Hunter 260 purchase

Status
Not open for further replies.
Oct 10, 2010
251
Hunter H260 Gull Lake
I have an opportunity to buy a 260 Hunter. I have never been on one and I'm trying to get a good feel for the size of the cockpit/interior vs a Mac 26X. Are there any videos, old promotional videos floating around out there that I could see to help me decide. I really need a roomy boat to keep the wife happy on the water and it needs to be trailerable. From some pics the hunter looks much bigger than an Mac 26X. Any advice. I am a novice sailor not looking to race, simply looking to cruise.
 
Dec 12, 2010
12
shopping: Hunter 260? PNW
I've been looking at both, and the Hunter has a much larger cockpit and what feels like a roomier interior. Bathroom is nicer in the Hunter. It's a bigger boat to trailer though, and probably harder to launch, and of course doesn't have the big engine.

I was going to go with a MacX, but have now decided a Hunter 260 would be a nicer boat, at least for my needs. It's a tough choice, weighing all the different options, but seeing them in person convinced me.

If you can, try to see both in person. Good luck!
 
Dec 19, 2006
5,733
Hunter 36 Punta Gorda
Boat Reviews

Try the boat reviews here should be plenty of info here and past info search here also.
In 2000 I almost purchased a 260 after sailing on one and researching it and the Mac,I think the Hunter is a better sailboat but that's me.
The only reason we did not buy it was my wife did not want to trailer any more and wanted bigger and she fell in love with a Hunter 290 and we loved it for sure but than she wanted bigger so we now own a Hunter 36 and also love it,the 260 is a very niice sailboat for sure.
Nick
 
Apr 18, 2008
77
O'Day 34 Fairfield Harbour, NC
Three years ago I thougt about a Mac 26. But when I went aboard a Hunter 26, I was blown away by the spaciousness of the interior. Real room to move around, and a descent size head (momma likes it). All the women from O'Days and Catalinas marvel at the space below. I love the big boat feel, and continue to learn her little tricks for sailing. I don't consider it a day sailor if you have to rig and tear down each day. I keep mine moored, but if you have a place to keep it rigged on the trailer and then launch, it would work fine.
For cruising, the queen size berth under the cockpit is a treat. Just a little hard to crawl in and out of. Some 260s have the capability of dropping the table to make one big berth in the cabin. Check the archives for mods that have been done. There are slight differences between the 26 and the 260. Tiller verses wheel steering is the biggest. The 260 entranceway is offset a bit as well. Everything is a compromise, but I've learned to live with them and really love my boat.
 
Oct 10, 2010
251
Hunter H260 Gull Lake
Good stuff guys. I will be moored throughout the year and I'll go on one or two, week trips per year. It sounds like the Hunter is more difficult to set up for sailing and a little trickier to launch. It also sounds like it is much roomier than an X. Is the rear berth easier to access that the rear berth in the MacX? I was a little dissapointed in the rear berth of the X.

I have seen the odd comment about the sailing characteristics of the 260. As a novice sailer I'm still trying to assess what all that means. Apparently the 260 is not good in strong winds. I read a couple of 'reef early' posts. Are these sailing characteristics something that I should be concerned about? My sailing will be on inland lakes and for me its all about a liesurely time on the water with my wife, some friends or alone. I will not be racing.

There seems to be a lot of info, videos etc on the Mac's but not so much on the 260. Should that worry me? I'm thinking resale, parts etc... Are the 260's still in production and generally what is the market like for theses boats?


Shanker
 
Jan 24, 2008
293
Alerion Express 28 Oneida Lake, NY
Shanker...

We had a 2001 h260 and my Wife wishes we still had her.

Can't make any comparisons to the Mac, but the comments others have made about cabin and cockpit space are accurate.

As for sailing, she was tender, no question about it. A really great performer in light air. The comments you've heard about reefing early are also very accurate. We also daysail on an inland lake and are not racers. All boats are compromises. The space in the h260 and dry sailing characteristics are partially a result of the high free board, which makes her somewhat difficult to handle in tight marinas with crosswinds.

HAPPY NEW YEAR and best of luck with whatever you choose.

Paul
 
Apr 18, 2008
77
O'Day 34 Fairfield Harbour, NC
The 26/260 llikes to sail flat. They have literally a ton of water ballast below the cabin sole, but it doesn't really kick in till about 10 degees of list, or so. The boat is initally tender, but then settles down. With a fractional rig, the main is the big driver, not the jib. I added roller furling to my jib as I often single hand, and find it very convenient. I also have all the reefing lines for the main coming back to the cockpit. At 59, I don't like dancing on the cabin to reef. The first reef of the main is at 6 feet, and is very effective. On very windy day, I will sail with the main reefed, and the jib furled. Does a fine job as long as you are not in too big a hurry to get anywhere up wind. Rolling out just enough jib for a storm jib helps too. The spacious cabin with a raised deck and high freeboard can make docking in a crosswind an experience, but its doable with a little practice. You must remember that it is a heavy boat with 4700lbs displacement, without gear. Lots of inertia to contend with. I think that is a positive thing, especially when tacking in choppy water.
 

MrEd

.
Jun 5, 2004
65
Hunter 240 Louisville, KY/ Patoka Lake,IN
Both of the boats you're considering could work out well. I have a slighly smaller, Hunter 240. A few seasons ago, there was a Mac in the adjacent slip. The cockpit of the 240 was actually larger that the Mac. The differences inside are probably just a matter of taste.
I think both manufacturers turn out nice, easy to have fun with, boats. There are always comments about the Hunter 240 and 260's being a little tender in a brisk wind. Maybe a bit, but don't worry. As you learn to handle it properly, it will be fun. Good luck.
 
Dec 12, 2010
12
shopping: Hunter 260? PNW
shanker, the rear berth is not as easy to access in the Hunter 260 as it is in the Mac26X, mainly because the head blocks the port side. There is a small vent and light hatch on the starboard side of the rear birth, but in terms of sleeping there, it would probably be claustrophobic for most.

The nice thing about Mac 26X's is that there are so many of them, and tons of third party folks still making parts and accessories for them. (Blue Water Yachts, for instance) Not sure how the Hunter 260 aftermarket is.
 
Oct 10, 2010
251
Hunter H260 Gull Lake
tender?

OK, as a newbie sailer I'm not sure what tender actually means. Seeing that MacX and H260 are ballast boats does that mean they are both tender?
 
Dec 12, 2010
12
shopping: Hunter 260? PNW
I believe it means when the boats are at sail, they will quickly lean to 10 or 15 degrees, then, from that point on, stop being so "tender" or quick to lean as the counterweight of the water ballast kicks in.
 
May 16, 2007
1,509
Boatless ! 26 Ottawa, Ontario
I owned a Mac 26S for a number of years and a Hunter 260 for the past two years. I have done extended cruises on both boats. Did trailering trips of over 1600 miles with each of them. The Hunter is wide and heavier but trailers better than the Mac. I found the Hunter was better built and had a better finish than the Mac. The MacS was a faster sailing boat. The MacX will not sail as well as the Hunter because it is a motor sailor. The MacX has a much smaller cockpit, and is more difficult to enter and exit. If you want a motorsailor then the MacX is the choice, if you want a sailboat buy the Hunter. Down below the Hunter has a better aft berth, bigger head, better galley, more usable room and better storage space than the Mac. The 260 has stronger mast, goosemeck, boom, sails than the Mac.

I have read about many owners of Hunter 260's talking about it being tender and having to reef early. That has not been my experience, I wet slip my boat in a club with 525 slips. This gives me the opportunity to often sail near many different boats in the 24 to 28 ft size and watch how they behave in a gust of wind. It seems to me many of the keel boats are in fact more tender than the 260. For example a Laser 28 is much more tender than the 260, a Tanzer 26 heels about the same as the 260. The Laser is a much faster boat of course but the Tanzer is about the same. I found it has never rounded up on me, I can let out the mainsheet a bit or turn up wind a bit to keep her sailing well in a gust. Paying more attention to sail trim will allow the boat to sail longer without reefing.

With a linkage between the outboard motor and the rudder and the center board down a bit the boat handles quite well in close quarters with a bit of experience.

The 260 is easy to setup and launch from most any ramp. It comes with a high quality trailer with a built in tongue extension.

On a lake the 260 is a perfect boat for weekends and longer for a couple or small family.

my $.02, Bob
 
Aug 9, 2005
825
Hunter 260 Sarasota,FL
Go with the 260 and you won't be sorry. It's a fine vessel that fills it's design limits perfectly and yet is the perfect balance between too much boat and not enough. It's very roomy, sails well, is fast in light air, can be trailered to your house(or anywhere) with minimal effort and isn't a powerboat/sailboat that can't do either very well.

Replacement parts?? It's a simple sailboat not a foreign car. Anything you'd want along with the usual barrage of marine upgrades is readily available either at the factory website or after-market toy stores for the thousands that were built.

Good luck. M&K
 

Attachments

Jul 31, 2009
165
None None None
The Mac is a hybrid and is a better motor boat than sailboat. In my opinion the Hunters are much, much better construction. I own a Hunter but have sailed a friend's Mac 26X. No comparison. I think a lot of folks get the Mac because it is 26 feet and usually quite inexpensive.

Bill Jones
 
Dec 12, 2010
12
shopping: Hunter 260? PNW
Macs VS Hunter 260

I think there's a lot of good things about the Mac 26X and M, it really depends on what you are looking for in a trailer sailor. If you want the bigger motor, and access to shallower waters, easier trailering, and a much cheaper price, the Mac is the ticket. If you are more interested in a nicer cabin and cockpit, and have a bit more to spend, the Hunter is your baby. IMHO, both are in the same general ballpark when it comes to the actual sailing, when compared to a "real" keel sailboat.
 
Oct 10, 2010
251
Hunter H260 Gull Lake
Here is another point to discuss. Both boats do not have a traveler. The main sheet on the MacX is connected to the pedistal and the hunter is clipped to the floor of the cockpit. Can it be modified and moved to the top of its pedistal. Maybe I should ask if there is a preference, to me it seems the pedistal would be a better place.
 
Oct 10, 2010
251
Hunter H260 Gull Lake
Purchase Update

Here is an update on my possible purchase. I have been dealing via phone and email on a 260 for the last 2 weeks. I have an inkling that there is some funny business going on with this broker:Liar:. Today I got some local authorities to looki into the legitimicy of the broker who is supposedly selling this boat. I hope my gut is wrong and this deal goes through but I am not confident right now. I will fill everyone in whichever way this turns out. Hopefully I will have an answer tomorrow. Its going to be an interesting story of a purchase:D or of fraud :naughty:.
 
Jul 31, 2009
165
None None None
Re: Purchase Update

One other issue is the wheel steering on the Mac. It does fine when motoring, but the wheel is too small for sailing. Also, the two rudders have to be raised when motoring. Failure to do so results in damage to the rudders as they make contact with the engine propeller.
 
Aug 9, 2005
825
Hunter 260 Sarasota,FL
The main sheet is attached to the floor in the 260 to provide the best possible strength in a blow. Moving it to anywhere on the pedestal would be ill advised and would also create an issue with installing a bimini. While a traveler is nice for perfect sail trim, I think you'll find that the benefit of a traveler in most casual sailboats like these doesn't warrant the gear that clutters the free flow of movement in the cockpit for guests and yourself.

Good luck in your search but don't limit yourself to a single deal much less only one broker. Trailer boats can be easily moved so broaden your horizon.

M&K
 
Status
Not open for further replies.