Originally Posted by JayErabu
I have found an inexpensive Jim Brown trimaran
about 40ft wondering how that’s would stack up against a cat as far as living space goes
I would not suggest investing your time and $ in a polyester resin & plywood Searunner
(or other polyester&ply multihull). If built with epoxy
& ply, certainly worth a look. Jim Brown will convince you to love a Searunner
, just read his book "the Case for the Cruising trimaran" ..it is a fun read. The ones that were well built AND maintained over the years are still great cruising or liveaboard
boats, and have plenty of space. Not everyone likes the 2 cabin
layout, but most can appreciate the huge center cockpit
Some general advice
... as it's easy to get in over your head
on these projects. 40ft of boat
is a lot of $ and time, no matter what. A 40ft multihull
has a huge amount of surface area, and a ton of hardware
(every piece of hardware
, bolt, etc in the deck
is an opportunity for water
intrusion/rot). It will take 2-10 times as much time, and 2-10 times as much money
as your initial estimate. If you find a soft spot or damage, again, the actual area you need to cut out & repair/replace will be 2-10 times as large as your initial impression. This assuming you are relatively experienced to start out.
In order to succeed with one of these "cheap" projects on a minimal budget
, in the 5k price
range you mention, you need to be truly hard working, resourceful at finding 2nd hand materials & gear
, with many good friends willing to work
long hours for free, and have a boat yard/place to work
on/store the boat for free or cheap
. In the end, in most of these cases, even if your time is worth nothing, you would be better off working and saving up money
and buying a boat
for more $ that already has most of what you want.
As for the hurricane
damaged cats, it's my impression the reasonably good ones were snapped up long ago... many for much more than they were worth. It's likely you will see some "failed dreams" come back on the market, from those who bought them, but had no idea about the realities of rebuilding a boat in that part of the world. But the best deals in those situations are found on the ground, by walking around the boat yards and getting lucky, not necessarily posted on the internet
As is often repeated, an experienced marine surveyor
(familiar with the construction method of the boat in question AND multihulls)...although it initially seems expensive & silly for a cheap
boat, is almost always worth it.
The tri vs cat thing has been discussed plenty. The greater payload & typically higher resale value of a comparable cat will sway most people in that direction. That doesn't mean tri's are not good boats with enough space to live aboard
, but even though they have lots of volume, you MUST keep the tri light. Think backpacker/minimalist mentality.
Cross or Horstman trimarans could be also worth a look if you want lots of living space, and you're not as concerned with sailing performance.