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post #1 of 8 Old 08-03-2002 Thread Starter
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I''m looking at a Catalina 36 at the present time , to use as a blue-water cruser . I would welcome any comments on this
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post #2 of 8 Old 08-04-2002
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My comment... duck!!! You''re going to get hammered on this board for mentioning Catalina and "blue-water" in the same thought. Suggest you go to catalina owners website or e-mail archives here at sailnet to balance the drubbing that you''re likely to take from the regulars here! Best of luck...
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post #3 of 8 Old 08-04-2002
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i like the catalinas features,but ive heard there not blue water boats??

instead of hammering,could they please explain "why" there not blue water boats

thanks
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post #4 of 8 Old 08-04-2002
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They''re structurely weak. Thin glass. Their rigging and electrical systems aren''t really up to the job. Simply put, they''re not made for that type of work. The strength needed isn''t built into it, whether it be the steering, or anything else.

Here''s a little story.
http://www.equipped.org/0698rescue.htm
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post #5 of 8 Old 08-05-2002
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Catalina''s are designed for coastal work; but, ANY boat can be re-made to ''blue water" capability.
What one has to consider is strength of portlights, companionway, rigging, etc., .... will the cockpit be able to be completely flooded by a boarding wave and not ship soooooooooo much water that the trim would be so adversely and dangerously affected that the load in the cockpit would make the boat dangerously ''squat'' at the stern. .... would the companionway , seat lockers, ''windows'', etc. be strong enough to take such a horrendous and continual beating, etc. when the weather turns REAL nasty? Will the steering wheel and pedestal still be there after the flooded cockpit (quickly) drains??? Are there sufficient handholds INSIDE, and so spaced so that you dont have to let go and risk getting thrown accross the cabin and get seriously hurt. Has the designer removed all sharp edges and other interior in-port convenience ''designs'' upon which one would impale himself in a huge seaway. How do you stay secure in a double berth (bed, not berth) under the cockpit ... how do you fashion leecloths in a double ''walkaround'' BED?
For my personal tastes and safety concerns, OPEN interiors and huge cockpits can be downright dangerous offshore.

The obvious answer is that any ''lighweight'' CAN be strengthened by the addition of "storm shutters" or rebuild and modifications .... and the volume of the cockpit can be decreased, etc. by adding bridge decks, etc.
Sure, if you''re a super top-notch sailor, those weather anomalies will never happen to you ................ unless you decide to sleep every now and then.


If you''re intending long distance off-shore sailing, I''d suggest that you consider boats that have well established and well found historical RECORD of passagemaking (and not bet your life on an unproven designer''s daydream).

For short distance island hopping with a good weather eye, a BeneHuntaLina is FINE

........ (but in my opinion thay do "pound and hammer" when beating into high steep waves, etc. I personally think their cockpits are too BIG, the interiors tooooo open for offshore - just a personal matter of ''taste'' and safety).
;-)
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post #6 of 8 Old 08-05-2002
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I don''t consider myself ''anti-Catalina'' (nor ''pro'') but your question reminds me of how Ralph Naranjo (of the Naval Academy & CW Magazine) answers this question: He suggests you first consider the strength & suitability of 3 key areas: the basic strength of the monocoque hull/deck structure, the rudder & steering gear, and the rig and its substructure. You need all 3 of these to be up to the task.

Rich H''s link speaks to all three of these. The steering gear failed because it reportedly had been designed, along the adjacent transom structure, inadequately. Catalina has reengineered the attachment structure of the steering gear, but what is now the weak link? (The aluminum emergency tiller is yet another issue but one that exists on many boats). As you picture the hull/deck structure being repeatedly worked by the wave trains - and it sounded as tho'' this ''racking'' or twisting and wrending of the hull/deck structure was being imposed by only moderate sea states - you can appreciate the importance of the hull/deck joint. (This is why some boat builders glass the entire joint; this ''piece'' of the ''monocoque structure'' issue simply goes away). It looks like the rig held up on the whole, altho'' the link demonstrates the disability than can be visited on a boat by the roller furling unit breaking...and it appears the owner had no back-up (solent or staysail) stay in anticipation of this event.

Catalina 36''s have been almost everywhere on the earth''s oceans by this point. I happened to notice one that''s listed by one of Australia''s broker this weekend, having sailed there from the U.S. West Coast. It''s probably reasonable to believe that the boat got there due to a large amount of diligence and skill from the owner...and perhaps a fortunate set of weather windows along the way.

Jack
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post #7 of 8 Old 08-06-2002
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thank-you,
would you consider an Ericsson 32,USA to australia a better proposition?
or an as equally forboding suggestion,as the catalina to aussie?
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post #8 of 8 Old 08-07-2002
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B:

"would you consider an Ericsson 32,USA to australia a better proposition?"

FWIW the same Ralph Naranjo an almost-circumnavigation in a Ericson 39...but his rudder fell off in the Indian Ocean, along the way. Subsequently, he rebuilt major portions of the boat (e.g. the cabin top) due to the original construction being consistent with what it was initially designed for: coastal club racing.

Jack
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