By Chris Beeson
The steering, while not as free as aft cockpit yachts, gave a nice direct feel and good feedback to the helm. With both furling genoa and mainsail controlled electronically, combined with electric winches, it really was push-button sailing at its best. Using the mainsheet winches for the mast-led lines saves the expense of extra winches and keeps everything within the helm’s reach and control – making her a doddle to sail single-handed. With the genoa winches outboard though it does mean you have to lean out to release or load up the sheet on the winch.
Being centre cockpit, you get a nice feeling of safety and security in the cockpit. It’s also narrow enough brace your legs across when heeling. The coaming is high enough to be comfortable, although it might have been nice if the cockpit corners were a little more rounded.
What’s she like in port and at anchor?
The twin bow rollers are enclosed in the bowsprit, so mooring chain would have to be threaded through from underneath (hoping there’s enough slack in the pickup buoy) or taken onto the deck cleats. The latter is preferable because there’s nowhere to attach a mooring or snubber line with a fair lead from the bow roller. Moving under power is fairly predictable, more so on this boat with both bow and optional stern thruster to help, although the steering was quite heavy under power. I did find the electric winch sail controls on the side of the binnacle could trap my hand when moving the engine throttle through.
With the optional cockpit enclosure sitting on deck was pleasant even while the Swedish weather did its best to wash us away. Down below she is simply a pleasure to live on; cosy and comfortable, once you’ve mastered the light switches. The long galley works well in port as well as at sea, and the saloon table opens wide, enabling you to feed as many guests as the seating will accommodate.
Would she suit you and your crew?
If you mainly sail as a couple or with a family grown up enough not to take dividers to the wood work, she’ll make a great home from home that you can cruise for many years to come. Priced against the new Hallberg-Rassy 44, the 6,043,200SEK standard Najad looks about 500,000SEK more expensive, until you bring the Hallberg-Rassy up to Najad’s more comprehensive specification, and then the boats become very closely matched.
If you have tin mine-like pockets, yachts of this quality are rare. I defy anyone to go onboard the Najad and not feel the need to run a hand along the smooth curved fiddle, or break a smile at the tactile finish of the golden brown mahogany. There are many areas of solid wood and detail that you just don’t see on other yachts, like the slabs either side of the companionway steps; it’s easy to see why Najad has the reputation for quality it does. She really is a luxury boat in every sense the word.
Facts and Figures
Price: SEK 6,877,140 (approx. £605,941 inc VAT) in Sept 2016
LOA: 13.50m (44ft 3in)
LWL: 12.20m (40ft 0in)
Beam: 4.03m (13ft 3in)
Draught: 2.10m (6ft 11in)
Displacement: 14,000kg (30,865 lb)
Ballast: 4,800kg (10,582 lb)
Ballast ratio: 34.3%
Sail area: 95m2 (1,022 sq ft)
SA/D ratio: 16.6
Diesel: 425 litres (93 gal)
Water: 550 litres (121 gal)
RCD category: A
Designer: Najad & judel/vrolijk
UK Agent: Boat Sales International Ltd.
Tel: 02380 457 966