Macgregor Owner Reviews

Serving sailors online since 1997

Review of the Macgregor 26X by Chuck Haas

Year built 1999  
Location of boat Marina Del Rey, CA  
The boat is sailed on Open ocean  
How the boat is used Day sailing  
Normal wind strength 10-15 knots  
Average size of crew 2-4  
Liveaboard? No  
Owner bought the boat in 2000  
If the clock could be turned back, would owner buy again? Probably. I have a partner who went in with me on the boat. He was very intrigued by the fast motoring ability. If it was up to me, I'd consider a Catalina 25. However, nothing racks up miles like the 26X: This Summer, I went up to Channel Islands Harbor. 40 NM in 5 hours. I don't think the Catalina can do 8 knots upwind that consistently...  
Gear that's been added Too much to list: - Honda BF50, extra 12V battery and switch - Genoa with Roller furling - Slugged main, added reef point, boom vang, canvas sail cover, Windex - Cockpit cushions, Humminbird sounder, Garmin GPS 200 - Hinges and latches on lockers. Teak storage unit over galley - ICOM-45 VHS with masthead antenna, Panasonic CD player and speakers, 12V outlet. - Larger head, Beckson tinted portlight (matches) - Vinyl lettering (port and starboard) - Trailer: Bearing Buddies, spare tire, brake flush system  
Structural or complex improvements - Larger 5/32" forestay - Hand-crafted teak-and-holly sole  
The boat's best features 1) Cost 2) Overall speed (due to motor) 3) Comfort- very dry sailor, due to high freeboard 4) Low maintenance 5) Cheap insurance- $150 a year through Boat US  
Problem areas in terms of design, materials, maintenance, etc. Generally very satisfied in these respects. Worried that the trailer may rust away to nothing in a few years due to repeated salt water immersion. Would have paid more for galvanized, which is what almost all of the 100+ older Macs in my storage yard currently rest on.  
Sailing characterisitcs Just had one of the best sailing days ever: 15+ mph winds with full genny but slight REEF in the main. You've got to have your sailmaker put in an intermediate reef point- your wife will sail with you more frequently due to the reduced heel. You still go just as fast: 5-6 KTs. Winds of 5 - 10 KT not as good- boat speed is only 2 - 4 KT. I don't beat much, but don't mind any reach from close to very broad to almost a run. I'm still struggling with downwind. The boat's fat ass slows things down when it's all the way in the water like that.  
Motoring characterisitcs Very good. Add ballast for rougher days. Top speed was 21 mph with 3 aboard and overnight gear. Cruises at about 12, but 8 KT is more efficient. Get about 6 MPG when at moderate speeds, probably 7+ MPG if I keep her around 2000 RPM or less. Love the Honda. Would do that again in a heartbeat. Only thing better would be EFI, but don't get the Suzuki- I've read nightmare stories. Be sure to get the right prop. I think it's 14 x 11.5?  
Liveability Great for 2. Can be exteded time periods if you add a Solar Shower type deal. I've slept 4, but you've got to be vigilent and keep clutter down. I added closed-cell foam pads under all of the berths, which is nice. The wood sole was key to keeping things clean. I couldn't stand that nasty blue carpet- always dirty, wet or both. Only use the stove for coffee now, which is fine. Otherwise it's bagels, sandwiches and dinner on shore. Foods you can hold securely in your hand are best, esp. if you're the helmsman! I've taken 8 people around the harbor for dinner and fireworks- great fun!  
The owner's experience in dealing with Hunter (if any) H-A-T-E buying parts from them. They don't take credit cards. I belive I had to send a Money Order. What a pain! Shame on you, Bill Snedekker- that process needs some Customer Orientation! Better to find a dealer you like and go with them. Pricing should be the same.  
The owner's experience with the boat dealer or broker, if any I like my local dealer- Mike Inmon of Inmon Yachts / Newport Boats. I didn't buy my boat from him, but he "gives back" and races (and wins!) in the local club in a faster standard 26D or C model. His son Jeff is extremely helpful with advice and my small parts needs.  
Other comments Great boat overall. Be prepared to do some customizing. You won't win many races, but when you're done, you'll have a nice, comfortable boat that's very flexible.  

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