favorite this post Custom expedition modular multihull (catamaran trimaran proa) - $9000 (Greenlake) hide this posting unhide

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condition: good
length overall (LOA): 21
propulsion type: sail

Selling a custom-made catamaran/trimaran/proa kayak "tribrid-drive" (paddle/sail/motor) expedition vessel.

This vessel was conceived, designed and built to safely take my family of 4 out on saltwater sailing/shoreside camping kayaking adventures on and around the Salish Sea without the fear of overturning and dying of hypothermia. The 13 foot beam ensures this. We have logged thousands of trouble-free miles over 8 solid years on these boat(s)....many trips on the Salish Sea/Sunshine Coast/Desolation Sound, east inland on Lakes Roosevelt, Chelan, Pend Oreille, Flathead, and Hungry Horse Resovior, from San Francisco up the Delta to Stockton, and down the Columbia to (and across) Cape D. Trips lasted from a weekend to several weeks each.

Kids now in college, and am almost done building a larger time to move on and sell.


-Main hulls are (2) 20' 10" Seascape Expedition double kayaks with center storage hatch. These boats are a workhorse staple of the Northwest kayak touring scene, and are still made and supported. You can Google "Northwest Kayaks" for more info.

-The cheap original plastic bulkheads were removed and replaced with substantial foam/glass bulkheads to take the crossbeam loads.

-Amas repurposed from Hobie 14 hulls...stripped down, lowered several inches, and reglassed with new foam tops and stainless plates under the deck to take the load of the aka fittings.

-Boat designed around a modular system that uses standard 1.5" aluminum pipes and aluminum Speed-Rail fittings. One allen wrench allows the lock down or release of the pipe into any of the hull or ama fittings. Careful alignment during the build allows all the pipes (crossbeams) to slide in easily, even when under load, at sea.

-Boat can be set up in 3 ways:

--- CATAMARAN. This was the original design. Two hulls and three crossbeams. As the crossbeams are NOT in plane this is by far the stiffest configuration. 4 sails, 2 pivoting leeboards and 2 motors. (One motor drives it fine but nice to have a backup). Also a custom made heavy-duty fiberglass "grating rack" can be installed inbetween the hulls in this configuration, and that can be used to store massive amounts of gear or has even been used as a sleeping platform. Beam can easily be adjusted on the water for closer communication with the other boat or to come into a narrower area.

---TRIMARAN. This configuration was built from Hobie 14 hulls several years back to allow either one or two people to avoid having 2 or 3 empty seats with the full cat. Boat sails very well this way with 2 sails, 2 boards and one (or 2) motors. Boat in this configuration traveled from the Grand Coulee Dam all the way up to the Canadian border on a week long solo trip.

--PROA. After the trimaran was proven it was found that the performance using just one ama and 2 crossbeams (proa) was surprising good. The weight of the extended hull is plenty to counteract the sail forces. Extra pipes were purchased to allow two 2-person proas to run at the same time, and a system to link the 2 together with a very-duty hinge system was worked out as well. With the 2 boats linked the beam of the "boat" is about 25 feet, yet easily floats over swells.

-Boat can be paddled, sailed and/or motored:

---PADDLING. Boat is of course heavier than a simple kayak, so paddling is a bit harder, but it can be done. Boat was designed with this in mind and there is a clean sweep of the paddle on either side in any configuration.

---SAILING. Boats sails faster than you can paddle even in slower wind speeds. High end cambered Balogh sails and proper daggerboards allow very good upwind performance. Sails are very nice and have an ingenious "zipping" reefing system that allows you to retain some semblance of sail shape (and thus boat control) in higher winds. Boat had seen 13 knots in trimaran configuration in swells off Tofino.

---MOTORING. Boat can be driven, in any configuration, up to 5-6 knots with one (1) Honda 2 HP outboard. Gets about 32 miles per gallon in trimaran mode, so all day on a gallon is possible. Boat comes with 2 motors and adjustable aluminum/starboard mounts. I have often taken both just to have a backup motor but neither of the reliable Hondas have ever had a problem (with the exception of out very first sea trial but that is a different story.)

This is an overbuilt boat that has seen heavy water with no issues...rock solid construction. All critical bulkheads were rebuilt out of foam-core/bi-ax glass to take the loads of the 13' beam. Zero stress cracks in gel near fittings and no signs of any structural issues.

An article on this boat written by the owner was published it the August 2011 issue of the (now dead) Sea Kayaker magazine...mostly on the design and build. I have copies of this to share, as it might shed light on the boat.

Sale Includes: Two kayaks, two amas, all poles, mounts, brackets, 4 battened sails, 4 masts, 2 custom pivoting leeboards, custom central storage/sleeping rack for use in cat mode, modified Trailex aluminum trailer (licensed/titled), Garmin GPS with Salish Sea chip, emergency anchor, fuel tanks, 2 (two) Honda air-cooled long stroke outboards, 4 paddles, 4 skirts, dry bags, etc.

The only downside of this boat is that it is impossible to launch it without a bunch of people lining up and asking all about it!

If you eventually show up with some kids who seem genuinely excited about the prospect of learning how to navigate this area and sleeping under the stars on a beach on the salt chuck I will lower the price. I sincerely feel this vessel has been transformative "vehicle" for out family and would like nothing more to see it used to this end in the future....
  • do NOT contact me with unsolicited services or offers

post id: 6641360492



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