Originally Posted by Latchdaddy
Just a note to say thanks Helia 44 for this thread. As a new FP 40 owner, it is my intention to reference all these lessons learned as I (we) put together the options list.
My hope is FP is paying attention to the quality comments made here and occasionally respond. Has there been any feedback - as a rule
I do know AYC, the FP dealer in the USA, monitor
this site but to date I have not come across the actual manufacturer responding. Do they issue Engineering Bulletins or similar to FP owners?
Thank you for the kind words of appreciation LatchDaddy.... It makes my efforts seem worthwhile, and not just wasted time.. Thank you, keeps me going...
here, in the Great Barrier Reef
islands, currently anchored a Stonehaven anchorage on Hook Island in the Whitsunday group.. Possibly headed out to the atolls of the GBR as there are light winds tomorrow.
You have brought up a touchy point, so let me dance around it a little so no one gets their feathers ruffled. The French have a unique way of doing Business, so much so
that picking your "Dealer" becomes a VERY important issue.
Here goes and you may have to read between the lines a little:
The French do not want to deal with the Public. I am told by many that they are extremely difficult to get custom features out of, outside of their normal tick the boxes forms. Behind in their Schedules and a big Order Book, this might be an appropriate Business model for them. However, worse than that is their way of handling Warranty issues. They do monitor this Forum, and this Post, as there has been feedback, but not directly to me. If there are Warranty issues, many have told me that it can take months to get action out of F.P. and I mean literally months and months, as if
they try and wait out the poor Client to desperation to get it done themselves. This has been so common I am told from many People, that the Dealers often take on the Warranty rectifications on themselves and gamble that they will get reimbursed by F.P. at a later date.
Now this is NOT a bad reflection on F.P.
I mean from year so talking with other Owners, F.P. are about the best of the lot, a step well above Lagoon
IMO having looked at Engineering and Design, and a step below the strength and build of Catana
(but I am too old for the outboard
helms of Catana
and want the better creature comforts of the F.P.) Having qualified this answer, I must comment that it is not a Manufacturer thing, it seems to be a French thing.
It is as if they stall and are really slow to act, to literally whittle down Warranty work by way of attrition. Myself? I have not had any real issues, but I do not agree with that Business Model, and think Fountaine Pajot should light a fire under their Warranty Department.
I personally think it is unacceptable from what I have heard from other Owners.
It is a definite credit to Multihull
Solutions, that they take a positive proactive response and act on the Owners behalf... Rather than the French Business model, they stick in the Western Business model to get the Owners taken care of in a timely fashion. Then in the long protracted French way of Business they wait it out for them to hopefully reimburse them for their expenses. I would do Business with Multihull
Solutions again, and no I do not find the French model on Warranty responses adequate.
Latest improvement suggested:,
(I do not know if I covered this one in this Topic, just in case it is my gift to you):
If you want anything more on your mast
than the normal wind instruments and VHF
normal Coax, you need a better conduit system in the mast
. The F.P. (possibly Z-Spar) system is woefully inadequate and waaay too light.. At one year old, the stock conduit failed and was in a jumble at the bottom of the mast with each short section opening up jamming onto the other in a heap with the entire contents clanging around inside the mast. I had to dismast the boat. The new conduit from F.P. was short sections of very light plastic about 1 mm, sliced longitudinally, that slipped over a rib
in the mast extrusion. I have an added internet
antennae on the top, and heavy shielded coax that was added so I have extended internet
range to talk with my Office Staff managing things back home, as I am not going to retire. No questions please on my Business, I am not going to retire as I have people that have been with me for 16-17 years and I have no confidence in this extended GFC not over yet, that the Business could survive without my Engineering and Legal
guidance. The Internet is important at least once in a while is important: Anyway the stock conduit collapsed in a heap. In any case, I think it is woefully inadequate and you should upgrade it.
F.P. were slow to respond, and there was secondary rumbles that it was outside of their design, and the added weight of the heavy coax was the cause. Hmmmm.. In my Engineering opinion it was just way to light. The fix is quite simple, about 40-50 mm white PVC pipe in 20' sections, run through a table saw to cut a slice in it... With the mast down, it was split on the end and started up the extrusion on the inside of the mast with the split running over the T shaped extrusion on the inside. You can push it up a short way but: It eventually gets too hard to push, so you end up hammering it up with a block of wood, and the next two bits of pipe as well pushing the other sections up. The PVC pipe is in far larger sections, and probably about five times as strong as the original very light flexible soft tubing that actually collapsed on itself.
To be fair this is only here to help you, if you have any reason to dismast, take it upon yourself to upgrade this if it has not been done already.
To be fair it might not even be an F.P. issue, but Z-Spar their Rigger. Anyway, maybe this will filter down to them. I am a pretty fair Marine
Engineering sort, and used to be in the Business long ago.
And once more, in the Southern Hemisphere, "Multihull Solutions" are the best to deal with that I have encountered. Before Sales, they are all good. It is the "After Sales Service" that is the most important.
Possibly by design, in a nutshell, the French do not want to deal with the Public and use the Dealership Network to buffer themselves. From our end, that is not a good thing, but it might be a very good functional outcome for them. Personally, I may be in the Market for a larger Cat.... This would be one of the reasons I might look at the Leopard 48 from an Engineering perspective as well as a Saba 50,
both in the Owners Layout model (not multi cabin charter
Additional Improvements coming up:
1) The big Genoa
"Screecher" is too hard to furl when on the take utilizing the Harken
46 on the Port side. You need two winches in weather
over 15-18 knots, one to furl when under heavy wind load while the other manages the sheet on that tack...
2) Feeding the sheets
on the Starboard side up to the winch
island on the helm
is functional, but nasty in medium weather
. You need another Harken
46 on the starboard side in the same position as stock, out on the end of the starboard cabin
roof. Then in my case, a zip up in the window of the clear on the cockpit
enclosure... AND I am considering more power winches as the only one now is the Main Halyard winch
. It is a only a Harken kit that can convert the standard Harken to power.. They are all made for the upgrade.. Easier for single
handling, and the winch handle pushes down a pin that automatically disengages power to revert to two speed winch anytime...
3) The Windlass
that comes stock, the Loffrans Caiman, is a bit light when anchored in deep water
(now in 50') with all chain rode
. I am going to upgrade to the "Tigress" the next size up in power. The rode
is right, 3/8" (10mm high tensile) Armagal chain, but the power is a bit light and the windlass
is working. The "Tigress" is about 500 watts more powerful...
Kind regards, from "Avalon" which is probably the most well equipped Helia 44 in the world... All this luxury is loading her up, I may need a bigger boat... heh he....