After years of building small sturdy daysailers from as early as 1964, the Cape Dory 25 was Cape Dory’s first foray into fully fledged cruisers. The story goes that founder Andy Vavolotis got a hold of the molds for the Greenwich 24 from Allied Boat Company in 1972 and raised her freeboard to improve headroom, thereby adding seven inches to her length.
Other alterations included a fully enclosed head, a hanging locker, and an enlarged galley. She’s a sloop rigged full keeler with a narrow low-freeboard hull that invites a wet ride. The design is quite dated but traditionalist will love the classic lines and underwater profile, and of course true to Cape Dory tradition, the construction is bulletproof.
Though the Cape Dory 25 was designed for coastal cruising some have taken their boats offshore. Author Ed Campbell writes of cruising the Gulf Coast of the United States, including a passage to the Bahamas. In one incident his Cape Dory 25 survived a collision with an underwater cable strung between two offshore oil rigs. For offshore work, no doubt good prep is in order, the guys at Atom Voyages suggest reducing the cockpit footwell volume and modifying the companionway dropboards so they don’t fall out when raised slightly.
Headroom is only five feet down below, this didn’t get fixed until the 25D successor came along which bumped it up to five feet eleven inches. Power comes by way of an outboard situated in a well in the lazerette. There have been small changes through the years including a switch from fixed port lights to bronze opening ports around 1979.
Production ended in 1982, when the model was replaced by the beamier, heavier, and deeper Cape Dory 25D. Of all the offshore capable Cape Dorys, non have sold better than the original Cape Dory 25 with a total production run of 846 boats.
» Cape Dory Owners Association, Cape Dory 25 brochures, owner discussions, and further information.