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Old 28-04-2016, 11:41   #1
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South African vs European Cruising Cats

Hi All,

We are a family of 3 looking for a long term liveaboard cruising cat 42'-50' for ourselves and 2-3 friends.

Being in South Africa we are fortunate to have many builders on our doorstep making seemingly world class boats.
  • Leopard
  • Maverick
  • Knysna
  • St Francis
  • Voyager
  • Nexus/Balance
  • etc etc

I don't however have the benefit of having seen many of the new cats out of europe. (which seemed to be priced similarly to our local offering)
  • Saba 50
  • Helio 44
  • Open 40
  • Bali Loft
  • Outremer 50

So my questions are:
  1. Are the premium SA cats on par with the top european brands?
  2. Are the pretty Euro cats seaworthy for long term offshore cruising?
  3. What length of vessel should I ideally be looking at for 6 persons.
  4. If I opt for a Euro boat, is it a major hassle buying a boat remotely?

Thanks in advance for any help!
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Old 28-04-2016, 13:34   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Boat: Fountaine Pajot Saba 50 catamaran
Posts: 37
Re: South African vs European Cruising Cats

Hi. Email me on nic@wwh.co.za and we can set up a chat. I am also in SA and we have just bought a Saba 50 after lots of research. Perhaps I can share the reasons for our choice with you via a phone call. Cheers Nic
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Old 01-05-2016, 04:20   #3
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Location: Riga, Latvia
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Re: South African vs European Cruising Cats

Hi, Barthlomews and nice to see one more catamarans fun!

Coming back to Your qtns, IMHO:

1) Are the premium SA cats on par with the top european brands?

In general the answer is "yes". The only question is to chose/find right
boat matching Your sailing ideas as much as possible.

2)Are the pretty Euro cats seaworthy for long term offshore cruising?

Not all and every of them. Keeping in mind particularly OFFSHORE sailing
and permanently year by year lowering building quality by all most known
production boat builders.

3) What length of vessel should I ideally be looking at for 6 persons.

Depending of how long is Your long term.

For 3 of You 40-ft might be fine, if Your friends will share all time with You,
then bigger one seems to be better. We are always 5-6 onboard and
from, time to time our 50-ft appears to be small!

4)If I opt for a Euro boat, is it a major hassle buying a boat remotely?

Just "buying" is simple.

++
++

Having sailed various cats during last 9 years I personally see a "long term live-aboard offshore capable cat" as a purpose designed boat built in quality materials by reliable yard. Regular visiting to see how the boat is built is essential as well.

Good luck!
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