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Thread: Advice in helping to choose please

  1. #1

    Default Advice in helping to choose please

    Hi All,

    I'm new here but need a little advice.

    My wife and I are looking to buy a cat for maybe 5 years circumnavigation. We've got a fair amount of experience of sailing monohulls, primarily in the Mediterranean, and got a few qualifications too so we're not novices (I'm at Yachtmaster level), though still of course learning...

    So, the choice is narrowed down to these. Given the prices, some we can afford new, some will be second hand as I mention below...

    Antares 44 - this is what started the bug. Looks built to take on the world, owners seem very loyal which must be a good thing, seems very well thought out. If we bought one of these it would maybe be 5 years old, subject to finding one. Plus shaft drive and skegged rudders are very attractive. I've not found one in Europe yet so not seen one in the flesh as it were...

    Lagoon 450 - this could be new. I'm sure it's strong, there's loads of space but the quality of fitting seems somewhat lacking. It's very nice but it doesn't capture my heart...my wife likes it though...

    Privilige Serie 5 (previously the 515) - the might be 2 or 3 years old. It's a lot of boat for the money, seems well designed and well finishes, good quality joinery. A great Master suite. Downside - the windows in the saloon are very small and my wife worries about that...and probably makes it difficult to spend a night watch largely in the saloon, unlike the others.

    Leopard 48 - this could be new. Looks better made than the Lagoon, loads of space. Probably a similar concept to the Lagoon. Not sure about that door at the front leading onto the front cockpit though...but maybe it's strong...Not sure about the looks either...

    So, anyone any experience of these or general observations? Anything I've missed? Whilst there's something nice about buying new, does it make sense? Or one a few years old with the snagging done and someone else taking the hit on depreciation? And of the others we've ruled out, I don't like FP, Outremer or Catana...

    Thanks guys and girls, I look forward to some help...It's be helpful if you could tell me which you'd choose if you were forced to make a call on the above...

  2. #2

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Antares 44 - Probably the best suited out of your list.
    Privilige 515 - This is an enormous vessel for just a couple. Consider a 435 or even a 495 if you really want big.
    Lagoon 450 / Leopard 48 - These are is specifically designed for comfortable charter. There are many shortfalls in the design of the rig, reefing, cockpit, dinghy stowage and many other issues that do not make these well suited to ocean crossings or heavy weather.

    Interested to know why you crossed FP, Outremer or Catana... off your list.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Thanks for the reply. I ruled out FP because I just didn't connect with it...it just felt like a big, not very well finished apartment (the Saba 50). Catana and Outremer I ruled out because I didn't want dagger boards and neither seemed to offer very good accommodation for the size.

    Is the Privilige 515 so big? It's only 12 inches longer than the 495 (Serie 4.9 now)? I liked the fact that the dinghy sat on chocks on back rather than hanging from davits which seems much more secure and gives more flexibility in having a more substantial tender. The extra space is attractive when thinking of living on it for a significant number of years too. What's the reputation of the Privilige in ocean crossings and heavy weather?
    Last edited by Stewart; 16th September 2015 at 07:42 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Worcester, U.K., Moraira, Spain
    Posts
    570

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    As a former owner of a Privilege 435 I'm rather biased in favour of Privileges of all shapes and sizes but I do have a bit of experience to back up my bias.

    We had our boat for over 10 years, spent several years in the Caribbean and my wife and I also did a circumnavigation. They are very strong boats and handle open oceans very well. We spent days on end in the Indian Ocean being hammered by big beam on seas and constant 30 - 40 knot winds (topping out at 55 knots around South Africa) and although we were uncomfortable it never felt unsafe. We were in the World ARC event and three of the four cats that completed the circumnavigation were Privilege 435/445s (same boat essentially, just different name). One of the Privs was hit by a ship, dismasted and holed at the waterline but successfully patched things up and motored over a thousand nm to safety.

    The 465/495 is also a great boat if you want even more space. Personally I'm not so keen on the 515 as I don't like the more exposed helm although, like you, the dinghy arrangements are attractive. I'm a bit surprised at your comments about the saloon windows, the usual complaints about Privileges is the large sloping windows allowing too much heat in, not about them being small. Personally, I don't think you can really keep watch from inside the saloon from any boat as you just lose too much vision through any plastic windows. We used to sit in the saloon in just about any conditions but with an egg timer alarm clock to remind us to go outside every 15 minutes to have a proper look around.

    I have good contacts at Privilege for both new and used boats if you want them.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Hi Mike,

    Thanks for the feedback. The comments on the windows in the Privilige 515 only related to that model...it has fairly vertical windows which are quite shallow. I know the 495 has very large sloping windows...and I can imagine the problems in a hot sun.

    It's good to hear feedback from a former owner though, thanks :-)

  6. #6

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Hi Peter,

    Could you elaborate on the shortfalls on the Leopard and Lagoon please?

    Thanks

    Stewart

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Worcester, U.K., Moraira, Spain
    Posts
    570

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewart View Post
    Hi Mike,

    Thanks for the feedback. The comments on the windows in the Privilige 515 only related to that model...it has fairly vertical windows which are quite shallow. I know the 495 has very large sloping windows...and I can imagine the problems in a hot sun.

    It's good to hear feedback from a former owner though, thanks :-)
    You are welcome. Hadn't spotted that the windows on a 515 are significantly different. Haven't been aboard a 515, only a 745 from the later boats and I didn't spot much that was wrong with that apart from the cost!

    If you have some spare time early October it would be worth you getting down to the South of France to this show... http://www.lesoccasionsdumulticoque.com/en/ . Big, secon dhand cat show, lots of Catanas of course as Canet is their home but a good selection of other boats as well.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Quite simply, Lagoons are built to a price, not a standard.The older ones (380 and 410) were the only ones suitable for offshore work. I have seen some quite late model Lagoons with cracks in bulkheads etc.

    Leopards are ok. Some of the earlier 48s had structural issues, and the latest ones seem to be entirely finished with stick on plastic veneer. I also don't like the open upstairs galley - a lot of potential to be tossed across the saloon.

    The Leopard 46 is a reasonably good boat, if you can get a lightly used one. The other beef with Leopard ( and some other manufacturers) is the use of balsa cores, which I consider entirely inappropriate for production line construction.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Fremantle, Western Australia
    Posts
    292

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    G'day Stewie,
    Short list of boats you have. But if you've researched your boats and thats what you've come up with, I'd have to say the Privilege. I looked at a lot of these around the globe before buying what we have. I believe there are some 453 (?) in Europe with centre boards inside their keel, would be a good advantage. Don't know if it was custom done or factory done, but sounded like a good idea. We have a 50ft and my wife and I handle it no problem, so don't let the size put you off, only the size of your budget. Don't buy the biggest thing your budget can afford. Buy the biggest thing your budget can maintain for 5 years. As after 5 years you will want to return to those islands you really fell in love with as in our case. We've done a lot of monohull sailing before getting a cat and unless something changes drastically, we will keep sailing a cat. Level sailing at 10 knots at 60o in 15-16kn of wind is normal. And beside race boats, I've never been able to achieve this speed in a monohull. But have a look around, you'll get some good second hand Privileges with all the work done. You'll pay a little more, but much less than new.
    L&N

  10. #10

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewart View Post
    Hi All,

    Anything I've missed?
    Maybe.
    A Cruiser 60 might be suitable. The safe, simple, low maintenance rig (never any need to go on the foredeck, no rigging to worry about), internal/external steering, 23'/7m tender and 300mm/12" draft are all things you won't get on the cats.
    60' is more comfortable, faster and safer than 45, and as it is lighter and easier to build, cheaper. Both to build and to maintain.
    See http://harryproa.com/?portfolio=harryproa-cruiser-60

    rob

  11. #11

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Not sure how this fits your budget but have you considered an Atlantic 47 Mastfoil? Chris White has some very interesting designs. The front cockpit and the twin mast foil setup allows for easy shorthanded sailing. Good visibility with big windows, the interior helm station are positives. For you, the dingy davits and center boards might be a turn off.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Stewart,

    I see you haven't posted anything on these forums since Sept 16, 2015. Did you ultimately purchase a cat? If so, which one and why?

    -Pat

  13. #13

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    If you're still looking, a friends 2014 built Privilege Series 5 is on the market. Lovely boat...

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    St. Petersburg FL
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    A very late reply, but the question is a great one. You can't go wrong with Antares or Privilege for blue water. They are solidly built to take almost anything; but finances are an issue for most, as is availability. Lagoons and Leopards are more plentiful, and afford the option of buying a newer boat for the same money. In considering a blue water cruiser, sea trials of prospective yachts are a good idea. Some object to Leopards' below-the-waterline balsa cores, which seem like an inherently bad idea; however, given the large numbers of Leopards in charter, it hasn't seemed to be issue. I've sailed the 39 and 46 Leopards, and they seem solidly built and blue water capable IMHO.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Advice in helping to choose please

    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Man View Post
    A very late reply, but the question is a great one. You can't go wrong with Antares or Privilege for blue water. They are solidly built to take almost anything; but finances are an issue for most, as is availability. Lagoons and Leopards are more plentiful, and afford the option of buying a newer boat for the same money. In considering a blue water cruiser, sea trials of prospective yachts are a good idea. Some object to Leopards' below-the-waterline balsa cores, which seem like an inherently bad idea; however, given the large numbers of Leopards in charter, it hasn't seemed to be issue. I've sailed the 39 and 46 Leopards, and they seem solidly built and blue water capable IMHO.
    Funny, when I think of Leopards and how plentiful they are in charters I often start thinking about how many of these chartered Leopards are doing and blue water crossing.

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