1972 Columbia Sloop

US$ 125,000
Wilmington, CA
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Interested in this boat? Tel: 310-547-8007
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Engine/Fuel Type:
Single / diesel
Located In:
Wilmington, CA
Hull Material:
Current Price:
US$ 125,000 

The Columbia 50 was built by Columbia yachts  between 1966 and 1972. This Bill Trip Classic sloop was by far the best built and designed of all the columbias. Sixty six of these fine racer cruisers were built durng the time of construcrtion. The were the darlings of this circa by the racing groups, and brought home the silver for race oriented owners . As a racer, the Columbia 50 captured some noteworthy victories, such as winning her class in the 1966 Chicago-Mackinac and first overall in 1967. She also won her class in the 1967 TRANSPAC and Newport to Ensenada races. Steve Dashew was one of the early owners of a Colombia 50, and cruised her seriously, and even wrote cudos for the performance of these yachts in one of his early books before he became the Guru of Alloy sail and power yachts.  classic beauty, exceptional comfort, and race performance made this design a success. . PHRF rating is thought to be 96.

One can expect a truly stable and highly performance oriented cruiser that can perform well against many more modern cruisers, even some racers. The yacht featured in this specification sheet has been kept in excellent condition by the live aboard owners. The exteriior is high gloss with good protection from sumbrella  sun shades, the rigging and spar show well, but the interior is the true beauty that makes this boat stand out from the rest. There are 10 different exotic woods used to assemble an artfull blend to  traditional craftmenship. These woods include; Black Walnut Wood, Hardwood Maple, Purple Heart Wood, Koa Wood, Paduk Wood, Red Oak Wood, koko Bola Wood, Blood Wood, Mahogany Wood, Zebra Wood. The interior is a wonderland to the traditional wood lover, and a combination of modern technology blended with almost bygone craftsmanship. A true symphony of balanced woodwork.


Richard “Dick” Valdes founded Glas Laminates, a fiberglass contract company, in 1958. Among the early products were camper shells and producing canoes for Sears. The company eventually focused its development expertise on sailboats and became Glass Marine Industries (GMI), marketing their boats under the Columbia nameplate. Early models included the Columbia 24 and Columbia 29 (Sparkman & Stephens design). By 1964 company sales passed $2.5 Million.

In 1965, GMI changed its name to Columbia, and introduced the Columbia 50, at the time the world's largest fiberglass production sailboat.  During the mid sixties Columbia produced a few motor yachts.

By the late 1960s,the company was the world's largest fiberglass sailboat manufacturer with manufacturing plants throughout the world. Valdes sold the company to Whittaker (listed on the NYSE), but continued as president of the subsidiary Columbia Yacht Corporation, and helped to develop Whittaker Marine Group, which ultimately included Bertram Yachts, Trojan Yachts, Riva, Desco Marine, Kettenburg, Balboa Marine, and Coronado Yachts. Total sales of the Whittaker Marine Group reached between $250 and $350 Million in the early 70's during Valdes' tenure. A side note is that Frank Butler, the owner of Coronado Yachts came into Whittaker with the merger, but left about a year later to form Catalina Yachts.

Following Dick Valdes' departure from Columbia Yachts in 1972, the company offices and plant were relocated to Virginia, and eventually sold to Hughes Boat Works in 1979, and later to Aura Yachts in 1982. In the mid-80's, Hughes regained control of the company. Eventually, the Columbia Yachts brand faded into history.

Columbia Yachts Today

In September, 2001 the new Columbia Yacht Corporation was incorporated, with Dick's son Vincent Valdes as President and CEO, co-founder Justin Wallin as COO and with Dick Valdes among the founding directors. The new company’s first offering is the Columbia 30 sportsboat, designed by Tim Kernan, with a Southern California OWC PHRF rating of 51.

The Columbia 50 was introduced in 1965 for delivery in 1966. The Columbia Yacht Corporation first-half financial report notes that six of the new sleek 50's were sold prior to her debut in 1966.

"Among the new yachts in construction, the Columbia 50—designed by—Bill Tripp, will be one of the most luxurious ocean racing-cruising yachts afloat. This new flagship of the Columbia line will be launched in January 1966. Her first racing engagements will be the 1966 Southern Ocean Racing Circuit and the Acapulco Race. Already six Columbia 50's have been sold at a base price of $50,000 (without sails)"
-Columbia Yacht Corporation 1966 Annual Report

The Columbia 50 captured some noteworthy victories, such as winning her class in the 1966 Chicago-Mackinac and first overall in 1967. She also won her class in the 1967 TRANSPAC and Newport to Ensenada races.

The Columbia 50 has achieved classic status and today has an enthusiast website devoted exclusively to her at columbia50.com. She was an outstanding example of blending comfort and performance, and therefore was one of Dick Valdes' favorite Columbias.

  • Length Overall 50' 0"
  • Length Waterline 33' 3"
  • Draft 6' 6¾ "
  • Beam 12' ½"
  • Displacement 32,000 lbs.
  • Ballast (lead) 14,600 lbs.
  • Sail Area 977 sq. ft

Facts about the designer, Bill Tripp Jr.1916 - 1977

  •  Bill Tripp spent his childhood on the water sailing and racing in boats his father designed. Bill’s father, William H. Tripp, Jr., designed such well-known yachts as the Bermuda 40, the Block Island 40 and the Columbia 50. “Tripp Design is a team of Naval Architects, Engineers and Project Managers specializing in the design and engineering of modern yachts and is noted for its winning race boat designs that have participated in such challenging venues as the Fastnet, Hobart, Bermuda, and IMS Championships among others.  Our collaboration with structural engineers, boat yards, design houses, mast makers and hydrodynamicists has fostered development, synergy and expanding views in design, technology and performance.


     It should be noted Steve Dashew chose the C50 to circumnavigate the world with his family.


  Contact Kelley Bourland at kelley@heritageyachts.com 

   or phone Kelley at 503-780-4439

Please contact at 310-547-8007

Interested in this boat? Tel: 310-547-8007

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