At the risk of being repetitive, we thought you might like another look at the highest form of engine room art, this time FPB 64-6 Grey Wolf. Read the rest »
Landing at Whangerei International Airport news awaited that the long spell of pleasant New Zealand weather had finally broken down and strong gale to storm force winds with heavy rain were forecast, exactly what we had asked Circa Marine to arrange. As you can see from the lead photo, these new seas, onshore in angle and so reflected back, were steep and confused. A perfect day for testing. Note: at the end of this blog is a short video.Read the rest »
Todd Rickard is in New Zealand working with the owners of FPB 64-3, Iron Lady, Pete and Debbie Rossin. Todd is busy with both testing the boat and bringing the owners up to speed on handling and systems, but snuck in a few photos to keep us all appraised of what is happening. Speaking of which, if you look closely at the lead photo just to the left of center you will see FPB 64-4, Osprey, coming in from a builder’s trial.Read the rest »
The second day of sea trials for Iron Lady has come and gone with unfortunately calm conditions. However, this is a chance to get deep water data and put some hours on the systems. She us running in these photos at 10.4 knots, turning 2000 RPM, with a pleasingly clean wake. There are a series of photos following, perhaps providing a degree of solace for Steeler fans.Read the rest »
The basic dock check having been completed and stabilizers initialized,its time to see what she’ll do. The series of photos which follow have Iron Lady at about 34 metric tons / 75,000 pounds. She is doing approximately nine knots (instruments are yet to be zeroed in).Read the rest »
Circa have sent us some initial fuel burn, speed, and engine loading data for the second FPB 64. This information was collected with the boat at about 80% payload, in light winds, and shallow water of the river that runs into Whangerie.Read the rest »
Sea trials for the second FPB 64, Sarah-Sarah, are coming along. She now has 25 hours on her engine and she will shortly be ready to turn over to her new owners. So far the punch list is short. We thought a few photos might be of interest.Read the rest »
If you are just joining us, and are looking at the FPB64 Avatar Final Trial photos for the first time, we suggest you take these blogs in order. You will find at the end of each blog a link to our high res photo server which will allow you to view these remarkable photos full screen.
Links for the three articles, in order, are below.
Part one is here.
Part two will be found here.
Part three is here.
For the associated slide shows, with versions of the photos that will play full screen, see the links below.
Part one slide show is here.
Part two slide show is here.
Part three slide show is here.
Since launching we’ve had master aerial photographer Ivor Wilkins on standby for the right conditions to shoot the first FPB 64. The day before Avatar was due to depart for Vila in Vanuatu the appropriate wind and sea state arrived. The photos which follow (with a link at the end to high res versions) were taken in post severe depression conditions.
While the first set of Final Trial photos represented the worst of the conditions, in the real world, even in gale force winds, you don’t encounter an unending succession of such seas. This next set of photos, taken during the same shoot, represent more of a norm. We’ll start with downwind, since that is clearly the most fun.Read the rest »
We’ve now received a few selected images from Ivor Wilkins in high resolution (the source files are 60mb each!), so we are able to crop in really tight and dissect what is going on. We’ll start with this shot and look at the bow and stern a little closer (if you are just joining us there are two preceding blogs which should be read first. At the end of each is a link to a slide show that will allow you to study these photos full screen).Read the rest »
There are all sorts of ways of calculating fuel burn and range under power. You can use just the power requirements of the boat, add in (or not) requirements for electrical and hydraulic, consider adverse weather (or assume smooth water), and allow for the boat getting lighter as it burns its fuel load (or keep it heavy as a fudge factor). The data we presented in the previous post was based on smooth water and no wind. We’ve now massaged this further to show range with different allowances.Read the rest »
We’ve got a few more hours of experience in waves with the FPB 64 and it is becoming apparent that she will benefit comfort wise from being at the heavy end of her displacement range. This means making fresh water as fuel is burned to keep her heavy if the sea state is uncomfortable. As the previous information we have posted was at half load, we thought this update was due.Read the rest »
One of the design aspects which requires careful attention is the water flow towards and then off the stern. A hull like the FPB 64 can handle a certain amount of immersion of the transom and still be efficient, but if the water release isn’t clean excessive drag is the result.
The photos in this blog were taken at full load, running at 1600 RPM at about 9.5 knots. The FPB 64 has a out eight knots of true wind behind her and a four to six foot (1.2 to 1.85m) swell adding a little push.Read the rest »
Docking a new boat for the first time in a tight marina is always going to increase the blood pressure a bit. Doing it in a 65 foot / 20m yacht in a fairway less than two boat lengths wide with a beam wind makes it even more interesting. Mike Parker is at the controls, and while he is an experienced boat and sailplane driver, the tension shows (the public was watching).Read the rest »
We have all four sets of FPB 64 Owners here now, plus three visitors who are thinking about joining us, all of whom have flown long hours for the experience. It has been a busy time for all of us.
Yesterday we concentrated on learning about close quarters maneuvering and checking motion characteristics in short chop.Read the rest »
We’re starting to get into the meat of the sea trials, checking cruise speed against RPM, fuel burn rates, and motion. The screen above is one of 16 available from the NMEA 2000 Maretron display. This system is tied to the Deere engine monitor and amongst other things shows fuel burn, mileage, and in this case engine RPM and speed over ground from the GPS. Of particular interest is the fuel burn data.Read the rest »
Although the bare aluminum exterior is functional it also works aesthetically. One of the keys to this are stainless steel details which offset the bare aluminum. As Circa have their own stainless fabrication facility, it provides a wonderful opportunities to demonstrate their prowess in this regard.Read the rest »
The first FPB 64 carries a 13 foot long by 6.5 foot wide inflatable. Powered with a 50HP Yamaha it has the space and grunt to carry four divers and their gear at speed to distant dive spots. But how does it work with aft deck layout, and during launch and retrieval?Read the rest »
Lindsay Turvey sent us this photo of the first time away from dock for Avatar (years ago Lindsay took part in a Queen’s Birthday storm rescue and sent some amazing sea state photos which are in Surviving the Storm). The FPB 64 is obviously floating high, but is she high enough?Read the rest »
Although we have many tools with which to analyze design efficiency one of our favorites is looking at the bow and stern waves. This has to be done in the context of the design objectives, hull loading, and speed length ratio at which the hull is running.Read the rest »
There are numerous propeller variables in displacement yacht design. Given the restrictions of draft, and the massive drag to be overcome with most ocean crossing yachts, props are forced into a predictable pattern.
However, the efficiency of the FPB, and the low cruise power needs, allow a variety of options.Read the rest »
Although we have shown you the fins in the past this is the first chance we have had to show them in an uncluttered environment. The rudder is enormous by normal standards and in close proximity to the propeller. This offers numerous benefits:Read the rest »