1979 27' Pacific Seacraft Orion 27

Deltaville, Virginia, United States
$18,500 USD
Condition: Fair

Southwind is a 1979 Pacific Seacraft Orion 27, a sturdily built and very capable blue water cruiser.

Southwind comes with a complete set of sails (mainsail new 2017, 135% Genoa new in 2012), ground tackle including three anchors (Spade, Fortress, CQR), reliable Raymarine tiller pilot and many other spares and extras.

She has had significant improvements and work done over the last two years by an ABYC certified boat yard while she’s been in Deltaville, VA.

Bottom paint, trim work (Cetol) and boot and cove stripe paint (Interlux) as well as new tiller, USB chargers, bilge pump, main battery, throttle cables and start/stop buttons have all had recent work completed.

The Betamarine 20HP diesel was an upgrade over the original Yanmar 16HP and was installed new about 10 years ago by a professional boatyard. It has been a great motor with around 1000 hours to date. This summer the engine was remove and many deficiencies were corrected while the boat was not being sailed.

In August 2020 her engine was removed, the head was reconditioned, valves rebuilt, all (three) fuel injectors replaced, exhaust hose to thru hull replaced, new heat exchanger header tank installed. She got a new pressure relief cap and handle, injector lines, raw water hose and glow plug bus bar.

To complete this significant rebuild all four engine mounts were replaced, engine compartment painted, engine painted and reinstalled.

Southwind was recently (May, 2020) inspected by a certified surveyor and the running rigging, deck, compression post, mast, boom and hull were found to be free from any deficiencies.

As with many 40 year old boats some issues will need to be addressed. Forward hatch lens, minor interior water damage and companion way hatch needs replacement.

The current owners are in Arizona due to the pandemic and unable to complete their sailing plans.

‘Southwind’ is currently on the hard in Deltaville, Va and is being sold at a deeply discounted price ‘as is’.

Equipment: Mainsail (new 2017): Rigged for first and second reef Genoa 135% with foam luff in very good condition (new 2012) Tiller (new 2019) All exterior teak refinished with CETOL light marine (2019) Cove stripe and boot strip refinished with Interlux Brightside (2019) Bottom paint (2019) Bowsprit (new 2018) Rigging adjust & inspected (2018) Roller furling line (new 2017) Custom bimini (new 2018) Sailrite sailpack (new 2018) Blue Sea Systems BelowDeck panel 12V socket & dual USB charger (new 2018) Raymarine ST2000 tiller pilot (new 2016) Betamarine 20HP diesel engine with under 1000 hours (new 2015) Oil, filter, engine zinc and impeller changed (2019) 3 Blade fixed propeller reconditioned (2018) Fresh water strainer overhauled (2018) VHF at navstation Handheld VHF with DSC and GPS (new 2017) Binoculars with neck strap and teak wall mount Windex and light activated LED anchor light (new 2017) iPad suction cup mount for cockpit 27 pound Spade anchor (new 2014) with 50 1/4 chain and 200 1/2 rode Fortress anchor with recommended 10 chain plus 150 1/2 rode CQR (20 pound) and Danforth anchors and additional 100 rode Swim ladder Origo two burner stove 2 water tanks with inspection ports (deep cleaned 2019) Galley foot pump and head hand pump Electric 1500 GPH bilge pump (new 2017) Manual backup bilge pump (new 2019)


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Henry Morschadt
Pacific Seacraft
Pacific Seacraft Orion 27 Club
# Built


Length Overall
30 10 / 9.4 m
Length On Deck
27 3 / 8.3 m
Waterline Length
27 0 / 8.2 m
8 11 / 2.7 m
4 0 / 1.2 m
10,000 lb / 4,536 kg
3,500 lb / 1,587 kg (Lead)

Rig and Sails

Reported Sail Area
512′² / 47.6 m²
Total Sail Area
443′² / 41.1 m²
Sail Area
190′² / 17.6 m²
31 0 / 9.5 m
12 2 / 3.7 m
Mast Height
40 10 / 12.5 m
Sail Area
253′² / 23.5 m²
36 8 / 11.2 m
13 8 / 4.2 m
Forestay Length
39 2 / 12 m

Auxilary Power

Fuel Type
Fuel Capacity
20 gal / 75 l
Engine Hours


Water Capacity
75 gal / 284 l
Holding Tank Capacity
18 gal / 68 l
6 2 / 1.9 m


Hull Speed
6.31 knots
Sail Area/Displacement
good performance
less stiff, less powerful
Comfort Ratio
moderate bluewater cruising boat
Capsize Screening
better suited for ocean passages


From BlueWaterBoats.org:

Beautiful, strong, and capable the Orion 27, introduced in 1979, was one of the earlier boats to come from the well trusted Pacific Seacraft stable. Pacific Seacraft built its reputation on robust boats constructed with attention to detail. It was notable for being the last design by Henry Mohrschladt, who was one of the two original founders of Pacific Seacraft. Built in California, most examples to this day can be found on the West Coast and at least one has circumnavigated. Brec Morgan set out in Otter in 1998, visiting over 50 countries before completing his odyssey in 2003.

Unsurprisingly for a Mohrschladt design, the Orion 27 has conservative lines. Under the waterline is a long keel with a forefoot cutaway to improve nimbleness and reduce wetted area. The sections carry the tried and true wine-glass shape. Don’t expect record setting pace with this kind of shape; think strong, safe, and good manners for heaving-to in the rough. There’s a 6’1″ bowsprit to help carry her canvas and the rig came in 3 variations; sloop, yawl, and cutter. The cutter rig, best suited to longer distance sailing has a self tending staysail.

Layout and Variations

In addition to the three rig options, Pacific Seacraft offered two cabin layouts, and steering in tiller or wheel; note most examples are found with wheel steering. In 1981 an improved MkII version was introduced with a longer coachroof, two deck hatches, and an extra set of portlights.

The two layouts were named “A” and “C”. Both have a double v-berth, a hanging locker, a head, and a quarter-berth. A shower located in the head was an optional extra as was a pressurized water system for it.

The A-layout is more common and has a relatively roomy U-shaped dinette to port, lowering the dinette table converts the area into a double berth. On the starboard side is the galley with a nav-station further aft.

The C-layout was designed for longer cruises. Here the U-shaped dinette is sacrificed to gain room for a larger head and shower combo as well as providing space for a larger v-berth and more stowage in the forward sections. At the bottom of the companionway is a wet locker.


Through the years the boat has proven to be of sturdy construction. The hull is of hand-laid fiberglass and the decks are of glass cored with plywood. The hull to deck join is a double-flange bedded in polyurethane adhesive, thru-bolted with stainless bolts. This forms the bulwarks which encloses the deck and is capped in teak.

Links, References and Further Reading

» Orion 27 Owners Yahoo Group
» A Field Guide to Sailboats of North America by Richard M. Sherwoo, p192



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