Macgregor Owner Reviews

Serving sailors online since 1997

Review of the Macgregor 26D by Dave Dickinson

Year built 1988  
Location of boat Lake Erie  
The boat is sailed on The Great Lakes  
How the boat is used Weekends and longer  
Normal wind strength 16-22 knots  
Average size of crew solo  
Liveaboard? No  
Owner bought the boat in 1988  
If the clock could be turned back, would owner buy again? Yes. When I bought it I thought it would be an interim boat. Due to business issues, an easy to sail, launch, haul and store boat seemed the best choice for me at the time. I ended up falling in love with it and can't imagine getting rid of it now.  
Gear that's been added Lines led aft, adjustable split backstay, adjustable outhaul, topping lift, cunningham, symmetrical and asymmetrical spinnakers, furler and genoa,anchor light, mast mounted VHF antenna, more efficient rudder, adjustable genoa turning blocks, jib track, three bilge pumps, deck waste pump out, inboard motor controller, depth, speed, compass, bimini, swim platform and ladder.  
Structural or complex improvements Many interior mods including a navigation station, AM/FM/Cassette/CD cabinet, galley improvements. Removeable anchor rode locker with deck pipe, lined lazarette and cooler compartment in V-berth. Competely re-wired.  
The boat's best features I bought the boat new and viewed it as a "blank canvas". The boat was very spartan, but provided the opportunity to customize it to my specific needs and wants. It is extremely easy to sail, launch, haul and tow. It is a very quick boat, great acceleration and a surprising hull speed. I love the water ballast even though it took some getting used to.  
Problem areas in terms of design, materials, maintenance, etc. The wiring is the least you could possibly get away with. Although the construction seems a little light, it has stood the test of time in some pretty rigorous conditions and uninhibited use. It appears to me that the things that need to be strong are and those that don't, aren't. I have not had to do any major repairs, other than to barrier coat the bottom.  
Sailing characterisitcs The stock rudder does not provide enough control. The boat tended to round up easily even with minimal mast rake. Extending the leading edge and the depth of the rudder vastly improved performance and handling. This boat is tender in rough water, but you get used to it; I should add that I have never been concerned about my safety in the boat, even in some very dramatic conditions. It has great acceleration and is very quick.  
Motoring characterisitcs I have a 9.9hp 2-stroke that pushes the boat to hull speed at around half throttle in choppy conditions.  
Liveability I am 6'5", so moving around in the cabin is a little clumsey for me. Other than that it is very roomy and with the interior mods I've made, very homey too.  
The owner's experience in dealing with Hunter (if any) Have never had the need to deal with the factory.  
The owner's experience with the boat dealer or broker, if any The dealer was great. Made me feel like the nurses did when my girls were born.  
Other comments I thought when I bought this boat that I would move up to a bigger one eventually. I have had many opportunities to get great deals on some really nice boats, in fact, a guy once offered to trade his Erwin 28 for mine, even up...I turned him down. This is a fun, easy to sail and durable boat and I would recommend it to anyone thinking of getting into this sport or contemplating downsizing.  

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