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Old 11-03-2009, 23:05   #1
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Catalac 12m: Thoughts?

Hello everyone,

My wife and I are thinking about getting a Catalac 12M 1983. We have not had a chance to inspect it in person but my wife is already wary about the boat being built in 1983. I know there are very few Catalac 12M around the world but hopefully someone that currently own one can help with several of my questions.

1. the listed beam for the 12m is 17'6", how much would this affect trying to find a suitable slip, i.e. what are the usual restrictions at most marine/dock.
I am most interested in Marina Del Rey slips as we will be moving to LA summer of 2010

2. Have any Catalac owners have structural problems especially ones from the 1980s. I am talking about just normal wear and tear.

3. Would you buy your Catalac again given the choices available now?

4. Is it advisable to ship one across the country ie east coast to west coast for a boat that large?

5. How would you convince the Admiral about buying a boat that old?

6. For 2 people is the interior space of the Catalac 41 "too much" given the increase in cost of slip for live aboard?

7. What would be a fair price for a boat that size and age?

8. 2200 hrs on a 40hp Yanmar. good, bad, or decent?
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Old 12-03-2009, 09:38   #2
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There are several dedicated Catalac proponents on this forum, so we try not to overstate any perceived deficiencies. There weren't many 12m's built, but I would guess every one of them is still sailing, providing safe if slow cruising in largish accomodations for small crews. They were heavily built, but an older design which is no longer on the market. More modern designs are better sailors; closer winded, more easily driven, and quieter in confused seas. If you were to apply modern standards to this boat, you should catagorize it as a motor-sailor. Each tack performed without auxiliary power is an accomplishment to be relished!

I've only seen three 12m's and they were all adorned with a massive collection of aftermarket pariphenalia, clearly announcing to the world that speed was NOT an issue. After some consideration, I concluded that removing all that stuff, and throwing out the odd washing machine and waterbeds would not significantly affect performance, so what-the-heck,-lets-get-a-bigger-generator.

I know this will be hard to do, but get a ride on a Catalac, and then on a run-of-the-mill cat before you make an offer.
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Old 12-03-2009, 10:45   #3
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The 12m Catalac is without doubt the best of the models.

Windward performance can be OK but you need to understand the quirks of these boats and how they are set up to achieve results. A lot are liveaboard by priority and thus the owners have added what they consider is the more important items. Off the wind, they can be very impressive performers. In my 9m I expected to sail faster on a beam reach or downhill than a 37ft Prout Snowgoose.
The first year a 10m Catalac entered the ARC, it won its class.

A 1980 or later boat is actualy one of the newer ones. They are built very robustly and unless there is something specifically broken on the boat you are looking at, should give you decades of great sailing. A number of UK owners of the smaller catalacs would undoubtedly have upgraded to a 12m if any had been left in UK! I know of 2, one of which has a couple liveaboard. I would be certain that the Catalac will be in better condition in 20 years, than a brand new FP purchased now.

The width of the 12m is much narrower than the average of the newer catamarans. Most large monohull lifts can cope up to 20ft.

Cant comment on shipping by road in the States, but this would be very expensive in UK due to the need for police escort because of the width. But your roads are wider

Personally I reckon you would be better off shipping her on one of these purpose designed ships. They like Cats because they sit much better on their deck.

Undoubtedly, a newer cat will sail better to windward and have better accomodation. If you look at the price of the 12m and see how well this has held up by comparison to other brands, you know that there has to be a reason, and that is the confidence these boats inspire in bad weather. This also means that their resale value is good.
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Old 12-03-2009, 12:17   #4
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If you haven't seen it, here's some more info on the 12m:
Catalac 41 12M Catamaran by Catalac

The beam (17'6") and height of the boat with the mast down (11'10") are outside the practical limits of interstate trucking (it could be done for a VERY big chunk of change though.) A delivery would be cheaper.

That width of beam is a problem. It would be a lot easier to find a slip for a 14' to 16' beam. That includes Geminis and PDQ 32's with a whole bunch of Prouts, Endeavor cats and smaller catalacs in between.

The new online multihull magazine I touted sleswhere has a story on delivering an older catalac, and I recommend it only as a cautionary tale.

A 20,000#+ 41 footer is a very big boat for a new pair of owners. The avereage one-couple cruiser is 37' and a single hull. But a newcomer living in a 2000 square foot house has a very hard time picturing life in 300 square feet. It does work tho.
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Old 12-03-2009, 19:56   #5
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Thank you very much for the input.

41 is very big for a first timer definitely but I read so many good things about the Catalac and an opportunity at a 12m seems like it only comes once in awhile. I am definitely taking things slowly and most likely won't get it as my wife only wants something within the 3-4 year range. The 14-15 beam for slips also limits the selection to Geminis and maybe the PDQ32. This really limits the options to Geminis and monohulls but we are certain we want a catamaran. Definitely more sailing days ahead for me as well as a possible trip to Key West with a nice Captain we met in Fort Meyer. That hopefully would cement our resolve on a sailing boat.

Liveaboard is also a consideration if we are able to find a good location.
We do not have kids and they are not in the equation until at least 3-4 more years so we want to enjoy what we can now together.
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Old 13-03-2009, 08:22   #6
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The Tomcat 9.7 is also in that range, 32 ft loa, 16 ft beam
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Old 13-03-2009, 09:39   #7
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I have looked at the Tomcat 9.7 already.
There is not much information on the Tomcat as compared to the Gemini. I found 1 good post at another forum detailing how someone chose a Gemini over the Tomcat. There is also virtually no listing for used Tomcat as compared to the Geminis. Tomcats also cost more base price than a Gemini. The 16 beam makes it slightly harder to find a slip compare to the 14 on the Gemini.

If there are any Tomcat 9.7 owners here and would like to share their experiences, it would be most appreciated.
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Old 09-11-2009, 19:42   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aiyo View Post
Hello everyone,

My wife and I are thinking about getting a Catalac 12M 1983. We have not had a chance to inspect it in person but my wife is already wary about the boat being built in 1983. I know there are very few Catalac 12M around the world but hopefully someone that currently own one can help with several of my questions.

1. the listed beam for the 12m is 17'6", how much would this affect trying to find a suitable slip, i.e. what are the usual restrictions at most marine/dock.
I am most interested in Marina Del Rey slips as we will be moving to LA summer of 2010

2. Have any Catalac owners have structural problems especially ones from the 1980s. I am talking about just normal wear and tear.

3. Would you buy your Catalac again given the choices available now?

4. Is it advisable to ship one across the country ie east coast to west coast for a boat that large?

5. How would you convince the Admiral about buying a boat that old?

6. For 2 people is the interior space of the Catalac 41 "too much" given the increase in cost of slip for live aboard?

7. What would be a fair price for a boat that size and age?

8. 2200 hrs on a 40hp Yanmar. good, bad, or decent?
DID YOU BUY YET AS I HAVE OWN MY 12M SINCE 1991 AND HAVE ALL GOOD NEWS ABOUT HER LET ME KNOW IF I CAN HELP OUAT41@HOTMAIL.COM
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Old 09-11-2009, 19:52   #9
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12M CATALAC

ONE OF THE SAFE AND BEST BUILT CAT ON THE MARKET I HAVE SAIL MANY OF CAT'S AND I TALK THIS ONE ANY TIME ONCE YOU UNDERSTAND HOW TO HANDLE HER IT SAIL'S GREAT. CAN BE HULL AT MANY YARDS WITH 17'6'' BEAM AND FIT INTO ANY SLIP THAT THE LARGE 45' BER/HAT/ETC. FISHING BOAT FIT INTO SO NO PROBLEM WITH MARINA SLIPS
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Old 09-11-2009, 22:09   #10
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Catalac, an affordable cruising catamaran

Details of all catalacs here including 12m
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Old 24-01-2010, 10:51   #11
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catalac 12M with 1M Heavy duty Swim platform

We are now in Isla Mujeres and on are way to Florida 2nd owner for 20Years looking to sell have a Business Investment. ouat41@hotmail.com
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File Type: doc 1984 CATALAC 12 METER.doc (264.0 KB, 578 views)
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Old 24-01-2010, 11:08   #12
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Judging from the questions you asked, you seem to have little sailing/maintenance experience. If this is the case, then I would say do not buy a boat that you cannot see in person AND go with a surveyor.

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Old 26-08-2011, 05:07   #13
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Re: Catalac 12m: Thoughts?

Angel Louise is #26 of the 27 Catalac 12 Meter boats built. Ours was finished in 1987, and has over two 37 HP 3-cylinder Yanmar Engines. We have sailed her 24/7 and been live aboard explorers touring over 20 countries from US to VZ and the ABCs on the North shore of the Caribbean. Summer of 2011 we completed a trans-atlantic from Georgia to England where we will spend the winter before moving on to Europe and the Med.

We measured ours and find the width actually was 17' 3" and we have no problem with most slips as the motor-trawlers that are so popular today take up similar amounts of room and most marinas will have slips that can accomodate cruisers.

Only one 12 Meter Catalac was ever lost that I know of and that one was abandoned in a Pacific Typhoon in the far Pacific after the owners lost all steering and reported doing giant waves, frontwards, backwards and sideways. My recollection was that the typhoon had more than a dozen Mayday calls from other vessels and when the occupants of the Catalac were rescued the rescuing vessel reported that she appeared to be doing well, but ended up ramming the Catalac several times until she sank at the owners insistance.

We love our Catalac and have sailed her everywhere since 2007.

Ed and Sue on ANGEL LOUISE, lying Lymington, ENGLAND
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Old 29-08-2011, 03:53   #14
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Re: Catalac 12m: Thoughts?

GREAT TO HEAR FROM YOU ON THE FORUM ALWAYS GOOD TO SEE SOMEONE GETTING GOOD USE AND NOT LETTING HER SET AT A DOCK. I SOLD ONCE UPON A TIME IN 2010 TO TO A GREAT COUPLE WHO ARE NOW CRUISING WITH HER THE CATALAC ARE GREAT BOATS AND WAS VERY HAPPY TO OWN ONE FOR 20 YEARS GOOD LUCK AND THE BEST OF WINDS
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Old 29-08-2011, 05:29   #15
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Re: Catalac 12m: Thoughts?

Wow, very old thread so I guess it's all been resolved. The 12m does have a very good reputation, both for space and build quality, which is why they hold their values so well. If my own Catalac 900 (formerly the old 9m) is anything to go by, the extra 3 meters will make for a very large and comfortable liveaboard.
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