BOAT TEST HANSE 350
Get out on the water for a sail around the country and you will notice the swarm of 30-plus-footers. This easy-to-handle and popular length is enjoying a resurgence in tough times. LINDSAY WRIGHT talks to a couple swayed by the latest Hanse 350
"Marianne, my partner, and I went to the Hanse website and selected colour combinations on screen before we even ordered the boat," says David Davies-Payne, the owner of Wandering Hanse, a Hanse 350. "It's brilliant - the boat turned up exactly as we wanted her."
But dapper isn't the only way to describe the Hanse 350. Restful applies, too. Just a few minutes work on the mainsail halyard and jib sheet has the 6.4-tonne yacht gently bending to just under 12kts of wind.
"This is the first boat we've owned," David continues. "We'd previously chartered boats in various places. But a friend who does a lot of sailing said: 'You ought to have a look at a Hanse.' So we flew to Sydney for a test sail - and were sold straight away. We're still learning but this is a very generous boat ? she's utterly dependable. I think she makes us look like a lot better sailors than we really are."
David and Marianne chose the 350's two-cabin option with a spacious vee-berth forward, en suite access to the toilet and an equally roomy double quarter-berth cabin to starboard.
"But in reality, we have three cabins - the port quarter cabin is just as big and only needs a squab to make it habitable," says David. Another person could be accommodated on the saloon settee at a pinch.
They also opted for a three-cylinder 30hp 3YM 30 C Yanmar diesel with saildrive over the standard 21hp engine and the extra oomph drives the 9.6m waterline length yacht at about 7.5kts in flat water.
All of Hanse's eight models, from the natty 320 through to the flagship 630, are designed by Bremerhaven-based Judel/Vrolijk Yacht Design and Engineering. The 350 has a purposeful, modern hull form with an almost plumb stem and minimal overhangs. She carries the 3.55m beam well aft for buoyancy and maximum accommodation below decks.
The 350 has a 100mm flange on the inside of the hull and the deck moulding is joined to this flange with adhesive and mechanical fastenings. Bulkheads are firmly glassed in place with generous tabbing to spread the loads.
Stiffness isn't an issue for Wandering Hanse. With a self-tacking jib and about 1¾ turns lock-to-lock on the mechanical link steering, she easily answers to two fingers on the leather-bound steering wheel. It's easy, exhilarating sailing: reaching, running or hard on the wind. Point the wheel where you want to go and the boat follows ? a little mainsail trim and you're up to optimum boat speed.
It's almost impossible to load the helm up and the only indication that the boat might be getting stressed is the top-dead-centre mark on the wheel being about 35? to leeward. To windward, at an effortless 6.5kts, Wandering Hanse sails up to the eye of the wind, flips through and gathers way on the new tack, with minimal reduction in boat speed.
The Hanse 350 has a large spade rudder, almost half the size of the keel, mounted on a 50mm diameter aluminium rudder stock and this contributes to the boat's effortless tacking and deadeye maneuverability. She has 1845kgs of ballast in the cast iron T-bulb keel and stub, which gives her a draught of 1.85m. A 1.43m draught option with an extra 80kg in the bulb is also available.
The Isomat tapered spar reaches about 16.43m above the waterline and has two sets of swept-back spreaders. It's an 11/12 fractional rig with roller furling jib that self tacks on a sheet track across the cabin top. Total sail area is 62.86m2 with 32.23m2 of that in the mainsail. The adjustable backstay and generous mast pre-bend enable owners to get pretty adventurous with sail trim options and helps to explain the boats' club-racing reputation.
Wandering Hanse feels larger than the advertised 10.59m LOA (34ft7in) on deck, and the sense of space is even more apparent below decks. The 350's saloon seems huge, helped by the sunlight streaming through the five flush deck hatches.
A moulded subframe takes care of keel and rig loading below the cabin sole - what's left is all space. Starting forward, a double vee-berth has access to the portside head and deep hanging lockers to starboard.
A stainless steel compression post for the deck-stepped mast doubles as a convenient handhold in the saloon. There's a settee to starboard and a large mahogany veneered table to port.
All boats sold in the EU must comply with a stringent set of construction standards to earn a CE certificate and the Hanse 350 has the top A (Ocean) rating.
The galley's bench area has a deep fiddle, two sinks and a fridge box, driven by 12V compressor, in the corner. The sink covers double as extra bench space and cooking is on a gimbaled two-burner unit with oven. Freshwater comes from a plastic 260lt tank under the vee-berth forward.
Two deep-cycle house batteries supply the amps for interior lights and systems, with switches to enable either the house batteries or start battery to spin the Yanmar into action. A hot water tank under the port quarter berth works by offshore power or the engine.
The cabin sole is a natural wood finish. Each panel is securely screwed down and small flush hatches, with a suction cup extractor, provide access to the 25mm stainless steel keel bolts, the electric pump and the manual pump pickup in the bilge sump.
A full-width locker stretches across the stern with watertight access from inside and adds to <I>Wandering Hanse<I>'s formidable array of stowage space. Everywhere you look there's another drawer/cupboard/locker.
The big moulded binnacle comes with four drinkholders and is topped by a weatherproof nacelle for the chartplotter/sounder unit. Other instrumentation is set into the aft end of the cockpit coaming.
Below the helmsperson's feet, a removable panel gives instant access to the rudder stock and, in Wandering Hanse's case, the autopilot power head. Like most continental boats, the 350's set up for Mediterranean mooring and the walkthrough stern provides an easy step down to the wharf.
Specifications: Hanse 350
Priced from: $245,000 w/ sails and instruments
Length overall: 10.59m
Waterline length: 9.60m
Draught: 1.92m (standard)
Displacement: 6.36 tonnes
Engine: 30hp Yanmar
Holding tank: 30lt
Total sail area: 64.86m²
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Bayview Anchorage Marina,
1714 Pittwater Road,
Bayview, NSW, 2104
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