Sea Sprite 34 Class

The Sea Sprite 34 is the largest of the Sea Sprite sailing vessels. It is also the last design by Alfred “Bill” Luders Jr. They were built by the C. E. Ryder Company of Bristol RI. The last Hull was produced in 1986. It was christened “Halcyon” and still plies the waters off the Elizabeth Islands and Westport River in Massachusetts.

Sea Sprite 34 “Halcyon”The Sea Sprite 34 has classical lines and a full keel. She sails well even with a following Buzzards Bay chop. In a gale, partially reefed, she easily handles 10 foot seas in West Chop off Martha’s Vineyard.

Typical interior layout accommodates 6. She is a good cruiser. Beamier, but similar to “Dove II”, an Allied Luders 33, another Luders design, which was circumnavigated by a sixteen year old.

The Ryder company constructed them of fiberglass with an Airex core. The deck is through bolted to the hull. The 5000 pounds of lead ballast in enclosed within the 12000 pounds displacement hull. The water and fuel tanks are located below the sole, lowering the center of gravity.

The rigging and spars were provided by Halls Spars of America’s cup fame. The Sea Sprite 34 is easily sailed and cares for her crew.

Overall Length 33′ 10 1/2″
Waterline Length 24′ 0″
Beam 10’3″
Draft 5’0″
Displacement 12,800 lbs.
Ballast 5,000 lbs.
Mast Height 49’1″
Sail Area 524 ft2
Displacement to Length 413.0
Ballast to Displacement 39%
Sail Area to Displacement 15.3
Prismatic Coefficient .55

21 thoughts on “Sea Sprite 34 Class

  1. MIchael G Harris

    I’m interested in knowing more about hull #11 SS34. It has me confused in that it is a modified keel with a skeg hung rudder. Is that really a Sea Sprite? The paperwork I was shown indicates Tom Potter as the designer…more confusion. It has a 15 hp diesel inboard and is sometimes referred to as having a cutter rig (in previous online advertisments), but the owner said that it doesn’t. It seems to be built to Sea Sprite standards and has a CE Ryder Southern Cross plaque on wall at the rear of the cockpit.

    Does anybody know anything about this boat? Are there certain Southern Cross boats with a not-as-good reputation as the Sea Sprites?

  2. Brad Moore

    There are 2 34’s up in Mass. that are seriously for sale. Let me know if you are interested and will contact the owners I know.

  3. Dave McGeoch

    I sail s 1983 SS (Luders) that I purchased at CE Rider & had Shipped to Cherubini Yachts, Delran NJ where she was completed & commissioned Sept 84. While C.E. Rider produced very fine boats, the craftsmanship & techniques utilized by Cherubini Yachts ( far exceeds what a production facility can provide & remain competitive in a particular market. It was Frit & Lee Cherubini who actually steered me to the Sea Sprite and have them finish her. Jen-Sue has taken my family from Block Island to Georgetown, Exuma Islands as well as several springtime cruises to the upper Chesapeake Bay. The beautiful lines of these pretty boats always draws attention. I cannot spend a day on Barnegat Bay (her home waters) without people photographing, giving the thumbs-up, looking back, commenting on her beauty. When on the hard I often find people walking around her, caressing her gorgeous black gelcoat and trying to figure out what she is. Custom built boats are pretty rare in this coastal region. I hope others owners will join the Sea Sprite Association & share their ownership experiences, & modifications. These fine boats are deserving of this attention. Fair winds!

  4. Michael Worster

    I sail a 1984 Sea Sprite (Luders) 34 hull # 13 (owner finished) “Crystal Vision” currently on the Chesapeake. I have sailed Lake Michigan and Lake Erie and a bit of Lake Huron. As you may be aware Ryder did not consecutively number hulls that were factory finished with those that were owner finished. This would imply the owner fished vessel were of questionable virtue. I can only speak for mine and she is finished quite well even if I do say so myself. Her canvas is also owner finished including sails which my wife has done twice. The only thing she did not make was the dodger.

    Sailing on the Chesapeake can be unbearably hot in the summer. Have you ever heard of anyone that has added air conditioning to their vessel? We currently use a carry on but our age is beginning to make that a bit of a chore. Inboard chain plates make adding A/C a real challenge. if you have heard of someone doing it successfully have them send me an email.

    1. joseph molony

      when i bought my SS34, she had “central” built in air conditioning but it was broken and i removed it. the hardest part of installing ac is adding the ductwork by boring through cabinets etc. which steals a fair amount of storage space. And it was only shore power. It takes a lot of juice to air condition a boat underway without a generator. But it can be installed but involves a lot of labor ($$$$).

  5. Ted Parker

    Looking at ’81 SS 34 called SARATOGA berthed in Rock Hall on the Chesapeake. Does anyone have a knowledge of her, or specific comments re an ’81 copy ?? Much appreciatively

    Ted Parker
    Beaufort, SC

    1. joseph molony

      I have hull #3, built in 1983. She is also in rock hall. I love this boat! she has taken me from rock hall to florida and then to bimini and the exumas, and back again to Rock Hall. I singlehanded her at least 95% of the time. She has not let me down once since i’ve owned her, except for my personal errors. I’ve seen the exterior (only) of The SS34 in Spring Cove marina in Rock Hall and know she is for sale. She is not as well equipped as my boat (named Lotus), but I have never heard any negative comments about sea sprite 34’s. Mine has a bowsprit, which apparently has helped her speed due to more genoa area. I have done 7.2 knots on the chesapeake and I was beat by another ss34! She is seaworthy and excellent. In fact, my w ife has living aboard (a bigger boat, alas) after we retire. This from a woman who didn’t like sailing prior to Lotus. So I’m cleaner her up (Lotus) for sale next year. Feel free to contact me if can help.

      1. Ted Parker

        Joe – thanks for your response. I’d like to know a little more about your ” Lotus ” and would welcome pictures as well. Engine, hull, sails, canvas ?? You could send directly to my email if you choose. Thanks

        Ted Parker

      2. Ned

        I, too, am interested in Lotus, and would welcome any pictures you have of her as well as an inventory list if you have one Also, have you established the asking price? Thank you in advance.

        1. joseph molony

          Lotus, my sea sprite 34, is now for sale at S&J yacht in Rock Hall, Md. She is also listed in yacht world.


      3. Steve Files

        I’d be interested in some info and pics of your Sea Sprite 34. in the past we owned a 30 and later a 23. We’ve looked hard for a nice one but not found one up to this point. We’ve been looking at some other 30-35 foot boat and hope to purchase during the winter so we can be ready for the spring. Much of our sailing has been in New England. Steve Files

      4. Ben Lavenstein

        I would love to speak with you about your sea sprite for sale, we live in Maryland one hour and 40 minutes from Rock Hall, could you send me some contact information at your convenience Thanks.

        1. joseph molony

          Hello, Ben. Yes, Lotus is for sale in Rock Hall, MD. through S&J yacht. she is also in Yacht World. You could also call me at 610 756 9251


  6. mike lilliquist

    Dear Mr Tepper,
    Spoke with you last year, concerning “Scrapper” Hull #2, I believe it was built February of 1981, I have spoken with Clarke Ryder and he stated that it was technically a Bill Luder 34 and not a Sea Sprite since it was the first production boat and was delivered to the owner to be finished custom. Sails like a dream but would love to get more information. I do know that two brothers bought the boat in the late eighties or early 90’s, took two years to completely re-do it (bought at auction from a bank after being abandoned on the dry for three years}, there after sailed for two years in the Islands and made it as far as Venezula. Any additional info appreciated. Thanks, Mike

  7. Robert I Tepper

    I own ss34#45 c1984 Second Fiddle sailing out of Point Bay Marina. I have accumulated histories on approx 30 of the 52 believed to have been “set free” . Send me info on yours, others that you know of, or a trade of wives, as mine of 48 years is only interested in sailing as a means to reaching ports with expensive clothing and jewelry stores. My sailmaker will not barter new jib for used clothes. had to name boat as above to prove who or what comes first. Sheryl: “so why have you spent 20 years sanding, varnishing and a box car of money on Epifanes, and nothing toward MY facelift.”. Reply, your transom is better than any built by CE Ryder. Oh! And Sheryl won’t do coves – says they all look alike. So do the outfits! This marriage won’t last another 20 years if she keeps this up. Your advise; Please . Don’t tell me to sell boat and keep wife. Already did that in 1963. — sold my beloved Jet 14 to buy her an engagement ring. Well , the Jet is now sailing in Ohio and we are sailing Vermont’s Lake Champlain. Look for update in 2033 .

    1. Paige Cumberpatch

      Hi Robert,
      We enjoyed both your wit and wisdom in your post! We are the giddy (although undoubtedly naive) new owners of “Aeolus 2” a 1985 Custom SS34 that has spent at least the last ten years on the Chesapeake. She is cutter rig and we have a list of questions longer than Santa’s about her history, maintenance, best practices, etc.! Any advice/direction you could send our way would be most welcome! Thanks! Paige

      1. BRAD MOORE

        To: Paige,

        My friend Julio built Aeolus after helping to build then sail on my SS34 in 1983, “Arabesque” S.Dartmouth, MA
        A few of the factory workers at Ryder built the boat in a driveway in Bristol RI with Julio for Julio (Limonture)
        Julio kept the boat on the Safafras River in brackish water. He cruised New England, loved Newport especially!
        The boat was sold to move up to a 40′ Scepter, Julio always missed the SeaSprite.
        Call me if you wish and I can also get you in touch with Julio (he lives in or near Allentown, PA)
        Brad Moore

        1. Paige Cumberpatch

          Wow ! Thanks, Brad! That explains so much! Aeolus has been cocooned in her boat burqu’a against the harsh eastern winter. She is now renamed “Merike” after our Estonian roots and meaning “from the sea”. We would love to learn more about Julio, Aeolus, and Sea Sprites in general and would be grateful for any further info/contact. Our cell is 443-802-5858. She is moored on the Severn River, just above Annapolis.
          Thanks so much for responding and hope to make contact soon!


        2. Paige Cumberpatch

          Hi Brad,
          Hoping to make contact with you or Julio re: ex-Aeolus, but haven’t been able to reach you via the phone number provided. Would you kindly contact me again at 443-802 5858 or

          Thank you!

        3. joseph molony

          Wow, I live near Allentown, Pa. myself and I have Lotus, my sea sprite 34, for sale in Rock Hall, Md. Call me if you would like. Joe Molony 610 756 9251.

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