Mango Refit?

Carles Dolz

Hello to all!

We are a couple looking for a sailboat to live aboard within some years and perhaps crosse some oceans. Obviously, we have on the radar the Amels, perhaps a Santorin (the SM are a bit of of ou budget).

Some days ago I found an old Mango for sale near home from 1980, and we visit it. The boat is in a better condition than we expected, the wood inside is in good condition, no leaks from the port-holes, some glued carpet in the floors, upholstery old fashioned but in good condition. The deck seems had be painted, the hard dogger is ok... One owner.

Seems as if this boat have with the same equipment from factory: engine is a Perkins, no genset. Old bow thruster type. No furling genoa or main sail, agged electronics... During visit the broker tell us that don't know the boat's history, and nothing about the maintenance, engine condition...(he don't found the engine keys)

The boat have osmosis, I don't know how serious it is. Perhaps I can have a very good discount on his low asking price.

Apart of the osmosis treatment, engine rebuild, and other specialized works, I can make many of the jobs myself.

So, I my main doubt now is if its a good idea to do the refit of this boat or to leave pass and go for a smaller Santorin around 100k €. One of my concern is that I like the easy management of sails on the newest Amels (Santorin) with his furling sails with electric engines, and I don't want to have to go to the mast to control halyards, reefs,..

What do you thing: the Mango is a model that deserve such refit? The furling main sail is a must? Things that I should check before buy?

Best regards


I have Mango number 46 from 1985. The Mango is a great boat and IMHO (I know this will be controversial) the best design that Henry came up with. Yes, they are older boats but if they have been maintained consistently and well and not extensively modified they are great cruising boats. I have lived aboard mine now for 3 + years and she was and still is in pristine condition and has been a great boat.  (ok the hull needs to be painted)

So having said that, Yes a Mango in great shape is a solid boat. However any boat that has been neglected should be avoided. Hire a good surveyor that knows these boats, and go into it with your eyes open and with as much of that particular boats problems identified. Any 53 foot  boat can be a money pit during a refit and repair.
An easy way to rule out a potential boat (before hiring a surveyor) is look at the wiring, bilges and the engine room. If they are not in near perfect order, I would avoid looking any further into any vessel that fails that initial sniff test. 

Just my 2 cents  from a Mango owner.

- Arlo
1985 Mango Hull # 46

Carles Dolz

Thanks Arlo,

I agree mainly with you. This boat isn't updated or upgraded, but don't seems too much neglected.

I' m a bit curious about why you consider the Mango as the best design of Henry Amel, compared to other models of similar size as SM, or others as M or Santorin?

What do you think about the to have a classic main without in mast furling, with halyards, reefs,.. in the bottom of mast?