Published in SAIL Magazine, 1988
Just Launched – Sabre 34 Targa A-C
by Tom Dove
Sabre yachts occupy a niche between custom vessels and standard production boats; they are upscale without being unaffordable. Catering to the experienced sailor who wishes to race competitively and cruise long distances comfortably has provided steady growth for the company even when the sailing marketplace showed wide swings.
The Targa Aft-Cabin is an alternate version of the successful Sabre 34, now dubbed the “Classic”. They share the same hull and rig, except both are now available in wing or deep keel versions. A centerboard hull can be ordered only with the Classic layout.
The new wing keel is conservative, like the design of the rest of the boat, and provides a Chesapeake-compatible draft of 4’6″ and a typical PHRF rating of about 138. The slightly faster deep keel boat ratÎes about 132 and draws six feet.
The interior plan of the Targa A-C improves the navigation station, the head and the companionway access while enlarging both sleeping cabins.
The nav station gets its own upholstered seat in the new boat. The large, bright, well-ventilated head is abaft the nav seat to starboard of the steps.
The aft cabin on the port side has good stowage and its own hanging locker. The galley was changed from a U-shape to an L-shape to accomodate the new cabin.
A pleasant result of these changes is that the steps are safer now. As you descend from the cockpit, bulkheads with grabrails on either side give more security than the wide-open Classic arrangement.
The interior is teak and white with cypress ceilings and joinery is of Sabre’s usual excellent quality, with plenty of rounded grabholds and strong hardware. Sabre makes all of its own wood parts instead of importing standard pieces as is common in production boats.
The saloon has a U-shaped settee with aÎ dropleaf table surrounding the keel-stepped mast. This replaces the bulkhead-mounted table of the Classic 34.
The forward cabin is larger than that of the Classic and has its own hanging locker, seat, and sink.
The new Sabre powered easily with good low-speed maneuverability around the docks. In a ten-knot breeze, she indicated better than five knots close-hauled and tacked easily. There was no evidence of excessive leeway from the moderate wing keel as the wind dropped and we dodged crab pot buoys.
Movement on deck was easy and the flat-topped coamings made it simple to enter and leave the cockpit. Skippers who like to sit to leeward in light air will be comfortable, and the arched helmsman’s seat is high enough for good visibility.
Sabre’s finish and detailing are excellent, and the boat can be customized extensively. The base price is $90,800 and the test boat with wing keel, two sails, roller furling, basic electronics and a few other options was $108,010.
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