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Old 12-02-2016, 13:30   #31
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Re: Alu centerborder for family cruising

Just a personal note here, since I have been seriously looking into French aluminium lifting keel boats. As for the Ovnis, I can see one advantage over the competition. The interiors are done at they yard, as opposed to owner installed on many other of the now older boats. They seem to keep their resale value well, which is a good thing if you do not want to keep it for many years to come.

Basically though, to me the hype on Ovni is 80 % due to very good marketing. Professional website, including a forum for the owners, and of course they have been around a long time now, while cote tutors have come and gone.

For me none of the above justifies their almost refi cultus asking prices, even on older models, since ther are several other makes at least as good if not better...

But sure, if you feel comfortable with the price tag, and plan to sell again in a few years, go for it?

It also depends on why choosing a metal hull in the first place, for weight and performance a composite hull is by far the strongest per weight unit and no corrosion worries. Personally, I like alu for it's workboat qualities, ruggedness and simplicity. Present designs have strayed quite far from this concept, moving into the more 'yachty niche'. Those are opposite qualities to me, thus I like tthe older models better and of course some of those purpose built expedition boats.

To each his own of course
Do it today-tomorrow it could be too late!
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Old 12-02-2016, 15:27   #32
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Re: Alu centerborder for family cruising

I can only tell you you will love the Ovni especially if it is the older version with the single rudder. As you might now know Ovni has gone pretty well down hill with few new boats being built as of a few years ago anyway. Before we bought our Boreal 44 we thought about the Ovni and did not like the new design and were worried that they were building so few boats back in 2011. We love our French Aluminum centerboarder, she is the most sea kindly boat we have owned in the last 40 years, fast, strong and easy to to take care of. Don't let people who do not own an a French aluminum center boarder scare you off saying watch out for currosion . The French understand how to wire aluminum boats better than anyone else. The day we passed papers I took an American penny and put it in a damp place in the stern lazerette and it is still there and has not made a mark in the aluminum yet,( 3 years). On the Ovni you have a good system of checking for ground faults, press a button and you know what is happening, nothing bad. But we still check it daily.

Seeing we have a French Aluminum center boarder we spend a lot of time with Frenchmen and women that own Ovni's and they all love their boats.
Of course they would love to own a Boreal even more but that is a different story all together.

Best of luck in your search.
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Old 12-02-2016, 20:31   #33
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Re: Alu centerborder for family cruising

I'll try and explain as best I can about your thoughts on aluminum centerboard boats. We have owned our Boreal now for 3 years and sailed her about 10,000 miles.

Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
On the Ovni, & similar aluminum hulled centerboarders: I've always wondered how one both kept tabs on the status of the bottom paint, & that of the barrier coat, inside of the centerboard trunk. Ditto on much of the centerboard that's normally out of sight. Tucked up inside of the trunk.

Actually the barrier coat and the bottom paint holds up better inside the box and on the center board than on the hull. When we lift the boat out to put on the hard it is so easy to use the pressure washer to clean the moss and grass out of box and the centerboard that remains in box. Plenty of room not only to clean but to put new bottom paint on as well. We were worried also about this before we bought our boat.

And I ask because there must be a substantial bit of abrasion going on between the board & the trunk, especially when under sail. Particularly upwind.
This, even if one was to put some UHMW Polyethelyne strips/patches onto the sides of the board, so as to cut down on friction. And thus, subsequent coating wear.

No abrasion going up wind because the center board is pressed to the lea side of box. On our boat there are UHMW polyethelyne strips that are attached to the center board box and not the center board. These strip can be adjusted from inside the cabin by taking the top off the centerboard while in the water, we did it once after crossing the Atlantic, took about an hour. it was a new boat and I think I did the adjustment because I was curious what it would be like to do adjustment more than it needed it. We just had to careful not to adjust too tightly. I'd say about 1/4 of an inch tolerance on each side of center board was right.

But even with "Teflon Washers", as it were. I'm sure that there still has to be a fair amount of movement between the two; continually, 24/7.
Which strikes me as being very, very hard on the coatings on both the trunk & the board.

Like I say no ware on coatings because the board has pressure on side of the UHMW going up wind. No movement at all and board remains very quiet. Now down wind if for what ever reason you would ever leave board down there is some movement. I forgot to raise board once in large seas and we had some banging.

So what's the fix? As, if you wear off your coatings in an aluminum boat, you're sunk, literally.
No that is a miss conception. We ware off the bottom paint and a little of the barrier coat often. The wife and I are always trying to get into places no one else can go all the time like in the San Blass Islands. I bump coral often. Remember you do not use copper based bottom paint on an aluminum boat though some Frenchmen do. I bet I have 7 or 8 scrapes where there is no bottom paint. I just go dive on the bottom every once in a great while and scrub the grass off that grows where the scrapes are.
I end up with nice shinny scrapes and that is all after cleaning. When on the hard we touch up the barrier coat and repaint the bottom. I would love to use tin based bottom paint as it is sold in Panama but then I have to go to New Zealand and they sure don't like you having it on your boat there.

Hope this answers your questions.

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Old 19-02-2016, 09:44   #34
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Re: Alu centerborder for family cruising

Found this blog of an ovni owner,he also mentions that Alubat went under a while ago and moved to another location to restart their business.


Also he is doing some thoughts about dodgers,turns out that the scandinavian dealer for allures(he previously was the alubat dealer)can provide you with an HR style windscreen.Perhaps if you fit your Ovni with an extra arch you build a pilothouse,not as good as a real one but still...from canvas I mean.

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Old 22-02-2016, 01:48   #35
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Re: Alu centerborder for family cruising

For All Ships. Here is some OVNI blogs for giving inspiration:

Blog chamade 2015 » Bienvenue à bord de Chamade Ovni 365
Sailing Courses and Skippered Charter with Charlie Sailing, Lymington. Ovni 385 Ovni 385
Le voyage d'Entre-Côtes Ovni 365

Thanks for any feedback. First hand experiences on family cruising on Ovnis still be appreciated.
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cruising, family

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