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What's My 27? – The Hull Identification Number
If you are in any doubt about the Mark and building date of a C&C 27, the Hull Identification Number (HIN) provides a simple and authoritative source for the serial number assigned to your boat and the year and month in which it was moulded. With this number in hand, you can use the information in Evolution to determine whether it is a Mark I, II, III or IV. You can also tell from this information if you have a Mark V, though the Mark V is such an utterly different boat that you should have no trouble discerning which is which (see the Guide, at left).
HIN's were mandated by the US Coast Guard for all boats sold in the US after November 1, 1972. The main justification for the HIN is to identify boats involved in safety recalls (remember, the late sixties, early seventies are when governments realized that death was rather an extreme penalty for a poor purchasing decision and began enacting safety regulations). Unless there are structural reasons not to do so, the HIN should be placed on the starboard side of the transom within two inches of the top, and that is where you should find it on a 27.
That said, there may be examples where this is not so. On some of the earlier Mark I's, which pre-date the requirement for an HIN, the only number is on a stamped plate at the aft end of the cockpit. A recent discussion described a builder's plate stamped "CC27 13 71", an inscription that almost certainly means that this Mark I was built as C&C 27 hull number 13 in 1971. Numbers on boats built late in 1972 should conform to the HIN format. There have been reports in the Forum of missing numbers. It is possible that the moulded number has been obliterated by repairs or an attempt to deceive as to the age of the boat; there is also some doubt of at least one contributor's ability to locate the transom.
Before August 1, 1984, the format for the HIN was as follows.
Month of Model Year
Therefore, this is a C&C (ZCC), a 27, hull number 863, hull moulded in May, 1980. In addition to the ZCC Manufacturer Identification Code prefix (the Z in the MIC identifies the boat as from a non-US builder), C&C also possessed a CCY prefix for boats built at the Rhode Island plant. It's known that some early 27's were built by Hinterhoeller Yachts in Niagara-On-The-Lake and there were variants built under licence in Europe (we have two examples in The Fleet), but otherwise and as far as is known, any boat sold as a Mark I to IV C&C 27 was built at the C&C plant in Niagara-On-The-Lake (other than a very few early boats built by Hinterhoeller Yachts).
The C&C 27 Mk V was built in Rhode Island as well as at the Niagara-On-The-Lake plant. The Niagara-On-The-Lake plant (ZCC) numbered its boats from 001, while the Rhode Island plant numbered hulls from 501. This has left some people wondering how a boat with a number in the 500's could be produced before a boat numbered below 100, but as long as you remember the geographical split, it all works out.
After August 1, 1984, the HIN format changed slightly.
Month of Model Year
This information is correct for C&C 27's and boats of that vintage. Note, however, that apparently the HIN system has become greatly confused in recent years. A description of the problems is outside the mandate of this site, but a lot of apparently sound information is available from organizations like BoatUS.