Narrowing the beam

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Dr. Peter, Apr 1, 2010.

  1. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    G'day,

    I have considered trimarans (Corsairs and Farriers) but they are not a cheap second-hand buy in Australia, and they are not 'open' boats. I did look at the Gougen 32 - its a well executed idea but I'm still after something without the bridgedeck.

    I looked up the Macgregor 36 on Google and it is very much in the 'style' that I am seeking albeit it is too large both in length and width.

    The question about the car is pertinent. My car purchased new in 2009 is rated to tow 2.3 tonnes (that's about 5000 lbs I think). It has a limited slip differential fitted and a four speed auto with transmission cooler. It tows my current boat, Hartley 18ft, easily.

    The limit of width allowable on Australian roads is 8 ft (approx 2.5m). I think you can go a little wider if only towing during daylight hours.

    Here are my options:

    1. Discover a standard trailerable-sized catamaran with basic accommodation in the hulls (no bridgedeck). I know of the Windrush 600 (an Australian design which is very basic as far as accommodation is concerned - and they are reasonably priced - about $AUS12000 will buy one second hand).

    It's the only style of boat like this which fits on a trailer which Is why I started the thread about modifying a catamaran.

    Are there open bridgedeck catamarans out there which fold to fit onto a trailer?

    2. My other option, which is why I began this thread, was to modify an existing boat to fit onto a trailer. This modifications are basically:

    a. retrofit a 'folding' design. but I suspect that the retrofit will over-capitalise what is meant to be an inexpensive boat.

    b. simply shorten the beams.

    To date no one has responded that they have tried option 2b.

    Peter
     
  2. cavalier mk2
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    cavalier mk2 Senior Member

    The only other thing I can think of is the telescoping aluminum beam approach used by Kurt Hughes and others. It would retrofit as easily to a wharram style boat as anything else. I'm happiest with our big multihull but I did hang onto our 23' Macgregor monohull cutter because it worked so well. With no hulls to extend it takes an hour if you're organized or 2 if things are tangled to step and raise the mast, bend the sails, hook up the rudder etc...I usually kept it in the water and rigged ! However your hulls finish up the easier your boat is to rig the more you'll use it . I use a sliding gunter rig on my sailing canoe and think it is a great way to shorten spar length so you can keep the mast stepped in a tabernacle when trailering. The MacGregor mast is longer than the boat so stepping adds time. I guess I should have said if narrow go long and go short. The wharram tacking crabclaw is a possibility. A bolted wharram classic beam system might be faster to reconnect than the lashing system . When comparing rigs for trailering remember the guy with the performance set up can be beaten by the guy who had the 1/2 day head start.....
     
  3. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    Thanks for your thought on this. I appreciate it.

    Personally I'm not a big fan of rigging so anything that simplifies that is good.

    Thanks again,

    Peter
     
  4. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    Shaking the tree

    It's been a little while. I thought I'd shake the tree and see if any new thoughts are out there.
     
  5. aussiebushman
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    aussiebushman Innovator

  6. dstgean
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    dstgean Senior Member

    Dr. Peter,

    I'm thinking of doing jsut that with a small cat I'm currently building. I too like the Pacific flavor of the Wharrams, but long assembly times are pretty much out of the question for ease of assembly and actually sailing the boat. Clearly wider is better, but there are other ways to think about the situation. Many good suggestions have been put forth by forum members, and I have been busy copying images for future reference. Interesting stuff. You mention wanting a sailboat that is like a Wharram but is road trailerable. Why not choose the size Wharram and make the boat narrow? You'd have to keep the rig size small as if capsized it woudl stay that way. The G32 had some provision for dealing with that possibility--and as a racing boat it would have probably been tested too.

    I'm building a Gary Dierking Tamanu as an overgrown beachcat with some camping accomodations on deck. If you want some accomodations in the hulls, you will probably need to go with a bigger boat or accept bridgedeck cabins for the shorter boats. Most hulls under 20-25' are too fine to have comfortable accomodations in the hulls. Some solve this problem by having the hulls flare like the Folding Woods Wizard and Sango. That's still a possibility for me as it really makes for a much more stable boat.

    So, would you like a bigger boat that is still trailerable? The link to the G32 is a good direction. Without the bridgedeck, it would be too slim to have any accomodations in the hulls. The smallest hulls with accomodation in the hulls are the Reynolds 21, Woods Wizard or simpler Janus. Is a folder an option? Do you want to purchase the whole boat that would be workable for your interests, just modify an existing boat, or build from scratch? I'm as interested in what you find as anyone, as I'm doing a similar build right now.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I'm waffling between a simple folder or just making it 8'6" wide--the legal trailering width here in the US.

    Dan
     
  7. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    On the other hand

    The original intent of my question was to find someone who had tried narrowing the beam of a catamaran to fit onto a trailer.

    At the time I assumed I would be dealing with an open bridgedeck boat like a Wharram. The modification would include either reducing the mast height and the sail area, or ensuring reefing underway was easily achieved. I assumed the decking and tramp mats would need modification too. The thing about the smaller Wharrams over here in Australia is that they can be relatively cheap to buy. But there would now be a need to purchase a purpose built boat trailer. That could be a considerable sum.

    Your point about narrow hulls being too small for accomodation is well taken. In another post I alluded to a Windrush 600 which looked good on paper. I finally had a look at one in the flesh and the hulls could possibly provide accomodation for kids but not anybody fully grown.

    This all seems rather a lot of rigamarole to be going through to get a road trailerable catamaran with accommodation. Finding a trailerable cat with bridgedeck accomodation could be more sensible.

    If I was to do anything - it would be to modify a boat - my skills don't run to building.

    Peter
     
  8. dstgean
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    dstgean Senior Member

    Is sleeping in a tent too much hassle? If not, then your options open up quite a bit. On the other hand, a bridgedeck cabin cat of the right size could be obtained in your neck of the woods as the Jarcat 6 should be much more avialable in OZ than in the US.

    Dan
     
  9. oldsailor7
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    oldsailor7 Senior Member

    Dr Peter.
    See if you can find a Crowther International 23 catamaran.
    It has sliding alloy crossbeams and can be set up or down in 2hrs.
    I had one in 1979 which is still sailing/racing in South Australia.
    Four single berths, a Galley and Toilet. Mine had foam/glass folding decks and was a very dry boat. Good looking too, which is more than you can say about Wharrams. :D
     
  10. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    Hi Oldsailer,

    Googled the boat and came up with something you sald in another thread.

    I had a Crowther International 23, which I used to race every Wednesday afternoon. I kept it in a warehouse not far from the water. It had sliding beams which were a snip to slide out to the max beam. But the effort of towing it to the launching ramp, sliding it open, installing the decks, raising the mast and rigging,arranging all the running rigging sails etc: was just exhausting to do immediately before a race. Afterwards we had to reverse it all over again. A real pain.


    It doesn't seem like a long-term solution to me.
     
  11. oldsailor7
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    oldsailor7 Senior Member

     
  12. cavalier mk2
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    cavalier mk2 Senior Member

    I still think you are best off modifying a Wharram if they are easily found. A slender hull model like a Tane/tanenui or Hinamoa (for less wave interference) with a cabin wingdeck (a VW style camper top could give more harbor headroom) to tie it together would be a pretty easy modification. Instead of a purpose built trailer modifying a trailer from a boat with 8 foot beam would be a straight forward alteration. The wharram tacking crab claw rig from Child of the Sea would be a simple, cheap low center of effort rig. Most of the materials for the project could come from the home store or junkyard if you go after camper top hardware. If you need lots of load carrying you might be better off with a sharpie, then you wouldn't have to alter the trailer very much. The less spent the easier it will be to try things out and you won't feel inhibited about changing things around as you develop your boat.
     
  13. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    Cavalier 2

    Good point about modifying a trailer. I guess if I'm going to do such an extensive modification to a boat I shouldn't baulk at modifying a trailer too.


    dstgene
    I checked out your thread. It seems like we are coming at the same problem albeit from a different perspective. Reduction vs. Extension. Yours is a good concept IMHO as Hobie masts, rigging, foils and sails can be had for a song. If you get it worked out you may find yourself with some followers.


    Thanks guys, I was about ready to give the whole idea away :p

    Peter
     
  14. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    Here is a Windrush 600 with a tent - mmm you're right it could simplify things

    [​IMG]

    http://www.lswsa.org.au/windrush/boathome2.jpg
     

  15. Dr. Peter
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    Dr. Peter Junior Member

    So---- How life slaps you in the face. I met a bloke with a wider Windrush 600 for sale. The dollar equity was low but the sweat equity was probably high. The deal was good for me. OK time for the family to show some real commitment to sail the boat - who wants to help actually sail this puppy? Answer - no one.

    As a great and wise man once said, get a boat that you can sail yourself.
     
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