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Old 07-02-2009, 08:05   #1
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Formosa Liveaboard

my wife are looking at becoming liveaboards but she is not sure about how big we need to have. we have been looking at a 41 ft formosa but i have no experience with them. the owner has spent a tremendous amount of money revamping this boat but i thought id see if anyone in the forum had any thoughts or concerns with this boat. thanks all
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Old 07-02-2009, 08:27   #2
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Hi Michael! Zeehag here on the forum has a Formosa yankee clipper 41. PM her when ya get a chance...
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:00   #3
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The google search option in the search button works better than the standard search function.

Here is one thread, there are others.


http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...ugly-1084.html

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Old 07-02-2009, 10:06   #4
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My impressions are that the FOrmosa is not the best built of the taiwan boats for sure. However, as some people say "what they lacked in boat building knowledge, they made up for with lot's of glass" I suppose it depends on the particular boat and how early in their learning curve it was. Also some models had plywood cabins which are very suceptible to rot and a huge job to fix. Pay particular attention to the cabin, cockpit and deck for rot and water saturation.
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:17   #5
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My impressions are that the FOrmosa is not the best built of the taiwan boats for sure. However, as some people say "what they lacked in boat building knowledge, they made up for with lot's of glass" I suppose it depends on the particular boat and how early in their learning curve it was. Also some models had plywood cabins which are very suceptible to rot and a huge job to fix. Pay particular attention to the cabin, cockpit and deck for rot and water saturation.

formosas have a lot of problems--but if caught early enough are simple enough to repair--if anything has been allowed to sit for any length of time , the gods of taiwanese boats start griping and stuff gets worse fast....the filler wood used was philipine mahogany, which is as bad as soft pine--hates all waters....some with wood decks will find there are places the water gets in really well---cpe's help a lot---no one should own a taiwanese boat without a gallon or two of this awesome product--is good for masts, decking---inject it into the bad spots after cleaning them and is good fix--donot wait until the problem is huge and replacement is needed--gets costly...chainplates, tanks, steel stuff is made with inferior quality steel----these crack--the engine is spozed tobe a perkins 4-108. many have fortunately had repowers--some have not.....the 4-108 is adequate, but the yanmar is soooo much nicer(duh)......there are so many good things about these boats and so many not so good things--but the design is good and the comfort factor is unbeatable...lots of room and stability --is a very heavy boat----28000 pounds---for the yankee clipper......they sail like a wetsnail, but is ok if you are into slow and comfy.....as a live aboard --hard to beat----just takes a little more work they are cruise-able.......
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:27   #6
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sounds like the formosa is plagued with issues if left unadressed. the boat we are looking at sounds like all these issues have been dealt with at considerable cost to the owner. this is a link to the boat
Sommossa
from what i can tell looks like a pretty decent boat but hey what do i know
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:34   #7
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sounds like the formosa is plagued with issues if left unadressed. the boat we are looking at sounds like all these issues have been dealt with at considerable cost to the owner. this is a link to the boat
Sommossa
from what i can tell looks like a pretty decent boat but hey what do i know

sammosa looks very good--i would buy her if it were in my path.....she looks well cared for and ready to cruise, actually----if there are any problems, i can help with knowledge--i have to rebuild mine -----still in process....but i would not trade her for anything but a sea tiger---formosa.or equivalent in hardin or CT or force.......all built in same yards by same working families........all with same issues, as well....allof them used same steel and same philipine mahogany.....just depends on how original owner took care of boat----same as any other boat.......if one really loves these boats, scare tactics donot work--i know---they were used on me--is how i know so much, besides havin gone of my own after the boatwright tried to warn me off.......
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:50   #8
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If you are up here in the NW, Hire Matt Harris at Reisner, McEwen and Harris surveyors. He's great on Taiwanese boats... knows all the details...
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Old 07-02-2009, 11:02   #9
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If you are up here in the NW, Hire Matt Harris at Reisner, McEwen and Harris surveyors. He's great on Taiwanese boats... knows all the details...
unless ya are a surveyor do not buy an unsurveyed boat-----there are many issues that are not obvious------but donot rule out an entire type/make of boat because of issues----they are addressable and it sounds as if most if not all of the problems have been addressed by thhe sellers of the pilot house ketch you found--i am envious--pilot house garden ketch for 69k is a good price and she looks nice--survey , buy, run like hell.......get spares for everything.......
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Old 07-02-2009, 12:52   #10
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They do not sail like a Westsail, a Westsail will actually sail. Not so certain these CT41/Hardin/Formosa boats will. I overtook one of these boats and put her hull down astern in a couple of hours on our Westsail 32. The conditions were ideal for both boats, reaching in 20 knot trades. I tried to deliver an early one from LA to SF, took us 5 days to get the 100 or so miles to Santa Barbara. The engine failed because of water ingestion into the fuel tank from the tank vent. Had to sail there. At one point, surfed backwards trying to sail to weather in light air. A racing fleet out of Ventura area sailed past us on their way to a Channel Island turning mark and then sailed back past us on their way home. We were sitting there slatting and banging, going nowhere while these other boats were sailing at good speed. The Hardin/CT/Formosa boats have had other serious issues besides there inherently poor sailing qualities.

Suggest you go to Any Info about 1980 Ta Chiao CT 41? to get some other opinions.

Will admit I've got a strong prejudice against these boats but it comes from experience.

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Old 07-02-2009, 13:12   #11
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having sailed both wetsnail and formlessa, i do believe they sail very similarly. the formless is able to track well and be nicely slow----garden designed these to sail a lot like gaff rigging---gawd knows why----most folks do not know how to do that kind of sailing. is a nice sight also watching the ct walk over the wetsnail on this bay-----i donot care how badly she sails===this one i am on managed just fine to get from frisco to dago with an average of 7 kts----is all good---we each have our own way of sailing ----and therefor our choices in sailing vessels....kinda like opinions---yes they sail crappy---yes so do wetsnails----who is racing in these anyway??...

ps--there is a slight difference betweeen 1980 ct and 1976......just slight.....
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Old 07-07-2009, 12:23   #12
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I just posted over here, but I've been living aboard a Formosa 41 (1977) for the past six months with my fiance, and we've had plenty of space and good sailing to boot. We replaced the deck core this winter, and it sounds like most Formosas either have a new core or will need one in short order. All in all, we've been pretty happy with our purchase so far and look forward to doing some extended cruising next year. If you want to see some photos of the boat, including the deck project, I've been blogging about the liveaboard life (thus far) over here: Sea Trials: Our Life Afloat. Good luck with your search, and let me know if you have any more specific questions!
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Old 07-07-2009, 13:19   #13
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Gentleman motor sail to weather...... if your planning goes awry enough to be going into the wind anyway.... :>)
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Old 09-07-2009, 08:28   #14
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I just posted over here, but I've been living aboard a Formosa 41 (1977) for the past six months with my fiance, and we've had plenty of space and good sailing to boot. We replaced the deck core this winter, and it sounds like most Formosas either have a new core or will need one in short order. All in all, we've been pretty happy with our purchase so far and look forward to doing some extended cruising next year. If you want to see some photos of the boat, including the deck project, I've been blogging about the liveaboard life (thus far) over here: Sea Trials: Our Life Afloat. Good luck with your search, and let me know if you have any more specific questions!

formosas, cts, hardins and force all were made in taiwan--using filipine mahogany as a core/filler material----is a rot wood, as is our soft pine--acts same---but other than that the boats are timeless in design and function---heavy displacement cruisers designed by wm garden.....roomy, laid out nicely and comfy in most all kinds of weather---i havent tried hurrycames yet--i hope i donot--but the boats are are great---they tolerate bumpy water without the sailor realizing that water is bumpy-and they look awesome--i love the lines---works for me..lol....there is a yahoo site for formosa ct and such leaky teaky owners---on yahoo--formosa owners group--is very helpful for those of us with these boats---to see what others are doing and have to yet do with and to their boats----is a goood support group for us, also.........
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Old 10-07-2009, 01:12   #15
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Quote:
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They do not sail like a Westsail, a Westsail will actually sail. Not so certain these CT41/Hardin/Formosa boats will. I overtook one of these boats and put her hull down astern in a couple of hours on our Westsail 32. The conditions were ideal for both boats, reaching in 20 knot trades. I tried to deliver an early one from LA to SF, took us 5 days to get the 100 or so miles to Santa Barbara. The engine failed because of water ingestion into the fuel tank from the tank vent. Had to sail there. At one point, surfed backwards trying to sail to weather in light air. A racing fleet out of Ventura area sailed past us on their way to a Channel Island turning mark and then sailed back past us on their way home. We were sitting there slatting and banging, going nowhere while these other boats were sailing at good speed. The Hardin/CT/Formosa boats have had other serious issues besides there inherently poor sailing qualities.

Suggest you go to Any Info about 1980 Ta Chiao CT 41? to get some other opinions.

Will admit I've got a strong prejudice against these boats but it comes from experience.

Aloha
Peter O.
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I own one, and it really doesn't sail that badly. She sails well in strong winds, although a bit tender at first and for a boat with that kind of displacement she wants her reefs taken in quite early. She could have used more ballast... She is surprisingly fast in light air too, considering her displacement. During a recent test run outside the marina, we did 3 knots at best, reaching in force 2 winds. What surprised us the most is that she will go to wind a lot better than expected. Reading posts on the internet I got the impression that trying to beat to windward was more or less a hopeless project, it really isn't! We had to beat 50M out of our last 140 and did so in force 5-6 winds with genoa and mizzen and still made an avarage of 4.5 knots VMG, between 5-7 knots through the water. It's nowhere near a modern boat, sure, but she's far from dead in the water, no matter if winds are light or strong, and the ride is always smooth and comfy. We have only sailed 170M on her so our experience is still very limited and right now I have the main mast down for repairs, but after our 2 month cruise this summer/fall we'll know a lot more. Maybe we actually will find her to be a dead duck under certain conditions, but this far we're nothing but satisfied

We all have different boats to compare to and everything is realtive, so naturally that has an impact on how we experience new boats. Someone who is used to modern racing boats will think that 2.5 knots in force 2 winds and beating with a VMG of 4.5 knots is "dead in the water", others will not. For the record, I have never been close to a Westsail, much less sailed one.

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