Confused? This is a shot of the very rare ‘reverse mine’ captured on Kiwi composite company C-Tech’s 18ft skiff foredeck mounted camera during product testing of CT PlateBattens on Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf.
This is all part of the R&D process for C-Tech that specialises in making performance battens. CEO and composites expert Alex Vallings is on a mission of continual development with the latest materials and technology to create the perfect product to stand up to the harsh reality of high-performance sailing. It is a little known fact that most boats on the water at the top of their game have some form of C-Tech product on board.
The product range includes masts, spars, sail-battens, sail hardware, spinnaker snuffers, carbon tube and numerous other sexy black things. These products are highly sought after in the skiff, dinghy, multihull, monohull, super yacht, America’s Cup, Vendée Globe, and Volvo Ocean Race circles.
The company sets itself apart from competitors with its mastery of laminating prepreg carbon fibre around male mandrels to scarily accurate specifications. The result is ultra-durable products with the highest flexural strength-to-weight ratio available on the market. Having worked with many winning race teams, the experience and knowledge gained is passed on to every customer through C-Techs offerings. Everything from carbon tube to complete customised solutions can be catered for.
The recent addition of a 1.4m diameter x 15m long pressure and temperature controlled autoclave opens up a number of manufacturing possibilities – including projects outside of the marine industry.
And the result of that ‘reverse mine’ … thanks to all the R&D no boat damage but three broken lads!