Question: The boat has a lot of freeboard which serves some design purpose – can you comment on that?
Answer: The freeboard of the vessel is dictated by the requirement for full headroom in the side hulls. The hull cabin soles are placed no more than three safe stair heights (30″ +/-) below the bridge deck height which is a function of hull center line spacing and wave clearance.
The Antares 44’s effective freeboard is therefor consistent with other catamarans that ensure safe bridge deck heights (the Antares bridge deck clearance above the waterline is 30″). The visual impression of more height is really only the result of our decision to provide an aluminum toe rail and make it the extreme “bumping” protector for the topsides. This decision precludes any “cheat” of the visual sheer line as the eye goes to the highlighted “edge”, but it does produce the safest and most practical results, wider side decks, greater utility and structural toughness.
Keeping the crew relatively dry and protected and having a surplus of reserve bow buoyancy are additional benefits that may not be immediately apparent. We felt that the adoption of this approach was most consistent with the expected sea going application of the vessel – a couple’s offshore catamaran.