1984 Catalina 38

1984 Catalina 38


Presented By

Heidy Gross



Our Location

San Diego
1450 Harbor Island Dr. Suite 203
San Diego, CA, US


’Island Star’ has been well maintained by her current owner, a retired airline pilot. With her 11’10” beam she offers plenty of space down below. This Sparkman and Stephen’s design was built as a raider-cruiser focusing on quality and performance with a max speed of 7.4 knots.

If you’re looking for low maintenance boat that is ready for summer trips to Catalina, this is it! 


Additional Information

In 1978, Catalina Yachts was a young company with a Midas touch, enjoying brisk sales of its sailboats from 22 to 30 feet, all of them designed and built in house. And then company owner Frank Butler tried something different. He bought the mold for the Yankee 38, designed by Sparkman & Stephens and descended from a successful one-off IOR aluminum raceboat, from the bankrupt Yankee Boat Co. Butler saw this competitive racer as a flagship that would raise the profile of the Catalina fleet. He was right. In 1980, the Catalina 38 was selected for the prestigious Congressional Cup. The company went on to build 366 Catalina 38s over the next 14 years.

Butler made significant changes to the S&S design. He replaced the skeg-hung rudder with a balanced spade rudder and created a high-aspect-ratio rig with a taller mast and shorter boom. He redesigned the interior for weekender livability and the deck and trunk cabin to match Catalina aesthetics.

Other aspects of the dated racing design — long overhangs, generous tumblehome and a pert little reverse transom — give the Catalina 38 its pleasing lines. Butler’s redesigned deck gives it a sleek, low profile but narrow side decks are a result of those changes. Passage from the cockpit to the foredeck can be tricky, especially if a wide dodger is fitted.

With its pedigree, it’s no surprise that owners report the Catalina 38 sails to windward like it’s on rails and also sails beautifully in light air. That superior upwind performance comes with a draft that approaches 7 feet, a limiting factor for some cruising sailors.

Boats designed to the IOR have a reputation for poor manners and instability downwind. But that reputation was earned under race conditions when boats were intentionally overpowered and driven hard. A cruising couple is unlikely to push any boat to the brink of broaching, and many find the IOR warhorses, including the Catalina 38, in fact make fine cruising boats.

Down below, the major interior components are incorporated into a molded hull liner. Teak trim and veneer are used for doors, drawer facings and bulkheads. In early models the cabin sole was fiberglass, but in later models it was covered with teak and holly veneer.

The keel-stepped mast abuts the bulkhead forward of the main saloon. Forward of the bulkhead are the head to port, lockers to starboard and the V-berth, which easily accommodates two adults.

A U-shaped dinette to port (that converts to a double berth) is the main feature in the saloon. Aft of the dinette is a snug U-shaped galley.

On the starboard side of the saloon is a long settee with stowage behind and beneath it. A nav station backs up to a quarter berth that extends under the cockpit.

Basic Information

Manufacturer: Catalina
Model: 38
Year: 1984
Category: Sail
Condition: Used
Location: Oxnard, CA, US
Available for sale in U.S. waters?: Yes
Vessel Name:
Boat Type: Racers and Cruisers
Hull Material: Fiberglass
Hull Type: -
Hull Color: -
HIN: ctym0278M84G
Flag of Registry: -

Dimensions and Weight

Length: 38.25 ft
LOA: 38.25 ft
Beam: 11.83 ft
Dry Weight:
Bridge Clearance:


Make: Universal
Model: 5424
Engine(s): 1
Hours: 763
Cruise Speed: 6.8 kn
Engine Type: Inboard
Drive Type: Direct
Fuel Type: diesel
Horsepower: 30 hp
Max Speed: 7.4 kn

Tank Capacities

Fuel Tank: 35 Gal()
Fresh Water Tank: 41 Gal()
Holding Tank: 21 Gal()


Total Cabins: 2
Berths Count: 2
Total Sleeps: 2
Total Heads: 1
Captains Count: No
Crew Cabins: -
Crew Berths: -
Crew Sleeps: -
Crew Heads: -


The Company offers the details of this vessel in good faith but cannot guarantee or warrant the accuracy of this information nor warrant the condition of the vessel. A buyer should instruct his agents, or his surveyors, to investigate such details as the buyer desires validated. This vessel is offered subject to prior sale, price change, or withdrawal without notice.