SAIL's Best Boats 2014: Atlantic 47

Although huge, full-roached mainsails have been the rule on most catamarans for years now, in real life we all know that many cruising-cat sailors don’t ever use them because they can be so hard to handle.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Although huge, full-roached mainsails have been the rule on most catamarans for years now, in real life we all know that many cruising-cat sailors don’t ever use them because they can be so hard to handle. A number of designers have responded to this fact in incremental ways—for example, by reducing mainsail size or specifying in-mast furling. But now veteran multihull designer Chris White has solved the problem completely by taking the bold step of eliminating the mainsail altogether.

Atlantic47-600x_0

The revolutionary MastFoil rig on his new Atlantic 47 features a pair of self-tacking jibs in front of a pair of fully rotating wing-masts with trailing flaps. The result is a sailplan that is easier to handle and much more versatile than a conventional rig, yet performs well enough to keep speed-conscious sailors smiling. Better still, unlike many alternative rigs, the MastFoil rig is both distinctive and attractive.

The Atlantic 47 itself is the latest iteration in White’s renowned series of performance cruising cats and features a refined, very livable interior and a forward working cockpit—a concept pioneered by White that has since been borrowed by a number of others. The boat is built to exacting standards by Alwoplast in Chile, with vacuum-bagged epoxy/vinylester components cored with PVC foam. The masts and their foils are carbon fiber, and all interior furniture parts are cored to further reduce weight. Different underwater foil configurations can be specified, but our judges were intrigued by the new fin keels with trailing flaps installed on the boat we inspected at the Annapolis show in October. All in all, the boat and its rig represent the sort of forward thinking and commitment to quality that our judges felt demanded recognition.
chriswhitedesigns.com

Related

Radome

Ask SAIL: Some Random TLC

Q: I recently removed my radar’s white radome, which covers the internal rotating antenna. I gave the radome a light sandblasting to clear it of years of grime and discoloring. Should I paint it, too? — B. Anderson, Aberdeen, MD GORDON WEST REPLIES Stop! First, make sure the ...read more

L42-Sea-Trails-3728

Boat Review: Leopard 42

Sticking with its proven design formula, but also cherry-picking popular features from its recent models, Leopard Catamarans has launched a “best of” package with this new boat that sold nearly 30 units before hull #1 even touched water. Like a greatest hits album, the Leopard ...read more

01-LEAD-Cut8

Know how: Reinforcing Engine Stringers

If I were to ask, “What are the top five parts of the engine you want to be able to easily access?” How would you respond? Would it be the dipstick? The overflow coolant? I’d wager the raw water pump and its impeller would also make the list. Am I right? The reason we want to be ...read more

Sail-VOE-4-a

Experience: Under the Eyes of the Bar Bunch

Sitting quietly at the bar of a local yacht club, I gaze out over a rambunctious Lake Michigan on a sunny but blustery spring afternoon. I am enjoying watching a small sloop approaching the marina and recognize it as belonging to one of our newest members. “Pretty little thing. ...read more

01-LEAD-Bocas_Marina2

Cruising: Hurricane Heaven

As I write this, another hurricane season has passed. In hundreds of harbors and marinas, sailors are breathing a sigh of relief. I know the feeling since I rode out eight spinners aboard my sturdy 30-footer. I can recall the precise moment when I said, “No more!” It was in ...read more

J45-Podcast-vert-600x-02

Point of SAIL: J/Boats Inc. President Jeff Johnstone

In this episode of Point of SAIL, sponsored by West System Epoxy, Principal Editor Adam Cort talks with Jeff Johnstone, president of J/Boats Inc., the company that has brought the world such iconic designs as the J/24, the J/105 and the J/22, to name a few. In their ...read more

100719BTSC-9304

Boat Review: Catalina 545

Catalina has long been the largest All-American family cruiser company, building what sailors might call “standard” boats. Moving up from the popular 30ft to 45ft sizes puts the company into “yacht” territory, and the new Catalina 545, winner of the SAIL magazine 2020 Best Boats ...read more

01-LEAD-Rosie-G-under-bag

Portrait of a Boatbuilder

A couple of winters ago, I set a new course for my life by following my passions and interests. This in turn led me to boatbuilding. The reason why is I simply needed a change after working in a retail kayak shop a number of years. It was a great job that allowed me to develop ...read more