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Old 19-11-2018, 11:20   #1
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forward cockpits and picture windows

Condomarans really look anything but seaworthy to me. Instead of small sturdy portlights, they have huge picture windows. Some even have a forward cockpit with a walkthrough door.... "wave through?" What happens to these in survival conditions? Imagine riding one of these in the '79 Fastnet storm.... picture windows stove in, forward cockpit swamped, door torn of it's hinges, water sluicing into the saloon and down into the hulls. To my mind at least these are weekenders intended to putter around the Caribbean in nice weather, and spend most of their lives in a slip. They seem to have crossed oceans, but weather services are far better than they once were....
There is no question that catamarans are inherently safer, sailed properly... One only has to look at storm events like the Queen's Birthday Storm in the Tasman Sea to see this, but picture windows and forward cockpits are just tempting fate IMHO.


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Old 19-11-2018, 17:35   #2
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

If you don't like them don't buy them.
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Old 19-11-2018, 18:11   #3
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

One has to wonder what prompts such posts. Is it the need to start another condomaran vs performance cats debate and clusterfluck? Or is the OP just bored?
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Old 19-11-2018, 19:39   #4
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

Perhaps you should look up the specs of 10mm toughened glass and strong aluminium marine grade frames before coming to any conclusions as to seaworthiness of front windows.

Naval architects do know the weight or seawater and the impact forces involved in wave strikes & the material specifications for windows. Whether the builder follows those specs is another matter....

To put your mind at ease, it is not that hard to rig storm boards as we have done, across large window areas.
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Old 19-11-2018, 20:37   #5
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

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Condomarans really look anything but seaworthy to me...
H.W.
OP has an original thought and rather than search youtube for hundreds of videos of "condo" catamarans successfully sailing the world's oceans, he sits in his favorite armchair and shares his wisdom on what makes a safe bluewater boat.

Do you really think your armchair sailing ideas should take precedent over well documented facts that are easily searchable? Actually... you're gonna fit in well on these boards.
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Old 19-11-2018, 21:25   #6
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

The OP makes a good point. The huge picture windows, forward cockpit that will hold tons of water and the front door werenít an addition to make these cats more seaworthy they were to ad livability which sells boats. Which would be more seaworthy, the catamaran with these features or the one without? Sure there are tons of these catamarans making circumnavigationís mainly on the trade winds route and some are documented on YouTube but does that make them the ultimate seaworthy cat?
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Old 19-11-2018, 21:57   #7
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

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The OP makes a good point. The huge picture windows, forward cockpit that will hold tons of water and the front door werenít an addition to make these cats more seaworthy they were to ad livability which sells boats. Which would be more seaworthy, the catamaran with these features or the one without? Sure there are tons of these catamarans making circumnavigationís mainly on the trade winds route and some are documented on YouTube but does that make them the ultimate seaworthy cat?
No (s)he doesn't. You cleverly changed OP's original "anything but seaworthy" comment to "they are not the ultimate seaworthy cat" but the original comment is pretty ridiculous hyperbole.

Look at the boats that foundered and sunk in Irma. Did you see lots of blown out picture windows? No, you saw boats sunk the old fashioned way... run aground or punch holes letting water in.

Do you watch Out Chasing Stars or Gone With the Wynns or Happy Together or any of the other hundreds of cat focused bluewater youtube channels? Do you get a sense that they are living on the edge of danger due to boat design? Most Leopards with their armchair sailor fearing forward cockpit SAIL to their destinations from arguably the roughest water in the world around South Africa. They are FINE.

As for your "ultimate seaworthy cat" comment. That's a whole other bag. There are cats built to handle Cape Horn or the Norwegian Sea, but "condos" do absolutely fine in 99% of conditions most sailors spend time in. Sure, I'd rather be on a Saba 50 than an Antares in the Caribbean or Med, but I'd feel totally safe on a Saba in the Gulf of Thailand, the Pacific and even South African waters. These are true bluewater vessels. Full stop.
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Old 20-11-2018, 06:17   #8
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

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No (s)he doesn't. You cleverly changed OP's original "anything but seaworthy" comment to "they are not the ultimate seaworthy cat" but the original comment is pretty ridiculous hyperbole.



Look at the boats that foundered and sunk in Irma. Did you see lots of blown out picture windows? No, you saw boats sunk the old fashioned way... run aground or punch holes letting water in.



Do you watch Out Chasing Stars or Gone With the Wynns or Happy Together or any of the other hundreds of cat focused bluewater youtube channels? Do you get a sense that they are living on the edge of danger due to boat design? Most Leopards with their armchair sailor fearing forward cockpit SAIL to their destinations from arguably the roughest water in the world around South Africa. They are FINE.



As for your "ultimate seaworthy cat" comment. That's a whole other bag. There are cats built to handle Cape Horn or the Norwegian Sea, but "condos" do absolutely fine in 99% of conditions most sailors spend time in. Sure, I'd rather be on a Saba 50 than an Antares in the Caribbean or Med, but I'd feel totally safe on a Saba in the Gulf of Thailand, the Pacific and even South African waters. These are true bluewater vessels. Full stop.


The cats that sank in hurricane Irma have nothing to do with their blue water abilities, they were mostly rafted up in a hurricane hole not sailing blue water.
Yes I watch some of the YouTube channels and have yet to see any of them sailing through a life threatening storm. If they encounter that storm do you think they would be happy that their foredeck was or had the capability of holding 7000 lbs?
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Old 20-11-2018, 10:09   #9
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

Catalac 12M survived the 79 Forsnet storm
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Old 20-11-2018, 10:22   #10
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

My personal experience with a big cat was limited to chartering a Leopard 44 out of Grenada. The so-called front cockpit seemed very seaworthy since the entire front cockpit deck was mostly a grill open to the sea.
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Old 20-11-2018, 10:23   #11
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

The Titanic looked seaworthy when it set sail.

Good article here if the interest is just debating seaworthiness:
https://www.soundingsonline.com/boat...red-in-reality
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Old 20-11-2018, 10:37   #12
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows




What do you think allowed the bridge deck cabin on rainmaker to be completely ripped off?... The ocean blew out the windows and got inside.... that's pretty obvious to anybody with any engineering background. Once the sea gets inside, it can exert pressures it couldn't otherwise.
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Old 20-11-2018, 10:43   #13
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

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My personal experience with a big cat was limited to chartering a Leopard 44 out of Grenada. The so-called front cockpit seemed very seaworthy since the entire front cockpit deck was mostly a grill open to the sea.


Completely filled the Leopard 44 forward cockpit holds over 6300 lbs of water and takes 45 seconds to drain. If the seas are big enough to fill the forward cockpit with water that may be the longest 45 seconds of your life. Once filled the chances of getting more water increase dramatically as you now have the equivalent of a Ford F450 truck parked on your foredeck.
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Old 20-11-2018, 11:00   #14
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

Catamarans are not inherently safer. They have greater initial stability. The best catamaran wants to be upside down once it gets past 90 degrees of heel. Of course to get them there requires an immense amount of force. The best monohulls can be nearly upside down and still want to be upright.

I'm not taking sides. I love them all. There are many boats out there of both varieties with many pros and cons. Just wanted to make a correction to the comment about being safer. It's too general of a statement.
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Old 20-11-2018, 11:05   #15
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Re: forward cockpits and picture windows

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Originally Posted by owly View Post



What do you think allowed the bridge deck cabin on rainmaker to be completely ripped off?... The ocean blew out the windows and got inside.... that's pretty obvious to anybody with any engineering background. Once the sea gets inside, it can exert pressures it couldn't otherwise.
I'd welcome the report that states, "The ocean blew out the windows and got inside.... that's pretty obvious to anybody with any engineering background."

The report I read specified that the "...mast snapped 400 miles off the coast of North Carolina during one of the worst recorded winters in the North Atlantic on 30th January 2015," and spent "...14 months in the North Atlantic. Two winters of gales." “They cut away the rig – separated it in five minutes – quite an act of seamanship. And the boat was not damaged,” said Johnstone.

Read more at https://www.yachtingworld.com/news/f...gIw1q57FxFb.99

We know the crew abandoned ship, and I have no doubts they didn't worry about closing anything up before they were airlifted off. We have no idea about their windows, if they were smashed or when and how.

At 1:43 you can just barely see the hardtop is still in place when they're airlifted.

Just saying....
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