Prism's Blog

3 weeks of madness to buy our Hans Christian 33t!

       I need to give a little update about what we have been up to. For those of you who do not know about our first boat and our cruise down the California coast, go to On a short note, back in 2010 Jon and I bought our first boat, a Caliber 28 for way cheap. She was in rough shape, and we said we were just going to do the major problem areas and then head out for Mexico. Well the major problems turned into a a major project, and we spent the next year and a half finishing a total refit. After spending a lot of money, she was ready fort the water once again, we launched her in November 2011. We spent some time up in Berkeley, doing the final touches and headed south to warmer waters in August 2012… the blog listed above goes into detail of that trip. 

        To close on our first blog…..Once we made it to Ventura in late September 2012, we were tan and lived it up for the rest of the summer then headed inland and up the mountain for the winter to help out family for the winter. Being away from “Tara” and really thinking about our trip down the cali coast, we came to the heart breaking decision to sell “Tara”.
           Reasons for selling our pride and joy boat that we put all our blood sweat and tears into: WE HAVE TOO MUCH CRAP! And its not that we own a lot of crap… well kinda…a girl likes her shoes 🙂 it’s just after you load a boat full of all my diving gear, Jon’s’ camera gear, all the cruising spares, provisions, wine, tequila, of course rum, books, and musical instruments…you know all the necessities, well there is no room left of us on the boat.
          So we started to look for a bigger boat, and there was a list of MUST HAVES on the new boat that we were going to buy. The list was short but not many boats under 43 feet had everything that we were looking for, and we knew we did not want a boat over 40 feet long (correction Jon did not want a boat over 40 feet long… but I shortly came to the same conclusion after making a stack pack for a 43 foot boat. Working with a 20 foot boom is no fun).
  • U-shape dinette
  • U-shape galley
  • aft state room
  • stall shower
  • master berth was not a v-berth
  • encapsulated keel
  • less heel the better (yea yea…. I know and I call my self a sailor)
  • good engine access aka NOT in cabin sole
         Gez when you look at it like that, I didn’t think I was that needy. Any who… we were looking on line every night narrowing the list down and down. We looked at a few boats, most of them were 40 -43 feet in length including a NAVIGATOR 42 made by Moa-ta, so while Jon was down in San Diego on a job he took a look at it, and it was nice, but it didn’t call out to him. Then we thought about the Mariner Neptune 41′, which was a cool boat but needed to much work and had a lot of systems that we were not interested in. Jon and I came very close to buying a Lafitte 44′ which was way larger than what we had originally wanted, but the asking price was very inviting. So Jon and I went to go look at this boat, and everything about it was so cool, I fell in love right away. The inside was so spacious, and the galley! Oh man the galley, I will forever have dreams about the space and the fridge and freezer on that boat. But once Jon and I really sat down and thought about it, we decided that 44′ was way to big of a boat. I would not feel comfortable handling that boat alone if Jon was not around. So we moved on.
              We had always what I liked to called “oo-gil-d” (which means to be in love and dream about it) about the Hans Christian 33′ aka HC33, but this boat has always been way out of our price range. The HC33 has everything on both of our must have lists minus the u-shape dinette, but the large curved L shape was a compromise I was willing to make. So we set our hearts on owning a Hans Christian 33t. Sure enough “Prism” came onto the market. She had a lot of gear on her, she was ready to go and had a price that we liked.
             Once the winter season ended (the beginning of April) we started the process of moving off “Tara” and listing her with a broker and moving up to Washington to buy “Prism”.
                   The count down to buying our HC33
           Fast forward to now——–>>> Tuesday May 14, 2013 it is 10 pm I am so tired but we really wanted to have this post ready to upload tomorrow. The last 3 weeks have been non stop with Jon flying in and out for work, trying to move, sell a boat, buy a new boat, birthdays to go to, and weddings to go to. We were down in Ventura packing up our boat, it’s amazing how much stuff could fit on a 28′ boat. Our Subaru however did not like this move at all, but handled it like a champ.
With all our belongings packed in the car we said good bye to Ventura and the really good friends we made there. On a side note, these friends were a large inspiration for Jon and I to buy a Hans Christian, they have a HC38 and we loved the room and look of the boat, and to hear the stories of where they had been, the sailing and storms they had been though, we knew we wanted a boat that could take us wherever we wanted to go as well, with enough room for family and friends to come visit once in a while. 

             Ok back to our crazy 3 weeks…we moved “Tara” to Oxnard and put her in Vintage Marina. Our last sail on “Tara” is one that we will never forget. While Jon was in New York the week before he had si-tek send him the missing auto pilot part we had not received in over 5 months. So right before we left the docks of Ventura west marina Jon finished installing the auto pilot that had been giving us problems since day one and we pushed off. As we passed the break water the sun came out for the first time in a week along with a 5knt breeze and a 1-3 foot swell. We couldn’t of asked for a more perfect day. About 10 minutes in we remembered that we should try the auto pilot… the moment of truth… IT WORKED!

Only took a year to get working, and for the first time Jon and I were both able to be at the bow of our boat and enjoy the sun and hands free sailing. To bad it only took an hour to get to Oxnard, and we couldn’t stay out ans play more cause we had people waiting for us and a time limit to get checked into our new marina. We tied “Tara” into her new slip and kissed her goodbye knowing that this would be the last time we would see her as being her owners.
      The following week….May 5, 2013 our first day to take a breath before the move, we went to a wedding the day before and were ready for a day off. May 6th we packed up the last of our things and left Madera California around 7am, we were headed to Trinidad California 8 hours away, but a beautiful drive minus the huge traffic delays at Shasta Lake. Jon worked for the next 2 days shooting Motion (if you don’t know the TV show “Motion” you should check it out at’s an outdoor hiking and travel show) while I, well I just relaxed at an amazing B&B called The Lost Whale Inn and I watched large grey whales pass by while I soaked in the spa. Rough life I know.
            Thursday May 9th we headed for Olympia Washington, leaving Trinidad around 6:30ish. And once again well the first half of the drive was amazingly beautiful. We drove though Oregon at light speed and made it to Olympia around 4pm. Our broker was there to show us the boat for a quick view before our sea trial and haul out the next morning. Yes this is the first time we had looked at the boat in person, we had made an offer on the boat just based on what we saw in pictures and from the brokers word I know I know it was bold… yes, but we really wanted this boat. So we wrote a letter to the owners just with a little info about who we were and what we wanted to do, along with our offer. About 3 days later, our offer was accepted and that’s when we started these 3 weeks of madness.
      Friday May 10th this is the day! We were hopping everything went smoothly, the previous owners came down to do the sea trial and haul out with us.

What a great couple, the had taken the boat down to Mexico and cruised for 3 years down there. As we hopped, everything had worked out great! There were no huge surprises, or devastating heart break problems up until we went to the bank. That morning Jon and I had checked out of our hotel and were planning on sleeping on the boat Friday night. After the survey was done and we were still happy with everything we went to the bank to get the cashiers check, but our funds were on a hold. They said that the hold will be lifted at midnight, what good that did for us. So we called the broker and told him sorry but it was going to have to wait till the morning to finish up all the paperwork and hand over the money. Jon and I booked one more hotel room for the last night before we would officially own a HC33. The bank opened at 9 am on Saturday morning, we were there first thing as they opened the doors. Got our check and headed straight for the broker. Signed the paper work and, paid the bill, “Prism” is OURS! Whoop whoop. BUT there is a slight delay. The boat is on the yacht club dock, and well we are not allowed on the dock unless we are with an escort or member of the club. all the brokers were on sea trials, so we didn’t know anyone that was part of the club and the previous owners were already on a flight home. So we had to wait, and wait and wait to get on our new boat, talk about being anxious! So to kill time we walked around the harbor, it was boaters season opening day, so there were lots of booths, food, and a lot of people watching. Around 3 pm we got to our boat, turned her on and motored to the guest dock of swan marina. 
             For 2 days all we did was unload the car, the mini storage that came with the boat, and started to make “Prism” our home.

Everything that was in the subaru is now on the dock

Then the sorting happened, to go though all the stuff that we had and all the stuff that the boat came with, well it took about 4 hours. 

This weekend there is a boat flee market swap meet thing that I am going to go, to try and sell the stuff we don’t want or need. After a lot of this and that with the marina, and not really liking the vibe of Olympia, we deiced to move the boat up to Tacoma Washington. 
  So we pushed off on Tuesday morning and headed for Dock Street Marina. I can see why boaters love it up here! It is so beautiful, I was there was more wind, it seems more of a power boaters dream down here. Jon was saying that when your sailing though it feels like you are on a high elevation lake, and its true it pretty much looks like shaver or Huntington lake, but much larger and filled with wild animals.

As we were leaving Olympia a bald eagle escorted us out of the port, then a pod of small what I think was dolphins but I am not really sure, just passed by us as we headed north. There was no wind, the sun came out but it was still cold that we had to leave our jackets on. We were riding the ebb all the way to Tacoma, and through “ the narrows” going under the narrows bridge we were doing 11.1 knts!
We were moving fast! It took us about 5 hours to get to our new dock, which will be home for the next 2 months as we take care of the small projects that need to be done before we make our way south.


May 15th 2013—> To end on a good note today, we just got a call from our broker and we have an offer on “Tara” lets hope this all works out!!

10 thoughts on “3 weeks of madness to buy our Hans Christian 33t!

  1. “Prism” looks like a beautiful boat – perfect for two beautiful people. The world is yours … enjoy! Your friends, Joseph & Marci s/v “Horizon”.

  2. Hey Shannon and Jon – we met you in Port Angeles and in Neah Bay – when you invited the whole harbour to a party. Where are you now, and how is it going. Enchante is in Eureka and heading south first weather window. Marida is already there. Reed, Alan and Lindy

  3. Hello Jon and Shannon,
    Great to meet you at the boat the other day as you were finishing applying one of many Cetol coats.
    Love the blog and the boat! In just 3 days of research the HC33 has become a top contender. I will be having a look at a 1984 HC33 this weekend in Sausalito. Here's the link:
    Perhaps we could talk more about the merits of the HC33T. If you are up for it, drop me a line or give me a call.
    Many thanks, Michael s/v Alma, Berkeley 707-486-7498

  4. Michael it was great to meet you the other day. You had perfect timing as we finished the first coat. We have put 2 more coats on but then the rain yesterday made up stop, we are hoping to get the first coat of gloss on tomorrow. We would love to talk more about the HC33 with you. Jon will send you an email. This weekend we are heading inland to see some family. But when we get back feel free to come by the boat any time.

Leave a Reply