The boat

This is a sister ship of our S/V «Vega», and she will be launched on the 26. of May, 2017. Foto: Photothèque Lagoon – Nicolas Claris

S/V «Vega»

Is a Lagoon 42, built by the well renowned and experienced Lagoon yard based in La Rochelle on France’s atlantic coast. She is scheduled to be launched on the 26. of may, 2017, and she will formally be ours on the 6. of june. She is named after the lovely island on the coast of Helgeland, Norway, where Guri was raised as a kid. However we consider Sømna in Helgeland to be her home port. This will be duly marked on her hulls.

Her vital measurements

This lovely lady is a beamy catamaran with a beam/length ratio of about 59%. This makes her a stable living platform, especially in a rolly anchorage. We might have wished for more bridgedeck clearance, but we have not sailed her much yet so we will get back on the issue of bridgedeck slamming. Here are some of the numbers;

Length: 12,92 m
Beam: 7,68 m
Draft: 1,26 m (fully laden)
Mast height: 20,60 m
Empty displacement: 12 104 kg
Cat A max load: 5 150 kg
Fuel capacity: 600 liters
Fresh water capacity: 600 liters (water maker cap; 65 l/hr)

Sails and rigging

She carries a bermuda cutter rig, or I suppose you could call it a modified cutter rig as she doesn’t have two permanent forestays. But you could fly two different foresails at the same time if you were so inclined. In our setup however we will most likely be using this capacity to swiftly shift to the best sailplan.

Her mainsail is also an interesting development. The mast has been repositioned and moved aft quite a bit. The result is of course a larger fore triangle and a greater choice of headsails, but pitching is also reduced. The mast length has been increased, and the mainsail boom has been shortened. This results is a high aspect ratio wing which gives you more lift (read propulsion) yet an easier to handle mainsail. Here are some more numbers;

Self tacking jib:  35 sq.m.
Roller furling gennaker:  90 sq.m.
Symmetrical spinnaker w/ sock: 130 sq.m.
Square top mainsail:  59 sq.m.

The pros and cons of cats:

You might surmise that we shall discuss our feline friends at this point, but I assure you we are still talking about sailboats. Given our choice of vessel, you will also not be surprised that our list of pros is longer than the list of cons;

PROS

  • Cats don’t heel!
    • This is a very important safety aspect. For long journeys fatigue is the killer, causing sloppy handling, poor decision making and even man over board situations. It is a well documented fact that a non-heeling environment is far more conducive to provide a well rested crew.
  • Cats don’t sink!
    • The fact that cats are unballasted and virtually unsinkable is another crucial safety aspect in catastrophic situations. All your supplies and gadgets are in the boat, and it is very nice to not have to watch your boat sink into the blue fathoms carrying all your gear along with it! To stay with your boat in case of an accident is perhaps the most important single action to save yourself and your crew, should shit hit the proverbial fan!
    • Should you hit something in the sea that puts a hole in one of your hulls, you will be able to remedy the situation in a calm peace of mind. Why? Because you know that you have another hull that has not been holed!
  • Cat redundancy!
    • Two of everything is good! Especially in far corners of the world. Pillage one engine for parts to have at least one engine running, if you run out of spares!
    • Two low aspect ratio rudders! Frankly it scares me when I walk around on boat shows, watching high performance monohulls with their underwater, slim, high aspect ratio appendages!! Fully cantilevered rudders of that shape will break, clean off! Far better to have two fat rudders that are not subject to such shearing forces. You can steer your cat on a single rudder, or even rudderless as long as both your engines are running.
    • Two engines many meters apart makes for positive and easy maneuvering in port. You can avoid a high maintenance, power hungry device called a bow thruster.
  • Cats have shallow draft!
    • This is quite simply a good thing!
  • Cats are spacious and stable!
    • The living area provided is fantastic! When designed by a good naval architect the flow of life on board is nearly effortless. Great if the boat is your home!
    • Functionality and storage, important aspects for a long term cruiser. Easy handling of your dinghy. Room for your sails and fenders and stuff and stuff…
    • They don’t roll at anchor!
  • Beach your cat!
    • Should you be in the above mentioned far corner, you may be able to beach your cat at high tide. This will give you access to your underwater hull for repair and maintenance at low tide… if you are in a pinch.
  • Cats are cool!
    • That is of course a very subjective opinion! Some people just like dogs better!

To be continued….