Expo 14.2 experience



Thread starter #1
Hi all,
I have a new Expo 14.2 and here are some of my first impressions with the boat. Were I sail is the Ottawa River (ON, Canada).
In the river, we often find gusty and shifting winds. River currents add to the excitement, since we normally sail close-haul upriver (some times, in light winds, we go “backwards” in close-haul).
With the Expo, during my 2 month-experience with this boat, my impressions were:
a) I can sail single handed in gusty conditions below 20 knots. There is no jib.
b) Main sail has two adjustments: inhaul and outhaul lines. The inhaul (or furling line) furls the main. The outhaul puts the sail out. By loosening the outhaul, with the inhaul cleated, we can vary the main sail shape. So, when running, I have used this feature in order to make a bag shape with the main, similar to a “spinaker” with lots of bag. That has helped in light conditions with back winds.
c) In rough conditions, sailing with two people, with winds gusting from 20knots to 32knots, we manage the boat by reefing to almost 50% of the main sail area (using furling line). However, in upriver, the under powered sail could not cope with the river currents, 2-3 feet waves and winds, so that with small sail area the boat went to a “stop”. The solution was to give more sail power and “brace ourselves” for some nervous hiking (with waves we didn’t have fun). I wouldn’t try it again with my Expo, unless if caught by surprise in a storm. The boat past this test, but we lost a batten due to excessive luffing during tacks. I was surprised with that, since the battens go inside appropriate pockets with velcro lids alongside the main sail.
So, hope the experience above can help filling the extreme lack of information we have on Catalina Expo 14.2.