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Old 19-03-2012, 05:25   #31
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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Originally Posted by LifeJacket View Post
We just closed on a Leopard 46. At the risk of stealing/drifting the thread ... below are some of the reasons we chose what we did.

Our list of boats in consideration were:
- Lagoon 44
- Lagoon 42
- Leopard 47
- Leopard 46 (obviously)
- Leopard 44 (note: did not sail but will mention why we crossed it off the list below)
- Bahia 46

We decided on the 46 for a couple of reasons over the others.


Fair winds,

Rustin
Hi Rustin - I would be interested in what your thoughts were on the Leopard 47 which although on your short list you did not mention it in your summary. To my thinking it meets every one of the items you liked on the 46 & I personally like it's helm setup much better - see my clip on an earlier post on page 1.

Thanks.
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Old 19-03-2012, 06:53   #32
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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Originally Posted by Ozbullwinkle View Post
Hi Rustin - I would be interested in what your thoughts were on the Leopard 47 which although on your short list you did not mention it in your summary. To my thinking it meets every one of the items you liked on the 46 & I personally like it's helm setup much better - see my clip on an earlier post on page 1.

Thanks.
We did like the 47's. The admiral likes the finish of the 46 more and I liked the 46's hard bimini. I actually looked into a company in Tortola that is putting hard bimini's on 47s (getting to the boom and having a place for solar was high on my list). The biggest issue I was having was finding one that after retrofit wouldn't cost more than the 46 (used). Obviously not all the retro would have needed to be done at the same time but very often the engines were shot, electronics were fried, etc. etc. This was on boats that were coming out of 2nd and sometimes 3rd tier charter operations mainly in the BVI some in St. Martin. The wear and tear on these boats was significant and that was truly the main reason we went ended up looking at newer boats. But overall I really like the 47 and how she sails: solid, fast, no slamming, etc. Also as I mentioned earlier, the "livability" was critical to us and the 47 def had that and the 46 just improved on it (in small areas).

I don't mind the 46's and 44's mid-up helm (as compared to the Lagoon's UP helm) and don't mind the Leopard 47's (or Lagoon 38's) lower helm. I get your point on breaking up the lines of the boat ... to me this was not a deal breaker.
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Old 19-03-2012, 08:02   #33
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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Originally Posted by LifeJacket View Post
We just closed on a Leopard 46.

<<<<BIG SNIP>>>>

The bottom line is I haven't found a perfect boat (that I can afford) yet. It is all about compromise and for us the Leopard 46 fit the bill. My overall opinion of the Leopard boats is they are well thought out from a sailing AND living perspective and the Leopard 44 was a close second in our final list of boats with the Lagoons trailing.

They are all great fun and we are all blessed to enjoy being able to compare such great boats.

Fair winds,

Rustin

WOW love that post however i would love to hear more about how well she sails the L46 is top of my 'sensible' list IF we buy a cat for sure it looks good to me NOW please list what you dont like about her

thanks in anticipation
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Old 19-03-2012, 08:08   #34
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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We did like the 47's. The admiral likes the finish of the 46 more and I liked the 46's hard bimini. I actually looked into a company in Tortola that is putting hard bimini's on 47s (getting to the boom and having a place for solar was high on my list). The biggest issue I was having was finding one that after retrofit wouldn't cost more than the 46 (used). Obviously not all the retro would have needed to be done at the same time but very often the engines were shot, electronics were fried, etc. etc. This was on boats that were coming out of 2nd and sometimes 3rd tier charter operations mainly in the BVI some in St. Martin. The wear and tear on these boats was significant and that was truly the main reason we went ended up looking at newer boats. But overall I really like the 47 and how she sails: solid, fast, no slamming, etc. Also as I mentioned earlier, the "livability" was critical to us and the 47 def had that and the 46 just improved on it (in small areas).

I don't mind the 46's and 44's mid-up helm (as compared to the Lagoon's UP helm) and don't mind the Leopard 47's (or Lagoon 38's) lower helm. I get your point on breaking up the lines of the boat ... to me this was not a deal breaker.

The L47 is a slug in light winds a very 'sticky' boat seems one of the reasons you chose the L46 was its light wind performance (probably a function of its slim hulls with a chine above the waterline for interior volume). For sure my admiral want to see where she is going IF we had a cat and the helm behind a bulkhead just turns her off cats big time.
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Old 19-03-2012, 15:19   #35
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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I kept thinking how am I going to make sure the kids keep the door dogged so that a rogue wave doesn't soak the interior).
The door opens outwards. Only likely to soak the interior if left open underway. Dogging will stop any potential leaks.

Dave L38 #38
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Old 19-03-2012, 18:30   #36
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As a leopard fan myself I can add a couple of comments:

Davits- I currently have a new 38 with the electric Davis like the 44. They are very nice and the biggest plus is that my wife can pull the dinghy up all by herself. However, there are two big minuses of this setup compared to the setup of the 46. The first is the swinging dinghy issues that have been mentioned before; the davits creak a lot when pulling the dink up in any sort of swell. The second is that you have this aluminum bar(the davits) at neck level when trying to board/offload passengers or when attaching the dinghy to the davits. This is a safety issue and is really the bigger of the two downsides. All things considered I much prefer more conventional setup of the 46. My wife disagrees.

L44 vs L46- I have sailed the 46 regularly and she is by far the best sailor of the current range. The 44 is two tons heavier on 4 feet less waterline with approximately the same sail area. The numbers don't lie!! The forward cockpit is really nice on the 44 but it costs a lot, the extra weight and the less livable salon being the biggest detractors. That being said, the storage in the 4; is better thought out, especially in the cabins. The 46 wastes lots of space down below. Even with that flaw, the 46 still gets the nod in my book.

All things considered, the 46 is a better product!

For a little boat though, my 38 and the new 39 get very high marks as well but that is another thread!
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Old 26-03-2012, 15:17   #37
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

We are planning to charter a leopard 44 in the BVI and I am hoping that one of you could let me know how big / comfortable the v-berths are for children (8 and 12 year olds) as they look pretty small on all the photos and videos I can find.

Our alternative is to return to the leopard 46 we chartered last time...
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Old 24-05-2012, 02:46   #38
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

You cant go wrong with a Leopard Catamaran built by Robertson and Caine, Some interesting facts,1. They celebrating their 1000th boat being launched this June. 2. Most of these boats being delivered on their own bottoms around the world. 3.With most of these boats in charter all Leopard Catamarans is designed according to the charter clients feedback and experience. 4. Leopard Catamarans offer well designed and comfortable yachts to sail without sacrificing sailing performance. I've been looking for a well equiped, easy to sail, fast cruising, well priced 44ft, Ive sailed all the yachts in this range and decided on Leopard. Really taking on the catamaran market by storm. Visiting the Cape Town Sales Office soon to put in my order.
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Old 24-05-2012, 05:56   #39
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I have delivered three of the L44's from Cape Town - one to Turkey, one to Tortola and one to Lorient, France. That forward cockpit took plenty of water on the delivery to France and suffered no adverse affect. We had constant waves breaking over the starboard bow all the way from the Azores until the day before we arrived in Lorient. The cockpit drain handles the drainage quickly and efficiently. I just wish I had a "Go Pro" camera with me so that I could have shown how efficient it actually works.

The boat was also well loaded with both diesel and water tanks full and an extra dozen 30 liter diesel cans aft of the cockpit. She sailed well and we actually averaged just over 7 knots over the entire trip, arriving at our destination two days before we had planned - with the weight we had on board I was planning on averaging only 6 knots.

For those thinking on the L46, alas, as far as I am aware, the last one is out of the factory and should be on delivery. However, there are two new models in the making, both I am told designed by Simonis, so watch the press for when they are launched!

John
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Old 24-05-2012, 17:52   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnT
I have delivered three of the L44's from Cape Town - one to Turkey, one to Tortola and one to Lorient, France. That forward cockpit took plenty of water on the delivery to France and suffered no adverse affect. We had constant waves breaking over the starboard bow all the way from the Azores until the day before we arrived in Lorient. The cockpit drain handles the drainage quickly and efficiently. I just wish I had a "Go Pro" camera with me so that I could have shown how efficient it actually works.

The boat was also well loaded with both diesel and water tanks full and an extra dozen 30 liter diesel cans aft of the cockpit. She sailed well and we actually averaged just over 7 knots over the entire trip, arriving at our destination two days before we had planned - with the weight we had on board I was planning on averaging only 6 knots.

For those thinking on the L46, alas, as far as I am aware, the last one is out of the factory and should be on delivery. However, there are two new models in the making, both I am told designed by Simonis, so watch the press for when they are launched!

John
John your miles speak for themselves and I would never question your knowledge but in the name of disclosure how long would you remain leopards main delivery guy if you came out and said in public "the new 44 was terrible the forward cockpit a joke way to heavy forward and a tiny sail plan?"
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Old 24-05-2012, 21:00   #41
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I am actually no longer delivering the Leopards and, as I type this, I am waiting in Fort Lauderdale for a weather window to depart on a delivery of a 53 foot privately owned cat to London, UK. If I wanted to "grind the ax" with them, I could. But why, when the boats are generally pretty good for a production product and sail very well. For a first time cat owner, they can be an ideal boat. Like every new model that comes out of any factory, there are always teething problems and R&C have always acted on the delivery captains feed-back after a delivery to rectify problems and generally improve the future boats. The L44 is now around hull 40 and there have been many improvements since the first hull was produced about a year ago, making it a good, safe product. Everybody has their likes and dislikes on the various models produced by the various manufacturers around the world. I may not get on with the person running the delivery company, but that does not mean I think the boats are bad. I have delivered cats from a number of yards around the world - some I would not deliver again and others I thought were exceptional and really enjoyed sailing. The Leopards are not the Rolls Royce of catamarans and have never been advertised as such. They are well constructed boats - maybe their "look" is a bit different from what you may think a boat should look like, but then everybody to their own! The question that my previous post was answering was regarding the drainage of the forward cockpit and that was what was answered, truthfully, and from experience from sailing one in horrendous conditions from the Azores into the Bay of Biscay, with tons of water breaking over the entire boat every few seconds, for days on end! And at the end of the day the boat was in pristine condition on the show in Lorient - it did not sink, did not have its windows blown out or anything else. The only repair that was needed was that a roller on the saloon sliding door needed replacing.
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Old 25-05-2012, 15:43   #42
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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I am actually no longer delivering the Leopards and, as I type this, I am waiting in Fort Lauderdale for a weather window to depart on a delivery of a 53 foot privately owned cat to London, UK. If I wanted to "grind the ax" with them, I could. But why, when the boats are generally pretty good for a production product and sail very well. For a first time cat owner, they can be an ideal boat. Like every new model that comes out of any factory, there are always teething problems and R&C have always acted on the delivery captains feed-back after a delivery to rectify problems and generally improve the future boats. The L44 is now around hull 40 and there have been many improvements since the first hull was produced about a year ago, making it a good, safe product. Everybody has their likes and dislikes on the various models produced by the various manufacturers around the world. I may not get on with the person running the delivery company, but that does not mean I think the boats are bad. I have delivered cats from a number of yards around the world - some I would not deliver again and others I thought were exceptional and really enjoyed sailing. The Leopards are not the Rolls Royce of catamarans and have never been advertised as such. They are well constructed boats - maybe their "look" is a bit different from what you may think a boat should look like, but then everybody to their own! The question that my previous post was answering was regarding the drainage of the forward cockpit and that was what was answered, truthfully, and from experience from sailing one in horrendous conditions from the Azores into the Bay of Biscay, with tons of water breaking over the entire boat every few seconds, for days on end! And at the end of the day the boat was in pristine condition on the show in Lorient - it did not sink, did not have its windows blown out or anything else. The only repair that was needed was that a roller on the saloon sliding door needed replacing.
Hahaha Funny. I met a delivery guy in mid delivery of a L44 and said the absolute opposite! Said he would never deliver again and the worst sailing boat he ever delivered, took him twice as long as planned as the boat couldn't point. And many serious repairs. Said it would be fine as a local cruiser but would never take it bluewater cruising and was very worried if the boat would make it. I saw some of the damage first hand but not about to get into it on here.
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Old 27-05-2012, 18:36   #43
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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Originally Posted by JohnT View Post
I have delivered three of the L44's from Cape Town - one to Turkey, one to Tortola and one to Lorient, France. That forward cockpit took plenty of water on the delivery to France and suffered no adverse affect. We had constant waves breaking over the starboard bow all the way from the Azores until the day before we arrived in Lorient. The cockpit drain handles the drainage quickly and efficiently. I just wish I had a "Go Pro" camera with me so that I could have shown how efficient it actually works.

The boat was also well loaded with both diesel and water tanks full and an extra dozen 30 liter diesel cans aft of the cockpit. She sailed well and we actually averaged just over 7 knots over the entire trip, arriving at our destination two days before we had planned - with the weight we had on board I was planning on averaging only 6 knots.

For those thinking on the L46, alas, as far as I am aware, the last one is out of the factory and should be on delivery. However, there are two new models in the making, both I am told designed by Simonis, so watch the press for when they are launched!

John

John,

out of interest what size are the foward cockpit drains
as sounds as if they are adequate.

cheers
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Old 21-09-2012, 08:58   #44
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

I'm a newbie to cat sailing, but chartered the L44 out of Tortola this past April.
One observation re: the forward cockpit. 5 knots of wind in the harbor created 10 knots of wind through that front door. The whole forward cockpit becomes a windscoop when that door is opened, and this adds to the liveability in the tropics. We saw a lot of cats that seemed to be buttoned up with A/C running -- but not us. This added to the comfort in the rear cockpit too (and the hardtop contains a large hatch over the table in the rear cockpit to bring down that breeze as well - a nice feature).
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Old 21-09-2012, 10:17   #45
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Re: Any Leopard 44 Owners Out There ...

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Originally Posted by LifeJacket View Post
We did like the 47's. The admiral likes the finish of the 46 more and I liked the 46's hard bimini. I actually looked into a company in Tortola that is putting hard bimini's on 47s (getting to the boom and having a place for solar was high on my list). The biggest issue I was having was finding one that after retrofit wouldn't cost more than the 46 (used). Obviously not all the retro would have needed to be done at the same time but very often the engines were shot, electronics were fried, etc. etc. This was on boats that were coming out of 2nd and sometimes 3rd tier charter operations mainly in the BVI some in St. Martin. The wear and tear on these boats was significant and that was truly the main reason we went ended up looking at newer boats. But overall I really like the 47 and how she sails: solid, fast, no slamming, etc. Also as I mentioned earlier, the "livability" was critical to us and the 47 def had that and the 46 just improved on it (in small areas).

I don't mind the 46's and 44's mid-up helm (as compared to the Lagoon's UP helm) and don't mind the Leopard 47's (or Lagoon 38's) lower helm. I get your point on breaking up the lines of the boat ... to me this was not a deal breaker.
We are closing on a 2009 Leopard 46 next week, coming out of Moorings service. Rustin gave an excellent overall description of why the L46 seemed superior to the other boats we looked at. For us, there was no question, best livability, design, sailing ability, and finish for a production cat, and best suited for our plans to charter it a while and then cruise.

Other differences to the Leopard 47: engines on the 46 are outside the cabins in separated aft compartments (the L46 engine rooms are huge and easy to work in), better designed and more spacious galley in the 46, better chart table in the 46 (facing forward, wide seat and table). I actually like the mid-up helm seat location and set up better in the 46. In comparison, other boats with bulkhead steering felt like looking through a tunnel between the bimini and salon top. It became the most popular location for us while sailing the boat. If you buy one, definitely get a 2009 or later with the steps up from the cockpit for easy access.

I love the huge heads and separate shower stalls, but as already mentioned, 4 will be too many when we start cruising. Easy to remedy. The only other minor nuisance is having to raise the main at the mast, but that can also be remedied. Others have led the main halyard to the helm seat.

Our boat is going into charter for several years until we can retire and start cruising. It will be with Pro Valor Charters in Tortola. If you're interested in trying a 46, it is the best priced 46 in the BVI!

Rob
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