Wednesday, 24 August 2016
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Schionning Line Honours 1400 PATSCAT
Schionning's portfolio includes 4 lines of performance catamarans: the Wilderness, Cosmos, Waterline and Line Honours' range. In addition. there are three lines of power cats, as well as several individual power and sail models, including some novel designs.

Much of Schionning Designs' work is targeted directly at sailors who share in the Schionning philosophy of what makes an excellent ocean-going cruiser. Part of this is that an ocean cruiser best to handle all ocean eventualities, fair or foul, should be fast. Though many Schionnings are built by professional builders, most are home built, so the Schionning family, who work the company, have personal connections with those who build and sail their boats. Enabling home builders to afford a top performing ocean-capable cruiser, and to complete one in a reasonable time is a key part of Schionning Designs' approach.

Particular care has been taken to design light and strong structures that are easy to build in relatively small sections, which can be moved by a group of friends when they have to be turned or manouvered.

The understanding of how the buoyancy distribution in the hulls determines good behaviour in a multihull at sea surfaced slowly and only became widely known among designers fairly recently. Modern designs, like all the Schionnings, have a lot of buoyancy in the ends of the hulls, stopping hobbyhorsing in swells. Generous reserve buoyancy forward, above the waterline, prevents dangerous nosediving when speeding downwind. Schionning catamarans have high bridgedeck clearance and short bridgedeck length (giving long hull overhangs), which combine to all but eliminate bridgedeck slamming in difficult conditions. Slamming is always disturbing, often demoralising and sometimes structurally damaging and should not be significant in properly loaded ocean-going designs.

The blend of strip planking and light flat panels kept in single plane form, makes building easy and quick and produces a finished catamaran of classic good looks which will not date quickly, giving you very good investment security.

Jeff Schionning believes that good performance and sailing ability is an important safety aspect. His yardstick for a good cruising catamaran is a capability to tack through 90 degrees of true wind while sailing at 8-10 knots in 15 knots of wind. With a main and jib a cruising cat should reach at 10-13 knots in the same conditions.

Fundamental to good performance is light weight and slim hulls - both to reduce hull drag. Many cruising cats on the market have voluminous interiors by having beamy hulls. Hull length-to-beam ratios of 8:1 are typical for accommodation-concious cruisers. Schionning designs are slimmer with a length-to-beam ratio of about 12:1 to 14:1 for the higher performance ranges. Daggerboards to improve windward performance are standard on all designs.

In the interests of safety Schionning catamarans have flat decks for more secure footing and escape hatches, in case of capsize. Rudders kick-up to prevent damage from hitting submerged objects and a storm eye is built into the forward beam to attach a parachute anchor bridle.

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