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R2AK on a Beachcat

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Buddy and I have been mulling over the idea of doing R2AK on a beach-cat or something similar. We come from a strong laser and skiff sailing background but haven't done much multihull sailing. 

Any shots in the dark as to what fast-ish sub 18-20 foot cats would be at least somewhat appropriate? Obviously appropriate is relative but the race has been done before(and successfully at that) on ARC 22's and other 16-22 foot cats. 

Regardless of the final boat choice, it will have to be modified substantially for the race(reefing, storage, sails etc...)

Initial thoughts are:

Tornado

Miracle 20

Hobie 20

Prindle 19

Supercat 19

Nacra 6.0

INTER 20

 

We don't really give a shit if anyone thinks the idea itself is a bad one(it probably is). 

 

Fire away!

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in that size bracket think inter 20 or any post 2008 F18.  you're going to want the extra volume.

 

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4 minutes ago, SCARECROW said:

in that size bracket think inter 20 or any post 2008 F18.  you're going to want the extra volume.

 

Kick up boards and rudders would also be good with all that debris in the water.

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Tripp and Trevor Burd did it on a modified cat their first year.  Switched to a tri last year and won it.  You could pick their brain.  

If you decide to do it and need some coaching on beach cats I am in the NW.

Ken

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I used to do some pretty hairy open ocean inter island passages and races on a SuperCat 19 and 20 and would recommend either. Brutally strong with nice rounded over decks and stout rudders and foils. There was one Memorial Day Race to St Croix from STT Yachtclub (35 miles with a Tradewind fetch all the way from Africa) that was epic. Within a mile of the start, the BIG beam seas and williwaws literally ate up a proa and a Prindle 18 and the whole way was like a 'Victory at Sea' opening clip. We just nipped a Tornado and then had to do the race back home a couple of days later. The two days of round the bouys day racing at STX Yacht Club were nothing compared to the RT. I did the first couple of days of the Worrell 1000 in a SuperTurbo'ed SuperCat 20 but it was too complex and too wide when sailing in and out through the surf. Oregon Inlet ate a couple of Prindle 19's on that race and a stock Tornado and wide beamed White Hurricane (20') did well. A NACRA 6.0 with absurdly wide hiking racks one that race. We lost our jumbo wing spar as did Randy Smyth on a really slick wingmasted custom cat. If a SuperCat 19 is available grab it for the R2AK and good luck. Some sort of hiking/sleeping cot rack would be in order. Hobie Sport 21 with racks and the small cuddy might be worth considering.

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Lots of good info here. There was a modified Inter 20 with wing racks that did well last year. Freeburd also had racks. I don't believe the Tornado that held (might still hold?) the Everglades Challenge record did, but they wore drysuits and that water is more forgiving than the R2AK. I can say that 750+ miles in a trapeze is a long, long way to go, especially unassisted, at night, in some of the most remote territory on earth. I can tell you that I've had the same thought and quickly realized that something with a cabin is the way to go.

One of the Burd brothers and I joked about single handing some C-board Nacra 17's to Alaska, but that would be dangerous at best and deadly at worst. The real reason for said joke is it costs more than some of the boats you mention are worth to get the thing home on the ferry, and its another reason the small trimarans work out as you can leisurely motor sail them home as weather permits.

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3 hours ago, Rasputin22 said:

The Glory Days of the Worrell 1000

Image result for worrell 1000

I see you had the perfect sponsor.........:)

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That was the next year after my ill-fated attempt. Rick Bliss getting tubed there. I've got a great story about Rick pulling a couple of bouncers off of me at the Awards after dinner party the years before. Yeah Appleton would have been a good sponsor for any year. 

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https://www.thebeachcats.com/classifieds/catamarans-for-sale/p15675-2005-nacra-f18.html

 

Like the look of this F18 and it's not too far from where I am. 

How would an F18 stack up against a tornado or other 20 foot cat?

I've heard of F18's with rack modifications? Doesn't seem like it would be too difficult of a modification?

 

Also this Nacra 6.0.. https://www.thebeachcats.com/classifieds/catamarans-for-sale/p14693-2000-nacra-6-0-na.html

 

thoughts?

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The original Nacra F18 is lowish on volume and the stock sail plan well outdated. From what I know they are reasonably quick with new sails. A modern F18 is very competitive with something like an Inter 20, we race them regularly and in lower wind strengths the Inter 20 is faster than the F18 but in double trap and above conditions it is very hard to match the new F18's which basically get up and plane away from the Inter 20. The Nacra 6.0 is a beast with dated rigging (no self tacker for example) and dated/difficult to procure hardware.

Of the boats currently on thebeachcats, this is really a good deal: https://www.thebeachcats.com/classifieds/catamarans-for-sale/p15705-2011-nacra-infusion-mkii-f18.html

A new Nacra Infusion Mk. 3 (same as the Mk. 2 but with the boards moved forward, convertible trunks and epoxy build) is ~$27k USD with sails and beach wheels but without a trailer, storage box etc., so $9k for essentially the same thing is quite a bargain if you ask me.

If you're asking me what boat I would take to Alaska, it would probably be the following:

1) F20c

2) Nacra Inter 20, as its forgiving to sail across a wide range of conditions and handles weight well.

3) Tornado Sport

4) Some flavor of modern F18, be it an Infusion, eXploder Scorpion, Cirrus R2 or Goodall C2. I would shy away from the older models due to lack of reserve buoyancy.

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You have to finish to be able to finish fast. Volume and simplicity over the most highly strung boat give the best chance of finishing and finishing fast. Skip a self tacking jib if it means giving up roller furling, maybe roller furled hooter/screacher or spin.  The ability to not have the boat super overloaded with racks/gear/food/water will make more of a difference in the final speed in the race compared to the the initial speed of the boats you listed or even compared to any super modern beach cat.

Any of the boats you listed would be good, probably not a more modern boat.  Make sure you have a spin or a big genaker, build modestly lightweight racks or have them made, insulate some of the tramp with a sleeping pad, eat like karl kruger did, use oars with somewhere that allows you to sail and row at the same time, practice in 30knots+.

 

 

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Agree with Morgan - the difference in raw performance will get eaten up by the weight needed to race in R2AK.  The I20 felt sluggish in race weight compared to our pre-race sailing, even when we were nearly out of water and food.  Racks, clothes, spare parts, electronics all add up (but they help finish, so not really optional).  And we were a lightish crew to begin with. 

Spinnaker is a big plus in some of the light downwind conditions that invariably appear despite a mostly upwind course in theory, so that may rule out most Miracle 20s and older designs on your list.  You can have roller furling and self tacking jib, so no need to choose between those.

Beware that some of the wider 10ft+ designs (Tornado, Supercat, Hobie 21) can be harder to right easily.  Tornado should be rightable so long as the mast is properly sealed.   Supercat has a releasable shroud system to help righting.  Hobie 21 is much harder to right from what I've heard, so I'd rule that out even though it is great in other regards (weight carrying capacity especially since designed for 3 people).

And get started early -- it takes time to learn all the reflexes for a powered up beach cat, even from a skiff background.  There are many real ways to get in trouble on a beachcat when the going gets tough.

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I disagree that a more modern boat would not be better. The original Nacra F18 and the Nacra 6.0 are low on hull volume compared with a modern F18. By modern, I mean Nacra Infusion (Mk.1 or 2) or Goodall C2 or newer; the newest designs like the Cirrus, Falcon and eXploder arguably have more volume than most 20 foot boats listed here! I suggest the volume for the extra weight carrying capacity needed with the gear requirements for the R2AK. Anyway, the Inter 20 is about the same volume as the Infusion and C2, maybe a touch higher and with additional waterline but also additional rig. The big advantage it may have have is the roller furling sail plan and ease of keeping it in the groove. The modern F18's are fast boats but a little harder to keep sailing fast than the Inter 20 as they are more tweaky and the rig more sensitive to tuning-not neccessarily a good thing for a non-stop distance race. For a first time cat sailor, the Inter 20 is a hard boat to beat and the price is usually right. The difficulty is they are getting on in years which means older parts that ar more prone to failure due to fatigue, and that is why I am I recommending an F18. You can rig one with roller furling jib and a reef. The Tornado Sport is more akin to an F18 in rigging layout and tweakiness, plus less available and more expensive.

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You can buy my Nacra17. Its in the right location.

I've done and won this race already and got somewhat further along in a plan to go for the single handed record in a modified version of this boat. Would be happy to share all this...if you buy the boat.

http://sailinganarchy.com/classifieds/show-ad/?id=3653

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You are getting some great information here.  I agree with Sam, go for something with volume and therefore survivability!

Coming from a primarily 20' background and doing more F18 stuff right now, my thoughts are that I would chose a 20' boat over the F18.  I sailed a Tornado in the FL300 2x and the GT300, the C2 feels very cramped in comparison, so trying to figure out where to put all of the gear is going to be a big question.  As much as I like the Tornado and for all of the strengths it has, the best boats (Marstrom) are Nomex cored.  They are more than durable enough to handle the sailing part of the race, but I would be worried about all the "what if's".  Kickup centerboards are great, but... will the hull survive beaching on rocks or hitting a log at speed?  The systems on those boats were also designed for course racing and need to be made more durable for distance racing, ask me how I know.

I'd be worried about potential structural problems with a H20 (bulkhead delam in front of main beam), lack of self tacking jib (that cable is a PITA!) and the need for a spinnaker.

N6.0 is a tank, but again with the damn cable for the jib, need for a spinnaker and the age of the fleet.  Same goes for a P19.

IMO, the choices are N20c, I-20 or modern F-18.  A better choice is what the Burds did, ARC 22 with wings.

Eagle makes a "sea going" beach cat, but they aren't widely available http://eagle-cat.com/

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I nominate an old P-Cat. 

 Image result for pacific catamaran

picpacificcat18ae.jpg

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2 hours ago, unShirley said:

I nominate an old P-Cat. 

 Image result for pacific catamaran

picpacificcat18ae.jpg

You beat me to it, very  seaworthy, much drier than any cat with tramps, no tendency to bury the bows, caries a load well and for a race like this where paddling will be called for you can stand on the cockpit sole and use a stand up paddleboard paddle much more effectively than on any other cat because you are standing at about the same level you would be on a paddleboard so one guy on each side and you could cover some miles. The rig is large but short so they handle big wind well but a taller rig would be better in light air. Of course they are all 45 to 60 years old  but with modern sails and equipment they could surprise many. The original Tornado is almost as old .

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6 hours ago, wlrottge said:

Coming from a primarily 20' background and doing more F18 stuff right now, my thoughts are that I would chose a 20' boat over the F18.  I sailed a Tornado in the FL300 2x and the GT300, the C2 feels very cramped in comparison, so trying to figure out where to put all of the gear is going to be a big question. 

...

IMO, the choices are N20c, I-20 or modern F-18.  A better choice is what the Burds did, ARC 22 with wings.

This.

We had looked at F-18s as well but in our budget range they were older (e.g. Capricorn).  The newer F18s definitely have a lot more volume and race competitively (or even better) vs. I-20 so they are more equivalent.  We figured an I-20 would be faster in the mostly light airs of the race, though they're more quickly overpowered, while F-18s are said to have better depower controls for 20kts+ so would have the edge if the conditions got gnarly (but we planned to pull the foot off the gas in that case).

Size wise, having a few extra feet of tramp space makes a difference if you're going to spend 7+ days more or less non-stop of them.  I didn't measure an F-18, but a Hobie 18 is ~6.8 ft from aft beam to front beam vs. ~8.3ft for an I-20.  So it was fairly roomy for us to lie down and sleep on the I-20, while still having space for our gear bags.  The wings helped make the boat feel a lot bigger too.

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"We figured an I-20 would be faster in the mostly light airs of the race, though they're more quickly overpowered, "

Just make sure you have a quick and easy reefing system.

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Tornado wouldn't be a bad choice.

  1. They're still fast.
  2. Pretty cheap
  3. kick-up boards and rudders
  4. nice wide platform with good stability 

There must be some old Beijing olympic boats out there. 

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Anything you take to the r2ak is a party, and the harder it is to get to the start gives you an even bigger high, but sailing with the chance to win is epic, it is adrenalin to the 10th power.  Racing 24 hours a day x 5 is "the Matrix"  

I hear you want to play,

Play to win

2019 could be the race of the century,  Dragon will be the boat to beat!

Cakewalk, the Gougeon/Gardiner, can meet the challenge.

My friend Dick Newick once told me, " second place is first place loser"downloadfile-1.thumb.jpg.38cbb02cbf06e7e50683a0ebd6637055.jpg

Second place is easy.

I will consider partners, even support Cakewalk,  but to win it is not easy

Stephen

R2akteamgoldenoldies

See Gougeon on fbpost-51040-0-22617900-1349881944_thumb.jpgpost-51040-032879200%201327941487_thumb.jpg

 

 

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what are the dimensions on that beauty and how does she handle rough water?

 

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11 minutes ago, mundt said:

what are the dimensions on that beauty and how does she handle rough water?

 

34x26, under 2000lbs, slices the water like a knife,

She was built around Gougeon's Adigeo, which was designed after Crowther's class c trimaran, but 600 pounds lighter.

I wouldn't cross oceans with her but would take her to the Farallons, and THE RACE TO ALASKA!post-51040-000189900%201328215418_thumb.jpg

 

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Yes, i could fix the downhaul

This was the second day we sailed her, tiny wake., so much fun.

cat1-575x350.jpg

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That is probably a better boat than a beach cat as it offers some protection from the elements.

On the beach cat front there is a G-Cat 6.1 over on thebeachcats.com that might be a good option with some racks. A little short on pointing ability but it has modern sails, is simple, they are robust and pretty fast.

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So correct me if I am wrong, but, it seems that sailors that raced a beach cat one year did not race it a second year. Specifically you got the Burgs racing Randy Miller's tri.  That represents two wining teams that did not race beach cats two years in a row.  Since those are serious racers, perhaps you should learn from their experience and skip the beach cat.  Go straight to the tri with some protection.  I would buy Cakewalk in a heartbeat if I had somewhere to keep it.

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Depends on what aims you are trying to achieve in R2AK. Statistically, to have a chance of winning:

a) Three years out of three, you must have 3 crew.

b) Two years out three, you must have cabin protection.

c) Three years out of three, you must get through Seymour Narrows first.

d) Three years out of three, winners were all fantastically well researched, prepared and sorted.

Three years out of three, you must also go non stop (a)). Elsie Piddock stopped the first year, but it was a tactical rest (b)), they knew they had a huge lead (c)) and also could see what was waiting for them around the corner in Johnstone Straits (d)).

Can a 2 man beach cat fit this profile?

 

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If you want a 2 man trimaran with some protection and light weight; look at a SeaRail 19.  Weighs in around 950 pounds (I know the website specs say 700 pounds, but I weighed mine and it is 950 or so).  Easily sailed single handed (so one can be tucked into the cabin while other drives).  Dimensions are 19' long by 15' wide but folds for trailering there and back.  So far it is about windspeed to weather (boatspeed, not VMG) and slightly higher than that downwind with spin (spin is very flat, 55% SMG). 

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Good call, even better three up, if the crew are like the ones on the promo below.....

Resting in the cabin could be interesting in heavy airs? Especially down wind? And can you both sleep down below if pitstopped some where?

Hypothetically though, if I wanted to do R2AK in a 2 man beach cat, I would be looking at racks, not traps and be able to rig a 2 man tent up in the middle somehow..... if only when not on the move. Plus “on watch” being able to pedal whilst sailing.....

EE623B0E-27CA-499A-8DCC-FCF882EE977E.jpeg

2A8EEA26-6F44-44A8-BF8A-61E406134132.jpeg

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There is room for barely one in the "cabin".  Seriously, not easy to even turn over.  If claustrophobe, don't go down there.  BUT, some protection/relief is better than most beach cats.  In heavy stuff you may want the weight outboard instead of in the cabin.  But R2AK isn't a race for folks looking to sip champagne, right?

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3 hours ago, Sidecar said:

Depends on what aims you are trying to achieve in R2AK. Statistically, to have a chance of winning:

a) Three years out of three, you must have 3 crew.

b) Two years out three, you must have cabin protection.

c) Three years out of three, you must get through Seymour Narrows first.

d) Three years out of three, winners were all fantastically well researched, prepared and sorted.

Three years out of three, you must also go non stop (a)). Elsie Piddock stopped the first year, but it was a tactical rest (b)), they knew they had a huge lead (c)) and also could see what was waiting for them around the corner in Johnstone Straits (d)).

Can a 2 man beach cat fit this profile?

 

Good points.  I agree beach cats have very low chances at winning overall -- you'd choose a beach cat for another challenge (fastest 2 person boat, fastest small boat, etc).  While in daysail conditions a beach cat will out-sail any of the past winners except the M32, the added weight of distance racing, plus (a) and (b) quickly cancel out and reverse the advantage a beach cat has vs. a bigger boat.  The added race weight alone is a small % of a bigger boat, but a much higher % of a beach cat, and we all know multihulls are very sensitive to weight... 

Interestingly, if you downsize to solo a beach cat, then you eliminate factors (a) and (b) and might have a pretty good chance against that pool of competitors.  Basically what Roger Mann did last year.   Though personally if I did ever try solo I think I'd find a F-boat, put on a radar and AIS, choose an offshore route and aim not to stop at all, taking cat naps Figaro-style.   Risky, but fast (and also a much bigger budget).  Got to make sure to have a mighty big alarm clock and not fall asleep and land onto some rocks though...

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48 minutes ago, galacticair said:

........Interestingly, if you downsize to solo a beach cat, then you eliminate factors (a) and (b) and might have a pretty good chance against that pool of competitors.  Basically what Roger Mann did last year.   Though personally if I did ever try solo I think I'd find a F-boat, put on a radar and AIS, choose an offshore route and aim not to stop at all, taking cat naps Figaro-style.   Risky, but fast (and also a much bigger budget).  Got to make sure to have a mighty big alarm clock and not fall asleep and land onto some rocks though...

There really is not much open water before Bella Bella. Plus a lot of shipping, logs and other competitors. You would have been well zombied out before then, you can go a hell of a long way doing 15 knots during a catnap........ More important I reckon is to get into a rhythm with the tides, and only take your rest when they are foul, regardless of the time of day..... especially in light conditions. And b) is always good if you can rig it up somehow.

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5 hours ago, MultiThom said:

There is room for barely one in the "cabin".  Seriously, not easy to even turn over.  If claustrophobe, don't go down there.  BUT, some protection/relief is better than most beach cats.  In heavy stuff you may want the weight outboard instead of in the cabin.  But R2AK isn't a race for folks looking to sip champagne, right?

Sounds like a good ride for a single handler then.... pity about losing the promo crew though.....

B98233B3-641B-464E-934F-3AAD8432D261.jpeg

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Frog at 6.5 x 7.5 metres, double luff airfoil main (2 reefs), D shaped, small area wing mast, overall boat light weight, 135 kgs, 2 bunks (cramped), can be pulled apart for transporting (beam and floats/foils swing fore and aft) - could be a good starter, no? Lives in Auckland though.

frognewfloats2 - Copy.jpg

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