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Old 21-05-2016, 23:53   #1
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Ideas for small NZ blue water cat

I'm a noob when it comes to open ocean sailing. I plan on taking a Nautilus catamaran certification class later this year and want to get a small cat that would work for a family of five for short trips. I'm living in Nelson and wanting to take trips across the tasman and golden bays for fun that will allow family to acclimate to the cruising lifestyle, allow me to learn all the funs of boat ownership and sailing a larger cat in open waters, and gain the experience I want before buying a new large cat to start circumnavigating in October 2021 (when I will have my NZ citizenship).

So what I want to do is find a cat for under $150,000 that would be comfortable for living onboard for around 10 days at a time, has systems similar enough to a larger 50' cat to gain familarity with, and is able to make longer trips (w/out the whole family) like up the eastern side of NZ to bay of Islands and northland. What makes and models are recommended where if maintained properly I'd be able to roughly sell for what I put into it but at the same time after 5 years I'd have a great sense of what I want in a 50' cat that will be our home for many years? I do have extensive RV boondocking experience, long backcountry expedition experiences, airline pilot, commercial construction, and built/opened several breweries. I have read many stories/blogs about the rough oceans around NZ and will be playing it very cautiously. BTW, I'm 6'4 and kids (currently 10,12,14) are looking to be larger than I am.

Features I want would be:
  • solid hulls with no lamination issues
  • adequate electricity through solar/generator
  • reliable diesel motors
  • either watermaker or large freshwater tanks
  • good refrigeration/freezer so we aren't camping out
  • sailset that will allow me to capable and learn with

Is this possible? Thoughts on what boats (and what size boats) I should be looking at?

Thanks!
Mic
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Old 22-05-2016, 00:33   #2
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Re: Ideas for small NZ blue water cat

2nd hand Seawind 1000
We have chartered them in the whitsundays and 2nd hand would be in budget.
Capable to do the tasman
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Old 25-05-2016, 21:50   #3
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Re: Ideas for small NZ blue water cat

Hi Mic
I know your area well, went to school in Nelson and grew up in the Sounds. I have just finished my boat here in Sydney. Here is my, admittedly totally biased view of what is a good cat.
My take is a cat has to be a good sailing boat--I grew up sailing Tornado cats and they ruined me for anything that wasn't a great sailing boat. Therefore you need daggar boards and a boat that is not too heavy. Basically that rules out pretty much all the production boats except for a few like Catana and Outremer (which are bloody good boats).
My boat is a Pescott 11.7 cat that I had professionally built in Noosa by Ross Blair--it is an amazing boat. It has the headroom you need, two queen berths and a double--I've cruised for a week with 4 adults and 4 teenagers and we had a blast--the boat absorbed everyone really well and we're still doing 15-17 knot offshore (till the teenagers told us to slow down as they were getting thrown around..)
My boat is built out of western red cedar and foam which is a great combination, extremely strong and light. There are a lot of Schionning cats around made of balsa and so far I've not heard any problems with them, however all foam is my preference.
I guess the question to ask yourself is what type of sailing do you want? If you want lots of space with all the toys, airconditioning, 3 heads and lots of wood interior and, you're not fussed about sailing performance, there are lots of choices. If you want a boat that sails well while still giving you room minus the aircon, multiple heads, and not quite so many toys, you need to watch weight and need dagger boards.

Also, my boat has 20hp honda outboards and I love them. More than enough power and so easy to use, power tilt them up and no worry about shafts, anodes, folding props etc etc and you get three sets for the price of one set of diesels.
Re rig, I go simple, slab reefed main with roller furler headsail, works well and is reliable
Re power, solar panels are around a $1 per watt these days--I have two 200watt panels and it provides all our power for autopilot, fridge, music, lights and instruments and it's simple
Re the Seawind 1000, they are 'brick outhouses', they just suck at sailing...(apologies to all Seawind owners...) I spend a week on one in the Whitsundays...also the beds are small...

Phil
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Old 26-05-2016, 01:34   #4
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Re: Ideas for small NZ blue water cat

Gees Phil your boat sounds awesome.
I must have misread the question from Mic.
I misinterpreted words like, Family learning experience and allow family to acclimate to the cruising lifestyle for fly a hull and beat you round the buoys. But if your boats up for sale at 150k NZ it would be worth a look.

Sirius
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Old 26-05-2016, 02:21   #5
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Re: Ideas for small NZ blue water cat

A pescott whitehaven is most definitely a family cruising boat
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Old 26-05-2016, 02:50   #6
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Re: Ideas for small NZ blue water cat

Yes that are fantastic family boats, I can single hand mine easily but are also perfect sailing with my two teenage daughters
There were a few for sale in Australia a few months ago but none at the moment--and they do tend to be more that NZ$150k
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