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.
The Islander 36 was built from 1971 to 1985, making it one of the longest-lived 36-footers ever on the U.S. market. More than 750 of the Alan Gurney-designed racer-cruiser sloops were built, with production spanning almost the entire history of Islander Yachts.
The Islander 36 is a fairly light-displacement boat. The hand-laid hull is an uncored, single skin, with polyester resin and fiberglass furniture components adding rigidity. The hull and plywood-core deck are bolted together at close intervals through an aluminum toerail.
For cruising in comfort and sailing with ease it's hard to top modern designs like the Beneteau 393. Openness, creature comfort, and smooth-running systems put boats like these well ahead of the "narrow, dark, cavelike" designs of just a few years ago. However, if your need is to claw off a lee shore in a gale, to go where the waves are bigger than you are, or to cast off with "anything goes" readiness, these new coastal cruising designs aren't as good as the old.
With several hundred boats sailing the seas of the world, the Tayana 37 has been one of the most successful products of the U.S.s Taiwan-built boat invasion that began in the early 1970s. Its shapely Baltic stern, scribed plank seams molded into the glass hull, and lavish use of teak above and belowdecks have come to epitomize the image associated with Oriental boats.
The hull of the Tayana 37 is a fairly heavy, solid-glass layup. Some roving print-through is evident in the topsides. In the past, the hull-to-deck joint has occasionally been a problem. There is no doubt it is strong, but there have been numerous reports of leaking.
For people under 6 feet, the Oceanis 36CC offers more living space than any boat weve seen of compara- ble size. The accommodations are not only roomy but attractive, practical, and functional-either for cruising or for living aboard. She goes to weather better than most similar boats, but she falls short of being a good upwind performer. She reaches and runs with good quickness. In some ways, Beneteau can offer more product for less money than many of its competitors, especially in the area of finish and outfitting.
Hans Christian 34/36 - While not a good boat for the weekend coastal cruiser, or for anyone who does much sailing in light-to-moderate air, this is an excellent choice for the serious blue-water sailor. This is a boat that will take you offshore to Bermuda or just about anywhere and will stand up to a gale. The 34/36 won't get you there fast, but it will get you there safely.
During the late 1970s, when Taiwan-built boats began to appear on the U.S. market in in creasing numbers, few boats better illustrated the Far East yacht than the Island Trader 37 or 38. (Same boat, different name depending on which brochure, in which year, you read.) Imported to the U.S. by Marine International of Bay Head, New Jersey, between about 1977 and 1988, the Island Trader line apparently embodied the general misconception of what a real…