It took some time for the Stuart Knockabout, an L. Francis Herreshoff design, to take root and finally flourish. The 28-foot day boat first appeared in 1932 as line drawing number 53 in the L. Francis annals, and only one boat was built. In 1933, Ben My Chree (a Galic term of endearment), was launched and wound up nestled away in Casco Bay, Maine, at the island home of owner Willoughby Stuart. With its own small marine railway and boat shed, Ben My Chree remained in the family for nearly 40 years. In the mid-1980s, it was discovered in a Massachusetts boat shed by Bill Harding, a sailor known for his deft hand on the tiller and the builder of the popular Herreshoff 12 replica-affectionately known as the Doughdish. Harding fell for the lines of daysailer he had discovered, and he researched the boats lineage. After getting a feel for what it had to offer under sail, he decided that this was another slice of sailing history that deserved being resurrected.
With the introduction of the Santana 2023, one of the newer water-ballasted trailerables, the W.D. Schock Corp. in Southern California offered entry-level sailors the same types of mix-and-match options available at an automobile showroom. The A model is your basic family sloop with a contemporary, low-profile cabin. The 2023 C (cruise) has a longer trunk cabin with more amenities below. The 2023 R (race) is optimized for performance with a sprit for flying asymmetrical spinnakers, though you can add a tall mast to either the A or C model. The R model has the same cabin top as the A model, which we think is more attractive, but has less headroom below, of course.
Just a few years ago, the prospective buyer of a 25' sailboat knew that some serious compromises awaited him. His 25-footer would probably have little more than sitting headroom, might have four shelves that could reasonably be called berths, and probably had a head stowed under the forward berth. The galley? With luck, a two-burner alcohol stove, maybe a sink, and a water tank holding ten gallons. Auxiliary power? Usually a 6 hp outboard hanging off the stern or in a well in the lazarette.
This little sister to the F-27 folding trimaran is flat out fast and well built, but compared to a monohull (and you’ve heard this before), expensive and cramped down below.
The early 1970s was the heyday of the Tartan 30' racer/cruiser. In all, no less than two dozen boats of a similar size and type were introduced in just three years, many of them to become highly successful among sailors eager for the performance and amenities of big boats at a modest price. Among the most noteworthy and enduring of the 30-footers from this era has been the Tartan 30.
Like a lot of people, our first recollection of the Albin Vega was an advertisement in the sailing magazines. In the early 1970s, a time when California production coastal cruisers dominated the American market, this little Swedish import was hyped as a serious offshore cruiser.
The Alerion Sloop, Bristol Channel Cutter and Morris 40 cover the range from gentleman's daysailer to blue-water passagemaker. Each is of superior design and construction-it's nice to know you can still buy quality, but you'd better have deep pockets.
According to the BUC Research Used Boat Price Guide, Chrysler first offered recreational boats in 1957, building three aluminum runabouts and cruisers from 16' to 21'. Its first fiberglass boat was the Caribbean 19' cruiser in 1958. The Buccaneer was the first sailboat in the Chrysler line, introduced in 1971. The Chrysler 22 appeared in 1975. Just when Chrysler stopped building it is uncertain, but according to BUC, 1979 was the last year; we have not received information from readers owning boats built later than that, so perhaps '79 was indeed the finale.
From powerboat builder Bayliner, these two boats are very different in design and very similar in construction. The 295 is an outdated IOR design and the 305 a high-sided, shoal draft cruiser that makes too much leeway.
In the early '80s, S2 8.5 Meter reached more for the performance market with the Grand Slam series of small boats, and the 10.3 "offshore racer-cruiser." These higher performance boats were designed by Scott Graham and Eric Schlageter, well known for their MORC and smaller IOR designs. The S2 8.5 is a 28-footer cast in the company's traditional mold. Her hull dimensions, sail area, displacement, and general design characteristics put her square in the middle of the modern 28-footers such as the Tanzer 8.5, Newport 28, O'Day 28, and the Pearson 28.