Thursday, April 23, 2009

Corsair US Nationals see a new French design

Randy Smythe (Olympic silver medalist for the US) is sailing his French-designed Chinese-built Multi23 trimaran at the US Corsair Nationals at the moment. The nationals are hosted this year by Pensacola Yacht Club. Mike Leneman (US importer for the Multi23) makes some comments about the new boat in this article from the Pensacola News Journal.

Photos from this year's event are not online yet, but you can check out the gallery by Peter Macgowan from last year's event for great shots of trimarans racing

Trimaran Deed of Gift race getting closer?

Judging from the previous antics of the protagonists for the 33rd America's Cup contest, this could all go pear-shaped, but today the Alinghi team of Société Nautique de Genève announced that they accept the challenge from Golden Gate Yacht Club, and are prepared to meet GGYC on the water for a Deed of Gift race in 90-foot trimarans. You can see their announcement here. If it ever happens, this will be mega-trimaran cool!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New designs: Has Ian Farrier done it again with the F-22?

Yes he has.

(Image courtesy of Farrier Marine)

Over the last 20 years Ian Farrier has been leading a quiet revolution in the sailing world, converting thousands of sailors into worshippers of “trimaran cool” with his innovative folding system and trailable trimaran designs. Following hits like the original Trailer-Tri 680 (hundreds of which have been built by amateurs), the “beach tri” Tramp, and the USA Sailboat Hall of Fame winning F-27, he has now launched the entry-level F-22. I’m willing to make the armchair prediction that the F-22 will open up a whole new generation of trimaran owners with its economical package and solid pedigree.

(I also have to admit that I liked it so much, I now have a set of plans and I’m s l o w l y building one myself)

The F-22 cruiser and its all-carbon F-22R racer sibling are highly-developed designs, benefiting from Ian’s many years of folding trimaran experience and incorporating the latest design and construction features from some of his larger boats. His strategy for offering construction plans for home-builders before his own production is established will get the design off and running faster, and allowing only factory-built beams and beam mounts (although more expensive than home-built beams) will ensure that buyers of home-built boats can trust the integrity of these critical structural components.

With a length of 6.96 metres (22 feet 10 inches) and a beam of 5.51 metres (18 feet 1 inch) or 2.5 metres (8 feet 2 inches) folded, the F-22 may be built in numerous configurations – the standard cruising cabin with or without an aft cabin, a cuddy-cabin day-sailer with or without the aft cabin (resulting in a very roomy cockpit for the size of the boat), and the option of a sliding daggerboard or pivoting centreboard (offset slightly to free up leg-room inside). The standard cabin actually offers more interior room than the earlier F-24, with the 3rd generation beams taking up very little internal volume. Another interesting option on the F-22 is a boomless main, which reduces weight and enables an un-cluttered cockpit with the traveler mounted a long way aft. The sail may still be slab-reefed using cam-cleats at the foot of the leech.

The F-22 is constructed in temporary female frames from foam sandwich, using Farrier’s “vertical strip planking” process. To qualify for the F-22R designation, the sandwich should be laminated with carbon fiber, and a carbon-fibre wing-mast fitted. Target weights for the F-22 and F-22R are between 590 - 680kg (1,300 - 1,500 lbs). The F-22R also has a taller mast and more sail area - 35.9m² (386 ft²) compared with 30.2m² (325 ft²) for higher performance.

What will an F-22 cost you? Farrier’s latest estimate is around US$45,000 for a sail-away home-built boat, depending on which design options you select and how economically you can source your materials. Of course the F-22R would cost more on top of this due to the more expensive materials. With so many options to select and careful purchasing of materials you may get away with a little less, but this estimate appears realistic (based on what I’ve spent already and what I have yet to spend!).

There is a great deal more information on Ian’s F-22 web page.

With 80 boats already under construction and 4 already on the water, this looks like a new boat with a great future that may open up a new market for entry-level trailable trimarans. That’s trailable trimaran cool!

(Image courtesy of Farrier Marine)

Friday, April 10, 2009

First Arabian 100 trimaran heading for Oman (by freighter)

Now that Musandam (former B&Q / Castorama) has crossed the finish line in Oman, the Sail Oman team are concentrating on the delivery of their first Arabian 100 class racing trimaran. Constructed by Boatspeed in Australia, the first boat is now complete (although not yet assembled) and is now on the deck of a freighter en-route to Muscat. You can see the final stages of construction at the Boatspeed webcam. If this first boat is joined by others in the class, it will be a spectacular sight to watch them racing!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

She gets to race! BOR 90 trimaran will race in Deed of Gift match.

(image by Lymeydal)

For around 6 months, the team from BMW Oracle Racing have been conducting sea trials and tuning their new 27 metre (90 foot) “BOR 90” trimaran near San Diego. And following a ruling by the New York State Court of Appeals in favour of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Yacht Club, it looks like the boat will get to race! (the ruling is surprisingly readable, and sheds light on some interesting aspects of AC history – you can view a copy at the BYM News website).
We have yet to see the new trimaran that Alinghi are also building, but this Deed of Gift match-race between two of the largest and most technical trimarans ever constructed will be a huge boost to the “cool-appeal” of trimarans.
As the two teams prepare to go head-to-head in boats which have never contested an Americas’ Cup event - the only previous multihull to contest an AC race was Dennis Connor’s 18 metre (60 foot) Stars & Stripes wing-sailed catamaran in 1988 - we will see many new names not familiar to regular AC fans. The BMW Oracle Racing activities are being coordinated by French trimaran guru Franck Cammas (holder of 4 speed records on Groupama 3), and the boat has been designed by French multihull experts Van Peteghen Lauriot Prévost.
VPLP have followed a conservative design approach (apart from the incredible size of the boat) - she is essentially an enlarged version of the ORMA 60 class trimarans, featuring carbon-fibre construction, canting mast, curved asymmetric lifting foils in the floats, triple rudders and a Bruce ratio of 1 (beam divided by length).