1977 Islander I-36

I was very surprised at the asking price of $29,000 for this boat as the interior shows like a much more expensive boat. One of the greatest things about this boat is the entry into the cabin. The hatch doors open almost flush to the cockpit floor, and then the steps into the cabin are gradual with hand holds on both sides. If you are blue water cruising, you can fold up a small panel at the bottom of the hatch, keeping water out of the cabin. I don’t understand why more boats don’t have this feature.

The interior of this boat is really nice, especially at first glance. It’s easy to get carried away by the interior design and nice woodwork, so let’s give it a closer look.

Nifty, versatile table

See what I mean? This settee is really lovely and very comfortable. It also has storage behind the cushion. Also, this table is really very clever. It folds completely and slides into its own compartment when you are not using it, opening up the cabin and making it much roomier. We have a fold down table in Moonrise and I really love it. This particular table can be pulled out all the way, or halfway. It’s quite versatile.

This is a versatile table

Tables are an important feature inside the boat and in the cockpit as well. The table serves many functions and after living with two boats with three kinds of tables, I have strong opinions about what I want in this area. This table design is very clever in principle. So the reason they made this table out of heavy oak escapes me completely. I suppose they wanted it to match the rest of the woodwork. The fact is that this table is extremely heavy and difficult to implement. I had to have help sliding it back into place and I certainly would never entertain the idea of trying it if the boat was riding swells. It’s too bad that such a clever design was implemented so poorly. Still, that wouldn’t be a deal breaker for me if I loved the rest of the boat. I’d learn to live with it.

The table nicely stowed.

 

This boat had nice cabinetry through out, including in the head. Here’s the deal with the head, though. It had a nice wide cabinet underneath the sink. But the door was positioned such that I could not for the life of me figure out how one would access that space. Naturally in a boat this size the head is fairly small. There is barely enough room to turn around, much less enough room to squat on the floor and reach into a cabinet. Plus, the cabinet door opens to block the entry to the head, meaning you cannot access the cabinet from the passageway. I sat on the toilet and tried to reach into the cabinet, but I believe this position would work only for rubber band man. I wish I could ask the designer what he had in mind.

If you look at the photos, above the ports, you’ll see water damage to the wood. The broker explained that due to yet another design flaw on the exterior of the boat, water pools on a strip of wood above the ports, then runs along the wood and drips into the cabin.

But was that the deal breaker for this otherwise lovely boat? No. It was, as usual, the V berth, which would sleep two comfortably only if one or both of them were munchkins. Sigh.

 

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