SailNet Community banner

141 - 160 of 577 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,945 Posts
Mark - can you explain the more subtle differences in docking between a two-engine cat and a mono? I have to admit I was never the perfect docker on our mono. We always backed into slips, and ~5% of the time I would be carrying too much speed, or not aligned correctly, or whatever.

It seems you have much more fine control over a cat - both in terms of the engines, but also in terms of dealing with the momentum. Being able to literally spin the boat on a dime, and not have to mess with back-and-fill like on a mono, sounds pretty dreamy.
There is no subtle difference between the two - the difference is night and day, black and white. With two engines 20' apart, you can make the boat do a tango through a corkscrew. Strong cross winds are the only thinking one really needs to do because of the extra windage. Our catamaran made me an overnight docking expert.

Our previous monohull was a full-keel, barn door rudder, and undersized prop in an small aperature behind a thick deadwood (a real "blue water boat"). The best I could do with that boat was hang fenders everywhere and keep our liability insurance paid.

All control is done with engines while the wheel is locked in center. It is possible to use the rudders with engines to make the boat go sideways - once you get the hang of it, you can simply exit/enter a dock sideways like you have bow and stern thrusters.

Mark
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,264 Posts
Twin screw boats still have prop walk, the difference is, you get to chose the engine and there for which way to walk your stern. You can split, which allows the boat to turn in place without advancing, you can do a reverse split that allows you to walk the boat straight sideways in either direction. You dont normally put both engines in gear in the same direction for close quarters maneuvering unless its windy, but you can. You can flare the bow like a boss with a cat and you can stop in a straight line by using both engines.

Twin screw cats really are amazing to park. The only thing better is a twin jet cat.

Any decent seamanship book will have a chapter on twin screw boat handling, Chapmans Im sure does.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,945 Posts
Man that sounds really good. I'm so over prop-walk I can't even tell you.
Two engines - one with right hand prop and the other with left hand. Zero prop walk, and they can be put on specific engines so that their prop walk counteracts the torque of the engine being offset when running under one engine. Most saildrives have the same gearing and ratios in fwd/rev, so this is easy to do. I don't know about shaft transmissions.

Don't see how your Hobie can have so much prop walk...

Mark
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
Don't see how your Hobie can have so much prop walk...
Hobie????? How dare you! FIASCO! is, from what I've been able to find, a 1973 Spirit 17 catamaran. These were her original sails without the battens (the sails were completely trashed but I had to get a picture with them)...



Very few of these boats were made before whoever was making them went bankrupt. There's really no info about them at all. The boys and I took her from this...



to this...



Beach Cats in Rehab ? Part 1 | SMACKTALK!

I can't wait to start sailing her again in a couple of months.

So, I sail a bespoke beachcat - which should demand twice the price over what the lowly mass-produced Hobies and Prindles are going for these days. And the fact that we're engineless purists like the Pardeys and can easily sail on and off the dock drives that value up even more! And the fact that I, Smackdaddy, own it - we're now off the charts in value!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
One thing is for sure...almost 2,000 views in less than 24 hours for this thread. Sure seems to be of interest to a lot of readers.

Hopefully it can stay on track and be fun, educational, and have some of the 80 current readers posting questions and insights of their own. There are not a lot of good discussion resources out there for people interested in multihull cruising.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
Mark (and other multi sailors) - what is your strategy for truly heavy weather? Are you in the camp of a JSD (or equivalent) off the stern maintaining a controlled run that Hal Roth seems to advocate as the best all-round solution? Or do you prefer the drogue off the bow to avoid backing on the rudders?

Though there was seemingly a lot of confusion as to the exact problem with the rudders of the lost Alpha 42 BE GOOD II, I seem to recall they felt they'd been pushed backward by waves. This, in conjunction with what seems to be poor design and build of the steering system on that boat, did it in.

Just wondering.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
Holy crap! Speaking of BE GOOD TOO - they found her...IN SCOTLAND...3 years after she was abandoned off North Carolina after the steering failure!!



But alas, she's capsized. Heh-heh.



Obviously abandoned cats with no steering are completely unfit for voyaging several years in the North Sea.

Duly noted.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
In all seriousness, the story of this Alpha 42 is a cautionary tale that is applicable to this thread on many, many levels. Heavy weather, questionable decision-making, poor preparation, questionable design and construction, you name it...

http://www.wavetrain.net/news-a-views/558-helicopter-evacuation-abandoning-be-good-too

Here is the steering fix they had to try while offshore in really bad weather - using a freakin' allen wrench for a pin...



I don't think Alpha is around anymore.

Then you have the Wildcat line out of South Africa that went under because of poor building practices and customer/warrant service to address their poor quality. Remember Bumfuzzle?







Yet, after expensive repairs, they still took this boat the rest of the way around the world.

So, lots of good and bad out there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,945 Posts
Mark (and other multi sailors) - what is your strategy for truly heavy weather? Are you in the camp of a JSD (or equivalent) off the stern maintaining a controlled run that Hal Roth seems to advocate as the best all-round solution? Or do you prefer the drogue off the bow to avoid backing on the rudders?

Though there was seemingly a lot of confusion as to the exact problem with the rudders of the lost Alpha 42 BE GOOD II, I seem to recall they felt they'd been pushed backward by waves. This, in conjunction with what seems to be poor design and build of the steering system on that boat, did it in.

Just wondering.
Our main strategy for truly heavy weather is to stay out of it and out of the areas that create it. Our longest passages are 5-6 days, so forecasts play a large role. Most of our passages are 2-3 days, so forecasting is pretty accurate. We avoid passages through hurricane zones in hurricane season, and stay out of the North Atlantic during winter.

MarkJ gave a good accounting of how he avoids weather by using his noodle. This isn't boat-type related stuff.

If we needed to, I prefer a drogue. The JSI is probably the best for this. We have a single drogue on board. But I don't think a drogue is for truly heavy weather like tropical storms/hurricanes - it is more for slowing the boat down and keeping control in heavier weather than normal, but not crap hits the fan stuff. So far, we have only experienced 40kts on passages, and that was off the wind. Shortening sail to keep the boat speed <=8kts and letting the AP steer works fine for this. There won't be any backing on rudders when running with a drogue because you will still be going forward at 2-5kts.

The rudders on BG2 were woefully underbuilt. It was a larger boat than ours with larger rudders and used 1.37" hollow tube rudder posts with no rudder stops. For comparison, ours are 2" solid posts with stops bolted through a bulkhead. There were other problems with the steering system as well. The biggest mistake they made was taking the first boat of a brand new model design and build, pulling it out of the build shed untested, and heading straight into the North Atlantic in winter. That was just stupid.

Mark
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,264 Posts
"Prop walk" is less perceptable on a cat or any twin screw vessel because they are rotating in opposite directions when both in use and it is made even less perceptable if there is a sail drive, but just because cats have less perceptable prop walk than mono hull sailboats doesnt mean they have no prop walk. Thats like saying outboard motors on power boats have no prop walk.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,264 Posts
Only if they have different handed props. Not all transmissions can be set that way.

Mark
Not a deal breaker, but it would be a worthwhile consideration when shopping for a production cat, all other things being equal, I would give preference to a model that had opposite rotations.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,961 Posts
Okay Mast.

I'm in this thread to talk about cruising cats. That's all. A couple of the capsize examples above are from hurricanes which is why I mentioned it. To be clear, I don't hold that multis are great boats for hurricanes or tornadoes regardless of where the boat is in proximity to land.
Most capsizes occurred NOT in hurricanes so that was just some tactics to divert attention from a real problem.

Clearly, there are quite a few cases where catamarans capsize in various high-wind conditions that have absolutely nothing to do with hurricanes. Even at anchor. This is a life-threatening situation and it is something I would take into consideration in any decision. I am not saying this danger is enough for me to never ever wanting to own or sail a cat but it it is one of several important factors.

Mind you, I have never sailed a cruising cat (that makes two of us...) and I don't have much interest in doing that. I have had some very good sailors report that sailing a cruising catamaran feels like 'sailing a Zamboni.' :devil I might appreciate it when I feel I am getting old...
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
From the BE GOOD TOO story here is more confirmation on the differences in motion/security between multis and monos (from Charlie Doane who knows a thing or two)...

Immediately after the hit we found we had trouble controlling the boat. It seemed at the time that our loss of forward momentum had made it hard to steer, and the boat started spinning in circles, tacking and then jibing. We started up the other engine, and even with both engines running hard we could not regain control. After our second uncontrolled jibe, Hank ordered that we should drop the mainsail and lie ahull to the waves. The wind by now was blowing over 40 knots from the south and seas were running about 18-20 feet.

Frankly, this was the one point in our whole adventure where I was most nervous. I have sailed in 40 knots or more several times, but I had never before just laid to the wind and let a boat drift broadside to waves in conditions like this. I had always believed this was a bad idea and that it is best to adopt more active tactics. But the boat was very happy. The beam of the Alpha 42 (we were aboard hull no. 1, which had just been delivered to Gunther and Doris) is very wide for a cruising cat of this size, with an unusually high bridgedeck, and we had remarked earlier that the hull was very stiff and its motion was remarkably comfortable. We now were amazed at how stable it seemed lying to these large seas. The rolling was not very pronounced and only rarely did waves slap the boat or land on deck.

That afternoon we contacted our weather-router, Ken McKinley, by sat-phone and he advised that we were now south of the Gulf Stream and that we could expect the wind to increase to 45 knots before switching to the west. We continued lying to the waves through the rest of the afternoon and all of the night, during which the wind did indeed increase into the mid-40s, with gusts to over 50. Gunther later insisted he saw one hit 60.The boat, however, was still quite comfortable, and we bided our time standing watches, reading, and sleeping.
So it sounds like Alpha had done a good job with the design - just completely undercut it all with the build quality.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts
Now THIS is interesting! Here is a video by the Distant Shores couple I linked to above. Their previous Southerly 48 was damaged in St. Maarten during Irma. At about 5 minutes in, she interviews Mike H. from Pantaenius Insurance who discusses the issues of insuring boats in named storms. You might be surprised what he says about cats in this situation - but will also get a bit of a reality check on what we're talking about in regards to hurricanes and why boat type matters little...


In any case, very good info regarding named-storm coverage regardless of your boat type.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
17,467 Posts

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
322 Posts
Interesting poll...



Bummer that I don't see "More Seaworthy" - that would be my vote based on everything I've been seeing.


It’s not the poll that’s interesting it’s the post by Sandy, an old employee of the NTSB.
When we bought our first cruising cat in 1992 I had a conversation with a Lloyds of London agent who told me they gave a slightly better rate to the Catamaran as they were less of a risk than a monohull. This study pretty much mirrors what the Lloyds of London agent told me.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
141 - 160 of 577 Posts
Top