Specifications: Cape Dory 36

Ariel is a Cape Dory 36 (hull #7), designed by the famous Swedish naval architect Carl Alberg, who designed so many sweet classic coastal and blue-water cruisers. His designs feature deep, narrow hulls with full keels and cutaway forefoot, low-aspect ratio rigs, moderate displacement and sea-kindly motion. Cape Dory Yachts in East Taunton, Massachusetts, built 165 of these beauties before ceasing production in 1985. Cutter rigged, displacing 16,000 pounds (design weight) with 6,000 pounds of internal lead ballast, Ariel has a traditional interior, comfortable cockpit, wide sidedecks, and solid construction. She is powered by a Perkins 4.108 50hp diesel.

L.O.A.: 36' 1 1/2"
L.W.L.: 27' 0"
Beam: 10' 8"
Draft: 5' 0"
Displacement: 16,100 lbs.
Ballast: 6,050 lbs
Sail Area: 622 sq. ft.
Mast Height: 46 1/2'
Designer: Carl Alberg
Years Built 1978 - 1990
Nr. Built 165

The cutter rig is a traditional design that allows for a variety of sail combinations to suit wind velocity. In moderate winds (approx. 10-15 knots), the boat sails nicely with all sails flying. When the wind pipes up, the available sail configurations translate into a good turn of speed without excessive heeling or stress on the rig. Some CD36s have been converted to sloops by removing the inner-forestay. This modification allows for a larger headsail, but makes handling the sail and managing the boat in adverse conditions more difficult. In her original configuration, the sail area can be reduced more easily and in increments that allow the boat to sail beautifully in changing conditions. The boat can be easily managed by a single person, but is most comfortably sailed by two.

The Cape Dory 36's low-aspect ratio rig - i.e., a shorter mast and longer boom than more modern designs - may mean that she doesn't sail as well to weather as more modern boats, but the design reduces the stresses on the rig, provides better off-the-wind performance, and adds up to a safer, more reliable rig. Likewise, her traditional slack bilges and wineglass shape give her a comfortable motion in a seaway, reducing fatigue and increasing enjoyment.

The Cape Dory 36 remained largely the same during its production. The major difference was a change to the interior layout some time in the early 80s when an L-shaped settee to port replaced the fixed table that mounted to the cabin sole, and additional storage was added to the starboard settee. Other differences involve component and tankage placement. Market values for the Cape Dory 36 range from 40,000 to more than 100,000 depending on year, inventory, and condition. Although production of the CD36 ceased in 1985, the hull is back in production by a company called Robinhood Marine and sells for more than 300,000.

Cape Dorys have a devoted group of owners, many of whom participate in an online forum dedicated to Cape Dorys of all models and years. The collective experience of forum members continues to prove helpful to new and inexperienced owners. You can access the Cape Dory Board here.

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