"Mid Size Power Boats": A Guide for Discreminating Buyers - by David Pascoe


Hatteras 36 Convertible


Best Buy


Hatteras 26 Convertible
Our survey model was a 1986 model with half tower and 3208 Cat 320's which didn't exactly make for a hot item on the market. Top speed was 20 down wind and 18 upwind! Fortunately, the new owner wasn't interested in going fast, but if you are you'll need more than 320's. And at 26,000 lbs. she's not real heavy and will do just fine with 375's. With 450 gallons of fuel, you've got plenty of range.

First thing you notice about this boat is that it is big for a 36 footer, seemingly even bigger than the Bertram 37 which is narrower by 3". What makes it seem bigger is the shorter cockpit and foredeck, thereby giving it more cabin space. Compare this with the 38 Convertible and  you'll see that its nearly the same size.  The main difference is that you're not going to fit a coffee table in there. And with big windows all around, the interior is light and airy. The salon is big and so is the bridge. This model had the galley up with a large sofa and just one chair; no room for a second.

Aside from styling, another difference is the backwards vee berth cabin that's definitely not easy to get in and out of. The head space is okay with an adequate shower . . . actually not bad for a 36 footer. As for the bridge, the layout is about as good as you're going to get on this size boat.

We found only a few complaints with this one, the first of which is that she had blisters on the bottom. The deck is glassed to hull but the rub rail is screwed on and was very loose in several places, and that's not easy to fix. The tower wasn't grounded but it was an add-on so we can't blame Hatteras. The removable fish box in the cockpit is the usual klutzy arrangement and takes two people to get it out of the hole, and with the large fuel tank, there's no lazarette storage. The tanks are fiberglass, so you don't have to worry about aluminum tanks corroding and leaking.

The generator is mercifully not under the cockpit deck but in the engine room which is a lot more cramped than we'd like, but most stuff is reachable with only minor pain. Everything down there is pretty neat and orderly. As usual, you have the good quality systems and hardware; no junky stuff here.

The interior has held up very well with all original decor and no window or other leaks at all.

Her sea keeping abilities are nearly as good as it gets, with a low profile bridge that keeps the center of gravity low. With the typical Hatteras warped plane underbody she is efficient while sacrificing a bit of the smoother ride of the deep vee. With a fairly full bow, she's rather wet but none of the windows leaked on this ten year old boat. With good maintenance, you couldn't tell this boats age by looking at it because it looked no more than about 4 years old. Ten years in Florida and the paint still had a shine; no crapola aluminum hardware to corrode, no leaking portholes or hatches, no hardware falling off, and no blankety blank teak. This had the optional tackle center and the inner plywood cabinets and drawers left a lot to be desired. We just can't figure out why Hatteras uses a junky plastic name plate on the side of the house. Its the only piece of junk on the whole boat.

Selling at $130k this was a good buy for a slow boat. With the 375 Cats she is a decent performer, and a very good looking boat too. If you had to choose between the 38 and the 36 and money was the question, no doubt about it, the 36 is the better buy.

Base 1986 price:            $212,000
W/usual equipment         $250,000

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David Pascoe Power Boat Books

Buyers' Guide to Outboard Boats Surveying Fiberglass Power Boats (2E)

David Pascoe - Biography

David Pascoe is a second generation marine surveyor in his family who began his surveying career at age 16 as an apprentice in 1965 as the era of wooden boats was drawing to a close.

Certified by the National Association of Marine Surveyors in 1972, he has conducted over 5,000 pre purchase surveys in addition to having conducted hundreds of boating accident investigations, including fires, sinkings, hull failures and machinery failure analysis.

Over forty years of knowledge and experience are brought to bear in following books. David Pascoe is the author of:

In addition to readers in the United States, boaters and boat industry professionals worldwide from over 70 countries have purchased David Pascoe's books, since introduction of his first book in 2001.

In 2012, David Pascoe has retired from marine surveying business at age 65.

Biography - Long version

Articles at
docksidereports.com

 

David Pascoe's
Power Boat Books

Mid Size Power Boats Mid Size Power Boats
A Guide for Discriminating Buyers
Focuses exclusively cruiser class generally 30-55 feet
With discussions on the pros and cons of each type: Expresses, trawlers, motor yachts, multi purpose types, sportfishermen and sedan cruisers.
Buyers' Guide to Outboard Boats
Selecting and Evaluating New and Used Boats
Dedicated for offshore outboard boats
A hard and realistic look at the marine market place and delves into issues of boat quality and durability that most other marine writers are unwilling to touch.
Surveying Fiberglass Powewr Boats
Surveying Fiberglass Power Boats
2nd Edition
The Art of Pre-Purchase Survey The very first of its kind, this book provides the essentials that every novice needs to know, as well as a wealth of esoteric details.
Marine Investigations
Pleasure crafts investigations to court testimony The first and only book of its kind on the subject of investigating pleasure craft casualties and other issues.
Readers
Worldwide
Over 70 countries
Countries List
Links to Each Chapter Contents with Excerpt at:
David Pascoe Power Boat Books davidpascoe.com

 

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Last reviewed August 07, 2015.