FPB 78-1: First Sea Trial


It is a little over a week since Cochise splashed and we are on our first sea trial. As the engines are new and in their break-in period, we are running a little harder than normal.

The photo above is at 12.5 knots. We have been checking motion and stabilizer programming. The ride is very soft, and it should not take a lot of effort on the stabs.


All systems are operating now. Those of you who know yacht building will realize what an achievement this is for the Circa team. From the diesel boiler and the heating system, to air conditioning, charging gear, and electronics, it is all working.


There will be bugs of course, that is what sea trials are about, but early indications are this will be a relatively painless process.


In the “I would not do that again” category is the TV lift system. It is totally unnecessary. The TV in its lowered position works great.


The helm layout works well. And we are liking the Simrad gear so far.


A night entry into Whangamumu and Cochise gets to show off her booms and flopper stoppers. She reacts ever so softly to the swell, and we have a very pleasant evening.

Posted by Steve Dashew  (June 20, 2016)

16 Responses to “FPB 78-1: First Sea Trial”

  1. Peter Says:

    Can’t wait for 78-2

  2. Scott Paulson Says:

    Referencing first pic. Literally no wake at 12.5k. Your hull forms are perfection. And the systems…well, how do you top good planning and engineering. A+++ Steve and Linda. Congratulations on a magnificent achievement.

  3. Greg Says:

    The TV lift might seem like a waste when using the TV for navigation displays, but it will be really nice to watch a dvd with the screen lifted. Looking at the floor when watching something for long periods of time isn’t desirable.

  4. Carl E. Says:

    Hi Steve: Two quick questions: 1. The aft solar panels were originally planned on a full width overhang. Has this overhang been eliminated or is it to be used differently? 2. I understand you have a huge number of Maretron sensors, but “just” four or five (?) Maretron DSM150 displays. Does the Simrad evo2 allow full access to the Maretron sensor data or will you be using a laptop or tablet for more of an overview?

  5. Steve Dashew Says:

    Hi Carl:
    That aft overhang is now a lounging and maintenance access area.
    There are fifteen Maretron DSM 150 displays.

  6. Shannon Woodcock Says:

    Can’t wait to see the numbers from the solar panels, especially with the extra panels on that aft roof extension. If all goes well the gen set will have have more hours maintenance running vs running to generate needed electricity.

    Yellow reflective tape on the booms really show in the dark.

    3rd picture down, the one from the bow facing aft. What is that between the transom and the salon windows next to the danforth anchor? A Dorade vent?

  7. Steve Dashew Says:

    Hi Shannon:

    I think you are referring to the engine room air intake.

  8. James Masters Says:

    what a beauty — nice job, everyone.
    1- thanks, Steve, for the pic from the matrix-deck aft-window of the solar-panels on the ‘porch-roof’.
    2- how much space between the matrix-deck aft-window and the solar panels …?
    3- what are those three white vertical-objects on the fwd-area of the great-rm-‘roof’ …?
    4- for those who’ll wonder, that’s so smart of you to put that-‘fpb 781’ on her bow.
    5- being on-board and the way it’s all working so well and the way she’s riding, is even better than you dreamed it would be, …yes?

    thanks so very, very much for including us ….

  9. Steve Dashew Says:

    Hi James:
    There is roughly 1.5 meters between the aft Matrix window and the solar panels.The ride is as expected uphill so far and somewhat better with beam seas. That said,we have not yet had much variety in sea state and the NAIAD stabilizers are far from being dialed in.

  10. THOMAS HONAN Says:

    So well orchestrated, Circa are a wonder,as you and your team Steve.

  11. Tom Smeaton Says:

    Looking great. Congratulations.
    Best regards,
    Tom Smeaton

  12. Ward Says:

    The picture from the foredeck really shows how great the visibility is in the Great Room.

  13. PJ Says:

    Looking very good indeed, and a soft ride is great to hear. The wake looks nice and flat for a 12 knot push, even with less than full payload.

    In the first pic, what is intended purpose for the horizontal attachment blocks just fore of similar blocks presently connected to the boom guy wires?

  14. Steve Dashew Says:

    Hello PJ:
    The booms are controlled by vang like struts rather than guys.

  15. Thayer Says:

    Argh! Nine days without an update on arguably the most exciting event in the last 3 years of FPB. Withdrawal pains are agony…. Throw us a life-line… 🙂

  16. Steve Dashew Says:

    To Thayer and all the other patient (and impatient) Setsailors:
    Apologies for paucity of news. We have been buried with trials of FPB 78-1 Cochise, working with Circa on design details for other projects, and getting Cochise ready to go cruising. We are taking the weekend off, and then begin testing Cochise in a cruising context. That includes lots of photos and details.