Buccaneer 18

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Specifications Under Current Rules
Number of crew 2
LOA 18 ft
LWL 16 ft 8 in
Beam 6 ft
Hull weight (with fittings) 500 lb
Draft 3 ft 10 in
Sail Area of total of Main and Jib 175 ft²
Sail Area of total of Spinnaker 178 ft²

The Buccaneer 18 is a day sailer for pleasure sailing as well as racing; it is sailed throughout North America.

Designed in 1966 by Rod Macalpine-Downie and Dick Gibbs, the Buccaneer 18 incorporates classic elements that have made this racing dinghy a consistent performer for more than 35 years.

Due to its hull design, the Buccaneer planes in 8-10 knots of wind. An integrated spinnaker launch tube, roller furling jib, and well-constructed sailplan, 7'3" cockpit with non-skid seats, deck and floor make it a good two-handed racing dinghy. Well balanced and easily handled, the Buccaneer continues to appeal to both seasoned competitors and new sailors.

Weighing 500 pounds, the Buccaneer requires a trailer and winch to be launched. A comfortable cockpit arrangement and simple rigging round out the Buccaneer's design, make it a good day sailer for the family.


  • It's a "sit in" rather than a "sit on" boat.
  • The sloop design includes a spinnaker with launch tube.
  • The waterline is as nearly symmetrically heeled as possible, eliminating much of the weather helm caused by heeling.
  • The wide beam at the waterline plane eliminates the need for a trapeze.
  • The boat's potential performance exceeds that of any non-trapeze design so that it is capable of handsomely rewarding the skills of the helmsman and crew.

Portsmouth Comparisons

Buccaneer 18 87.0 Y-Flyer 86.9 505 80.2 Finn 90.5 Flying Dutchman 80.2 Laser 91.2 Sonar 81 Santana 20 91.3 J/24 81.1 JY 15 91.6 J-22 82.2 Coronado 15 91.8 Thistle 83 Snipe 92.8 Star 83.2 Lightning 88 M-20 Scow 84.1 MC Scow 89.4 Highlander 84.6 M-16 Scow 89.8 Johnson 18 85.7 Flying Scot 90.4

Portsmouth yardstick explanation

Design History

The Buccaneer 18 was designed in 1966 and introduced to the sailing world 1967 at Yachting Magazine's "One of a Kind" Regatta, where it placed second behind a Thistle.

Production history

Chrysler Corporation - 1968 through 1980, hull #1 through approx. #4050. (Just over 4000 boats built). Texas Marine International (TMI) - 1981 through 1982, hull approx. #4051 through approx. #4750. (Around 700 boats built). Wellcraft Marine Corporation, Starwind Division - 1982 through 1984, hull approx. #4751 through approx. #5000. (Approx. 250 boats built). Gloucester Yachts - 1985 through 1986, hull #5001 through #5059. (59 boats built). Cardinal Yachts - 1987 through 2003, hull #5060 through #5065, #5100 through #5106 and #5200 through #5215. (29 boats built). Nickels Boat Works – 2003 through present, hull #5216 onwards. Still under production.

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