I am one of those guilty "lurkers" finally coming out of the dark.
So here is my plan and thoughts...
I will be retiring in about 7 years, and will start building a catamaran
next year with plans to complete it about 1 year before retirement
so I can get all the kinks worked out before starting to cruise
. I am pretty well settled on the Wharram
Tiki 38, as it is definitely home-buildable, open-ocean worthy, and can be completely built, then moved to the water
in 3 pieces for final assembly just before launch. I have no concerns about my ability to build or sail this vessel, and will be cruising the US South-east coast, El Caribe, and the South Pacific
, doing alot of diving
, so the Tiki 38 really should be just about perfect.
However, I would like a little better tacking, turning, and windward ability than they seem to have. So my thoughts are to extend the hulls by 2 feet, the beam by 1 foot (thus maintaing the current
length/beam ration), leave off the fixed LAR keels and instead build kick-back centerboards into each hull
, and increase the sail area by about 15%.
Using the centerboard
in the windward hull
only should eliminate the problem that schooner and ketch
rigs tend to have when coupled with a centerboard
in that they are difficult to counter the weather helm
due to the widely dispersed sail area "pivoting" the boat around the centerboard (thus the reason for them having full keels). By using only the windward board, the sail effort will be "pulling" the board through the water
rather than "pushing" it, which is inherently much more stable.
I will also be building with a lot of end-grain balsa core
and foam core
in order to minimize weight and increase performance.
So, what do those of you with some experience with either the Wharram
Tiki's or ketch/schooner rigs think of my ideas for increasing the performance? I know that James Wharram is not a big fan of people tweaking his designs, and generally will not respond or give his blessing to any changes. I can't blame him for that, as today's litigenous society is always looking for a scapegoat if something doesn't quite work out.
Any thoughts, comments, or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.