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Old 27-12-2008, 20:42   #1
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I am looking for all information that i can find regarding reviews, or experiences with different designers/builders.

I am looking for any websites that may contain said information. Of course I'm trying to find impartial opinions, if that's possible. I've seen all the advertisements, what i would like, is to hear people's experiences.

I am looking to build a performance cruising cat. Emphasis on performance.

Size range 48-55. with a good bridgedeck clearance dependant on the L-B ratio.

Am not concerned what country she's built in, just the team building her.

My wife & myself to call home when on vacation & for me to play with in some phc racing if we get the chance. The missus likes going fast as well.

Again, I need to keep the better half happy when it comes to some of the creature comforts.

The only absolute consideration. I want to use diesel,electric/hybrid for propulsion.
ie the most advanced charging/management technology & energy efficient on board systems.

Any help with this endevour would be greatly appreciated....

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Old 27-12-2008, 20:55   #2
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Hi RustyJeff (or Jeff I am guessing), we have a similar design concept my criteria are a fast cruising Cat that is a dive platform. I would love to share my notes and collaborate where possible.

I am looking at 40-50ft+ and from what I see you either pay a fair amount (1M+) or you are looking at 5-7,000 hours of work. I am opting for the later but the base design is a heavily modified (Spirited 480 or a waterline 1480 (the Gforce 1400, looks great but the payload is only 1500Kg and I need 2,000+)) you may hit the same snag if you are looking to go electric as the batteries weigh a ton. I am looking for a Cat that is built around the same concept as my tech diving kit )all life support systems are independent singles that can be linked ie 2 inverters, 2 solar cell banks, etc..) and as far as propulsion it's electric and I am looking at skipping the genset (may have to revert on this later).

Anyways love to chat more and good luck

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Old 27-12-2008, 21:39   #3
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Yeah Peter,
These are all considerations. I am not in a hurry cause i want to get her right. I know that's a hard task to start with but i have the time & i'm not going to build her myself.
What i am doing is researching all the technologies that i can & inputting this to the design phase.
When I decide on a design team I would like to be fully involved in every aspect. I'm an engineer (electrical) by trade so I intend to be hopefully not such a pain in the but.

The technology is in existence now to give a very efficient yacht, in its usage of power. This of course will get even better in the next 5 years, but its like waiting for the next best version of computer to come out.
We have to build sometime.. & i'm wanting to make a point of making this cat as much a module system as possible.

I would like to try to take advantage of systems coming out by making her modular.
I can't predict the future but I have an idea where its going.

What this thread, I hope will be, Is a space for all who are looking to build/refitt, or discuss those aspects that arise when you cant find the boat you want or the one you have just isn't cutting it anymore.

Opinions about yards in the US & around the world are welcome as we never know where we will be in the event of cruising/breakdown/refit.

All aboard...
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Old 27-12-2008, 22:12   #4
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I fall in the snail category(or boring) as I have a planned launch date of 6-8 years from now (down payments on condo in Bonaire are 90% there and then it's just the relocation once my son is old enough o move out or go to University)

That aside, what speed and weight ratio are you looking at I did a load and weight calculations and my load requirements are 1500 light to 2400 heavy based on 4 people + all equipment and all redundant systems (this included pretty much everything but rigging and shell). I am looking for the ability to cruise at 14-16 and get up to 20+ if the conditions are right sadly I am being told over and over again that I wont be building it myself but at the most assisting and should probably just find a shipyard to begin with but the issue then is budget

In terms of power have you done any calculations on the draw and weight yet? The reason I ask is I was going to get you to validate my estimates I am assuming I need at least 2hrs of motor cruising ability and I would like to have NO diesel or gas on board so I need 200-400AH capacity for propulsion and that sadly is heavy

I am very impressed with the specs for the engines, but really want direct drift engines as I believe that the elimination of the belt should in the long run give higher reliability
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Old 27-12-2008, 22:41   #5
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I am very much in the spec gathering phase, myself.
I know I, or my wife demands certain things, which is fine. Just have to make her longer.... Thats the important thing to me, Have what we need, then make her long & wide enough to support that. That does mean the missus will not get all she wants but hey, I'm having it built for me to sail, & her to stay on.

As for weight calcs, I'm letting the designers do that. I'm just trying to get a good size to fit our requirments.

Ahhh. the requirements....
Like a small condo. Owner style with workshop. ac, fridge, freezer, washer/dryer. & the most important to me is internet conection. Be it from sat or rely on coastal cell phone networks. I will require satelite eventually but as long as the base is in thats ok.
remember, there is no snail category, It only comes down to when we are ready for her..
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Old 28-12-2008, 00:48   #6
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I may not be impartial, but then I believe that is for good reason. My boat was designed by Bob Oram. I'm building her myself, there's some pics in my gallery.

I've found Bob to be incredibly helpful, and over the couple of years we've become good friends. But that applies to pretty much everyone who has built one of his boats - they become firm friends. Largely because of his honesty and his ethical approach.

I've seen him travel interstate to personally rectify mistakes made by professional builders - he recently relocated a bowthruster on a powerboat that had been incorrectly (and contrary to the plans) installed too close to the waterline to work properly - even though that was not his responsibilty IMHO. But he felt that since he had recommended the builder he owed it to the owner to fix the builder's mistake.

He's travelled as far as Darwin and Western Australia at his own expense, to help builders get started.

He designs boats that are relatively simple and fast (so comparitively inexpensive) to build, and his boats work extremely well.

He has a range of stock plans including a 50 and a couple of 60 foot cats, and all his designs are very open to customisation.

Website: Bob Oram Design

There's also a short video here: which demonstrates the eficiency of his powercat designs.

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