"Mid Size Power Boats" - Buyers' Guide by David Pascoe

Introduction to Boat Reviews

Our boat reviews are unlike any others you'll find on the Internet. They are not marketing gimmicks nor intended to sell you a boat. The primary reason we write these reviews is educational.

Many people are disappointed that they can't search the Internet and find reviews of the boats they are interested in. First, you need to understand that over the years there are thousands of builders building tens of thousands of different models of boats. This means that it's impossible for even a large corporation to cover them all, yet alone a small fraction of them.

Evaluating a boat is terribly time consuming and the only reason we are able to do it is through our normal survey business which makes these boats available to us.

We do not publish the results of surveys. While our reviews are often derived from surveys, they are not surveys. Boat surveys do not contain opinions; surveys are about facts. A review essentially constitutes the opinion of the reviewer. We are often accused of being opinionated, but that's what reviews are all about. Opinions.  People sometimes ask, "Why aren't your reviews more balanced?" Or they say, "Why are you always comparing every boat to top of the line boats like Hatteras, Bertram, etc.?"

The answer is that it makes more sense to compare with the best than with the worst. Sure, that makes it look like we're setting too high a standard when most people can't afford top of the line products, and it makes us look like we're thumbing our noses at lesser creations. We understand that the "average" boat owner can't afford the best, but neither can he afford something that's so poorly made that his large investment ends up going down the drain. That happens far too often, so it is the purpose of these reviews to assist buyers, especially newbies, to make better informed purchase decisions.

People also ask, "Why don't you review more small boats?" The answer is simple: most people buy small boats without surveys, so we rarely get to see them.

There is a common theme to all of these reviews, which is to help educate the reader on issues of quality and performance.  That can only happen if you take the time to read a variety of reviews, regardless of whether the particular boats fall in your category or not. The discussions contained in these reviews are all about what is right and wrong, from the standpoint of an expert.

You'll find everything from what makes for a lousy (or good) flying bridge layout, to what makes for a good sea boat, or what constitutes a maintenance nightmare versus a boat that is easy to maintain.

Finally, be aware that many builders turn out a large array of models over a long period of time. One of the hallmarks of the boat building industry is the lack of consistency through a product line. That means that a review of one particular model does not necessarily represent that builder's total output, either now or in the past. Builder that turn out perfection today may end up turning out junk tomorrow, and vice versa. Those that have developed reputations for quality have only done so through relatively consistent output. Yet even the best of them have turned out their share of turkeys.

When reading these reviews, please exercise this kind of discretion. And while we recognize that it's not easy, there really isn't any other way. There are huge numbers of choices out there. We can only hope that in some small way we can help you to narrow them down to a reasonable few.

Last updated March 20, 2000

David Pascoe Power Boat Books

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

David Pascoe Power Boat Books Visit for his power boat books

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 nearly 80 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.

On November 23rd, 2018, David Pascoe has passed away at age 71.

Biography - Long version

Articles at


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.
Nearly 80 countries
Countries List
Browse Chapters with Excerpt at