Hull #179 - Esperance


Quick Facts

Sailboat History

10/21/20 – My name is Gary Shinn. My wife, Merridy, and I bought Esperance, our 1967 Bristol 27, hull #179 in 2001 through Mahina Yachts in Winslow, Bainbridge Island, WA. She was then owned by an older Dutch gentleman named Simon Sluis. My understanding is that the original owner of the boat was a woman in Michigan who had plans to sail around the world. She shipped the boat to Seattle and at some point her dream fell apart. She sold her to a commercial photographer on Lake Union in Seattle. I believe he is the one who named her Esperance. Simon Sluis bought her and sailed her for a time until he was forced to sell due to a heart condition. We owned Esperance until in 2006, looking at many needed upgrades, we decided to sell her and buy something a little newer and roomier for the two of us to cruise in. We sold her to Jonathan Davis, from Texas, who lived aboard at anchor in Liberty Bay, Poulsbo, WA until he sold the boat to a guy planning to sail to Alaska. Looking back now we realize what a great boat she really was. Carl Alberg was a genius.


Bristol 27 Esperance under power (©Dave-Gillespie)


2/13/11 – Ryan purchased his bought from a person who was living aboard for two years.  Apparently, the previous owner had sailed from Texas stopping in California, Hawaii, then spent one year in the Puget Sound.

Owner Comments

7/11/2016 – Esperance and captain Ryan continue to enjoy one another’s company.  Here’s an updated image grabbed from the Photobucket album set below:

Bristol 27 Esperance - Photobucket Set v2 9


2/13/2011 – Love my Bristol, been living on it for 2 years now travailing mainly Puget sound.  i rewired the 12v/110v systems, re-plumbed the propane hoses, fixed the head, removed original thruhulls and the list goes on. there were nice appliances installed, but the installs all needed to be redone.

i am going to fly to Denny island, CA then sail my boat back to Puget sound. i started my journey not knowing what the hell i was doing living on a boat. everybody at the marina that didn’t live on there boats gave me a little grieve. not to mention liveaboard slips have to be purchased a head of time because of the limitation. first month was learning curve central, i care not to mention the times i hit my head. after the initial shock, i began thinking different about my lifestyle. so i started just anchoring out in bays, fishing, basically staying away from anything that would cost unnecessary money. also it is more fitting the lifestyle of living aboard a Bristol. let me explain, i couldn’t live on my boat if i was to work and commute in a normal sense. think showers, laundry, room for work cloths. the amount of energy to manage this is surprisingly difficult.

i work as a bartender and it allows me to have a job almost anywhere. generally i try to work at resorts, anchor my boat out allowing me to have a home away from work and commute by tender to work.

the boat is an amazing performer she doesn’t go as fast as other newer sailboats, but stable and solid. as i’m sure you know, being you are refitting an old boat. i owe my life to my boat, and everyday it teaches me something new. the bulk of my last trip up the inside passage was amazing, only i had to motor a good portion because of the limited winds.

i am realizing that i bit off to much to chew in trying to explain living aboard on a Bristol 27 is a great life.the dinette is a good layout if you want to live aboard. i am looking at installing a SIG marine 100 heater. my p9000 heater in the v-berth doesn’t produce enough heat. not to mention with the propane you wake up damp, have to walk miles in some cases to fill the tanks, and the constant worry of a leak. however i am still trying to find the best heating method without having to rely on power to heat glow plugs like the espar and others. if you have any advice please let me know? it hard to find small sailboat heating advice.

I use a 9.9 high thrust outboard which charges my batteries, but only 5 amps. so my next upgrade is a wind generating device.  My goal is to be self efficient except for diesel for heat and gas for outboard. with regards to water i use a rain catch, have a hand pump filter for fresh water streams, and a back up solar distiller.

At anchor



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