View Full Version : Info on 38' requested

6th December 2008, 03:49 PM
If any ony can help with some basic and not so basic questions on this boat I would be interested.

Is Bruce from Hairball on here?


6th December 2008, 04:34 PM
What kind of 38'?

6th December 2008, 04:55 PM
I just sold my Leopard 38 - would be happy to answer any questions.

8th December 2008, 05:54 PM

General stuff first...
Did you get the boat from Moorings and if so what were the early issues to deal with maintenance wise?
Any specific area's to look at on survey that you found early or after some time?
Any upgrades you did that you felt were a requirement for initial operation?
Any general impressions on operating "gotcha's"?

Specific stuff...
Did you load limit yourself to keep the transoms from digging in too much or need to shift loading forward?
What size/ weight dinghy do you feel is max for back end?
Did you use a cruising chute? What size?
Do the 38's suffer from the window sealant issues of the 45 and 47?
Does the battery area offer enough space for additional house batteries and is it in an area that doesn't effect boat balance too much?
Did you leave the engine driven refer system or change to 12V?



8th December 2008, 06:30 PM
I did not buy directly from Moorings but it was originally a Moorings boat. The fellow I bought it from had put in new engines. Most ex charter boats run pretty high engine hours so you usually have to budget some major money to rebuild or replace.

The Leopard build and finish quality is excellent. I did not encounter any significant issues.

I did replace the seals on all ports as they had deteriorated. This is a relatively easy job with minor cost for new rubbers.
The overhead ports in the heads leaked a bit at their mountings. I was able to seal with a windshield sealant however they probably should be rebedded.
I had a 9 ft. dingy which seemed about right for the boat. We had a 9.9 hp engine on the dingy and the boat carried it on the davits without immersing the transoms.
There were four house batteries with room for a couple more. I would not be worried about the weight of additional batteries but I would be inclined to leave the batteries alone and add solar panels instead. This way you reduce your engine run time while gaining electrical power.
The refer was electrical and worked well but again would benefit from solar panels.
She was in a second tier charter operation so I did not use a chute.

Operating issues :
The winches at the base of the mast love to snag the jib sheets while tacking. If I had kept the boat some deflector bars or a canvas cover to hide the catch points would have been in order.
The boat makes a terrific power boat with the two 40 HP engines. Unfortunately the largish engines were fitted with matching 3 blade fixed props so performance under sail was affected. For long term personal use I would invest in a couple feathering props which would probably add a knot or more to average speeds.


8th December 2008, 08:48 PM

Thank you for the input.

So you had no issues with the salon windows leaking?
How about systems issues? Water, Elec., Heads, Pumps etc. Any unusual repairs or modifications needed or just standard 'boat issues'?
Was your refer system air or water cooled? I gather it was modified with the engine change as I see most of them have engine driven units, I think. Were you happy with the amout of space in the fridge and freezer? Was the insulation enough to keep the units from cycling too often?
Was the forward cabin usable underway or would you use the aft cabin for overnight runs?

Thanks again,


8th December 2008, 09:24 PM
The forward salon opening ports all leaked until I replaced the rubbers. After replacement one still had a small persistent leak - not sure why but it was minor so we lived with it.
There were no unusual problems with the water and electrical systems. The boat has nice big fresh water tanks.
The refrigeration unit was air cooled - I think it was original. It worked reasonably well. The amount of space was fine but the top access units are not always easy to work with when full.
I never had occasion to sleep underway as we just used the boat in the Virgin Islands. The forward cabins have the best ventilation and would be fine if sailing in modest seas but if headed upwind in bumpy water I am sure you would sleep better aft.

10th December 2008, 01:51 AM
John, I too am looking at the leopard 38 it seems like a lot of them that are coming out of charter have the 4 cylinder Westerbeke 42's with anywhere between 3000 and 5000 hrs. These engines while being heavy are supposed workhorses and expected to run without major overhaul up to around 9000 hrs. Good luck in your search, Jim

18th December 2008, 04:55 PM

I have become a little concerned about the engins after reading that some or many have overheating issues as the water drains from the intake line when going over waves. It seems that a number of these boats have been re-fitted with different engines or new engines already. Coming out of the secondary charter market with what I see as about 6k hours it seems that it should be too early for this many boats to be re-powered already. I think that out of 8 boats on the market now, 3 have been re-powered.
I don't know...it may be too much to expect 3k hours after 6k hours of abuse.


29th December 2009, 09:49 PM
Hi , A new member and cant wait to get to know how the site works a bit better , forgive any ignorance please.

Ok , Im in the market for possibly a leopard 38 ,within the year, our prices in Aus are rediculous and am seriously thinking of purchasing OS , but am really scared of buying over the net or even putting a deposit down then travelling to only find not what i thought. I guess these are the gambles you take . My budjet will probably see me purchasing something a bit older than wanted , 2000 up I would hope .
Jim, and John , it has been a year since this post has been open . Have either of you puchased a Leopard , if so , what are your thoughts now.
eg , what can I look out for or expect as extras , motors , sails , although I guess a good servey should tell you this.
Have you found the leaking problems an issue . Many a boat has been bought back to our tropical climate and almost fallen to pieces due to finding leaks that they never knew existed before .Our wet season is very unforgiving.
I notice not much is said about exterior paint , I would think a 5 + year old cat would be nearly due for a repaint , or is this a minor issue compared to others .
Ill leave my questions here for now , Im very much the novice at this.
Look forward to your responses , cant wait to get onboard.
Regards , thanks , Darren

29th December 2009, 11:17 PM
Cant stop the questions , hope you dont all mind. Im so keen .
What are most of the hood lineings etc in the sallon , cabins etc , has there ever been issues with them , eg cleaning, mould , wear with age etc.
I kinda dont mind a simple painted surface , easy to clean, but as Ive said , this is all new to me and I have a world of learning ahead.
Kind Regards darren

29th December 2009, 11:35 PM
Hey Darren,
Still landlocked here in the desert Southwest thanks to the economy and a minor medical setback but hope to be back on the water by June.
I still am very much interested in the Leopard and hope to eventually be piloting one. There are quite a few listed on Yachtworld that have high engine hours, (previous charter) but look to be in really nice shape.
If you want one that hasn't been chartered try googling Rio Dulce Yachts, there's one sitting down there called, "Double Trouble" that looks to have been well kept.
Good Luck, Jim

30th December 2009, 08:54 AM
Yet another quick question .?? probably something I should know by now.
What sort of fuel economy and average cruise speed can you expect out of the Westerbake 44A. They are one of the largest diesels Ive seen in a cat this size.
What about spares , etc .
What sort of hours can you expect to get out of oneof these , I thought I read 9ooo was posinble . Thats not bad.
Thanks again , the pleasures surely mine , Darren

31st December 2009, 03:42 PM
Hello Darren and welcome to the site.

I have not purchased yet and will probably be holding off for 2 more years due to various issues not the least of which is the cost of ownership in South East Florida with dockage and hurricane insurance costs. At this point I cannot justify the costs of a part time use boat when that money would be better served in upgrades or added to purchase price in a couple of years.

For some valuable insights into the 3800 I would suggest you join the U.S Yahoo Leopard group. There is a small but active group of people that have had L38's for a number of years and are quite willing to give you tips and insights to the 38 and the engines. A couple of folks there have refit the engines already and can provide solid info.

The general perception I have gathered is that the ex charter boats are getting engine re-fits around 6000 to 7000 hrs on the originals. Some have gone to Volvo's and one of the guys on the yahoo site put in the 44B's. I think the 44A's are getting about 3/4 usg per hour at cruise per engine. (again read thru the old posts on the group site and you will find a lot of answers to your questions.)

The gel coat on any vessel should not need to be painted over after only 10 years and should be able to be buffed out. If the vessel has been painted it usually indicates that some repairs have been done by someone not able to spray gel coat and you will want to look closer for repair quality. Some people will just like a fresh paint job and spray anything just because they have the money to do it of course.

Good luck with your search,


2nd January 2010, 09:23 PM
Well , Im a little confused with fuel consumption figures . Please forgive my metric terms .
From what I have read , the Lagoon 380 has a fuel usage of approx 3 ltrs /hr ,I believe some of the other known makes are around the same .
If the Leopard is around 7ltre/hr ( one ad is saying 2 gallens which is closer to 7.6ltre /hr). , It makes it over double its competitors . This is way to high, and takes the joy out of owning a leopard , as not being a seasoned sailer , navigating and exploring out Great Barrier Reef , I would probably motor rather than sail , for safety issues . Admittadly only once on the reef .
A simple short trip up the coast to the closest marina for a nice dinner would be be for example , 50ltres / $ 62,50 , or Leopard 1oo ltres / $125. That makes the difference between a nice restaurant or dare I say McDonalds.( again Im assuming no wind and motoring , not always the case for sure)
I could be wrong and others could be refering to fuel burn , per side .
Please forgive my Aussie figures here but this is what I have to work with to make things realistic.
Can anyone verify fuel consumption figures , or let me know Im wrong .
It cetainly could sway my decisions . Hope you can help .
The pleaure is mine , thanks, cheers Darren

3rd January 2010, 02:04 AM
I'll need to go dig up all my info to give you a good answer but the short version is that the Yanmar in the L380 is probably more efficient yes. I remember that the 18hp in the Mahe 36 runs about 1/2 gal per hr/ per engine.
The 3800 is a pretty heavy boat, certainly heaver than the FP36. I'll need to check my notes for the L380 but I think it is even a little heaver or even with that.
Of course you do not need to run both engines all the time. If you are willing to loose a knot and a half or so you can simply run on one.

If someone doesn't jump in here with the numbers right away I'll dig out the info and get back to you tomorrow, if that is ok.