Boat Reviews By Owners
1974 -- 28' 5" IRWIN
Cockpit: Large cabin - split somewhat awkwardly by aft traveler. Good drainage, and visibility for the 6'+ individual. Seat backs uncomfortable (requiring cushions), and hatch boards go to cockpit floor - making water in cockpit scary.
Cabin: The cabin is very roomy, and my family of 5 have no problem spending the occasional weekend on the boat. Although the roominess is at the expense of storage, a few modifications can gain lots of storage. Head is very small and cramped.
Construction: Surprising well built hull. Thick fiberglass, no blisters, good bulkhead tabbing (at least on mine), no deck to hull leaks, slightly oversized rigging. They did cut corners when it came to sea cocks and through hulls - all plastic gate valves. None of the deck hardware has secure backing, week and poorly installed port lights, thin acrylic hatches, and the stanchions are less then optimal.
Handling: Our full keel version sails beautifully in thick and thin weather! Faster then many of her younger sisters. Motors well forward, but you have to plan for prop wash and zero maneuverability when reversing.
Engine Room: The atomic 4 wasn't running when I purchased her, so I installed an outboard bracket and a 7.5hp Honda. This was slightly underpowered for this heavy boat, but after a carb rebuild on my atomic 4 - it was no longer needed. The A4 (although it scares me with the occasional knocking and low oil pressure) has been great!
General Comments: We use Blew Bayou primarily to keep us out on the water on weekend daysails - as my wife is not ready to do much more until our baby is a little older. Although we plan to sail to Corpus Christi in the fall, there are several modifications that I would perform before any serious offshore sailing. Examples: Bolt thicker port lights (or storm windows), replace gate valve sea cocks with sturdy ball valve type, add additional chain plates for lower shrouds, raise hatch-boards from floor level in cockpit, shorten cockpit floor area (by adding lazerette or forward locker, water tight engine controls, spray hood, replace thin lexan hatches, add interior grab rails
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Date Submitted: 2010-07-07
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