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Old 20-08-2014, 18:47   #1
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Balance 451

Has anyone seen this cat? I see that it is going to be on display at Annapolis. I've actually been waiting to see this one. I'd love a review if anyone has seen it in person...
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Old 20-08-2014, 20:10   #2
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Re: Balance 451

Bit of history, the Balance 421 was simply the (Australian) Montebello 12.5 by another name, nothing wrong with that, the Montebello was a nice boat. I sailed the original 12.5 for a day down the coast, nice boat.

The 451 is as Mr Berman says - an evolution.
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Old 20-08-2014, 21:09   #3
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Re: Balance 451

So, Factor. .. Do you think it is the same quality as the Montebello? The reason I'm interested is that I Love the cockpit design .. so I'm interested in seeing what it looks like in person. ..
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Old 20-08-2014, 22:42   #4
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Re: Balance 451

Quality wise I couldn't say till I see it at the Annapolis show, but no reason to think it won't be done well. Cockpit was the least favourite part of the Monetbello for me.
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Old 09-05-2015, 08:43   #5
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Re: Balance 451

Did you go to the boat show and look at the 451? I'd be curious to hear your reaction I quite like the look of the boat and the fact that it is one of the more affordable models on the market in that size with dagger boards so presumably it will point better into the wind then some other fixed keel models. However, I don't particularly care for the aft "office" with the single bunk looks like wasted space to me that would end up getting used for storage. Also, I Wonder about the resale value of lesser-known, not well-established brands like this. Lack of response from Phil to your inquiries also seems potentially problematic.
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Old 09-05-2015, 09:49   #6
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Re: Balance 451

Look here:
Balance Catamarans

I think this one was also covered in another thread titled Annapolis Boat Show or something like that.
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Old 09-05-2015, 09:52   #7
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Re: Balance 451

I saw the one in Miami. I too had been looking forward to seeing this boat with a promise of good speed and cruising comfort at a reasonable price. I spent about two hours going over everything. Couple of takeaways that resulted in this boat coming off my list.
1. It feels very tender. On the dock as people moved around the boat it reacted to every movement. Felt more like a J 22 than a 45 foot cat
2. The saloon is very cramped. I get they want to have weight more centralized but the impact is on the living space in the saloon.
3. Hulls felt very narrow down below with the daggerboards
4. I think this was hull number three, and it was not fully finished, but poking into some of the spaces the work looked pretty rough.

I know with time they will improve the build, for me the living space and the tender feeling put me off. I would need to be convinced this yacht could put up with the rigors of crossing major oceans.
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Old 09-05-2015, 10:58   #8
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Re: Balance 451

Thanks for the the report back OwenRMS. Very helpful perspective. One of their selling points was seaworthiness so the signs of flimsiness are cause for concern. Also hard to tell frompictures about cramped saloon. Still, its a heat looking boat.
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Old 09-05-2015, 16:23   #9
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Re: Balance 451

The " tender" feeling probably comes from being a light boat. Important to keep it light to maintain performance and doesn't mean it isn't well built. Also the cramped feeling in the hulls would also be a compromise given to a performance oriented boat. We saw the Balance at the Miami show. I liked it, and it was one of the only cats there that was designed to anchor in the tropics as it had a lot of opening hatches and great ventilation.
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Old 09-05-2015, 18:16   #10
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Re: Balance 451

I like the look of it. 13.6 meters X 7.1 meters and 8391kg light. It should sail quickly, and I like the cockpit layout and some of the features, such as the half dagger boards, and the hatch up front for attaching your bridle. The cabin does look a little cozy, bit it appears to have more room that say an Outremer 45. I'd like to see one.
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