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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
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Re: Lets have a chat about multis.
I think the performance issue is a debatable one, but it depends greatly on the boats themselves and the point of sail. On a 50nm passage Guadeloupe to Antigua some years back, close reaching a 40' cat didn't put enough time on our 37 ft mono to get into harbour prior to our catching up as the doused sail outside. As you noted hard on the wind you gave up very little yourselves.
I think many cruising cats suffer from overloading and that's what takes the edge off their performance.
Other issues that seem to come up include the clearance of the midsection- apparently certain models are known to pound in ocean waves as the mid "belly" doesn't have enough clearance (but that's anecdotal, have not seen that) I'm sure another factor in the apparent lack of performance could well be the skill levels of the (primarily) charter crews -I'm sure that even an experienced mono sailor may struggle to get a cat up to speed..
The ability to provide multiple relatively private cabins makes it a no brainier for charter operators, I suppose.. And in a quiet area like the BVIs they probably make more sense than for island hopping further south and east.
Our Caribbean cruising friends were avid longtime multi sailors... But chose a mono for themselves.. That spoke volumes to me.
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)