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Out to Lunch Testimonial

Hi Jim

 The Catamaran is going well the business is slow to start (as expected). We have done 6 corporate Xmas parties and also New Years Eve all out of Docklands in Melbourne. We are now back down at Sorrento. We are mainly doing spectator boat work for the Laser worlds and 49er skiff world titles at Sorrento Sailing Club. It is a great viewing platform and also has inside to shelter from the wind.
We had a big day yesterday the 3rd  when we took out guests from the KPMG day at the Couta boat club. This is the biggest corporate event in Victoria with the captains of industry. It is also in the media etc.
We have always contributed our Couta boat but this year was too windy to race. Our cat was called in as the main feature. We had 36 persons on board and 2 ton of drinks and lobster, as we sailed towards Portsea at 5 knots, with the headsail only.

The boats getting easier to handle as I am mostly controlling it single handed. All the lines and halyards, reefing lines, sheets come back to the one electric winch next to the helm. This is quick to grab another line from the bank of clutches and press the button. Also I don’t have to move passengers out of the way to get to the other side. The main halyard also comes through this system and is up in about a minute as the auto pilot holds it head to wind. Most of the corporate parties I have the self tacking jib only as we sail down the Yarra at the 5knot speed limit.

The boat doesn’t seem too disadvantaged being over loaded it always has a lot of food and grog all the time any way. The 40hp Volvos can still keep the speed up only losing about 1 knot with all these passengers aboard. The stern sinks a lot with the step often under water as we are off loading, and I am not game to switch off the engines which have the exhausts well under.        

The steering system from Lewmar is fantastic, at first it was a bit stiff but now that I have oil instead of grease into the cables. The quadrants are very smooth with no binding up at any stage. The turn is 1 ¾  from lock to lock. The angle is a full 35deg from centre, this has as I imagined very important for me. I am mostly berthing at the jetty 3 to 4 times per day, there are usually other boats in the way at either end. Also always a current and wind pushing us back onto the jetty. I can helm hard over and make it go sideways without going forward. It would still be better with thrusters but this is still impressive, especially to the cat owners with out board motors.

The flat wide side decks are working well with the solid hand rails to grab hold of. Most of the passengers have never been on a boat and are not afraid to walk around. The anchor chain being concealed is not a problem for me to operate with passengers sitting above it. The saloon and the cockpit roof were able to shelter 26 passengers when it was raining. The walk through transom steps have been fantastic when we have people swimming with the seals off Sorrento as they did today.   

At the end of the day this is still a big boat, which is easy to handle by yourself. A bigger faster boat looks impressive and has more room but requires more crew than just one. You have all come up with a great product not fully realized until you start using the boat.  

Thank You

Darren Hart - Adventure Sails

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