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Old 17-03-2007, 09:48   #31
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Also, most Americans don't even know where South Africa is Present company excluded, of course!! No offence meant!
True stuff. I've had the good fortune the visit South Africa several times over the years but I'll be dipped if I can remember how I got there.
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Old 18-03-2007, 04:35   #32
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Hello Etienne,

I think I would go for the new Dean 441. The perfect finish inside and out puts it in a league of it's own. http://deancatamarans.com

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Old 19-03-2007, 01:25   #33
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Hi Scarab,

Years ago when this idea started, in fact, I had only two boats in mind: St. Francis 44 and the Dean 44. I was in fact totally smitten with the Dean, but with that I mean the 'old' Dean design with the massive hull-shapes. Though they are no doubt excellent boats, I simply didn't like the interiors of either, and the look of the 'new' Dean. I particularly dislike Targa bars on Porsches and even less on Catamarans!

Thanks all the input...
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Old 19-03-2007, 05:10   #34
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See what I mean? It's not just Dean, even St. Francis and some others have this Targa-bar thingy which I don't like. I think it ruins the design of anything! I can also imagine that it will interfere with my fishing activities.




Actually, it even looks a bit like this:


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Old 20-03-2007, 12:07   #35
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one good thing about having a nice aft arch is that it makes a wonderful platform for mounting solar panels. I've got enough solar back there that with a refrigerator and a freezer and laptop I still have juice to spare
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Old 20-03-2007, 12:42   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Etienne
See what I mean? It's not just Dean, even St. Francis and some others have this Targa-bar thingy which I don't like. I think it ruins the design of anything! I can also imagine that it will interfere with my fishing activities.




Actually, it even looks a bit like this:


You couldn't say the targa things ruined the look of those last 2 cars though. They would be just as awful without them. I think the Porsche looks fine.

There are probably better reasons to base a decision on than just the targa arch.
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Old 20-03-2007, 19:53   #37
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I agree...
I'm just having a bit of fun...
True it is an excellent platform for solarpanels!

'44 Crusingcat...These forums unfortunately breeds the Anorak in us - hence we sometimes pick on the seemingly insignificant.
After all the 'important' stuff has been considered, weighed up, thought about, discussed, we get to stuff like how 'sexy' the boat looks... And colour schemes of upholstery... And the size of table under the bimini...
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Old 20-03-2007, 21:40   #38
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I guess we all have our own priorities. If you want a boat that will be everything you can ask for, I think your best bet would be to come to Aus, and talk to some of the designers here, and have something custom or semi-custom built. You would be surprised how cost effective it could be compared to a production boat, although it might take longer.

You would also end up with a higher quality product, since the vast majority of production builders do look to cut costs somewhere on the boat.
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Old 06-05-2007, 09:08   #39
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I for mine would have bought a resent model Bahia 46 Maestro! That's my dream boat, in my eyes the sexyest looks of any cat around and fast as well! I saw a listing over some charter boat races in the Carribean a couple of years ago and the Bahia had the three first places and then came som Athena 38's also from FP.

I'm probably biased in my opinoins having owned an Athena and now a Belize 43. Contrary to what some people claim that the FP's are not sturdy enough for ocean crossings they definitely are! Half of them are delivered on their own keels all over the world. I haven't heard of any main problems with one yet, however that would go for newer cats in general! The best and safest option if you want to stay on water!

I sail in Scandinavia and the weather and wind conditions here can be rough but the FP's haven't let me down yet. And I love the bridgedeck clearance that allow me to go out and sail in 40 knots of wind without BD slamming! I'm probably crazy for doing that, but my father in law clams he feels alive when the sprey is all over and he can feel the boat accellerate in a gust even when the boat is already doing 12 knots!

There are other brands out there that are much more expensive and have fantastic interiors. but in the "value for money" ratio I would go for a Bahia 46. There have been, over the last year, some really nice ones for sale in the US waters that are privately owned, very well equipped and therefore doesn't suffer from the wear and tear of the ex charter cats.

Have a successful hunt for your next cat

Happy lead free sailin
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Old 06-05-2007, 14:43   #40
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oceancat 46

We saw a very interesting cat made around the Charleston area called the Oceancat 46 this year in the Exumas. We talked to the owner and he said you could probably negotiate a very good price on one right now.
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Old 07-05-2007, 07:37   #41
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Catamaran company in Annapolis had the Lagoon 440 and FP 46 for display. Beautiful addition to the festival, though I think the brokers were a little overwhelmed by the sheer number of people. I believe they will be around for a little bit also for viewing, if you want more info send me an email.
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Old 07-05-2007, 12:07   #42
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St Francis 44

This ONLY applies to the 44, not the 50, which is a luxury boat with a new factory and new tooling.

Pluses:

Great performance: expect 12 knots in trade winds; expect teens with gennaker in trades. Mid engine placement (not many do this) mean that they can make the hull form far more streamlined than other rear engine catamarans. Our delivery captains which delivered solely catamarans for 10 years said that our boat was the best sailing catamaran they'd ever sailed. They made it from Ft Lauderdale to Annapolis in 4 days averaging 260 mile days in light to moderate winds.
This also means when I put down a chart and draw a circle and say "where can I go in a 10 hour daylight passage" on a cat going 10 knots instead of the typical 8 knots, it means I'm looking at a circle that is 50% larger.

Great electrical cabling and management. Electrical conduits connect everything, battery bank very accessible and centrally located where it can't get wet in the driest and highest part of the boat.

Sturdy construction and expensive good materials in hulls and deck, these boats are probably one of the most equally spread out boats across the world in terms of sailing for their limited numbers. They go everywhere.

One of the most spacious settee areas. It has a wide wrap-around desk and settee table up on the bridge deck mean that you have lots of space for company and kids. People who've been on our boat have said that this space looks the most liveable of any boat they've seen after going to the boat show.

Galley with 10 feet of counter space and plenty of storage (perhaps 4 times more storage and space than galley up models).

Forward heads and cabins are quite well laid out. Small bathtub, shower with plenty of room.

8 feet of forward locker space with access hatch starting at half way up the bulkhead giving lots of buoyancy reserve.

Great aft arch for solar and dingy

Lots of storage in cabins, two or three times the amount we've seen on many other cats.

Nice simple anchoring system with very good windlass.

Flat decks and wide decks. This is one of the few cats which has nice flat roof and decks and doesn't have excessive windage.

Toe Rails

Great visibility in settee area.

Great protected cockpit with swim platform aft, my two year old can play in the cockpit (always with one of us present) and from the edges of the cockpit there is no way for him to fall overboard. Cockpit doesn't have the "door" opening aft which would be an open invitation to broaching seas. Almost impossible to get pooped. Extra large scuppers to drain cockpit.

Yanmar diesels, arguably the best. They've been bullet proof despite drastic neglect by the previous owner.

Simple bump at the mast halyards and reefing lines, easy to raise the main without using a winch (though it has two mast mounted winches). Some people like all lines led aft to the cockpit. I see the theoretical value, but I've had boats with it both ways and even when lines were led to the cockpit I would often have to go to the mast when the halyards started to stiffen to bump at the mast anyway. With such large and wide decks I find it completely fine. One less thing to go wrong.

Water tanks in keels. Had water tanks above in settee before and water leaks, overflows would go everywhere. This tank also serves as a water tight compartment should you hit a reef and loose your keel and it serves as low reserve bouyancy when the tank isn't full.

Cons:

Births aft are more suited for kids than adults, which make them a fine family cruiser, but not a good charter

Veneers and interior walls are cheaper than European. Spray white enamel vs. cherry veneer. Plastic fixtures rather than more expensive stainless. Formica instead of Corian counter tops. Light, indestructible and easy to care for but not wowing. Cockpit bimini is flat instead of arched so collects water and is fairly unstable; we replace ours with a nice arched fixed bimini.

Load carrying: Her fine lines make her an excellent sailing boat, but not a good load carrier. With all cats you have to make this trade off and the St Francis is a greyhound not a pack mule. If you want an 11 ft AB aluminum bottom RIB with 2 stroke outboard, no problem. If you want a 500 lb center console rib that you could carry on a prout 45, you will have a problem. She can obviously carry enough for circumnavigations because they've done it in every sea.

the MKII increased the clearance underneath, previous models had less clearance.

It is a four cabin, four head model typically, which is unnecessary for a owner oriented boat. Some have made an aft cabin into a pantry which offers amazing storage, really well done. We plan to do the same with our boat as well. Many families with 3 kids go cruising and everyone has their one cabin and own head and get the boat expressly for this feature.

I wish the water tanks had inspection ports into all of their baffled compartments. I've never seen that in a boat, but it's still something I wish for!

Need to make countertops above engines able to pivot up or removeable as a good and easy upgrade. Once done you have great engine access.

Need to keep the main sheet traveller system well maintained or else it will be prone to jam and become difficult to use.

Engines amidship create a bulge which some don't like

Head clearance is over 6 ft everywhere except for the aft cabins, where it is about 5 11", again, perfect for kids and done to reduce the windage and weight.

For the price, you can't find a better sailing, sturdier boat with as well planned use of space and storage.

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Old 11-05-2007, 19:00   #43
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Knysna 440

Hey Schoonerdog appreciate the insight. What are your thoughts on the Knysna 440? Did they carryon the St Francis tradition, wreck it or improve on it?

thanks
j
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Old 11-05-2007, 22:18   #44
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That is a real toughie to answer without seeing one in person. The boat wasn't designed to carry weight aft, she has wonderfully slender waterline going aft and keeps her weight in the middle through middle engines. I think the knysna put them in the aft birth, which makes me wonder now how it sails. Boats with aft engines can sail fine, it's just that this one wasn't originally designed that way. They also expanded the aft stateroom which would itself add a bit of weight aft again. There's a good reference in a thread on the snowgoose which shows C Kanter talking about waterline and hull performance. I'd ask them if they put the engines under the aft births, how they handle increased weight aft through the hull design. The foredeck was raised to give more room to the births, more weight, but increased comfort, but less visibility in the settee area....

Some good things might very well be the extension of the boom aft for additional sail area, the addition of a screacher, again for additional sail area.

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Originally Posted by Jeff
Hey Schoonerdog appreciate the insight. What are your thoughts on the Knysna 440? Did they carryon the St Francis tradition, wreck it or improve on it?

thanks
j
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Old 21-09-2007, 14:03   #45
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Hey!
We bought and are waiting for our LEOPARD 46.
BETTER YET WE SAILED THE 46 AWAY IN FLA. LAST FEB.07
2 years of shopping trying and traveling the world to choose the ultimate cat.Don t ask a lagoon owner for positive comments ... They are to busy keeping track on their very SLOW luxury beast. OK.....Sorry!!!!!
All i can say is we think we have done our homework..The leopard 46 is a winner and we strongly believe it will set the new benchmark in the industry for luxurious but still good perfomance cat.
Price wise i don t think they are cheaper priced than lagoon 44 once you properly equipe them and ho.... hury up the falling us dollar and the strenghtening of the euro will set new price tags on the new cats both french and south african .
Robert D
P.S. no offense to all the frenchmen as i am one myself. Ha!Ha!
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