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Old 07-09-2010, 12:37   #16
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A cat is great for a downwind cruise. Most cruising people go downwind.

A mono is great if extended upwind cruising expected. Few cruisers dare.

A cat has bigger cockpit. A mono is cheaper.

Apples are sweet or sour, oranges are orange, green when not ripe.

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Old 07-09-2010, 12:54   #17
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Originally Posted by Reba View Post
Hello all,

For several months, my husband and I have been shopping for our first sailboat. I've posted questions about that process elsewhere. We've been considering bluewater monohull boats in the 40' range to cruise with our two kids for a few-several years.

But then I discovered the catamaran.

I know - this happens all the time. The woman in the crew gets onboard one of these and falls in love.

What I am most enamored with is the open space and light of the salon and the unsinkability factor. Of course, snoozing in the trampoline sounds nice too.

I've searched on this forum and others for the pros and cons of multis vs monos and have found this much out regarding catamarans:

- they don't sink or heel but
- they slap and are miserable to be on in confused seas
- you have to be careful not to become overpowered
- they are expensive.

What am I missing here?
Hi Rebecca

Respectfully, I say you might be missing one thing. Sometimes if we don't know something, we actually don't know what questions we should be asking. I would be asking, What are you intending to do with the boat? I would not like to be crossing oceans in many of the production monos or multis. Your observations about the pros and cons of multi v mono are largelly correct but you can't assume the generalisation is correct for every mono or multi.

My personal preference for crossing oceans is a medium to heavy displacement mono and I am currently building a 42' semi-custom ocean going mono. My reason for the mono is I can't afford a cat that I would be happy to cross oceans in. There are no doubt plenty of great ocean capable cats out there. I just can't come up with the cash. So, as usual it all comes down to money. If I didn't intend crossing oceans there would be a lot more monos and some nice cats that I could afford, If money wasn't an issue, I'd take one of each.

Greg
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Old 07-09-2010, 13:08   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reba View Post
Hello all,

For several months, my husband and I have been shopping for our first sailboat. I've posted questions about that process elsewhere. We've been considering bluewater monohull boats in the 40' range to cruise with our two kids for a few-several years.

But then I discovered the catamaran.

I know - this happens all the time. The woman in the crew gets onboard one of these and falls in love.

What I am most enamored with is the open space and light of the salon and the unsinkability factor. Of course, snoozing in the trampoline sounds nice too.

I've searched on this forum and others for the pros and cons of multis vs monos and have found this much out regarding catamarans:

- they don't sink or heel but
- they slap and are miserable to be on in confused seas
- you have to be careful not to become overpowered
- they are expensive.

What am I missing here?

I should also note that I suffer from seasickness so I have some concerns about being on both boats for extended periods of time.

I know everyone has their own opinion on these so if you know of any unbiased articles or websites that feature this issue, I'd be grateful if you could pass this along.

Thanks,
Rebecca

PS I should say that our budget has been $100K and I realize that there is no way that we are going to get a ready-to-cruise cat for that money. We're willing to try to spend more but $300K boats are completely out of the question for us.
My advice is this: there is NO WAY to understand the right answer to this question for you without trying (chartering) both and seeing how you feel about it. It seems that people are either born mono or born cat. It totally a matter of taste and feeling. There are objective pluses and minuses to both types but I think these are not really very important compared to that subjective thing.

I was born a mono person and so cats just don't feel right to me. Other people love the way cats feel. The thing which really bothered me deep down about the cat I chartered for two weeks was the motion at sea and the lack of heeling response to increasing force on the rig. I would be afraid to get seasick on a cat, while on a mono I have never had a twinge in my whole life. Other people are just the opposite -- happy as clams on cats but don't feel good on monos.

Another tip for you: don't compare length for length between cats and monos. Compare better dollar for dollar. Dollar for dollar a comparable monohull will be longer but with less beam than the comparable cat. The interior volume for comparably priced monos and cats will be about the same, which is not illogical if you think about it.

You say "there so much roomier! But more expensive!" This is a fallacy. For the same amount of money you generally get the same amount of space. That just takes more length in a mono -- since it's narrower! Duh!

Cats have one huge advantage over monos, and that is twin engines, which I greatly envy. That makes cats more manueverable, safer (redundancy), and altogether better motorboats than monos.
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Old 07-09-2010, 13:23   #19
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You can find a "starter cat" for your budget, maybe without all the newer electronics and maybe older but serviceable sails and systems. Then improve it as you go. Our first cat was a PDQ36, maybe not an ocean crosser but many have and still do cruise the caribbean as liveaboards. Some do it with outboards as auxilary engines.

My wife and I both feel really good about having twin diesels as auxilary power in our current cat.
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Old 07-09-2010, 13:47   #20
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Does anyone have a good idea for where we could learn to sail and/or charter a cat for a reasonable amount of money? I can't stomach the cost to do so in the BVIs or other Moorings destinations. Although I agree that we need experience on both, is there any cheaper way to go?

We live in NC...
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Old 07-09-2010, 13:51   #21
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Charter with Sunsail, they are less expensive than Moorings. You can also negotiate the cost of your charter, especially if you go "off season". I have friends who have done this and gotten as much as 20% off the inital public price. All they can do is say no.

Spending the money out of your inital budget to charter a mono and a cat will save you money in the long run. Nothing is more expensive than buying the wrong boat!
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:06   #22
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Actual at-sea cat vs. mono cruising data. Interpret it as you like. What it says to me is that speed differences are negligible. All of them got off their butts and actually went. All but one made it across. I'm sure all had a great time no matter how long it took:

http://www.pacificpuddlejump.com/pdf...ssage-data.pdf

The J-160 and the Catana 50 ($$$) are two of the speedy Cadillacs. Unfortunately the cat didn't report motoring time - which in general needs to be added to the crossing time for comparison.
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:29   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reba View Post
Does anyone have a good idea for where we could learn to sail and/or charter a cat for a reasonable amount of money? I can't stomach the cost to do so in the BVIs or other Moorings destinations. Although I agree that we need experience on both, is there any cheaper way to go?

We live in NC...
We've chartered in the BVI with Moorings for about $4,000 for a week. That included airfare, food and drink too (2 years ago). You just need to find 3 couples to go with you to split the price.
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:40   #24
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We are in a "weekend cruiser from the marina" phase. Cost of cat (capital and ongoing) doesn't make sense for now on an outcome vs cost basis.
When (if) we go extended cruising in our "next phase" I suspect the utility vs cost equation will then favour the cat.
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:40   #25
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Originally Posted by daddle View Post
Actual at-sea cat vs. mono cruising data. Interpret it as you like. What it says to me is that speed differences are negligible. All of them got off their butts and actually went. All but one made it across. I'm sure all had a great time no matter how long it took:

http://www.pacificpuddlejump.com/pdf...ssage-data.pdf

The J-160 and the Catana 50 ($$$) are two of the speedy Cadillacs. Unfortunately the cat didn't report motoring time - which in general needs to be added to the crossing time for comparison.
If you compare like-for-like, cats are not faster. My 54 foot mono is comparable to a 45 foot cat in interior volume and cost. And speed. In fact, I may have a slight advantage in speed. Our boat absorbs power very well and will break hull speed if there is enough wind power (and if she has a clean bottom), and not even only on a run. We saw 13 knots a couple of times on our August cruise in 30 to 40 knot winds, once on a close reach, and we made a lot of miles on a 10 knot pace in strong wind, although theoretical hull speed of our boat is about 8 1/2. Big cats do similar things.
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:42   #26
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We've chartered in the BVI with Moorings for about $4,000 for a week. That included airfare, food and drink too (2 years ago). You just need to find 3 couples to go with you to split the price.
Enjoy chartering! When you own your own boat, you will remember those days with a great deal of nostalgia, what concerns cost. Chartering is vastly superior to owning, financially.
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:51   #27
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We have a social club called the $50 Cruising Club Cruisers & Sailing Forums - The $50 Dollar Cruising Club

Have a look at that and see if you can hook up with a multi sailor for some hands on.
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Old 07-09-2010, 14:52   #28
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please be aware that the mono/multi "controversy" is pretty much confined to the internet.
Actually it's more specialised than that.

Until I joined CF I had not even imagined such a thing, let alone encountered - in real life or internet. But good news is that the "controversy" seems to be restricted to websites or forums with multihull in the title. or own section for.

Kinda bizarre , but I wouldn't let it put OP off.
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Old 07-09-2010, 15:11   #29
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please be aware that the mono/multi "controversy" is pretty much confined to the internet. out on the water, real cruisers could care less about how many hulls you've got underneath you. out here, if the boat is being used, it's cool. if it's sitting around unused, it reflects poorly on the owners.
Actually its pretty much confined to this forum. Not surprising really - usually find that cruisers are pretty much loathe to change, and not very open to new ideas technologies or concepts, not that there is anything new about multis, they predate monos as voyaging devices.
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Old 07-09-2010, 15:22   #30
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If you compare like-for-like, cats are not faster. My 54 foot mono is comparable to a 45 foot cat in interior volume and cost. And speed. In fact, I may have a slight advantage in speed. Our boat absorbs power very well and will break hull speed if there is enough wind power (and if she has a clean bottom), and not even only on a run. We saw 13 knots a couple of times on our August cruise in 30 to 40 knot winds, once on a close reach, and we made a lot of miles on a 10 knot pace in strong wind, although theoretical hull speed of our boat is about 8 1/2. Big cats do similar things.
Depends on the boat.

My boat (Oram 44C) will reach at 13 knots in around 20-22 knots breeze. That's fully loaded for full time liveaboard.

We've seen 16 knots DDW in 25-30 kts breeze, and held speeds of over 10 knots for hours, in around 20 knots breeze.

And there are faster cats than ours. Slower ones too, no question.

THE major advantage cats have IMO - the lack of ROLLING. We've heard mono sailors complain about how terrible an anchorage was - when we - and all the cat sailors in that anchorage - had slept like babies.

Also I'll never forget passing a 45+foot mono sailing DDW north of Great Keppel island - they were rolling violently, headsail backing and filling, slamming loudly, and having a thoroughly miserable time, as far as I could see. And I had a good vantage point, standing on my foredeck, one hand in my pocket, the other holding a cup of coffee.

For any of them to have left their cockpit, they would have had to crawl on hands and knees.

An hour later they were hull down on the horizon, another hour and we could hardly see them.
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