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Old 22-08-2011, 15:00   #436
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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Over 400 Lagoon 440 around the world.
Number of Lagoon 440's upside down = 0.
there's the real stats.
the 440 are underpowered for the size of the boat and therefore have a saftey margin built in to a point.
The numbers and history tell the story here.
True enough Pete, although we're not so sure the "underpowered" would applpy to the square-top mainsail rig on CatNirvana. Our observations (including those of our hugely-experienced delivery crew) suggest her mainsail is anything but underpowered...and in fact we tended to run her single-reefed even before the nominal wind speeds suggested by the factory.

Reef early, always, on any cat. If you're thinking about a reef, do it.
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Old 22-08-2011, 15:47   #437
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Totally agree, reef early and its a better ride too, much more comfortable and no slower.
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Old 22-08-2011, 16:01   #438
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I find the standard sail supplied with our lagoon 440 is easily managed even in strong winds. We just had a new main cut with a fuller head (not square top) - felt we could do with a bit more power. We also find the Lagoon 440 gives one plenty of warning in the event of wanting to lift a hull (not sure she wouldn't dismast first?) but we never felt we couldn't get to release the main on the downstairs jam cleat - a really fantastic safety mechanism on the lagoon 440.
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Old 22-08-2011, 16:18   #439
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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reef early and its a better ride too, much more comfortable and no slower.
Hear him!
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Old 23-08-2011, 04:02   #440
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Exactly impi,
We got hit with 55 knots out of Newcastle when the forcast was for 35 abating to 25knots.
The 440 handled it with time to get the 3rd reef in.
Fortunatly we have never really needed to release the main from downstairs but its there if we ever need it.
Our new main is cut fuller adding 10 m2 to the original and works great.
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Old 23-08-2011, 04:23   #441
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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Our new main is cut fuller adding 10 m2 to the original and works great.
Looking forward to seeing that Pete! I well recall hearing and then seeing the demise of your old main!
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Old 23-08-2011, 04:34   #442
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Thats right, you broke my perfectly good old main!
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Old 23-08-2011, 12:42   #443
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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As several folks in this forum I am where you where a couple years ago, working my way through a checklist to determine which cat to purchase. If you could start over which cats would make your final list?
I have been offline for the summer, but will do my best to answer now.

Which cat I would purchase now is dependent on a few factors. First of all I would not buy any cat with an owners hull, because I think having 4 cabins gives you more options (like: chartering or having paid crew with you, or family and friends, assuming they're still talking to you). Secondly I would buy a cat that has a strong brand name, so that I know it would sell easily when that time came. A home made boat or an unknown brand is a tough sell, especially in a downward pointing market. People say that Lagoons or Fountaine Pajots are dogs and sail like anvils. I disagree (just check out the sailing times from the ARC ... When I sailed across the Atlantic on my FastCat 435 I was thoroughly trounced by a Fountaine Pajot 38) ... and I know that had I sailed a Lagoon or an FP across the Pacific, I would not have lost nearly as much on the sale. With that said, I wouldn't be caught dead sailing a cat with a fly bridge.

The discussion about forward facing cockpits is interesting. I was onboard what was the newest Chris White Atlantic '57 in 2009 in Mustique and a well kept Atlantic 42' when I went through the Panama Canal. I found them to be nice looking boats, that according to their owners sailed very well. I did however feel very exposed (to the wind, waves and sun) in the cockpit and would not have wanted to be there in a few of the spots I went through. In particular when the wind and waves kicked up when going through Cook Islands on my way to Palmerston. The angle of the waves would have been rough on anyone doing any sort sail adjustments in a forward facing cockpit and would have drenched the cabin anytime you opened the door. The squalls coming through would have made it even less desirable.

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I cannot believe that people can be sailing in a situation where the only way of releasing a sheet in a squall or storm is to open a front door on an ocean going yacht. Not being able to release a sheet is crazy on a monohull, (where the worst outcome is just a knockdown), but on a cat it is certifiably insane when the end result is inversion.
I completely agree.

A point that has already been raised which I think is incredibly important is the lack of protection from the sun on beautiful days (which is also a gripe I have with the Catanas). It's tough to rig something semi permanent covering the forward facing cockpit, when you have a boom that needs to swing overhead. In port it's no problem, but it's underway that you'll have an issue.

As a separate note, I think that the Atlantic '42 feels like a much smaller boat than it is, because of the small salon, the lack of an aft deck and a small forward facing cockpit. My cat was a foot longer, but felt huge by comparison. A Lagoon 42 would feel palatial by comparison.

My personal conclusion, in addition to what others have stated, was that both in rough weather and in nice and sunny weather the forward facing cockpit is not very usable.

Incidentally I saw the capsized "Anna" when we came to Tonga and it was not an encouraging sight.

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Old 23-08-2011, 16:41   #444
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

Some interetsing observations there from SettingSail2009, although also proof positive (in our humble view) that everyone's perspective is different, but no more or less valid.

We would not consider anything OTHER THAN an owner's hull version. We bought CatNirvana for us, not for our friends or our potential crew or really for anyone else. We absolutely love having our own, ample space. We observed too, during the course of our 4-year search, that owner version vessels definitely commanded a premium in resale value due to both there being fewer of them and they being typically non-chartered vessels.

We also approached the flybridge decision with great reserve, but we ended up buying one. The turning point for us was sailing one (Pathfinder, whose justly proud owner appears in this thread!) over a reasonable (~650nm) ocean passage, in rough weather as well, where it proved an excellent layout that was both comfortable and practical and with exceptional visibility when it was really needed. We then delivered our own flybridge vessel over ~14000nm (Sardinia to Sydney, via the Panama Canal) with 2 professional delivery crew...and everyone on board absolutely loved the flybridge. The delivery pro's started even more reluctant about the flybridge, but then commented toward the end of the voyage "Why doesn't every cat use this layout...it's brilliant!" Lots of people criticise the flybridge, but to our knowledge those critics do not include ANY of those who've spent a lot of time sailing with one.

As for the forward facing cockpit, as far as the discussion applies to the forward facing (and forward of the mast) cockpit on our CatNirvana, we love that too, although we admit its use is substantially limited to when we are sitting 'on the hook'...and there is another, traditional cockpit also available. That said, if there are any other cruisers in this discussion thread (?!?) they will appreciate that cruising is about spending a lot of beautiful, relaxed time 'on the hook'!
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Old 23-08-2011, 16:48   #445
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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Thats right, you broke my perfectly good old main!
Aw Pete...that's a bit unkind!
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Old 24-08-2011, 00:40   #446
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I was happy it lasted a year more than should have.
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Old 24-08-2011, 00:56   #447
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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I was happy it lasted
We were happy CatNirvana's sails lasted as well. We heard stories about factory sails falling apart quickly so we expected ours would be 'shot ducks' after 14000nm -- After all, some boats never travel that sort of distance in their whole lives! -- but in fact they held up rather well. We spent a bit on repairs after our arrival in Sydney (re-stitching the UV striping, replacing the non-baton luff attachments, a new topping lift line on the square-top baton and various patches over the heavily worn spots) to the mainsail and the genoa is stretched around the 'window' -- For the winds she withstood we're not surprised! -- but for all that her white sails now look in reasonably good shape. Even the sailmaker commented that he couldn't fault either the materials or the workmanship on what were simply the standard factory sails. They're clearly not made for racing, but niether are we!
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Old 24-08-2011, 01:11   #448
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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We would not consider anything OTHER THAN an owner's hull version. We bought CatNirvana for us, not for our friends or our potential crew or really for anyone else. We absolutely love having our own, ample space. We observed too, during the course of our 4-year search, that owner version vessels definitely commanded a premium in resale value due to both there being fewer of them and they being typically non-chartered vessels.
We belong to different schools of cruising. You've saved up and set sail, while I set sail without having enough $$$. So in order to afford it I had paying friends/crew with me across the Atlantic and through the Pacific. Having 4 cabins, as opposed to owners hulls would have been awesome. My trip was definitely a richer experience and a better trip because of the people I had with me.
When I was in the Caribbean I made $4000 a fortnight having 2 couples with me on charters, which is a nice way to top up the cruising kitty. I had 8 such charters, in the course of two seasons and it gave me a nice little income. It would have been much better with 4 cabins. Again, my style of cruising is different from yours.

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We also approached the flybridge decision with great reserve, but we ended up buying one.
You love your flybridge and those who have gone with you share your view: Awesome, but I still wouldn't want one and here are my main reasons against the flybridge:
1. The loss of sail area on the main. The boom sits quite high up on the mast on all the flybridge cats I've looked at. This means that they are missing out on good sail real-estate.
2. It lifts the center of buyancy, by adding weight higher up.
3. It removes whomever is at the wheel from the cockpit. From a social point of view I dislike this and it also raises the bar just a tad when you need to run inside to flip a switch or get something you need, without needing to get someone to bring it to you.
4. You need extra sun protection and can't use the normal bimini.

I'm sure the visibility is good from up there, but from my cat I had perfect view of all 4 corners, so there was no need to elevate my position to see more.

Like you said, different strokes for different folks. You have a boat that's perfect for you and that's all you need. I was looking for a boat that would be perfect for me when I started this thread and only after completing the trip have I found what would fit for me. Trial and error.
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Old 24-08-2011, 01:50   #449
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

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different strokes for different folks
Cheers Andreas!

Once again, we applaud your points well made.

Just on the flybridge issue and for the benfefit of the thread, we approached the issue wiuth exactly your concerns but we concluded seriatim...

1. There was no loss of performance whatsoever. In fact, even our hard-core racing-mad delivery crew conceeded our performanace was very good.
2. Lifting the wieght of several persons is immaterial to the bouyancy given the vessel weight. We were also surprised how much the extra height added to the horizon visibility...there were numerous instances where we spotted vessels from the flybridge well before they were visible from below.
3. Our flybridge seats 6-7 comfortably and is in fact another living area such that, when it's nice up there and people want to relax, it tends to be a gathering point, rather than a point of isolation.
4. When the sun's out, the bimini is there. Admitedly, the bimini only accomodates 2-3 people though.


Anyway, each to our own eh?!? Keep well and happy sailing to you!
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Old 24-08-2011, 02:16   #450
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Re: Characteristics of a Circumnavigating Cat

Like I said, different strokes for different folks, but when you said:
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1. There was no loss of performance whatsoever. In fact, even our hard-core racing-mad delivery crew conceeded our performanace was very good.
Are you saying that cutting away X amount of square meters of sail area won't give us any loss of performance whatsoever? ... This will be interesting knowledge to a lot of sail and sailboat designers.

Don't worry ... I get it, you really like the flybridge, but like I said in my last post, it's not for me.
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