Sturdy, comfortable blue-water cruiser for sale

Personal circumstances have made take life an expectant turn which means a farewell to boat-life for a while, for us. We were ready for the Atlantic – and so was Happy Dancer, our Moody 425 and home over the past two incredible years in the Med. For whoever lucky person, couple or family picks this great deal up, I’m sure she won’t disappoint, but on the contrary, surprise her new owner(s) as she often did us with her safety (Moody’s reputation – read more below and on the fantastic Moody Owners Association website which has proven invaluable through friendship and support), comfort (comfortably sleeps six, four of us lived on her, three bedrooms, two bathrooms – plenty of space for guests, including their own bedroom and ensuite) ease of sailing (despite her over 10 tonnes, Happy Dancer usually hits at least 5 knots cruising speed in 10 knots of wind – and loves it when it blows. Seven sails, included in the inventory plus a massive array of spare parts, tools, gadgets, safety gear and not to mention our super HonWave dinghy with almost new outboard and new anti-foul good for at least two seasons, we were assured when putting it on in Turkey only a month ago). More details and pictures below. Email us with more questions if you are interested.

General Comments

Initial Reasons for buying a Moody

We searched the boat market intensively for a safe boat suitable for comfortably living. The typical well-known mass product boats were off our list from the start as experience showed they were not built to a blue water sailing quality which would make our young family feel safe at sea.

We were pretty set on a centre cockpit to provide extra safety for the kids and a larger owner cabin for us. Moody, a well known brand baked by renowned designer Bill Dixon, was high up on our list and the 425 convinced us for various improvements that had been made from its predecessors (422), including two extra bunks (out of a total of eight) in the starboard walk through (which allows us to have guests in the en-suite forward cabin or even an extra hand for a crossing, should we need it) and a comfortable sugar-scoop swimming platform astern. An average hight of 2m around the boat’s interior allows us to move around comfortably and safely. 116 of this type were built between 1988 and 1991 through Marine Projects, Plymouth.

The fact that Moody is a well-known and trusted cruising boat brand, not only helps to keep the intrinsic value of the boat, but also comes with the advantage of finding advice and spare parts easily and a very active and supportive owners association. Our’s comes with a complete inventory of all upgrades, maintenance and improvements that have ever been done on her, including the contacts of all previous owners!

Reasons for selling the boat

Life has sometimes a different agenda. For personal reasons we decided to postpone any sailing plans for the near future.

Previous history of Happy Dancer

We are the fifth owner. Initially Happy Dancer was owned by an English couple in England for the first 5 years after registration which was sailed in England waters only. Then in 1995 an experienced english Sailor bought her and sailed her in the English Sea and also crossed the Atlantic with her. This person lived on the boat for several years and maintained her very well. We have a booklet on board which contains all the maintenance which was executed. Nearly every change of a screw is documented.

Then in 2004, an Italian sailor and professional skipper bought Happy Dancer also for a long journey but failed to leave as he was lacking the financial resources. During the phase of ownership Happy Dancer was lightly used, mainly for day trip fishing tours as he was an enthusiastic fisher-man.

In 2010 Hapy Dancer was sold to a German sole owner who transferred her to Greece, she was used during the summer (May – October) and lifted out during winters and stored on land. He spent approximately 3 months each year on the boat sailing in the Aegean Sea until we bought her in December 2013.

HD Layout

General condition of the boat

Happy Dancer is in very good condition. When we bought her we were thoroughly impressed by the quality of the woodwork inside and also the conditions of the hull itself. Of course she is not a new boat but with respect to her age she looks very good. The underwater ship has received a preventive Epoxy treatment (this is undocumented and we believed the statement of the previous owner who believed the previous previous owner plus our pre-purchase survey). She has absolutely no signs of Osmosis. The last anti-fouling was applied in August 2015, which was done by ourselves in a boatyard in Turkey. We put 4 layers of anti-fouling so it should last for the next year or even two without any problems. During this haul out, we have also replaced 3 seacocks which were looking tired (the rest are in good working condition and were all checked and re-greased) and a new cutless bearing was fitted to the prop-shaft.

The motor is still the original Thornycroft T98 (56 hp) which is a marinised Ford 1.6 Diesel engine . The motor hours read now 5200 hrs approx. The engine was extensively overhauled by a previous owner at an hour reading of approx. 4000 hrs. Since then regular maintenance like oil change, filter change etc. was executed every year. During the last 2 years the main maintenance for us was the overhaul of the cooling system. The motor runs and sounds excellent and we never had any problems with it at all. Due to the center cockpit lay out the motor can be accessed from three sides allowing comfortable work. Impeller change for example is a very easy exercise compared to many other motors we have seen.

HD Master Bedroom HD GalleyHD Saloon

Sailing equipment, rig and halyards

Happy Dancer has pretty comprehensive sailing equipment. She has an additional cutter rig, which can be stored away very easily if not needed.

  • Furling Genoa, approx. 55 m2, new in March 2013
  • Working Jib on Cutter stay, 35m2, new in March 2013 and used exactly one time
  • Working Jib on Cutter stay, 25 m2, in very good condition. I used it once in strong winds
  • Storm Jib on Cutter stay, age unknown but in excellent condition
  • Furling Main Sail, age unknown. Condition very good. Still doesn’t show any sign of being tired, this year we decided to reinforced the leech with an extra layer of sail and the reinforcing patch of the clew was re-stitched by a friend and professional sail-maker in preparation for our planned Atlantic crossing.
  • Gennaker approx.. 120m2, age unknown, very good condition, very lightly used.
  • All running goods (halyard etc.) new in 2012
  • The standing rigging is in very good condition. The thickness is double to what is specified. No signs of rust, always looked after and regularly checked by us and paid professionals carefully.


Ground tackle

  • Windlass Maxwell HRC 10/10 new in 2010, remote control operation and also control panel in the cockpit.
  • 25 kg Delta Anchor with 73m chain (10mm). Our main anchor, we never dragged at anchor, tested up to 45 knots gusts in Greece’ meltemi the last two summers, where other boats were dragging.
  • 1 Back up anchor 35 kg Fortress and 10m chain and spliced 18m nylon rope
  • 1 Plough anchor

Navigation equipment

  • Garmin GPS (age unknown)
  • VHF radio (Lowrance, age unknown)
  • HAM Radio, Pactor modem (I believe it is Pactor 3, but I am not sure), Icom antenna tuner, no antenna. Originally there was whip antenna installed which I cut off.
  • Compass (new installed in 2014)
  • Furano Radar, age unknown, still the old one with the green screen works perfectly. Great piece of kit! Sender mounted in the mast.
  • Navtex weather

All navigation equipment works reliably. The pieces are not new, but work. I do not like too much electronic on board, We we use Navionics on our iPad for navigation and always have paper charts (available upon request) as back-up.

Week 1 Kilada_226

Sailing Instruments

  • Nexus speed, and depth and wind new in 2012
  • 2 Nexus multifunctional displays in the cockpit, new in 2012
  • 1 analog Nexus wind direction display in the cockpit, new in 2012
  • All instruments are interconnected which each other via a mini bus system
  • autopilot

Power and batteries

  • 3*200 Ah Rolls batteries, new in 2012, (wet batteries)
  • Victron battery monitor, new in 2012
  • New engine battery installed in 2014
  • 3 Solar Panels at 55Wp each, aged 1999
  • Charger for the solar panels, Votronic 320 Duo Dig including display for Total A, actual Ah, Actual W, Total W new in 2012
  • Wind Generator D-400 (2004) and charger (2004)
  • Mastervolt 220V battery charger 15 amps
If you are thinking about placing panels on your boat, here are helpful instructions to help install solar panels on a boat.



  • Brand new original sized, stainless steel upper lifelines, 2015
  • Fridge with freezer compartment
  • Fuel tank new 2012, plastic with big inspection hatch, 265l capacity
  • Two Aluminium water-tanks holding a total of 450l of fresh water and linked to the watermaker for top up
  • Honwave TI-38, high pressure floor, new in 2012
  • Tohatsu 5 hp, 2007, excellent condition as new, serviced in 2015
  • Plastimo offshore life raft for 6 persons, serviced until September 2016
  • EPIRB new in 2014
  • 4 adult lifejackets, 3 of which automatic, plus 3 lifejackets for children if wanted (including 1 automatic 3-6 years)
  • Electric 12v pump for emptying diesel tank
  • Spare parts and lots of bits and pieces
  • Bow thruster, in good working condition, oil changed in August 2015.
  • Schenker watermaker model 30 (2008) with new membrane worth 300 EUR which needs installing
  • We have the following equipment that can be negotiated with the price:
    • Yellowbrick satellite tracking system (new 2014) valued 400 GBP
    • Fishing gear new in 2014 including rod and reel valued 300 EUR (We catched 4 big tunas with this gear which fed us for four days each!)
    • Modem Router for wifi internet on-board (unlocked for any world sim-card) plus dual antenna valued 200 GBP. Provides wifi on board with any data sim card!

Porto Heli_276Final comments

Happy Dancer is from our point of view ideal for blue water cruising and for someone who wants to live aboard. She is safe and comfortable and will give you all the trust you want from a boat. The only extra we were still considering of adding for an ocean crossing is a windvane, but that’s of course a very personal choice. Else, she is ready to go anywhere.

She is ashore in Malta where to you can fly from almost any main European city. The airport in Malta is a mere 15 minute taxi ride away from Manuel Island, where hotels and rental apartments are also nearby.

You can find a bit more info still on our Boat page and of course by scrolling through this blog documenting our journey since leaving Sydney, finding Happy Dancer and moving on board.

If you respond to this ad you are buying directly from the owners. We are happy to engage a broker to formalize transactions if you wish.

Asking Price: 69,000£


  1. Sorry to hear that, but also very excited for continuing, albeit slightly different adventures for you and your wonderful family. We understand completely, life has thrown us a fairshare of curve balls this year as well!

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