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The Cruising Multihull Paperback – September 22, 1996
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Crammed with useful information and sane advice.''
Addresses the newcomer as well as the seasoned multihull sailor. . .the best book written to date.''
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Top Customer Reviews
Yes, the book was written some time ago but the physics behind multihulls is the same now as it was in the beginning. Nor have the construction materials changed appreciably in the last 15 years. We still use the same glass, foam, wood, carbon, epoxy and polyester as we did in the mid '80's.
In fact some of the best cruising multihulls were built 20 years ago and some of the worst are built today. There has been evolution of course but much of it has been superficial. We still see lots of catamarans with little or no underwing clearance that violently pound their way across the bay, or worse the ocean. EVERYONE who knows ANYTHING about catamarans knows not to do this- but they still do it. I went to great lengths to point out this problem in the book. Maybe it has helped a few people avoid making a huge mistake in their boat selection.
The production boat appendix in the book (my publisher insisted upon it) is indeed useless as it is long out of date. However the sections on offshore safey and design features are still useful. But anyone who wants to write a current version is welcome. I'm busy designing boats and don't have the time.
Additional info is available at [...]
The author covers a good deal of ground in his book and I particularly liked his comparisons between the safety records of monohulls and multihulls. In many cases there aren't accurate figures but he worked with what was available to show that multihulls are no more dangerous than monohulls - in fact the reverse. And with the major danger that exists - capsize - he devotes a large amount of space to how to prepare for capsize, how to deal with it etc. This was a helpful, if slightly daunting, section with a lot of common sense. Yes, multihulls capsize but they don't sink and you can survive in one for quite a while if well prepared. And they don't capsize THAT often.
He also gave a significant amount of space to multihull designs, although again I think some of this information was a little out of date (an expected problem with an older book). The author definitely has his own opinions about what's good and what isn't and he speaks from the position of someone who likes to sail fast rather than potter about on a cruise (although a lot of other multihull owners, I imagine, prefer the relaxed cruising). He has designed a couple of boats himself and I found myself rather irritated at how often he showed us examples of his boats as proof of various statements about design - I felt he sometimes had a rather one-track mind about boat building.Read more ›
The book is a bit dated and could stand a re-write to bring it up to modern standards, but I still give it a 5 for the excellent coverage of the material presented. I'd like to see some discussion of the idea of placing two masts, one in each hull discussed. I'd also like to hear his opinions of the Wylie Cat monohull flexible masts.
I'd also like to see more discussion of his own designs and his performance competitor the Gunboat series of catamarans.
Finally, I'd like to see more analysis of the various production catamarans compared to each other and mono-hulls in various wind conditions, and citations of the situations where mono-hulls perform better--for example sailing upwind is less than 10 knots of wind.
Basically, I feel Catamaran design still has a way to go in the area of rig design, while the use of high tech composites is 95% perfected.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good information on the design and layout considerations for multihull cruisers. The sea hasn't changed much and neither has the wind, so the information here is still of value. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Peter
Just back from an ASA class, this book surpassed their multihull text!Published 10 months ago by B De Gregorio
Great book on multihulls. I have learned a lot. i am half way thru the book. Very glaf i purchased this book. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Randy Johnson
For multihull sailors this has some excellent food for thought. Chris White's analysis of roll moment of inertia & sea anchors are worth the price alone. And there's so much more.Published 19 months ago by Louis Liberatore
I call this my 'Bible' for catamarans. It is the only book I had back in the 90's to design and build my first catamaran.Published 22 months ago by Philip F Stone
Highly recommend to anyone venturing into multi-hull sailing. By now, most of information is available from many places, but it is still an excellent source of concentrated data.Published on January 2, 2014 by leont
highly recommend this book. Yes it is a bit dated. I cant remember what I paid, maybe 15 dollars new, and for that price was a very good book. Read morePublished on January 29, 2013 by Nicholas Peter Evans
Although there is some helpful basic info about multihulls, this book was a big disappointment to me because it hasn't been updated. Read morePublished on November 9, 2010 by Ladonna Thomas