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Old 15-02-2014, 13:32   #1
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Isara catamarans

Does anyone know much about Isara catamarans? Quality, handling, maintenance, etc? There's one at the boat show">Miami boat show.
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Old 12-03-2014, 06:03   #2
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Re: Isara catamarans

Hi!

I think that you need to judge for yourself, but I personally feel that the Isara is an incredible catamaran, expensive, compared to a Lagoon or Fountaine Pajot but just about everything comes as standard and when you ad it up I don't think the price difference is that great.
I did not like the teak decks myself, but you do not have to have them.

After not visiting the forum for a while I almost felt defensive about the Isara after reading some of the comments. I went on the cat two or three times at the Miami show after seeing it in Annapolis, I just fell in love!

Maybe I was looking through rose tinted glasses, but I found the boat hard to fault. It was hard to believe some of the comments on the forum regarding the quality, or the fact that it did not have the mast at the show. At least the Guy's from Isara got it there!
No real test reports around so not much is known about performance, but they seem to be selling a few boats now. The Architect is probably the best Guy in the business by all accounts. Just the fact that they managed to get two out of the factory goes a long way and both cats looked pretty good to me.
I can't afford one yet, but I am working on it, to me nothing comes close.
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Old 12-03-2014, 07:04   #3
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Re: Isara catamarans

I didn't get a chance to attend the show and, as a result, I can't speak to the quality of the build. However, there are a few things that bother me about the design:

1. I agree with those who are critical of the curved aft deck - apart from aesthetics ( I personally think it is incongruous to the design of a boat that is otherwise extremely angular in appearance), it certainly will reduce protection for the dinghy. Worse still, it will put that weight much further aft, which would tend to increase the tendancy for hobby-horsing. Carry it on deck? I guess, but what sort of block and tackle/swivelling arms will be required to lift it and swing it over the deck? In any event, having to store the dinghy on the aft deck largely defeats the purpose of the deck, does it not?

2. The current trend in design is to have relatively large knuckles topside that increase interior volume above the waterline, while maintaining relatively narrower hulls at the waterline in order to assist in performance. The knuckles on this design are rather small, suggesting to me that BWL will be quite high. This will likely hamper performance. On the other hand, it does provide for increased floor area - something which the interior design of this boat takes advantage of.

3. While large fixed ports in the side of the hulls is a current design trend, the ones on this boat are rather extreme. Does anyone really believe that they will be as strong as the hulls if subjected to a large wave from the beam? Put another way, even when docking would you be prepared to hang fenders against them? Note that there is precious little space between some of these portlights - has anyone thought what might happend if you are docking in bad conditioins and one of the fenders is pushed back from the hull against a window?

4. From what I can see, the headliner is largely glued-on, foam-backed vinyl. While this was much more common in the early days of catamarans, experience has shown that within about 10 years the glue/foam will fail, leading to an unsightly, sagging mess. This is to say nothing of the fact that it makes access to any leaking hardware on deck extremely difficult.

5. The interior was clearly designed to emulate a modern, upscale condo more than a boat. Yes, there is a trend in the industry towards sharp-edged joinerwork - and it makes perfect sense from a manufacturers perspective as it is looks 'more-modern' and is cheaper to produce. However, make no mistake, it is also dangerous in a seaway. The high-lo table in the salon is one good example. Look at how small the passageway is around it - perhaps a foot and a half? In a moving boat, how many people will smash their shins against the sharp edge of that table? Of course, just as one can compensate for the dinghy storage issues by setting up an elaborate lifting system in order to store the dinghy on deck, when in use in all but calm seas, the crew of this boat could compensate by wearing hockey shin pads.

Overall, I see a boat that was designed to be the darling of the boat-shows. However, aspects of design that look great dockside - a curved aft 'porch'; large fixed portlights on the sides of the hull that substantially brighten up the interior; modern, sharp-edged furnishings; sofas and chairs rather than traditional settees (wasted storage space be damned!); soft, padded headliners rather than hard fiberglass; increased BWL to increase the area of the cabin sole - all have a cost in the real world of sailing.

Brad
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Old 12-03-2014, 07:35   #4
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Re: Isara catamarans

Good thoughts on design! Mono hulls are starting to go the same direction with sharper corners to get the modern look which is cheaper.
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Old 12-03-2014, 17:33   #5
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Re: Isara catamarans

Thanks for all the input. I saw it at Miami also.
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