Catamaran Trailer-Sailing

The best piece of boat-buying advice I received was this: buy the boat that suits your present needs, not the boat you dream you will need. We keep our big-boat desires in check by chartering in the Caribbean and New Zealand, but a trailer-sailer suits most of my needs.
Author:
Publish date:
trailercat

The best piece of boat-buying advice I received was this: buy the boat that suits your present needs, not the boat you dream you will need. We keep our big-boat desires in check by chartering in the Caribbean and New Zealand, but a trailer-sailer suits most of my needs. I don’t like boats that heel a lot, and shallow-draft trailer-sailers are notorious for that, so I looked for a multihull. Eventually I found Oz Goin’ Sailing, a Little Barrier Sprinter 20ft trailer-sailer that I keep in a slip on Lake St. Clare, Michigan, and trailer for a week once or twice a summer. 

Weighing 2,400lb with the trailer, and drawing less than a foot, Oz Goin’ Sailing is easy to trailer and launch. The two hulls make her very stable. It’s easy to handle the loads on the halyards and sheets, and even with my gimpy back I can raise the 10lb Rocna anchor plus its chain. The Sprinter has a full-size rectangular bed between the hulls. Like all small boats, the downsides include tight accommodations and lack of stowage. Oh well, you can’t have it all...

Last year we towed her nine hours from Detroit up to Lake Michigan’s North Channel and spent a happy week exploring, sleeping aboard each night. Cruising on such a small boat is like camping. In the mornings we roll up the bed and use the space for gear. Then at night, we put the gear in the cockpit to free up the space for the bed, slide in the screens to keep the mosquitoes out, and flip on the fan.

Our 5hp Honda pushes us at 6 knots at ¾ throttle and uses a gallon of gas every two hours. Under sail, we’ve seen speeds of 8.5 knots. 

Am I happy to have the flexibility to trailer to great nearby sailing areas for short trips? You bet! Is the boat fun for day sails? A blast! Would I like a bigger boat? I would love the space, but not the weight or maintenance. Will I still charter? Absolutely. Maybe you can have it all... 

Photo courtesy of Neil Blavin

Related

MHS-GMR_3549

New Multihulls 2018

Farrier F-22 New Zealander Ian Farrier ushered in a new genre of sailing with his folding-ama trailerable trimarans, the best-known of which are the Corsair designs. Farrier’s last project before he passed away last year was this sweet little tri. Available in three versions, ...read more

shutterstock_373701682

Cruising: Island Comeback

The U.S. Virgins Islands have surged back from the devastation of the 2017 hurricanes, with new infrastructure plans that will benefit charterers and cruisers alike. After hurricanes Irma and Maria roared through the Leeward Islands in September 2017, it was impossible to ...read more

albintoilet

Gear: Albin Pump Marine Toilet

Head Start Is there room for a new marine toilet? Albin Pump Marine thinks so, having just introduced its line of Swedish-built heads—ranging from compact to full-size models—to the American market. The toilets feature vitreous porcelain bowls and either wooden or thermoplastic ...read more

07n_45R2699

Multihull Sailor: Classic Cats

If you’re looking for a decent sub-40ft cruising cat, you have few choices when it comes to new-boat offerings. It is a well-known fact that the multihull market has taken off in a way very few could have predicted. Despite Hurricane Irma’s recent destruction of a large part of ...read more

TOTW_PromoSite

SAIL's Tip of the Week

Presented by Vetus-Maxwell. Got a tip? Send it to sailmail@sailmagazine.com Thanks a bunch  This scene is very calm and seamanlike. No frantic rope throwing or shouting. As he passes the line to the gent on the dock, the crew on the boat says, quietly and clearly, “Would you ...read more

mcarthy-and-mouse

Experience: McCarthy and the Mouse

Sitting at the helm in a light breeze, my arms crusted with a fine rime of salt, my skin so dry I’d lost my fingerprints, I heard a clatter and a curse from below. There were only three of us a thousand miles from shore and only one on watch at a time. Usually, the off watch lay ...read more