This is a great idea for a cruising vacation
. It is less so for learning
to sail; as it is best to learn on the smallest mono-hull possible.
By their nature; most catamarans are larger with multiple (and more complicated) systems to be concerned with. For example; anchoring
without a windlass
allows the wannabe sailor to actually feel the effect of wind
; waves; and current
. Consequently the student learns the "why" behind the action and can better apply the knowledge to other situations. It is quite complicated to anchor
and weigh the anchor
without a windlass
This is vastly different from just pushing a button and hoping that the boat stays put. Remember; it is not a question of if a windlass will fail. It is a question of when. The basics of all skills are essential.
Another example of a necessary skill is the MOB
procedure. To be best prepared; it is necessary that the person left aboard be able to effect the recovery single-handed. After all; many folks sail as a couple.
Too often catamarans are poorly setup for this procedure. The winches may not be in close proximity to the helm
. The equipment
may be difficult to reach. It may be difficult to see over the deck
to the MOB
. And; catamarans just don't respond to minor sailing changes with the same swiftness as a mono-hull.
If a person chooses to sail on a catamaran
; they must allow for these deficiencies and know how to handle them. But it is much better to learn the basic skill with as few complications as possible. Then the skill level can be enhanced to be better able to effect a rescue
on a larger vessel.
It is worth noting the ASA developed a training vessel (Beneteau 22: ASA sail training boat) specifically for ASA 101. It is basic and not complicated by systems that have nothing to do with sailing.
To this simple country boy; it is far better to learn the skills of ASA 101; 103; and 104 on a mono-hull. If you've really learned the skills; you'll be able to readily transfer that knowledge to a catamaran.
I have never heard of a charter company that requires ASA 114 to charter a catamaran. Sure; it's good knowledge and should not be dismissed. But if you really know the how's and why's; you can figure it out yourself.