Meet the new Reach…
We recently purchased a Dolphin 460 sail catamaran (hull #6) for our next adventures, built in Aracaju, Brazil in 2005, designed by Philippe Pouvreau. With a 46 foot LOA and 24 foot beam, the volume and displacement of this boat gives us a boost in space and performance.
We had never run across a Dolphin in our 10 years sailing the Caribbean, but are glad that our research led us here. There are approximately 32 Dolphins built, some of which are a different 42 foot design.
Besides the beautiful lines and interior, some of the features that drew us to the Dolphin for passage making and living aboard included its solid build and decks, strong sterns, hardtop with enclosed cockpit and helm station, walk-through cockpit entry, open saloon with galley up, ample storage space, vertical windows with forward hatches for airflow, accessible queen berth.
Some differences from the Dolphin to the Manta are a roller-furled headsail instead of a self-tacking, camberspar jib, roller-furled screecher on a bowsprit, a split main-sheet in the aft cockpit, twin jib sheets run to port and starboard, copper coat bottom, insulated ice box and sink in cockpit, Isotherm front-opening fridge/freezer versus top-loading.
One of the most obvious differences of the Dolphin are the daggerboards in lieu of mini-keels, which drop down to 7.5 feet draft. When boards are retracted the draft is 4 feet with a skeg prop and rudder all that is left underwater, a difference we can feel at the helm along with the hydraulic steering, versus cable pull-pull.
The engines are Volvos like the Manta, only with a bit more horsepower… ours are 55hp each (1800 hrs)! As far as we know, this is the only Dolphin that has 55hp engines, most have 40hp, stern access. After launch, we powered at 9 kts running both engines at moderate revs (2000 rpm) and 7 kts under one engine at 2000 rpm - wow.
Other systems on the Dolphin include 72lb Rocna anchor, six Trojan LH16 batteries, three solar panels, (855W total), three Blue Sky solar controllers, 8kw Kohler generator, Garmin chart plotter, Raymarine instruments & autopilot, Icom VHF, Mastervolt (2500W) inverter/charger, Spectra (8 gal/hr) watermaker, Vitrifrigo drink fridge, 16 BTU air conditioner and two 5 BTU air conditioners each with reverse cycle. There is also a Brownie's air compressor onboard and several dive tanks!
The rigging and sails are original and will need to be replaced, even though lightly used. We’ll be upgrading several of the systems to turn Reach into a comfortable passage maker, including sticking with the LiFePO4 battery bank (once we went there, can’t go back), installing 30-40 gal/hr AC watermaker (same reason), adding SSB radio, upgrading rate-gyro autopilot and some electrics/electronics, to name a few examples.
Enjoy a quick tour of the boat ~
Saloon & Galley:
Starboard owners hull: