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Old 31-05-2010, 16:11   #31
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Originally Posted by Palarran View Post
I personally can't see a forward helm working. On every cat I've sailed, we take on water periodically. Either it's spray or a wave or water hits the tramp and it comes across the boat. Being 20' closer to that doesn't appeal to me. It also cuts up the boat as you have a small forward helm area, a small bridgedeck cabin, and a small rear cockpit.
Well, I've done some reasonably serious offshore work in my A42 (including a non-stop from NZ to Hawaii with over a week hard on the wind in well developed near gale conditions) and IME, the forward helm is great. But, tastes vary (thank goodness). As soon as one puts a house with standing headroom on a cat some compromises on steering location are inevitable. When I was looking at cruising cats the 6 foot wall at the front of most cockpits was a daunting issue. I'm obsessive about watch keeping and a helm station that was high or off to one side so that a substantial portion of the view forward was obscured by the jib when beating was not going to work for me. I've been on cats where the primary winches are 20' apart, where sail controls had long and tortuous leads, and where boom height and jib shape and leads were greatly compromised to work around the house. The forward cockpit can overcome these shortcomings and it keeps you low in the boat which I think makes for a kinder ride in a seaway. And, most of the time it isn't wet. But, TANSTAAFL. A boat like mine with just the center cockpit and small pilot house does not provide the free-flowing, dance hall openness that many similar sized cats have. And, there is no doubt that in really snotty wx with the wind forward of the beam you must be prepared to don foulies. ... To each their own... Anyway, it works well for me.

Tom
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Old 31-05-2010, 22:26   #32
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I wasn't trying to be critical, I was just posting my thoughts on the helm location. I wouldn't have purchased a Catana due to their helm locations also. I'm sure your boat is bluewater capable. The only real concern I'd have is water and I still can't see how your not getting hit by three times more spray then on a regular cat. But, I've never been on one so maybe there different.
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Old 01-06-2010, 00:46   #33
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I wasn't trying to be critical, I was just posting my thoughts on the helm location. I wouldn't have purchased a Catana due to their helm locations also. I'm sure your boat is bluewater capable. The only real concern I'd have is water and I still can't see how your not getting hit by three times more spray then on a regular cat. But, I've never been on one so maybe there different.
No worries. Thoughtful criticism is good. I don't believe that the center cockpit is perfect. It is a compromise and some folks will like it and some will not. And, of course, context matters. I happen to like mine in the service we put it to and since the subject came up I wanted to add my experience into the pot. Of course, in some circumstances it can be quite wet. But most of the time it is rather civilized. And, an aft cockpit can be wet at times too. I remember chatting with Ron Given on one of his catamarans in New Caledonia when he pointed out a big round hatch in the middle of the cockpit. Apparently on his previous trip to New Zealand the cockpit had been so seriously flooded and Ron, a veteran mariner, so concerned about it, that he had chopped a freeing port into it right then and there. He said he never would have believed that a wave could fill the cockpit if he hadn't experienced it. And I understand why since the boat was a very well designed and seaworthy 50 footer with typical cockpit drainage and a great many blue water miles under her keels... A little spray into a small centrally located cockpit might not be so bad comparatively... YMMV, of course.

Tom
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Old 01-06-2010, 09:19   #34
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A breaking wave pooping my boat is if fact my largest offshore concern. There is no way my cockpit would drain that amount of water. Before my planned Atlantic crossing I'm going to have to do a similar modification.

Sorry for the thread drift, but it's at least worth while to note this feature when looking at new boats.
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Old 05-06-2010, 19:47   #35
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Schionning

Has anyone seen any Schionning designs built professionally? I wonder how the build quality compares to say a Leopard 46. I really like their designs but wonder about the quality of the design, not vacuum bagged, overall strength as they are about half the weight of a Leopard 46. Built to last?

Never seen one first hand, but have to say some of the nicest designs out there and seem to be real performers.

Tropical Home
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Old 05-06-2010, 23:00   #36
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Has anyone seen any Schionning designs built professionally?
There are several professional builders who work with Schionning designs. Fraser Coast Custom and Stallion Marine would be two of the more prominent (in the sense that they advertise their association with Schionning builds) but there are probably others too. The quality may be more up to the builder than the designer, of course.

http://www.stallionmarine.com.au/

http://www.spiriteddesigns.com.au/te...0marine%20.pdf

Our experience with Schionning designs is that they are certainly quick(er than 'production' vessels) and very seaworthy too, although they are not spec'd to carry the sorts of long-run loads (fuel, water, pax, etc) of a Leopard 46.
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Old 06-06-2010, 04:57   #37
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Quote:

Tropical Home wrote:
"I wonder how the build quality compares to say a Leopard 46."

No comparison!
The construction of Schionning designs are all epoxy skinned. Most professional builders in Australia will use either foam or balsa core. Stallion Marine recommended foam when I spoke to them. But you can't really compare the two. They are totally different animals. The Schionning is a performance cruiser: a hand built epoxy over (usually) foam, customised to the layout and taste of the customer. Schionning make various designs, some are more performance orrientated than others. Many have won offshore races in Australia.
The Leopard on the other hand, is a polyester resin (the cheapest resin) over balsa (the cheapest core) factory boat made by a charter boat company (R&C is owned by the Moorings) to be a cheap charter boat. It is well designed for that purpose.
One is a tailored suit, the other is "off the shelf" jeans.
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:43   #38
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I have been looking at the Waterline 17m and the new G-Force, I understand they are totally different machines than a Leopard, but wonder how they would hold up after 20 years of use. Also the quality of the workmanship. I own a Leopard 46, but thinking of selling and going with a more performance based boat. I like the space and layout of my boat and would need a 17m Schionnings to equal the same space, but then would give me the performance I am looking for. A 17m version of the Barracka would be perfect! Thinking Diesel electric as well, only 1 motor to maintain and solar all around. Want to keep it simple.

Cheers

Tropical Home
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Old 06-06-2010, 12:26   #39
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... Thinking Diesel electric as well, only 1 motor to maintain and solar all around. Want to keep it simple.
Maybe there was something new in D/E at the show? But from what I've heard and in my very limited experience the hybrid systems are more complex and less reliable than plain old diesel. Far more expensive and, heavier for the same installed power. The diesel-electric concept is fascinating and all but at this point I still believe it is "developmental". So, more appropriate for the well funded tinkerer than a KISS cruiser...

Tom
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Old 04-07-2010, 15:10   #40
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Did you know that a Fusion 40 was lengthened to around 44' to carry more load and it went well. Also the Fusion 40 builders in Mackay are currently working on doing this mod to the kits. You might want to ask them as you are in the same city?
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Old 10-02-2011, 22:32   #41
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Actual Freeflow experience

Does anyone here have actual experience with a FreeFlow cat?
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Old 10-02-2011, 23:18   #42
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Mick,

the experience I have is ocassionally visiting and watching progress of the FF46 being built at Coomera.

Nathan Stanton the designer is building it in the same shed as he built the first Lightwave vessel. check progress of the build here.

Picture Gallery - FreeFlow 46 Construction

ticks all boxes for me - only need to see this one in water (should be launched by May)

Flat deck design, quality infused foam construction, interior design custonisable, large, fantastic for liveaboard, load carrying built into design to carry plenty of fuel/water so as not to be lugging cans in remote areas.

Shade for tropics, good airflow, cockpit and saloon built in water channels.
best cockpit hardtop I have seen.

Slender hulls all weight centered (mid- mounted motors with plenty of access), reliability of shaft drive. Plenty of head room for tall people.

The smart modern design will put this cat among the pidgeons. Really set up well for practical long term distance crusing with many of best ideas out there. Just check out the ventilation with the cockpit windows .

No 1 on my list. I think it is a very good evolution of the Lightwave 45 from Nathan's experience in the industry.

The problem with just lengthening a Fusion 40 to 44 is it is a much smaller vessel for a large person. Lengthing might also improve the small, poor engine bay . Fusion is a good looking boat however.

cheers

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Old 12-02-2011, 13:58   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tuskie View Post
Quote:

Tropical Home wrote:
"I wonder how the build quality compares to say a Leopard 46."

No comparison!
The construction of Schionning designs are all epoxy skinned. Most professional builders in Australia will use either foam or balsa core. Stallion Marine recommended foam when I spoke to them. But you can't really compare the two. They are totally different animals. The Schionning is a performance cruiser: a hand built epoxy over (usually) foam, customised to the layout and taste of the customer. Schionning make various designs, some are more performance orrientated than others. Many have won offshore races in Australia.
The Leopard on the other hand, is a polyester resin (the cheapest resin) over balsa (the cheapest core) factory boat made by a charter boat company (R&C is owned by the Moorings) to be a cheap charter boat. It is well designed for that purpose.
One is a tailored suit, the other is "off the shelf" jeans.
The vast majority of Schionning's boats are built using either Duflex or Durakore, with balsa cores. In fact the option for foam cores only became available a few years ago, and only in some designs. (Switching to foam cores requires significant re-engineering due to foam's vastly inferior mechanical properties.)

Schionning Designs -

"Material Choice


Our designs are based on cored composite construction techniques using epoxy resin and knitted fabrics.

RESIN

We use epoxy for its high strength and adhesive values. It also fully protects the boat against water absorption and it can not develop Osmosis. We choose ATL Composite's resin systems as they are the highest strength and quality at the best dollar value.

CLOTH

We prefer Colan brand cloths for their quality and low resin absorption, custom made for Schionning Marine at six (6) stitches per square inch for easy wet our and rounding corners.

CORES - Which one to use?

The core choice is usually quite confusing. Cores have different capabilities and are used I feel in their best application in our designs. A quick look at their abilities:

Balsa end grain (150 kg/cubic metre) has exceptional qualities, very high compression strength, very good sheer capabilities and very good sheer stiffness.

Compressive strength is the resistance to collapsing when pressure is applied perpendicular to the surface as when pushing directly onto the material with the point of your finger. Balsa is far stronger than Foam (80kg/cubic metre) in compression. Foam is stronger than honeycomb both paper and plastic.

Balsa is also far better than foam or honeycomb in sheer. This is when the core sample is held flat between your hands, one hand slid one way and the other slid the opposite way when the core tears through the middle it has failed in sheer. The amount of stretch you feel before the core shears is shear stiffness. To compensate for sheer weakness the core is made thicker. So 13mm Balsa may be equal in sheer to 19mm Foam.

Paper Honeycomb (50kg/cubic metre) is very efficient and lighter than the other core choices. This can be used for external use but needs extreme care to prevent water penetration. Ideally it is used for all internal furniture and smaller bulkheads. Should water get into the core you lose 50% of its values. It can be suction dried and restored back to full strength. Paper Honeycomb has similar strength and sheer ability in the vein lines and about 80% across the veins compared to Foam.

Our hull skin thickness is quite thin, we therefore find the core works harder and it's stiffness is noticed in the finished structure (sheer stiffness). Generally a balsa or WRC shell is noticeably stiffer than a foam boat using equivalent laminates.

COMMON SENSE SUMMARY

Core Weights: Balsa End Grain 150kg per cubic metre

SuperLight Balsa 94kg per cubic metre

Foam 80kg/cu.m 80kg per cubic metre

Paper Honeycomb 50kg per cubic metre

Western Red Cedar 360-380kg per cu.m


Balsa has very good values and we can produce a shell using a very light laminate. It will be very stiff and very resilient to fatigue.

Foam There are many boats sailing that are built from foam so even with its poorer values it works well. Initially one would expect this cat shell to be lighter as it is ˝ the weight of Balsa. We do have to compensate for its weaknesses and will then add at least double the reinforcement on the outside to spread that compression load over more core and need a triaxial type weave to compensate for the veneer content that runs fore and aft on the Durakore. Secondly, we need to increase the Core thickness to compensate for the shear value, usually neutralizing the weight advantage. Thirdly, foam absorbs a lot more resin into the open surface cells than timber and so increases weight. Fourth, foam is an inert type material tending to follow the surface and not naturally stay fair, fairing usually uses more bog and again adds weight. Fifth, because of the inert characteristics, foam requires a much more complex control mould, this takes a lot more time and is slightly expensive.

The end result using Foam in my experience is always a heavier shell with less stiffness. Professional builders can achieve a good result but usually use vacuum bagging and very good molds to achieve this.

The Wilderness 1230 has a foam option. It weighs 200kg less than the Balsa version.

Honeycomb needs to be much thicker and needs much heavier laminates which makes it a silly choice for cat shells. (Nomex excluded)

Western Red Cedar has all the advantages of strip Durakore, but has a real weight penalty because of its higher core weight.

These are the reasons we prefer Durakore for home built cats.

SECONDARY ISSUES

1. Water penetration into the cores

Balsa can absorb water. It needs extreme neglect to rot (very unusual). Water soaks along the end grain quickly. It travels very slowly across the grain. We use balsa under the waterline especially because of it's high compression strength for beaching etc. any core type must be sealed. Damage to all cores results in the same sort of repair. Notice a damp spot remaining when drying out to anti-foul… simply grind back the surface glass exposing the core, dry it out and re-glass - it's that easy.

2. Cost:

Timber cores are cheaper than Foam in most cases.

3. Resale:

A light, high tech cat returns a far better (often 2 - 3 times) re-sale than lower tech. Materials. Often saving 10k on materials initially, loses 200k on re-sale - a serious reality.

Our boats can be built using Balsa, Foam or Western Red Cedar. Combine strength, stiffness, lightness and cost, with ease of use - it just makes good sense




Schionning Designs 2011
Created By WebRaven ©

"
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Old 12-02-2011, 20:19   #44
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Balsa is cheaper than foam as a core one of the reasons it is used in home built vessels rather than foam. Certainly Grainger and Schonning offer both options.

Stallion recently built 3 racing monos out of infused foam and their experience with foam infusion as well as Duflex balsa has moved them to prefer foam over balsa although they will build in whatever the customer wants.
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Old 13-02-2011, 23:53   #45
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Balsa is cheaper than foam as a core one of the reasons it is used in home built vessels rather than foam. Certainly Grainger and Schonning offer both options.

Stallion recently built 3 racing monos out of infused foam and their experience with foam infusion as well as Duflex balsa has moved them to prefer foam over balsa although they will build in whatever the customer wants.
Yes, Downunder. The boys at Stallion, like Schionning are prepared to discuss the pros and cons of different materials and use what the customer wishes. They aren't locked into one material that is "the greatest thing since sliced bread".

Also interesting that Schionning, unlike some other designers and their brand promoters, at least admit that there is a slight possibility that ROT is possible in a balsa core (any brand). I'm not sure about their remedy however;

"Notice a damp spot remaining when drying out to anti-foul…simply grind back the surface glass exposing the core, dry it out and re-glass - it's that easy. "

If you don't happen to notice a damp spot in the hull because the anti-fouling job is a quick affair or you are paying someone else to do it, is that what Schionning call "extreme neglect".

There are many manufacturers of cruising catamarans, both production and custom that still insist on solid GRP below the waterline, but are happy to use cored composites above the waterline for it's weight saving properties. Buyers of cruising cats have to weigh up (intentional pun!) whether they really need ANY core below the waterline. Will the lighter boat go much faster with a cruising load? Is long term durability and resale value being compromised by using some of these core materials, especially below the waterline?
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