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Old 27-03-2012, 20:07   #1
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Cruising Trimaran Fans?

I am about to receive a new Corsair 37 trimaran as my new play toy and would love to hear from other trimaran owners on how life is on their tris.
The reason for my choice is simple, fast, shallow draft and just enough space. For me this boat is to get me back to basics and my goal is to find the balance of what I really need in and on a boat. Just enough and never too much. I will be adding high output solar and wind gen. I love the idea of sailing off to far locations and feeling like I have it all with actually very little. This balance is what I feel sailing is all about for me.

What size tri do you feel is ideal? Any long passages? I am also interested in how they handle heavy seas and strong winds? 40-60 knots wind. When do you feel it's time to drop all sails and through out a drogue?

Mike
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Old 28-03-2012, 03:12   #2
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

HI Mike W
I have a 37 Searunner and live on it with my wife a little boy. Its a great lifestyle here in New Zealand except maybe the weather or summers a bit short. For living on a boat maybe one needs a longer summer. I believe the 37 mark is the perfect length because its big enough to be a sea worthy vessel but small enough to keep the cost of maintenance down somewhat. I have hoved too in 55 knots in mine and it went well though luckily didnt get the bigger waves breaking on me and that was off shore on the shelf approaching NZ. I believe with a tri you need both a sea anchor and a drogue. But once you commit with a sea anchor maybe it could be very difficult to change. Often i wonder about large storms and if the tri would make through but really i dont know never had the experience... tri's have got a bad name over the years and maybe there is good enough reason for this ... i dont know... though my 37 searunner looks like it would handle quite a bit. In my mind i say that i have to PRESENT the boat to the elements with the type of set up practiced eg hoving too or trailing a drogue or springing off a sea anchor. Good luck with your dreams hope your reach them.
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Old 28-03-2012, 05:41   #3
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

How do you find the feel of the tri when pointing or running? I often wonder if you get one ama in the water then the other side hit, like a rocking motion from side to side. Is the motion good? Easy to sleep?
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Old 28-03-2012, 12:30   #4
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

I've got a contour 34. The boat rocks my kids to sleep, even in a nasty cross sea where the windward ama is smacking the wave tops and spraying the cockpit with a firehose.
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Old 28-03-2012, 13:24   #5
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

I've been living aboard my 37 searunner for about four years now and loving it... sailed from Vancouver, Canada to La Paz, Mexico with no intention of stopping or returning home. Blog is in my signature.
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Old 28-03-2012, 13:28   #6
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Wing decks spare you from the firehose treatment. To windward tris have more of a soft ride than a cat because the greater range of heel eases the force from gusts. With the ama in the air it feels like a gentle swing on the Nicol , the rounded v amas contribute to gentle transitions, easy to rest with. Down wind cruising tris and cats feel pretty similar, very level.

I agree that both drogues and a parachute are a good idea. Every boat is so different they have to be evaluated individually but I don't think tris are less safe than cats because there is more notice when you are overpowered. We try to stay out of the worst weather but in 40+ knot squalls we just keep sailing after reducing sail. We often reef to slow down and take things easy, with the right sail area things become more routine. Ear plugs to cut the wind noise can help make things less stressfull and fatiguing. When to stop has to take into account everything from searoom to forcast , wave size etc....If you are cruising learning to work with the weather and being flexible with your schedule can help avoid the worst blows.
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Old 28-03-2012, 18:25   #7
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Quote:
Originally Posted by drew23 View Post
I've been living aboard my 37 searunner for about four years now and loving it... sailed from Vancouver, Canada to La Paz, Mexico with no intention of stopping or returning home. Blog is in my signature.
I use to live in False Creek too. Nice place to be moored. I am in South East Asia now.
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Old 28-03-2012, 18:26   #8
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

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Originally Posted by Cavalier MK2 View Post
Wing decks spare you from the firehose treatment. To windward tris have more of a soft ride than a cat because the greater range of heel eases the force from gusts. With the ama in the air it feels like a gentle swing on the Nicol , the rounded v amas contribute to gentle transitions, easy to rest with. Down wind cruising tris and cats feel pretty similar, very level.

I agree that both drogues and a parachute are a good idea. Every boat is so different they have to be evaluated individually but I don't think tris are less safe than cats because there is more notice when you are overpowered. We try to stay out of the worst weather but in 40+ knot squalls we just keep sailing after reducing sail. We often reef to slow down and take things easy, with the right sail area things become more routine. Ear plugs to cut the wind noise can help make things less stressfull and fatiguing. When to stop has to take into account everything from searoom to forcast , wave size etc....If you are cruising learning to work with the weather and being flexible with your schedule can help avoid the worst blows.
Which Parachute and drogue do you use? Also how do you attach best to the Amas? I guess some strong backplates are needed?
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Old 28-03-2012, 19:12   #9
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

I have yet to get a parachute, the current drogue is of the Brown tire school but I plan on upgrading to a series drogue when I make time to stitch one together. We haven't had to use anything for a couple reasons. Most of our sailing is done in coastal and island waters where there is no room for either approach. Getting out of an unexpected gale involves keeping your manuverability and finding a safe anchorage, our boat also lies a hull well giving time to get the sails situated. All our deck cleats are well backed, for the drogue currently the main hull is used but we have a wider transom with walk ways on each side to spread the bridle out. We sail year round so have gotten practice with quickly changing weather. That said getting your forecasts from several different sources is better than relying on one. Here NOAA has a tendency to report the conditions after they have occurred, the television network weather is far more accurate. Setting your boat up to adapt quickly to different winds is the best safety method, if it is hard to reef people put it off. With planning and flexibility most of the time people can stay out of windy weather. Speaking of the wind the apparent wind on a tri is really something, a windscreen can add a whole dimension of comfort. I noticed one of the big Farriers in the San Juans very sensibly added a hard dodger. Ours keeps the cockpit sheltered, when the wind is cool keeping your body temperature up is important.
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Old 28-03-2012, 19:42   #10
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

I use a piece of 7/16 dbl. braid 200' w/ a figure 8 knot every 4', at end I use a 4# mushroom anchor. Had to use it twice now, seems to add a lot of drag to slow down & able to maintain steerage. Series drouge probaly works better, at least the CG won't think your un-safe. Michael
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Old 28-03-2012, 20:06   #11
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Was that with the Haida Michael? A monohull is a whole different beast downwind than a cat or tri. Those extra hulls really take away the drama. You really only need to do something if you start boneyarding the backs of waves on a multihull. Nothing unsafe about the tried and true searunner approach. Of course those coasties did pay for the series drogue testing. They also found durability issues with parachutes which make me think they are better for stopping to get rest. Having options is always good, so far we havn't needed them, boats are all different about how to handle them, practicing before it gets bad always makes sense. This time last year we were getting 40 knot squalls on the nose from having to stick to time lines, Mother nature has a way of not caring about man made schedules!
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Old 28-03-2012, 20:18   #12
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cavalier MK2 View Post
Was that with the Haida Michael? A monohull is a whole different beast downwind than a cat or tri. Those extra hulls really take away the drama. You really only need to do something if you start boneyarding the backs of waves on a multihull. Nothing unsafe about the tried and true searunner approach. Of course those coasties did pay for the series drogue testing. They also found durability issues with parachutes which make me think they are better for stopping to get rest. Having options is always good, so far we havn't needed them, boats are all different about how to handle them, practicing before it gets bad always makes sense. This time last year we were getting 40 knot squalls on the nose from having to stick to time lines, Mother nature has a way of not caring about man made schedules!
Got my plans today, getting excited. Michael
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Old 28-03-2012, 20:21   #13
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cavalier MK2 View Post
Was that with the Haida Michael? A monohull is a whole different beast downwind than a cat or tri. Those extra hulls really take away the drama. You really only need to do something if you start boneyarding the backs of waves on a multihull. Nothing unsafe about the tried and true searunner approach. Of course those coasties did pay for the series drogue testing. They also found durability issues with parachutes which make me think they are better for stopping to get rest. Having options is always good, so far we havn't needed them, boats are all different about how to handle them, practicing before it gets bad always makes sense. This time last year we were getting 40 knot squalls on the nose from having to stick to time lines, Mother nature has a way of not caring about man made schedules!
Yes, I guess I'll have a lot to learn again. It's the thing that keeps me going. Alway's learning, life never ends sailing..Michael..
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Old 28-03-2012, 20:43   #14
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Looking forward to hearing about the H-26, you'd better start a thread on boatdesign.net when you've checked them out so everyone can hear. I'm interested for sure, I really like that boat.
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Old 28-03-2012, 21:05   #15
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Re: Cruising Trimaran Fans?

Ive sailed Tris In real bad weather a couple of times, once in excess of 80mph off the west coast of wash and Org and Cali Down hill all the way with a 250 ft of 2 inch nylon behind the tri on the aft cleat on each ama, and small bucket in the middle, and an old oil bag I found aboard, a storm sail bout the size of a hanky LOL slowed the boat down and still had steerage, very comfortable ! tris are good in bad weather you just have to think a little differently, I don't know about cats but I think that the same type of things would work with them also but dont really know about that !
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