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Why influence semi custom and custom catamaran designs?
Look at all designs and try to bring all the good aspects together
By Zsolt Esztergomy
Yacht Sales
Released: 12/11/2007

These are several ways you can set-up a Mega Cat in order to give you the perfect set-up. You can find a perfect solution for them already existing on the market, but maybe on a different boat. It is essential to look at all designs and try to bring all the good aspects together on the boat you are buying within the parameters of flexibility of the designer and builder. If you keep asking for them hopefully you can influence the designs early enough to correct it.

Dinghy storage?

On a 65’ plus catamaran some arrangement has to be made to be able to lift the dinghy then put it ON some cradle for safe, easy storage for passages, and easy access for everyday use.

On True North P65’ there is an aftermarket platform and an in boom crane. It was a pleasure to deal with. In less than 5 minutes the dinghy could be secured for a Trans Pacific passage including fitting a proper cover on top. When the dinghy was in the water the area gave us extra space for dive gear setup, and for the kids to jump off from all day long.
Privilege recognized this problem and on their new 745 have dedicated crane and aft platform for the dinghy.

Yapluka 70

Yapluka 70 started with davits as a plan, and then they built a deck. You can lift the dinghy either with a stand alone crane, or an in boom crane. Downside of this is that it was already an after thought. There was no provisions made in the already designed hulls, for the extra weight that now they have to support. But it is better late then never. Now at least the dinghy sits firm, and when the dinghy is in the water, there is a nice deck area to use as staging point for diving or simply lounging around.
Larger Yapluka designs come with aft deck space allocated for the dinghy to be lifted up on to.

Sunreef 74

Sunreef 74 has the pickup lines come out of the overhanging bridge deck to lift then have cradle straps to hold up, the aft and fore lines to secure the swing. To correct this spider web, on the next boat you order you can ask for some foldout or slide out chalks (See design on Cilium). Then simply you lift the dinghy with the existing system slide-fold the chalks out and lower the dinghy back. This would be safer, aesthetically pleasing and accomplished without much weight added.

Sunreef designs over 74 feet: It is not clear what they would plan, but looking at the style with the overhanging bridge deck, again in my opinion all these larger designs could all use similar systems what I suggest as an after market solution for the 74. The key is to remind the designers up front and not simply expect that they will get it right the first time.

Cilium, a VPLP design 91’ NZ built cat has in boom lift for lifting the dinghy up, then the chalks fold out from the back of the nacelle and the dinghy gets eased back down on them. Simple light weight solution.

Passenger loading from the dinghy to the stern steps.

Sunreef 122

Without a doubt Sunreef’s
design on their larger models is the best simplest solution to this problem. The inside coming on both scoops come up short on, exposing the landing area at the bottom of the steps. All the crew has to do is guide the dinghy to the inside of the scoop and the gusts can comfortably step on to the landing.
Siluette 760, by Matrix is an other example of this style solution.

Visibility from bridge deck helm station (‘s)
Naturally on all cases you have a good view looking forward. It is better with 2 stations than one, but the size of the catamaran and the design of the bridge deck will dictate the number of stations.

Sunreef 122

If the helm station is in the middle forward area of the bridge deck you loose sight of all but forward view. It is a good idea to place the helm as much as possible out to the side, enough so that you see the length of either port or starboard side rail of the catamaran. That will eliminate the need for elaborate close circuit TV cameras, or walky-talkies between the crew and captain. If you observe many 100-200+ feet mega yachts all have a station on their bridge deck where the helmsman can view the entire length of the side rail.

If there were only one station to be on the bridge deck, I would ask to be the STB side. This would always allow clear sight to your right from where vessels you need to give right of way may be coming from while under power. Some may argue that it will favor docking on the starboard side, which is traditionally the owner’s cabin side as well, and to be kept away from the creaking fenders and dock lines. This is true, but these catamarans are not traditional, and I believe it is worth leaving the past behind for the sake of common sense and above all SAFETY.


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