We have owned our Manta
40 for 7 years now and have been cruising on it full time in the Bahamas
for the past 2 years.
It is a wonderful live-aboard cruising boat that is designed and outfitted specifically for single
handed sailing and live aboard for a couple or a couple with 1-2 kids
did not build for the charter
industry and marketed their boats directly to cruisers.
The electrical system
is very well done - probably the best in the industry - and far better than the french cats for 110V use. All wiring
is run in dedicated conduits throughout the boat, and no expense was spared in setting up the electrical
The systems are professionally well-installed, but maintenance
is like any other well-installed systems. Expect little to no maintenance
from the solar panels
(I wipe salt
off mine after rough passages), and routine maintenance on watermaker
, air conditioning
and other components. These components aren't really boat-specific other than the quality of the installation
We love the Camberspar jib
. It has a half-wishbone boom run through it with full battens. When raised, it is sprung tight like a windsurfer sail and is very efficient. It is self-vanging and self-tacking and runs wing and wing like a dream because it stays vanged tight and has a built-in whisker pole. It is a small sail for light airs, but it is far more efficient than a roller furled genoa
, so this helps a bit. Instead for light air, Manta provided an asymmetric
on a roller furl unit. This won't work on a beat, but we can carry ours to 60* apparent.
I don't know what you mean by the hull
shape amidship causing bulldozing. The hulls are typical U-shaped - getting fine at the bows and moving to a slight rocker in the sterns. This is how most catamarans are designed.
The bridgedeck clearance could be greater. The boat was originally a 36' LaRouge design that was stretched to 38', then 40', then 42'. And a lot of systems were added (generator, larger engines, AC, watermaker, washer/dryer, 660AH batteries, inverter/charger, 300lb dinghy
in the davits
, etc), not to mention the large aluminum
hardtop. We soda blasted our bottom this year back to gel coat and could see the originally designed water
line that was lightly etched into the mold
. The original waterline was 3" lower than the standard Manta waterline and 5" lower than our liveaboard
However, the shape of the bridgedeck is curved and smooth with no protrusions and starts 15' back from the bows, so this helps mitigate slamming by quite a lot as there is very little flat surface to put pressure against.
well and we do 50% windspeed up to 8-9kts boat speed (20kt wind) and then we feel the need to reef to keep it in that range. We don't sail well below 10kts unless we are reaching with the spinnaker
. Before moving aboard with everything we own, we were much lighter and would readily sail in 6-10kt windspeed and reach 9-10kts boat speed in 15-20kt winds. The boat points and tracks well - at least as well as most cruising monos and better than a lot of them.
As an aside, I have found that all the discussions and debate on multihull
speeds are humorous. Offshore
, we find ourselves almost always slowing the boat down purposefully to keep it around 6-7kts simply for comfort. Boats become very noising and jumpy when pushed hard at full speeds offshore
. We match our speeds to the wind/wave comfort conditions, which usually means 6-7kts. Faster, and we find ourselves lurching off waves or getting slapped in the side of the hull.
I think the accommodations for a couple are fantastic. But keep in mind this is really a 36' boat designed in the early 90's. The gross interior
volume will not be anywhere near that of one of the new charter
designs from Lagoon
, FP, etc for the given nominal length. The volume does compare with the Lagoon
38 and is a bit larger than the FP 36.
and full head
are the best you will find in a boat this size. Full cupboards, large work areas, lots of storage
, 6cf reefer and 4cf freezer
with 9" of foam insulation
, full walk-in shower
, large medicine cabinet and mirror, large pantry. Two standard queen births that take off-the-self bedding with full hanging lockers and storage
drawers in each stateroom.
The hardtop is the best feature bar none, and better designed and implemented than any other catamaran
. It is my favorite part of the boat. After owning the boat for one year, I decided that the Manta was worth buying
over any other boat on this feature alone. Acres of space for solar panels
, complete cockpit
sun shading, large rainwater collector, tons of mounting space for antennas, radar
, etc, built-in optimal counterpoise
, hoisting ability for up to a 13' 800lb dinghy
package - the list just goes on. It does add 600lbs to the boat, though.
I would change nothing about the interior
for living aboard
. I don't think it can really be improved for our needs. I think the design would be improved with more bridgedeck clearance (wouldn't every boat?) and either fuller hulls, or a longer stern to help carry the load a bit better. Keep in mind that we are overloaded, and Manta did lengthen the boats 2' in the stern since ours was built. Fuller hulls would make for a slower boat. We could also always throw crap out, but we never seem to get around to it. Also, the saloon
windows are slanted like a lot of cats and this lets in a lot of heat. We have white textaline covers over ours which blocks all of the heat and still provides some visibility outside, and Manta later added louvers, but I think the Lagoon vertical windows are really the way to go. Ugly as hell, but as practical and functional as you can get.
Lots of discussions with the company always came up with Manta owners, or people looking at Mantas, around "could you change it to have"...a flybridge, big sliding glass doors opening the whole inside to the outside, a wet bar, a big roller furler genoa
, etc. I asked a lot of these questions to the factory myself. Manta always responded "live on it for a while and then ask questions". I can tell you that I wouldn't want any of those things after living aboard ours. It is a very well thought out boat.