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Old 07-08-2020, 14:29   #16
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Boat: Prout Snowgoose 35
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Re: Can Catamarans handle the cold?

Originally Posted by Tupaia View Post
Norway although cold is dry. The UK/Germany/Ireland is less cold but damp. The killer on boats in higher latitudes (excluding ice) is condensation.

Good heating (eg Eberspatcher), good insulation and good ventilation are key factors.

A foam sandwich boat will heat up quickly and retain the heat. A solid GRP or metal boat will not.

Special considerations for damp environments is NOT to have hatches over top of berths. Great for the tropics but will drip and drip until all the berths are WET.

You need dry heating (Eberspatcher hydronic) and dry cooking (Wallas diesel). Gas produces condensation.

Closable through flow vents are essential.

This stuff does not come as standard on off the shelf boats.

Sailing out of season is cold and miserable (sailing in season is not always fun Ireland isn't called the emerald isle for no reason) most boats in N.Europe are used six months and then laid up winterised ashore.
What you say is true, but it doesn't make much sense to heat the boat and have high airflow. Although this is necessary to remove moisture (hot air being able to carry more than cold air), it is wasteful. It's likely to be more efficient to run a dehumidifier. This will remove a lot of moisture, and as a waste product generate some heat.

The hydronic heating (doesn't have to be Eberspatcher, could be Webasto of others) is a good call, and so too is not using gas for cooking. Electric would probably be better than diesel though.
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Old 07-08-2020, 19:22   #17
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Re: Can Catamarans handle the cold?

While cats are fantastic liveaboards there's no way they compete with monos in ice. Yes in a skim of thin ice anything works but if you are pushing through pack ice forget it. It's tough enough pushing and picking your way through real Arctic ice in an ice class vessel let alone one that gathers it between the hulls and then can't move forward.

There was an experimental vessel built here in Newfoundland and Labrador a couple decades ago using a bundle of government money. It was to be the rise of the cat in the commercial fishery here. Of course it was sold for a bargain to Memorial University as a research vessel shortly thereafter when it was found to be useless in ice and unable to carry the required gear. I think it is somewhere in central America now. It was a failed experiment that truly displayed the faults of a catamaran in ice. The pictures posted in earlier messages are not at all like actual pack ice and are likely planned photo shoots and very unrealistic. We were tasked with the delivery of a small ferry in the spring and had to wait for the wind to loosen the ice. It took about six weeks to move including three days just getting clear of the wharf. Telling me a fibreglass pleasure boat can do the same or better tells me that those implying it have no experience in such matters.
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Old 08-08-2020, 12:02   #18
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Re: Can Catamarans handle the cold?

We have spent lots of time on our Manta catamaran in cold areas: Newfoundland, Labrador, Iceland, Faeroes, Scotland, Ireland as well as the Patagonia regions of Argentina, Chile, Beagle Channel, round Cape Horn, Falkland Islands, etc. Had ice on the decks and skim ice on the water.
We had two Espar heaters, one for each hull engine room, both vented into the main salon, one outlet at the galley foot for the cook and one under the dinette table.
Also had a vent in each head next to the toilet and shower. We covered the salon windows and all overhead hatches with plastic film and double sided tape when in cold areas and that made a great deal of difference to condensation.
Some flexible foam liner at the hull sides, like thos 3/8" thick camping sleeping pads also cut the condensation at the side of the bunk.

Every boat is different, just work out the details to make life comfortable.
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