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Old 29-04-2009, 21:08   #1
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FP Lavezzi - Help!

Hi all,
We are looking to make the move to a multihull and are looking at a 2005 Lavezzi. It has very low hours and wonder what we should be looking for and any pointers on this particular cat. Also looking at a Lagoon 41 and 380 although the FP is at the top of the list right now. We are concerned about some minor gelcoat spider cracks near the port chainplate, especially given the very low hours on the boat. Any insights on this.

Also, anyone know the closest place for a haulout for survey in the St. Petersburg area?

Finally, we have been reading all we can get our hands on, but a lot of the info is conflicting. Any opinions on the Lavezzi compared to the Lagoon 380, which are the front runners in our search right now.

Thanks in advance.

Steve
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Old 30-04-2009, 04:28   #2
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The Lavezzi is a nice boat, the FP cats seem to hold up pretty good. I would be concerned about the cracks around the chainplate though....have them checked by your surveyor very carefully.
I have done some surveys of cats in St. Petersburg and we hauled at a small boat yard up near the Gandy Blvd causeway. I don't remember the name of the yard but you get there by following a channel right next to Gandy Blvd., then go up a little creek a ways. I'm not sure about the maximum beam they can haul, but they might be OK with the 21'-4" beam of the Lavezzi.
Good luck,
Brian
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Old 30-04-2009, 07:18   #3
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Looking at FP Lavezzi - help

Brian, thanks for the tip on the haulout at Gandy. I'll check it out this weekend.

I wonder about the performance of the Lavezzi compared to the Lagoon 380.

Looking at the numbers: The Lavezzi at 40 feet is lighter than the 38 foot Lagoon. Maybe more importantly the SA/Disp of the Lavezzi is about 25.7 with the Lagoon only 17.8. Very curious about their respective performance.

We intend to make the break in the next six months and move aboard full time. Initially cruising the Caribbean and then points beyond. Want to make sure the Lavezzi is up to the job and not too lightly built.

Curious if anyone has sailed both and their impressions. Not trying to start a flame war or anything. We are actually considering chartering both, but are interested in others opinions of these cats.

Finally, for the wife, any difference in seasickness, better or worse, for people with that tendency in moving to a cat from a monohull?

Steve
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Old 30-04-2009, 07:36   #4
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Did a transatlantic delivery on a new 380 several years ago - can't say i was very impressed with it. Slow off the wind and slammed quite badly under the bridge deck when running
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Old 02-05-2009, 17:40   #5
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That is what I was wondering about. The SA/D numbers don't suggest very good performance. I see many use a chute on them, which certainly should help downwind performance. I am also concerned about the performance, if already sluggish, when loaded for extended cruising.
Anyway, thanks for the comments and we will continue our search.

Looked at a Lagoon 41 yesterday that was quite nice, but it had Salomon Technology electrics in it. I'm not sure about that in a cruising boat just yet. Looking around the engine compartments there are an awful lot of sophisticated electronic controls that make me nervous it a remote area with a problem. That said, I am reading up on the technology.

Any others with any experience in the Lavezzi? This is still our primary focus right now. Mostly just concerned about the light weight of the boat. Yes, I know that is what makes it quick, but I'm concerned about it holding up to the rigors of extended cruising. Sort of cuts both ways I guess.

Thanks again.
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Old 02-05-2009, 21:32   #6
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We chartered a Lavezzi out of the BVI's last year named Caribbean Spirit. I thought it was a great boat. No problems sailing, pointed as well as can be expected. The heads are really small and it would be difficult to shower in one. The galley is functional but small also. There really isn't a nav station. But, we sailed in 25 to 30 knot wind with a 10' swell and the boat went through it excellently.

This year we chartered a Bahia and I also think it was a great sailing machine. My 15yr old son and I where able to handle all aspects of the boat without problems. The FP cats are a lot lighter then Lagoon's. I like the level of the boom. It is fairly low on the mast which maximizes the sail area and keeps the mast height reasonable.
Good luck, let us know how you do.
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Old 05-05-2009, 01:48   #7
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We sail a Lavezzi in Hong Kong and there are quite a few Lagoon 380's around. We always outsail the Lagoons by a large margin - they are heavier and carry less sail, so it's really no surprise. I've also noticed we often continue sailing in lighter airs whilst they start motor-sailing.

As to the spider cracks: I've had them in all the boats I've owned and they are typically nothing more than a cosmetic problem. We have them by our starboard chain plate. Gelcoat can fracture under a point load or stress that merely flexes the underlying structural laminate. That being said, you absolutely must have your surveyor check them out just to be sure.

PS - If you can, get the Maestro version.
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Old 05-05-2009, 06:20   #8
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Spent a week recently on a Lavezzi. The better half hated the galley. Lack of storage and bench space. As we are looking for a live aboard this was scratched from the list.

cheers
Craig
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Old 05-05-2009, 10:47   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1960cjj View Post
Spent a week recently on a Lavezzi. The better half hated the galley. Lack of storage and bench space. As we are looking for a live aboard this was scratched from the list.

cheers
Craig
Craig, Nothing cooks like an AGA. But if you're on a boat everything is a compromise...

I'd definitely concur and give it a less than satisfactory in the galley storage department. However, we really do like cooking, but sailing takes precedence.

Anyway, my design weak spots:

1. Anchor locker is OK sized but it's subdivided into only two compartments (chain & everything else) so it's fundamentally useless. I've had a bunch of partitions fitted at nominal cost which have made it damned useful. I'll submit photos for other FP owners under a dedicated thread. C

2. Nav Station: A triumph of non-design. It's a spot with a bunch of electrics and electronics but it sure ain't a nav station. Pencil storage? You'd better bring one of your engineering pocket protectors. My Beneteau 30 had a better nav station with a drawer for storage of pencils and stuff. D

3. Steering console: Stylish yet stupidly dysfunctional. Every 100 x 100mm instrument is occluded by the steering wheel. There ain't no place to fit a decent chartplotter without serious modification. A really, really stupid triumph of style over substance to the point of idiocy. This one takes real work and money to fix. F-

4. As stated - NO f**king drawers. Anywhere. FP seems to have an aversion to drawers (they cost money to install). So, we fitted a few that we need. D

5. Pushpit: Groovy stainless steel design - but where to place a BBQ and store the dinghy engine? Sure it can be done at minimal cost but who the f*** buys a 40 foot catamaran and thinks "Sod the BBQ and who needs a dingy with an engine." What about a place to deal with the fish? C

6. Bimini: Possibly the ugliest piece of fabric / structural union since the fat lady decided to get into a corset and model for Victoria's Secret. Given the generally good design of the hull and superstructure, the bimini is so ugly and stupid it's a marvel of anti-design. It's akin to a top European auto being topped with a crap brolly. F-

7. Electrics: These have been installed in places only accessible to fairies and leprechauns. Is that extra 60cm of wire required to run it to an accessible junction box THAT EXPENSIVE? D

On the good side, she sails very nicely B+ and I've only had to make minor modifications above decks.

I've got a list of complaints, I know. Partly they arise because I'm a designer and often see a rather enthusiastic but fundamentally impractical design in my boat (and other boats too). I think many manufacturers would serve their bottom line and their customers better by building the same damn boat for years on end till it reaches perfection rather than trying to roll out a new model every couple of years. Look at what that's done for the US auto industry...

But I have to be realistic, as do others - I wanted a good sailing boat that would set me back less than $250K. I'm paying cash so I'm not too keen on an elastic budget for what is a rapidly depreciating 'asset' (a boat is never an asset and the term 'depreciating asset' is an oxymoron). The millwork on some other boats is beautiful, but I care about sailing first, budget second and luxury last.

So, all balanced and accounted for, I really like the Lavezzi. Many curses, and things fixed, but really no regrets.

My other boat is a Perini Navi.
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Old 05-05-2009, 11:11   #10
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Nice post Muskoka. Do you feel comfortable with long passages on the Lavizzi? I'm looking at the Bahia primarily but think the concept of 4 heads on a cat is rediculous. The Belize seems to be a nice compromize between the two but literally costs the same as a Bahia.
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Old 05-05-2009, 13:46   #11
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Nice comments all... Muskoka - a couple of follow ups. The one we are looking at is the 3 cabin. I spoke to our surveyor last night about doing a pre survey and specifically discussed the spider cracks and he said, subject to actually seeing them, almost the same thing you did.. that was good to hear. We initially, for a couple of years will be a family of 4 living onboard, probably staying in the Carribbean until last son is in school.Then off we go across the pond.

We didn't care much for the anchor well either. First the problem you mentioned, then the propane storage box didn't appear to anywhere near airtight and couldn't see where it actually vented. Finally, as discussed on this board already the anchor deployment from the bridgedeck seems like it would be a handfull in rough conditions. Also, the door is huge, probably should have been several doors.

Nav station--what nav station. Might just as well admit your using the saloon table and be done with it

Steering console -- have to think about this one a little

Drawers -- wife made the same comment and praised the Lagoon on this point.

Bimini -- concur mostly. Just realized that I don't understand how the bimini attaches over the helm area. It was rolled up there on the one we are looking at. It also has the rigid walkway down the middle of the bimini, but I don't remember how the flap over the helm would attach to the boat. There isn't any framework there to attach the bimini. I'll have to look at my pictures.

A couple of questions, if you don't mind.
Do you have a genset? If so, where is it installed?
Have you done an actual payload calculation on your Lavezzi?
If so, do you see the performance drop off severely at a certain weight range. We have had several people tell us that we should just forget about the performance because anyone truly cruising on a cat as a liveaboard is going to be so heavy that the performance won't be any better than an overloaded monohull.

Have you made any extended passages on your Lavezzi? If so, how did she hold up? Rough weather, conditions, etc.?

Thanks again for the info.
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Old 05-05-2009, 21:23   #12
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Hi All,

Rigamarole: We'll be doing a long passage in about 3 weeks - 600 NM down to the Philippines. I've had the Lavezzi out in some pretty hairy weather in the 18 months since we bought her and I really like the way she handles. I keep the front of the boat feather light and she handles large swells and heavy winds very nicely - she's actually fun to sail!

SteveW: I stand by my criticisms, however, I've got to be clear that what my wife and I wanted was a boat first, and within a budget we felt comfortable spending. In that context, we're happy but I'd have to say that FP really should address the F design issues and give serious thought to the D issues as they are pretty damned stupid design 'solutions'. And I suspect solving them wouldn't add much in terms of production costs. That being said, if we'd wanted to spend an extra $100K we could have had all our gripes resolved for us - and our resolution of these issues has cost us less than $10K so you pays your money and takes your chances!!

Anyway, specifically:

Anchor Well: Now that I've made a few changes I like it (cost $250.). I'll take some photos this weekend and post them. I like the location as it puts the dead load virtually right under the mast which is the best spot on a cat.

Drawers: This is a stupid FP cost saving measure - eliminate all the drawers. Anyway, we've added drawers at a modest cost and I'd stress that it's way cheaper and easier to add drawers to a Lavezzi than it is to put a proper rig on a Lagoon 380 (which I consider wayyyyy under-canvassed given the weight).

Genset: We have a Northern Lights located under the port aft cabin berth. I have mixed feelings about the genset - it works like a charm but I somehow think that having 3 lumps of heavy metal on a sailboat is really dumb. I'd have to say that it seems a cludgy bit of thinking vis-a-vis what is really needed. My solution (when I build my own boat) would lie more along the lines of have a diesel-electric setup which has a massive genset powering electric propulsion and the house loads. Anyway, the Lavezzi has a pretty traditional setup and it seems to work just fine.

Payload: We've got a non-scientific estimate - we're tallying everything up and giving it a guesstimate. Light, light, light!!! That being said, there are just the two of us, and we're sailing tropical waters so we're loaded pretty light. I'm giving very serious consideration to a watermaker which will allow us to shed the better part of 560kg. I know we're crossing the line from light weekend sailing boat to full time laden cruiser but I think we can dump the dead load of fresh water and come out close to even. I want to retain as much of the lightness as I feasibly can. We're still floating way up on the waterline!!

Weather: I've sailed her in some pretty heavy local conditions before and after typhoons and she's a very nice boat to sail. If you keep the bows light (a must) she really is a fun boat and that, IMHO, is what it's all about!

We looked at all the other competitors - Lagoon, Broadblue, Moorings, Seawind Privilege etc. We went to the Southampton boat show 3 times and probably spent the better part of 4 years mulling this all over. We really liked the Privilege and Broadblue but the cost would have been about $100K more and we just weren't prepared to pay that at the time. The Moorings and Seawind made the short-list. The Lagoon seemed to be designed to please non-sailors at boat shows.

In the final analysis it primarily came down to how the boat would sail - SA/D has simply got to be over 20 before I even want to set foot on a boat. I'm buying a sailboat not a floating kitchen. Anything else can be fixed with a modest budget and some DIY skills. And the rest of the compromises I'm prepared to live with.

Anyway, we're still modifying the boat in preparation of our passage at the end of May. I'll shoot some photos in a couple of weeks and post my 'solutions' to some of the items I've outlined in the above posts.

In the final analysis I like the boat. FP have a budget (as do we all) and I think they've put their shoulders to making a good sailboat first, and creature comforts second. In that context I think they have succeeded admirably.

Cheers, Cameron
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Old 06-05-2009, 10:59   #13
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Muskoka,
A couple of more questions came to mind, if you don't mind.
First, the model Lavezzi we are looking at is also a 2005. It seem that in 2006 they changed the opening ports in the sides of the hull to fixed glass, eliminating a lot of the chance for cross ventilation. Has anyone stated why that change to replace opening ports with non opening fixed glass? I believe in Cantor's book, one of his comments is about leaky ports/hatches on the FP's. During inspection we could find no signs of leakage, but we wondering if that is a problem with the FP's.

One other thing that concerns me are the round deck hatches(Goiot). I guess maybe a lot of it just accepting the change from the traditional square hatch. Many times we use a wind chute on our monohull that would be more difficult to use with the round hatch. It also concerns me about them holding up. The hinge area is much smaller than a conventional hatch and there is no sort of support arm on the hatch when opened as in the conventional hatch. I just wonder if after much use the friction in the hinge would keep the hatch positioned where you leave it to force are down the hole. We live in Florida and our cruising will be from here south to warmer (hot) climes and the ventilation is a big concern for us. We have also heard complaints about ventilation on the Mahe.

Thanks for your thoughts and good luck in you upcoming passage. We are also looking forward to the pics you promised.
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Old 06-05-2009, 20:03   #14
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It's similarly hot and humid in Hong Kong. The boat seems to ventilate quite well and we use a sun canopy when moored. It keeps the sun off the aft cabins and seems to force more air through the hatches. We usually don't open the hull side ports.

The round hatches seem to be good quality. The positions are ajar, open or closed as there isn't a support arm. I'm sure you could have a seamstress whip up some wind chutes - I've been thinking the same thing.

One thing we'll be doing is fitting some snap fasteners around the opening to the master cabin and fitting this with a mosquito net.
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Old 13-05-2009, 08:38   #15
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Muskoka,
Good to hear on the ventilation. A very important factor. A couple of other questions if you don't mind.......
Have you installed a freezer onboard? The small refrigerator with a place for a couple of ice trays won't cut it, certainly not in the liveaboard context. We have yet to see a Lavezzi with this addressed.

Also, have you come up with a way to actually have the helm position covered while underway. I really like the hardtops that are on the Leopard 40 and also the Orana. The factory bimini, aside from being ugly, doesn't seem to allow the helm to be covered in bad weather and still be able to see out of the boat. Great design.

Thanks
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