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Cruising Machine for Sale, $249,000 USD

1991 Jeanneau Lagoon 47 Sailing Catamaran, children sold separately

For years we nursed the dream of selling everything and going sailing. We weren't sure exactly where, but we knew our house wouldn't float, so a boat was in order. But which one? There seemed to be thousands of choices. Like many, I first thought a big, strong, steel monohull. Then we saw a few. My wife is easy going, but put her foot down when it came to living in a 'deep, dark hole'. I felt the dream slipping away.

Fortunately, we arranged to see a catamaran a few days later. The salon was bright and airy, the ride was flat, things stayed where they were placed. One could sail and cook, sail and walk around, sail and live all at the same time. We were converted.

After spending a few years test-driving the idea with a partnership boat, we realized the kids were getting older and our knees were getting weaker by the day. But which boat to choose? For us, these were the essentials:

  1. A proven track record, solid resale value
  2. Isolated engine rooms for quiet, smell-free motoring when it was necessary
  3. Family-friendly, conservative sail plan
  4. Solar and wind power sufficient for day to day needs
  5. Beds for all three kids plus mom and dad
  6. Galley down, so kitchen chaos doesn't take over living area
  7. Large cockpit with room for dining; we eat outside every day
  8. Dinghy capable of planing with the full crew and 200 pounds of provisions
  9. Heavy davits capable of lifting the dinghy with the outboard

We looked at numerous boats in Annapolis, Newport and Miami. We didn't really want a charter boat design, but none of the owner-centered layouts had enough sleeping room for kids and visiting family/friends.

Then we found this boat. She was a Jeanneau Lagoon 47. I had never heard of a Jeanneau catamaran. In conjunction with her bigger sister, the Lagoon 55, these were both the founders of the Lagoon series and built by Jeanneau before they were bought out by Beneteau a few years later. Rumor had it that they had carbon fiber in key stress areas, dual anchoring systems, dual water systems, dual fuel systems and a heavy rig with dual gear-driven steering. These features make sense if you sit down to build a great catamaran, but have long since been 'economized' out of modern production catamarans. We decided it was worth a look.

Compared to the Fountaine Pajot we owned previously, she felt rock solid, sailed like she was on rails and lay quietly at anchor. Her staterooms had ample berths, and good ventilation. The heads were small, but workable. The galley felt huge, was open and airy and featured a top of the line stove, generous counter space and huge cold storage compartments (we subsequently used for canned good storage). We didn't care for her rounded salon seating and wished for more headroom in the doorways, but every boat has its tradeoffs. We came away impressed and soon inked the deal.

Then the whirlwind of moving aboard came. There were boat issues, there were cultural issues, family issues, stuff issues and separation issues. Three years later, we look back and see some mistakes we made, some things we should have fixed sooner and some things we should have done differently. But the boat wasn't one of them. Day in, day out for over 12,000 sailing miles she has delivered. In sudden 40 knot gusts and huge seas, trailing bull Mahi Mahi in the Gulf Stream, reaching under bluebird skies in soft breezes off the Bahamas, threading through rocky Maine passages under full sail and humming quietly under the bridges of Norfolk's industrial district she has met or exceeded our expectations.

Sure, there were some bad days, UV covers shredded, ignition wiring snafus, the accidental gybe in 30 knots surfing 15 foot waves at 2am that yanked the preventer so hard it ripped a deck cleat out. But, this is normal sailing stuff common to any boat that isn't chained to a marina. We don't know if the shore power connection works because we have never used it. The previous owner didn't know either, because he had never tried it. If this shocks you, find a marina bound boat with air conditioning and a lawn growing on its bottom. Our boat is not for you.

We have since seen many, many more cruising boats and had long conversations with their owners. We have compared lessons, notes and troubles and, at the end of the day, want no other vessel. Most of our cruising brethren leave with envious eyes. We have had many "boat swap" offers made with a joking smile. We have had several serious offers to sell a half, or quarter, of her to cruising friends headed back to the cubicle.

If we were going to cruise for another decade, this would be our craft. But the itch has been scratched, family ties call and it's time to write a new chapter. Perhaps she'll be part of your story.

Gear & Equipment

In short, everything you need to cruise will be aboard when you arrive. The only exception would be a laptop with proper charting software capable of receiving USB inputs for 3D GPS and AIS receivers. An iPad would be a smart option as well. Initially, we shopped around for expensive proprietary electronic systems, but started using the laptop, then an iPad and now it's all we use. We have each loaded with different charts and we cross reference them when necessary. In order of importance:

Anchoring Tackle

  • Dual anchoring systems with Lofrans windlasses, each with 10mm galvinzed chain.
  • 30 kilo Bruce with 100 meters of chain with Powerball swivel.
  • 20 kilo Spade with 40 meters of chain with three-way Suncore swivel. Chain new July 2013.
  • 35 kilo Brittney storm anchor, aka 'The Monster'.
  • 20 kilo Bruce anchor, used as a stern or kedge once in 2 years.

Safety/Communications Gear

  • ACR 406 GPS-enabled EPIRB, expires 2016.
  • Icom VHF IC-M302 VHF.
  • Two Standard Horizon Submersible handheld VHF radios.
  • Dessalator Watermaker, rated at 60 liters per hour, actual more like 40-45, new membranes April 2012. TDS at last check was 269.


  • Two new 3JH5's installed December 2014. As of Feb 2015 they have 13.5 hours each. Two year recreational warranty certified with Yanmar.
  • Dual helm station with gear-driven actuation, wheels turn together.
  • Autohelm ST-7000 Autopilot.
  • Flex-o-Fold props, port and starboard.
  • Engine-fed hot water heaters for both water systems, port and starboard.

Sails & Rigging

  • Full rigging inspection May, 2014. Replaced 12mm cap shrouds Port and Starboard ($1,700). Headstay inspected and certified.
  • Fully battened Doyle mainsail with stack pack arrangement and triple reefing points. New sail bag in Sunbrella Toast, 2010.
  • Fractional head sail on Profurl roller. New roller unit 2013 (800 Euros)
  • Genny on soft roller can be rigged from bow sprit. It's an old used sail, works okay, but should be replaced.
  • ICW friendly mast height of 62 feet. We passed under many bridges in North Carolina and Virginia without problems.
  • Heavy, one-piece aluminum mast with welded fittings.
  • 22-foot heavy welded boom.
  • Industrial strength gull striker, none of that bent aluminum tube or curtain track silliness


  • Two new (Oct 2013) Kyocera 140 watt solar panels added to existing array for a total of 640 watts. Frequently see 44+ amps coming in, 55 amps peak possible.
  • New (2011) custom-built Paneltronics 12V LED backlighted distribution panel.
  • D400 Electic Energy wind generator, bearings changed in Jan 2013.
  • Solar panels on dual Morningstar Pro Star 30 Charge controllers.
  • 8 X 215 AMP Hour batteries. New November, 2012.
  • New (Jan 2013) Go Power 3000 Watt Pure Sine Wave Inverter, with remote switch


  • NEW (Feb 2014) 25 HP Tohatsu 2-Stroke.
  • Caribe 11.5 RIB dinghy with storage compartment and anchor.
  • Custom Sunbrella dinghy cover.


  • New epoxy, fiberglass and Nyda-Core walkable hardtop. 132 square feet, 155 pounds. Includes integrated rain catchment
  • New Sunbrella Toast shade awning sheds water to hardtop
  • New Sunbrella Toast side awning with windows. Cockpit stays completely dry in torrential downpour.
  • New Bottom Paint, October 2013.
  • Optional Pressurized Salt Water system plumbed to kitchen and anchor washdown.
  • Custom made bimini frame, made in Florida. Puts the factory version to shame.
  • Numerous snorkel masks, fins, etc aboard.
  • Extensive array of kitchen tools, pots, pans, etc.
  • She was used for captained charters before our ownership, just a few accessories would be needed for charter operation (coffee maker, microwave, extra towels).
  • New (2011) Force 10 Marine 4-burner galley stove/oven with thermostatic temperature control and broiler.
  • LED anchor and tri-color combo on the masthead.
  • 'Bottle Brush' lightning charge diffuser.
  • Sunbrella and 90% snap-on window screens (one set of each).
  • Sunbrella sunshade for trampoline area.
  • Side and back sun awnings to further shade cockpit area.
  • Flip down swim ladder on port side.
  • Four staterooms, galley down layout with large salon and nav station table.
  • New Jabsco 4 gallon per minute water pumps, port and starboard (2011).
  • New Jabsco electric head in starboard aft bathroom (2011).
  • New LED cockpit courtesy lighting, (2011).
  • New 4 inch cockpit cushions with Dryfast foam and Champagne Covers
  • Nu-Teak decking installed on transom steps, June 2012
  • USCG Registered, U.S. Flagged and Titled

Video Walk-Through

A walk-through tour of the boat just before our purchase in May 2010; doesn't show much detail, but gives a better sense of scale than individual photos.


  • Email: peter at advanced-design dot com
  • Text Message or Voicemail: 907.244.5064