Sabre 386

Since its founding by Roger Hewson more than 20 years ago, Sabre Yachts has excelled at building boats under 40 feet. The old Sabre 28 is certainly one of the best pocket cruisers ever marketed, and Hewson himself often asserted that the company's core boats were its 36-footers. I personally have always favored the Sabre 38, both the Mark I and Mark II models, built
Author:
Updated:
Original:
Sabre386

Since its founding by Roger Hewson more than 20 years ago, Sabre Yachts has excelled at building boats under 40 feet. The old Sabre 28 is certainly one of the best pocket cruisers ever marketed, and Hewson himself often asserted that the company's core boats were its 36-footers. I personally have always favored the Sabre 38, both the Mark I and Mark II models, built through the '80s and '90s, and thus welcomed a chance to check out their successor, the new Sabre 386.

I stepped aboard in Essex, Connecticut, was greeted by Skipper Russ, a lively character, and together we quickly dropped lines and headed down the Connecticut River toward Long Island Sound. As we motored south, I toured the interior and, as on the earlier 38s, was struck by the very efficient use of space in a boat that favors the performance side of the accommodation-versus-performance equation.

The one head, aft to starboard, is, to my mind, perfectly sized—just big enough to use comfortably, but not so big you flop around in it in a seaway—and has a full-size shower stall. The nav desk is big enough to hold a ChartKit, and there's plenty of room to install a modern electronic nav suite. Previous 38s had dedicated nav stations, but the new 386 boasts a clever convertible arrangement: the nav-station seat folds back out of the way to create a full-length settee berth.

Other new features include a convenient swim step in the transom, a nice transverse double berth in the aft stateroom, and a walk-around double in the forward stateroom. I was also struck by how Sabre continues to improve the finish quality on its boats. The exterior stainless steel on the 386 is absolutely flawless; the interior joinery, all in cherry, likewise seems only to improve with each new generation.

The wind on the sound, unfortunately, came in fits and starts. The biggest breeze we saw was 8 knots, and from it we managed to extract 6 knots of boatspeed close-hauled. In 6 knots of breeze we managed 4 knots of speed. Pretty darned good, as far as I'm concerned. Under power, at 3,000 rpm, the boat did slightly better than 7 knots; at 2,000 rpm we averaged about 5.3 knots.

Other things that impressed me include the deep keel sump (about 2 feet), the centerline galley sinks, the accessible engine space, the superior construction quality, and the excellent handholds throughout the interior. The only thing that bothered me was the lack of any place in the galley to store larger pots and pans. These will have to go elsewhere—perhaps in the forward stateroom, where there is scads of storage space.

Builder: Sabre Yachts USA, 207-655-3831, www.sabreyachts.com

Price

$230,000 (base, FOB Raymond, ME)

LOA

38'7"

LWL

32'6"

Beam

12'8"

Draft (deep/wing)

6'10"/4'10"

Displ. (deep/wing)

16,500 lbs/17,300 lbs

Sail area

763 sq ft

Power

40-hp Yanmar diesel

Fuel/water/waste

40/90/30 gal

Related

Untitled-1

ASA Presents Webinars with Peter Isler

Social distancing keeping you away from the boat? The ASA is here to help, announcing three webinars for improving your sailing without leaving home. They will be hosted by Emmy-winning sailing broadcaster and ASA co-founder Peter Isler. The webinars will cover topics such as ...read more

ASA-2048

Get out and Sail: Virtually

Just because you’re stuck at home self-quarantining, that’s no reason you can’t still hone your skills or teach someone else you know about boathandling with the American Sailing Association’s online Sailing Challenge game. Created in cooperation with Nolan Bushnell, a longtime ...read more

200324-VirtualSailing-2048

Time to Try Virtual Sailboat Racing?

Stuck at home self-quarantining? How about giving on-line sailboat racing a try? Begun in 2010 and now working in partnership with sailing’s international governing body, World Sailing, Virtual Regatta has long allowed fans to take an active part in everything from the Vendée ...read more

2003-ICW

How Risky is the ICW with Covid-19?

Being a cruising sailor, one is already practicing a kind of social distancing. But coastal cruisers, and those transiting the Intracoastal Waterway, in particular, still have to return to land for re-provisioning and things like water, fuel, and pump-outs. When you dock in a ...read more

05-Q&A-190826-11HRT-AMO-team-announcement-113

A Chat with Charlie Enright

Rhode Island native Charlie Enright, 35, has competed in not one but two Volvo Ocean Races (VOR), with Team Alvimedica in 2014-15 and Vestas 11th Hour Racing 2017-18. More recently, Enright and 11th Hour Racing have announced they plan to compete in The Ocean Race, the successor ...read more

06-Smoke-on-the-waterways,-SC

Cruising: a Long Haul North

There are many mantras experienced cruisers like to pass on to those less experienced. First and foremost among these is: “Never sail to a schedule.” After that comes: “Choose your weather window carefully.” Unfortunately, this past spring, my husband, Brian, and I violated both ...read more

The-Solent's-rough-seas-and-harsh-weahter-teach-valuable-skills-for-any-serious-sailor-(by-Eric-Vohr)

How to Become a Yacht Master

Learning to sail is an organic process. Often we’re introduced to the sport by a family member or good friend who loves sailing and wants to share their passion. As such, one learns in bits and pieces. The problem is you can end up with lots of missing bits, and thus many ...read more

IMG_2012

Experience: Threading the Needle in a Thick Fog

It was a dark night, utterly black. Any light was blanketed by the fog. My chartplotter was night-blinding me. I looked at the Navionics map on my phone, waited half a second for my eyes to adjust and then looked at the depthsounder. After that, I looked ahead to where Laura was ...read more