Sunday, 6 May 2012

Hardy Motorsailer


Hardy Motorsailer
Still thinking about motorsailers and wondering if a Colvin Watson may be a bit too aspirational for my pocket. Lower down the price scale there is a pretty good looking 20 footer called a Hardy Motorsailer. I had a good look around one in the drying harbour in Jersey last year. As a sheltered-water weekender she could offer a great deal of fun with the power to get you home if the wind turns against you. The accommodation is much better than you would expect of a sailing boat of the same size but these boats are small and relatively light so I’d think twice about extended open sea cruising in one. Not on my list therefore.

I suppose one consideration with a motorsailer is whether you are buying a motorboat with some sailing capacity or a sailing boat with a larger than average engine. Traditional thinking is that you can’t have your cake and eat it a motorsailer is good at one thing or another but not both.

But, now for another idea. As you move towards bigger and more modern boats, maybe the traditional concept of a motorsailer begins to ‘blur’. Engines have become progressively lighter and more powerful and this has allowed many manufacturers to pack a lot more power into increasingly smaller spaces. So the old idea is gone. A sailing yacht auxiliary engine is no longer merely used to get into and out of harbour. These days many sailing craft carry power units that would put a traditional motorsailer to shame. Take the Westerly Centaur for example, designed in the 1960s and described as a ‘gentleman’s yacht’, an out an out sailing boat. Despite the description, she carried a beefy 25hp inboard diesel as standard. In effect, she was (and is) a motorsailer in every sense of the word. So, maybe I can have my cake and eat it.

Hardy Motorsailers: Can vary enormously some have inboard engines – many have outboards.
LOA 20’
Draft 2’6”
Engine – often a largish outboard such as a Honda 50
Price - £10,000 - £15,000 depending on age and configuration