Skip to main content

Mah 36

Fountaine Pajot’s new Mah 36 replaces the popular Athena 38 as the company’s entry-level boat. Since many cat builders have shied away from smaller cruising models, I was eager to see how the Mah could provide interior headroom and volume without looking top-heavy or sacrificing bridgedeck clearance. I was also interested in learning how or if the shorter waterline would



Fountaine Pajot’s new Mah 36 replaces the popular Athena 38 as the company’s entry-level boat. Since many cat builders have shied away from smaller cruising models, I was eager to see how the Mah could provide interior headroom and volume without looking top-heavy or sacrificing bridgedeck clearance. I was also interested in learning how or if the shorter waterline would affect performance under sail. Here’s what I found.

Construction
The Mah is built, just as the bigger boats are, in Fountain Pajot’s state-of-the-art, high-volume factory. The hulls are solid fiberglass below the waterline and cored above as well as in the deck. The transverse beams are reinforced to resist flex and twist. The rig is aluminum.

On deck
I was immediately impressed with the Mah 36’s proportions. The cabintop is not too high or big, and bridgedeck clearance is not too low. The hulls are tall enough to provide excellent interior volume without looking overblown. The two-person helm seat provides good visibility over the coachroof, and several comfortable seats in the cockpit provide excellent views forward through the saloon’s large companionway doors and wrap-around windows. Storage on deck is good. A single locker in the cockpit can accommodate lines and fenders, and a larger foredeck locker will swallow extra deck gear. The traveler, which runs the full width of the stern on the aft crossbeam, provides good mainsheet control, and both jibsheets can be trimmed from the helm station.

Accommodation
I sailed the three-cabin owner’s version. The owner’s cabin to starboard has a large queen bunk aft and plenty of stowage space in cabinets, drawers, and a hanging locker, plus access to another large storage locker farther forward in the hull. An opening hatch and opening ports provide plenty of ventilation. The entire starboard bow is dedicated to a head that’s bigger than heads I’ve seen on some 60-foot monohulls. The entire accommodation area is accented with stylish light varnished-wood furniture and a parquet cabin sole. The saloon has all the light, space, and seating you’d expect to find on an offshore cruising cat, though it’s a little narrower (fore and aft) than a bigger cat’s saloon would be. The galley and the nav station in the saloon are more than adequate. The chart table has a seat, and the galley has decent counter space plus a handy window for passing drinks up to the helm. All and all, it’s a comfortable interior.

Under sail
Twelve to 15 knots of wind was perfect for our test sail off Miami Beach. Speeds were consistently in the 7-knot range, and we tacked through about 95 degrees. The feedback from the helm was workable, and the boat did not require lots of subtle helm adjustments to keep the telltales flying straight back. The helm station was comfortable, and the ability to trim both jibsheets from the helm station was a plus. Under sail, this is a good little performer that doesn’t feel little when you’re under way.

Under Power
As with any twin-prop boat, performance under power didn’t provide any surprises. Even in a pretty stiff crosswind, we were able to back into our slip without much difficulty, and the engines didn’t have to work hard to push us along at an easy 7 knots. With the engines mounted aft in well-insulated boxes, noise levels in both the saloon and the aft cabins were noticeable, but not loud or intrusive.

Conclusion
Under sail, the boat performed well and did not suffer excess bridgedeck slap or a jerky
motion. Under power, it was both quick and quiet. Fountaine-Pajot’s designers achieved excellent headroom and plenty of elbowroom in both the saloon and the cabins without sacrificing proportion or performance. Fountaine-Pajot may well end up building 36-foot catamarans for the foreseeable future.

Specifications

Price: $259,500 (base, FOB East Coast) includes sails, running rigging, hot and cold pressure water, ground tackle

Builder: Fountaine-Pajot, La Rochelle, France www.fountaine-pajot.com

Designer: Joubert/Nivelt

LOA: 36’2”

Beam: 19’5”

Draft: 3’7”

Displacement: 11,023 lbs

Sail Area: (main and jib) 827 sq ft

Power: (2) 20-hp Yanmar

Tankage Fuel/water/waste: 55/71/40 gal

electrical: 300-Ah house batteries

100-Ah starting battery

(2) 115-amp alternators

Displacement-Length ratio: 105

Sail Area-Displacement ratio: 26

Certification: CE Category A (Ocean)

Related

fa70b13c-8eec-4c35-b30f-f89e497b469a

Crowdsourcing Age-of-Sail Weather Data

Although big, multi-million-dollar projects like the Large Hadron Collider and the human genome project with their legions of PHD’s tend to grab headlines, there’s still a part of play for the “citizen scientists” of the world. Amateur birders have long contributed to an ...read more

01-LEAD-Ultime-race-Yvan-Zedda,-OC-Sport-Pen-Duick

Ultims to Race Solo Around the World

For years now, maxi-trimarans, both solo-sailed and fully crewed, have been racing the clock on their own around the world in an effort to set ever faster records for the world’s fastest circumnavigation under sail. Back in 2000-01 there was also a no-holds-barred ...read more

P1-01-LEAD-018_CARYNBDAVIS_AMISTAD

Juneteenth on the Water

Discovering Amistad and Mystic Seaport Museum have partnered to organize their third annual Juneteenth festival, featuring concerts, speakers and a reflection on the lasting legacy of racial injustice in America. Declared a National Holiday in 2021, Juneteenth celebrates the end ...read more

Lead-2021-01-17-vue-03-34-av-tb-01

New Multihulls for 2022

Lagoon 51 In keeping with many of the more recently launched models created by French multihull builder Lagoon, the Lagoon 51 is all about comfort, “en plein air,” in particular, as the French might say. Topside, a whopping 80 percent of the boat’s flybridge is given over to ...read more

bermuda

How to Spectate on the Newport Bermuda

The biannual Newport Bermuda Race starts on Friday with the first warning signal at 1 pm. Whether you’re tracking a loved one’s progress or just spectating an event that draws pros and weekend warriors alike, there are plenty of ways to stay up to watch. The starting line will ...read more

03-Hyeres-220429_SOF2022_SAILINGENERGY_1933_3184-copy

US Sailing Strikes Gold in Hyères

After being skunked or nearly skunked at multiple Olympiads, could the US Sailing Team (USST) now under the direction of Olympic veteran Paul Cayard, be finally turning it around? If its performance at the 53rd French Olympic Week regatta in Hyères, France, where the team posted ...read more

P1480042

New York City’s Newest Fleet

120 children enrolled in Brooklyn Boatworks’ STEM and life skills-focused program launched their hand-built optimist prams on June 14 from Pier 2 in Brooklyn Bridge Park. The launch is the culmination of years of student work, with boats in process before the pandemic caused the ...read more

AdobeStock_197518370

Charter: Off the Beaten Path

So, you like to charter in the Caribbean with its warm waters, swaying palm trees, steady trade winds and strong rum drinks. What’s not to love? It can be easy, though, to get stuck in a rut when chartering year after year in the same place. Sure, the British Virgin Islands are ...read more