Modern yachts are amazingly complex, with numerous interrelated and conflicting requirements.
What makes this game so interesting is the enormous intellectual challenge that exists to get the details right. New and better ways of doing things are often hidden behind a mantra of habit, and in order to wring the most from the design, you need to be able to continuously probe the possible combinations and then be ready to switch course if a better idea presents itself.
Today was one of those days.
We typically fit FPBs with two sets of props, in case one gets dinged. These have to live somewhere, preferably low and easy to access; historically always in the forepeak. The FPB has a pair of 33”/825 mm five bladed props which will eventually require storing. The nibral bronze wheels weigh about 50kg/110 pounds. With all previous FPBs the spare props have lived in the forepeak. But these are of a size where it would be nice to have them closer to the propeller shafts.
After a number of discussions, it was found that an ideal place for storage existed on the swim step, just a few meters from where they would eventually end up if needed, in the swim step locker on the port side aft, where they can live happily together on a single spindle laying horizontally. When these move aft they leave a large bay available below the sole level in the forepeak. Which brings us to the lead photograph.
The forepeak is home to a pair of Head Hunter Mac 5 fresh water pressure pumps, a salt water wash down pump, a pair of air conditioning salt water pumps and a bilge pump. They need a place to live. At the same time the depth of canoe body below the sole offers a substantial amount of accessible storage volume which we want to protect.
Then there is the large foredeck hatch that will inevitably be left open when it should be dogged, leading to a wetting of the forepeak.
With the props aft it looked like there were some better options for placing these pumps, which is what is above. They are low in the boat so they have less lift requirement, are easily protected from water leaking in from the hatch above, and have little impact on storage.
Back in the engine room there has been a refinement in the engine raw water plumbing. We are back to the original design with the strainer and valves well above the load waterline. The old valve, which is in lower left in the photo, is mounted at a point which would have the valve below the waterline. The revised position of bits are now mocked up with the valve pointing skyward. This raises the raw water plumbing and the large Hayward strainer to where they are above the waterline, which allows the valve to be serviced with the boat floating.
It’s late, and tomorrow is another very full day. We will try and get off another post before flying back to the States.