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Thread: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

  1. #1
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    Default Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    I'm curious to hear from anybody who has seen the new Bali line of catamarans from Catana. My wife and I find the 4.3 very intriguing with the hard enclosure around the cockpit instead of the usual canvas enclosures. I'm also interested in any opinions on build quality - are the Bali's built as well as their parent Catanas? Based on their design and target market, I wouldn't expect that the Bali's will sail as well as the Catanas of similar size, but hopefully they will prove to be a bit better performance-wise than the other production cats.

    Hopefully they will make it to the 2015 Annapolis boat show.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Just looking at the specs I suspect performance will be dull at best, but it really depends on what you intend to use the boat for. Looks like it would make a good charter boat.

    A fixed bimini certainly wins over canvas for long term living but can't see any real advantage to rigid enclosures, unless you plan to use the boat in very cold areas but then the exposed fly-bridge would be completely unsuitable.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Interesting designs that are clearly oriented towards the charter market. Does anyone except overcrowded charter parties actually need that much exterior lounging space? In the result, the bridgedeck is certainly quite long which can, of course, contribute to pounding and hobbyhorsing (although the design bridgedeck clearance at least appears to be reasonable). On the smallest of the trio, the enclosable aft lounging area is actually the 'saloon' as there is no interior table/settee. When closed in, I have serious concerns about the solidity of such large glass panels for offhsore use. The solid foredeck? Something that went out of vogue for good reason, IMO. Apart from increased weight in the ends, it also increases the risk of pitchpoling should one bury the bows. Of course, none of these design compromises will matter to charter parties who will typically be sailing short distances, in relatively protected waters and relatively benign conditions.

    Brad
    Last edited by Southern Star; 27th January 2015 at 07:33 PM. Reason: sp

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Star View Post
    The solid foredeck? Something that went out of vogue for good reason, IMO.
    I agree, Brad. When I first saw that "feature" my flabber was completely gasted. At least they're calling it Bali (by Catana) and not a Catana....

    2 Hulls Dave

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Yes and I suspect the different branding was deliberately done so as not to undermine the reputation that Catana has developed for building high-quality, well-performing cats intended for offshore passage making. Still, I suppose one can't blame them for attempting to get a good-sized slice of the charter market!

    Brad

  6. #6

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    I have recently sailed a trial with hull #1 of the 4.5 and it was quite enjoyable. This boat have loads of space and storage and the current ownes really moved their full house contents into it. The quality of build was in par with the Catanas and there were pretty neat design ideas. (I must say i liked the idea of the residential AA+ energy efficiency side by side fridge as it provides planty of storage with ice and chilled water and all it takes is one additional small inverter instaed of the complexity of water chilled chillers .
    I have tested the boat at 12-15 knots and though it is not performance oriented it is certainly not a slow one. The self tacking gib is very convenient when going upwind and the boat held nicely at 40-45 degrees upwind and maintained on average 50-60% of TWS. Pacement of stoppers and winches at the helm could be improved but maybe it was because this is hull #1. The NANI engines look a bit simple, though after having researched a bit, it is probably the boat designer philosophy thus providing one of the most common industrial / agricultural engines (kubota), which will probaly secure cheap availability of parts and labor everywhere. I am suspicious with the use of hard bow decks instead of nets and i hope that together with the front cockpit there are sufficient means to evacuate water in rogue weather.
    Fully speced it was about 550,000 euro so it is a bit more than the Helia 44, Lagoone 450 and Leopard 44 All and all it seems like a worthy live aboard bluewater boat as well as for charter.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Quote Originally Posted by udyy View Post
    This boat have loads of space and storage and the current ownes really moved their full house contents into it.
    uggh

  8. #8

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Are you looking to buy a charter boat or a boat for your own use? The Bali looks to have been set up as a direct competitor to the latest Lagoon Range which are selling very well as charter boats. Comfortable, although somewhat dull, living in one location a la charter boat but this is not the sort of boat you would want to cross oceans on.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    It is a matter of personal objectives. The current Bali owner, just retired with his wife and young kid. He is a very experienced cat sailor mostly on Outremer but his choice together with his wife's was the Bali as a cruiser and family live aboard boat. For me it seems I can be happy on many cats. Each have its own kicks.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    I saw one at the Sydney Boat Show. The boat had some good ideas and plenty of room, but I didn't like the solid foredecks or the very exposed helm position (flybridge version). As others have noted, this cat is very much aimed at the charter market where performance isn't so important.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Seems very heavy - the 43ft is 11tonnes light, and 14.25 max! As had been said - looks great for the charter market and perhaps gentle trade-wind sailing, but I don't fancy much upwind work...

    Rick

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    So, I got to see the Bali 4.3 in Annapolis today and must say the boat definitely seems to be designed for the charter market. The layout is ideal for a week in the islands. However, build quality was very poor imho. It's been some time since I have seen such poor workmanship on a brand new boat. Folding table hinges not seated right, already showing signs of rust. Bracket plates on the hard top over the cockpit missing a bolt and caulked so poorly there were already gaps showing. Interior fittings mismatched and a head that had massive amounts of poorly installed caulk as well. Also, the overhangs on the saloon roof by the windows flexed when even the slightest pressure was placed on them. Lots of other signs of workmanship where the technician didn't care or wasn't given time to do their job well (e.g. lots of examples of parts that were not cleaned up or misfitted.)

    I can only imagine what shape these boats will be in when they come out of a five year charter program. These boats definitely look like they are built to a price point to be competitive with the FP, Lagoon and Leopard offerings. I noticed similar build issues with a Nautitech Open 40 we chartered earlier this year. While I personally like where the designers have taken the midsize cats, build quality is definitely not keeping up with the designs.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Quote Originally Posted by indimini View Post
    So, I got to see the Bali 4.3 in Annapolis today and must say the boat definitely seems to be designed for the charter market. The layout is ideal for a week in the islands. However, build quality was very poor imho. It's been some time since I have seen such poor workmanship on a brand new boat. Folding table hinges not seated right, already showing signs of rust. Bracket plates on the hard top over the cockpit missing a bolt and caulked so poorly there were already gaps showing. Interior fittings mismatched and a head that had massive amounts of poorly installed caulk as well. Also, the overhangs on the saloon roof by the windows flexed when even the slightest pressure was placed on them. Lots of other signs of workmanship where the technician didn't care or wasn't given time to do their job well (e.g. lots of examples of parts that were not cleaned up or misfitted.)

    I can only imagine what shape these boats will be in when they come out of a five year charter program. These boats definitely look like they are built to a price point to be competitive with the FP, Lagoon and Leopard offerings. I noticed similar build issues with a Nautitech Open 40 we chartered earlier this year. While I personally like where the designers have taken the midsize cats, build quality is definitely not keeping up with the designs.
    Hi. I'd be interested to know what your opinions are on the N40? Regards, Jon.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Hi Jon,

    I had mixed opinions on the Open 40. Sailing performance was good and I actually really liked the helm positions. Where I had issues with the boat were focused more on some of the design features and build quality. Ventilation in the aft cabins was poor to say the least with no overhead opening hatch. The ventilation forward by the galley was also very limited. Both of these issues just made things a bit uncomfortable in a warm/hot climate. It was okay for a week, but nothing I would want to live with long-term. RE: build quality, like on the Bali, there were places where the workmanship was lower than desired. As a case in point, the aft port cleat was not properly backed causing the entire aft wall by the port helm station to noticeably flex while at the dock. There was a heavy reliance on caulk to fill gaps in parts not fitted particularly well.

    I did not get a chance to tour the Bavaria branded Open 40 in Annapolis, but have heard they had made changes from the original design so some of these concerns may have been addressed.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Udyy,

    I'm currently looking into buying a Bali 4.5. I tried the Outermer 45 and would really like to talk to your freind whom you are referring to above as an experienced cat sailor mostly on Outremer. Can you put me in contact with him please.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    Hello,

    Has someone tested or bought a Bali 4.1 or 4.3? Can you share the experience?

  17. #17

    Default Re: Bali Catamarans - any early opinions?

    See my previous comments.
    I have since been on one (not at a boat show) and what i saw would back up my previous opinion.
    Build quality IMO is also poor.
    Depends entirely on what you intend to use it for.

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