I went to the Long Beach boat show this weekend to visit with the Latitudes & Attitudes gang and join the Saturday night party but while there, I took the opportunity to browse the docks. The usual suspects were there – Catalina, Hunter, Junneau, Beneteau and Tom Schock with the Harbor 20 and the Harbor 25. (He tells me the 30 is due out any day now and I’ll get one of the first sails.)
Representatives with Dufour were on hand as well with three models, 485, 525 and 405. Although they were dock bound so I couldn’t sail one, these boats, with their low profiles and plumb bows looked sleek and fast.
It was a nice surprise then to find a couple of unique little storage ideas too. The 405, with its twin helms and large cockpit was pretty. It has good clear decks so it’s easy to get around but they kept the lifelines low to keep the profile low and they’re just enough to trip you and ease your way overboard. Down below, like the other Dufours, it’s all Euro chic design and lots of angles. Thinking I was checking out the batteries, I lifted one of the floorboard panels. And guess what I found. Yup, a built in wine cellar. Turns out the batteries were much less accessible, but hey, what will you look for more often?
The 525, which is enormous both on deck and below, had its own clever storage compartment in the form of a garage in the transom. Much like the Jeanneau 57 dinghy garage, the Dufour 52 has its own place for toys, but it’s not quite large enough for a dinghy.
It’s not super high tech sailing rock star tricks, but these are some nice features and I’m glad to see more and more clever uses of space on sailboats.