Catalina Owner Reviews

Serving sailors online since 1997

Review of the Catalina 30 by Ralf Wilkowski

Year built 1978  
Location of boat San Diego, CA  
The boat is sailed on Open ocean  
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 2007  
If the clock could be turned back, would owner buy again? ...sure thing, she's a great boat that is easily fixed, sails well and there is plenty of help to go around.  
Gear that's been added Auto pilot, 2-speed self tailing winches, radar, propane water heater with outdoor shower, Bimini... Boat has been re-powered with a Volvo MD 2030 Diesel engine and has about 70 hours on it... the installer did an ok job... I needed to modify a few things after that, but all works well now... Boat has a folding prop.  
Structural or complex improvements ...nothing major, needed to build an engine box over the bigger Volvo diesel and while at it, added some storage and insulation in that area as well...  
The boat's best features ...she sails very nice, is forgiving and predictable and VERY roomy under deck... I like the fact that there are plenty of ideas for improvements floating around  
Problem areas in terms of design, materials, maintenance, etc. ...the usual stuff, navigation lights, one spreader light, anchor light etc. needs to be re-installed and I am switching everything to LED. Of course, the fact that some of the previous owner made some "Improvements" over the years, does not help either... lots of figuring out to do!  
Sailing characterisitcs ... very easy, responds very well as soon as the sails are set... develops some weather helm, but a dodger will take care of that, I think... easy to sail single handed!  
Motoring characterisitcs ...when I first got her, she would not follow directions... turned out that the fold ding prop was more of a massive blob of growth... after cleaning and polishing the prop, she motors fairly well... of course, with the power drawbacks of a folding prop.  
Liveability ...actually very good, due to the fact that there is a propane water heater and pressure shower as well as a propane stove, she is a good boat for two to live on... for weekend trips even up to 4... though not really for longer.  
The owner's experience in dealing with Hunter (if any) ...have not had the pleasure.  
The owner's experience with the boat dealer or broker, if any ...bought the boat from Seaforth Yacht Sales here in San Diego... very easy, very helpful... made sure I got the slip as well... would definitely deal with them again!  
Other comments ...I am looking forward to many years of pleasure, tinkering and open ocean freedom!  

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