Cape George Yachts, founded by New Zealander Cecil Lange in 1974, is known for building beautiful hand crafted classics and Manuhuka is one of, if not THE, finest examples extant.
Inspired by the traditional designs of William Atkins from the 1930 and 40s, the Cape George 36 was adapted for fiberglass by Ed Monk, and this particular example was built with the intent of being Lange's own personal boat; note that, while the vast majority (about 75%) of Cape George 36s were sold as kit boats, Manuhuka is yard-finished and it shows in the superb craftsmanship of her interior joinery which is finished out in classic Herreschoff fashion.
Manuhuka lived up in the Pacific Northwest until late summer of 2017; she's had only two owners since new, both maintained her meticulously and she shows bristol today. Note that in 2007 she was taken back to the Cape George yard for a major refit, which included all new deck bulwarks and toerail (the bulwarks proved problematic as originally designed; the retrofit costs about $30,000 but once it's done it's DONE!), installation of a bow thruster, painted from the bulwarks up, and numerous other upgrades. Then in 2014 the current owner undertook another major (over $60,000 major!) refit which included major rigging, mechanical and hull work.
The design has a long keel with short overhang resulting in a relatively long waterline, offering high average speeds and a very sea-kindly motion; the boat also has a deep cross section which offers excellent load carry ability as well as also helping with the motion in a seaway. The net result is a very strong vessel with excellent performance under sail or power even when heavily laden.
Not surprisingly, Cape George is called out in Ferenc Mate's highly regarded book "Best Boats to Buy or Build: "With incredibly strong fiberglass hulls and traditionally built deck and house, these superbly crafted and capable offshore cruisers are a wonderful blend of classic and modern. Atkinized hulls have exceptional speed and ability despite a very generous displacement and modest spread of sail."
Also note that the Cape George 36 is specifically reviewed in Bluewater Boats, see copy of that article by clicking FULL SPECS above (you can also access the owner's interesting and informative website dedicated to Manuhuka by clicking the appropriate link, also under FULL SPECS).
Bottom line is that the Cape George 36 is a beautiful and capable offshore cruiser that is equally at home as a day sailer in typically boisterous Bay conditions; Manuhuka has to be one of the finest examples of the design that you're ever going to see and should be considered a must-see for anyone in the market for such a vessel.
Vessel lying in a WONDERFUL Sausalito slip a stone's throw from charming little waterfront restaurant and the local beach, and potentially transferable, all in all a very nice opportunity if you're able to take advantage!
V berth with insert along with set of drawers, hanging locker and head comprising an "owner's suite" forward, step aft to salon with straight settee port , L shaped settee starboard. Continue aft to large stand up nav table and quarter berth port side, centerline companionway the J shaped galley starboard.
Note beautiful solid teak joinery and solid teak & holly sole, all flawless. 6'2 headroom.
Stainless steel double sink with hot/cold pressure water (seven gallon hot water heater, AC and engine fired) with one-touch designer faucet with Ametek cartridge pre filter for all water and Dalton ceramic filter for drinking water, heavily insulated icebox with Technautics Coastal 12V holding plate refrigeration (air cooled compressor with built in option of adding water cooling), Force 10 three burner pressurized kerosene gimballed stove with oven, small built in microwave. Nature's Head composting toilet (2014).
110V AC / 12V DC. Thirty amp shorepower service with Guest 2433 galvanic isolator, Heart EMS 1800 watt inverter/65 amp charger with remote panel, Ample Power programmable voltage regulator, Ample Power 155 amp dual belt drive alternator. House bank composed of four 6V American Battery 1800 Extreme Capacity golf cart batteries (new in 2012, 416 total amp hours), dedicated engine start battery (new in 2012, gel cel) on dedicated shelf custom fabricated and installed (2014).
All Raymarine electronics new in 2014: EV-100 P70 TillerPilot (this is the heaviest tiller pilot available), i50 Tri Data with bronze transducers, i60 Wind System, Raymarine SeaTalk backbone, plus Icom IC-MO6 VHF radio with cockpit remote mic and Shakespeare masthead antenna (also 2014).
Aluminum keel stepped mast with folding steps, spinnaker pole track and new standing rigging (including wire, terminals, turnbuckles and bobstay whisker stays) in 2014 (at which time mast was of course pulled, checked top to bottom and rewired then reinstalled with a new aluminum custom mast step), Neil Pryde mainsail on aluminum boom with vang. North Sails 120% furling jib on Harken MK IV roller furler (both new in 2016).
Two Cathay Industries #26 stainless steel self tailing winches, two Cathay Industries #24 stainless steel self tailing winches, two Barient #21 self tailing winches, two Cathay Industries #16 winches.
Heavily laid up solid FRP full keel hull (1/2" layup increasing to 1" at the keel, 1/8" gelcoat) with 1/2" PVC insulation foam bonded to interior of hull then overlaid with fiberglass, encapsulated lead ballast and teak over marine plywood decks, external transom-hung rudder with tiller steering.
Note vessel has had two major refits at the Cape George yard (in 2014 and 2007) including renewing brightwork and a beautifully redesigned and rebuilt lazerette locker hatch cover (2014) and the "bulwarks job", the cabintop painted, a very nice heavy duty offshore dodger installed and a new bow sprit constructed and installed (2007).
Bottom stripped in 2014, any blisters attended to (ground out and filled with vinylester filler) then bottom primed and painted, new bronze bobstay fitting fabricated and installed.
Cape George Marine Works is one of the premier yards on the entire west coast.
45 lb. CQR anchor on stainless steel double bar anchor pulpit with 120' 3/8" galvanized Triple B chain anchor rode and 150' of nylon braid rode, beautiful heavy duty polished stainless steel anchor windlass and Groco deck wash pump. Four mooring cleats and Sampson post, heavy duty polished stainless steel stanchions with double stainless steel lifelines (2014, including all terminals, gates and pelican hooks), polished stainless steel outboard motor post, nice telescopic stainless steel reboarding ladder on genoa track starboard amidship.
Flex mounted fresh water cooled four cylinder Mercedes-Benz/Nanni diesel engine with single Morse tranny/throttle control. New exhaust elbow and heat exchanger (including a new aluminum housing), all new cooling system hoses and full service completed in 2014, at which time a new Hurth transmission and flex plate was also installed. Excellent engine access both from below and via large watertight commercial grade "fisherman's hatch" installed (2014) in cockpit sole (with very nice custom teak grate over).
Lewmar 185TT 6kW 12V electric bow thruster installed in 2007, Groco Safety Seacock (which allows engine to pump water out of bilge) installed in 2014 along with all new Groco bronze seacocks throughout (except the cockpit floor drains because the Grocos wouldn't fit) and all unused seacocks removed and glassed over.
For those who love the traditional look, seaworthiness and the great all-round sailing ability of a Bristol Channel Cutter but needing something larger, the Cape George 36 may be a great choice. These well loved boats, based on the time-tested design principles from the work of the late William Atkin, are solid, well behaved, comfortable and fast.
The Cape George 36 was the brainchild of Cecil Lange, a Kiwi who had an outstanding reputation as a boat builder. With the help of designer Ed Monk, the 36 is a 1970s fibreglass adaptation of Atkin’s 1930s Tally Ho Major, a traditional cutter with great all-round sailing manners and a healthy dose of speed. Today Cape George have derived four other siblings from the same design and they garner a loyal following from owners, with the boatyard earning a name as the place to go for repairs and refits.
Many are captured by her looks, with high bulwarks and broad decks, a low elegant house and spacious safe cockpit, a gentle sheer and wineglass transom, and a massive aft hung rudder, rare to see on an Atkins design, but a favourite for their simplicity and ease of maintenance.
As to be expected from a boat of this era, her lines are conservative. She has a full length keel without any forefoot cutaway that were popular development in the second half of the 20th century, this gives her excellent directional stability, great self-steering manners, and predictable seagoing handling in all sea conditions. Reminiscent of traditional pilot boats, the hull has short overhangs and a long waterline, which extend her hull speed, while her deep wineglass sections endow her with an easy seakindly motion that owners love, not to mention a very useful load carrying ability.
Fully ladened for cruising, these boats are well into the heavy displacement category, yet with a healthy sail area to displacement ratio, the Cape George 36 is remarkably fast, they sail well in light air and are in their element when the wind pipes up.
The Cape George yard is located in the small seaside town of Port Townsend, WA, just south of the US-Canadian border, and was established in 1974 by Cecil Lange, a New Zealand native.
Lange had gained an appreciation for the work of William Atkin, US designer of traditional sailing yachts in the 1930s and 40s. Of particular interest to Lange was a wooden cutter named African Star; based on the Atkin 34, she was winning a lot of races in the Puget Sound area.
Lange commissioned designer Ed Monk to adapt the design for fiberglass construction, thereby birthing the Cape George 36. Over the intervening years, Cape George have evolved other designs based on the 36, including 31, 34, 38 & 40 foot cutters.
Back in the day when the boats were in full production, if you were to drop in on Lange’s yard you would see owners living in motorhomes as they built their boats among the company of others doing the same with the factory right at their doorstep.
Lange retired in 2000, and the small boatyard he established remained quiet until 2004 when Todd Uecker, who had previously worked for Lange for 10 years through the 1990s, and his brother Tim bought the yard and began production again as its new owners, along the way renaming the yard to Cape George Marine Works. In the intervening years they have acquired the Sam Morse line of Lyle Hess designs – the twenty eight foot Bristol Channel Cutter and twenty two foot Falmouth Cutter
The boats were offered at various stages of completion from a bare hull to a complete yacht. Thus examples on the market today can vary widely in quality of build and internal layout. Many were were home-built and the factory complete boats were semi-custom in nature. Each and every Cape George 36 should be looked upon as a one-off, including factory-built examples.
Lange mentions he had concerns that some home-built versions were not as adequately ballasted as he would have liked. Inspect the teak on plywood decks closely, some boats have issues and rotten plywood can be hard to spot under teak.
A typical problem area was the wood-lined fiberglass bulwarks which was an easy ingress point for water. Typically, the wet bulwark swells, raising the teak caprail which then exacerbates the leakage problem. Over time, leaks can result in rot in both the deck and deck beams leading to expensive repairs. The design was superseded in the mid-1990s with solid fiberglass and later foam / fiberglass construction which solved the issue. Todd Uecker comments that a large part of their work today is in rebuilding and converting wood-lined bulwark boats to foam and fiberglass.