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Old 12-08-2005, 03:09   #1
Kai Nui
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Piver Lodestar 35

My new project is a Piver Lodestar 35' trimaran. My first multihull, and before all the critics come out, the price was very right.
I have researched the Lodestar, and one of the big issues appears to be weight outboard of the main hull. As with most of these boats, the cabin does extend to about the middle of the outer amas. I have heard varied opinions from carry nothing, to sails only to it's a cruising boat so who cares, regarding the capacity of the outer amas. Does anyone have any real info on this? I would like to put collapsable water tanks in the outer amas. 160 to 240 pounds per ama does not seem a lot, but the reason I am buying and trying the trimaran is the speed, so if I am not going to be able to get over 10 kts... Well... Plan B. I have already considered weight balance between the tanks, so the only issue is can the boat handle the outboard weight.
For now, my plans include coastal only, but if I like it enough, I may sell my Mono, and do some bluewater with this tri.
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Old 12-08-2005, 03:36   #2
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The lodestars were the prototypical do-it-yourself trimarran of the 1960's and I believe was the design that Piver disappeared at sea in. They were fast as compared to the long keel, short waterline monohulls of the day, but would not be all that fast compared to a modern monohull or performance multi-hull.

There were a variety of issues with these boats including the strength of the connections between the amas and aka. It is my understanding that they could carry some weight in the Ama's but that care should be taken not to overload them. On an intuitive level, it wou seem as if they should be able to carry 150-180 lbs of weight if that weight is carefully distributed near the center and perhaps slightly aft of the center of buoyancy of the amas. I would think of this as being similar to the weight of a man standing on the deck of the ama. One way to test this would be to have someone stand or sit above the spot where you plan to place the tank and see what happens.

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Old 12-08-2005, 03:56   #3
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This particular tri is not the stock Piver design. The connections are not Piver's design, and a number of other major mods have been done. I have spoken with several close friends who have sailed on this boat with the previous owner, and have seen over 20kts, so I am not to worried about the design. The boat is out of the water now, and gutted. In the interest of saving money and convenience, I want to get as much done on the hard as possible. If I can not put tanks in the amas, I will have to make room for them elsewhere, hence my hope of finding someone who knows ahead of time.
You make a very good point about the weight comparison, and testing. If I can not get any real info, I will launch with the boat still stripped, and move some lead around underway, but that is plan B.
Piver did disappear off the coast of Ca on a trimaran, but I think it was one of his other designs. At least I am sure it wasn't this boat. Or was it??????
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Old 12-08-2005, 19:13   #4
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Where Water Tanks?

If the boat is gutted, you have many options. Isn't the logical place, whether mono or tri, as low and as central as possible?

Indeed, shouldn't the heaviest stuff be as low as possible in any boat, and on or as close as possible to the line between the centre of effort of the sails, and the centre of effort of the lateral resistance?

I would keep the amas for bulky, light storage to get the best bouyancy possible from them. They provide the righting moment that controls the wetness, comfort, and the angle of attack of your sails (therefore your speed). Why not rearrange your storage to this end?

I suppose if heavy weight is located in both amas, centrally located, then half is working as a counterweight, but isn't this difficult to manage on the long term for consumables?

I notice that there are plastic tank manufacturers that can make solid wall tanks of any shape. I had some priced in Trinidad to replace my aluminum tanks, and thought the numbers were quite reasonable. If they can do it, it must be available elsewhere.

Just my opinion, so don't be shy...
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Old 12-08-2005, 21:52   #5
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I (think I) recall that Arthur Piver disappeared off Mexico (68?) in a borrowed boat.
Does anyone if if it was one of his own designs?
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Old 13-08-2005, 00:40   #6
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Arthur Piver disappeared off of the Pacific Coast. I think that you are right that he was delivering a boat back from Mexico. I don't think that it was a borrowed boat but I believe that you are right that he did not own the boat. It was one of his designs and I believe that it was a lodestar.

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Old 13-08-2005, 02:40   #7
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The logic is good. Heavy components low and to center, but the big difference between a trimaran and a monohull when arranging the interior is the fact that the main hull on a tri has far less space, including less bilge space. Custom tanks are something I have been considering. I could probably get the capacity that I want in the bilge with custom tanks, but that is all I could use the bilge for.
As for Arthur Piver's demise, the only thing I have been able to confirm is that he was testing a new boat. I have been told by one source that it was a new design, not the lodstar or nimble, but he can not cite his source. Stay tuned.... Now I am on a mission.
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Old 06-09-2005, 04:10   #8
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You would think someone this important to the inovation of boats would be easy to find info on, but no luck. I did read part of Trans Pacific Trimaran, but I can not say much for Mr Piver as a writer. I am sure he holds the interest of some readers, but I am not one of them. I guess his mystique will remain intact.
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Old 19-09-2005, 23:07   #9
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A little more info, Piver died at 58 years old off the California coast between San Francisco and San Diego. (lost at sea) He departed on March 17th and was reported overdue on March 31st 1968. He was sailing on a 25' Piver Nugget, accumulating sea time for the 1968 OSTAR.
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Old 05-11-2005, 13:57   #10
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Hello Kai Nui;

I just joined this forum and wanted to reply to this topic since I own a 30ft Piver Nimble built in 1980.

Piver was indeed lost off the Calif. coast in 1968 while doing a qualifying solo-sail for the upcoming Transpac. It is reported that the boat he was sailing was a borrowered 25ft Nugget that was not built very well and perhaps leaked quite abit.

If you have read some of his writing you might deduce that He was quick to jump on a boat and just start sailing away! all of the Trimarans He sailed on and wrote about were not finished on the inside because He was more interested in getting out there!

This is fresh to me because I have just finished reading all of His books and a couple of others written by His sales agent in England, of Cox Marine fame. Also as stated I own a Nimble and it is built very well for this type of boat. I sail in S. California off Newport and Long Beach over to Catalina. The Dream is to sail it to the Sea of Cortez in a year or 2. Work is somewhat in the way at the moment

Maybe you could consider the flexible tanks that are out there now since they take up less space than an equivalent solid one and the main hull low in the bilge is best from all I have read.

Best wishes,
Kelly.
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Old 05-11-2005, 17:52   #11
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The flexible tanks are what I had in mind. I have since spoken to a friend who has a 42' Piver, and he does not seem to think it will be an issue to put water tanks out there.
I am curious about your info on Piver, as I have read a number of times, that he was qualifying for an OSTAR, not TransPac.
Anyway, welcome Kelldog, and hope to see some pics of your Nimble on the sight.
How do you have your tankage set up?
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Old 09-11-2005, 00:44   #12
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I do not have tanks in my boat yet. I bring a carton of the 16 oz water bottles since they are easily managed while solo-sailing. I am redoing the interior of my Boat so i have taken sink out. Will replace it soon with water tank as low as I can get it. I will try and post a couple of Pics in the photo section.

It was the Transpac he was qualifying for. At the time there was a rule that you had to solo-sail at least 500 miles offshore in order to do the Transpac. He had decided to sail down to LA or San Diego.

Kelly.
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Old 09-11-2005, 20:01   #13
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I had heard L.A. Usually an easy trip, but the Pacific Coast can be very unforgiving if she is in the mood. Not too many places to jump in and get out of the thick, and allot of shipping traffic not far off shore. A friend of mine was lost a few months back north of Half Moon Bay. It is believed that he was run down by a Korean cargo ship, but the coasties are too busy raiding live aboards to take time to investigate further.
Been the jug water route. Works for daysails, but turns into a bit of work for longer stuff.
I look forward to seeing the pics.
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Old 16-01-2006, 07:25   #14
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Kai Nui,

Keep us posted on your progress..the first "big" boat I ever sailed was our family's Texas Trimaran 30....a Piver design built in the early 70's.

Our particular boat had been built for a circ that never happened...it was WAY too heavy to perform. Learned the lesson about weight and multi's..

It had glassed-in tanks in the ama's... If you were doing a long passage you could draw from the leeward tanks and make like water ballast.

My current experience with the flexible water tanks has not been good...been through a couple of the Plastimo's and finally gave up due to leaks where the fittings join the tanks.

Curtis
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Old 17-01-2006, 00:16   #15
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Thanks for that Curtis. I have decided to put all of my tankage in the main hull. THe engine is due to arrive tommorrow. Weather has slowed me down a bit, but I am still plugging along. Just bought all the plumbing for the head, and all the paint. I hope to be able to post some pics of the progress next month. I had hoped to launch the first weekend in February, but it does not look like that is going to happen.
I had been wnating to concentrate most of the weight towards the stern, but after reading some posts about engine size on cats, it occured to me that I was putting too much weight astern, and rather than putting more weight in the ammas, I could balance out my engine and mechanical systems by putting my tankage forward. This should give be better performance under power, and still not cause the bow to bury under sail. While the weight astern has been reduced from the original design, the previous owner was placing 500 pounds of balast aft to compensate for no engine. I am adding approx 900 pounds with engine, batteries, and fuel tanks. THe boat was built with amma specs from a 40' tri, so I have more bouyancy forward than a standard 35, so I think I will be able to handle a few hundred pounds forward. If it would just stop raining for a week or two, I could get back on schedule.
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