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Old 27-11-2017, 07:16   #1
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Fountaine Pajot Training

We're scheduled to take delivery of our Saba in La Rochelle 9/2018 and are considering the factory training (OPT0559011 - Coaching 2600)

The description reads,

"Coaching - After receiving your boat, experiment 5 days aboard your boat in La Rochelle with a professional skipper. He will explain the basics of all navigation (navigation rules, weather knowledge, safety equipment,) as well as maneuvers to sail and motor without forgetting the operation of equipments installed on board of your boat."

I'm a relatively inexperienced sailor (ASA 101-114 and a couple weeks of Helia and L450S charters in the Abacos and BVIs.) I'm striving to gain all the training I can. I'll include those in my family that sail with me and likely our delivery/charter crew to thoroughly learn the boat and systems (our crew will be live-aboard running charters in the BVis.)

Has anyone gone through the FP training and if so; what were your thoughts? Was the captain factory trained and very knowledgeable on FP systems and Mx or simply outside contracted.

Thanks much!
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Old 28-11-2017, 09:13   #2
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

We were at a very similar experience level as yourself. The FP captain (who was an instructor from a very large local sailing school was amazing) He knew the boat very well and more importantly the local La Rochelle waters. 13 foot tides were an all new navigational challenge for us and he taught us much about the local ports and marinas. We would recommend that you visit a local chandler and pick up a local cruising guide in english. We also purchased Garmin charts ahead of time for our iPad. They were the most cost effective solution for something we would only be using for a couple weeks.

If you have a US wired boat you will need to charge your batteries daily.

We were also able to meet with the FP customer liaison in the marina daily to discuss minor fixes and get answers to questions about many of the boat's systems. Most of the very technical and specific boat questions were answered there.

Worth it 100%.
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Old 28-11-2017, 09:47   #3
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Thanks much Terbonium!

That's the exact feedback I was hoping for. I think we'll go ahead with the FP training.
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Old 28-11-2017, 11:23   #4
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Oh, congrats on your new boat. September will be chilly, at least check the weather. We sailed in July/August and greatly under packed for the weather. I guess living in Miami has skewed our understanding of what a season is.

I failed to say we spent 2 weeks on the boat. 5 days with the instructor and then another 9 days on our own. We also had some additional work done by Uchimata before leaving. We had the boat professionally sailed to Florida. The experience of sailing in France and into the old LaRochelle harbour was priceless for us.
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Old 29-11-2017, 05:29   #5
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terbonium View Post
Oh, congrats on your new boat. September will be chilly, at least check the weather. We sailed in July/August and greatly under packed for the weather. I guess living in Miami has skewed our understanding of what a season is.

I failed to say we spent 2 weeks on the boat. 5 days with the instructor and then another 9 days on our own. We also had some additional work done by Uchimata before leaving. We had the boat professionally sailed to Florida. The experience of sailing in France and into the old LaRochelle harbour was priceless for us.
For those of us still in contemplation mode (!) can you elaborate on the additional work you had done? Where did to tie up or moor for those 9 days, and did you hire the delivery crew? Im trying to sort out the entire process.

Thanks!
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Old 29-11-2017, 05:50   #6
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terbonium View Post
Oh, congrats on your new boat. September will be chilly, at least check the weather. We sailed in July/August and greatly under packed for the weather. I guess living in Miami has skewed our understanding of what a season is.

I failed to say we spent 2 weeks on the boat. 5 days with the instructor and then another 9 days on our own. We also had some additional work done by Uchimata before leaving. We had the boat professionally sailed to Florida. The experience of sailing in France and into the old LaRochelle harbour was priceless for us.
Thanks Terbonium - Compliments of being life-long residents of Michigan; I'm confident we'll have the clothing

I'm guessing our timeline will be similar, as we're also planning on having some outfitting done in La Rochelle (Parasail, 3B FLexofolds, Iridium, Seagull...) How was your experience with Uchimata? We've got lots of additional work planned, but will likely bring the boat back to Florida.

At present our plan is La Rochelle>Cascais>Tenerife>St. Martin for Christmas. Then Ft. Lauderdale for the remaining outfitting finally returning to BVIs ~Feb.
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Old 29-11-2017, 07:21   #7
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Uchimata did great work. Better than anything we've seen in the US for reasonable $$. Most valuable though is how well they know the FP boats. They installed the grille in less than an hour. They quickly removed all the correct access panels and had the gas line run without issue. If there is anything that you are debating having done, I would really consider having it done there. The only negative we saw was the higher cost of goods.

Sailing yourself? Our delivery crew took just over 100 days because of all the hurricane activity this year. They waited nearly a month in Tenerife.
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Old 29-11-2017, 07:26   #8
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Perhaps you could comment on the use of the helm on the FP compared to the L450S. It would probably be a worthwhile thread on its own.
I really like the Lagoon but find the new FP helms seem to be a bit more usable?

Thanks
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Old 29-11-2017, 07:42   #9
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

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Originally Posted by Steve_C View Post
Perhaps you could comment on the use of the helm on the FP compared to the L450S. It would probably be a worthwhile thread on its own.
I really like the Lagoon but find the new FP helms seem to be a bit more usable?

Thanks
I think I mentioned this in my build thread, but we were surprised at our choice in helm layout. We initially thought we would prefer the 450S firewall design with everything in reach. After spending more than a week on both, we found we strongly preferred the FP split helm design.
  • More overall room (especially when 2 more more at the helm)
  • Both steering and winch stations had better ergonomics (especially for those shorter in stature.)
  • FP Helm seat much larger and more comfortable
  • Raised flooring much better for those with shorter legs
  • Better visibility - Easy to step outside of throttles when maneuvering and backing
I prefer the FP layout even when single handling, just pop on the autopilot to tend the winches. I do however wish FP installed a wheel lock.
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Old 29-11-2017, 07:51   #10
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terbonium View Post
Uchimata did great work. Better than anything we've seen in the US for reasonable $$. Most valuable though is how well they know the FP boats. They installed the grille in less than an hour. They quickly removed all the correct access panels and had the gas line run without issue. If there is anything that you are debating having done, I would really consider having it done there. The only negative we saw was the higher cost of goods.

Sailing yourself? Our delivery crew took just over 100 days because of all the hurricane activity this year. They waited nearly a month in Tenerife.
Interesting - We were going to go with the factory BBQ to get the plumbing done in factory, then replace with a Sovereign once it died. I'll look into Uchimata installing the Sovereign directly. Did they also do the propane conversion?

I don't yet have the skills for the TransAt so we'll have our crew aboard (I want them there for the FP training anyway.) Wow, 100 days - My plan is to have the family aboard till Tenerife with me crewing/learning all the way to St. Martin, but I might have to bail if we encounter a similar delay.
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Old 29-11-2017, 08:01   #11
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

You might find the route and travel time interesting then: http://longshadow.golownia.com

Uchimata ran the gas line and installed the grille (no prior FP plumbing). Butane burners are the same as propane, so no changes there. The propane conversion was done in Florida by MultiTech. They installed the proper fitting in the gas locker as well as added a solenoid shutoff. At the time of our build FP was using the Eno grilles. Junk if you ask me, especially compared to the Sovereign.

Uchimata also plumbed the washer/dryer. (something we had thought should be done by FP during the build, but the work they did looks like it was done at the time of the build. Again, I think this is where their knowledge of the boat is a big advantage. They had all the plumbing run very quickly.

edit: oops, it was 76 days.. felt like 100
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Old 03-12-2017, 12:34   #12
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Re: Fountaine Pajot Training

We used Alain Girard in La Rochelle for our Lucia - as did the 3 other families in La Rochelle also receiving their new FP boats. You can find Alain on FB or ags.sailing@gmail.com
Id recommend Alain - he knows the FP boats very well - and really helped in team cooperation and communication.
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