Ronin is a Dean 440 Espace designed by Peter Dean for safe and comfortable long distance offshore voyaging. She is a very strongly built catamaran with a large interior, deck and cockpit that provides lots of living space and privacy for crew.

After Ronin was launched in 2003, with the original name Dreamcatcher of Poole, she crossed the Atlantic and cruised extensively in South America and the Caribbean. There she was sold to a new owner who continued cruising and crossed the Atlantic for a second time, back to Cape Town. After spending several years in South Africa she was purchased by Allspice Yachting (Pty) Ltd. and renamed Ronin, a Japanese idiomatic expression for “wandering man”, with the goal to sail long distance offshore to foreign destinations.

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Dreamcatcher of Poole (now called Ronin) in the Caribbean sea.

General dimensions

Length Overall: 44ft/ 13.41m (with bowsprit fitted 50ft/15.24m)
Beam: 7.25m
Draft: 1.10m
Displacement: 13,000kgs
Mast Height Off Water: 64.58ft (19,68m)
Mast Height Off Deck: 57.37ft (17.48m)

Ronin’s uncluttered and spacious deck provides ample space for lounging in the sun or working offshore.

Interior Accommodation

Ronin has a very large interior space to accommodate eight crew members comfortably. The galley is large and very well equipped. Two of the four cabins are equipped with king-size beds, one with a double-size bed and one cabin with two singles. Ronin has three heads and three separate showers, including one sit bath.

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Ronin’s interior layout provides crew with lots of privacy while underway and when in port.
The saloon table is large enough to sit all eight crew members.
The galley provides lots of space and equipment to cook meals for eight crew members.

Forward Cabins

Both forward cabins on Ronin have king size berths. For storage there are two spacious cabinets, with timber steps in between, a large wardrobe with four shelves and a hanging locker. Dressing tables with cupboards underneath and 220v switched power sockets are located against the hull. Two opening overhead hatches provide ample natural light during the day and two reading lights, one florescent light and one secondary light can be used during the night. Each of the forward cabins have en-suite heads with a hand basin and shower area that is supplied with pressurised hot and cold water. An overhead opening hatch and fluorescent light in the head provides ventilation and light.

King size bed in the star-board forward cabin.
Forward head in the star-board cabin.

Port Aft Cabin (Skipper’s cabin)

The port aft cabin, usually occupied by Ronin’s skipper and/or crew, has a  double berth with an engine compartment underneath. A large wardrobe with a hanging locker and shelf unit is used to store tools and spare parts. Unlike the forward cabins, this cabin does not have large overhead hatches, instead ventilation and natural light is supplied through three opening port lights. At night, a fluorescent light and a reading light can be used. 220v switched power sockets is available to charge any devices. A manual bilge pump, with handle, is located underneath the berth for use in emergencies. The locker at the foot of the bed provides access to the rudder controls, tiller arm, steering mechanism and autopilot power unit.

Port aft cabin with a double berth.

Starboard Aft Cabin

The starboard aft cabin has two single berths with the engine compartment under the outer berth, which also provides access to the calorifier. A large wardrobe, with hanging locker and shelves, is available for storage and also contains the Spectra Watermaker. There is a small shelf above the beds to store books or personal belongings. Similar to the port aft cabin, this cabin has three opening port lights which provides ample ventilation and natural light. At night a fluorescent light and two reading lights can be used. This cabin also has a manual bilge pump, with handle, located underneath the outer berth for emergencies and the locker at the foot of the bed gives access to the steering mechanism.

Star-board aft cabin with two single berths.

Construction details

Ronin is very strongly built with heavy hand-laminated 1200gm2 quadriaxial stitched fabric hulls that are balsa-cored above the waterline and solid GRP below the waterline.  The hull/deck joint is through-bolted as well as glassed over, and 22mm thick plywood bulkheads are structurally laminated in place. Buoyancy chambers in the bows and sterns allows for increased performance downwind and in big seas.

Sail Plan

The mast, boom, bowsprit and whisker poles on Ronin was build by Sparcraft, in Cape Town, of extruded anodised aluminium and is still in as new condition. The 7/8 fractional mast has double spreaders and, to improve upwind performance and tacking angles, the mast is angled aft at 7 degrees. Furthermore, the height of the mast was altered from the original manufactures specifications to conform to the specifications for use on the ICW in the USA. Both head sails are bend on Profurl roller-furling systems and all running rigging are led to Anderson winches, which are one size up from the original manufactures specifications.



All the sails onboard Ronin was made by either Ullman Sails or North Sails, both in Cape Town. The fully battened mainsail has three jiffy reef blocks and lines complete with Fredderickson Battcar system. Both the Genoa and Code Zero are bend on Profurl roller-furling systems, with all lines led aft to the cockpit. A large Asymmetrical Spinnaker are kept on board for light down-wind conditions. The storm-jib is hanked on a dyneema halyard (temporary inner forestay) and is used during storm conditions.

Sailing downwind with a goosewing setup: Genoa out to starboard and Screacher out to port.
The Storm Jib is hanked on a Dyneema halyard which is tightened using an Anderson winch.

Standing Rigging

Ronin’s standing rigging is check thoroughly and regularly by going aloft. Here a bosuns chair is used, however, this was recently replaced with a high-end climbing harness for added security.

Onboard Systems

Engines: Twin Vetus 4.17 (42 HP)
Fuel Capacity: 600 Litres (160 Gallons)
Fresh Water Cap: 700 Litres (186 Gallons)
Fresh water produced using a Spectra Watermaker.

Safety Equipment

Ronin is a SAMSA Category A certified commercial vessel and is fully equipped with all the necessary safety equipment to go anywhere in the world her crew wants to take her.