The thing to keep in mind when thinking about boats in this particular size niche is that, for the most part, they all fulfill the same needs. Which is hardly surprising when confronted with a 27ish by 9ish foot envelope.
Take the Catalina 27 for instance. It pretty much sets the norm for what you can do with a boat this small and it does it pretty well. More importantly for us it was a very popular design and they built lots of them which means that today (fifty years on) there are lots of Catalina 27s for sale.
Lots of boats for sale in a given market brings the price of a boat down and makes it that much more affordable. Which, I’ll think you agree is no bad thing.
Of course, the problem with a 27ish foot boat revolves mostly about the fact that it is a 27ish foot boat. While Frank Butler shoehorned an amazing amount of livability into such a small boat it is still a finite amount of space and most everyone is going to have to make concessions to the fact and adjust their live to that fact.
I often hear the advice that going up a foot or two will make for a better, more comfortable, and easier to live in situation.
The Catalina 28, the boat that replaced the Catalina 27, is a good example of how a slightly bigger newer design can improve things. I’ll go on record and say that I’d much rather have a Catalina 28 than a Catalina 27.
That said, there’s a catch.
The Catalina 28 is a lot bigger than the lowly 27. The Catalina 27 has a length 26.83 feet with a beam of 8.83 feet and a displacement of 6,850 pounds.The Catalina 28, on the other hand is 28.5 feet with a beam of 10.17 feet and a displacement of 8300 pounds.
That 1450 pounds of added displacement is a huge difference. As I’ve mentioned often that the real size of a boat is more about displacement than length. Well except when boats of a certain length becomes a design niche.
While the Catalina 28 is a good choice for a VolksCruier it is also going to be a lot more expensive then the Catalina 27 as only 620 of the C28s were built compared to the 6662 of the C27 it’s safe to say that the cost of a C27 is going to be cheaper.
The whole idea of this 27-foot boat series is more about how to make a boat better within a certain size envelope than to suggest that a 27-foot boat is the best boat to go voyaging with. I chose this particular size niche simply because it is the most bang for the buck due to the greater number of boats for sale within it and the simple fact that most everyone wants something bigger. Which makes it your best bet for getting a good boat cheap.
More on the subject soon come.