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Old 25-08-2012, 05:32   #1
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INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

I am looking at 2 of these cats and would like more info on them;
Anybody who can tell me sailcapacity,seaworthy,deckheight to waterline, anything possitive as well as negative, thanks
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Old 27-08-2012, 14:12   #2
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

Laforge, the Solaris 42 was heavy cat with solid construction, but a reputation for rather pedestrian peformance. The bridgedeck clearance was extremely low and the ketch rig was something which made her pointing ability even worse than most cats of that era. That being said, many owners have enjoyed them and they have a comodious interior and joiner work that was done to a very high standard for cats in the early to mid seventies. As I recall, Prince Rainier of Monaco ordered one as a wedding gift for Princess Grace.

Really, it depends upon your priorties. If you value spacious accomodation at a relatively low price, one could make a pretty good liveaboard/motor-sailor, so long as you recognize her limitations!

Brad
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Old 28-08-2012, 02:41   #3
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

Thanks S.Star
Yes the main question is; do I want to do a way with prettty sailing abilities in exchange for livingspace, that's why the cat research, as it would take a long time to test all models within my reach maybe you have an idea of what were the better sailing cats of that era,
for instance I am also looking at a Catalac 900, which as far as I understand
is another solid cat with low sailing capacities, there is a Punch out there, too expensive for it's accomodation but that looks a sailing cat,
I keep searching, thanks
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Old 28-08-2012, 14:42   #4
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

If you can locate a Catalac 8M or 9M built with the updated rudders and skegs or a 900, you will actually sail pretty well
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Old 29-08-2012, 06:33   #5
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

Laforge, the Solaris 42, while extremely roomy, was undoubtedly the worst sailing Solaris and would not compete with the Catalacs due to the relative lack of bridgedeck clearance, the weight and the ketch rig.

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Old 29-08-2012, 07:35   #6
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

When reading posts about the catalac 9 or 900 I come across some negative sailing capabilities as well !! but you seem to be experienced with both and would choose for the Catalac above the Solaris, there is one of each on offer at the same price range, the catalac being more recent, but somewhat smaller, neither equiped for offshore sailing!, another intresting cat available; a Derek Kelsall Suncat 30, similar equiped, although single engine, any experience to compare with the other two?
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Old 29-08-2012, 08:39   #7
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

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Originally Posted by laforge24 View Post
When reading posts about the catalac 9 or 900 I come across some negative sailing capabilities as well !! ...
Early Catalacs had a horrible time when hard on the wind. There was a design change around 1980. Skegs and skeg hung rudders were added. Windward performance improved.
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Old 29-08-2012, 10:44   #8
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

I have no personal experience with the Suncat 30 although, as I recall, a number were built by Solaris Yachts so based upon their other boats, the construction should be quite solid. While a much smaller boat, it is also one which is much more modern in design and which should perform quite well for a 30 foot cat. My only conerns would be the following:

1. If it has running backstays, they can be a bit of a pain for short-handed sailing.
2. Hydrualic drive. I had a Bayfield 32 with hydrualic drive and, while it has many positive attributes, they do tend to need their pumps replaced after a number of hours as they tend to develop leaks. If they are in need of replacement, I am told that pumps (or hudrualic motors) are available for lawn tractors at a reasonable cost that will handle the load of the diesel at reduced cost. That being said, I would not expect it to be cheap.

If the hydraulic drive is leak free (as it should be), they are really quite an efficient set-up, however. They typically allow 'feathering' of the power to the props while keeping a constant number of RPM's on the diesel and, they can be immediately switched from forward to reverse, silently and without mechancial wear (a valve merely reverses the flow of the hydrualic fluid).

Brad
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Old 29-08-2012, 10:54   #9
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

P.S. Tropic Cat is the resident expert on Catalacs and I would take his word as to the significance of the changes that were made on later boats and the reasons for avoiding the earlier models. Obviously the earlier Catalacs would also have bad performance to windward - although at least the higher bridgedeck clearance should reduce the pounding that the Solaris 42 was notorious for!

Check out and test sail all three boats (and others in your price range) to get a feel for the compromise that works best for you. Remember, all boats are compromises and in your price range, that is especially true. I am not saying that you can't find a boat that will work for your needs, but that only you can decide where you fall on the performance/accomodation scale in your price range.

Brad
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Old 29-08-2012, 12:24   #10
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

for someone who has no-experience with this Solaris design you knew more then I had read, yes it has running backstays, how did you guess that, and true that would not be enormously handy, can't that be changed? Ni it can't, as for that hydraulic system i had already put out another thread, apparently it is overhauled so should be working, the seller is not replying to my mail, maybe on holiday? the catalac does look nearly my only other option, but 7 Nm sounds slow, I know what you're going to say,,,
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Old 29-08-2012, 13:25   #11
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

So what is the real world BDC and fineness for the various Catalac models?
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Old 29-08-2012, 14:22   #12
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

Laforge, it has a fractional rig and these often make use of running backstays. Getting rid of running backstays would require a completely different rig and a great deal of cost.

Understand that due to the relatively short waterline length of the Suncat 30, I'd be surprised if she could exceed 7 knots and, in all likelihood, she may even do less if equipped for cruising. However, she seems to have much better bridgedeck clearance, a much more modern underbody shape and I anticipate she would point much higher and be more comfortable to windward.

I have not personally sailed a Solaris 42, but have heard from a couple of owners of them (with ketch rigs) that they not only do not point well, but they can require the use of an engine in order to tack in light air. In addition, as already mentioned, they will pound a great deal going to windward in any kind of chop. Personally, I could not live with a boat with those attributes.

Please understand that I cannot say that this is a generic condition for the 42 as: 1. I have not personally sailed a Solaris 42. 2. I have no idea of the condition/shape of the sails on the boats where this criticism was made, let alone 3. the competence of the sailors. This is where a sea trial is critical.

When I speak about your own priorties and the need to assess where you are on the performance/accomodation scale, let me tell you aboiut my boat. Prior to purchasing my Solaris Sunstream 40 I had read reports of the problems associated with the Solaris 42 and was initially worried that she would exhibit the same traits. Fortunately, she is a completely different design and tacks readily; fortunately she not only has more bridgedeck clearance (albiet still not as much as I would like) and an excellent shape to the bridgedeck - a very gradual slope down from the leading edge of the bridgedeck and back up a bit at the trailing edge, all without shelves or intrusions into the tunnel (in fact, the curve is so gradual that the forward end of the bridgedeck saloon floor is on a slope)! Due to this shape and the comparatively narrow tunnel width (some modern cats are as much as 50 % wider in this area) she pounds much less than a number of other cats that I have sailed (and even some with significantly more bridgedeck clearance).

Again, she is a completely different boat than the 42. Rather than a ketch rig, she has a cutter rig with a furling genoa and a furling staysail/storm jib with dedicated winches and tracks for proper sheeting angles in all conditions. As already mentioned, she has mcuh higher bridgedeck clearance and a better underwater and under bridgedeck profile than the 42 (which has a central protrusion that is virtually in contact with the water). She has narrower hulls, a higher prismatic coefficent, a lower displacement and a relatively fine entry with with twin knuckles above the waterline to increase bouyancy in extremis but also improve performance. In spite of all of these advantages, for me the boat is still on the low end of what I would consider to be acceptable performance - even for a boat intended to be used primarily for sailing with the trade winds. As the wind picks up, she will reach at just about 1/2 wind speed (7 knots in 15, 9 knots in 20) and she will tack through 100 degrees. Considering the solidness of her construction, her offshore rig and cockpit and a terrific offshore layout below, I can live with this less than stellar peformance. Personally, hoever, I could not live with what I understand to be the performance of the Solaris 42. Really, IMO she should be considered a motorsailor that will pound going to windward. If that is acceptable to you in exchange for the interior accomodation/comfort, then she may be the right boat for you.

The issue, of course, is directly related to your intended use and your budget. And please beware - no matter what boat you decide to purchase, you must allow a realistic amount for the inevitable refit (I say inevitable because of the age of boats that you are considering). I am just finishing a complete refit on my boat and, equipped for offshore sailing and extended liveabaord, she will end up costing me close to $150 K ($97,500.00 for the boat and another $50K or so for the refit).
I gather that you are budgeting about $50K for the boat and then, perhaps another $25K for upgrades and a refit? Simply put, you will have to expect even greater compromises than I was prepared to make.

You should also understand that the British cats of that era (and even my Sunstream 40 which was built in 1994) made extensive use of glued on vinyl headliners and carpeted surfaces. I can virtually guarantee that these are going to need replacement, if they have not already been replaced. In my boat, I am virtually finished removing all carpeting and glued on vinyl and replacing them with textured FRP panels. This required an incredible amount of effort: the glue had to be mechanically removed, templates had to be made for about 150 separate pieces, wooden screw strips had be cut and epoxied on in many locations (where there are compound curves), then the panels cut and attached with either screws (where they need to removed in order to access deck hardward or wiring), or adhesive. The panels were then trimmed with custom teak moldings. Yes, you could have an automotive or marine upholster tear out the old vinyl and replace it, but it will not be a permanent fix (nor as attractive). If I did not possess the skills to do that work my self, it would not have been cost-effective to hire someone to do it. Understand as well that my refit costs, as high as they may seem, do not include much for electronics - my boat came equipped with an underdeck hydraulic autopilot, modern wind/depth/speed/log intruments and a below deck repeater, a 160 gallon a day watermaker, a modern inverter charger and a 1050 amp hour house battery bank, solar panels (which I have upgraded), a wind generator, a SSB radio with electronic tuner, recent radar, recent chartplotters, good ground tackle wtih dual windlasses, only 2700 and 3200 hours on the Yanmar 3 Gm30's, etc., etc. etc. My costs, exclusive of my own labour, are for: replacing the headsail, storm jib, mainsail with new offshore dacron sails (nothing high-tech); new running rigging including new main fiddle and swivel blocks, new lead blocks for the jib and genoa and all new halyards, sheets, furling lines and reefing lines; new portlights throughout; new deck hatches throughout; new batteries; new lifelines; head rebuild kits, new flex-tanks for water and waste; new hoses for the heads; repair of one spongy area in the aft deck; some new faucets and a new exterior shower; diesel injectors serviced and additoinal fuel filters installed, new VHF radio with DSC; new stereo/speakers; new control unit for one keel-cooled refrigeration unit; new pressure water pump; recovered cushions throughout; new gaskets/seals for saildrives; new stainless steel chainplates for a series drogue; new solid dodger/bimini; 240 watts of additional solar panels and controller/regulator for the same; new lazy jacks/stack pack for the main, etc., etc.

Trust me, the costs will add up quickly, even on a relatively well maintained and equipped boat.

Am I telling you that you should up your budget? Absolutely not. I am just suggesting that you have to be realistic about your intended use for the boat, your own level of skill at repairs/upgrades, what needs (or will soon need) to be upgraded - AS WELL AS - what performance and accomodation you can live with.

Good luck in finding the boat that works for you!

Brad
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Old 29-08-2012, 15:25   #13
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sand crab View Post
So what is the real world BDC and fineness for the various Catalac models?
what's BDC? sandcrab
about fineness of catalacs I can't talk, just looking at what is affordable on our side, really liked that Cross-tri you found, but again US flagged,
maybe ought to live over there!
http://yachts.apolloduck.com/image.p...257951&image=1
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Old 29-08-2012, 16:52   #14
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

Quote:
Originally Posted by laforge24 View Post
what's BDC? sandcrab
about fineness of catalacs I can't talk, just looking at what is affordable on our side, really liked that Cross-tri you found, but again US flagged,
maybe ought to live over there!
UK: For Sale: Kelsall Suncat 30, Boats for sale, used boats, new boat sales, free photo ads - Apollo Duck
BDC = Bridge Deck Clearance. I was asking Tropicat. These threads do drift.
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Old 29-08-2012, 19:36   #15
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Re: INFO Solaris 42 Ketch

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Originally Posted by Sand crab View Post
BDC = Bridge Deck Clearance. I was asking Tropicat. These threads do drift.
Slamming has never been an issue, so I haven't made it a point to add it to boat specifications. After reading this discussion, I think this was a mistake on my part. One that I'll work to rectify.

As to the 8M, I can only make an educated guess. 3 1/2 feet forward and about 1 foot aft.... plus or minus a couple of inches. Here, have a look at my Catalac 8M.

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