Sunday, November 27, 2011
Yesterday I considered the Hunter 490, designed by Oliver Lee. Today, I’m looking at the Hunter Sonata, designed by David Thomas. Commissioned by Peter Poland of Hunter Boats in 1975, Thomas set about designing the round bilge Sonata based upon his highly successful multi-chine quarter-tonner, the Quarto. He came up with a smaller and cheaper 22 footer with a cracking performance. Credit must be given to Hunter Boats who did a very good job moulding the hulls and decks for completion at their factory, and for home completion with a standard set of kit parts. There was a choice of hulls: those fitted with a deep fin keel and those with a drop keel.
Many clubs chose the class for one-design racing due to their popularity and excellent handling characteristics. In recognition of their fine qualities and sheer numbers, the RYA drew up strict regulations for one-design racing and gave the class National Status. The RYA adopted them as their first official racer/cruiser. On all accounts they couldn’t have chosen a better, affordable yacht worthy of the honour. No doubt they considered others such as the ‘E’ Boat, and the Anderson 22, but they were nowhere near as popular or numerous.
Most of what can be said about this yacht may be found at the Sonata Sailing website,* and it’s all positive. (See the first link below.)
Built between 1975 and 1990, in total 479
LOA 6.9 m
LWL 5.5 m
Beam 2.5 m
Draught 1.4 m Fin Keel
Sail Area Mainsail 10.2 sq m
Genoa No 1 - 13.9 sq m No 2 - 9.0 sq m
Text for the Day
Psalm 47:6, 7 ‘Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our King, sing praises! For God is the King of all the earth; Sing praises with understanding.’
*Sonata Sailing Website
Hunter Sonata Drop Keel version for sale £4,450
Hunter Sonata Fin Keel Sold £5,995 with road trailer