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Hello All,
I am looking at a Tangaroa Mk4 or Narai Mk4 build to launch in Lake Erie and eventually sail to the Atlantic but am not finding any lifts that can handle cats here around Cleveland. Are there any alternative ways to launch? I began with interest in a Tiki 30, which would have been much easier but I’m concerned it would feel a bit small on longer trips.

Thanks for any thoughts!

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It’s usually possible to arrange for a crane. Our Pahi 42 fits in the local boatyard’s lift with a few inches to spare. Bigger cats are routinely lifted in and out with a crane. Our Pahi came with a set of straps that the previous owner used when needed. 

This is actually a difficult problem seldom discussed...

I launched my boat at Fosdyke on the Welland Lincs UK. There was 3"" each side of her in the bay she was launched out of there from the slings by their brilliant boatbuilder and yard manager Greg.

My current boatyard won't lift my boat (beam 5.33 +),  not because of the weight,  but because they have narrow areas for boat storage which don't fit in with catamaran sizes.

Where I am on the Dart, no one wants to know about lifting my boat, so have had to neap her for work (cheap, but bad on the knees).

This winter I wanted her out for a couple of months. They are all making so much money here from luxury boats I don't think I would like to pay the fees. The Exe canal is a possibility for winter but a way to work on the boat.

So it's neaping on the neighbouring beach and avoiding the storms which will continue to increase in the future, probably.

Generally, these things need to be taken into account when you have a widebeam cat. Personally, I don't want any other kind of boat, but it's difficult and expensive.

Breaking/re- forming the boat from the hulls is not a practical option to avoid this.

Thanks Robert. In my asking around at the marinas and yacht clubs in Cleveland I haven’t found any yet but I’m looking. You are around Boston? I’m looking for cat owners around Cleveland for advice. I haven’t seen any around.


Robert said:

It’s usually possible to arrange for a crane. Our Pahi 42 fits in the local boatyard’s lift with a few inches to spare. Bigger cats are routinely lifted in and out with a crane. Our Pahi came with a set of straps that the previous owner used when needed. 


Thanks Ian :) I’ve found a boat ramp or two that would be wide enough by a foot or two depending on the beam I choose but Tangaraos and Tiki 38’s don’t seem launchable from any sort of trailer. As I’m on a lake (Lake Erie) I can’t put something together on a beach and use tides….

The fact that we have winters here also mean it would need to come out as well…hmmm, problems ;)


Ian R said:

This is actually a difficult problem seldom discussed...

I launched my boat at Fosdyke on the Welland Lincs UK. There was 3"" each side of her in the bay she was launched out of there from the slings by their brilliant boatbuilder and yard manager Greg.

My current boatyard won't lift my boat (beam 5.33 +),  not because of the weight,  but because they have narrow areas for boat storage which don't fit in with catamaran sizes.

Where I am on the Dart, no one wants to know about lifting my boat, so have had to neap her for work (cheap, but bad on the knees).

This winter I wanted her out for a couple of months. They are all making so much money here from luxury boats I don't think I would like to pay the fees. The Exe canal is a possibility for winter but a way to work on the boat.

So it's neaping on the neighbouring beach and avoiding the storms which will continue to increase in the future, probably.

Generally, these things need to be taken into account when you have a widebeam cat. Personally, I don't want any other kind of boat, but it's difficult and expensive.

Breaking/re- forming the boat from the hulls is not a practical option to avoid this.

interesting information

I’m also a Great Lakes sailor (for now! :p) thinking about building a Wharram design. This is likely too far for your purposes, but I’ve read that Larsen Marine in Waukegan, on the west side of Lake Michigan, can readily handle cats. I intend to contact them and ask their advice, but a big concern I have is winter storage. Especially since the response to inquiries all along the lakeshore near me about indoor heated storage - even for my current boat, a Catalina 25 - has been “please email me to get on our waiting list” followed by silence.

I worry that overwintering on the hard with weeks of temperatures well below freezing will put wear and strain on the ply/glass/epoxy hulls that aren’t seen with fiberglass-layup boats. This concern has me thinking about going *smaller* than I think would be ideal for any eventual long-term cruising (e.g., Tiki/Pahi 26) so that I have the option to dismantle the boat and trailer it to a storage facility in the off season.

Please keep us posted on what you find out about Lake Erie, and what you decide. I’d be interested to follow along with your eventual build, since you’re likely to encounter many of the same challenges and conditions I might here in the Midwest.



Ian R said:

This is actually a difficult problem seldom discussed...

I launched my boat at Fosdyke on the Welland Lincs UK. There was 3"" each side of her in the bay she was launched out of there from the slings by their brilliant boatbuilder and yard manager Greg.

My current boatyard won't lift my boat (beam 5.33 +),  not because of the weight,  but because they have narrow areas for boat storage which don't fit in with catamaran sizes.

Where I am on the Dart, no one wants to know about lifting my boat, so have had to neap her for work (cheap, but bad on the knees).

This winter I wanted her out for a couple of months. They are all making so much money here from luxury boats I don't think I would like to pay the fees. The Exe canal is a possibility for winter but a way to work on the boat.

So it's neaping on the neighbouring beach and avoiding the storms which will continue to increase in the future, probably.

Generally, these things need to be taken into account when you have a widebeam cat. Personally, I don't want any other kind of boat, but it's difficult and expensive.

Breaking/re- forming the boat from the hulls is not a practical option to avoid this.

Here's an update on this to give you an idea of some of the problems involved with cats in a place like the UK where Covid Craft are filling the moorings (ie profiteers from Covid laundering their cash):

I booked my lift in September, for New Year. I was given a price and assured of a date. Around Christmas I checked that this was still available, it was, I was told, but no specific day given.

At New Year I went to the dock office for the fourth time, when I was told that there was no record of the booking and that the next booking date available would be in May.

Some words were spoken, and as I left I thought the door glass might have shattered behind me and the door come off its hinges. So what - I'm a joiner.

The MDL boat storage was bought out by the yard I am at, I finally got a lift last week.

In the meantime I had been over to Blackness over the river to see if they would lift the cat. The boatyard manager ummed and aahed and told me they had lifted a small cat the previous week and it had taken them a long time on their gear.

He clearly had no wish to do it so I had no confidence in that either.

A few weeks ago in the last named storm a fibreglass float from the pontoon detached and was spotted jammed under my boat by my neighbour who is a liveaboard. Fortunately the yard detached the float and little damage was incurred.

I'd rather not be afloat in the weather we are now getting, but alternatives are hard to find! And don't forget, we pay 1.5 x fees to get treated like something you don't want stuck to your shoe.

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