Crowther spindrift 40

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Cleveland, Aug 1, 2016.

  1. Cleveland
    Joined: Nov 2013
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    Cleveland Junior Member

    Hey everyone I recently purchased an old Lock Crowther catamaran thats been wasting away in the sacramento river delta.

    Beyond that I don't have a lot of information. It was built in Seattle in either 1985 or possibly earlier.

    I was wondering if anyone may have more information about this type of cat, experience in working on and modernizing one, ideas or big red flags I should be looking for, or just want to tell me I'm crazy for taking on this project. I also thought this might be a good place to document my progress.

    Ideally id like to replace the rigging, the electrical, the plumbing. I previously owned a buccaneer 24 and am familiar with Crowther's disregard for living accommodations. So at some point, remodeling the pilot house and cockpit perhaps adding sugar scoop sterns would be great. However I'm trying to get it back into standard sailing shape before i mess with anything. But the pilot house and cockpit are not exactly comfortable and lack pretty much any seating. Adding shoulders to the pilot house to give internal access to the hulls and additional head room to the queen berths would be a larger project and maybe undertaken.

    Im tuning 31 this month, and It's been a dream of mine to cruise the pacific on a fast cat. Taking on this project is a big step toward making that dream a reality. This one fit my criteria of being very inexpensive, high bridge deck clearance, wide stance, thin hulls, dagger boards, and one of my favorite designers. I loved my Buc 24 but it was too small. This is quite a bit of yacht, and I am very excited to get to work on this project.

    the boat when the previous owner bought it 6/7 years ago, perhaps last time it moved, out to the delta.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    and as it sits now

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Thank you in advance to you guys, you've always been a great resource.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
  2. jamez
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    jamez Senior Member

    Provided the basic boat is sound you could do a lot worse for what you plan. Looks a good score. The Crowther catalogue shows hull access from within the rear of the bridgedeck cabin. Looks like sort of a crawl through. The description makes much of the low profile design of the bridgedeck cabin with a pop-top for headroom when necessary. On your boat it looks like the pop-top has been made permanent :).
     
  3. catsketcher
    Joined: Mar 2006
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    Location: Australia

    catsketcher Senior Member

    We had good friends with a Spindrift with your type of cabin. The boat was pretty unergonomic - Lock, for all his height and gangliness must have been a supple guy.

    In the end they did a couple of major modifications. They ripped off the cabin and put on a new one one. It is a pretty major job but not beyond anyone who can read and work with tools. They also put chamfer panels into the walkways in each hull. It totally transformed the boat.

    For a young single guy I would recommend just getting it right and going sailing but if the cabin is a bit rotten or just badly built I would rip it off and replace it with a nice foam cabin. I made a foam cabin for my 38 footer in about 3 weeks on the hard - not that long and it is very nice to live in.

    The chamfer steps can be moulded easily and put into the boat in a matter of two weeks - all faired. All up - about 6 weeks for a basic job which will make the boat much nicer to live on. (You can do a fair bit of work before the boat is pulled out to save some money on boatyard fees).

    Lock designed the cabin so that you could sheet the headsail to the deck and still have a good (12 degree) sheeting angle. Now we know that you can sheet the headsail to the cabin. Use composites for headsail tracks, over the top pulleys and etc and you will have a strong and leakproof cabin and it will cost heaps less than if you start buying hardware from the chandlery.

    cheers

    Phil
     
  4. redreuben
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    Location: Beaconsfield Western Australia

    redreuben redreuben

    Cleveland, I appreciate you want more comfort and usability just bear in mind that it is a lightweight performance oriented boat and that Americanising it with air con, dishwashers, spa and a pool table ;) will kill the performance and may even break the boat. Catsketchers suggestions sound right on the money.
    Great project, luck to ya.
     
  5. oldsailor7
    Joined: May 2008
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    Location: Sydney Australia

    oldsailor7 Senior Member

    Cleveland,
    Phil and R.R. know what they are talking about. I can't really say any more except take it out and sail it to get the feel of it. You will then get a better idea of what you want.
    Remember Clive Cessna's famous quote:- Simplicate and add less weight". :)
     
  6. Cleveland
    Joined: Nov 2013
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    Cleveland Junior Member

    Very nice thank you guys.

    There are a few rotted sections of the deck that ill need to replace, and a bare minimum of seating added to the cabin and cockpit. However I am familiar with the weight restrictions and will not be adding modern comforts like AC.

    OS7 do you know where I might be able to find any original plans?
    I think they would help a lot with rebuilding the rig.

    Catsketcher thank you very much for the information. It sounds like the cabin is not structural. I don't suppose you have any way of putting me in contact with your friends? Also what exactly are chamfer panels? I tried looking it up but couldn't see what you mean. thats great information about the sheeting angles thank you.

    One of my main concerns with main entry into the hulls being from the deck is difficulty and danger accessing them at sea. There are small steps molded into the sides of the hulls, but its a big drop from the deck, and a gymnastic move to get down that way. The only other way into them is across the two berths, which might not be great if wet for example. Having never experienced that at sea, Im wondering if any of you think that would be worth addressing.

    The previous owner had dreams of adding the shoulders to the cabin to make interior access easier, and left quite a bit of balsa core sheets and hundreds of dollars of different weight fiberglass and epoxy. He never got a round to it, and I am trying to weigh my options.

    I agree that I want to keep the boat light, and really I just want to go sailing. But i am handy and have the time to do the work. I also don't know exactly how to proceed with those modifications, and so Ill have to take out my copy of the west systems.

    Heres the only plans i could find
    [​IMG]
    I've spoken with Stuart there at who may be able to help.

    what it could look like
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcoQ6zzWVRQ

    across the bed into the hull
    [​IMG]

    quite a drop, small stairs (photo from before previous owner)
    [​IMG]

    big butt
    [​IMG]

    bones are still there
    [​IMG]
     
  7. catsketcher
    Joined: Mar 2006
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    Location: Australia

    catsketcher Senior Member

    A quick play around

    Cleveland

    I have drawn what I would do with the steps. My 38ft cat has boxy type ones of these but I would make them this way as it is stronger, easier to make and less drag in the water. I have not drawn the steps inside the blister but I can do that if you can't see where they would go. I would make these from 2 layers of 600gm biax over 12mm foam. Moulded over a tube of about 350mm radius. Start scoping out round rubbish bins, kids toys, anything that might be a good mould for the blisters. They will change the way you get into the hulls.

    I'll check with the owners and get back to you on contacts.

    As for cabins - yours is pretty terrible and has one of the major issues that people who don't think a lot include on cabins - headroom all the way to the front. On a boat like yours you want headroom but not everywhere. You want headroom between the hulls for a while and then you duck anyway so you can reduce headroom at the side of the cabin. At the front of the cabin you are getting ready to sit down again so you can reduce headroom again. Somewhere tall to stand up in at the middle/back of the cabin and less around the edges. So I would attack the cabin so that the new cabinsides are wider and overlap the blister, reduce height forward and make it moulded looking with the headsail sheeting to the cabin and use composite over the top pulley to get the sheet back to the deck.

    cheers

    Phil
     

    Attached Files:

  8. catsketcher
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    catsketcher Senior Member

    I just remembered that there was a Spindrift that put a blister on deck as well. This is the easiest way to get the extra headroom - a blister underneath and one above it on deck. Make them at home and put them on at the boatyard.
     
  9. redreuben
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    redreuben redreuben

    Chamfer panel

    Cleve; a chamfer panel is an angled panel from the hull to the underside of the bridge deck so imagine a panel on approx 45 under the bridge deck faired out front and back into the hull lines. Look at Schionings Radical Bay, most of them have them.
     
  10. rogerf
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    rogerf Junior Member

    Hi Cleveland.

    The cabin is structural in that there are two chainplates each port and starboard; either one or two of the lowers attach to these. You need to carefully consider this issue, IMHO.
     
  11. Cleveland
    Joined: Nov 2013
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    Cleveland Junior Member

    wow thank you very much guys. Phil, those drawings make it very clear.

    roger thanks for pointing out the chainplates, I will have to figure out where to put them, and how best to attach them.


    There is another issue with the boat, you all might be familiar with. the auxiliary motor is a large diesel perkins, mounted in front of the mast. then it uses a hydraulic transmission to send power to two small hydraulic motors in the sterns attached to the prop shaft.

    Has anyone seen a system like this before? i am having a very difficult time finding any information about it.

    the hoses from the transmission are also run externally under the bridge deck, which to see seems sketchy at best.
     
  12. rustybarge
    Joined: Oct 2013
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    rustybarge Cheetah 25' Powercat.

    These guys supply hydraulic drive systems for Cats, maybe worth sending them potos they may still carry spares that will fit your setup.

    http://www.peachment.co.uk
     
  13. CT249
    Joined: May 2003
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    CT249 Senior Member

    From vague memory (Phil and others would know better) you may also want to check whether this boat has the reinforcements that were designed after Double Brown (???) was lost off NZ. I think they were gussets or something othre structural reinforcement between the inner edge of the hulls and the bridgedeck. From what Lock and his assistants said a loooong time ago, they are a pretty easy thing to install.
     
  14. catsketcher
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    catsketcher Senior Member

    Double Arrow? Yes the gussets were at the bulkhead/underwing junction. Pennant, the original 45 needed some as she started splitting there. Grab some ply and some uni and beef this sharp angle up. A wooden join has little cross grain strength and uni glass is very good here.
     

  15. redreuben
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    redreuben redreuben

    Reinforcement

    2c Double Bias. :)
     
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