One of the more difficult design areas on the FPBs has been the forward “mast”. It does a number of jobs, some of which conflict with each other and/or different requirements. We’ve been fiddling with this on the FPB prototype Wind Horse since launching. What you see here is the result of that thinking and experience.
The forward mast serves as a base for the forward anchor light (we have another on the aft mast), the foredeck flood light (bottom angled down), the large spot light, forward range light, horn, and Windex. It is also the forward end of the single side band radio long wire antenna, and plays a part in the emergency sailing rig.
The most difficult chore is providing a location for the big spotlight which allows illumination of the water close to the bow without reflecting off the deck or anchor.
Then there is the view, or lack thereof from the helm. Wind Horse has great sight lines, but we have found the bulk of the six inch (150mm) single mast annoying (we are switching to this newer, more open design).
Another small, but important detail which has taken a lot of engineering time. This ladder sees occasional use. When not required it would be better to have it out of the way.
On the FPB 64 this folds back, onto the house.
The doors for the swim step lockers are now in place.
Countertops are being installed, the next to the last joinerwork detail.
Speaking of details, the light gray device is a flow sensor in the output line of the damage control pump. One of these is also on the inlet of the main engine raw water pump. These flow sensors are connected to the NMEA 2000 system and give an early warning of problems.
We’re in the engine room of the second boat now. This is a clear photo of the bracing system on the dry exhaust riser on the main engine. It is designed to be supported off the engine and isolated from structure to minimize noise transfer.
Plating is complete on hull number three. This is a good view of the slight tunnel in the aft sections of the hull. Circa’s crew have done an amazing job at bending 12mm (15/32″) plate to this shape.
This photo (also hull #3) gives us a chance to take in the aft end of the engine room before it fills with equipment.
The forward end, port side, of the engine room. Note the continuation of the middle topside stiffener into the work bench on the bulkhead.
Meanwhile on the inside of three the tanks are being tested. The red and clear hose device is called a manometer. This is a highly accurate indicator of pressure. Tiny leaks will result in a pressure drop which shows up on the manometer.
Hull number four is now fully framed and plating is starting.
Back to the engine room on number one. Note the yellow 20 liter (five gallon) pail of oil. There is a second behind this. More room for oil storage exists between the transverse frame shown and the genset (white box on the left).