by Tom Dove

Veteran new-boat reviewer Tom Dove divides his time between Annapolis, Maryland and Florida

Hunter Edge

by Tom Dove, Posted August 17, 2009
Every sailor’s perfect boat would be big enough to accommodate the whole family in luxury, perhaps 80 feet or so, and would have a draft of one or two feet for easy gunkholing, an efficient sail plan, good stability and speed, and mechanical aids for handling lines. The mast would lower easily to get under bridges. Oh, yes. It would not cost too much, would be beautiful to

Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 50DS

by Tom Dove, Posted February 2, 2009
Sailors who carry a folding multi-tool on their belts will tell you that they do so for safety reasons and also because there’s great value in versatility. They know that even though they may not be carrying the perfect tool for a job, they have something that can do a variety of jobs pretty well. Jeanneau’s Sun Odyssey’s DS series is rather like that.If you were custom-building a yacht to

Bavaria 38

by Tom Dove, Posted December 10, 2008
Even with the declining dollar, it’s possible to own a European cruiser that offers decent value for the money. Bavaria has built thousands of boats since it began in 1979, and the new Bavaria 38 Cruiser is a chip off the old block. With its moderate displacement, ballast, and sail power, it’s not extreme in any way, yet it does have a slippery underbody that gives it a performance

Beneteau First 50

by Tom Dove, Posted August 11, 2008
There's a whole lot more here than headroom and easily handled sailsThe hull form is sleek and sophisticated, the eyebrows above the ports denote competence and self-worth, and some of the accessories belowdeck are fine leather. The Beneteau First 50 starts with style, but it carries through with performance. An owner looking for a fast cruiser, an occasional racer, and/or a

Passport 515 CC

by Tom Dove, Posted August 11, 2008
Contemporary styling and custom features provide exciting alternatives for the serious cruiserSome people are satisfied with the basics—a basic car, off-the-rack clothes, a standard house floor plan, a production boat. But others are not. Bob Perry's Passport Vista 515 Center Cockpit cruiser comes from a builder who specializes in satisfying sailors who like to have

Catana 50

by Tom Dove, Posted August 8, 2008
Catana is back, and with a vengeance. This builder of performance-oriented cruising catamarans foundered when the fin-de-sicle dot.com crash decimated its customer list. But the company reorganized and is again building these swift, dramatically styled yachts in its Catalonian factory. This new 50-footer is very different from the 52-footer Catana was building under the old regime. Hull and

Beneteau 46

by Tom Dove, Posted May 27, 2008
Beneteau boats keep getting better looking while retaining the consistent quality and good finish that keep owners coming back as they move up in size. The new 46 could be an “ultimate boat” for many sailors who have experience in smaller vessels and are now looking for a stylish, fast, spacious boat that they can continue to sail into their retirement

Catalina 320 MK II

by Tom Dove, Posted May 20, 2008
Catalina boats typically have long production runs, and Catalina is more likely to tweak and update a boat than to totally redesign it. After building 1,039 Catalina 320s since 1993, with few changes other than offering a shallower wing keel about halfway through the production run, the company decided it was time to bring this popular vessel solidly into the new century.The

Grand Soleil 37

by Tom Dove, Posted July 17, 2007
On a gorgeous autumn day, I found myself trimming the mainsheet aboard a Grand Soleil 37 during a race series in Annapolis. There couldn’t have been a better way to test the sailing performance of this new boat from Italy.Though there are relatively few of this builder’s boats in the U.S., Grand Soleil is well respected among the cognoscenti here and in Europe. Its nicely

Far Harbour 39

by Tom Dove, Posted July 6, 2007
Click here to read a PDF version of this reviewMany of us would like to see the world from the deck of our own sailboats, but time, money, and long, slow offshore passages can interfere with that dream. Sailboats are efficient but slow, earning money requires time and roots, and crossing an ocean takes determination
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