Catalina Owner Reviews

Serving sailors online since 1997

Review of the Catalina 30 by Steve Ray

Year built 1982  
Location of boat Solomons Maryland  
The boat is sailed on Bays, sounds, or protected salt water  
How the boat is used Weekends and longer  
Normal wind strength 10-15 knots  
Average size of crew 2-4  
Liveaboard? No  
Owner bought the boat in 2000  
If the clock could be turned back, would owner buy again? I would most definatly buy this boat again. Though built for a coastal crusier i would sail this boat in blue water. As the saying goes, it's the crew that knows how to handle a boat and not the boat handling the crew. Vessel is very forgiving and will round if blown over too far. Likes to sail flat. Roomy with hand holds placed below for the slightly rough days. Alcohal stove is a little old but works fine. Alcohal is still cheaper than propane and natural gas.  
Gear that's been added ST-4000 auto-pilot for the quite times, Furl-tec roller furling, New depth tranducer and gauge. New safety lines from CRS in Annopolis. New Intrepid VHF,New throttle quadrant and shift quadrant from edson added to pedestal vice bottom left in seete (didn't quite fit right and had to modify due to marine_ _ _ _ pedestal).  
Structural or complex improvements Yes, had to remove mast and fix rotten compression post. Tried using the block of wood diagram from Catalina Direct but ran into to many problems. Built a dam that fit across the bilge right in front of the keel bolt closet to the compression post. Filled void with Fibercrete(concrete) and shimed with marine plywood pieces. Had to re-bed engine cradle due to bad engine mounts that the surveyor missed. Re-set cradle using polyester resin and glass, will last till the next century along with the Fibercrete.  
The boat's best features The room below for a 30 ft. boat.  
Problem areas in terms of design, materials, maintenance, etc. The bearings in the rudder post seem to be worn and steering gets stiff.  
Sailing characterisitcs Handles well in 10-15 knots then need to think about reefs. Sailed in a gale of 40knots and boat handled as well as can be expected for shoal draft. Never doubted boats ability. Thought bolts through the bulkheads makes this boat tuff along with the thick glass.  
Motoring characterisitcs I have the universal 11 H.P. in this vessel. It needs more power but hey, that's an auxillary engine for a sailboat. It's not a power boat.  
Liveability Would be comfortable for a couple or better for a single livaboard. If the wife goes, I know where I'm staying.  
The owner's experience in dealing with Hunter (if any) Haven't had to, I fix things myself.  
The owner's experience with the boat dealer or broker, if any Bought the vessel from the original owner.  
Other comments The newer Catalina's need more head room. I'm 6'3" and my 1982 just has the clearance, but I had to "duck" alot in the newer modules shown at the Annopolis boat show this year.  

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