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Old 17-03-2012, 14:39   #16
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

Quote:
Originally Posted by smj View Post
This would have been a good point on the cons of multihulls thread that got closed.
The Leopard 40 suffers from this more than the others due to it's place in design evolution. On previous Leopards (Simonis), if you are 5' 10" or better, you can see over the coach roof from anywhere in the cockpit. The 40 was the first Leopard to eliminate the steps down into the saloon, which in turn eliminated the view from from the cockpit, limiting it to the helm. At the same time, hard top biminis came into fashion resulting in the narrow 8" gap view from the helm. Subsequent models including the 46 have raised hardtops over the helm widening the "gap" from 8" to 4 feet or so, at a cost of raising the boom.

My point here is that it's not a common complaint of multihulls in general or even most Leopards in the big picture.

I've heard it said by first timers on a cat that it feels like driving a garbage truck. Not very complimentary, but I can see where it comes from...

Dave L38 #38
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Old 17-03-2012, 16:25   #17
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

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... The 40 was the first Leopard to eliminate the steps down into the saloon, which in turn eliminated the view from from the cockpit, limiting it to the helm....

Dave L38 #38
Thanks for mentioning that trade-off as well as others. I hope I didn't come across too negatively in my post about the visibility. As with many things it is a matter of trade-offs and while I would have liked better visibility, to me the ergonomics of having a same-level salon with a great view were a worth-while trade-off without question.
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Old 20-03-2012, 06:13   #18
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

I've done a small amount on one in the Caribbean and found the bridge deck to be low causing some slapping in beam seas. They are not at all a performance Cat and would have trouble staying up with most production monos on the breeze if at all.

For the money I would go with an older Outreemer for around the same money there are some late model 90's around that are great sailing craft but don't have the same interior volume.

For me
Leopard = Caravan
Outremmer = Touring car
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Old 20-03-2012, 07:07   #19
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

I've done a small amount on one in the Caribbean and found the bridge deck to be low causing some slapping in beam seas. They are not at all a performance Cat and would have trouble staying up with most production monos on the breeze if at all.

For the money I would go with an older Outreemer for around the same money there are some late model 90's around that are great sailing craft but don't have the same interior volume.

For me
Leopard = Caravan
Outremmer = Touring car
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I have done extensive sailing on the Leopard 40' and I think you are confused between different models ! The previous model Leopard 38 (1997 - 2003, 60 or so units built) was a design by Alex Simonis and had quite low bridge deck clearance. That's why Gino Morelli and Pete Melvin were approached in 2004 to design a replacement model. This was the Leopard 40', built from 2004 to 2009. The Leopard 40' won all the awards a catamaran can possibly win, "Boat of the Year" in the US as well as in Australia.
During one of the test sails, the judges tried to tack all ~40' catamarans in 10 knots of wind under main sail alone. The Leopard 40' was the only catamaran to tack under mainsail alone in <10 knots.
As for the bridge deck clearance, below an email from Gino Morelli:


Underwing clearance:

Essentially we tried to have the same clearance fore and aft with no bumps or protruding features. The underwing is essentially level to the waterline from the mast to the transom when in perfect trim, The clearance from the waterline to the bottom of the underwing at the mast is 680mm (26.77inches) The underwing at the aft end of the underwing is the same, 680mm (26.77inches). In reality the boat trims stern down a bit due to weight loadings, dinghys on the stern or not, etc. So the fwd underwing clearance might go up an inch and the stern goes down an inch. This clearance is at 100% displacement which means full of water, fuel, dinghy, normal equipment, provisions, 5 people...
Hope that helps.
Gino

------
As for interior comfort, head room, access to systems, having 2 stall showers, a walk through cockpit and hardtop, there is little comparison with an Outremer 40'.

Attached the polar.

regards, Peter Wiersema -

Leopard Specialist peterw (at) yacht.com
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Old 20-03-2012, 19:35   #20
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

Attached the polar.

regards, Peter Wiersema -

Leopard Specialist peterw (at) yacht.com[/QUOTE]

How accurate do you think this polar is out of interest? ie is it just a theoretical or is this based on actual sea trials?

I ask because the polars on the L39 and the (admittedly limited 3 hour) test sail i did were very very different. Dont get me wrong i liked the boat but I got on board expecting something very different to what actually occurred in part due to these shall we say "optimistic" polars

cheers
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Old 21-03-2012, 02:58   #21
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

Hi Peter,

I appreciate you've done a lot of sailing. I have also done a little. I was brought up on a multihull as a kid and have sailed around the world as a professional Captain for the last 24 years of my life starting on commercial boats at the age of 14 so I'm not just BS'ing my way here.

I can honestly say that a bridge deck clearance of less than 800mm is very low. Maybe OK for coastal stuff and inshore but ocean going you'd be close to hitting wave tops in beam seas of any substantial size.

Also Peter what other Catamarans were in the sail test you mentioned? I doubt anything of serious ability like Tony Grainer, Schonning, Lidgard, Chris White. These designers will all tell you the importance of bridge deck clearance for sea keeping ability.

My thoughts and beliefs don't mean you can't sail one around the world I'm just giving my opinion based on personal experience as the topic heading asked.

For the money I think there is better options that have a greater seakeeping ability and that also offer better average speeds on long passages. My advice is too not believe all the hype, test sail boats in unpleasant conditions and make your own mind up with out the help of brokers or anyone that has a vested interest in selling the boats.

I own a multihull for the stability, speed, shallow draft, sailing experience and exterior space and the Leopard would only offer me the stability, shallow draft and space. At the end of the day each to their own.
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Old 21-03-2012, 06:06   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trimaranspirit
Hi Peter,

I appreciate you've done a lot of sailing. I have also done a little. I was brought up on a multihull as a kid and have sailed around the world as a professional Captain for the last 24 years of my life starting on commercial boats at the age of 14 so I'm not just BS'ing my way here.

I can honestly say that a bridge deck clearance of less than 800mm is very low. Maybe OK for coastal stuff and inshore but ocean going you'd be close to hitting wave tops in beam seas of any substantial size.

Also Peter what other Catamarans were in the sail test you mentioned? I doubt anything of serious ability like Tony Grainer, Schonning, Lidgard, Chris White. These designers will all tell you the importance of bridge deck clearance for sea keeping ability.

My thoughts and beliefs don't mean you can't sail one around the world I'm just giving my opinion based on personal experience as the topic heading asked.

For the money I think there is better options that have a greater seakeeping ability and that also offer better average speeds on long passages. My advice is too not believe all the hype, test sail boats in unpleasant conditions and make your own mind up with out the help of brokers or anyone that has a vested interest in selling the boats.

I own a multihull for the stability, speed, shallow draft, sailing experience and exterior space and the Leopard would only offer me the stability, shallow draft and space. At the end of the day each to their own.
There are to many variables to put minimum height on bridgedeck clearance. Width between the hulls, appendages hanging down and the actual shape of the bridgedeck would name a few.
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Old 24-03-2012, 14:06   #23
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

We just returned from a week on board a L40 in Tortola. The bows sit out of the water when the water tanks are empty. In one article by Morrelli, he said that it was by design, "more rocker" so that it would tack easier. Full water tanks bring the bows down to the water. Adding a genset in the forward lockers will also make it sit lower in the bows.

I noticed some slapping while under way and investigated. It turned out to be wave tops hitting the turn of the chine. None of the waves hit the bridgedeck. This was in 12-15kn at 120 degrees apparent, 6.5-7kn SOG. Draft is 3'10", which is a bit much, but probably helps with tracking and upwind performance. We were able to sail upwind at 45-50 degrees apparent (the wind instrument wasn't calibrated - one tack was 40 degrees and the other was 60 degrees).

We found that there is plenty of storage. It would be nice to have a little more cockpit locker space. The lazarette holds the life raft, power cord, and hose, which takes up most of the space. There is space there for spare lines.

We were happy with the bimini top clearance. There is a window in the sliding top over the helm station, allowing easy viewing of the sails even when the sliding top is closed. It does take getting used to looking through the slot. But we find that's not much different than other cats we've seen. We like the winches at the helm station and that the rig is setup for a spinnaker. Maneuvering was easy with the two engines. The 2-blade fixed props provide 6-6.5kn at 2200rpm. At WOT, they can push the boat to +7kn in reasonably flat water.

Almost all the panels below are held up with industrial-strength velcro, so access is easy. The electrical panel is clean and well documented in the owner's manual. Access to the engines is acceptable.

At +7kn, there is splashing around the dinghy davits. We have seen other L40s with splash panels between the dinghy davits and are planning to add one.

We found that all the moving parts needed lubrication. The boat had been in charter all its life, originally with Moorings, then with another firm. CRC-656 and some light oil fixed all that.

The cockpit layout worked well for us. The same level as the salon and the walk-through to the back deck are a plus for us. Access to the foredeck is easy. The hard-top bimini offered more safety for handling the main and boom than a narrow walkway and a soft top.

The prior owner outfitted the bow lockers with pneumatic lifters and stopper lines to help control the hatch covers. The Perko latches don't often align well and I don't like that it isn't easy to tell which way is the locked position - we'll fix that.

One of our other criteria was to be able to do the ICW - so a mast <65 ft. We measured 65 ft to the top of the VHF antenna, so we ok at 63 ft if we let the whip spank the bridge. We'll still need to watch bridge clearance. I noticed one bridge at 62 ft clearance this fall on a trip down the ditch.

I agree that the boat is more for coastal cruising than blue-water, but it can certainly do blue water, as Changing Spots has demonstrated. We've all agreed that the L40 is a great boat for our use, which is primarily Chesapeake and coastal cruising.

In our search, we found that a 2004/2005 out of charter goes for about $210K-$225K. There are others that go for a bit more. We saw one sale in the US for a 3-cabin owners version for $299K. You may be able to get a lower price for a boat in charter in the Leward Islands (e.g., St. Lucia), since it adds several days transit to get back to the US (assuming that's your intent). We worked with Phil Berman at The Multihull Company. He was helpful in helping identify the model and what boats were available and what the likely price would be. We looked at 4-5 L40s as well as about 7-8 other boat models.

All that said, do your homework, decide what features are important to you, and find a boat that meets your criteria.
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Old 25-03-2012, 15:52   #24
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

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I noticed some slapping while under way and investigated. It turned out to be wave tops hitting the turn of the chine. None of the waves hit the bridgedeck. This was in 12-15kn at 120 degrees apparent, 6.5-7kn SOG. .
According to the polars posted above the L40 should be doing more like 9.5 knots at 120 apparent?
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Old 27-03-2012, 00:36   #25
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

9.5 knots at 120 at 16 knots apparent with a gennaker. Between 14 and 16 knots at 120 under jib and main anywhere from 7.5 thru 8.2. As an L40 owner I would say that's accurate.

I have recently purchased Time zero Odyssey so I'll post a software created polar after I get the Nmea connection working.
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Old 28-03-2012, 00:21   #26
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

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9.5 knots at 120 at 16 knots apparent with a gennaker. Between 14 and 16 knots at 120 under jib and main anywhere from 7.5 thru 8.2. As an L40 owner I would say that's accurate.

I have recently purchased Time zero Odyssey so I'll post a software created polar after I get the Nmea connection working.
Looking forward to a real world polar mate. Looking at the posted polar again it seems you should be especting 11.5 knots plus with gennaker at 16knots APPARANT ie 20 knots true.

You are achieving much better than we did on our test sail though so i guess it says something about knowing your boat and for what its worth half windspeed isnt too shabby for a cruising boat IMHO its just that the dealer posted polar promises so much more....
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Old 02-04-2012, 08:25   #27
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

Gene,
What software are you using to generate your polars? I was thinking of generating our own polars, but using manual recording.
Thanks!
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Old 02-04-2012, 17:15   #28
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

Nobeltec TimeZero Odyssey. You have to also purchase the Sailing Plus Pack to enable the polar and optimal route calculation functionality. Check out the below link, pretty sweet if it all works.

Right now our L40 is 100% Raymarine so I had to purchase Ray's PC/SeaTalk/NMEA Interface Box or SKU E85001 to perform the Seatalk to NMEA0183 conversion. I should have everything up in the next couple of week's so I'll post an update once the SeaTalk to NMEA0183 feed is functioning properly.

Sailing Plus Pack

Gene
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Old 07-04-2012, 16:16   #29
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

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Camp Director G,

I am with you. Sitting here right now playing with my New iPad that just came out today. New stuff is always fun
Im sitting here right now and my wife is plying with me-shes much more fun than a stpid Ipod
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Old 07-04-2012, 16:20   #30
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Re: Leopard 40 Thoughts and Experiences

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Im sitting here right now and my wife is plying with me-shes much more fun than a stpid Ipod
So true
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