A SUCCESS STORY
A SUCCESS STORY IN PHUKET, THAILAND
With fantastic weather Phuket is a great place to live; more so if you are into sailing with some of the best cruising grounds in the world plus a good sprinkle of regattas throughout the year.
Asia Catamarans kicked off in Phuket, Thailand in late 2012 when Australian Alan Carwardine, who was already living in Phuket, completed his employment with the UK based company Lewmar as the Asian area manager and joined forces with Swiss born Roger Diggelmann who had been running his own boat yard, Composite Yacht Constructions for 12 years in Phuket.
Alan is the designer behind Stealth designed catamarans as well as the many super fast Stealth Sports boats (monohulls) in Australia.
To kick start the new company Alan set about designing a new range of Stealth cats with more modern looks and fine tuning of the many areas that make for a good, user friendly and very livable but particularly fast cruising cat.
The new range incorporates the important original concepts of :
# Absolutely fun to sail, super responsive and more like a sports car to steer.
# Twin helms with excellent vision, traveller track and dinghy davits up on the solid and large cockpit roof giving an uncluttered cockpit with few ropes.
# Minimal sun ingress anywhere in the boat
# Maximum air flow for the tropical conditions with large vent tubes from under the trampoline into the main berths,
# Drop down and disappearing windscreens
# Internal steps that allow you to walk thru the windscreen frame, past the mast and onto the foredeck.
Stealth Cats launched to date
There are now 14 sailing cats and 4 power cat on the water.
The sailing cats range from the very fast semi race/semi cruising Stealth 11.8’s to a fully fitted out and live-board Stealth 13c charter cat with all the bells and whistles; Or the Stealth 13s, a faster more basic 13 metre version plus a fast world cruising 14 metre now halfway around the world with well over 25,000 nm under her hulls
In the powercat range launched to date is the 44ft power cat ‘Rendezvous’ which has had a very successful charter life carrying 22 guests and 3 crew with a max speed of 19 knots and a cruising speed of 15.
It is hard to believe but these speeds are achieved with a pair of 60hp outboards only so fuel consumption is very low, a big winner when chartering. To achieve such fuel economy a lot of effort went into reducing windage and reducing weight. With empty tanks Rendezvous weighs 3.6 ton.
2 new Stealth 47 ft powercats, Infinity and Maserati, the largest the company has designed and built are also out there working within the charter industry carrying 37 guests and 3 crew with a max speed of 23 knots and a cruising speed of 18.
This design has a pair of 140 hp outboards on a lifting mechanism thru a well in the hull.
Both these boats were purposely designed and built for day charters with the boats also being able to do extended overnighter if needed.
Orders in Place
A similar 47ft powercat is soon to be launched with a different interior fit-out for private use with a focus on luxury living and high end scuba diving.
Also not far away from launching is a brand new designed Powercat, the Stealth 36e. This small but very roomy cat is like nothing else with speeds of up to 24 knots, can sleep up to 6 people and can be hauled out on its own trailer with a typical 4WD if needed, a great idea in certain areas where the boat may not be used for months on end. The Stealth 36e is marketed by Multihull Solutions with hopefully many more orders coming in once the 1st boat is launched.
Java Yachting have recently ordered a new Stealth 12, the companies 2nd Stealth and our 1st repeat customer. Java Yachting is set up in Boat Lagoon Krabi on the eastern side of Phang Na Bay.
A new Stealth 12 for the designer Alan and his wife June is also in production with a launch date early next year.
This boat will be designed to be a good Asian area cruising cat plus hopefully ‘light up’ when on the race course.
Race results and other news
The all carbon Stealth 12, Cosmo was shipped into Sydney just before Xmas in time for the extended family to enjoy Sydney Harbor and the New Years Eve fireworks over the holiday season.
The boat intends to do as many East Coast regattas as possible with as much cruising in between and is about to compete in the Airlie Beach Race Week followed by Hamilton Island.
Two Stealth 13s’ have been built to date with both boats enjoying some racing success with Phantom V winning the King’s Cup and recently winning the 2019 Multihull Solutions Race Week followed by another win in the Cape Panwa Phuket Race Week. These newish designs follow on from the very successful Stealth 11.8 cats such as Hurricane and Java both achieving excellent OMR results. The 13s ( performance version) has slightly more sail area but a metre taller rig, longer, slender hulls and carries a lower OMR than the Stealth 11.8’s?? Why they area a weapon on the race track.
The Stealth 13s, Phantom V is still based in Phuket while the owners continue to enjoy great cruising amongst their regatta sailing. Eventually the cat will be sailed to Ballina, NSW as her home base. Another stealth to watch out for in the SE QLD regattas in the future.
To date 6 King’s Cup regattas and 6 Phuket Race Week regattas have been won by a Stealth cat with many more regatta wins and podium finishes since the Stealth cats first started hitting the water 9 years ago.
The original Stealth 12 ‘Cut Snake’ is still doing well on the Australian race course winning the 2013 Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race and the Stealth 12.6 ‘Sidewinder’ now called Nautilas and based in Darwin won the Darwin to Ambon Race a few years back and has been continually cruising thru the Indonesian waters..
The Stealth designs have been dominating the Asian regattas in recent years and there seems no reason why this will not continue into the future with more Stealths and new Stealth designs on the race course.
The Stealth 13s ‘Top Cat’ and now called ‘LeVi’ has moved onto her new home in New Caledonia after being sailed to Singapore, shipped to Brisbane and sailed onto New Cal.
Galeforce has been sold, cruised most of Indo for 18 months and soon to be back in Phuket.
The Stealth 12 Motor Sailer ‘Integos’ is enjoying great cruising and lifestyle in the med after being shipped into Turkey.
The very fast Stealth 11.8, ‘Hurricane’ is being enjoyed by her new owners in San Diego.
The Stealth 14GT ‘Wow’ will soon enter the Panama to sail across the Pacific eventually back to Phuket completing here circumnavigation. Many great stories abound from owners David and Helen including winning the Heineken Regatta in Antigua 2018.
Solar electric Stealths for the future
There has been a lot of focus on electrical propulsion recently which due to gains in technology is no doubt slowly becoming more viable.
Alan has been doing some design work for a Stealth 13 metre electric solar-cat with a roof covered in solar panels (close to 10 KW); a pair of 6 KW generator down below; and 2 x 20 KW electric motors with shaft driven props. Each hulls solar panel array, large battery bank, generator and motor will be independent of the opposite hull.
Slowly, solar panels and more so Lithium batteries are becoming better and better and presented to the market at a much better price these days plus with the ability of Asia Catamarans being able to build light stiff boats the idea of a true electric catamaran seems very feasible.
All the research is showing the cat will do 8 knots for 5 hours not needing the generator and 15 knots for over 1.5 hours not needing the generator.
In Asian waters it is rare to be motoring for 5 hours a day anyway and the thought of doing so with no engine noise has great appeal not to mention the benefit to the environment. These figures only relate to clear sunny days of course.
There are certain sponsors interested and a few customers keen on this new green design concept but no doubt there will be some hesitation; it being such a futuristic idea.
New ideas and designs, new techniques and new materials continue to become available to all boat designers and builders. This ideology is the way forward for any business leaving little room for complacency; a key to the success of Asia Catamarans.