Sun Odyssey 1Author: Zuzana Prochazka
Photos Courtesy of Jeanneau

Practice Makes Perfect 

Sometimes a great idea requires an encore, and French yacht builder Jeanneau got that with the launch of their new 490. Coming fast on the heels of her 44-foot sister, the Jeanneau 490 took all the innovations that were introduced previously in Annapolis and, with the luxury of five more feet, added some flair. The results are applause-worthy.

Sun Odyssey 2

 

 

 

On Deck

What Jenneau practiced on the smaller boat, they perfected on the 490 and it’s hard to know where to start with the new features. Of course, the most noteworthy is the “walk-around” cockpit created by designer Philippe Briand. The decks slope down either side toward one of the twin wheels. Instead of climbing over the coaming, you simply walk from the drop-down transom to thebow and back. Judging from the reaction at the boat shows, this newfangled thinking will easily find an eager market because even those with limited mobility can move around easily. An added bonus is that this may help keep people in the sport longer.

Another head-smackingly brilliant feature is the backrests of the cockpit settees that lift and extend outward like gull wings to form large sunbeds on either side. This simple trick transforms deck space into lounge territory in less than a minute. This idea was introduced on the smaller model but with extra room in the larger cockpit, the concpet has grown into itself on the 490.

Newly added are two fun features if you want to party ashore and take along a portable galley of sorts. The optional 12V refrigeration unit that drops into the cockpit table can be lifted out and used ashore, as can the portable grill that hides in the transom seat behind one of the wheels. Just pack up the beer and appetizers and take the party to the beach.

Primary winches, which typically reside on the coaming, had to move inboard, but that’s a good thing. It allows the weight to shift toward the centreline and lets the crew face forward when grinding in genoa sheets so they can see the telltales.

The final benefit of this radical deck design is that the driver can now sit facing forward and that’s way more comfortable on long stretches of watch-standing or when tacking around the bouys. Deck drains were added by the wheels in case green water washes over the bow and rolls down toward the driver. If it’s that wet and lumpy, I’ll just drive from the high side.

Sun Odyssey 3Overhead hatches, hull windows and indirect lighting at floor level floods the master suite with light so nobody will feel buried in this sumptuous cabin

What’s New Below

Belowdecks is where the extra length really served this new model well. Most of the additional space was dedicated to the galley and the navigation station. The forward-facing nav desk is close to the companionway for easy communication with the helmsperson. It also forms a part of a small dinette with another bench seat forward between the desk and the galley. A dedicated double-seat nav space is a rarity on this class of cruiser and it makes a great place to sit with a cup of coffee and discuss the day’s plans with your mate.

The galley was reconfigured too. The refrigerator drawer that was in the 440’s aft utility cabin is now at hand in the galley so the cook won’t have to go far for the steaks. There’s even an opening hatch directly over the three-burner Eno stove to vent cooking heat and odours. This functional kitchen can be used under way, even on a port tack, because the chef can brace against the small centreline island and keep both hands free to work.


Sun Odyssey 4The large cockpit ensures that relaxing with sundowners will be a favored part of the day.

The Jeanneau 490 comes in three configurations with three to five cabins and two to three heads. The centre section with the saloon, galley, and nav desk remains mostly the same while the ends of the boat change. The exception here is that the fabulous nav desk can be replaced by an over/under cabin or another head. It’ll make more room for charter guests but otherwise, it’s a shame to mess with that lovely captain’s retreat.

Sun Odyssey 5The Jeanneau 490 looks much bigger below as the eye is drawn along the entire length of the boat from the companionway all the way forward to the master stateroom.

In the standard owner’s layout, the master is forward with an island berth, a head to port and a separate shower stall amidships with its own sink outboard. The front side of the shower compartment, which faces the bed, has been used well. It holds a flatscreen TV, a bookcase,and drawers. For charter, two cabins and two heads can be wedged in here,but for private use that wouldn’t be my choice. Oh, and take note and rejoice in the use of rectangular beds that won’t need custom sheets – isn’t that nice for a change?

 

Under Way

Our test day in Miami was an ideal mix of bright sunshine,lots of wind, and flat water – the kind of conditions that make you want to stay out all day and then maybe head to a nearby island to use that portable beach galley.

Sun Odyssey 6The very functional galley ensures that the chef will have bracing points even on a port tack.

With 16-18 knots of true wind, the1,188 square feet of sail area produced 8.1 knots at 60 degrees apparent wind angle. Not satisfied, we unfurled the Code 0 and that bumped us up to 9.1 knots. This boat loves to point and delivers snappy tacks through 70 degrees. The integrated composite sprit is convenient, too, as it does three things: Elongates the boat’s profile; moves the anchor well forward of the plumb bow to minimize stem dings; and adds sailplan versatility so you can use a Code 0 or a gennaker to blast downwind.

The rig and hull deserve a nod, too. The lower D1 and cap shrouds terminate at different chainplates – one on the outside and one on the coachroof – so it’s easier to make your way forward on the wide decks. Our test boat had inmast furling but a performance-oriented traditional hoist mainsail is available in a package that also includes tri-radial Mylar sails and adjustable backstays.

Sun Odyssey 7Unique in the industry, the Jeanneau 490 offers a nav station where the captain and her mate will be able to sit together and discuss the day’s itinerary.

The new hull is flat in the forefoot with a noticeable chine that runs from a foot aft of the stem all the way to the transom. This creates volume below for the staterooms and helps the model stay on her feet in a blow. With shallow forward sections she may pound upwind in a seaway, but we didn’t have a chance to test that on the flat waters of Key Biscayne.

Slipping along at nearly double-digit speeds, I found everything at the leather-covered wheels (composites are an upgrade) quite user friendly. The twin backstays are high and out of the way and the sheet bags help keep the cockpit sole clear. A few times, I tripped over the foot braces by the wheels and would have appreciated the pop-up variety to save my toes. As on the 440, the B&G multifunction displays here are mounted low on the pedestals and angled outboard. That placement makes them just about invisible to anyone in the cockpit. Maybe a single chartplotter on a swivel at the table would be more effective.

Too soon, we had to head back to the dock, so we fired up the upgraded Yanmar 80 (57 hp is standard) and scooted along at 9 knots and 3,100 rpm. Unlike the 440, the Jeanneau 490 has a Saildrive transmission,so Jeanneau offerstheir optional 360 degree Joystick Docking. However, it’s hardly necessary, especially with the optional retractable bow thruster that makes tight quarters maneuvering a snap, even for newbies.

Being number two has its advantages. With even a short time of market feedback, it’s easy to work out the kinks and introduce refinements. Jeanneau’s 490 did that and also has the additional length and beam to provide more elbow room. Otherwise, she’s a copycat in the best sense of the expression.

Sun Odyssey 8The Sun Odyssey 490 cockpit is a design highlight.

It turns out practice really does make perfect.

 

Specifications
LOA: 48' 6"
LWL: 43' 5"
Beam: 14’ 8"
Draft: 5’ 4” shoal, 7' 4" deep
Displacement: 24,890 lbs.
Sail Area: 1,188 sq. ft.
Fuel/Water: 63/169 gallons
Engine: Yanmar 57 or 80 hp
Designer: Philippe Briand
Builder: Jeanneau Yachts

 

Related Articles
Sail
  • 10 June 2020
  • By Ethan

Beneteau Oceanis 30.1

As boat builders clamber to create ever-bigger platforms for ever-more generous budgets, the entry-level cruiser has become an elusive animal. Sure, if you want to daysail, there are plenty of small open...

CY Virtual Video Boat Tours

Virtual Boat ToursWe all love boats and nothing can break us up! So, what better way to spend our time than looking at interesting boats and going aboard in a virtual ride or tour. We have asked our friends at various dealers and manufacturers to help us assemble a one-stop online resource to experience some of the most interesting boats on the market today. Where the CY Team has done a review, we connect you to that expert viewpoint. Our Virtual Show will continue to grow so visit frequently and check it out. If you can’t go boating, you can almost experience the thrill via your screen. Not quite the same, but we hope you enjoy our fine tour collection.

 

Read more about the CY Virtual Boat Tours....................

 

Beneteau Oceanis 30.1As boat builders clamber to create ever-bigger platforms for ever-more generous budgets, the entry-level cruiser has become an elusive animal. Sure, if you want to daysail, there are plenty of small open boats from which to choose, but if you want a freshly built pocket cruiser, you’re in for a long search. Enter French builder Groupe Beneteau, which identified this gap in the market and set about creating the Oceanis 30.1, an adorable little cruiser that resembles her larger siblings in all but length and price. With all she offers, it wouldn’t be a stretch to call her a mini yacht.

Read More about the Beneteau Oceanis 30.1..................

Destinations

  • Prev
On May 19, the New York State Canal Corporation today announced an updated opening schedule for the ...
If you have four hours to enjoy a fine tour of one of Canada’s most interesting waterways (let’s ...
Boom & Batten Restaurant is suspended over the water adjacent to the Songhees Walkway and ...
Provincial Boat Havens are those special places to drop anchor in British Columbia’s West Coast and ...
NW Explorations, a Bellingham, Washington-based yacht charter, brokerage, and marine services ...

DolphinsBy the Canadian Yachting Editors


Canadians are blessed in many ways and especially when it comes to boating. We enjoy some the world’s most beautiful cruising waters and many places are as sheltered as they are scenic.

British Columbia and the Pacific North West plainly have the most breath-taking scenery with the combination of the majestic ocean views and the snow-capped mountains in the distance. It’s like no place on earth when you have a Killer Whale breach beside your little fishing boat.

Read more about Canadian Cruising...........

 

Lifestyle

  • Prev
The Council of British Columbia Yacht Clubs with over 50 yacht club members has become the voice of ...
Classic boat restoration expert and wooden boat builder Stan Hunter recently sent us this great ...
In Mid June, a floatplane plunged into Constance Bay on the Ottawa River after two planes collide ...
Winter is a fun time for sailmakers in Canada. We grind through mountains of repairs and have an ...
The seasoned sailor mapped out an ambitious course around the world — aboard his 28-foot ...
Clean wake: A concept amongst cruising sailors that stresses the impact that individual behaviour ...
This line-up of Beneteaus can to us from our friends at RCR Yachts in NY State where they are ...
As another harsh Victoria winter came to a close, the deck repair and refinishing continued with ...
The Peterborough Canoe Company was formed in 1892 and began production the following year after ...
On one of the sunny days we had recently, Kyle MacTaggart in Honey Harbour ON fired up the Merc to ...

Cobourg Yacht Club - 2015 Sailing instructorsKatherine Stone

Like many other harbours on Lake Ontario, Cobourg has seen its fair share of changes. Screams used to be heard from kids piled into a toboggan on wheels that went hurtling down a wooden slide into the harbour. Above it all was the bustling din from the waterfront of ship’s whistles, train engines, foghorns and thundering coal cars. It is now a rather serene place for the locals and visitors to enjoy various watercraft. Fortunately, the beautiful beach that lines the waterfront is still a star attraction for the town.

Located 95 kilometres east of Toronto and 62 kilometres east of Oshawa on the north edge of Lake Ontario, United Empire Loyalists first starting arriving in the area as early as the 1780s. The first settlement in 1798 was called Buckville, later renamed Amherst, then called Hamilton (after the township) and also nicknamed Hardscrabble. It wasn’t until 1819 that they finally settled on the name of Cobourg, which was incorporated as a town in 1837. In the late 1820s large schooners with passengers and cargo had to anchor well off shore, as there was only a landing wharf. A group of Toronto businessmen formed the Cobourg Harbour Company which built the wooden Eastern Pier from tolls charged for the use of the harbour.

Read more: Cobourg Yacht Club...

DIY & How to

  • Prev
Many boats are now on the water after a COVID-imposed hiatus – and with a shortened ‘prep’ period, ...
Wrapping your hull with marine vinyl wrap instead using traditional marine paint seems like a new ...
Boating safety is always—always—a critical consideration whenever you push off the dock, but with ...
Building on our last two editions (Sealants, and Fibreglass, respectively), Gelcoat is the next ...
After a successful R2Ak and regatta season in 2019, I felt that Pitoraq was due for a major ...
Pause for a moment and ponder this question. How much is your life and your safety at sea worth? ...
Last edition we talked about sealants to perform tasks like bedding and sealing. Other tasks like ...
Over the winter, a many-thousand pound fiberglass, wood or metal shell is held in position by only ...
Since the late 19th century, a debate has raged on the relative merits of diesel fuel over ...
This bag does more than hold your anchor and rode in one tidy little pile. After you’ve anchored ...

Andrew AlbertiIn the past two issues we have been doing an overview of the right-of-way rules. In the first, we did a review of Section A of Part 2, in the second we did a review of the definitions. This issue, we will look at Section B of Part 2, General Limitations, which is essentially limitations applying to boats that have right of way according to Section A.

GENERAL LIMITATIONS

14 AVOIDING CONTACT

A boat shall avoid contact with another boat if reasonably possible. However, a right-of-way boat or one entitled to room or mark-room

Read more about the right-of-way rules.......................

 

  

Marine Products

  • Prev
Wet decking can compromise passenger safety on boats, particularly when boarding or disembarking. ...
Anyone who has repeatedly used a rag to clean gelcoat, paint and delicate surfaces has seen the ...
The new Mercury Racing 300hp Five‑Blade CNC Cleaver propellers are designed expressly to maximize ...
Beneteau may have outdone itself with introduction of its new Gran Turismo 36, manufactured in ...
Yanmar Power Technology has announced the development of a hydrogen fuel cell system for maritime ...
Kevin Monahan is a retired Canadian Coast Guard officer with more than 20 years of experience ...
The new 2020 PORTS Georgian Bay, North Channel & Lake Huron Guide is available for purchase at ...
Professional boatbuilders don't want to have to redo a job any more than a DIYer. Many choose Life ...
Since its introduction last year, the JBL by Harman Marine BassPro 10" Powered Subwoofer (JBLMBP10) ...
After decades of perusing charts and guidebooks as part of planning a cruise, it was a totally ...