Preface to Yacht Reviews

Richard Jordan

Thank you for visiting Waves. Mostly what you will find here are reviews of used yachts with a few miscellaneous articles in between. These reviews are meant to be thoroughly researched, hard hitting opinion pieces on the good and bad of a given model. I combine the knowledge of brokers, owners, surveyors, clients along with my first-hand impressions. Many of the subjects I have had the pleasure to seatrial and survey giving me a modest idea of the common issues. My goal is to bring original information to the internet helping prospective buyers feel comfortable with all that goes along with any particular boat. The yachts chosen represent designs that I am most familiar with, and our brokerage primarily sells. We specialize in the sale of bluewater cruisers from 40 to 80 feet with prices ranging from $50,000 to $5 million. I focus on fiberglass yachts that have had long production runs and avoid custom designs.

I follow the Sailing Magazine review format. The format includes an introduction followed by First Impressions, Construction, What To Look For, On Deck, Down Below, Engine, Underway, and Conclusion sections. I may omit sections if I do not have enough information. In the introduction, I like to include a historical perspective of what lineage the design came from, in what era it was built, and how it has been received over the years. The background information I gather from interviews and literature. Hopefully, I uncover original information that broadens the existing knowledge base. These reviews are as much a learning process as an attempt to be informative to readers.

  1. The First Impressions section catalogues my initial visual inspection of an example of this yacht from the dockside. Before, climbing aboard I scan the yacht for what for instance makes a Hylas 46 different. I look at line drawings of the vessel to study her underwater shape and general proportions. I compare and constrast my impressions with other yachts, and from the hull lines, attempt to read deeper into the experienced performance characteristics.
  2. In the Construction section, I go to my interviews and literature to glean the standard procedures of the yard. I try to find out the ballast material, stiffening structure, mast step, hull layup, and deck core material among other common characteristics. From my dockside view, I note whether she has a teak caprail or perforated aluminum toerail, whether the portholes are plastic or stainless, and whatever else jumps out at me. I jump aboard and inspect the hull-deck joint, the non-skid or teak deck.
  3. In the What To Look For section, I accumulate the common problems I have heard about or experienced from survey results. The information usually will be touched upon in another section. These details are the most important part of the review and mention what someone should be particularly focused on as a prospective purchaser of this model. If the fuel tank of a Bayfield 36 is known to rust out or rudder failure is common on Hylas 54’s, a client should inquire what steps have been taken to fix and prevent these issues. It is important for me to be careful in this section and cross check my sources. Misinformation and false rumors are as dangerous as the absense of information.
  4. The On Deck section is mainly based on my impressions while roaming the deck of an example. I try to note the common deck hardware, the amount of ventilation and portholes along with the ease of movement. Especially important is the cockpit where sailors spend most of their time. I touch on the rigging and sheeting setup. I like to include build changes in the deck mold, hardware arrangements, and cockpit design.
  5. The Down Below section talks about the interior of the yacht. Often there are multiple layouts like on Cabo Rico 38’s, and I try to catalouge the different posibilities. I look at layouts as well as personally inspect an example. I gauge the quality of joinerwork, availability of storage, headroom, and general comfort.
  6. The Engine section is often one of the shorter sections. I touch on the fuel tankage, engine access, and engine itself. I base my information on literature, feedback, and my inspection. Often here I scan brokerage listings to ascertain the variety of engines or verify the difficulty of repowering.
  7. The Underway section is one of the toughest sections. Most of the vessels I have only shortly seatrialed. I rely on owner feedback, stories from captains, designer comments, and public opinion to put together a short guideline on the basic sailing characteristics. Often, I combine this section with the Engine section.
  8. In the final Conclusion section, I recap the main information I covered and tie back to my opening statements. I like to finish with an overview of usual sale prices for the model, the availability, and a reference for more information. The reference is usually a brokerage specialist or a helpful owners association.

What Waves is Not
Waves is not a place for specific information about any yacht or person. All information is anonymous and generalized from any specific vessel. While I necessarily base my impressions on individual yachts, these may have been at any time and any location. Please do not assume that I am talking about a specific local yacht.

Most of the reviews here are drafts in progress and subject to change at any time without prior notice. I appreciate feedback about errors and ommissions as well as general comments. The information here is my best attempt at the truth but may be innaccurate. In no way am I or Jordan Yachts liable for any actions taken on behalf of these opinion pieces.