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Old 02-04-2010, 04:01   #1
JEZ
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I am considering buying a 32 year old catamran that still looks in good condition. Could anyone tell me what are the things I need to look out for on such a boat. I have some experience with motor boats but very little to almost no experience on sailing boats. Would appreciate your thoughts and insights into this.
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Old 02-04-2010, 04:57   #2
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Mine, I think, is also 32 yr old. A GRP Prout and in pretty much original condition.
Everyone will say get a Survey. Do. I can send you a copy of mine if you PM your details. It covers Osmosis, Sea worthyness. General Condition and Faults. It is a static test so it didn't cover the fact the the drive leg was suspect, the headsail furling was not set up right, the headsail sheets didn't track properly as installed, and other bits like that.
There are some very useful old cats around and some real dogs. Go carefully. Good ones cost the same number of quids as the day they left the yard. Good ones will need upgrading in various respects, cables to rudders will be worn, engine and gearbox will be old, standing rigging is suspect, sails will need replacing, sooner or later. Radio's will also be old. But she's a treasure, a hobby and a good sail. Not the fastest in light winds by a long way, but so safe and roomy compared to thin boats. Manouvreing under power is difficult, if yoou're lucky you get a twin prop one that will turn on a sixpence. Tell me more!
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Old 02-04-2010, 05:07   #3
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Thank you for replying Eleven. I will definately get a survey done. yes she is twin prop and the make of the boat is Catalac 9m. Her owner has been working on her and although some work needs to be done to her she still looks quite nice. But there are a lot of things i do not understand about sailing and would need to learn
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Old 02-04-2010, 06:57   #4
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The Catlac's are pretty damn good for the Med.. the more open plan is great for the warmer Climate. I've had friends who owned them and nearly bought one myself in the 90's... but settled for a Westerly Longbow instead...
I had sent my then partner off for an RYA Comp Crew course and she came back filled with tales of the instability of Cats and how they tip over... and stay that way.
No amount of reassuance that it only happened when one performed a combination of stupid mistake would change her mind.. so
Only one way to start my cruising... I compromised....lol
Anway.. survey recomended... lots of things you can see easily but you need the beams at least checked by a pro..
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Old 02-04-2010, 07:27   #5
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Besides the survey make sure you get the engines surveyed (separate) and make the purchase contingent on a sea trial. I wouldn't buy a car without a test drive, would you? Stay with the surveyor as he is doing the survey and ask questions. Take the position that if something can't be demonstrated to work then it is bad. If the surveyor tells you something can be fixed for $10.00, don't believe him, check it out.
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Old 02-04-2010, 09:09   #6
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It's a good boat, I've seen a few but didn't suit me.
Don't settle on one, there'll be more for sale, all in different condition.
The sailing part is easy if the weather behaves, and cats are so solid you'd have to be daft to damage it. But you do need to study the charts well, have a depth gauge, ad the usual emergency stuff.
I strongly recommend taking an instructor out with you with one of his usual crew and watch what they do and ask a lot of questions. If they'll do a weekend all the better, there's just too much to pack into a day.
They won't get everything right if they are mono men but you'll learn your own method. Three or four learning trips, together with some sailing in good weather to get experience and you'll soon be competent. After that there's a life time of learning.
Internally you really want a gas stove with oven and grill if you plan on staying aboard for more than the odd night. Decide if the toilets have a black water tank and if you will need one for your waters. Check carefully for leaks from windows, they a pain to repair.
I had no previous experience and learnt in busy waters (Solent). We made mistakes but none serious. It's a matter of being sea wise, which you are, and I read alot. And understanding just how hard the wind is. You'll learn, you probably already have an idea from berthing your motorboats in a breeze. Sails are just ten times the area. Enjoy.
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A few places left in Quayside Marina and Kemps Marina.
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