Stupid boatowner mistake (again).

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Stupid boatowner mistake (again).

Postby DanaDCole on Tue Mar 21, 2023 9:30 am

I built a Pocketship in 2013. Great little boat! But, like an idiot, I decided I wanted something a little bigger and after some research decided on the Malbec 18--great reviews, etc., etc. I even went to Oxnard to test one. Paid $30,000 for it. Have had nothing but trouble ever since. The big problem is that water keeps getting in. The factory owner even came here to Oklahoma from California to try to fix the leaks--mostly around the windows. His work helped some, but I have had more leaks since--pretty sure I have them all fixed now. The Malbec sails very nicely, but not as nicely as the Pocketship in my opinion, and it is very difficult to maneuver in close quarters, even with an outboard. The cabin is quite a bit roomier, you don't have to lie down to put on your pants and it sleeps 4 (if you all love each other), but in fact it is less comfortable. You don't have to sit on the floor, but the roof prevents you from getting comfortable on the seats. So, bottom line, keep your Pocketship! It's a wonderful little boat and I would give anything to have mine back. I'm going to try to sell the Malbec, but I doubt I can get much for it.
Posts: 497
Joined: Wed Sep 25, 2013 2:06 pm
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma

Re: Stupid boatowner mistake (again).

Postby slash2 on Tue Mar 21, 2023 9:02 pm

I’m sure you could sell it for enough to buy another Pocketship kit!

But seriously, Sorry the new boat isn’t working out. I’m on my third small lake boat in that many years. Granted, at a much smaller cost. It all leads to a better end .
Steve Sawtelle
Posts: 106
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2021 2:27 am

Re: Stupid boatowner mistake (again).

Postby rmp on Sat May 06, 2023 7:19 am

I have been fantasizing about a pocketship for some time. i hope I have the fortitude and time to tackle one soon

I also looked at the Malbec - went to California to try it out, and liked the way it sailed. Roomy, as you say. I have sailed a West Wight Potter 15 for quite a while, and had been looking for something that would perform better, but also not be any more trouble to rig and launch. I tried a Com-Pac Eclipse for a while, but had all kinds of trouble with it at boat ramps.

Your notes about pocket ship are encouraging. Have you ever been on a Potter? If so, can you compare them? I am also curious about the rigging and launching of Pocketship.

Also curious about where you sail in Oklahoma. I love travelling to lakes with my Potter.

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Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2021 8:42 pm

Re: Stupid boatowner mistake (again).

Postby Tom G on Sun May 07, 2023 1:17 am

I sailed a Potter 19 for several years and sold it to acquired an (already built) Pocketship. The P19 was a great sailing boat that felt very secure in pretty windy conditions. I sail single handed pretty much all the time. My primary reasons for selling P19 were: rigging for launch was slow and complicated, (mini stays, setting up a tackle for raising mast) so I seldom would just go out for a day sail. Launch to sail could go to an hour. The lifting keel : 300 + pounds, complex routing of cable and minimum mechanical advantage on winch meant hard to crank up, can't really sail it with the keel up to any degree so you have a pretty deep draft for a small boat but it did make the boat very stable. The keel trunk was a big intrusion into a cabin already made cramped by a lot of built in cabinet work that looked nifty but was in the way if you are 6'2". There many Happy Potter owners who will disagree with most of this but for me, Pocketship has been an improvement for how I use a sailboat.

The Pocketship fixed these issues; I really can launch in about 20-25 minutes. I haul with all rigging in place. I am fussy about keeping all the lines restrained during transport so when I stand up the mast all the sheets and lazy jacks and halyards are ready to go. I can easily run out for a half day sail when some nice conditions are available.
Shoal keel /CB is my favorite combination. With he lead in Bilge it, makes a stable and versatile package ( Like Monty 17 ). You can sail in shallow water with CB up and you have about 16" of draft and good stability. CB goes up and down with one hand. The cabin is great for sleeping and I can sit up easily although your feet are out flat (no inside footwell) . I have a sling chair that hangs from ceiling so you can get pretty comfortable for extended time at anchor. Pocketship sails great as well (although you need to keep in mind it is basically a dinghy with a cabin) the ballast seems to help a lot but you need to pay attention and reef appropriately in gusty conditions. ( the Potter was a lot heavier and was more forgiving in windy conditions). A good boom tent makes a big difference if you spend much time cruising allowing you to cook in companion way or on the bridge deck and sit outside in shade. I widened my cockpit foot well to accommodate my size 13 feet and am glad I did.
Anyway, for me the switch has worked great. Tom, PS Tortuga
Tom G
Posts: 13
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2018 2:25 pm

Re: Stupid boatowner mistake (again).

Postby rmp on Sun May 07, 2023 5:42 am


Thanks for the comparison. I get what you are saying about the sailing and rigging. Pocketship looks good on all fronts.

It is also an attractive project to build something myself, knowing that when I am done, I'll have something brand new. I am sure that I will spend much more time in the workshop than on the boat ramp! You have to enjoy building, not just sailing, to take one of these on.

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Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2021 8:42 pm

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