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I was looking at Catamarans for sale, and recently found an interesting "Custom Wharram Design 37" that appears to be rigid.   Anybody know the story if this boat?   It can be found here at the link below.   location is  Arapahoe, North Carolina USA.   Note the bulkheads tied directly into the coach roof.   There are not enough photos inn the add to really put together a good picture.  If I lived on the East Coast, I would take a drive over and have a looksee just out of curiosity.

                                                    H.W.

https://www.sailboatlistings.com/view/78094 

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I think this is the second Tangaroa MK IV built by Roger Ayers. Like his first Tangaroa "Marney," which I once owned, he glassed the beams to the hulls. But I remember seeing the second one which he had stretched to 37', and talking with him about it. From the pictures, I cannot tell if this is the boat or not. I saw it when it was fresh in 2000. This boat appears to have fallen into some neglect, as had "Marney" when I found and purchased her.

I'm very curious about the rigid beams on a Wharram.   I knew that some had been done, in fact I've seen photos where someone used steel straps in place of lashings..... something I didn't like.   I work with steel all the time, and feel that the potential for failure is fairly high.   lashings have proven themselves it would seem, with proper maintenance.   Glassed in beams gives me more confidence than steel straps.    The beauty of rigidity is that a full width cabin with less than standing height , integrated into the main areas of  the two hulls such that you do not have to go out into the weather is a valuable addition for nasty conditions.    The notion that a multihull must flex is contradicted by the many successful rigid multihulls that do not have break up problems.  

     I'd like to see photos and read descriptions about attempts, both successful and unsuccessful to make these boats rigid.

                                                          H.W.

If you really want a rigid home built catamaran with a bridge deck, I suggest looking at Hughes and Woods designs. These do not cost any more or less to build than a comparable sized Wharram, do not require heavy modifications (to get what you are looking for), and you will probably be happier in the long run if a rigid structure is what you want.

Dean Wilkerson said:

I'm very curious about the rigid beams on a Wharram.   I knew that some had been done, in fact I've seen photos where someone used steel straps in place of lashings..... something I didn't like.   I work with steel all the time, and feel that the potential for failure is fairly high.   lashings have proven themselves it would seem, with proper maintenance.   Glassed in beams gives me more confidence than steel straps.    The beauty of rigidity is that a full width cabin with less than standing height , integrated into the main areas of  the two hulls such that you do not have to go out into the weather is a valuable addition for nasty conditions.    The notion that a multihull must flex is contradicted by the many successful rigid multihulls that do not have break up problems.  

     I'd like to see photos and read descriptions about attempts, both successful and unsuccessful to make these boats rigid.

                                                          H.W.

I'm at the point of toying with what is available to build, and available in the used market that might fit my own criteria.   I've looked at Richard Woods designs, and Bernd Kohler's designs, as well as the Wharrams, and a number of others, including trimarans, and even Rob Denney's Harry proas.  The criteria I'm using to evaluate what might work well for me changes as I learn more and my familiarity with the various options grows.   As it  is none of the designers operates with design criteria that really match my needs.  The closest boat to fitting my criteria at this point is a blend of two catamarans, by a designer who is willing to support that fairly simple blend which would provide both the space and payload I need while not growing into a huge  oversize overweight monstrosity as has happened in the commercial  market, where catamarans are for the wealthy only.   I  like the simplicity, and light weight, high payload of the Wharrams.   Their availability in the used market makes them attractive.   Having built many things, including a number of boats (smaller), I have a good idea of the time and cost of a build, and have to ask myself if I really want to build....... or to sail.   Every year spent building is a year not sailing, a year closer to dying without realizing my dreams if one wants to be honest about it.

                                                                            H.W.

Budget Boater said:

If you really want a rigid home built catamaran with a bridge deck, I suggest looking at Hughes and Woods designs. These do not cost any more or less to build than a comparable sized Wharram, do not require heavy modifications (to get what you are looking for), and you will probably be happier in the long run if a rigid structure is what you want.

Dean Wilkerson said:

I'm very curious about the rigid beams on a Wharram.   I knew that some had been done, in fact I've seen photos where someone used steel straps in place of lashings..... something I didn't like.   I work with steel all the time, and feel that the potential for failure is fairly high.   lashings have proven themselves it would seem, with proper maintenance.   Glassed in beams gives me more confidence than steel straps.    The beauty of rigidity is that a full width cabin with less than standing height , integrated into the main areas of  the two hulls such that you do not have to go out into the weather is a valuable addition for nasty conditions.    The notion that a multihull must flex is contradicted by the many successful rigid multihulls that do not have break up problems.  

     I'd like to see photos and read descriptions about attempts, both successful and unsuccessful to make these boats rigid.

                                                          H.W.

I encountered another rigid Wharram recently on Utube.  A 35 foot Tangeroa by Alan Barber.... His method was to replace the lashings with chain.... It looks a bit outrageous, but he claims it is a big improvement over lashings.  The Utube is 7 years old, and there seems to be little if anything since that time,   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0JIMspwfjxM

    The question that pops into my mind on this is why not just use carbon tow, which could wrap over the beam, and then spread out over a larger area of hull side.

    I've also seen steel straps used, apparently through bolted......... I don't really like that.  

      The general consensus among Wharram people seems to be in favor of lashings, but I see issues associated with them that do not exist in a rigid boat, nor do I think the rationale for them is really valid at this point.  It's "tradition".

                                                                          D.W.

Here is a more extreme example.  A 40 footer built in '76, then rebuilt in '14 with rigid beams and an integrated cabin, currently listed on Craigslist Sarasota..........https://sarasota.craigslist.org/boa/d/sarasota-40-wharram-catamaran...

      There are fairly extensive interior and exterior photos.  It appears that the main cabins adjoin the bridge deck cabin.

                                                                  DW

I saw this 40' boat as well and contacted the owner,  Turns out the boat has sold. It has a large bed in the central cabin which looks to me like a good thing. I'd like to know more about it, how the beams were attached etc. Anyone know the best method of making the beams rigid?   Has James approved any of this? 

looking at how short of rigidizing , and integrating a bridge deck cabin with the hull cabins, to improve the interior spaces.    Looking specifically at a T38, the cabin sole in the main cabin is very far down.  Also everything above bridge deck level tilts inward rather significantly.  It is one or two steps further down into the cabins than on most cats.

    Assuming a pod, raising the coach roof over the main cabin would have little if any effect on windage.... While I don't have measurements, what follows from these observations is that one could raise the sole in the main cabin to a level where the bottom of the beams would be at countertop height, and likewise the coachroof in that area... that would from photos appear to be somewhere north of 18".   This would ONLY be in the main cabin.   This would allow the inboard side of the hull to be cut out at that level. and boxed inward 18" or so  increasing the workspace and stowage considerably, increasing floor area, and width all the way..... assuming the coach roof was modified also.  It also would create a very generous stowage area down low below the sole in the center of the boat.... where heavy stuff should be stowed.  It would get rid of the "living in a culvert" feeling people have complained about..... pushed out area would / could be seating in the pod.

     Below are two photos......... one of the T38 interior, and the other the interior of a comparable open deck boat by another designer (who originally worked with James).  This boat was designed as I described. It is a full 8' across!!

    At the bottom is a top view showing how this extends inboard.  The boat is 35' with a transom, making it very comparable to the 38 foot double ender that is the T38.  Note that there is about 4' in the middle on the bridge deck.

                                 DW

That's my boat. Marge and I purchased her from Larry and Connie back in July. She's residing on a mooring ball in Islamorada, FL, a couple of hundred yards out from the Lorelei.

I've some pictures taken during the last refit, but none show the details of the two, rigid beams.

Omar
 
Arthur Gottschalk said:

I saw this 40' boat as well and contacted the owner,  Turns out the boat has sold. It has a large bed in the central cabin which looks to me like a good thing. I'd like to know more about it, how the beams were attached etc. Anyone know the best method of making the beams rigid?   Has James approved any of this? 

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