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Something sensible, Hauraki Gulf, east North NZ, while we save for Cat?

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Its amazing you dont really see a lot of age difference unless you double your money. In some ways I wonder if I am better off buying a good used hull and having it refurbishing the interior (why was purple so trendy in the 80s eeeek), re built engine, new sails if needed, basically buying one of the recommended hulls at a good price and putting a bit of money into it. Im also not a huge fan of the look of wood in a boat, I know its traditional, but I much prefer the look of lighter coloured laminates used in modern Cats etc. 


What is the minimum size I should be considering for a coastal blue water sailer, ie up to 3 kings, out to GBI? Is the Lotus 10.6 too small? I like its layout and its the smallest yacht with a wheel helm. I could easily add a swim platform but the MK2 I like has a built in boarding platform which looks to be plenty accessible to fish to haul aboard. 35ft should be sweet for the kinds of voyages I plan on right?

Im pretty competent in my sailing ability, but nothing beats length when it comes to an unexpected 40 knots which "can" spring up out of nowhere, Ive seen it happen plenty of times on both sail boats and game fishing power boats.

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Loads of lotus 10.6s have been to the pacific islands etc so no probs there.


As some above have said you may need to weigh up your expectations as you might have to trade some against others. A decent 40 footer for 50k in good nick that performs reasonably is unlikely in my opinion. If you're prepared to sacrifice performance and get something like the p38 mentioned above then perhaps you might.


If 50k is the budget you're probably more likely to find a well looked after one not needing a pile of work if looking at 10ish meter boats like the lotus 10.6, Beale 33, wright 10, Farr 1020, townson 34 etc. Examples of all of these have been offshore so are quite capable of going anywhere around coastal NZ with some planning. Also as said above, if you are determined to have a wheel you are really limiting your choices in this price (and size) range.

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What about something like this? https://www.trademe.co.nz/2237339979

Doesn't quite have the interior volume of a lotus 10.6 but looks pretty well sorted in terms of your requirements (except for the wheel).

That one has a ship's bulb added to the bow, for some very strange and random reason. Fairly sure the stern has been extended also. In one photo it just doesn't look right, like a bad nose job, but on the arse. Other than those two aspects, its a perfectly legit prospect.

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I think it’s worth rethinking and moving past the whole wheel thing for your needs.


1. A wheel takes cockpit space where you will spend a lot of your time


2. Tillers are nicer to feel your boat. They make it easy to fit affordable self steering, including the ability to drive with bungies or sheet to tiller.


3. Practically no performance 35ft yacht has a wheel.


4. In the 30-40 ft range the advantages of tillers pretty much annihilate the advantages of a wheel without the hassles of mechanical linkages.


Deal with your wheel envy and you have a tonne of great options available.


The smaller wheel steered boats i’ve Looked at have tended to be poor retro fit jobs.


Tillers you have boats by Wright, Young, the Cavs, Ravens etc, Townsend, Stewart’s etc.


My 35ft Tiller steered boat is planning on going Way North and if I sold it today would be close to your price range ( I won’t sell her for twice that though as I have way to much sweat capital and $$$ in her now for that). That’s boats!

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That one has a ship's bulb added to the bow, for some very strange and random reason. Fairly sure the stern has been extended also. In one photo it just doesn't look right, like a bad nose job, but on the arse. Other than those two aspects, its a perfectly legit prospect.

Yeah stern has also been extended. Hard to imagine that the bow bulb couldn't be removed pretty easily though if it bothered you.


Completely agree with tazzy devil's comments above re the wheel. I have a wheel on my 39 footer and don't consider it a plus. In my case the wheel takes up space that a tiller wouldn't (and my 39 footer has a pretty big cockpit). The boat is great in other ways but I don't love the wheel.


Another pro tiller point is for short handed sailing a tiller tends to mean you're a bit further forward in the cockpit so it's easier to reach other things (halyards, sheets etc) than if you're stuck behind a wheel at the back of the cockpit.

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Wheel is just personal preference, as its a cruiser, feel is not so important to her. I get why some prefer tillers, it also brings us back to how we learnt to sail dinghies as kids, which is part of feel. But its not on the plans and Im ok with missing out on the other boats and limiting my options.

I REALLY like the look of the Lotus Mk2, Ive seen a couple done up and they scrub up nicely. 35 feet to the Islands would be a challenge, not one I am scared of. 

Ive also noticed a lot of large cabin sloops with wheel houses inside, that might be up her ally. Technically arent most yachts sloops, from wiki "sloop is a sailing boat with a single mast typically meaning one headsail in front of the mast, and one mainsail aft of (behind) the mast"


I think getting use to something like the Lotus will be just a confidence thing for the lady to go to the islands. I would not go without modern safety gear and electronics fitted either. 

A big issue for me is, I was a 12ft centre console RIB for spearfishing and exploring once we have moored at set location. Especially GBI where ive never had a bad day spearing. 12ft centre console just wouldnt be possible on the bow would it? The stern it would block any game fishing I had planned to do when under way. I prefer fiberglass, I had a Caribe 14 prior and they use large pontoons, 50cm. In fact I use to take that out from Gulf Harbour and cover most of the Gulf including LB with gas, but 2 x 25l yamaha totes are made to fit between the stern seats, really good system, had a tiller gear shift 3cyl yamaha 40 repropped and foiled for hole shot and I could fully load the dinghy with people and gear and it was always immediate hole shot. But my expectations on size and using ally hull for weight are realistic given a 35ft  yacht is not going to handle a heavy 14ft caribe and large 40hp. 

So I am think 12ft ally hull and 18hp Tohatsu 2 stroke which is the same weight as a yammy 15hp. Given its mostly just myself and the Mrs, that is plenty, in fact I could even drop to a 9.8 tohatsu which is the weight of an 8hp. 10ft is too small, 12 ft in ally would be limited to fairly low winds and swell around the Islands. Once at location I would likely tow the dinghy if moving location locally until ready for voyage back. 

Thanks everyone for the input. I was going to wait until we could afford the Cat and just keep power boating, but I miss being out there with a few lures being towed behind, making for really amazing holidays and big fish without the cost of a big engine off shore fly-bridge cruiser. maybe I am alone in the romantic idea of letting the wind do the work in trolling lures :-)

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Dinghy with a centre console will be quite a hassle to store on board... Maybe on transom davits but then it's in the way of your fishing. And you'll struggle to fit a 12 foot dinghy of the foredeck of a lotus 10.6. we carry a 2.8m (9ft?) Dinghy on the foredeck of the 39 footer and it's a squeeze.


Sounds a bit like your wish list is more in line with a $150k boat than a $50k one... Like I said earlier might have to weigh up your requirements and trade them off against each other.

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