Weee don't need no steenkeeng professionals!
I actually intend to build this, as a 1/12 scale RC model. It won't be built full size unless I win the lottery or something, but it should
be BUILDABLE and PRACTICAL built full-size in case I do, or anyone else cares to. The real purpose of this exercise is to just
manipulate and massage the parameters and find the best set of compromises that will fit the following requirements:
1. A fairly fast cruiser. Speed is not the essential thing, but it is a consideration. The boat should be capable of a consistent 9kt
speed in any reasonable wind
at most points of sail. Doesn't have to be a flying surfboard... then it wouldn't be a cruiser at all.
2. Living space is important, but some reasonable sacrifices can be made. The design should be practical for living aboard
for long-term cruising for a couple or maybe a threeple, up to and including circumnavigating in a timely and comfortable fashion.
There should be room for entertaining a like number of guests at dockside or anchorage, or on a day sail.
3. Good maneuverability, especially tacking and sailing close-hauled, common weaknesses in many hardcore cruisers.
4. Length about 48 feet long LOA
, a decent length that should give true bluewater performance and at least as much room down
below as a more serious 40 footer, but not so long that a slip would cost an arm and a leg and maybe another body part or two.
5. Beam just under 12', to reduce the hassles involved with trucking the hull
to a launch site.
6. Reasonably shallow draft
, like around 6'.
7. Air draft
of under 65' to pass under most modern highway bridges in the U.S.
8. Ease of handling, particularly for single-handing. Decent tracking, easy self-steering. Lines led to cockpit
operations on deck
in bad weather
9. Low HP requirements, for motoring at 1/2 to 2/3 hull speed
10. Survivability in a grounding, knockdown, or rollover
11. Floatation even in a massively flooded condition. Not unsinkable as in "Titanic", but unsinkable as in cut in half with a
chainsaw and both pieces still float. Flotation as in stick with the boat even if there is a 20 foot hole in the side, cause it will float
better than the life raft.
12. Economical construction, maintenance
, and operation, including the greatest practical independence from fossil fuel
13. Self-contained independance including watermaking or catchment, alternative power generation, and simple user repairs
14. Easy scaleability of design, with dimensions that can be arrived at mathematically for rapid computer assisted layout of
frames, etc. I actually envision a program that the user could use to customize the hull
design after inputting and adjusting
parameters. Enter your length, beam, molded depth
, tumblehome, bow flare, rocker, keel
length, position, depth
, sweep, overhang
at bow and stern, sheer, camber, etc and it spits out a complete set of coordinates for lofting the frames and a suggested mast
step position and weight of ballast.
15. A BIG battery
bank, batteries doubling as ballast. Electric
or hybrid electric propulsion
would then be an option. Too many
electric boats are simply overloaded with batteries, or else the bank is too small. Plus it is just nice to have lots of batts for
household conveniences. Even dead batteries make good ballast.
16. An absence of explosive or highly flammable fuels or other substances.
17. Ease of getting ashore and getting guests or officials to the boat.
, including secure storage
19. Good heavy duty closures. True marine
grade watertight doors, hatches, windows/portholes, and vents.
As your posts come in and I read them and as consensus is reached on various details, I will compile what we have and update
The design itself will be the property of all of us, and of nobody in particular. Call it the Open Source Cruiser. (OSC) It will be there
for anyone to use, for pleasure or for profit. Think of it as the Friendship Sloop
of the 21st century.
The classic cruiser of the Dreadnought/Westsail/Tahiti Ketch
type is great for running free where the wind
happens to be going.
They are tough as nails and will out-survive their skippers and crews. BUT... isn't it lovely to be able to point well, to make
respectable progress to windward if that is where the desired destination
lies? Isn't it nice to be able to put the motor
not crank it up again until docking
time? Those classic old designs are out for this project
. I don't want to be somewhere and say
to myself, I would like to be THERE, but I can't get there from here unless I go all the way around the world. OTOH the modern
cruiser/racer with it's fat flat stern section really pounds, and it sucks to lose keel
bulbs and stuff. They can be kinda scary surfing
down big waves. All boats are an exercise in compromise, and always have been. I want us to do the same old compromising, but
keeping in mind the lessons we have learned over the last 40 years about what has worked for us and what hasn't.
For the purpose of keeping this process organized and orderly, I am dividing the process up into steps. I hope we can hold off on
doing something in like step 26 while we are still delibarating on say step 3.
Phase 1. Overall extreme dimensions.
Phase 2. Side/profile view. Sheer, overhangs, rocker, etc.
Phase 3. Main Frame cross section, hull and deck
Phase 4. Stern cross section.
Phase 5. Keel and rudder
Phase 6. Cockpit
or pilothouse configuration
Phase 7. Mast
placement and a tentative sail plan, standing rigging
Phase 8. Propulsion
, power generation, and electrical
Phase 9. Plumbing
Phase 10. Ventilation systems
Phase 11. Galley
Phase 12. Refrigeration
Phase 13. Tankage
Phase 14. Ballast, trim, loadlines and stability
Phase 15. Operating systems. Halyards, sheets
, winches, tracks, travelers, windlass
Phase 16. Dinghy
carriage, launching, and recovery.
Phase 17. Navigation
Phase 18. Safety
and lifesaving systems, and compliance with applicable regulations
Phase 19. Overall cabin
Phase 20. Actual construction methods. Male mold
, female mold
, glass on frame, whatever.
Phase 21+ All the details we are gonna argue about after the first 20 phases.
I anticipate this process to take at least a year. I don't see how we could rush it quicker and do a good job. As we go along, I am
sure we will have to go back and re-think and adjust the results of earlier phases to accomodate the later ones.
So in the next post I will kick it off with Phase 1 preliminary overview.