What to expect from a Catalina 25 - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 12 Old 12-10-2011 Thread Starter
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What to expect from a Catalina 25

Lots of new members are here so I thought some of them may be interested in what to expect from a very common first boat.
I took out my friends 25' Catalina 25 today in Long Island Sound from Westbrook CT. This boat has a very large probably 150 roller furling Genoa that is very soft. A main with line reef point that is not ripped but is very soft and stretched. It is the fixed keel version with a 9.9 outboard.

Conditions were very very gusty from 9 knots to 25 knots with very little chop most of the time but at one time I got about 3 feet for a little while.
I had a hand held wind meter and a camera so I tried to document what the conditions were and how the boat handled it.

I was alone with tiller steering and just simple lashing for tiller control so besides playing reporter I had to take a second or two and sail the boat.

This picture is taken with the Genny rolled up quite a bit probably only 18" past the spreader. Later I took it in another foot or so so it was reefed down to about a 100 jib. As you can see the shape is horrible but better than not being reefed at all.
The main as you can see has the reef set.

Close reach, apparent wind
At 13 to 15 knots the boat was quite happy. Did not seem out of control at all and was sailing fast.

At 17 to 20 knots with these two reefs in the helm was a little heavy but still no real stress.

At 21 to 25 it seemed to me a little too much wind for this sail on a close reach. Not impossible as it only gusted so I could head up a little or let the main loose and luff a little.

I experimented with rolling up the Genny completely and just sailing with the main and that reduced the healing problem almost completely. That makes sense because the jib reefed to 100 percent was being carried too high and setting in such a bad shape it was not helping as much as it should.

I did notice that the boat speed drastically was reduced on main only. Apparently even a poorly set jib is the main driving sail on this boat. I also noticed that I was not able to tack on main only. I had to jib 270 degrees to make a tack.
This was probably because my over ground was only 3 knots as I was heading directly into a 2 knot current. I cold just not get enough speed to make the tack with out a jib upwind and up-current reefed main only.

One thing that was in my favor was that there was very little wave action.
The thing that appears to be the limiting factor on this boat is not the sailing as it seems to hand wind and waves easily at least up to 25 knots.
The limiting factor is control of the boat under power if there is a cross wind the same direction as a cross current and you are trying to motor in a chanel with even 2 foot chop. That combination can make it impossible to hold a course if you can't keep the prop in the water enough to make progress against wind and waves.

I did notice that crew positioned as far back as possible helps a lot. I have better control of the boat in those circumstances if I have another person than when I'm alone. The extra weight helps keep the prop in the water.
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post #2 of 12 Old 12-11-2011
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Talking

Good info. I had similar experience on my C22 (another common first boat).
I found that having just a little Genoa unrolled helped by keeping ex helm down.
It also helps tacking. But, I never had any problem tacking.
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post #3 of 12 Old 12-11-2011 Thread Starter
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This picture is from today.
Good old Long Island Sound co-operated with 0 to 10 knot winds.

As you can see the Catalina 25 even in very light wind of only 5 knots can get going pretty well as it is in this picture. It piped up to 10 knots and and with full genny and main was only 10 degrees angle of heal.
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post #4 of 12 Old 12-12-2011
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Hey,

What's the story with the main sail or boom? It looks like either the main is way too small or the boom is way too long.

Barry
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Barry Lenoble
Deep Blue C, 2002 C&C 110
Mt. Sinai, NY

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post #5 of 12 Old 12-12-2011 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryL View Post
Hey,

What's the story with the main sail or boom? It looks like either the main is way too small or the boom is way too long.

Barry
Not sure, the boat came that way. If I get up the ambition I should check the specs and see how far off it is.

It is not as much as the picture seems to show because of the angle of the camera but that was my question too during the survey.
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-12-2011
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Better to have too much space at the end of your boom
then not to be able to tighten your out haul all the way.

Does the main sail have #'s on it and do they match your boat? It could be a sail from a different 25 or so footer. I've seen the reverse, where the main sail came to the bitter end of the boom and there was no way to tighten the out haul without reefing the sail. At least your out haul works.

Do you use a trailer for the Cat 25' over winter?
Enjoy.

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post #7 of 12 Old 12-13-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryL View Post
Hey,

What's the story with the main sail or boom? It looks like either the main is way too small or the boom is way too long.

Barry
The boom on a C25 is designed to extend well aft of the clew of the mainsail. The reason it is done that way is because the mainsheet traveler is mounted on the transom, and the boom needs to be longer in order to have a satisfactory angle between the mainsheet tang on the end of the boom and the traveler. If the boom was shorter, the main sheet would have a tendency to sweep the cockpit during a tack or gybe, with the mainsheet snagging the occupants. If you look at David's photo, I think you can visualize it. The longer boom allows the mainsheet to sweep aft of the helmsman and all the passengers in the cockpit during a tack.
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post #8 of 12 Old 12-13-2011
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Quote:
The boom on a C25 is designed to extend well aft of the clew of the mainsail.
That is an interesting configuration. It would unbalance the sail plan, but, I wonder why they didn't just make the main bigger? With a reefed main, there will be a bunch of force in the middle of a boom that is supported only on the ends.
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Do you use a trailer for the Cat 25' over winter?
Enjoy.
Winter, what winter?
Brad and I sail all winter.
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Quote:
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That is an interesting configuration. It would unbalance the sail plan, but, I wonder why they didn't just make the main bigger? With a reefed main, there will be a bunch of force in the middle of a boom that is supported only on the ends.
I don't see how the length of the boom has anything to do with the sail plan balance.

The position of the mast yes
The size of the sail yes

But if the boom is longer than the foot of the sail it does not affect the sail plan at all.

It also makes the topping lift clear the roach easier which is another benefit.

As far as the reefed sail causing force in the middle of the boom that is true of course, hopefully the designer took that into consideration when sizing the boom.
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