Sail power sail, yes, we had a good trip on the Open 40. There were definitely pros and cons to the design. While these are personal opinion, here is my review:
1. Good sailing performance (although the track on the self tacking jib
was sometimes reluctant to move w/o some assistance)
2. Twin helm positions were great for sailing
3. Large cockpit
was very comfortable and allowed everybody to be a part of the conversation while under sail.
4. Easy to single
hand (from stbd helm) where the mainsheet and traveler were easily worked.
5. Great amount of refrigeration
on board - two drawer refrigerator
in saloon, beverage fridge in cockpit and 2 drawer freezer
in starboard hull
6. Good feel at the helm. The proximity of the wheels to the rudder
placement meant there was little to no play in the linkage.
7. Good performance under power. I don't recall
SOG #'s or RPM
, but we would typically motor
around 2500 rpm
and made good progress w/ minimal noise
8. Very smart electrical
setup. The system was able to automatically switch between shore/generator/battery power without having to think about switching breakers off and on in some well defined order. It was nice to be able to ask my wife to turn something on or off w/o her having to ask for instructions every time. AC outlets accepted both 110 and 220 plugs. Hopefully this is a trend that all builders move toward.
1. Terrible ventilation in all of the 4 cabins. Aft staterooms had only two port holes and no top hatch
so there was practically no airflow thru the aft cabins while at anchor/moored. Front cabins not much better because the top hatch
was aft of the bed
so any air moving thru did not reach the person sleeping. (Perhaps we are odd in the fact that we prefer to not run generator/AC?)
2. Terrible ventilation in the galley
. With the galley
forward, when cooking
the heat from the sun thru the windshield + the heat from the cooktop/stove would accumulate. Opening the top hatch helped some but with no forward hatch, the airflow was poor to say the least.
3. Galley equipment
itself is tiny. While there is decent counter space, the sink is small, as is the 2 burner hob and the oven
. I can't imagine cooking
for 8 (we were a group of 4) in this galley on a regular basis.
4. All that refrigeration
was hard on the batteries - we ended up motoring on day three just to get the batteries back up to a full charge. Running genset for several hours each evening helped some, but the charge was always less than 100% before we wanted quiet.
5. Raising the main was more work than we would have liked. 2-1 purchase
on main halyard
at the mast
with some sticky batten cars was a pain. Also, there was no good place to store lines at the mast
- a little tricky finding places to keep the lines from interfering with the jib
6. Main traveler did not move easily under load when the sail was up. (I've experienced this now on all cats we've chartered. Perhaps I am doing something wrong?)
7. The helm positions were not so great when approaching mooring
balls. As you get up closer to the ball, the helmsman loses all sight of it. Not a big deal as long as you have good communication with people up front.
8. Our first night, on shore power
, we did run the AC. The units were loud and the one in the saloon could not keep up with the heat generated thru the saloon windows. (This may be specific to our boat and not common to the design.)
1. we had two mechanical issues come up during the trip. First, the port water
tank had an air leak which caused issues getting water
to flow properly from that tank. The charter company even sent a technician on board who spent almost 1.5 hours trying to resolve the issue to no avail. (I think the charter manager first thought I was just being a "dump charter captain" when I raised the issue based on our conversations. ) Second, the raw water pump
that brings water to the galley failed - the tech simply disconnected the power which was fine by us as we never used it. The charter company was more than fair in their handling of the issues w/ fresh water, waiving our entire diesel fuel
bill and paying for our water refill.
2. Most concerning thing we noticed was while we were at the marina our first night. The aft port cleat was clearly under excessive stress as the boat moved in her slip. Closer examination one day while checking engine oil
, belts, etc revealed the problem. The outer hull
shell overlapped the inner shell. The aft cleat backing plate was only contacting the half of the glass, and the thru bolts were right at the seam edge. When the cleat was put under load, the backing plate had nothing to press against so the entire glass structure flexed. We could see the cracks in the glass every time the port side of the boat drifted from the pier.
3. There is an overly heavy reliance on caulk to fill gaps between major structural elements. I can't help but think that this will cause long-term owners a lot of headaches in the future.
4. The boat gets noticed! On two different occasions, we had people dinghy
over to take a look at the boat. It is definitely a stand out in the sea of Leopard
and FP cats that seem to make up the majority of charter boats in the BVIs.
Hope this review is helpful.