February 16th 2017. By Zuzana Prochazka.

Blue Chip II: Classic Kettenburg PC-32

This Pacific Class one-design by Kettenburg offers an unusual opportunity to acquire a classic racing sailboat.

There’s hardly a sailor for whom the name Kettenburg doesn’t evoke images of graceful lines, billowing sails and a race to the finish line. Restoration buffs and nostalgic mariners have saved many of these beautiful boats, which spark any sailor’s imagination. Lucky for them, here’s another example of an original that is still racing today.

Blue Chip II is hull number 78 of the Kettenburg Pacific Class.

Blue Chip II is hull number 78 of the Kettenburg Pacific Class.

This one-design model was originally commissioned by the San Diego Yacht Club and the first one was delivered in 1929. Over the next 30 years, 83 hulls were built of mahogany on oak by the Kettenburg Boat Works. The line was designed by Geroge Kettenburg, an avid racer who nonetheless created a boat that a family could easily handle off the racecourse.

Blue Chip II was launched in 1948. She is a fractional sloop with a graceful sheer and long overhangs. With a length just under 32’ and a beam of just over six feet, Blue Chip II exudes the sleek sophistication of designs of decades past. The listed sail area is 385 square feet. Add a spinnaker for downwind work and this boat will fly. Her hull was splined and she has been raced extensively in San Diego in a still-active fleet of her peers.

Many of the original PC-32 hulls were raced across the Pacific to Hawaii and some never returned from the islands. Others have moved up the coast of California and into the state of Washington. The fact that they’ve survived the test of time explains why there is such an active interest in these models, and why they continue to have a healthy presence on the starting line.

According to the comprehensive Kettenburg Boat Works Owners Association website, Blue Chip II was once owned by a member of the Kettenburg family. She is berthed in San Diego and while the classic beauty is in need of a full restoration, she’s quite capable of speeding toward the finish once again. If graceful wooden sloops light a fire in you, this one is for sale.

See the Blue Chip II listing.

Zuzana Prochazka
Zuzana Prochazka is a writer and photographer who freelances for a dozen boating magazines and websites. A USCG 100 Ton Master, Zuzana has cruised, chartered and skippered flotillas in many parts of the world and serves as a presenter on charter destinations and topics. She is the Chair of the New Product Awards committee, judging innovative boats and gear at NMMA and NMEA shows, and currently serves as immediate past president of Boating Writers International. She contributes to Boats.com and YachtWorld.com, and also blogs regularly on her boat review site, TalkoftheDock.com.