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Old 15-03-2010, 20:05   #1
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Sailing Around the World

My wife and I are planning on a 2-3 year adventure of sailing around the world. We have narrowed our search for a yacht to two monohull and one multihull vessels. We are novice sailors at best, countless hours with an instructor but never in the true “sea environment”. We are 33 and 34 years of age and are extremely excited to begin our adventure.

Given that we have chosen two monohulls and one multihull for this exploration, and knowing that we have sailed both monohulls and multihulls in training and loved both, our problem is deciding which would be the best suited for the journey ahead. The three boats in question is a Beneteau 58, Jeanneau 57, and a Lagoon 500. Our budget is $1.5 million but will consider going higher if the vessel is right for us. Any advise would be greatly appreciated…
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Old 15-03-2010, 20:18   #2
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Really, with a $1.5 million budget those three boats are the best you can come up with?

If it's just the two of you, I'd go smaller and bring a lot of champaign and caviar.

As far as the three, I've only been on a Lagoon 500 and would be worried about the helm position in a gale. If you like that much room and want a new boat, look at the St. Francis catamarans. They are the best, IMO.
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Old 15-03-2010, 21:33   #3
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Really, with a $1.5 million budget those three boats are the best you can come up with?

If it's just the two of you, I'd go smaller and bring a lot of champaign and caviar.

As far as the three, I've only been on a Lagoon 500 and would be worried about the helm position in a gale. If you like that much room and want a new boat, look at the St. Francis catamarans. They are the best, IMO.

I don't think we are supposed to link to other forums but you may want to have a quick glance at [something posted about St. Francis cats on another forum.]

It may change your mind about St Francis catamarans.

As a less experienced sailor, you may want to look closely at cats. Cruising boats are a series of compromises. The mono's mentioned would probably be faster than the cat and perform better. The cat will carry more, and a Lagoon will be very roomy indeed. Having said that, it will probably not perform as well in certain wind situations.

I am in a similar situation to you, Less experience in sailing off shore and large boats, I am looking at a catamaran. For my tastes, a cat will work better for me, more room, better stability. Just remember, everyone will have an opinion. Define your needs, your desires, your route and then decide on the boat.
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Old 15-03-2010, 21:50   #4
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Any cat over 50' becomes difficult to single hand, I'm not saying it can't be done. I'm 39 and am planning a similar adventure for 5ish years with my girlfriend who will only be on the boat half the time. I'm on a much smaller budget but looked at a FP 56 like Palarran has (I decided on a 46' Bahia). The larger Fountaine Pajot Eleuthera 60 is in your price range and I think a couple people here have them that live on them in the caribbean. You might want to do a search and PM them.
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Old 16-03-2010, 07:48   #5
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For a couple who are cruising with two to four occasional guests, the Bahia is an awesome platform. The reason I didn't go with one is that we are planning on having a minimum of 8 and up to 12 guests on board for almost 6 months straight. With such a big budget you could outfit one in real style.

The person referenced with the St. Francis seems to be unlucky with boats. I seem to recall he had to sue his last builder, totally trashed another on this forum (whether deservedly or not, I don't care), and now is freaking out on his SF. I have followed Randy Abernethy on Swinging on a Star and he doesn't have the same problems.
Swingin' on a Star

Another SF that is for sale right now is Ovive. I believe they are asking a couple hundred k to much but it is a nice cruising boat. 2007 St Francis Catamaran For Sale

The Eleuthera - wow - that's a nice ride.
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Old 16-03-2010, 08:43   #6
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We had a Tayana 58 which is similar to your monohull choices. Lived on it for 18 months with my wife and I was able to do all the sailing with just the two of us. We handled the boat pretty easily except for a few tasks like taking the main off.

We chose a Chris White Atlantic 57 for our next boat and are in the build process. Even with the extra hull and large rig, I think the cat will be easier for us to handle. Things like launching the dingy off the aft deck with dingy hoist make those tasks much easier. There is a big difference between a production cat like a lagoon and a semi-custom boat like a Chris White. IMHO, the later is designed for a circumnavigation and the former for cruising the BVI and Caribbean with lots of guests. Both would of course work fine but if you really want to circumnavigate you should consider a boat designed for the task that you can maintain easily. I'm not positive, but I think the interior volume of the lagoon is larger than an A57 but more importantly the number of toilets, pumps, systems etc, are greater and therefor more effort to maintain. Enjoy your selection process. I took me over a year to finally make a decision. If you decide to pursue an A57, mine will be complete this summer and we likely won't be able to sail around the world for several years. If you want to get a jump on it, make me an offer.
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Old 16-03-2010, 22:33   #7
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I have been following the build of Agility's Atlantic 57. He has a website that discusses some of the equipment decisions he has made and shows the various steps of the build. This is the boat I am also considering. Actually, it is the only boat I am considering so far, although the Nexus 600 has caught my eye. Just not sure about the company, being so new. I just have to find the time to charter one of the two that are available to charter so I can get to learn more about the Atlantic 57.

One of the factors that appeals to me is that the designer, Chris White seems to be very involved in the build of each boat.

Agility, did you get to charter an Atlantic 57 before you made your decision?
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Old 17-03-2010, 02:15   #8
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I have a 34 footer for sale which I could do for around $1.5m , or more if you wish.
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Old 17-03-2010, 09:32   #9
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Did I charter a Chris White before I chose one? Nope.

How did I choose an A57?

I was thinking about that in the shower this morning. My boat and most of the decisions were made in collaboration with this forum. Thank you Cruisers Forum.

I like to contemplate many different options and my basic design criteria was that I wanted a boat with the ability to cross large oceans with comfort and the ability to outrun really bad stuff as well as comfortably sail the rum line in strong gales. Of course, it had to be able to be sailed short handed, fun, strong, low carbon footprint, good resale value and a bunch of other stuff.

My first love was based on all the Catana 47's that I saw on the water when I was cruising in the Med and Caribbean. I really liked that boat and I really liked several of the owners.

Catana 472 was my first love but then they came out with the 52. I liked this one but it didn't seem to get much traction in the market and so I broadened my horizons.

My dad had a small FP so I looked hard at them. The Eleutera 60 seems like a really nice boat but once I took a hard look it was way more volume than I wanted and seemed too big. I never got to sail one but that led me to the Lagoon line. I really liked the Lagoon 420 hybrid for a long time. The ideas behind the hybrid propulsion got me excited but the more I read the more concerns I got about the new technology. I keep that lust of electric motors for another year or so and Chris finally convinced me that hybrid tech was not the best place to be a pioneer for a circumnavigation. I also got comfortable that if the cat was light enough and well canvassed that I could sail her harder and faster than another could motor so why bother. I still like the 420 and checked them out at boat shows but the sailing characteristics left me wanting a little more. I checked out the 440 and the Lagoon 500. I really liked the 500 for a while. More than you could ever need, very comfortable, quality brand, etc. I stood on top of the raised cockpit and felt like I was on a 747. It's a bit strange sitting up there, some really cool aspects but ultimately it seems much more like something for an extended vacation than living aboard. For chartering and partying in the BVI the Lagoon represented a full on boat orgy, but once again I got wandering eyes after spending some time in and on top of one.

I had a quick exotic affair with African Cats. From a design perspective, it had everything I really wanted. I still think there is great promise in their design but I won't comment on other potential issues as that has been covered extensively. I also didn't like being with a virgin built and it seemed a long way away from the US.

I considered the Alibi as an interesting innovation real head turner but again, early design for a circumnavigation seemed too risky and while very cool, it was very early in their life so hard to know what I would get unless highly involved in the design process.

I then went to my third Annapolis boat show with the goal of seeing the new Catana 50 and the Chris White A55. I wasn't really thinking the A55 was sexy and I didn't research them much but heard from a few folks on this forum that it was a cruisers cruising catamaran.

I went to the show, disappointed with the Lagoon 420 because it wasn't working and they were not going to be available for sea trails. (Maybe that was the year before). I did however get an appointment to ride the Catana 50 and the A55. The Catana was like a pin up girl, a really lovely lady. My wife also really like the interior and the commodious layout. During the sail we took a slow ride in very light winds but I had a couple issues that turned me off. First, there was a story about the big genoa busting loose on the delivery. The sails looked huge and not as shapely as I had hoped. The performance was OK but the helm was also a bit sluggish and it felt like a really big lady. That was all OK but when sitting at the aft helm the visibility was poor. You have to get up to see 360 degrees and we almost ran into another boat. I really don't like to have to stand and walk around to see 360 degrees.

I sailed the A55 the next day and it reminded me of sailing a beach cat. The helm was feather light. She accelerated on small puffs of wind and while sailing next to the Catana we literally blew by her. Before sailing we sat in the salon with the doors open and felt a cool wind tunnel of "air conditioning" on a hot day with relatively little wind. I could go on and on about the pure joy I felt sailing the Chris White Design but needless to say I was in love and this time it was for real. Chris took me to the Aquidneck yard the next day and having read his book on cruising catamarans I felt very comfortable that I understood the build process so I decided building a cat was really not more risky than buying a production boat. I choose the Alwoplast yard because they had really made a commitment to the A57 having built molds and had a bunch of hulls under their belt before starting mine. They have made numerous small improvements in each build and I'm confident that mine will be the best boat yet.
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Old 17-03-2010, 17:50   #10
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Thanks for the insight into your decision making process. I find it interesting that while I don't have the same level of cruising experience as you, we have been attracted to similar cats.

I have an order into Chris for his book and look forward to reading it. I am about 12-18 months away from a decision and while I have been to a couple of boat shows, I have yet to deep my toe in the water too deeply. I have yet to see anything that has excited me enough to get past my interest in an Atlantic 57. I did have a look at an Atlantic 42 once when I was on a bare boat charter and was very impressed.
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Old 20-03-2010, 17:26   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbarclayjust77 View Post
My wife and I are planning on a 2-3 year adventure of sailing around the world. We have narrowed our search for a yacht to two monohull and one multihull vessels. We are novice sailors at best, countless hours with an instructor but never in the true “sea environment”. We are 33 and 34 years of age and are extremely excited to begin our adventure.

Given that we have chosen two monohulls and one multihull for this exploration, and knowing that we have sailed both monohulls and multihulls in training and loved both, our problem is deciding which would be the best suited for the journey ahead. The three boats in question is a Beneteau 58, Jeanneau 57, and a Lagoon 500. Our budget is $1.5 million but will consider going higher if the vessel is right for us. Any advise would be greatly appreciated…
With that sort of budget and time, I think you couldn't do much better than one of the CW designs. Why? Simply because he has designed these boats with circumnavs in mind. Working with Chris, you will get an idea of which yard can build the boat with what options and for what price.

In the meantime, you should also take the time over the next 2- 3 years to get some sailing time so you can appropriately assess the risks you will undertake, AND (perhaps more importantly), assess the opportunities for personal growth along the way.

Fair Winds,
Mike
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Old 20-03-2010, 19:11   #12
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...and now for a completely different opinion. If you are goal oriented, as I am, and your goal is "a 2-3 year adventure of sailing around the world" consider this. Select an existing equipped cruiser that is approximately close to your idea of what you want. 'd err on the simple side so you don't become a boat repair specialist. Start your journey. At some point along the way you can trade hulls. There is no way you will be able to choose the right boat now AND start your adventure. You'll be stuck in boatyard purgatory for 2-3 years.

That's what I did. I cruised a boat for 3 years that was basically suitable but obviously less than optimal. But at least I left cruising the day after early retirement. Now I've traded up to the boat I want. After the 3 years of sailing, meeting other cruisers, sailing with them, seeing how they live, there was exactly one boat I wanted. Problem solved.

[The comment above about saving some of the budget for champagne and caviar is a really good idea. Especially so for us visitors along your route.]
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Old 20-03-2010, 20:47   #13
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My wife and I are planning on a 2-3 year adventure of sailing around the world. (...) We are novice sailors at best, countless hours with an instructor but never in the true “sea environment”.

(...) Our budget is $1.5 million but will consider going higher if the vessel is right for us.

Any advise would be greatly appreciated…
My piece of advise - spend a small percentage of the 1.5 mio on hiring/buying/renting a boat similar to what you want for the big trip and go for a short, but seriously offshore sail in her.

E.g. if you are on the W coast go say to Hawaii and back, to EU if you are on the E coast. Such a short trip will give you experience and clarify your prioritities for the target boat.

My thought, not advice, is: I do not know about multis, but with 1.5 you can get a quality mono rather than a quality mass production mono.

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Old 20-03-2010, 22:51   #14
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If you are only going to do a two year circumnavigation, you might want to consider doing a charter that lasts two years, and not have to deal with the hassles of yacht ownership.

One of the most enjoyable ways to do a circumnavigation is to purchase an around the world airline ticket to all the greatest sailing destinations in the world. Pick the top thirty sailing destinations, and fly there to do a charter. It would be a lot easier, probably cheaper, and maybe even more enjoyable as you wouldn't be saddled with taking care of a yacht.

Almost everywhere we went on our circumnavigation, there were yachts for charter. Why not charter your way around the world?
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Old 21-03-2010, 13:43   #15
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Maxingout - good point. Who loves to sail, will go sailing, who wants to visit the amazing places may do just this as well on a plane and charter there. I agree it might be cheaper too.

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