Lookin' for an excuse ...
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Tampa Bay, FL
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I'm no expert on catamarans and have sailed only a few. One thing I noticed early on and then actually started looking for was the location of the stays. Most of the port and starboard stays are further aft of the beam than on a monohull. This compensates for the absence of a back stay. The problem is you can't move the boom out too far when going downwind.
Other than that minor complaint, they are fast. On a delivery a couple of years ago, we had a 31' catamaran up to 13 knots in the gulf stream off the coast of Florida. Then the owner decided to reduce sail. It was night and pitch black. My recommendation was to leave things as they were rather than turn broadside to some steep swells as we turned into the wind. And that brings up the other topic of safety. In a monohull, I would not be as concerned, but a catamaran can get flipped with a rogue wave.
Nevertheless, they sure are fun to sail and all the space makes for a lot of room to stretch out when at anchor.