Columbia 33 Specifications

Manufactured by:

Columbia Yachts

Division of Glass Marine Industries

849 West 18th St., Costa Mesa, CA

Wesley and Jackson Sts, Portsmouth, Virginia

Wirth Munroe designed the C-33 and it was first produced by Crystaliner who marketed it as an Arco 33. They reportedly made 15 (or 20) copies starting in 1959 and sold the molds to Columbia.

Alan Chappell lives aboard hull #1 and has cruised to the Florida Keys and Cuba.

Columbia advertised the C-33 as a deep water cruiser designed by Wirth Munroe. They produced 61 copies between 1963 and 1965.

Dick Valdes talked about a lot of the boats at the Long Beach Rendezvous on Feb. 23, 2002. Here is Mike Fellows' recounting of how the C-33 became the C-34:

"The C-33 was a fast and comfortable boat from Wirth Monroe who had designed and raced Commanche in the SORC. The boat was a direct descendent of Commanche but Wirth didn't have an eye for looks and we all called the C-33 the "Guanno" boat cause it looked like ----.! (Mike, a C-33 owner notes: they still had the nerve to market it as a "flagship" in the brochures). So after about fifty boats we decided to see if we could make a change. So we took a C-40 deck we had laying around and set it on a C-33 and it pretty much fit, and looked much better, so we took a saw and trimmed off all the overhangs and that's how the C-34 was born."

Here are the C-33 and C-34 diagrams overlaid. Please note that these are scans from brochures and not engineering drawings.

A pair of Columbia 33s.

At least one C-33 was sold as a bare hull. Here is what is known about Fantail, hull #56, according to her new owner, Mike Fellows:

Here's that story -- (in 1965) according to a bill of sale a Mr. Richardson negotiated and bought a hull with lead keel installed from Glass Laminates, had the hull trucked and negotiated with Columbia for plans from which to make the cabin top. One set of plans sent by Columbia are signed by Bruce King, and appear to be the ones that Richardson used to complete the project. She has been documented with three names, Sea Itch (she has a terrible, ugly, back scratcher logo on her Spinnaker -- honest!), and Holiday (under which she was raced on Erie by her second owner (I have two or three sheets of results listing her as semi-successful).


LOA     33'-1"                  Ballast (lead)  4200 lbs.
LWL     24'-0"                  Displacement    11000 lbs.
Beam    9'-10"                  Sail Area         476 sq. ft.
Draft   3'6" Board up           CCA Rating        22.6
Draft   7'0" Board down         Head Room         6'5"

Mike also writes:

I have half dozen sheets of plans for the C33 showing construction detail and each sheet listing a different effective model (modifications apparently made after hull # 37, and again after hull #49). It also appears that there were a number of C33's sold as hull only (w or w/o lead keel attached). Fantail of course was one, but another appears to be "Vamoose", listed as a "Custom Columbia 33" which was winner of the first "HOOK" in 1984 (an offshore race of some 200 nautical miles from Sturgeon Bay Yacht Club to Racine Yacht Club). Fantail herself by the way was winner of a Sandusky, Ohio regatta in 1975 when she sailed as "Holiday" owned by Frank Cervallo.

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