. On the port side, you're greeted with a small but functional galley. On the starboard side, there's a small head with a toilet and a shower.

The Flicka 20 displaces a hardy 5,500 lbs. Due to its large keel, there's no centerboard trunk to obstruct interior space. A V-berth upfront makes up the sleeping accommodations, and some models feature settees on both sides with a pop-up dining and chart table in between.

The Pacific Seacraft Flicka 20 has achieved somewhat of a cult status amongst bluewater sailboat enthusiasts. Only about 400 were built, so purchasing a Flicka 20 is somewhat of a rare and expensive proposition. That said, the benefits of owning a 20-foot bluewater liveaboard sailboat are hard to beat.

Cheap slip fees, low maintenance costs, and simplicity are the major selling points of this vessel. It's trailerable behind most heavy-duty pickup trucks and technically small enough to store on the street or in a driveway.

2. Pacific Seacraft Allegra 24

{{boat-info="/boats/pacific-seacraft-allegra-24"}}

If the Flicka 20 is too small for your taste, try the Pacific Seacraft Allegra 24. It follows the same design principles of the Flicka 20, but with four feet of additional space for cabin amenities and seaworthiness.

Four feet may not sound like a lot, but it makes a world of difference on a sailboat. The additional space on the Allegra 24 adds room to the head, extends the port and starboard settees, and increases the size of the galley.

If you like the idea of a small, semi-trailerable offshore sailboat with liveaboard amenities, you'll love the Allegra 24. This stout sailboat has almost miraculous handling and seakeeping qualities while retaining the benefits of small overall size.

With the Allegra 24, you'll be able to make virtually any offshore passage and save on slip fees, maintenance costs, and overall labor. This vessel is easy to sail single handed and large enough for a minimalistic couple to live, eat, and sleep comfortably.

The Pacific Seacraft Allegra 24 is not ideal for people who need space for pets, children, or guests, as the interior is quite small when compared to other sailboats. That said, there's enough room for an occasional passenger, and the cockpit is comfortable enough for four adults to sit and interact.

3. O'Day 28

{{boat-info="/boats/oday-28"}}

The O'Day 28 is a popular sailboat that makes a great liveaboard cruising platform. This affordable vessel was produced between 1978 and 1986, and over 500 examples were produced over the years.

All in all, the O'Day 28 is a stout cruising sailboat that's suitable for offshore and coastal sailing. It features a raked stern and hidden rudder, and a helm that's similar to what you'd find on much larger boats.

The O'Day has a large fuel tank for its inboard engine and an even larger 25-gallon freshwater capacity, which is excellent for offshore cruising. Additional tanks can be added in storage spaces, making the O'Day 28 suitable for long voyages.

The cabin of the O'Day 28 is spacious and includes everything you'd need to live aboard comfortably, along with plenty of storage space throughout. The wide beam of the O'Day 28 gives it lots of space, so the cabin doesn't feel cramped for its size.

Two models of the O'Day 28 were built; one featured a swing keel, and the other had a fixed swing keel. The swing keel model is ideal for coastal cruising and shallow-water sailing, while the fixed keel O'Day 28 is more suited for bluewater cruising.

That said, both keel variants make fine offshore sailboats. The cabin of the O'Day 28 features a large galley with a stove and icebox, two large settee berths, a large center table ahead, and a V-berth forward. The head serves as a separator to the forward cabin, giving the V-berth an extra layer of privacy.

4. William Atkin "Eric" 32

{{boat-info="/boats/atkin-co-eric-32"}}

"Eric," designed in the 1920s by famous marine architect William Atkin, is a radical departure from typical modern liveaboard sailboats. However, as a bluewater liveaboard sailboat, this vessel likely outshines all the others on this list in almost every conceivable way.

Eric is a 32-foot traditional wooden ketch. This planked full- keel sailboat displaces over 19,000 lbs and has a draft of about five feet. The basic design of the hull is based on early Norweigian fishing boats, which were known for their resilience in rough North Sea storms.

Eric is a traditional gaff-rigged vessel with two short masts and a long bowsprit. Though complex to rig, it sails beautifully in all weather conditions. One of the earliest examples built survived a hurricane offshore in the 1930s, and subsequent models have completed numerous long-range ocean voyages.

Eric is a purpose-built long-range ocean cruiser. Interior accommodations are spacious and designed for comfort and utility. Unlike most sailboats of the time, Eric features a full head with shower, a 'master cabin' style V-berth forward, a full galley with an icebox, and standing headroom throughout.

William Atkin's Eric is, by all definitions, an ocean-crossing sailboat designed to take between one and four adults just about as far as they want to go. It has all the qualities of an oceangoing sailboat in a compact package, along with excellent seakeeping characteristics.

The primary drawback of this 32-foot Atkin sailboat is maintenance. Most of these hulls were constructed using traditional oak planking, which lasts forever if taken care of but requires skilled maintenance. The planks are caulked using cotton wadding, and they'll need recaulking if the boat stays out of the water for too long and "dries up."

If you're looking for a beautiful and historic liveaboard sailboat with serious offshore cruising capabilities, consider an Atkin Eric 32. Although somewhat rare, examples of this design occasionally pop up for sale on the used market.

5. Pearson 35

{{boat-info="/boats/oday-28"}}, {{boat-info="/boats/pearson-35"}}

The Pearson 35 crosses the rubicon into the 'big boat' category, as it has everything you'd expect of a large oceangoing sailboat. The vessel also has a unique displacement keel with an additional swing keel at the base.

The Pearson 35 is a roomy sailboat with excellent seakeeping abilities and a large sail plan. It's a typical Bermuda-rigged sloop with a tall mast and the usual sheet and halyard arrangement. As a result, it's fun to sail and easy to handle. It's also a fast boat, making it ideal for longer voyages.

The swing keel certainly doesn't make the Pearson 35 a shoal-draft sailboat. It has a modified full keel which (with the swing keel retracted) draws 3 feet 9 inches. With the additional swing keel down, the draft of the Pearson 35 increases to over 7 feet.

The Pearson 35 is a heavy boat with good sea keeping abilities. It was introduced in 1968, and over 500 units were produced. That makes it one of the more popular sailboats in its class, and plenty of Pearson 35s are still sailing around the United States.

Down below in the cabin, the Pearson 35 is roomy and comfortable. It features a full galley, an enclosed head with a shower and sink, and several berthing areas, including a forward V-berth. Plenty of storage is available throughout the cabin, making the Pearson 35 an excellent choice for living aboard.

There's something empowering about piloting a 35-foot sailboat through rough weather. The size of the boat provides both safety and a sense of security, which can help you keep a clear head during stressful situations at sea. The vessel is beamy as well, making it less likely to heel aggressively and increasing roll comfort in dicey seas.

Overall, the Pearson 35 is an excellent choice for a liveaboard bluewater sailboat. It's a large boat in comparison to the others on this list, and it's known for easy handling and excellent windward performance. The Pearson 35 is a common sailboat that's widely available on the used market.

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I've personally had thousands of questions about sailing and sailboats over the years. As I learn and experience sailing, and the community, I share the answers that work and make sense to me, here on Life of Sailing.

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