Posts Tagged ‘Catamaran’
The future of foiling may be all chicken winged, if the latest from foiling design leaders VPLP is anything to go by. Called Voilavion, it’s a little black windmill of a 16-foot cat designed to be easily foiled by beginners at sailing schools, clubs, resorts, and the like.
This certainly ain’t the first tilting rig, but it would be the first to use a tilted rig to help a boat get – and stay – on the foils in little more than a mosquito fart. Makes sense in theory and on paper, and time will tell if reality corresponds to the thinking.
It may be a little early to call the thing a success, but it’s fun to talk about. Folks are monitoring the project here…
April 20th, 2017 by admin
April 12th, 2017 by admin
Gunboat Tech/Sales Director Nils Erickson got bored on the plane to the Caribbean and came up with this gem of a Form Guide for the high performance, HNW, hard-partying luxury cat racing class at the BVI. This is too good a piece for plain old pimpin’, but always consider the source!
Hot on the heels of the St. Thomas International Regatta, this year’s BVI Spring Regatta may well feature the hottest collection of performance multihulls ever assembled on Virgin Island waters. This burgeoning market segment is seeing new players in what was once Gunboat’s private playground, and with events not only in the Caribbean but in places like Palma (where last summer’s Multihull Cup attracted 3 Gunboats, an HH-66, MC2-60 and APC78), the future of big multihull sailing looks bright indeed.
Traditionally, Gunboats have made the Heineken Regatta their winter event of choice, but this year the fleet has settled on the BVI Spring Regatta in Tortola. Nanny Cay Marina has been running the event for several years now, and it’s become one of the best events on the calendar. With over 100 new slips open this season and constant improvements to the facility, Nanny Cay and BVI Spring Regatta have become a premier destination and event. This regatta will feature the fastest versions of 4 different platforms (Gunboat 60, Gunboat 62, Gunboat 66, and HH66) which should provide for some compelling action and some great stories. With that in mind, here’s my shot at an impartial Form Guide for the event, and we encourage you to follow along at Gunboat’s Facebook page here.
Extreme H2O (Gunboat 66): She’s the reigning queen of the West Coast performance cats having won catamaran line honors in almost every race she’s entered (Cabo, Transpac, etc). She’s left the Left Coast in search of stiffer competition and hopefully a new home (she’s for sale). Extreme H2O will face off with her East Coast rivals for the very first time. This Morrelli Melvin designed Gunboat 66 is the most technologically advanced Gunboat out there (hybrid drive system, HUGE C boards, T-rudders, etc) and she’s arguably the fastest Gunboat afloat. Weighing it at a svelte 17 tons, she’s still going to need a bit of breeze to take advantage of her greater righting moment compared to lighter and smaller Elvis. Extreme H2O will be sailed by Team Gunboat, with Vincent (the LP of VPLP), Xavier, and Matthias also from VPLP, as well as some of Gunboat’s French internal design and management team. Hopefully, Extreme H2O project manager Malcolm Park, skipper Hannah Jenner and her core crew can make up for the desk jockeys (myself included) that will be “trying to help”. VI legend/Olympic/America’s Cup/all-around rockstar Peter Holmberg will be joining to offer some local knowledge and expertise as well. He’s recently purchased an Outremer for his own personal enjoyment, so he’s the latest member of Gunboat’s extended “family”. (Photo credit Ultimate Sailing/Sharon Green).
Elvis (Gunboat 62): The King. Jason and the Argonauts. Throw a dart on that boat and you’ll hit a world champ. Their bench is deep with talent. Not only is Jason one of the best owner/drivers out there, he’s one of the best drivers out there, period. When they aren’t sailing on the Gunboat, they are busy in the GC32 circuit. When they aren’t doing that, they are crushing it on the Melges 32, Marstrom 32, Viper, whatever is fast and fun. These guys rarely make a mistake on the course and they are fast into and out of the corners with superb sail-handling. At <15 tons she is powered up early, and these boys stay on the throttle up the wind range (I’m not sure they even know HOW to reef). Combined with a devoted rum tank and a booming stereo system, these guys know how to race hard, play hard. Photo credit Christophe Jouany.
Flow (Gunboat 60): Hustle and Flow. The first Gunboat 60 to be fully optimized, she has redefined what we can expect from the Gunboat 60. There’s been rigorous preparation of the boat by one of the industry’s best skippers, Tony Teale. Rigging Project’s Nick Black has gone through the deck gear, layout, and helped with a new Lorima ultra high mod rig, Jack Slattery has spearheaded a new suit of 3di Sails, and America’s most famous multihull sailor and all around dynamo, Cam Lewis, is their own “Neal Cassidy”. Coming out of a refit that pulled 2 tons (!) out of the boat, they are sailing at the top of the game. Photo Credit Laurens Morel
Arethusa (Gunboat 60): No one better exemplifies the real benefits of a Gunboat like NYYC Commodore and Gunboat 60 owner Phil Lotz. He and his wife have spent the last several weeks living aboard, doing some racing and some cruising. They are more Corinthian in spirit, making full use of their boat before, during, and after the regattas. There’s nothing like racing at 25 knots, then coming back and cooking a delicious meal and enjoying the sunset from the aft deck of the very same boat. Phil has no shortage of trophies on his mantle, and they are fantastic sailors. They’ve (so far) avoided the arms race, but with Phil’s energy behind the new MultiRule rating rule, there should be more parity among the fleet. Photo credit: Gary Jobson
Momentum (Gunboat 60): Hide your daughters and bring your ear muffs. These Jamaicans WILL have more fun than anyone, guaranteed. The boat has 23 speakers and no shortage of Red Stripes. Legendary skipper Lucky Mike (picture a bald, S. African Captain Ron) and the rest of the crew will be the life of the party. Photo credit: Lucky Mike
Dominator (Outremer 5x): These guys were the big surprise at this year’s Heineken Regatta, beating larger (and way more expensive) boats on the water. Skippered by Gunboat 62 “Elvis” alum Dave Allen, and owned by the father of an Olympic sailor and Rolex Yachtwomen of the Year, this is a family that knows how to sail and these guys are punching way above their weight class. I expect Gunboat and Outremer owner Xavier Desmarest to be shocked at what you can do with/to an Outremer. Still in its original configuration, these guys are just sailing harder and smarter, and it shows.
Nala (HH66): The lightest, fastest, and most turbo’d HH66, Nala will be one of the fastest boats on the course. Coming off a big win at STIR, expectations are high for the boat. Owner Jim Vos is a fantastic monohull sailor who is taking his first steps into the multihull scene. He did spend the summer training on his A-Cat, though, so he should be comfortable at the helm. With HH designer Gino Morrelli backing him up and Kenny Read in the afterguard, this boat should be a real threat for line honors. Most people think of Kenny as a monohull guy (Puma, Comanche, Stars and Stripes), but don’t forget that he also owned a Marstrom 32 and previously owned my Formula 40, Soma, so multihulls are in his blood. Nala is over 3 tons lighter than her sistership R-Six, so any conclusions drawn about the HH66 based on R-Six’s performance at the C600 or Heineken will have to be reevaluated after BVI Spring. (Full disclosure, I was owner’s rep for the build of Nala for two years before I accepted the job at Gunboat. We pulled 3 tons out of the platform and turbo’d the mast, boom, and longeron. Despite my role with Gunboat I’m still quite proud of what we came up with. Go Nala!). Photo credit on the shot with thanks to our old pal L for sourcing it.
Conspicuously absent this year will be defending champ, Soma. She does have front row seats for all the action in the Sir Francis Drake Channel, though. Like Melania Trump, Soma is just a forgotten and unloved trophy wife…Photo credit: Mar Javierto
In the end, though, it’s not about who’s got the tallest mast or the most trophies. It has been (and hopefully will remain) about the people and times. The camaraderie on the dock, the time with friends and family, and the late-night repairs (and other shenanigans) are what make the events memorable and why people come back. We at Gunboat have got some fun events planned for the fleet that will hopefully form the backbone of a new tradition moving forward. VPLP are organizing a party at the Willy T (which should be legendary), BVI Painters and Nanny Cay are hosting a cocktail party in the new marina. Of course, Nanny Cay and the organizers of BVI Spring Regatta are responsible for all of it, so big thanks to Cameron, Miles, Emily, Judy, and everyone else there, too.
Though Gunboat invented this market segment, it’s a big tent and there’s room for everyone.
March 28th, 2017 by admin
Thanks to the wishes of an uber-secret previous owner, images and videos of the monster Gunboat 90 have been scarce since her launch. But now that the biggest and baddest cruising cat of all is up for sale, the covers are coming off for the world to see. She’s got the M&M ‘battleship’ lines that so many love about the pre-2013 Gunboats, and this girl is definitely the only luxury superyacht that can easily hit 30 knots under sail and embarrass any other superyacht on the planet around the cans.
We’re not superyacht lovers by any means, but if we were billionaire industrialists or climate-denying oligarchs, this is what we’d sail away on once the coasts are under water and the poor are eating the rich. Hit up Nils for more details about the G90 or to arrange a (carefully pre-qualified) test sail.
March 24th, 2017 by admin
There’s a new player in on-the-water drone work, and if this quick peak of M32 catamaran racing on Biscayne Bay from earlier this month is any indication, they’ve got the goods. Check out Up Top Photography’s other work here, and head over to M32 North America on Facebook to check in with the fastest one-design fleet racing in the USA.
February 22nd, 2017 by admin
Longtime Anarchist Dave Clark updates all of you foiling freaks on the new UFO. Ask him specifics in the thread. Check out the latest video of some winter UFO foiling from the air and the water over on Youtube.
Time to get excited! Things are coming together over here in Rhode Island. The UFO is finally through the stage of production preparation that I’ve come to refer to as “Industrial foreplay” and it’s go time. The hull and deck molds move back onto the Zim Sailing factory floor this week, where they’ll commence to build the first 40 boats. The first 100 sets of foil struts are being finished up at the extruder in New Hampshire. The next 50 sets of spars are on their way from the manufacturer overseas. North Sails is hard at work making the first 20 suits of sails and Schaffer Marine in New Bedford is going full-tilt machining parts. The objective is to build 100 to 150 UFOs in 2017 with the capacity to step up production further as the class grows. This is the start of the period where you folks with deposits will be getting the heads up of the materials nearing the mold and thus the option to opt in or out.
The Tweaks: What’s changed since The Foiling Week?
Controls: Every little percentage gain in foil control allows for a truer flight path. While these things aren’t noticeable in the beginner or intermediate use ranges, they pay off in spades at the high end, enabling you to fly higher and more aggressively in all conditions.
We added a stiffer all-carbon wand with a carbon paddle, taking all available buffering out of the wand. Buffering does a few beneficial things but also comes with some flaws, especially in extremely gusty conditions. All told the stiffer wand realizes the full benefit of our ‘mountain goat’ style gearing.
We lengthened the wand sprit. There’s been a revolution in the moth class around getting the wand as far forward as possible, as it increases the gain on the sensor and thus responds to pitch changes more immediately. This enables the boat to be flown more confidently in big waves.
Both of these things benefit performance racers and recreational sailors. From a performance racers perspective, the combined effects enable you to race harder. From a recreational perspective, it makes the boat hardier and smoother in challenging conditions.
Sail: We found it necessary to add a full-length batten just above the clew to get rid of a set of creases that propagated upwards from the tack. Further we added a cutout for the clew to add an extra bit of leech tensioning capacity, as a tight leech is critical to going really really fast on foils. We also added a fillet bulb to the bottom of the endplate which assures a solid deck seal. This bumps up the efficiency of the sail by another increment. The front end of the fillet bulb additionally functions as a pouch to stow the halyard and other items, closing with Velcro.
Dolly: While the single-axle beachcat dolly is the best option for a catamaran, keeping the bunks upright and lining them up on both bows is more annoying than it should be. Further, while a retaining strap across the deck does hold the dolly, it’s more trouble than it could be to tie on and untie. We found that the easiest usable configuration is a beachcat dolly with cylindrical pads and short tethers on either side, which clip to the gunwales. This makes the dolly easier to put on and take off the bottom. Further we concluded that a wider wheelbase made it easier to pull the boat towards a ramp on a reach, so we moved the wheels outboard of the hull. A tertiary benefit is that the new dolly from Dynamic Dollies packs exceptionally well.
Hiking straps: Outstandingly short sailors and outstandingly tall ones pointed out that the straps were either too far away or too close for them. Making their position adjustable solves this problem easily. People also wanted the straps to stand up more, so that sliding a foot into one would be easier. To do this, we rigged them with rigid tubing, which causes the straps to stand up.
Cosmetics: While I personally often scoff at considerations like this, it’s nonetheless an important feature to a good percentage of people and the UFO has gotten noticeably more spruced-up. While our original hull tooling was incapable of imparting a high gloss finish, the production tooling imparts a polished gleam to the gel-coat. Further, all the aluminum parts are anodized black, there’s a little bit more exposed carbon in the package and a few more decals and bright colors. In line with the UFOs alien aesthetic, the production sails are clear with neon green trim, which together with the white hull and black hardware, foils and spars yields a tri-tone neon green, white and black color scheme. The available deck pad color options are neon green, black and white and the gelcoat options are black or white.
The fully enumerated list of tiny updates, improvements, cleanups is too long to go into. This is merely the shortlist. Beyond that, it’s the same old basic fun-machine we know and love. And with that, I need to get back to the fight.
Fulcrum Speedworks llc.
February 7th, 2017 by admin
Screw the Monster Garage – how about one of the fastest cats of her time in your living room? We like!
The current owners of Nice Pair took the 40′ Crowther Super Shockwave (made famous by Bruce Geffen’s multiple Mackinac wins) on the Race2Alaska, and now they’re looking for a smaller, faster ride. Can you help them make their sleigh fly? From the thread:
Class C Catamaran, under 400 lb. all carbon. 25 feet long, 14 feet beam tall rig.
Who has foils to make her fly? Thanks, Stephen Marcoe. R2AK Team Golden Oldies.
The record-setting Pair is for sale, BTW…
December 18th, 2016 by admin
Unlike the messy US Election, the choice for the first-ever Olympic foiler was a much less nasty affair. Plenty of questions remain about the equipment and event choices for Tokyo 2020, but the odds-on favorite for the first flying boat at the Olympics is now the Nacra 17 in its new 4-point foiling configuration. A majority of the 89 votes cast during an EGM held over the weekend called for the full ‘evolution’ of a boat that had more than its share of problems in its first quad, and while no one thinks this will be an easy transition, Anarchists who’ve tested out the new design have walked away with big, big smiles on their faces. We’ll have more on this in a couple of weeks in Barcelona, but for now, here’s the press release from the Class:
On the 19th of October the Nacra 17 class members assembled for an electronic Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM). Three topics debated were
a) an update to the class constitution
c) whether or not class members recommend full foiling for 2020 or not
A presentation covering the proposed changes to equipment, pricing, and procedure was shown to 50 members in attendance over the course of 2 hours. Details of how the boats would be made stronger and more consistent were included. Also shown was three pricing options for a mk 2 Nacra 17 was presented which can be downloaded here.
The three options for equipment going forward are:
a) retrofit a mk1 boat to go full foiling for 7,900 euros
b) Buying a new platform for 14,500 euros, retaining the ability to sell the mk1 platform for a next cost of about 7500 euros
c) Buying a new boat for 24,250 euros, an increase of about 2000 euros from the mk1 price
Following the presentation was a discussion with questions and answers from class members and leadership. At the close the meeting, voting was opened to class members. 89 members voted from the total membership of 132, above the 40% threshold required to form a quorum. All of the motions passed, with the advertising and constitution motions receiving 87% support or higher. the major question of whether to recommend to World Sailing whether Nacra 17 should go fully foiling for the 2020 Olympic or not was a closer vote, but ultimately passed 48 votes to 33, for a 59% support level.
As such, the Nacra 17 class has sent a letter to the head of the Equipment Committee of World Sailing with the class recommendation. Class president, Marcus Spillane, will convey this position at the World Sailing Conference next month in Barcelona. Equipment of the updated configuration will become available following confirmation from World Sailing Conference of their position on the matter. Team wishing to get onto the waiting list for mk2 equipment should be in contact with the Nacra Sailing head office.
October 24th, 2016 by admin
Our long history with sailing’s premium luxury catamaran brand means we’re pretty stoked to see how quickly Grand Large Yachting has brought Gunboat back from the brink. While we’ll need to wait a while to see the just-announced, all-new VPLP-designed GB68 hit the water, this shot of the new Gunboat 57 VaiVai sending it hard in Newport last weekend sends a loud and clear message: Gunboat is back, and better than ever. With VaiVai hitting 17 knots upwind and 26 downwind last week without even letting her off her chain yet, she’s already exceeding expectations. Compared to the 55, the new boat is 10% lighter – nearly 1.5 tons – all while sporting major upgrades: An all-carbon interior, a gorgeous, high-modulus rotating Southern Spar, deep daggerboards, and amidships engines. Throw in air conditioning, a washer/dryer, and a gourmet galley, and you have a full fledged Caribbean dream that just happens to be faster than a new TP52.
A personal note from our editorial staff: We visited with the management of Grand Large several years ago in the south of France, and they are an impressive bunch with a serious passion for yachting. More importantly (given Gunboat’s history), they are a solid business with a strong product line and over 700 boats on the water, and we expect they will be around for a lot longer than you will.
It’s not too late to have VaiVai for yourself this Caribbean race season. But if you want to try her out first or charter for an event, get in touch here. Want to buy new? Looking for a job? Want a free puppy? Get in touch with them today.
We expect a ride on one of these, ASAP, and you all can expect a long chat with Erickson and maybe even the designer of the new 68 coming very soon on the SA Podcast. Got questions for these guys? Post them in the GB68 thread.
NOTE FROM THE EDITORS: Just to set the record straight, as much as are delighted to see Gunboat 57 VaiVai perform to its expectations, this evolution happened before the new management for Gunboat took over, and they don’t want to take any credit for an achievement that is primarily the work of VaiVai’s owner, Nigel Irens, and their team. Congratulations to them on a beautiful boat and a job well done.
October 20th, 2016 by admin
Yeah, it’s kind of ridiculous. And it costs 7 figures. And it would be significantly faster with less horsepower if it had some foils. But if you’re a motorhead as well as a mariner, you gotta give the Glidersport SS some props. For fuck’s sake, they say you can buy it with 3400 horsepower for a 3.5 second 0-60 time (same as a Ferrari F50) and a top speed over 96 knots, though we’re not so sure we’d like to be aboard what looks a bit like a wing at 100 knots…
October 14th, 2016 by admin