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Old 24-11-2011, 17:54   #1
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Leopard 39 Weight

Hi All

I am looking at cruising cats around 40 feet for cruising around asia and maybe the pacific and the Mrs and I both like the layout of the new leopard 39 (also known as sunsail 38 in the charter fleet). Alot of innovation has gone into the design quite clearly.

Havnt managed to sail one yet and probably wont for a few months till we can get on one of the charter versions for a few days but Im basically wondering what people think of all the weight the boat carries-

ie 9000kg displacement lightship

The sail area at least on the non charter version appears sufficient to cope with the weight at 94sqm but i cant help but wonder why you would build that heavy in the first place when everyone else (barring lagoon) seem to be trying to cut out weight?

The other interesting thing about the boat is the load carrying capacity which is quoted at 4000kg with a 245kg per cm sinkage rate. Im thinking thats pretty damn good for a 38 foot cat right so the hulls also seem to cope with the weight?

Why build so heavy though and are there any advantages to a heavier boat? Does sufficient sail area mean i shouldnt be that fussed about the weight or am i better off looking at 7 tonne boats that dont take as much load and presumably offer better performance?

We are concious of what experienced friends have told us re ensuring we have enough boat to carry all our stuff but at 4 tonnes load carrying thats far in excess of the 3 tonnes im working on as being sufficient for 2.

Havnt had a sensible answer from the slaes dept so over to the experts!

thanks
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Old 24-11-2011, 18:28   #2
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Quote:
Leopard 39
You mean Leopard 37ft 6

Quote:
ie 9000kg displacement lightship
More than my 50fters loaded displacement

Quote:
The other interesting thing about the boat is the load carrying capacity which is quoted at 4000kg with a 245kg per cm sinkage rate. Im thinking thats pretty damn good for a 38 foot cat right so the hulls also seem to cope with the weight?
Read fat and slow hullform

I suspect they are not being built for those that have any interest in performance or sea keeping abilities.

Quote:
Havnt had a sensible answer from the slaes dept
Did you really expect one?
If they told you the truth they would probably have no customers
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Old 24-11-2011, 18:35   #3
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barra View Post
Hi All

Im basically wondering what people think of all the weight the boat carries-

ie 9000kg displacement lightship

The sail area at least on the non charter version appears sufficient to cope with the weight at 94sqm but i cant help but wonder why you would build that heavy in the first place when everyone else (barring lagoon) seem to be trying to cut out weight?

The other interesting thing about the boat is the load carrying capacity which is quoted at 4000kg with a 245kg per cm sinkage rate. Im thinking thats pretty damn good for a 38 foot cat right so the hulls also seem to cope with the weight?

Why build so heavy though and are there any advantages to a heavier boat? Does sufficient sail area mean i shouldnt be that fussed about the weight or am i better off looking at 7 tonne boats that dont take as much load and presumably offer better performance?

We are concious of what experienced friends have told us re ensuring we have enough boat to carry all our stuff but at 4 tonnes load carrying thats far in excess of the 3 tonnes im working on as being sufficient for 2.

Havnt had a sensible answer from the slaes dept so over to the experts!

thanks
Simply designed as a Production/Charter boat. Builders build heavy to ensure it can take abuse and don't spend time to be sure its a light a possible. No different from most similar manufacturers. Now a M& M design built by a custom builder is a different story.

Current design by M&M apparently is better performer than earlier vessels.

I am looking a low volume largish 46ft cat at 6.6T lightship.


cheers
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Old 24-11-2011, 19:18   #4
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

The Leopards sail plan isn't large: 94sm of sail on a 9ton boat won't give you a lot of drive. the other factors will be hull shape (they'll be fat on a 9 ton 39 footer) and bridge deck clearance.

It's all pure physics: High sail area, low weight and narrow hulls go fast. When you bulk up like a lot of the newer cats, speed drops drastically. But then, sailing performance doesn't sell cats-curb appeal does.

Yachting World, December 2011, has an excellent review of the Lagoon 400, FP Lipari 41, and Broadblue 435. It isn't your usual puff-piece and the reviewers opinions range from qualified ambivalence to downright scathing. And the conclusions may surprise some.

I highly suggest reading the YM reviw to anyone looking at cats. Especially if you give a damn about sailing performance.
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Old 24-11-2011, 19:48   #5
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Thanks Muskoka ill check the article out. I dont usually bother with the mags since as you say they are mostly puff pieces to pay for the ads and really only good for the pics IMHO.

Agree 94 sqm isnt large for a 9 tonne boat but it is pretty large on a 38 foot cat!

Understand the hull shape issue and I am definitely in the all rounder camp for extended cruising ie some performance will be nice but load carrying for all the luxuries is important too and i dont want a narrow hull that i know im just gonna sink down while cruising.

Really what im getting at is "does it matter that much for cruising if the boat is designed to be heavy provided if it has the sailpower and hull refinements to match?"

cheers
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Old 24-11-2011, 19:59   #6
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by downunder View Post
Current design by M&M apparently is better performer than earlier vessels.

I am looking a low volume largish 46ft cat at 6.6T lightship.


cheers
Thanks Downunder im also looking at used 42 to 46 ft and around 7t (similar price to a new lepoard) but admit im strugglng with just what that will be able to carry and keep performance respectable.
eg ive looked at used 42 catanas that dry are 7 tonnes and carry just 1.5 tonnes at dwl so i know im gonna be over that from day one.
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Old 24-11-2011, 21:07   #7
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barra View Post

Really what im getting at is "does it matter that much for cruising
Think of it another way
If that exact same leopard 37.6 was built from foam, Kevlar, epoxy and all furniture was done from foam with thin timber veneers, how much better do you think it would sail?
or, how much extra gear again could it carry before it reached DWL?

Quote:
if the boat is designed to be heavy provided if it has the sailpower and hull refinements to match?"
But does it?


I am reminded of a favourite saying from one of Australia's arguably most knowledgeable sandwich builders.

"You cant make a silk purse from a sows ear"
Read into that what you like.
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Old 24-11-2011, 21:28   #8
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

thanks catmando

i think of it this way - if i got an epoxy/kevlar boat id be working another 5 years to pay for it and thats 5 years i could be kicking back on my GRP taking it easy!

ie even if i could afford a gunboat im pretty sure i still wouldnt get one

As to the design of the hull being suitable thats the $300k question eh i dont know but im hoping someone here will
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Old 24-11-2011, 22:24   #9
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

If you built it in almost any non EU fashion it would still be considerably lighter I would imagine.

Duflex, Nidaplast, strip plank Kiri, even a sensible foam core poly sandwich like Kelsal uses will get you a far lighter boat.

Also there is only so much you can stuff into 37 ft and still have it actually perform

It appears to me what they have tried to do with this vessel is squeeze a 45fter into 37.6 feet.

Even my 50fter isnt this fat on or near the waterline
I cant even imagine how it is possible



What else can you get on a longer WLL for the same money?
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Old 25-11-2011, 00:55   #10
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barra View Post
Understand the hull shape issue and I am definitely in the all rounder camp for extended cruising ie some performance will be nice but load carrying for all the luxuries is important too and i dont want a narrow hull that i know im just gonna sink down while cruising.

Really what im getting at is "does it matter that much for cruising if the boat is designed to be heavy provided if it has the sailpower and hull refinements to match?"
I think weight really matters. If you load up a 38 footer with anything close to the 4000 kg she'll be slower than a similarly sized monohull (without the ability to point). And she'll be a beast if you have to deal with any rough weather.

Short of throwing money at the problem, you have 3 options:
1. Pare down what you have to carry, and your luxuries to what the boat can carry. Maybe you don't have your full wish list, but it'll still be comfy and you'll get enjoyment out of the sailing.
2. Buy an older, longer boat which will be less overloaded with the stuff you want to take. Quite frankly, a well maintained older boat is probably no more hassle than a newer boat which has been indifferently maintained.
3. Find a custom build which gives you something lighter and larger with all the mod cons. Or build it like Catmando!!

On our Lavezzi, I think hard before I add something. For example, we built a custom Bimini to replace the ugly factory version. Net gain was 45kg, so I removed one of the extra air cons which weighed about the same. Heavy sliding workbenches were replaced with light glass ones. Old sails are sold and unused cordage removed. Some stuff is unavoidable of course, but you really need to start off as light as you can, and be neurotic about what you add.

Make no mistake, the weight really matters!
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Old 25-11-2011, 07:26   #11
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I own a sunsail 384.(L38)

I have no idea what she weighs but here is how she sails.

On a charter in Greece this October we averaged 7+ knots with 15 knots true on the beam and about 8 knots with 20(1 reef in main)

As a guide, I plan on half the true wind speed.This is without folding props. I also plan on passing monohulls in the 38-42 range as long as I have at least 12 knots apparent wind, up to about 40 degrees apparent.

Overall, this boat sails quite nice as long as you are not smashing directly into the seas. She doesn't like that at all!

On that Greece trip I would figure that we had a load of about 2 tons, including fuel and water.
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Old 25-11-2011, 07:42   #12
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Drunknsailor,

I'm not singling out the 38. My comments are merely to point out that physics prevail.

Add a ton+ of cruising gear to your load and you'd sink 25cm and be lucky to make 5+ knots in that 15 knot breeze. At which point, I do believe the same amount of cash would buy you a monohull which could take the load and manage 7+ knots.

There are a lot of "conventional wisdoms" regarding catamarans which are almost all fallacies. Or marketing BS. They are faster, if unladen. Load em up and they aren't the sparkling performers that the promoters say thy are. I know, I own one and have sailed her weighed down and stripped down. The difference is much more dramatic than it is in a monohull.

And by comparison, we got 10 knots out of my friends Beneteau 50 in 15 knots breeze. On no point were we doing less than 7. With 3 of us daysailing. And his boat cost about the same as a 40 ft multihull.

PS - His is a live aboard, so there's a comparison to make you sit back and think.
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Old 25-11-2011, 08:27   #13
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I agree the monohulls do not have the weight issues that we do, but they heel and have other issues so I will stay with my 2 hulls.

I regularly sail 2 cats, the L38 and the bigger 46. I will concede that as a cruiser, the smaller catamarans lose their performance advantage quite rapidly. If i had 400k(approx. price of new L39), to spend on a cruising cat again, i would buy a bigger, secondhand cat as opposed to a new smaller one. In fact, when we finish our charter contract, we will seriously consider upgrading to a bigger boat(I really like the L46) for that very reason.

The point I was trying to make is that for a small, production cat, the l38/39 is a reasonable performer. I have not sailed against the Mahe 36 or Athena 38,(I suspect they might be quicker) but I have comfortably passed lagoon 380s and 400s. This is of course, charter trim against charter trim. I would suspect similar results if both boats were at their DWL.

Getting on a plane in the morning to go sail my boat in Phuket so I will bow out for the night!
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Old 25-11-2011, 11:14   #14
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Enjoy Phuket Drunkensailor!

Back to it.... With cats it's weight, weight, weight. Ours is supposedly 6.2T with a 90 sm sail plan. Well, we bought used and quite frankly, by the time you've added genset (not me! The previous guy), aircon (I've sold one out of two, my mate on a Lagoon 38 has three), and fuel and water and stuff you're up nearly 2 ton metric.

If you stop there you'll occasionally have a great sail. Except that the way they're all rigged is rubbish.

In the final analysis, cats can really be fun to sail, but the hype is overblown. Most of the modern offerings are so heavy they'll be pigs on the water. That is just the simple physics.
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Old 25-11-2011, 13:08   #15
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Re: Leopard 39 Weight

Forgive my inexperience but an Otremer 49 lists:

- Displacement: 9,5 T
- Main sail: 92.50 m2

Is this the light weight or the max/total weight or is displacement something different?
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