Wharram Builders and Friends

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Wharram Amamaniki daysailer? - a verbal doodle for discussion...

I used to dream of building a Wharram and sailing away. I even bought some Tangoroa study plans when there were only 'Classics', unfortunately life rarely turns out how you imagine and that's as far as it went. However I have continued sailing and watched with interest the development of Wharrams from the sidelines.Sailing away is no longer on the cards, daysailing in rivers and estuaries, an occasional short coastal hop and generally just messing around in boats is what I enjoy these days. To this end I have been interested to see the latest two designs Amatasi and Mana, however neither quite match my 'ideal', but they certainly have me thinking about what that 'ideal' Wharram dayboat would look like.

A cross between the two, an open boat about 25' long with a simple platform (a la Amatasi) a cat ketch rig, conventional sterns, keels and rudders (a la Mana). Difficult to achieve since Amatasi doesn't lend herself to a conventional back end, and though Mana hulls would seem to be ideal they're only available in the Mana kit (i.e. no diy plans to enable only hulls to be built and combined with the desirable Amatasi features).

So that's the 'Amaman...', what of the '...iki'? Well, from the Wharram Builders and Friends website it seems many Wharrams are out of commision and/or neglected, the decks/hatches/cockpits and particularly the crossbeams seem to suffer whilst the hulls are perfectly serviceable. So, take a Tiki 26 (small Pahi or Classic?) in need of some tlc, and convert it to open Amatasi-like hulls, platform and rig.

I'd probably go for alloy masts, fully battened sails and daggerboards too!

What do you think?

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Check out the Hitia 24 in Thailand. The guy returns emails with questions pretty fast

I'm new to posting on this forum though I have been reading it for sometime. I see my first mistake is to post this discussion in News instead of Discussions, can it be relocated? 'Hope nobody thought a new design was forthcoming, apologies if you've been misled.

Thanks for the information Brad, I found that quite interesting. Hitias are open or closed, maybe the best of both worlds for a minimalist dayboat. A stretched Hitia versus a flat top Tiki 26, I wonder what the thinking was behind that decision? And I think I read that she's no longer with Siam Sailing, what's happened to her I wonder?

Of course there are lots of options from the Wharram catalogue, especially if combining features from more than one design, or resizing as in the case of the Hitia 24. Unfortunately not with the latest hull shape, and we don't yet have much information on the relative merits of the various hull shapes either. Mana sailors please enlighten us.

If it gets to be more than just a pipe dream I will certainly contact Siam/Seascape for more details of their version of a Wharram Dayboat.

Hi, Paul, you called on Mana sailors so here I am. So far, excepting of course Hanneke Boone with the prototype, mine is the only other Mana so far. My first sailing season was very short, due to unforeseen "technical" difficulties so all I can offer is some vague comments.

The sailing on the few times I was out was either light winds, ghosting along without enough speed to properly execute a tack (my inexperience with the boat was a contributing factor) or just the opposite, blasting along in strong gusty winds with a reefed main. In both cases, I felt we were pointing well - on one occasion sailing beside Tanzer 27 monohull, not only were we sailing faster but also pointing higher!! One one occasion in a calm, I sat at the bow and using a paddle was able to move us along with relative ease.

The rigging will take me some time to gain proficiency. It is my first experience with a cat rigged main, and that big sail can be quite unruly in strong winds when not deployed properly. I had never sailed with a mizzen either and must put some serious attention to taking full advantage of it.

It will be interesting to compare it to the Tiki 21. It has been 17 years since I last sailed mine and I hope to be on it again in the new year when I visit my son. And next summer a friend who has a Tiki 21 and I plan to sail our two boats together. I believe the Mana will point higher than the Tiki but the real test will come when we get out side by side.

As for the large deck on the Mana, I love it. Its great for day sailing with plenty of room for family and friends. The deck tent I am sewing up will also make camping on board more comfortable, providing shelter from wind, rain and sun when cooking or just hanging out. 

I just posted a video of the build last winter. There are some shots at the end of the video of friends and family on board, which will give  you some sense of it as a day sailor. 

Overall, so far, the Mana has met and surpassed my hopes for a boat and I am very much looking forward to spending a lot of time on board next summer. The lake I usually sail on is 145 miles long, with interesting topology.

If you have specific questions, give me  a shout.

Hi Rod, thanks for your contribution. I watched your video just before I received notification of your post. I really enjoyed the story and noticed how honest you were about your abilities, you seem to be a very quick learner with techniques unfamiliar to you, and the filleting looked highly proficient. She looks great!

I attended the 2017 Hui in Cornwall, my very first experience of sailing on a Wharram. I sailed on the Mana, helming in your video clip with Jamie, on Saturday. The following morning with Nick Martin on his Tiki 26 Scat, then with Hanneke, James and Paul back on the Mana in the afternoon. I was too busy enjoying the sailing, and too inexperienced in sailing Wharrams, to offer a valid critique of the relative performances.

I'll be interested to hear the results of the Mana/Tiki comparison test you have planned.

I also wonder if the cat ketch rig would suit a Tiki type hull (21 or 26). Would the placement of the masts nearer the extremities exacerbate the hobby-horse effect, not having the fuller sections aft of the Amatasi or Mana designs?

Well Brad I took your advice and mailed Maxim at Siam Sailing and he certainly delivered.

He summarised his experiences building and sailing his two Wharram daysailers/coastal campers and gave me some building tips too. I say summarised but in reality it was quite comprehensive, and has given me much food for thought. Some of the ideas were in line with my own, like not 'building' beams, Max utilised a repurposed mast on the second one. Max also glasses the interiors, effected by glassing both sides of the ply before cutting.

The first version was based on a Hitia 17 upscaled by 25%, subsequently extended by inserting a section ahead of beam two to give a loa of ~ 24' 6". Unfortunately she was lost when a wayward motorcruiser drifted into her at her mooring and pushed her onto the beach.

The second version is effectively a flush decked Tiki 26 with increased beam and taller rig and performs very well in her role as a camping cruiser.

Thanks again Max, 'hope you don't mind that I've repeated some of your information here....

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