Case Study – Elan 394
Client, recently retired, was looking for a new boat for UK coastal and offshore cruising-cruising with wife, friends and family.
Opportunity to test sail Elan Impression 394 in February in Adriatic. Rob Humphreys design, and built by Elan Yachts of Slovenia, she was the factory’s own demo boat. Temperatures at minus 5, and winds of 15-25 knots- spectacular trial of the Slovenian coast- at one point, the coasts of Italy, Bay of Venice and Trieste, Croatia and Slovenia all clearly visible…
Deal done with Factory, vessel purchased and prepared. Sent by truck to Portoroz, on Slovenian coast. Chris Olsen arranged for clients specified inventory, tools and equipment to be shipped in advance. Safety equipment, mooring kits, utensils, galley equipment, tools, all duly appeared diring the commissioning process.
Hull had to degreased, abraded, masked up to the lase etched scribe lines on hull-(always too low for a cruising yacht!) primed and antifouled. All finished in high quality materials.
Mast dressed, including running up cables for anemometer, lighting, vHF aerial etc, and stepped, running rigging broken out and set up. Countless Selden deck turning blocks and mainsheet system to fit- genoa track travellers to run up..Asymmetric spinnaker kit set up. Boom fitted, sails bent on and sail bag with lazyjacks all set up.
Engine PDI’d by Volvo agent. Much time spent in local chandlery sourcing light line, cable ties for mousing all shackles. Biggest problem however was sourcing Campin Gaz-not available in Slovenia-nearest site over the border near Trieste-1st attempt failed, as Italians on Bank holiday!
Client wanted the boat sailed around straight to Dartmouth in one hit, so extra care taken to ensure rig integrity, shackles secure, chafe patches on sails etc. Vessel subsequently launched on fine spring day. Sail tested in Portoroz bay-all found satisfactory, with no snags of any significance found. Handed over to delivery skipper Trevor Vincett of TV Yacht Deliveries- all good; o. Trevor carried out a very thorough inspection of the rig, inspecting all areas- looking for exposed pins, chafe areas, and taped up any suspected potential problem areas. He declared the boat in good shape and ready to go. Finally, a dash around the local supermarket in hire car- bought all food essentials, loaded up, fuelled in at fuel pontoon, and off she went.
No wind sailing for first week/10 days- arrived in Palermo, Sicily for 1st stop, engine serviced, oils and filters changed-all satisfactory. Further motoring through to Gibraltar-then other extreme-headwinds gusting up to Force 7-8 all up through Biscay.
She finally arrived on her mooring a month from departure- approx. 3000 miles under her keel. Trevor made a point of commenting on how she felt to be one of the most seaworthy and re-assuring craft in those Biscay conditions that he had encountered over his years delivering. Good testament to a standard production Yacht. Client happily been cruising already this summer, down to the far West of cornwall, with all ports in between.