Sunday, July 16, 2017

PDQ 32/34 Shoal Survivor--Sold

 Ready for a tropical vacation? Anchored just off Warrior's Rest, MD.

PDQ yachts are known for superior quality, durability, and ability in heavy going. Quality resins, synthetic cores, vacuum-bagged construction, and strategic use of carbon fiber result in light weight, strength, and freedom from delamination and blistering. Systems are well thought out, designed for easy maintenance, and carefully installed. Unlike the "price point” the boats they often compete with, these were built with years of bulletproof, reliable service in mind; if quality is important to you, this PDQ will make you happy.

The broad deck provides comfortable lounging, both  at anchor and underway. A custom bridle and 35-pound Manson Supreme anchor insure comfortable, secure nights. A Fortress FX-16 provides back-up.

The subject of nearly 100 articles in Practical Sailor and Good Old Boat Magazine, Shoal Survivor has been lovingly maintained and thoughtfully upgraded in many subtle ways to increase comfort,  reduce maintenance, increase reliability, and add to the "cruisability" of this great boat design.

This is was the first extended PDQ 32/34 Altair. Two extra feet of hull clean up the wake, improve performance, and smooth out the ride. A bottom step is now 32 inches wide, providing easy boarding and improved "play time" at anchor. Working with the tender and kayaks is more comfortable, swimming is more fun, and a comfortable transom shower makes for a pleasant end to a summer's day.

Shoal Survivor is simply the fastest, most thoughtfully tweaked PDQ32/34 out there. And she's ready to go anywhere, any time. No question about it.

For more information, please contact me using the Contact Form on the sidebar, or by e-mail at I will forward additional information and we can arrange for a viewing and inspection in Deale, MD.

(Note: items denoted with highlight and underline are links to more information. There are also over 360 posts in this blog, most of which detail up-grades and maintenance.) 

  • Builder: PDQ Yachts, Whitby, Ontario, Canada

  • LOA: 34 feet
  • LWL: 33 feet 4 inches
  • Beam: 16 feet
  • Weight: About 8,500 pounds
  • Draft: 3 feet, 3 inches. Keels have been faired and extended for improved windward pointing and speed.
  • Bridge Clearance: 49 feet
  • Bridge Deck Clearance: 40 inches (fwd) / 23 inches (aft)
  • Engines: Two 9.9 hp Yamaha retractable outboard motors (new August 2012). 4-cycle, high thrust, long shaft.
  • Morse MT-3 Controls (New March 2013)
  • Hours: approx. 175
  • Cruising Speed: 6.5 knots
  • Maximum speed 7.4 knots
  • Fuel: 27 gallons
  • Fresh Water: 47 gallons
  • Holding: 30 gallons
  • Two  10-pound propane tanks in factory-vented locker. Sensors in both hulls.

A simple touch screen gives access to all air conditioner functions.
Heating and Air conditioning:
  • Air Conditioning: Dometic Turbo 10,000 BTU air conditioner. Runs on 120V AC, pulls only 8 amps running. Can run on batteries for several hours.
  • Heat: Dickenson P9000 4,500 BTU propane fireplace with sealed flue.
  • Hot Water: Takagi T-K Jr. propane tankless hot water heater. Exterior vented, located in bulk-headed, isolated starboard bow compartment. 

Sail Area:
  • 507 sq. ft. with self-tacking jib
  • 645 sq. ft. with genoa
  • 847 sq. ft. with spinnaker
The squeezer (at top) makes setting by a single person easy. 
The large trampoline makes for easy drops.
 An adjustable tack bridle makes for perfect trim, from close reach to run.


Shoal Survivor’s interior is bright, airy and easy on the eyes. Fitted with the "classic" layout, she has two private cabins with queen-sized beds (standard linens), a roomy salon with 270˚ views, full galley, navigation station, and a head with shower. She sleeps up to 6 people with the use of twin flip-up convertible berths in the salon. The interior finish is fiberglass with all cabinetry in cherry veneers and solid cherry trim. Seating and berth surfaces are upholstered. Flooring is teak and holly throughout.
The trade-mark PDQ 32  slider opens the salon up like few other boats. The helmsman can speak to the loungers--no one is isolated, unless they chose to retreat to one of two private, queen-size cabins.

Vessel Walk-Through:
Entry from the cockpit is through a well-designed full-width sliding hatchway leading to the salon. The salon features a dinette with a solid cherry table with storage in the center. The table provides comfortable dining for six people and folds down if desired (rope tackle). The U-shaped settee surrounding the table is upholstered in dark blue striped Sunbrella removable cushions. Storage space is provided under each of the salon seats, with hinged tops with custom lift-out trays for smaller items. A swing-down television and DVD player provide evening entertainment.

Broad windows and a skylight provide an unobstructed view from the helm. All zip-out, if desired in fair weather.
Enclosure new in 2011

The aft sections of both hulls contain mirror image private cabins with queen-size athwartship berths. The berths use standard queen-size double bedding with 3-inch high density foam mattresses with toppers. Each sleeping cabin has a hanging locker, cupboards, storage bins and six opening hatches to provide excellent ventilation. A huge storage area is available under each bunk to stow sails and cruising paraphernalia. The lids are hinged, with props, to allow easy access without un-making the bed.

Twin aft cabins (port and starboard) feature a queen-size bed (standard size linens), numerous small cabinets, and a small hanging closet. A fan and six opening hatches keep the air moving. There is a cavernous locker under the bed.

The remainder of the port hull is devoted to the galley, including a propane refrigerator, microwave, 2-burner propane stove, and numerous cabinets.

The amidships section of the starboard hull contains the navigation station. A large inset shelf provides ample chart and small part storage. The main electrical panel hinges down for easy access. Air conditioning, heating, inverter, and stereo controls are also located in this area. The opposing wall contains cabinets, a bench seat, and a hanging locker.

The forward section of the starboard hull contains the private head. Equipment includes a Jabsco manual head, shower with hot and cold pressurized water, sump pump and sink, and exhaust vent fan. There is also a mirror, towel racks and two cherry storage cabinets.

There's nothing like fresh crabs and cockpit dining. Parks Marina, Tangier Island.

The hard top makes for good times even with afternoon rain. No need to button up the companionway door or slider.

 Galley Equipment:                                                                                    Dedicated propane locker.

  • LPG propane system. 2 x 10-pound tanks in a vented deck locker. Solenoid interlock system and Fireboy Xintec s-2A gas detectors in both hulls.
  • Seaward two-burner propane stove.
  • Polished stainless steel double sink.
  • Built-in NSF 53 water filtration system removes cysts and greater than 99% of bacteria. Water is also pre-filtered before filling, and the vent is screened. (This post describes prudent and established water filtration practice)
  • Dometic 3.0 cu. ft. propane refrigerator.
  • Plentiful storage in cherry cabinets.
  • A flip-down cutting board and drop-in extension extend usable area. Custom fiberglass countertop guards.
  • Custom cherry slide-out spice rack.
  • Microwave oven.
  • 120 volt outlets.
  • 12 volt fan.
  • Bilges in both hulls are dry and provide excellent storage for bottles and cans.

Design and Construction:
  • Vacuum-bagged composite construction
  • Vinylester resin skin over hand-laid tri-axial knit fiberglass fabric with high-tensile marine resin and Klegecell foam core.
  • Hulls are solid below the waterline.
  • Low aspect fin keels have sacrificial sections to deflect much of an impact away from the main structure of the boat.
  • PCA Gold two-year anti-fouling paint (will re-paint during inspection haul-out).
  • Seldon 39’ aluminum mast (masthead rig.
  • One forestay, two cap shrouds, one set of diamond shrouds; all stays are 1×19 stainless steel wire with swaged terminals and turnbuckles.
  • Lazy jacks.
  • Raymarine ST60 masthead instruments plus Windex indicator.
  • Twin Lewmar 40 2-speed winches at mast.
  • Flag halyard on starboard spreader.
  • Spinnaker halyard and rigging
  • Topping lift.
  • Extra halyard sheave and outlet available.
  • Hood Seafurl 800 furling gear (re-build with upgraded bearings 2009).
  • Main: Mack Sails full-batten main (new 2014). 3 reefs.
 Lazyjacks (retracted) make sail handling a breeze.
  •  Blue Sunbrella main sail cover.
  • 150% Genoa: Quantum, 2006, with UV leach protection replace 2013.
Inside sheeting track allows optimum genoa trim to windward--only PDQ32 with this feature.

  • Self-tacking jib: 1997 with UV leach protection. Seldom used and stored in air conditioned room.
  • Spinnaker, 2006. Red, White and Blue Asymmetrical Spinnaker with adjustable bow bridle.
  • Four self-tailing 2-speed cockpit winches (two Harken 32s, and two Lewmar 40s).
Under Genoa, 7 knots. The value of good bridge deck clearance is clear.
Under Genoa, 7 knots. The value of good bridge deck clearance is clear.

Under spinnaker, 7 knots. Smooth.

Hull and Deck Equipment:                                                                          Big under-bunk lockers!

  • Vinyl-dipped Dacron trampoline, very secure and comfortable.
  • Deck cleats (6): one on each bow, one on each transom and one each side of amidships.
  • Bow fairleads: one on each bow on inboard side for chafe-free mooring.
  • Transom fairleads:  custom line deflectors guide mooring lines under dinghy.
  • Large deck lockers in each bow for storage of anchoring paraphernalia and misc items.
  • Large stern lockers for boat gear and cleaning supplies.
  • Lewmar and Beckson opening hatches: (21).
  • Swim shower on starboard stern steps
  • Manson Supreme primary anchor (35 lb.) with 100 feet of  1/4-inch G43 chain and 150 feet of  1/2-inch nylon rode, stainless anchor roller with hawse pipe (starboard).
  • Lewmar V700 electric windlass (2013) on Port for primary anchor. Controls at helm for single-handed anchoring. Foot controls at bow.
  • Fortress FX-16 secondary anchor with chain and nylon rode. Stored in transom locker for easy deployment in dual-anchor situations.
  • Two custom anchor bridles with locking chain hooks.
A center cockpit is secure in all weather, rain or shine.

Jacklines make moving on deck safe in all weather.
  • Harken 8-foot mainsail traveler with 3:1 Harken controls.
  • 6-spoke Whitlock steering wheel.
  • Padded helm seat.
  • Fan at helm.
  • New cockpit canvas, 2012.
  • Hardtop Bimini including two LED light and 2 x 85 watt solar panel array.
  • Canvas sheet and storage bags (2).
  • Removable cedar cockpit sole.
  • Winch handle pockets (2).
  • Winch handles (3).
  • Numerous dock lines (various lengths).
  • Numerous fenders (various sizes) and fender board
  • Swim ladder on starboard stern.
  • Transoms stretched 2 feet in 2014 to provide improved boarding and speed.

With hull extensions, 7.5 knots. a nice smooth wake.

Looking from port cabin, forward into galley. The hanging locker is on the left, near the door.

Cabins: Two identical aft cabins are equipped as follows:
  • Queen-size bed (uses standard queen-sized linens).
  • Small hanging closet.
  • Numerous small cabinets.
  • Reading lights.
  • Fan.

  • Two Caframo Bora fans.
  • DVD player and fold-down TV screen with Bose speakers.
  • Table seats six. Storage in center of table.
  • Flip-up leaves create two twin berths.
  • Storage under seats, including removable storage trays.
  • Screens and storm windows for all opening ports. Covers (canvas or fiberglass) for all windows.


Electrical system:

  • Three 12-volt 145 AH batteries (435 AH total), new August 2011.
  • 160W Solar Panel array (2 x 80 watts) on cockpit hardtop.
  • Morningstar Solar controller with current and voltage display.
  • Heart 2000W Inverter/Charger battery management system.
  • Full 120 volt AC/12 volt DC Paneltronics electrical panel.
  • Shore power cord, 50 ft.
  • 120V outlets: galley, head, salon, navigation station, and cabins.
  • Low-power fluorescent lighting in salon and hulls. LED lighting in cockpit.

Twin 85-watt rigid panels provide power at anchor.
  • Magellan FX 324 Color Map GPS Chart plotter at helm with charts for Caribbean and North America.
  • Raytheon Autopilot (compass course or wind direction).
  • Raytheon Tridata (speed, wind, depth, water temperature).
  • Standard Horizon VHF.
  • 4-inch Ritchie magnetic compass.
  • Sony Radio/CD player with 2 speakers.
  • Flat screen TV (swing-away mounting) with DVD player and Bose speakers.
Engines and Fuel System:
  • Supplemental Raycor filtration, each engine.
  • Silica gel vent filter reduces fuel evaporation and water absorption, increasing engine reliability.
  • Lifeguard vent trap prevents vent over flows.

  • Mercury 3.5 HP 2-stroke engine will built-in fuel tank. Portable 1.5 gallon tank.
  • 9-foot, 2-inch BoatUS inflatable. Hypalon with hard floor, 2002. Includes composite seat, paddles, anchor, and air pump. New floor 2012, refurbished 2017.
  • Dinghy davits with upgraded 6:1 rigging, plus tricing lines and aluminum spreader bar. Two kayaks are easily carried on top of davits. 
  • Anchor (stainless steel Mantus Dinghy) and rode.
A dinghy and two kayaks are no problem at all. Even with full tanks, the transoms are still out of the water. The boarding platforms and ladder (starboard) make for easy access to all of your water toys. Swim platform shower (door on starboard transom) is great for washing off the salt. (there is also a hot water shower in the head compartment).

Extended transoms make for comfortable boarding of the tenders and kayaks. Great for passengers with mobility limitations and fun for the kids.

Safety Equipment:
  • Whale bilge pumps (2); shower gulper pump.
  • Life Sling with rail-mounted soft case.
  • Full jacklines and dedicated hard points for safety tethers.
  • Signal horn, flares, etc.
  • Six life jackets.
  • Two fire extinguishers.
  • Lifelines with six gates and stanchions surround the deck.
  • Magma barbecue grill with on rail attachment and Sunbrella cover.
  • Mesh slider mosquito screen.
  • Cleaning supplies: bucket, mops, deck brushes.
  • Numerous miscellaneous spare parts.
  • Gasoline jerry cans (5-gallon and 1.5-gallon for tender).
  • Bike rack for transom rail. Carries standard bikes.
  • Trolling equipment (fishing), including several Cuban yo-yos and removable mini-outriggers. 

Why is she for sale? I wish she wasn't. But I've been sailing for over 30 years and it's time for something different.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Best 100--Chapter 7

This will be a weekly feature for the next five months. I figure a goal will keep the pressure on.

I think of this as an adjunct to my book "Keeping a Cruising Book for Peanuts," although certainly there is some overlap. I've tested a lot of stuff. Many of these items were mentioned in some prior post--use the search function to find more information.

While you're at it, subscribe to Practical Sailor Magazine. The product descriptions are better, there are comparisons and options, and the test methods are explained. They research stuff I avoid, like electronics. One good find--or bad purchase avoided--and it'll be the smartest $39.94 you'll ever spend.


Properly selected, these magic fluids prevent corrosion, wear, and keep things moving. small wonder, and a shame, that whales were hunted nearly to extinction, in part in the quest for lubricants for the dawn of the industrial revolution. Today the local chandlery is bursting with magic lubes with all manner of claims. Fortunately, there are only a few you actually need.

Here I am lubing a DIY invention--a mast track cleaner that can be inserted and hauled up and  down the track without accessing the mast gate. Pretty tricky. A future post, perhaps. McLube Sailkote is the lube of choice. Lasts all season, with a few touch-ups on the slugs from time to time.

36. McLube Sailkote. Struggling to hoist sails is a disincentive sailing. There are many things that can make it more difficult than it needs to be. A bent foil or track, sticky sheaves, worn sliders, a dirty track (in the picture above, I cleaned the track before lubing it it), or added friction from leading the halyards back to the cockpit can all contribute. The first step is to clean the track and make certain it is free of gummy lubes and mud dauber nest remnants. Even a good coating of dust hurts. I just finished an article on track cleaners. Then apply something slick. The ideal lubricant will last a long time, never build-up or attract dirt, and can be spread vertically without climbing the mast. McLube Sailkote is a dry lubricant that will stay in place for a year in most applications. Though I don't use it on everything, I do use it on the sail tracks, genoa luff tapes, mainsail slugs, the traveler car, and the companionway slider (used traveler cars). Other common uses include:
  • All blocks.
  • Furler lines (reduces over-rides). I use Nikwax Polar Proof, to similar effect.
  • Telltales (keeps them flying, particularly when wet).
  • Zippers (but not dry-suits--they have special requirements.
37. PB Blaster. A weeks ago I realized the mount on one of my outboards had worked a little loose, but unsurprisingly, the bolts were seized tight. A few years of constant splashing in seawater will do that. So without getting frustrated, I blasted both sides of the bolt with PB Blaster and went to work on something else for an hour. When I returned, I was able to rock the bolt, using less force than I had applied unsuccessfully before. After about 30 seconds of rocking I was able to fully unwind the bolt, grease up with Green Grease (which I forgot to do when installing it--stupid) and re-tighten properly. This stuff has saved my bacon many times, most spectacularly when aluminum is involved. Given time to work, it nearly always does the trick.

38. Green Grease. Not just any grease that is green, but a specific synthetic grease from Omni Lubricants that I have subjected to rigorous laboratory and field testing. Simply the best wash-off and corrosion protection you can buy. Also excellent extreme pressure performance, making it good for winches. Advance Auto Parts carries it. I use it for:
  • Winches. Beat manufacture products in side-by-side testing.
  • Battery cables.
  • Shift cables.
  • Anti-seize on bolts. I think Tef Gel is better, just barely.
  • Trailer wheel bearings and couplers.
  • Seacocks. Unless I need something thicker to prevent leaks.

39. Lanicote, Forespar. If I need something a little thicker than Green Grease, perhaps for a turnbuckle or worn seacock (it will make them very stiff in the winter--sorry), this is the go-to product. Also excellent for:
  • Battery cables
  • Anti-seize
But I would not use it for technical lubrication, such as winches or  bearings. It also has poor high temperature and extreme pressure properties. An odd down side (and a good sign, actually) is that it is tough to wash off your hands.

40. Motor Oil.  Not a specific brand. There is way too much unsubstantiated opinion flying around. Additionally, unlike many products, there are strict standards, developed at a cost of millions of dollars by ASTM and API members. Products that meet these standards work. What is important is using a product that meets the correct standard.

     Two-Stroke Outboards. TC-W3 is the standard of choice. Do NOT use your favorite motorcycle oil. Enthusiast will speak of the terrific high temperature properties of their favorite, but motor cycles are air cooled and run hotter. There have been many cases of fouling and rings sticking attributed to motor cycle 2-stroke oils. On the other hand, corrosion is the bogey man of outboards. Marine oils are formulated for the cooler temperatures and moisture (even salt) exposure of water-cooled out-boards.

     Four-Stroke Engines (In-board or Out-board). FC-W is the standard of choice here. Again, it has been formulated for increased corrosion resistance. Is a good quality automotive oil as good? The folks that run the tests tell me that most probably will pass, but that the manufacturers don't submit all oils for testing. The most important thing is to change at the rated hours, or every fall at a minimum. Look at the oil and make sure it is not milky or brown, sure evidence that there is water or coolant in the oil. There are also one-drop-on-blotter paper tests that give some good hints. I did and article on these (as well as a DIY version based on cover weight paper) for Practical Sailor a few years ago.


I also keep a few specialty products around, just because I have them. Tefgel is good for anti-seize where very high temperatures (not for cylinder heads) are not involved. Overpriced, but it goes a long, long way. Teflon pipe dope is  a good alternative anti-seize when Tef Gel is not at hand. K-Y is just the thing for lubing hoses for lubing head hoses and water pumps seals for installation (grease will damage water and sanitary hoses).

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Slow Leak in Your Tender?

One possibility is a bad valve. Often, they look horribly sunburned on the outside. However, because the critical parts are inside, completely protected from  UV, most often a good cleaning is all they really need. Fortunately, they are dead simple to service or replace.

  1.  Deflate the tender.
  2. Grab the inside portion of the valve by squeezing the deflated tube around it. Turn the top counterclockwise using either a valve-specific tool, or a large pair of channel locks or a pipe wrench. They are entirely plastic, so I have never come across one that was stuck. They do not break easily.
  3. Remove the top half and give it a good scrubbing with a tooth brush. The sealing surface should be your focus. Lube the sealing surfaces and the outside o-ring very lightly with synthetic or silicon grease.
  4. Give the top surface of the inflatable fabric a good scrubbing.
  5. Re-install by reversing the process.
  6. Give the plug a good scrubbing. Remove the gasket and get both sides. Even if the gasket appears crusty, it's probably just an accumulation of salt and algae. Scrub it up.  If the keeper string is shot, replace it with whipping twine.

You can lubricate the valve in-place with a few drops of glycerin.

Replacement valves are about $15. You will still need to remove the old valve and clean up the fabric.. You can send a picture to Defender Marine if you are not sure, but if the hole in the fabric is about the same size, many are interchangeable. There is probably no need to remove the inside half--it just a threaded holder, never sees sun, and would probably last 50 years. They can be a little tricky to force through old fabric (might tear).


A parting thought. As I rehab my inflatable for the second time (the first time included paint and a new floor), I find myself amazed by the durability of Hypalon. As the PVC accessories (rub rail and oar locks) crack, the Hypalon remains like new. One one major wear prevention step was the installation of large chafe pads on the inside, where the lifting bridle rubs on the tubes. It has two layers of reinforced rubber, so that when one wears through I can replace it without any risk to the tubes. I wonder if all new dinghies should be fitted with patches everywhere they rub on the davits or transom, much like genoas are fitted with spreader patches by the sailmaker. Of course, this will be a DIY job, since it's hard to say where they should be. Polyurethane caulk works well, as does contact cement--Hypalon cement (a durable, 2-part contact cement) is overkill for holding a wear patch in place.