Does the Prout 33 just have one engine then? With an engine in/attached to each hull then you've got something much better than a bow thruster for close quarters manouvering.
If you do have one central engine and want better manouvering then I'm not sure that a bow thruster will be deep enough in a catamaran hull to do the job. Sounds a bit wierd but I can imagine two low power reversible (perhaps electric??) engines at the stern of each hull, wired to a pair of throttles at the wheel would give a good turning effect in calm water when mooring.
One other way I've seen is a turnable central engine/thrust unit (usually an outboard) but that can't take advantage of the great leverage effect of the width between the hulls
it has one engine on a silette leg - this is steerable. With 2 engines it would be easy but that is not ecomically viable for me..
I effectivly sail single handed - my wife is unwell. I could park my last monohull single handed in most conditions but my feeling about the new cat is that it will be difficult in windy conditions blowing you off.... It is further, steeper climb, to get out of the cockpit and get the lines ashore. I will be heading south for the Med once I have splashed her in May but do not want to 'frighten' my wife who now prefers marinas or indeed prang the boat....
A bow thruster seems like a good solution but which one? - what experience have people had with them?
Arent the prout's fitted with that movable leg jobbie?
I did a day skippers on one to get the icc and she spins on a sixpence with that.
I have a fixed outboard in a well and we do not have too much bother with berthing our cat. If as you say you are going to, or the boss should I say, prefer marinas then there always seems to be someone around - or you could ask for the marinaros to help.
Just a germ of an idea, not thought through in any detail, but what about mounting a conventional outboard with remote controls forward of the living accommodation? It would give you a second power source and be a lot less expensive than a bowthruster, and avoid all the expensive electrics.
cant talk about the ability to fit to the prout, but I know a catalac 9m with a single vetus thruster fitted. This provides more than sufficient for bertheing either port or starboard side too in up to 20kt wind on the catalac, anda prout has a much better aerodynamic shape. The problem of vetus fit is the narrowness of the hull and the size of the tunnel (150mm) IIRC the prout has a lot less hull underwater at the bow, and a much narrower section. However I had intended to fit a sidepower unit to my catalac and that is suitable for much narrower sections, and also has the smallest tunnel size (125mm). Basicaly it needs to be a certain distance below the surface, and then should be as far forward as possible.
I don't know whether it will be of any help, but April's PBO has an ad for a retractable bow thruster. It looks as if it doesn't need a tunnel, and when operating projects below the boat so that it might overcome the shallow draft problem. It's on page 106; it's a Plastimo ad for a Maxpower thruster.
Unless there is another 9m Catalac with a single bow thruster it is mine that Talbot mentioned. I fitted a 55Kgf Vetus to the starboard hull. It does push better to port but with an outboard connected to the steering I can turn on the spot. an ideal option would be 2 smaller ones but that doubles the cost. I fitted a seperate battery that is charged from the main ones through an Adverc ? 12/12 charger. So far this bow thruster set up has worked for over 3 seasons and I would be lost with out it. Berfore fitting or even buying I went through the Vetus calculations and came out with the 35Kgf as being the ideal but for around another £100 & same size tunnel I fitted the 55Kgf. I would certainly fit another bow thruster to another boat; though I would do a lot of the minor installation in the winter and install the tunnel etc. in the summer when the fibreglass is quicker to cure.
I have a maxpower retractable box thruster on my monohull and can verify the exended depth makes is more effective and quieter in use, than a shallower 'tunnel' type fitting.
My own bow section is pretty fine - so could imagine one fitting into a cats hull.