a siren call from afar…

 I’ve always had a love/lust attraction to Bill Tripp’s Columbia 50…

What’s not to like? It’s salty, sexy, and has that awesome flush deck. Obviously it’s too much boat for a couple on a budget but there is currently one for sale in Hawaii with an asking price of $35K that has me coming up with all sorts of compromises and justifications to make it a smart decision.

I mean, seriously, a boat as sexy as this going for $0.92 a pound is some kind of deal. Factor in the fact that the asking price is seldom, if ever, the sold price, we’re talking about a such a deal situation.

The problem is I can do the math and no matter how much I try to fudge the figures, it winds up being a problematic situation with no good outcome.

Compared to a CAL 34, which in the same general condition would cost around $8K with a cost per pound of $0.83, it still seems cost competitive.

Well, until you do the real world math.

A friend we met in Los Palmas while we were waiting to cross the Atlantic who had a Gulfstar 50 told me many times that buying and cruising on their Gulfstar 50 was a big mistake. They’d had a Gulfstar 37 which he considered a nearly perfect boat but for the circumnavigation his thoughts were that bigger was better and the added room would allow family members to visit along the way.

Not only was the Gulfstar 50 bigger it cost a lot more on every front. More work to keep it up, more money for bottom jobs, marinas, and fuel with the kicker being it was also more work to sail it which sapped a lot of the enjoyment they had in sailing. Lastly, they found that family seldom visited and when they did, they preferred to stay in a hotel or resort.

I get that and over the years I’ve seen the same situation play out time and time again. Still the elusive siren call of the Columbia 50 still whispers in my ear…

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1 thought on “a siren call from afar…”

  1. I don't know about you but there is something sweet about sailing on a big old classic. A good friend has a custom 1970s 50-foot full keel ketch with a Gardner diesel engine and a regular day sail on her cures my itch. My friend also tells me how big his yard bills are and that cures any notion the family and I have about a bigger yacht.

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