Building a Solar Arch

I started this project over a year ago when I began to realize that our solar power supply and dinghy davits were not going to cut it for long-term cruising. We need much more power and a much better dinghy lift. 

 I started off by clipping images from youtube videos and the internet. We happen to have a Leopard 43 catamaran like the boat owned by  I tried contacting Just Catamarans who built the solar arch on Curiosity, for specs or details on how they built their solar arch and dinghy davit system, but they were not helpful. None the less this is the solution that I wanted. The Wynn's videos and resources are quite useful. 

Gone With the Wynns Solar Arch and Davits

First we want our dinghy to hang out of the water more. We would like at least a foot more height. 
Below you can see my dinghy and davits. When sailing in big wind waves, occasionally the waves will crash into the outboard and on rare occasions the rear of the dinghy.  In addition to waves, our dinghy, while pretty light, is 14 ft long, so it does not fit between the scoops. The davit arm should lift the dinghy from behind the scoops making it easier to manage.

Our Dinghy Mischief

Failing to get any help from Leopard or Just Catamarans I sat out trying to find a welder and designer. I got loose quotes back from a few that ranged anywhere from 25K to 3.5K. We found a great welder in Ensenda who wanted to build it for super cheap, but we could not find a slip! 

I guess it's up to me...

I decided to design the solar arch myself. It will be a combination solar arch and dinghy davit system. I started by using to create a drawing of what I wanted to build. Onshape is a free online CAD program, anything you create in the free program is publically available for others to use. Click here to check out the actual drawing.

Leopard 43 Solar Arch w/ Davits


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