The Hunter 39 Sailboat

The Hunter 39, a B&R rigged fractional sloop, was designed by Glenn Henderson and built in the USA by Hunter Yachts.

'Lagoona', a Hunter 39, heading north from Martinique towards Les SaintesThe B&R-rigged Hunter 39

Published Specification for the Hunter 39

Hull Type: Fin keel and spade rudder

Hull Material: GRP (Fiberglass)

Length Overall: 39'4" (12.00m)

Waterline Length: 34'8" (10.6m)

Beam: 12'11" (3.9m)

Draft: 6'6" (2.0m)

Rig Type: B&R Rig

Displacement: 18,077lb (8,200kg)

Designer: Glenn Henderson

Builder: Hunter Yachts (USA)

Year First Built: 2009

Published Design Ratios for the Hunter 39

1. Sail Area/Displacement Ratio: 23.1

  • Less than 16 would be considered under-powered;
  • 16 to 20 would indicate reasonably good performance;
  • Over 20 suggests relatively high performance.

2. Ballast/Displacement Ratio: 31.0

  • Under 40: less stiff, less powerful
  • Over 40: stiffer, more powerful

3. Displacement/Length Ratio: 194

  • Under 100: Ultralight
  • 100 to 200: Light
  • 200 to 275: Moderate
  • 275 to 350: Heavy
  • Over 350: Ultraheavy

4. Comfort Ratio: 25.6

  • Under 20 indicates a lightweight racing boat
  • 20 to 30 indicates a coastal cruiser
  • 30 to 40 indicates a moderate offshore cruising boat
  • 40 to 50 indicates a heavy offshore boat
  • Over 50 indicates an extremely heavy offshore boat

5. Capsize Screening Formula: 2.0

  • Under 2.0 (the lower the better): Better suited for ocean passages
  • Over 2.0: Less suited for ocean passages

read more about these Key Performance Indicators...

Summary Analysis of the Design Ratios for the Hunter 39

1. A Sail Area/Displacement Ratio of 23.1 suggests that, in the right hands, the Hunter 39 will have enough performance to leave most other sailboats of similar waterline length well astern. 

2. A Ballast/Displacement Ratio of 31.0 means that a sailboat like the Hunter 39 (which doesn't have a stiffness-enhancing bulb keel), is likely to benefit from being reefed early to keep her sailing upright in a moderate breeze.

3. A Displacement/Length Ratio of 194, tells us the Hunter 39 is clearly a light displacement sailboat. If she's loaded with too much heavy cruising gear her performance will suffer dramatically.

4. Ted Brewer's Comfort Ratio of 25.6 suggests that crew comfort of a Hunter 39 in a seaway is similar to what you would associate with the motion of a coastal cruiser with moderate stability, which is not encouraging news for anyone prone to seasickness. 

5. The Capsize Screening Formula (CSF) of 2.0 indicates that a Hunter 39 would not be the wisest choice of sailboat for ocean passage-making owing to the lower resistance to capsize in strong winds and heavy seas that is associated with similar sailboats with a CSF of 2.0 and above.

The Hunter 39: Key Features

  • The Hunter 39 sailboat is a modern and sleek boat that features a rugged ocean-going hull that bears the CE “A” Classification. The deck profile and hull shape are sleek and modern, and the extended hull improves sailing performance.
  • The Hunter 39 is a light sailboat that is a very high performer. It is reasonably stable/stiff and has a good righting capability if capsized. It is best suited as a fast cruiser.
  • The Hunter 39 has two cabins with double berths and two heads with shower. The galley is located to port of the companionway and includes a two-burner stove with oven, microwave, refrigerator/freezer, double sink, and plenty of storage. The navigation station is located to starboard of the companionway and includes a chart table with storage and an electrical panel.
  • The Hunter 39 has an in-mast furling mainsail system. The mast is deck-stepped and the boat has an aft cockpit.
  • According to Cruising World, the Hunter 39 is modern in design and clean in execution. It's well worth a look for the owner who wants to take off with family or friends for a weekend, vacation, or longer in comfort and safety.
  • The Hunter 39 sailboat is intended for offshore sailing. It has an easy comfortable motion at sea under sail and performs well in light winds.

Glenn Henderson is a yacht designer from the United States who has designed a number of sailboats that were built by Hunter Yachts. In 2012, the Hunter brand was acquired by David Marlow and renamed Marlow-Hunter.

The company's main manufacturing facilities and headquarters are located in Florida, and additional factories were built in the early 2000s in Connecticut and the UK.

The above text was drafted by using GPT-4 (OpenAI’s large-scale language-generation model) as a research assistant to develop source material; we believe it to be accurate to the best of our knowledge.

Other sailboats in the Hunter range include:

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