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Old 23-07-2007, 08:52   #1
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39' Prout Catamaran

Anyone has experience with 39' Prout Catamaran? I am considering buying a 1996 model with twin 30HP Volvo Diesel engines. First, is it for blue water (stability)? Second, it was advertised with only 8 knots as maximum speed with engines, is it too slow? Third, what sort of performance (sail speed) can I get? Your experience is appreciated.
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Old 25-07-2007, 14:37   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Kay
Anyone has experience with 39' Prout Catamaran? I am considering buying a 1996 model with twin 30HP Volvo Diesel engines. First, is it for blue water (stability)? Second, it was advertised with only 8 knots as maximum speed with engines, is it too slow? Third, what sort of performance (sail speed) can I get? Your experience is appreciated.
I don't have personal experience but all Prouts are good bluewater boats if not very exciting in performance terms. 8 knots is a perfectly adequate cruising speed under power. Personally I never go above 7 although I'm sure I can if I'm willing to pay for all the extra fuel that'll be burnt.
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Old 25-07-2007, 18:17   #3
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I looked at one but what put me off was the Prout rig - huge genoa and a really small mainsail (mast mounted aft the bridgedeck cabin). I think their rationale is that you can easily roller reef the genoa whilst the main needs no reefing until it gets very breezy. But ... that comes at the expense of a nice main which is important to a cats performance. And the overall rig configuration results in a smaller sail plan.

And make no mistake, Prouts are heavy boats. Nice, but slow.
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Old 02-08-2007, 03:28   #4
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I will not get into a rig debate, suffice to say there are pros and cons for both rig types. As well as easier reefing, I would say:

- You DONT need a 'really nice main' for good performance if you have a 'really nice' gennoa
- The big main on the french cats have a large roach, which moves the centre of effort higher (bad for stability) and the full battens make a lot of weight aloft (bad for stability)
- It is often best to put the main sail away on long downwind legs anyway
- The Prout rig has the centre of effort low down
- The Prout rig has the weight of the mast positioned over the point of least pitching movement, hence less inertia
- The main sail has the airflow interupted by the mast (except on wing mast designs) and so foresails can be more efficient
- Wind from behind on a large foresail tends to pull the bows up and forward, whereas a large mainsail can tend to push the bows down

It is not a black and white issue in either case.

To answer the original poster: 8 knots is more that you would normally expect under motor in any 38-39 ft cruising sail cat
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