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Thread: power cats?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    592

    Default power cats?

    I noticed, when we were in Hawaii a couple of years back, that there seemed to be a lot of power cats. I assume an advantage is less hull in the water so maybe a bit more efficient for fuel purposes. However, I wonder how they handle. Anyone have experience? I would think on a long straight run, one might not notice much difference but it appeared to me that they might turn all that well.

    Randy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 1999
    Location
    West Boothbay Harbor, Maine
    Posts
    22,929

    Default Re: power cats?

    A friend, John Kiley, designed and has a patent on assymetrical-hulled power cat that address the problems of some cats at speed, mentioned below:

    From the patent: "...among the characteristics of conventional split-V planing catamaran hulls is that they do not bank well and, therefore, tend to skid in high speed turns. They also may present difficulties in steering control when encountering quartering or cross waves. A further difficulty that may be encountered with conventional powered catamaran designs is that they may develop more of a wake than is desirable at low speeds."

    The patent here: https://www.google.com/patents/US5526762

    Several builders have used his design: Benchmark Boats, Calcutta and SeaSport. For example: http://www.seasportboats.com/boat/pacific-3200/
    "... and the great shroud of the sea rolled on as it rolled five thousand years ago."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    South Puget Sound/summer Eastern carib./winter
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    13,419

    Default Re: power cats?

    I see wave piercing cats in the Caribbean used as passenger ferries. I've ridden them a few times. I find them just amazing the way they smooth out waves and swells.
    Last edited by wizbang 13; 11-12-2017 at 01:15 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Walney, near Cumbria UK
    Posts
    35,218

    Default Re: power cats?

    Quote Originally Posted by wizbang 13 View Post
    I see wave piercing cats in the Caribbean used as passenger ferries. I've ridden them a few times. I find them just amazing the way they smooth out waves and swells.
    They have got to be carefully designed for the type of seas they work in. The early ones were nicknamed "Vomit Comets"

    These are popular for commercial fishing
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    13,140

    Default Re: power cats?

    Power catamarans range from 200 mph-plus offshore racers to what amounts to a cruising sailboat sans masts. You can't generalize, but the limitations are due to the limited displacement for a given hull length. That makes the hulls very narrow, which has some advantages. You get a wide beam with less wave-making resistance. Handling is a matter of individual hull design. I think the basic fuel efficiency and resistance to rolling make for a great alternative to monohull trawlers, although you sacrifice load-carrying ability.

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