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Home » Sailnet Boat Reviews » F - Boats starting with 'F' » Fast

Previous Product 
Fast 345
Reviews Views Date of last review
6 7822 Fri December 14, 2012
spacer
Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers None indicated 8.3












Description: Fast 345
Keywords: Fast 345
 


Author
hamiam
Senior Member

Registered: December 2000
Posts: 654
Review Date: Thu September 28, 2000 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Racer/Cruiser designed by Ron Holland and built by Fast Yachts of Brazil with molds and technical help from Camper Nicholson of the UK. (She is basically a Nicholson 345.)

Sailing: Built to the 3/4 ton IMS rule, the boat is quite quick with 100% jib and main alone. She is somewhat quick to enter a moderate heal and sails quite well once she gets there. Having experienced both the light winds of the Chesapeake and the more demand conditions of New England, I am quite happy with her performance across a wide range of conditions. Rig is mast head with double spreaders. Standing rigging is all solid stainless steel rod. I have added lazy jacks and a Profurl system for ease of sail handling. All lines are led back to the cockpit. All winches are self-tailing. Steering is by wheel. Aux. power via a VW 48hp diesel engine. She goes 7+ knots under power! Accommodations: 3 opening hatches. V-berth with holding tank and storage under. Sliding doors seperate head from v-berth and main cabin. Head and shower (drains in floor into bilge) to port and sink to starboard. Main cabin has two settees and a table that drops down from the bulkhead. Ample storage in seat backs and on outboard shelving units. Forward facing nav station with desk to port and galley opposite with propane range/oven, additional storage, and a moderate sized ice box. Engine access is excellent on 3 sides. Rear cabin with hanging lockers and small seat. Double birth sleeps two. 1 opening port in after cabin. Overall: An excellent boat and an excellent value.
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Faster

Just another Moderator

Registered: September 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
Posts: 14957
Review Date: Tue September 13, 2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Easy handling , well-built pretty boat, good storage & accom.
Cons: Std frac rig slightly underpowered, cockpit seating limited

This Ron Holland designed boat, originally produced in Britain as the Nicholson 345, is proving to be a delight for shorthanded sailing.
We have a standard (at best a 3/4)fractional rig (single swept spreaders) keeping headsails and spinnakers very manageable under all conditions. The main is large and powerful,and though she gives up a bit to other similar-sized boats in the lightest stuff, she likes a moderate breeze and steps out nicely at 6.2 - 6.3 knots to windward at the upper end of the #1 .
Power is a Brazilian version of the Pathfinder diesel (marinized VW Rabbit engine) Smooth 4 cyl operation and enough power (48hp!)to motor at 7.4 knots if necessary, and running at a moderate fuel conserving 1400 rpm still does 6.6. Easy parts availability at non-marine prices is a plus. Access is very good on 3 sides.
On deck the systems are good, lines led aft, selftailing winches etc. Passage forward is quite acceptable with wide side decks and plenty of handholds. The cockpit, while long, suffers some in terms of seating from the extensive bridge deck but with just two crew most of the time it is not a problem. The transom compartment, originally designed as a life raft cannister storage, presents some interesting possibilities for the future.
Below decks this boat really shines. There is a decent sized Vberth forward with storage/holding tk under and shelves above. An athwartships head compartment aft of that is nicely done, fully molded for easy cleaning with shower, sink and a floor drain to a decent bige sump. A truly usable shower is closed off from the cabins with sliding doors fore and aft.
The main salon is nicely done, with plenty of storage behind the settee backs, and large storage areas where the Nicholson version provided pilot berths port and starboard. Good joinery, solid wood "caned-like" cabinet doors for ventilation. Tankage is below the settees both sides (44 Gal fuel, 40 gal water)
A nav station to port and galley to starboard complete the main cabin area.
The real surprise, especially for a boat designed nearly 25 years ago, is a truly workable aft cabin under the cockpit. The forementioned bridge deck provides good headroom (over 5 feet) in this area, the berth is fore & aft and large, and there is a nice hanging locker and small settee to port for comfort and convenience. More storage aft of the lockers, and machinery space (batteries, reefer, gear and shaft access) under the aft berth. A panel in the aft bulkhead allows access to the transom area and steering system as well as throughhulls etc.
Later versions went to a masthead rig and the interiors show less storage space and improved finish in the forward cabin area.
We've had this boat a full season and have been thrilled with her in every way. We have logged 69 days aboard,(60 overnights) so far in 2005 and it's easy to see how this boat can be used as a liveaboard!
And perhaps best of all, we are out there with a boat that is not "just another Hunter or Catalina".

------------------------------
Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
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Dave Wright
Junior Member

Registered: April 2006
Posts: 1
Review Date: Mon April 17, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros:
Cons:

I just bought a fast 345 and am happy there are others out there that have them and like them
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Anonymous
Review Date: Wed June 21, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 7 

 
Pros:
Cons:

These boats are very popular in Brazil and after being around for 20 years or so hold their value very, very well. The original boats had a 3/4 rig. This was altered during production a full mast head rig due to the light winds here in Brazil.

Most of the boats are powered bu CONTROL engines - 48 hp VW Kombi marinised diesels. I think this marinisation was originally devised by Pathfinder (Canada). People are now repowering with YANMAR's and some with VOLVO's.

A number of people have sailed around the world in the 345 (http://br.geocities.com/sv_triton/) and many are sailed across to Europe and up to the Caribbean.

A total of 127 345's were produced here in Brazil. I have hull no. 99 which I have owned for the past 9 years. My boat is currently undergoing a full 8 moths refit. The boat has been stripped and everything removed.

If you need any info. or pictures you can email me at skipperx@terra.com.br
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skipperx
Junior Member

Registered: March 2006
Review Date: Tue June 27, 2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Hi Ron,



The company CONTROL: They are no longer in operation. There is however another company in Brazil that marinizes a number of diesel engines and they have parts for the CONTROL marinization. There are quite a few really good mechanics around here with a lot experience with these engines and the marinizations. The only real problem that people have had is the engine overheating. The VW diesel does NOT like this as the head seems to warp quite easily. There are a couple of problems which caused this:



Raw Water Inlet – The intake thru hull is too small at ˝”.


RAW WATER PUMP – The flow rate of the original pumps was too low. On my first VW block I had overheating problems. This was simply solved by putting on a larger JABSCO pump. I also removed the thermostat which most people have done down here.


The source of the overheating problem, I believe is really due to the size of the raw water pump. The marinization was developed in Canada and the UK where the water temp. is much lower then here in Brazil. Our water temp. is about 20 – 24 C.



I found a brand new WV block 4 years ago for US$ 1,500!!!! Fantastic for a 48hp power block.!! I transferred all the injection pumps and marinization system over to the new block any it has been running fine ever since. I do have problems with the ALT belts being chewed up at an alarming rate.



I do have the original CONTROL documentation, but it is all in Portuguese. I purchased an engine manual on the internet (from a company in the US) for the VW Kombi diesel.



HULL FLEXING: The first I had heard of this was in a tread on the internet. No one here in Brazil has ever mentioned it. I have my boat upon the hard at present for the refit. There is some flex as most of the weight is supported by the keel and not by the cradle (the cradle does not have any front support). I have attached a number of pictures for you to see. You will note that the back internal grid above the keel has been pushed up a little and has cracked. I am not concerned with this. Once the boat is back in the water and the hull has settled it will be reinforced and repaired.



Let me know if you need any info. or advice . I will send you photos of my refit as it progresses.



Regards, David
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Faster

Just another Moderator

Registered: September 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
Posts: 14957
Review Date: Fri December 14, 2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Follow up

We've now owned the boat for 8 years and have enjoyed it thoroughly. We have done upgrades on a regular basis, summary below.

Dodger
Radar (on stern post and display at helm)
Upgraded batteries to 4x 6V T105s + starter batt
Headsail Furler
Newer sails (modified J-105 used)
Dyneema backstay, replaced all standing rigging
Removed 'treadmaster cockpit non skid' and repainted sole
Added macerator

Engine:
New mixing elbow
New exchanger bundle (sprang a leak)
injectors serviced/rebuilt
upgraded alternator

The hull flex did raise it's ugly head to the extent that I became concerned. This past fall (2012) we removed all the settee furniture, tanks, etc and rebuilt the entire floor grid. Details here:

http://www.sailnet.com/forums/gear-m...build-diy.html

Please with the results so far.

Still love the boat's layout, cockpit area is still a limitation, love the fit and finish below.

------------------------------
Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
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