Questions for 26S owners

Jul 7, 2004
8,016
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
The marina we intend to use will launch/store offseason for fairly reasonable fees (literally the price of gas to drive a full size pickup to the lake). 30K+ for a full size pickup plus an 11 hr drive to get to the lake kinda defeats the purpose.

Though I would very much like to own a Tundra :)
If you are going from a boatyard to the ramp it's a no brainer. use their facilities. A tow vehicle comes in real handy if you can tow it home in the offseason to work on it. Something you'll always have to do. Of course that assumes you have room for it.
 
Jan 19, 2010
10,003
Hunter 26 Charleston
But be forwarned. There are a lot of people who hate on the Mac 26X. Same is true for the Hunter Edge.
 

NINEv2

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Jul 21, 2020
88
Catalina 250 Black Hills
I have, and the x in particular is in the running, but I need to visit with one and see if the enclosed head is even remotely useable. The M is usually outside my budget too.
 
Jan 19, 2010
10,003
Hunter 26 Charleston
That's the kind of thing you reminisce about some day when sitting on the front porch of the nursing home. I wonder if the people who prefer watching football on the TV will will have fond memories of doing it?
I have the netflix app on my phone. So... I also watch TV while bobbing at anchor.
 
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NINEv2

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Jul 21, 2020
88
Catalina 250 Black Hills
Nice, thanks guys. Interestingly that's right across the river from another marina I intended to visit.
 
Mar 9, 2009
83
Macgregor 26S New Port Richey, Fl
First photo shows the stern of our Mac26s. You can see the swim platform, same as a power boat. The shining bar across the top is what a powerboater calls a rocket launcher for holding fishing poles, and I use it to support the mast when on the trailer.
The second picture shows the pop top up while sailing which is whatwe slways do except in high windsor rain.
 

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kenr74

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May 3, 2019
46
Magregor 26S Oregon
I miss my 26S but the interior was only good for sitting or crawling around. Not even close to standing room. With the top up I could stand but that is a small portion of the interior.
 

NINEv2

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Jul 21, 2020
88
Catalina 250 Black Hills
Whups... went back to work and haven't checked in for a couple days. Thanks again for everyone's input. Looks like the 26S is out of the running, but y'all saved me many potential miles of driving!
 
Sep 24, 2018
1,475
O'Day 25 Chicago
I wouldn't consider the 26S a "floating RV". I have heard a Hunter owner call his a "Hunterbego" .
A capable tow vehicle is going to be essential to your plan. Beg, borrow or steal one. Few rentals come with a trailer hitch.
Enterprise truck rental has some pretty sweet trucks. I couldn't hide my grin when they showed me my truck for the day. U-Haul has hitches and most construction oriented rental houses have hitches on their trucks.
 
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Apr 11, 2020
154
Hunter 170 Grapevine
We purchased a Mac 26S at the end of August of this year and I love it. Hard to imagine a boat better suited to our circumstances.

I decided I wanted a boat that I could trailer behind my minivan so that I would not have to rely on marina services should I need to haul it out, or if we decide we want to sail in on another lake. I trailered it all the way from St. Louis to Dallas with no worries.

We needed an affordable boat, which this one was. 1994 model, very well taken care of, for $6900. Came with all kinds of extras, and was ready to sail with only a little work needed on the motor.

Improvements and maintenance are quite affordable, thanks in large part to Blue Water Yachts. Todd owns and sails one of these, and has become my guru regarding modifications and repairs. I find that their prices are excellent, as is Todd's advice.

The boat is a joy to sail. I find that it is very well-balanced with little if any weather helm in most circumstances. Easy to single-hand, and accelerates nicely. I find that I am out-sailing or at least keeping up with most of the boats I pit myself against, even when they are flying 125-150% genoas. Of course, they may not really be trying all that hard, right?

The cockpit is roomy. I have seen boats much larger without as much cockpit space.

I have gotten all kinds of compliments on the boat itself. The lines are clean and I think the standard sail package is just perfect for the boat.

With the centerboard design, we can sail pretty much anywhere we want without worrying about running aground. This is a big plus for us.

We have gone "lake camping" with the boat once and are eager to go again. The aft berths are plenty big. The forward berths don't allow enough foot room for two adults, IMO, so I would say three adults, two kids max unless someone wants to sleep in the cockpit, which would be doable I suppose.

All that said, there are some caveats:

It does not have a stand-up cabin. The pop-up allows a person to stand in the cabin, and that pop-up can be enclosed with windowed plastic cover, but moving elsewhere in the boat (i.e. to the head), will require stooping.

The 26S is a water ballast boat, and is self-righting, but can be capsized. Sailing a boat without a keel is not as forgiving. The plus of this is that it makes you pay attention to the balance of sail power, thus you end up sailing the boat more optimally than if you just were relying on the keel to keep things steady.

The hardware on the 26S is not as robust as what you will see on most other boats. I would not want to take this boat out of unprotected waters except close to the coast with full confidence that weather for the sail was not going to get nasty. I sail on a medium-sized lake (Grapevine) and feel no need or desire to go out in winds greater than 25 MPH.

The 26S has been described in at least one boat review as a "boat kit". It has provisions for adding a traveler, jib sheet tracks, and other improvements, but this is left up the the owner. If you like doing this sort of thing (as I do), it can be a plus.

I carefully weighed my options and selected this boat for the reasons mentioned above. So far I have no regrets.
 
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