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Old 16-09-2009, 10:09   #1
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Catalina 400

I'm wondering what everyones thoughts on the Catalina 400 are..

I happened to see one in a slip at different marina then I normally go to on the lake yesterday. It looked ultra sexy & something about it caused me to instantly be in lust!! After talking to a buddy of mine that is a broker I found out that it won't be long before that boat is going up for sale. I plan to coastal cruise the islands for a few years then also circumnavigate. So, should I get it out of my head or is it something I should consider? The price is going to be fairly acctractive..
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Old 16-09-2009, 10:51   #2
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The biggest knock on this boat is the lack of storage.
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Old 17-09-2009, 17:50   #3
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We have 2 friends with this boat in Corpus Christi. Both LOVE their boats. As long as it's a coastal cruiser you are looking for, it will work. One of them races his ALL the time. Did the Clearwater to Isla race not too long ago. Not me...
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Old 23-03-2012, 13:40   #4
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Re: Catalina 400

Been sailing hull #210 for the last 11 years. She's been a fine sailor from Maine to the Georgetown, Exumas, BI. Storage can be a problem but I have the rare 3-cabin version and I use the starboard aft cabin for most of my storage needs. She's well balanced in almost all conditions and with AIS, autopilot and radar, she's been great on those overnight passages from P-town to Bar Harbor, Mystic outside to VA Beach, around Hatteras, down the east coast and from Great Sale Cay to Port Canaveral. We worked the bugs out of her the first two years out of the factory when she came to us with rudder bearing problems and misaligned steering cables. Also had some minor port/hatch leaks all resolved. Add air conditioning and a genset and you've got a fine live-aboard vessel (with limitations of course). Taking her to Isla Mujueres, MX from Key West very soon. Enjoy your future C-400...
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Old 25-03-2012, 02:43   #5
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I have Hull #147 and have been modifying it for a dream of blue water passage. I was glad to hear of your travels in her since the boat is usually considered in these threads as a coastal cruiser. This is something I never really understood since the more shallow coastal waters are in many ways more dangerous than the deeper blue water that most speak about. On the northern west coast of the US, the bars make the idea of making port in bad weather somewhat of an oxymoron. Regardless, I was glad to see a response to this thread almost 3 years after the previous posting and would be interested in hearing from more catalina 400 owners.

Gary Cecchi
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Old 27-03-2012, 09:59   #6
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Re: Catalina 400

My folks have owned Hull #156 for the last 6 years. They just sold it and will have a new boat delivered in June (Delphia 47). I have sailed the 400 extensively on Lake Michigan and find that it sails well in all conditions. My only gripe is that it is rather sluggish at initiating a turn at slow speeds in the marina. I've learned to approach the last turn into the slip a little hotter than I would in other boats. This may be due to the winged keel. Many are a fan of the large aft cabin bit I think it is a waste of space. There is an active Yahoo Group for 400s if you want more input from owner.
--Glenn
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Old 14-12-2012, 23:22   #7
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Re: Catalina 400

We own #277. For us it is perfect. Sails well, large cockpit and cabin for entertaining, and the aft cabin is just what we want. We sail between Santa Cruz and San Francisco. The boat handles really well in winds in the 20 knot range. Storage is limited, but we make do.
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Old 29-12-2012, 00:47   #8
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Re: Catalina 400

Quote:
Originally Posted by msw611 View Post
Been sailing hull #210 for the last 11 years. We worked the bugs out of her the first two years out of the factory when she came to us with rudder bearing problems and misaligned steering cables. Also had some minor port/hatch leaks all resolved. Add air conditioning and a genset and you've got a fine live-aboard vessel (with limitations of course). Taking her to Isla Mujueres, MX from Key West very soon. Enjoy your future C-400...
MSW611

My wife and I have been cruising in hull 112 for the last 2 years (San Diego - Australia - Indonesia - now Malaysia) The boat is really good for what we are doing but we have rudder bearing issues. The manual does not seem to match the actual. We have no lower bearing at all and it looks like there never was one. I have emailed Catalina but got nowhere and would welcome any advice you can give us. Apart from that the boat is a dream - the best I have ever had ..........
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Old 29-12-2012, 07:34   #9
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Re: Catalina 400

It was a long time go Tedberry but as I recall we had just hauled the boat for spring commissioning after it had spent its second year of life winterized afloat in a protected marina. In the travel lift, we noticed the lower circular retaining plate dangling on top of the rudder like a ringer in a game of horseshoes. The 5 or 6 set crews were gone. The rudder wobbled inside the lower marelon bearing. Upon inspecting the upper bearing inside the lazzerette and below the rudder quadrant, we discovered that the 3 set screws drilled through the upper bearing housing to the rudder post had not been drilled through. what was holding the rudder on was a thin smear of 5200. We contacted Catalina and Gerry Douglas about it and they walked away from any responsibility. We dropped the rudder and installed the upper and lower marelon bearings correctly at our expense on a 2 year old boat. 4 years later, upon installing some LED cockpit lighting, we had the aft cabin(s) ceilings removed to run wiring and we took the opportunity to inspect every square inch of the steering system. Serendipitously we discovered that the starboard steering cables had chafed to 2 strands left. upon further examination, the cable had be installed incorrectly. I heard from a few other owners of similar problems. The steering systems must have been installed on a Monday in Key Largo after a major party weekend in south Florida. Anyway, my C-400 has been a champ offshore and comfortably cruising the shallow waters of the Bahamas for 3 months. Im looking forward to circumnavigate the "Spanish Lake" in a couple of years. Best wishes for safe and fun sailing with your C-400 for many years to come
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Old 01-01-2013, 22:37   #10
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Re: Catalina 400

Thanks msw611. I am still not quite sure what to do. We plan to haul the boat when we get to Puket in Thailand (early Feb) but I know there is nothing where the lower bearing should be and I think that is the main issue. I would like to fit a lower bearing but need some sort of expert advice. Maybe somebody can tell me where to get it. The rudder has been knocking since we left San Diego, not a big deal really. I tightened the middle and upper bearings (upper with a shim) but cracks have appeared on the "tube" that houses the lower bearing and seal. So, I don't feel confident to go on to Europe till its fixed. Apart from that the boat is a good cruising boat and my wife and I are having a lot of fun. Good luck with your circumnavigation of the "Spanish Lake" - I guess you are referring to Sth America. (being an immigrant to the US, I sometimes don't understand these things).
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:19   #11
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Re: Catalina 400

Impressive that you have sailed the C-400 from San Diego! I agree you should get the rudder fixed. I couldn't tell you, however, where to get parts. Someone in another thread recommended to use Delrin bearings(sleeves). They supposedly hold up better than Marelon.
The Spanish Lake is the the name given to the 16th century Caribbean Sea dominated by the Spaniards until privateers like Sir Francis Drake broke their dominance by attacking their fleets and outposts. With prevailing currents and hurricane season, one would consider to sail the Caribbean clockwise. Good luck with the repairs and adventures in Thailand!
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Old 02-01-2013, 10:29   #12
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Re: Catalina 400

Thanks msw611, I will check out Deirin and Marelon. Thanks also for the explanation of the "Spanish Lake". The Spanish and the Portuguese certainly got around. There are many forts and canons and other relics from them in Indonesia and Malaysia from the 1400s and 1500s .......
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