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Old 19-04-2013, 17:35   #1
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New Catamarans on the Market

I've been reading Multihulls World magazine (which I love - well worth the dollars for a hard copy subscription) and there are some new (or relatively new) cats popping onto the market. Anyone know anything about the Aventura 33, the Lady Hawke 33, the Akea cats, or O Yachts? I found some info online but French sites don't translate well and I was wondering if anyone has any info or comments. Anyone know these boats?
Aventura 33.eu
catamaran for sale | O Yachts
Akea Catamaran
Lady Hawke Catamarans | For passionate about sailing

And lastly, some of these smaller cats have tillers rather than wheels. I have heard people say they have more "feel" than steering wheels, but they seem like they might be a pain. Comments?
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Old 19-04-2013, 17:43   #2
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

I learned to sail using a tiller. Tillers push back better telling you what is happening. It seems that many who learned on wheels don't appreciate the greater sensitivity of a tiller.
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Old 19-04-2013, 17:59   #3
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

Tillers are good. The problem is that some models have tillers that leave you out in the sun. Tillers are very responsive and give you a feedback in your hand that a wheel just does not do. We have her on autopilot 90% of the time so a tiller feed back would be lost with us piloting the boat.
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Old 19-04-2013, 20:47   #4
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

Anyone know anything about these boats? Perhaps I shouldn't have put in the tiller comment!
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Old 19-04-2013, 21:27   #5
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

Did you see that the O yacht 46 is available as a bare hull for 109,000? And those boats have good specs. Good link G.
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Old 25-04-2013, 02:20   #6
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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Originally Posted by David M View Post
I learned to sail using a tiller. Tillers push back better telling you what is happening. It seems that many who learned on wheels don't appreciate the greater sensitivity of a tiller.
I love a tiller too, when sailing a dinghy or beach cat and catching the puffs. When cruising its autopilot 99% of the time.

I just don't get these cats where the helm is the only place you can see forward, and everyone else sitting in the cockpit is staring at the back of the bridge deck. When it comes to accepting the basic facts that most sail on autopilot, want to see forward when not glued to the helm chair, and might actually like to be near their crew/guests while keeping an eye forward, it seems that only Chris White's Atlantics and Maine Cat offer a solution.
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Old 25-04-2013, 02:22   #7
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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only Chris White's Atlantics and Maine Cat offer a solution.
And Seawind
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Old 26-04-2013, 02:54   #8
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

I really like the look of the LadyHawk but then it was designed by Eric Lerouge and I like most of his designs. For such a relatively
small catamaran it still looks good and seaworthy which other similar boats don't carry off so well.
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Old 26-04-2013, 11:25   #9
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

I've been hearing lately about up-and-coming catamaran builders claiming the want to address the cruiser's market, which has been left behind by the other cat builders who are designing for the charter market.

What I have not been able to get a bead on is exactly what features does a cruiser desire that a charter design does not meet? All the charter makers create an OV version for those who want it.

The only thing I can think of is the stupid double-head on the guest hull. Other than that, what do I need as a cruiser that is not in the Lagoon/FP/Leopard design?
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Old 26-04-2013, 11:31   #10
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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The only thing I can think of is the stupid double-head on the guest hull. Other than that, what do I need as a cruiser that is not in the Lagoon/FP/Leopard design?
Less windage, less weight, better sailing ability.
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Old 27-04-2013, 10:26   #11
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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I...what do I need as a cruiser that is not in the Lagoon/FP/Leopard design?
It's the other way around. What cruisers requires 4 cabin 4 head layouts?

No one
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Old 27-04-2013, 10:38   #12
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

The typical charter cat packs as much accommodation in as possible, while the typical cruising couple needs other things, like storage lockers, visibility from the helm, easy handling, less windage, better sailing ability, good ground tackle handling gear, places to put solar panels and wind generators, easy dinghy handling, easy engine access, simple systems that are owner serviceable in remote places, etc.
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Old 27-04-2013, 16:38   #13
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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What I have not been able to get a bead on is exactly what features does a cruiser desire that a charter design does not meet? All the charter makers create an OV version for those who want it.
*caveat* up front, I have not owned a cruising sailboat (I did own a 30' dive boat for a bit), but have sailed and raced for many years, and have done bareboat charters for 20+ years and am shopping for my own cruising cat. So these are opinions from a shopper and charterer, not an experienced owner.

For years, I always tried to charter bigger, faster, different boats as I liked expanding my skills and experiencing new designs. After a charter of a Catana 50 in BVI, I finally said, this boat is too big. Coincidentally, shortly after I got home I ran across a reference to a book called "Sensible Cruising, the Thoreau Approach" here on CF. I recommend you check it out of your local library or order a copy. It's an old book, but holds many wise truths about the recent trend to boats that are much too big, too complicated, pack too much stuff into a hull that is too wide and/or too short, etc. There are lots of cliches that have cropped up over the years that reflect this ethos, e.g. "go small go now", or "drinks for 6, dinner for 4, sleeps 2", or "cruising = fixing your boat in remote places".

Conveniences are nice, and modern boats are much more ergonomic than older ones, but all things in moderation.

Like I said above, the Atlantics, Maine Cats, and Seawinds (thanks Factor) seem to be better for cruisers than charters, but are all more pricey due to lower volume of production and focus on simpler/higher quality systems.

It's sad to me that all these new models from the new builders mentioned above all follow the same formula/layout from the FP/Lagoon/RCs. From a business point of view, can their low labor costs offset the economies of scale, distribution, and brand recognition that the big boys have? Seems doubtful if their product isn't differentiated.

Just my $0.02.
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Old 27-04-2013, 23:55   #14
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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It's the other way around. What cruisers requires 4 cabin 4 head layouts?

No one
Right, but that seems like a poor reason to start a new catamaran construction company - I get the sense that these fellows think there is something MAJORLY non-cruisy about those "big boys".

I suspect it is just marketing noise. They see a big market with few players and are looking for a niche, I suppose.
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Old 27-04-2013, 23:58   #15
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Re: New Catamarans on the Market

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Originally Posted by Kettlewell View Post
The typical charter cat packs as much accommodation in as possible, while the typical cruising couple needs other things, like storage lockers, visibility from the helm, easy handling, less windage, better sailing ability, good ground tackle handling gear, places to put solar panels and wind generators, easy dinghy handling, easy engine access, simple systems that are owner serviceable in remote places, etc.
This is what I was thinking as well, but it seems as though it is fairly easy to convert the accommodation space to storage - I've seen feedback from many cruisers saying that they've done just that. A head becomes a utility closet, a bunk becomes a storage locker or pantry. After those simple modifications, I feel like a charter layout is the perfect cruising boat...

But then my idea of "cruising" is lazily making way from one sandy beach or European village to the next. I've assumed that's the majority - at least among cat owners, but perhaps it is not.
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