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!!
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
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.