Why would I ever consider a trimaran?

October 3, 2018 John Rich

As a multihull man, in particular, one who loves and sails trimarans, many people ask me...

“Why would I ever consider a trimaran?” 

They often say: 

1. Trimarans have a smaller accommodation

The internal accommodation is compensated by the living space outside. After all, when you go sailing you do not want to spend your time inside your cabin, do you? You want to enjoy the environment and atmosphere. Most often we sail the trimarans in warm waters and to get the most out of the time on board, to have fun with people around us, above all to enjoy our sailing experience. That is what the trimarans offer, in particular, our Corsair Trimarans! The photo above is a Corsair Pulse 600.

2. Trimarans take on board less “stuff”

Contrary to many sailors inventories on board of they vessels trimarans are not floating storage spaces. The old motto is “when you go sailing take only what you need and then take only stuff that is light”. In fact next time you go sailing just spend the day taking stock of what you have on board and weigh it all on the scale. You will be very surprised how much unnecessary stuff you carried in the past when you went sailing. Now sort out what is really required on board. Weigh what you selected and put it on board. Then weigh what you need on your trip, take “just in case” few extras. Now load your boat taking care of what is where so you can easily find it. You can make a little packing scratch so your crew could be informed where things are located and why. Often people sail with full tanks of fuel and water, why? 

3. Trimarans are wide

The wider the boat the better it is, meaning she will hill less and with a wider overall beam the boat will be also stiffer. Flatter sailing platform on trimarans equates the faster speed. 

4. Trimarans need more space to park on shore, on the water or at the marina

Generally, it's correct with trimarans exceeding 38 foot or 12 meters. With smaller trimarans such as a Corsair trimaran, there is a possibility of easy reduction of beam by folding the floats tacking them neatly under the central hull. This operation is extremely easy and allows Corsair trimarans to be trailerable behind suitable SUVs, 4WDs and Pickup Tracks in case of Corsair 37. This gives the owners much needed freedom of mobility to follow the summer season across a continent, or each time sail in different geographical location, or if the owner likes to race major regattas to take their boat there. Additionally, your Corsair can serve along the way as a comfortable and safe place to sleep. This makes Corsair almost equal the Airstream caravan (or another type) with one major difference and greatest asset. Your Corsair will float, it will sail and motor around the lake, river, bay and the sea. It will above all do this very fast giving you a big smile each time you go sailing.

As an owner of a Corsair trimaran, you have many ways to store your trimaran. You can do this folded on the trailer with the mast and rigging down on your property next to your house, or at the boat-yard on the hard-stand, alternatively on any property where you can legally park your Corsair trailer.

You can keep your Corsair on the trailer, folded with the mast/rig up. This way your trimaran is more economical to store near the water where she can be easily launched. 

Alternatively, when your marina or boat-yard has dry storage area with mast/rig up and floats fully open you can keep your Corsair ready to deploy into the water and go sailing. 

While on the water at the marina you can moor your trimaran as is, space permitting, at the jetty or your pontoon. The best thing about Corsair folding ability is that while the marina space is at the premium you can fold your floats while motoring to your designated location and “park” your trimaran with her mast/rig up and just step off and on your boat going sailing at your leisure with a minimum of fuss. 

Lastly, you can moor your boat on a designated mooring and use marina’s tender service or your own dinghy to get on and off your boat.

All these options give you a great flexibility.

5. Trimarans can tip over

Every now and then we hear of horror stories of boats tipping over. When it happens to a monohull because of the ballast the boat most likely will right herself after a while. On board the catamarans or trimarans it is much harder. One thing is certain multihulls because they have no heavy ballast will float on the surface mostly because of positive buoyancy due to construction materials used on board. 

The most important thing is to understand why multihull can tip over and always sail within the safety margins. On monohulls, we try to keep as much sail area up to go faster, while on multihulls it is paramount to reef as early as possible anticipating changing nature of the weather fronts and local weather conditions. In fact, the multihull with less sail area or center of sail gravity will sail often faster and positively safer. The biggest challenge comes when sailing multihulls in the heavy weather, which is the art form in itself and demands practice and experience. In these situations, if you must continue your passage you will make it with utter respect and caution giving the most attention to the position of your trimaran in relation to the waves.

In all this please remember, your trimaran will be very fast and its safety will be governed by the ability to get to your destination before the weather gets foul.

The above image is a Corsair 760

6. Trimarans are more expensive

Buying a trimaran is like buying a sports car. You can buy a car that will get you from A to B, you can also buy SVU, Pickup, Van, Station Wagon, etc. You can also buy a Prestige or Exotic car. The function of each will be exactly the same, yet the price will vary between $10,000 and a $1,000,000. That is 100 times difference in price. Other words, you pay for what you want based on your needs, desires, and status. 

Trimarans are the most sophisticated types of boats on the market. That is why you do not see them very often and when you see one sailing you know that it is an ultimate sailing machine which will give you prestige, comfort within the confines of its platform and above all excellent performance. 

Ultimately the choice of boat one chooses will be up to the owner, we can only guide you towards your decision based on your sailing plans.

Learn more about the Corsair 760 HERE >>

About the Author

John Rich

John Rich is an outstanding yachtsman and multihull sailor and composite boat builder as well as an extraordinary man with the wealth of knowledge and unrivaled life experience which makes him a highly sought professional businessman, salesman, and trainer. He is an Australian sales representative for Corsair Trimarans and works as a salesman with Multihull Central, dealer of Corsair Trimarans and Seawind Catamarans.

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