Boat Reviews

Dufour 455

by James Jermain, Posted September 23, 2005
Forty years ago Michel Dufour dragged boatbuilding into the industrial age by being one of the first to design boats specifically for production building methods. The company came out of some recent financial troubles and launched a “new era” in 2003. Since then two parallel but carefully matched lines of cruising boats have been introduced.One is a group of performance

Baltic 79

by Sail Staff, Posted January 18, 2006
Delivered to an Italian owner last year, this carbon-composite hull has a lifting keel that can reduce draft from 14 feet, 9 inches to less than 10 feet. The rig includes a new “canoe” boom that is supposed to be easier to use and store the mainsail better than the more traditional wide, flat Park Avenue boom. The nonoverlapping jib makes the yacht easy to handle, and the

Shipman 63

by Sail Staff, Posted January 18, 2006
When their carbon/epoxy-hulled 50-footer was launched two years ago, it was named European Boat of the Year. But the Shipman design team has decided there is also a need for a yacht in the 60-foot range that can make offshore passages quickly and effortlessly. The result is this pilothouse design the Shipman team is calling “the racer’s ocean cruiser.” The lightweight

True Wind 32

by Bill Springer, Posted September 22, 2004
The True Wind 32 presents an interesting amalgamation of features. It's a 32-foot cat with a rigid open bridgedeck and is built to sail faster than wind speed in the right conditions, to provide the amenities of a pocket cruiser, and to be capable of easily folding up onto a street-legal trailer.During my test on Florida's Biscayne Bay in 10 knots of breeze and flat water, we hit 8 knots on

Hoyt H-10

by Bill Springer, Posted September 21, 2006
You’ll find Opti-mists and 420s on many yacht-club docks, but hasn’t the time come for a more modern small-boat design? Designer Garry Hoyt thinks so. His new H-10 is designed to be a stable, fast, and fun dinghy that will fill the gap between the Opti and bigger boats like the Laser and 420. To keep the boat light and easy for a kid to handle alone, the 10-foot-long hull is

Kanter 47

by Sail Staff, Posted September 29, 2006
This yacht was built for Jim Stephen, an avid one-design sailor who wanted good speed under sail, plus plenty of legroom for his family when they are cruising. The result is this moderate-displacement centerboard sloop designed by naval architect Dieter Empacher and built in aluminum at Kanter Yachts in St. Thomas, Ontario. The raised deckhouse and large windows create a spacious and well-lit

Open 5.70

by Bill Springer, Posted May 11, 2007
With its flat, plane-friendly Groupe Finot hull shape, dual rudders, square-headed full-batten main, and lifting, narrow-chord bulb keel, the Open 5.7 is obviously designed for the high-end of the performance spectrum. It’s only 20 feet long, displaces merely 1,020 pounds (330 pounds are in the keel), and boasts a working sail area of 280 square feet. Off the wind the 5.7 carries a

Hanse 430e

by Sail Staff, Posted August 6, 2008
Once the term “mid-size cruiser” was used to describe boats from 30 to 35 feet, but many of today’s popular “mid-size” boats are larger. The new 43-foot Hanse 430 is performance oriented, as might be expected; it was designed by Judel/Vrolik, designer of Alinghi’s America’s Cup boats. As I found during my test sail in Miami, the 430e (epoxy) is a quick cruiser rather than a racer.

X-34

by Sail Staff, Posted August 11, 2008
Many of today's boats are designed to be both quick and comfortable, and X Yachts continues to stake its claim in the performance-cruiser market. The X-34 is light, nimble, and sturdy, as I learned firsthand during several hours of thrashing into a stiff 17-to-20-knot headwind and steep chop on a recent 50-mile test sail/delivery.CONSTRUCTIONThe hull and deck are built

Morris M29

by Peter Nielsen, Posted May 11, 2009
This pretty little boat was conceived in response to requests from owners of bigger Morrises for a smaller, simpler daysailer. The earlier Morris daysailers—the M36, M42, and M52—were father/son collaborations between Tom and Cuyler Morris, but Tom’s lengthy illness meant the M29 bears Cuyler’s stamp. Hull #1 was completed and launched in the frigid depths of the Maine winter,
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