Ive been stalking this forum (and many others for that matter) for quite some time. I've been doing a lot of reading about different boat builders, build materials, types of cats, etc etc. Ive found that when buying
something/anything its in your best interest to ask someone whose bought the product rather than those "selling" the product. Ive seen other threads in this forum that had a wish list similar to mine, however, Im not a thread hijacker so I'm posting
In looking for the right cat for me, I have found a few things prefer:
*40-50ft range. I can comfortably go up to 60, though I wouldnt really want to.
*Cat that can be single-handed, hence not really wanting to go over 50ft.
. I will be a full time live aboard. I will not go exploring, have my fill, then sell the ship. I will be coast sailing with this cat for at least 3 years MINIMUM before I plan on doing any hard core
traveling. I dont want to live in a shiny, glossy, plastic hot mess. I want this catamaran
to feel like home.
is no object. Ive done very well for myself and am willing to pay for quality.
*No "entire head
as a shower" funny
business. Just no...
*I dont have to have a "fast" boat or a "luxurious" boat. I want/need a boat that can cruise
comfortably in open seas and handles well.
These cats have a few of the things Ive been looking but fall short in others. I wont list ALL of the pros and cons, just the ones that stick out the most for me.
Pro: Its a boat that crossing performance and comfort. Granted, you cant have both but GB seems to be pushing that boundary. Im fine living w/o a air conditioner unit or heating
unit. I can find different methods of adapting to different climates. I have for the majority of my life.
Con: I have doubts as to whether the ship will be able to suit long term needs. Im not to concerned about heating
the ship, but I have to have a washing
machine. Its a must! And this model seems to a smaller solar
system than most. The solar
system provides 800 watts as opposed to 1 kw. Might not seem like much of a difference, but once your worried about power consumption
, you'll want those extra watts. Your radios and certain other necessities must stay on at ALL times. Juggling between having my computer on, washing
clothes, and a few other dailies and ensuring your batteries aren't stressed is a must.
Also, the boat is a bit bigger than I would like. Im certain I can single-hand the beast, especially considering the arrangement of the cockpit
and lines, but I would prefer something under the 55ft range. Im not getting any younger and would prefer something I can handle as I age gracefully.
This is a relatively new company, 12 yrs old. It has also changed its design team and retired its previous models, circa 2001-2008. Though some of its earlier ships are still out at sea going strong and in some cases racing
comfortably, I have my doubts about the longevity of the boat 20+ years down the line. Every builder
has to start somewhere, and Im a big rooter for the underdog, but how young is too young?
Another issue is far more disconcerting. A considerable amount of the ship is carbon fiber. From what Ive been reading about cf hulls is that cf is subject to electrolysis
similar to aluminum
hulls. Ive also read that when carbon fiber fails...it FAILS HORRIBLY. No note, no warning, just crack, splat, and capsize
. Do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars. Safety
is a biggy for me so I would like some more info on this if you please.
Pro: Though the cockpit is outside but well protected. Boat layout seems comfortable.
Con: Plastic looking interior
. The boat also seems to carry a considerable amount of weight in the center with a very VERY small AND narrow tramp area in the front. The design of the cat seems to fall in line with a boat building era in which builders literally got away with murder making boats that were improperly balanced causing frequent pitch
holing. Again, safety
is a biggy.
Chris White: Short and simple, Indoor cockpit but horrible interior and awkward layouts.
Mass Production Cats.
Pro: Modern interior. Boat has a tad bit of performance and considerable comfort.
Con: Outdoor helm
. It is well protected, however incase of unfavorable weather
i would like the ability to spend as little time at the helm
The newer Helia and Sanya have had a lot of interior updates that has made the boats chic and modern but ergonomically challenging. Sharp edges, and in the Helia's case, poor layout, have left me a bit...concerned. The helm is a considerable distance from the lines meaning I would have to put the ship on autopilot
and then go and adjust the sails
whenever the occasion calls for it. Though only a foot or two away, it seems like an unnecessary hassle for single
Considered the Lapari and the Salina however,I have heard horror stories about the construction materials fp uses on ALL of their boats. FP seems to have a reputation for the pox. Everyday maint./upkeep of a boat is hard enough without worrying about reoccurring epidemics of poc outbreaks over the bottom of the hull
Pro: Extreeeeeemly comfortable interior.
Con: Some same concerns with construction materials as fp. The boat is also extremely heavy making it awkward to handle at times.
Pro: Unlike any other company Ive found so far, they take customer service
to a level I havnt seen anywhere else so far. Twice a year they hold a seminar for those who've purchased the 44 go through a tutorial phase in which they spend 3 days showing the new boat owners all the systems on the boat and how to care for them. THAT shows due dilligance!
Con: No owners suite. Interior and layout erks me. May sound picky, but like Ive said before, this will be my home for as long as I live and function.
With my list being what it is, I realize my options are limited. Certain things I can learn to live with, others I cannot. I realize that I wont get everything on my wishlist, and am willing to compromise on somethings, but not to the point where Im miserable.
Im leaning more towards GB, yes the carbon fiber freak out. Reason being is that I would like to find more information/owners with similar hulls and pick their brains about their experience with their boats. Since Peter is a specialty builder
I'm certain I can squeeze an extra solar panel in there somewhere...Im posting
this in case there are some other boat builders out there that I havnt found yet. Any suggestions?