I have posted this in the thread earlier but could not find it so I'll try posting
it again! I looks like a lot of what i have in said has been discussed and a lot of sensible info has been posted.
However there are a few issues relating to sailing performance , BD clearance and loading capacity that I like to throw in my experience from the FP yachts I have owned, the Athena 38 and my current Belize 43
The FP range is built not with all the storage
capcity that some other heavy cats do have, this is solely to avoid overfilling the boat. However a light built boat have good load carrying capability - unless they are a race
type yachts with fine enties and narrow hulls.
The FP range are in the lighter class of cruising cats making them a reasonably good load carrying vessel. The Belize
can carry 3,4 tons from emty, which is very good for the size. Bear in mind though that the less weight you add to the dty weight the safer and faster it is. I haeavily laden boat will be sluggish and therefore be subject to increased loads
The BD clearance is important regardless of what some try to argue it's not! I have sailed in severe conditions with my Athena 38 when a Norsman 43 gave up and went back to shelter! The issue with BD clearance cannot be disconnected from the load carrying capability and performance. A reasonable light cat has a comprimised BD lenght giving a lenght of forward hulls, with enough bouancy to prevent most slamming.
From my racing
experience a fast boat doesn't slam regardless! This is not entierly true but with good speed the waves will not meet until they've reached the back of the boat, I have seen this and it is amacing how civilised a fast cat behaves even in very rough seas!
Again as I've said in the first part posted below i believe the FP yachts have the fundamentals that Andreas is looking for. However I think the only lines to bring to the cockpit is the main and headsail sheets! The workspace around the mast
on most cats and certainly the FPs is level and big enough for safe handling of all sails
including reefing. And you will also have access to the electric anchor winch
, which is also used as a halyard winch
. I sailed my Athena singelhanded even with aspinnaker and this is no problem as long as you have the electronic deckhand
of a good autopilot
As always these threads are coloured by the boats bought by the participants and that's fine because it give's you many ideas from what other people perceive as being the best options. HOWEVER, don't put the galley down unless you've got a paid cook!
Also the price
range of 400 kEuros will buy you a near new very well equipped Belize
Meastro with money
to spare !
Happy lead free sailin!
Cat experience from Scandinavia
I'm something as rare as a Noggie and just startet posting
my views on this Forum.
I think you're correct in the reasoning behind boat selection! I have owned numerous mono's and enjoyed racing
and also cruising them over the years! However after crewing
by coincidence on a 36' cat when living in Austrailia I was converted. It was I belive something religeous about it! I saw the fantastic cruising opportunities after we had some horific weather during a race
and we kept on sailing, together with the other cat and all the mono' had retired to the clubhouse, wet and miserable with a lot of damage to the boats and gear
We shifted from Aussie to Sweden
and the next boat had to be a cat. I purchased an Athena 38 in the Med and sailed it back to Sweden
in two weeks. Everyone in the southern Spain
area I spoke to said it could not possibly be done but we did it in two weeks exacly. And we were only two on board! We had everything from dead calm crossing the Bay of Biscay, with huge westerly swell to gale force northerly on the Atlantic coast of Spain
to full storm in the British Channel and into the German bight!
This boat handled all fantastic and we did only had damage to the gooseneck by my crew had two accidental gybes in succession!
I was so happy with the Athena that I now have just bought a Belize 43
from Fountaine Pajot
. As for your requirements this fills it purfectly and I would recommend this as a yacht that would suit your budget just nice.
When it comes to choosing the ultimate yacht for a circumnavigation
you would probably need to construct a "thing" that doesn't exist. All yachts have pros and cons regardless of what the various owners opinions.
One issue you have raised is the heating
issue in northern waters. This is something I have a fair bit of experience with and to be honest a multi is not as easy to maintain nice and warm throughout as a mono. This is simply because a mono is, in reality one large space on a single
level, while the cat consists of three differnt spaces at different level.
I have just installed a 5,5kW diesel
heater that currently only supply the bridgedeck area and keeps this nice and warm. A better option is probably to install one heater in each hull that supply both hulls separately and the bridgedeck from both. This, is however more expensive and uses more electric
power than the one bigger unit.
of the boat is related to the hatches and portholes. These are normally of through deck/hull aluminium, which is a very good heat conductor hence you will get a lot of condensation
on these during wither when running the heating
inside. I will try and custom make some for of insulating frames inside that can be removed for when the temperature increases above +5 Deg C.
When it comes to selecting the best cat I have a few of issues that I believe is the most important ones.
- Bridgedeck clearance - must be at least 6% of the boats waterline length. This avoid under bridgedeck slamming which would cause the boat to end up in trouble in really bad weather. I was sailing my Athena 38 in 40-45 knots of wing while a Norsman 43 gave up and crawled back in shelter, for this particular reason.
- Weight - should be as low as practicable possible taking in the minimum requirements you have. By this I mean that a light boat will be faster and not experience slamming as much as a heavier boat. Also it will be faster, which will mean less stress on the rigging, appearant wind goes down.
- The gally must be on the bridgedeck! - this is something I have found out from longer passages. Being in the hull preparing food means that the cook, if he's also on watch cannot see what's going on outside, he'll be cut off from the other crew in the saloon or cockpit, but last but not least, in heavy seas you don't want to be down below more than necessary if not sleeping.
- Sail handling - should be easy, you are on a cruise not a race - big difference. With the wide flat level sidedecks on a cat there's no need to have all halyards and reeflines to the cockpit. Leave them on the mast. This means only three functions in the cockpit; headsail and maisail sheets and the traveller sheet. The longer the traveller the better! This means that the sheet is keept reasonably tight with good mainsail control and ease of the only trimming of the main that is normally required, adjusting the traveller!
- Production boat - from a well known yard, remember one day, which you will not think is comming, might just do that, and you have to sell!
Conclusion bias as it may seem, get a second hand Belize 43 from a private ovener. Not as much wear and tear and generally well equipped.
My , probably more than two bobs, for now. Interesting debate this. I will follow the discussion.
PS, I'm chartering my boat and if you are interested in a sail we can work something out.
Happy lead free sailin