To A New Paradigm With FPB

FPB 97 – Code Name “Wicked” – Updated

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Slicing through the barriers of what can and cannot be done with a large yacht, the Wicked FPB 97 redefines the cruising paradigm.

In Reference to FPB 83 Wind Horse:
“The 83ft-long (25m) wave-piercer…could easily be mistaken for the spawn of the Royal Navy with its unpainted battleship grey, all-aluminum body. But that day, in those conditions, it was the only boat that I would have wanted to climb aboard to face the English Channel.”

Motor Boat & Yachting

  • Generator-free at anchor
  • Crew optional voyaging
  • 5000+ NM range at 11.7 knots
  • Extreme weather survival capability, including capsize recovery
  • Unprecedented interior design
  • Five foot draft, and the ability to dry out on tidal rivers
  • Toughest structure ever offered in a series built yacht
  • Designed and constructed for minimum maintenance

The first FPB 97 is now undergoing sea trials. In the interim, we’ve put together a detailed look at the thinking behind this Wicked new FPB. For up to date exterior renderings, click here. For the latest construction/sea trial updates, click here.

If you could create the ultimate yacht for long distance voyaging, one suited to those wonderful cruising destinations like Tierra Del Fuego and French Polynesia, or experience the Arctic wonders at 79 degrees North in Svalbard, and do it comfortably in secure surroundings with minimum hassle, what would this entail?

  • Heavy weather capability, including the ability to self-right from a capsize
  • Strength to deal with the inevitable mistakes that occur
  • Speed to keep you out of harm’s way weather-wise, and to shorten passage time
  • Physical and emotional comfort on passage so that voyaging is a pleasure, rather than something to be endured
  • Efficient systems, installed for ease of access and maintenance in primitive environments
  • Shallow draft and the ability to dry out on tidal rivers or grids
  • Minimal carbon footprint
  • Massive storage space for spares, emergency gear, supplies, so that operation for long periods of time away from the first world supply chain does not entail hardship
  • Living space that is open visually, but still works well at sea
  • Dinghy storage, launching, and retrieval system that is 100% reliable, and usable in a rolling anchorage
  • Operation and maintenance engineered so a couple can, if they so choose, operate on their own without crew

Sound like the perfect yacht? For the past 35 years we’ve been building to precisely these parameters. Our Deerfoot, Sundeer, and Beowulf series of sailing yachts are known the world over as the best yachts for couples intending to circumnavigate. The FPB series of ocean-crossing motor yachts have moved the goal posts even further.

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The Wicked FPB 97 represents the apogee of this cycle. Simply put, it is the most comfortable, secure, and efficient yacht that has ever been created for long distance voyaging, and she gives her owners the option of cruising with or without crew.

This introduction is intended as an outline for understanding both the Wicked FPB 97 in particular and our approach to yacht design in general. Each section contains a sidebar with links to articles, slide shows, and videos pertinent to that topic.

Able to withstand extreme conditions, with self-righting capability, it has the toughest structure ever offered in a series-built yacht.”
-Boat International

For an in-depth look at the Black Swan theory of yacht design and construction click here.

Detailed post about safety factors here.

Black Swan Philosophy

A few words are in order about the Black Swan approach to yacht design and construction. The Black Swan theory is the concept of a one-time Wall Street floor trader, Nassim Nicolas Taleb, to explain hard-to-predict but inevitable events that occur in the world of finance, that have devastating consequences. The specifics are generally not knowable in advance. But what can be foreseen, with a high degree of certainty, is that something is going to occur for which the establishment has not prepared.

We go cruising to relax, with perhaps a controllable dose of adventure. The normal risk factors are not great, and can be dealt with by a well-schooled crew with a seaworthy yacht. But what about Black Swan events? Although it is human nature to ignore the possibility of disaster, we believe it is better to be prepared for a Black Swan scenario, and then go cruising secure in the knowledge that we are on a yacht constructed to handle the very worst.

Interior Design Principles and the FPB 97

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“…The concept deserves consideration from anyone who wants to cruise offshore over long distances.”
–Yachting Magazine

Living with 360 degree views.

Seagoing ergonomics.

Video of entertaining during a gale force sea trial upwind.

The FPB 97 combines a Great Room where you can live while running the vessel, the unique Matrix Deck which is a combination of penthouse and flying bridge, and a wonderful owners’ suite on the Accomodations Deck that is full width and 7.7m/25 ft long, in an interior that makes passages as inviting as sitting at anchor. The three interior decks are all positioned well aft, in the region of minimized motion, for the most comfortable sea-going experience.

There are a number of interior design principles at work throughout the FPB 97 that are key to successful cruising:

  • Visually open spaces–360 degree views in the case of the Matrix Deck and Great Room–that have wonderful natural lighting
  • Furniture designed to minimize visual obstructions, enhance communications, and at the same time hold you in place at sea
  • Removable staple rails and furniture level hand rails to further enhance security at sea
  • Large volumes of storage space for everyday use with drawers and shelves, plus significant bulk storage provisions

The Matrix Deck

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The Matrix Deck in detail.

A major design innovation is revealed in the Matrix Deck, a seagoing union of fly bridge and penthouse. 360-degree views are combined with a layout that works equally well for watch keeping, lounging, or entertaining, within a space that can be both open to the outside or enclosed, heated, or air-conditioned. At sea, the lines of sight are excellent through 90% of your potential view field, and by moving a few feet you cover the other 10%. You are positioned in the zone of maximum comfort for head seas. When conning in difficult circumstances, you not only have good sight lines, but with some or all of the windows open you are in touch with the surroundings in a manner that cannot be duplicated inside. Couple this high degree of function with the ambiance of a lovely salon, or tropical lanai, and you have the truly unique experience that is the Matrix Deck. To get a feel for its scale, take a look at the Great Room of the FPB 83, Wind Horse – the Matrix Deck is larger.

The Great Room

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Detailed article on the FPB 97 interior.

Video of FPB 83 Wind Horse on a 12 day passage.

The now-familiar battle-worthy look of the FPB yachts hides a beautifully crafted interior from the outside world. The Great Room concept has been a key ingredient of the FPB concept since the beginning. A combination of work, living, and watch standing center, the Great Room is one of the design features which makes short-handed cruising on the FPB 97 so enjoyable. These attributes pay dividends at anchor too. Regardless of what you are doing–preparing a meal, working at your desk on a web post, or relaxing with a book–everyone has the same wonderful views.

Wicked FPB 97 Great Room Plan 10

When standing watch on passage, you can see behind as well as ahead of you. And when the time comes for a meal or a snack, you maintain situational awareness. Standing in the galley you can see forward, abeam, and aft.

And if too much togetherness is not a benefit, then some of the crew can retire to the Matrix Deck, where the views are even more stunning.

Accomodations Deck

FPB 97 Owners Suite Plan

If you think the Matrix Deck and Great Room are cool, wait till you see the owners’ suite on the Accomodations Deck. Encompassing 25% of the hull’s length (7.7m/25 ft long) and spanning the full beam, the suite is positioned well aft for minimal motion. The head of the king sized walk-around bed is directly on the longitudinal center of the waterline. There are four large hull windows and several deck hatches that bring in copious amounts of natural light. Open-air ventilation from four silently powered vents keeps the air fresh and relatively cool until the point where air conditioning is warranted.

There is a full width walk-in closet, a large sofa, combination sauna/bath, and of course a TV which, when not in use, is hidden by a panel that can have a piece of art affixed.

All of this takes place within an open floor plan that has a lovely sense of spaciousness. With the engine room a full 25 feet/7.7 meters away and separated by two massive bulkheads, you know the only sound you will ever hear underway is the sea softly passing down the hull.

The foyer off the stairwell is an ideal location for an office, with desk space for a pair of large monitors, storage space and ship’s library.

The guest accomodations have generous heads attached ,each with a shower/bath, desk, and substantial storage.

The systems room, all the way aft, provides excellent storage, a pair of bunks for crew or overflow guests, with a wet head en suite. This area acts as a sound buffer, and what little machinery noise escapes the engine room will be substantially attenuated before it gets through the two sets of bulkheads between here and the guest sleeping cabins.

Capsize of megayacht Yogi, and a brief discussion of yacht stability and capsize recovery.

Video of FPB 64 Iron Lady heavy weather sea-trials.

The importance of boat speed in reducing weather risks.

Video of FPB 64 Osprey in storm force conditions.

Crew comments on Osprey‘s storm force experience.

Osprey storm wave analysis.

FPB 83 Wind Horse strong gale video.

Heavy weather issues.

FPB 64 Iron Lady passage in a gale.

FPB 64 Avatar Force 9 upwind passage.

The importance of steering control.

Heavy Weather Capability

The recent capsize of the 60-meter yacht Yogi, in moderate gale conditions, has focused attention on the vulnerability of yachts that conform to the MCA Ly2 stability specifications. With a limit of positive stability at between 55 and 70 degrees, if they meet the wrong wave at the wrong time, or are disabled and lying abeam of the seas, the risk of permanent capsize is significant. Most smaller yachts do not even meet the MCA stability code requirements.

The FPBs are all self-righting, the only ocean-voyaging yachts with this capability.

Several characteristics of the FPBs make it unlikely that owners will ever put their stability curve to the ultimate test. First, they are able to maintain a fast average ocean crossing speed: in the case of the FPB 97, 11.7 to 12 knots. High average speeds mean shorter passage times and reduced weather risk. The FPBs also offer a more comfortable ride at higher speeds, which means their owners pay no penalties for arriving sooner, other than a modest increase in fuel burn.

FPB steering control, even surfing downwind in big seas, makes it possible to run off ahead of dangerous storm systems. And when caught on the beam by a breaking sea, FPBs skid sideways, dissipating the force of the wave before it can deliver a significant blow.

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FPB 64 Iron Lady after pounding on a reef for 2 hours.

FPB structural engineering basics.

FPB Structural Basics

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“Having a boat that can deal with whatever might happen—no matter what—provides a mental comfort level that defines their view of happy sailing.”
–Bill Parlatore, Passagemaker Magazine

If you spend much time poking around with boats, eventually you are going to run aground, you will be hitting things, there will come a time when a rough commercial vessel drags anchor and bangs into your hull. The FPBs are designed for this life. They are tolerant of operator error. All of which leads to the peace of mind that gets you off the beaten path.

There are several common structural factors to all of these yachts:

  • Massive “stem bar” for collision resistance, as in the photo above
  • A collision bulkhead and at least two other fully watertight bulkheads
  • Hull framing and plating to twice the Lloyd’s Special Service rule stiffness requirements
  • Bottom plating with a minimum thickness of 12mm/15/32in
  • Double bottom between forepeak and engine room watertight bulkheads
  • Massively strong windows (19mm /3/4in)
  • Designed for drying out
  • Fully protected props
  • Spade rudder(s) on shafts to twice the Lloyd’s rule requirement
  • Over-sized stabilizer actuators
  • Stabilizer actuators in watertight coffer dams
  • Over-sized prop shafts
  • Prop skegs designed for grounding loads

Read in detail about the FPB 97′s integrated systems approach here.

Read about the 97′s engine room and systems annex.

A more efficient approach to ventilation and air conditioning.

Design & Systems Efficiency Leads to Cruising Freedom

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If you want to cruise to distant ports with complex, modern yachts, you are faced with a dilemma. Systems complexity, fuel burn, high maintenance demands, and crew requirements limit freedom of movement. This turns life afloat into a compromise between the owners’ cruising dreams, what the crew wants, and where service technicians can be found. With the FPB 97, owners have the option of going with or without crew. Combine this with enormous tankage, systems that allow you to be totally free of fossil fuel consumption at anchor, and huge storage capacity, and suddenly you have the ability to sustain yourself for long periods of time away from civilization.

Wicked FPB 97 Engine Systems room plan 50

Simple, reliable systems with backups in place, an extensive list of spare parts and tools, plus a detailed vessel operations manual, and access to all critical systems for periodic inspection and maintenance, mean more time spent cruising, and the ability to deal with problems when they do occur. Add in a sub-5ft/1.5m draft, the toughest hull construction ever offered in a series-built yacht, a double bottom and four watertight bulkheads, plus a tough, unpainted aluminum exterior, and the FPB 97 owners have the ability to cruise where they want, when they want, and with whom they want. It is an enticing formula.

 

Cruising on the FPB 97: Do You Really Need Crew?

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Cruising as a couple: a detailed analysis.

Dinghy launching and retrieval system.

The importance of lines of sight.

From the beginning of the design cycle of the FPB 97, operation by a couple without crew has been a primary goal. And if crew is carried, that it need not be for more than help with watch standing, cleaning, and keeping an eye on things when the owners are not on board.

“Impossible,” you might be thinking. But we can tell you from long personal experience, and observing our clients, that running the FPB 97 as a couple is a realistic goal. From dinghy launching and retrieval to standing watch on passage, to keeping systems operating, this Wicked FPB 97 will be easier to operate and less work to maintain than most smaller trawlers.

Take the windows, for example. There are a lot of them. But with their vertical position and smooth exterior it will be quicker to wash and squeegee these windows than those of the FPB 64.

For operating in close quarters the most important issue is visibility, so that the helmsperson can see the ends of the boat, the dock alongside, and judge distance to other vessels. The excellent natural sight lines of the FPB 97, coupled with the docking platforms, allows the helmsperson to judge distances for him or herself, without the necessity of a crew member calling these distances.

The six self-tailing electric winches simplify difficult docking situations, such as stern-to moorings.

And even if you want to have crew aboard, the FPB 97 makes their job easier, reduces the number required to a couple at the most, or more normally a single person. And it gives you the option of running by yourself should that become more pleasant.

“This would have to be the most intriguing offshore cruising powerboat I have come across. Conceptually, Steve Dashew has possibly developed a new paradigm for offshore cruising…”
–Sea Spray Magazine

Part One of a foundation to successful cruising.

Part Two of a foundation to successful cruising.

To read all posts about the FPB 97, click here.

A Foundation for Successful Cruising

If you want to have the most positive cruising experience, one which gives you the incentive to cut those dock lines, there needs to be a clear set of priorities for how the boat is going to be used. These range from cruising grounds, to space allocation for long-term stores, the way systems are engineered, draft, structure, interior layout, crew size, even the appearance you project to the outside world are considerations. The FPB series are engineered and constructed for long distance voyaging in less-than-sublime environments, with maximum attention to mitigating risk factors.

The resulting yachts are extremely efficient, exceptionally comfortable, and without peer at sea, particularly in heavy weather. But we want to be up front, and tell you that these yachts are not for everybody.

On the other hand, if the concept of spending a day provisioning, updating your charts, and then heading off across the ocean without crew if the fancy strikes sounds appealing, then the Wicked FPB 97 is for you. If you want to be able to spend weeks at a time at anchor in some lovely tropical lagoon without running a generator, the FPB 97 is the answer. If you want the flexibility of moving quickly from the tropics to the splendor of Greenland, Svalbard or the South Georgia islands, there’s only one the FPB 97 is the ultimate tool. If you want to feel at home with the commercial vessels, give pause to the bad guys, and stand out from the rows of yachts in the marinas of the world, then this Wicked FPB 97 is your boat.

For even more answers, contact Todd Rickard, ToddR@setsail.com

The Wicked FPB 97 Business Model

The FPB 97 is being offered in the same highly efficient, turnkey basis that proved so successful with the FPB 64s. These Wicked FPBs come fully equipped: from electronics, to extensive tools and spares, to custom shorefast reels and high modulus line for tying up in difficult environments. The build standards, easily seen in the FPB 64s, and consistently maintained both at the visible and hidden levels, is at a level attained by only a select few custom yards. The cost to acquire a FPB 97, and the operating budget, are surprisingly modest.

For more information, contact Todd Rickard, ToddR@setsail.com

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To read all posts about the Wicked FPB 97, click here.

If you would like to learn more about Dashew Offshore, the way we build yachts, and our history, see the links below.

A Different Approach

Design Milestones

Video page

Find Out More About Steve & Linda’s Books

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Posted by Sarah.Dashew  (November 12, 2014)




23 Responses to “FPB 97 – Code Name “Wicked” – Updated”

  1. Patrick S Lasswell Says:
    So…we don’t get to eat at anchor? Or only “foods” absent in carbon content? Are there excreta constraints we should be aware of? Exhalation prohibitions? Carbon seems a frail reed to rest this strong design upon. Noise free at anchor? Works for me. Anchor at ease with high efficiency systems to help you enjoy your stay without a generator interfering? Probably too wordy. Stay your full welcome at anchor? Well, that invites invidious comparisons between guests and fish. You’ve got a design that appeals to smart people. Too many of them are going to know the open secret that solar, for all it’s advantages, is still a net carbon loss compared to efficient conventional systems. You’ve got a really strong application for solar energy, and God knows your designs are incredibly tested and trustworthy, but bringing in the carbon bogeyman is an excess of shorthand.

    [Reply]

    Rob Reply:

    And apparently one blinkered person, the juries in on the carbon advantage of solar panels, thin film takes 1-2 years to produce the energy used in its construction and conventional panels take 3-4 years. That’s when they’re offsetting the US average power grid as a whole. Small scale diesel generation that these panels would be offsetting is substantially less efficient than the grid. It is patently untrue that solar in this application, or on the national is a net carbon loss. http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy04osti/35489.pdf

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    Patrick S Lasswell Reply:

    How much does it cost in time, materials, and fresh water to clean them properly? What about in a pollen dense area? What about people like me who live downwind of Mt. St. Helens and the rest of the Cascade volcanic region? How many times can they be cleaned before they must be replaced? How long do they last? What kind of cost efficiency do they show in regions with tornadoes? How much does it cost to mount them? How much does it cost to keep the mounts intact? What’s their earthquake endurance? How much does it cost to store that energy for the hours of darkness, cloudy days, and winter? I’m willing to take Steve’s numbers as accurate because sails the miles, makes it work for himself, and has answered these kinds of questions already. My willingness to accept consensus science and subsidized development that appears to leave rather a lot of solar companies in the smoking rubble of bankruptcy is limited. The solar advocates can’t all be money launderers and frauds, but a whole lot of them demonstrably are. Steve is confident enough in the yields he’s seeing to develop a boat around solar accessibility, and I trust his integrity for this very expensive and carefully built craft. But the FPB series isn’t going to sit out bolted to the ground in tornado alley anytime soon. It isn’t going to be built by the lowest bidder seeking to provide a jobs program and kickbacks to local planning councils. Steve’s going to sweat the details on every weld on every boat. That kind of dedication just doesn’t scale when mixed with political advantage. Pity, but without those conditions, solar just does not make it as a terawatt source of energy.

    [Reply]

    Steve Dashew Reply:

    From our own experience years ago and from our present day research, the cleaning is a minor issue. As to subsidies, I don’t know of any friends of the current administration that have been successful in this business, but there are quite a few private companies that have done well.

  2. Michael Seng Says:
    Congratulations to the entire design team! Well done. Looking forward to hull #1 commencement! As always, thanks for bringing us along!

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  3. Lawrence Chamblin Says:
    I see you removed the “carbon free at anchor” from the list of benefits of the FPB 97. I assume you caved to Patrick S Lasswell’s criticism. Did you click on the link to his website? He has some pretty extreme views. Very disappointed that you would be so easily influenced. Maybe I’m in the minority among the people who frequent this website that I’m attracted to your boats because they’re “greener” than the competition.

    [Reply]

    Steve Dashew Reply:

    Howdy Lawrence: In fact, what influenced the change to which you refer was a question earlier this week about genset use on the FPB 97. The questioner did not understand that our point about carbon footprint meant no genset time. We thought it would be more understandable the way currently written.

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    Patrick S Lasswell Reply:

    Lawrence, About 100,000 of my neighbors used to work in the aluminum industry nearby until some innovative energy frauds created a situation where aluminum companies made more money re-selling their power instead of making anything meaningful. A good friend of mine put the first of the Enron traders in jail with evidence he discovered, but he couldn’t put anybody back to work. For the last four years I’ve seen windmills going down the road to get put up in the gorge, and industrial plants dependent on inexpensive, stable and abundant electricity shutting down. I’m sorry if my reporting on your future is frightening and extreme. I like Steve’s designs because he won’t keep gear that doesn’t work or include features that aren’t worth their weight. He’s honest and transparent about his design process and makes the numbers available for everyone to see. I genuinely wish that a tenth of the alternative energy advocates had a tenth of his integrity, but based on my experience and my hundred thousand neighbors looking for work, I’ve come to the conclusion that they do not make the grade. Storms are coming, and you’d be advised to hew closer to a more verifiable course. By the way, “easily inlfluenced?” I’ve been on Steve’s case for six months about solar matters, with probably 2,000 words of pretty defensible commentary. Disagree with me if you must, but do me the courtesy of acknowledging that I’m not a troll.

    [Reply]

    Steve Dashew Reply:

    OK Guys, no personal attacks please and lets move on to a different topic…

    [Reply]


  4. JLF Says:
    Love your boat. I suppose it is premature, but I’ve been trying to figure out the route for getting this boat home ( South Florida ). It looks like I’ll have to make the run from the Marquesas to the Panama Canal in one shot. Does this boat have the range for that, safety factors and all? Or perhaps an other route would be better?

    [Reply]

    Steve Dashew Reply:

    The route depends on what you want to do. Quickest way would be New Zealand to Panama via the 40s, then turning north around the Galapagos. An intermediate stop would be the Gambiers, wonderful high islands at the south end of the Tuamotus. With a little current and favorable winds you could make it to Panama without refueling with reserve. But both mentioned stops would have fuel. You might want to back off to 10.5 knots to reduce fuel burn until far enough along to be sure the weather was in a “normal” helpful pattern.

    [Reply]


  5. Rendering yachts on water - YachtForums.Com Says:
    [...] In their posts about the new FPB 97, the Dashews have many pictures where they've inserted renderings of the 97 into pictures that originally showed either the FPB 84 or in a couple cases the FPB 64. That's obviously the best way to deal with accurate wave patterns, but you may not have a large supply of pictures of similar boats (to your renderings) to work with. SetSail Blog Archive FPB 97 – Code Name “Wicked” [...]

  6. Daryl Lippincott Says:
    Wind generators or solar panels don’t make financial sense without the gov. subsidies but for cruisers they can be part of an overall energy system that seems reasonable if you can stand the noise and the up front cost. (Although one of my dock mates just put on some new blades on his wind generator that are very inoffensive.) I really like the “generator free at anchor”. I would think fuel will need to be somewhere around $6 a gallon for the panels to make sense purely from a cost per watt point of view. That will surely happen before this boat or the panels are worn out. One would also think that the solar panels will continue to get more efficient both per dollar and per square foot so having the system on the boat will make upgrading easy in the future. But more than that, it is easy to imagine a “Black Swan event” that makes fuel not just expensive but difficult to source. The ability to go someplace remote and live on very little fuel is very attractive.

    [Reply]


  7. Michael Jones Says:
    My take on the alternative energy comments here is that some are talking about solar or wind as if arguing a national or global policy while I’m only concerned (when at the Dashew’s website) for my own boating interests. I’m really attracted to everything that increases the true sense of independence. I would pay 3x or 4x for 2x the freedom. Just thinking about it feels liberating.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    That’s my take on it too. Not having to run generators as much reduces fuel use & extends time in remote areas. Also, it’s simply nicer sitting at anchor without a generator running. On a boat, solar or wing energy is a totally different issue.

    [Reply]


  8. Henrik Says:
    Why do you use wire handrails and not solid aluminum or stainless steel tubes?

    [Reply]

    Steve Dashew Reply:

    Solid rails are more subject to damage when rafting to other vessels and laying against pilings in less than calm harbors. Wire performs better in this environment.

    [Reply]


  9. Ben Woodford Says:
    Have you considered mounting a kite sail on any of the fpb family? Seems that in many situations it might reduce fuel use as well as making a dandy ‘get home’ system. Granted it takes power to use, but if the solar array keeps the batteries topped off that shouldn’t be a problem. Not sure how much the tackle and control systems for a kite sail weigh, so I don’t know how it would affect balance.

    [Reply]

    Steve Dashew Reply:

    We have looked at kite sails extensively as have several of our owners. Great fun, and potential boat speed with all that wind aloft. But launching, retrieval, and auto control are not yet solved for cruisers.

    [Reply]


  10. Shannon Says:
    I love the computer images. Very nice touch. I would love to see a video where you walk through the entire boat when that is possible. A video like that is the best way for me to get a feel for the size of a boat short of being there in person. I think lots of people appreciate the “boat show” tour. I am really excited seeing the progress of this 97, it’s a very impressive vessel on so many levels.

    [Reply]


  11. Shannon Says:
    Wow. All this talk of the efficiency & cost effectiveness of solar panels. Is overall cost really the big issue on a boat? It sure isn’t to me. What is important to me is the ability to sit at anchor quietly in remote areas without burning fuel. I am willing to pay a premium for that ability when the nearest gas station is 2,000 miles away. It would be worth it to me even if the system never pays for itself in overall savings. A peaceful day at anchor & having power without burning fuel in remote areas is the main benefit of the solar system. If it happens to eventually pay for itself in overall costs that’s just an added bonus.

    [Reply]

    Scott Webb Reply:

    Totally agreed.

    [Reply]

    John Rushworth Reply:

    I agree with Shannon and Scott. However here is my two pence worth.. As I think Steve said, solar is all about minimising generator run time at anchor, and to some extent I think we leave the green conversation aside. My small pure electric propulsion sailing yacht (with a standby 1kW Honda silent type portable generator) would love the space for as much solar as possible. Anything in my case helps, and the solar panel cost effectiveness numbers seem to scale up to boats like the FPBs. As regards the cost. The payback time for me, subject to how much day/weekend sailing I do, is but a few years when the boat is kept on a mooring. But if I keep the boat in a marina, then I can’t compete with the 20p/kWhr the marina charges for electricity and the payback time goes up to the more usual 20 to 25 years. However when I add in the cost of a day visit to a marina at say £20 per visit to recharge, it is still cheaper for me to run the generator on a mooring to recharge, if I’m not prepared to wait the two or so weeks it would take the solar to do it. But the noise. Regardless of cost, I love the silent charging of solar and glad it is becoming more affordable.

    [Reply]



Comments or Questions?