Impressive yacht, no question... The Amels are always 'interesting', if nothing else... ;-)
The placement of the saildrive
is unique, no wonder she needs retractable thrusters at both the bow, and stern... Nothing could ever possibly go wrong with those, of course ;-)
But what catches my eye, is one of the compromises involved in having that stern garage... Look at how short the rudder
post inside the hull
is, greatly increasing the lever arm of such a critical component. No doubt Amel has engineered it superbly, but still, IMHO that arrangement is less than ideal. On my little tub, I really like the idea that the upper bearing of my rudder
post is as high as practical, at the level of the cockpit
On a boat with a single
rudder, a dinghy
garage is gonna represent a design challenge, for sure... I think the Hunter
54 is often considered the first medium-sized boat to adopt the feature, and they did it by placing the rudder post forward of the compartment... I'e never sailed one, but by most accounts I've heard, that boat was one hell of a handful to steer in sporty conditions off the wind
, with that rudder placed where it was... ;-)
I've not had the best of luck with transom garages, myself... I used to run a Trintella 47 years ago, one of the first boats to generate all those "Ooohs and Ahhhs" when exhibited at the Annapolis
show, and the operation of the hydraulic transom door was demonstrated... it never quite generated the rounds of APPLAUSE
that Beneteau's SenseBoat did years later with their debut of the 360 Dock
and Go, but there was no shortage of folks who still went gaga over it... ;-)
I used to run the boat down to Key West
for the winter, and one year I arrived shortly before Thanksgiving... Pulling into the slip at the Galleon, I only had about a day to get the boat cleaned up, and drive up to Miami
in time to catch a flight out to Phoenix to spend the holiday with my mom...
Underway, stuff like fenders, shore power
cord and such all got stowed in that garage... However, when I pressed the button to open it for the final time on that delivery
, nothing happened... Ooops...
So, I start poking around in the shallow cockpit
lockers in search of the wire leads, or fusing, anything... As best I can tell with a multimeter, the switch itself is operational, and getting power to it... The wiring
simply disappears into the garage space... All of the workings and machinery of the transom door are contained WITHIN
the garage, there is no way to access them from either the cockpit, or the aft stateroom... Furthermore, there is no provision for opening the door manually...
The owner told me when he got on the phone
with the guys at the yard over in the Netherlands
, and described the problem, there was a 'lengthy pause'
on the other end of the line...
The door eventually had to be pried open, basically with a crowbar... Despite their best efforts, considerable damage ensued, and the owner got a fresh Awlgrip job out of Trintella as a result...
KISS only applies to puny boats like mine, I suppose...