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  #1  
Old 04-16-2002
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Design Standards

Quick thanks to all the great posts on this board. This is my first post on this board so please excuse me if I mis-step.

I am in the process of developing Requirements and Design specifications for a 45'' Cutter Rigged Offshore Cruiser. I would like to be able to reference existing standards wherever possible (example: ''Construction of the Bow area shall be NLT 2.0 ABS Yacht Construction standards).

My question is three-fold:

1. Where could I find an up-to-date electronic copies of the ABS and other standards (weblink, etc.)?

2. What other standards might I be interested to use as references?

3. Are there some good examples of technical Requirements and Design specifications that could be used as a template or guideline?

My overall goal is to:

1. Clearly articulate/document my requirements- Clarify my thoughts and allow others to challenge my thinking on things.

2. Provide specific guidance to Brokers and possibly designers/builders if an acceptable existing design is not available.

3. Provide a quantifiable baseline to compare various designs and options.

Thanks for your input!

Kind Regards,

JD
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

What you are proposing is a pretty complicated process and frankly I am not sure that it will gain you very much. World wide there are a wide range of regulations that a boat can be constructed to.

The problem is that even if you could personnally write your own specification, there is no way that you can give that specification to a Broker and expect that broker to be able to evaluate whether a particular boat even meets those standards. In my experience, few broker, or even surveyors have the depth of knowledge necessary to evaluate many of the more esoteric aspects of a yacht designed to meet a highly customize set standards. There is no want that they can know, without distructive testing, the laminate schedule and achieved strength for example.

Many yacht designers would not be able to tell you if a given design of theirs met a customized set of regulations. They might have designed a structure with great care but things happen in the construction process that can greatly alter the real strength of a boat.

If you really want to end up with a particular safety performance I would think that you would want to work with one of the more sophisticated design firms, one that has good computer modeling capabilities. (What I mean by ''good computer modeling capabilities'' is the ability to acurately model loads and check structural elements in detail and not just the simplified off the shelf design packages that are getting common in the industry)Beyond that you would ideally retain that firm for in the field observation of the construction process.

Then there is the issue of the actuallu quality of the standards that are out there. If followed most are considered to do a reasonable job of protecting the consumer of an average production yacht. The problem is that they are designed to work in a very generalized application and are often simplified to the point that they are really very empirical and do not actually tell you what will happen in any specific or unsual case. They are often dumbed down to make them easier to achieve or enforce.

In listening to lectures on the process of developing these standards the processes are really interesting. For example, when they were trying to understand the forces that are exerted on bow sections, one of the research groups looked at two vessels that had had their bow buckled in heavy storms. One was an aluuminum yacht and the other a steel work boat. They built replicas of both bows and then very carefully measured the forces that were required to produce the levels of deformation observed in the actual boat. These were evaluated and a safety factor added and resulted in the generally recommended design loads for the bows of boats (roughly 80 psi, normal to the surface if I remember correctly). The development of the EU Stability standards was a really interesting process as well if you can find a paper on that process.

Here is a partial list of the better agencies writing yacht standards:

The Germanische Lloyds is considered to be one of the most stringent and detailed building guidelines. (http://www.germanlloyd.org/cgi-bin/w/w3red?SET=CUSTOMER&SUB=3}

The EU directive on small craft design is a very comprehensive set of design parameters. While extermely useful as a design tool, they have been softened a bit in the political process that lead to their adoption across the EU. In its original form it included very comprehensive stability data but that has been greatly reduced as well (http://europa.eu.int/comm/enterprise/maritime/maritime_regulatory/rsg_guidelines.pdf)

The Canadians have a good all purpose standard that will simple to read and understand does a good job with the basics. (http://www.ccg-gcc.gc.ca/obs-bsn/regs-stds/tp1332/main.htm)

For plumbing and electrical systems there is the ABYC and UL standards. In their own words, the American Boat & Yacht Council, Inc. (ABYC) develops the voluntary consensus safety standards for the design,construction, equipage, maintenance, and repair of small craft. The development of uniform standards is the basis for industry-wide design. (www.abyc.com)

UL is testing and standard setting organization that covers all kinds of things that are safety related.They are an excellent resource for electrical and fuel issues. http://ulstandardsinfonet.ul.com/

ABS has a whole set of standards for yacht construction but I beleive that they considered a little dated and are undergoing a rewrite. Maybe they are done by now as I have not followed that process in a couple years.

Good luck,
Jeff
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

I was waiting for Jeff to respond to this, and heartily agree with his first paragraph. I think you''re asking for trouble with your current approach. It reminds me of the old saying that a camel is a horse designed by a committee. In short, let the professionals do their job. Unless you have a degree in naval architecture or marine engineering, don''t burden them with a big pile of probably conflicting design "requirements" from all over the globe. you could end up with a boat that meets everything to the letter, but won''t sail well enough to beat a jellyfish.

First assumption: money is no object for your project.

Second assumption: By specifying a 45 foot ocean-going cutter you already know the features and accommodations you want.

Third assumption: you want this to be the best built boat possible.

Given all that, here''s an alternate approach. Is there a boat manufacturer or designer out there right now that you like? For example, do you like Bill Crealock''s work for Pacific Seacraft? If so, Crealock has a very active custom design business and I''m sure he could design something to please you.

Or do you like Tom Morris''s boats? If so, a trip to Southwest Harbor, Maine might be in order. Also, Chuck Paine (primary designer for Morris Yachts) does all kinds of custom work, too.

Do you like Bob Perry''s work out in Seattle? Or German Frers? Or Bruce Farr? Dave Pedrick? All will do custom work for you, and all will design a boat any of us on here would feel quite comfortable going around the world in.

Personally, if I had been the lucky one to have won that $325 million Big Game prize last night, I would hike my parts up to Maine and see Tom Morris. Personal preference only of course.
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

SailorMitch:
Don''t be so quick to head to Maine, I think you should consider a trip to Argentina to see Senior Frers.
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

JD - sounds like you are a graduate of the Defense Acquisition University (DAU)... not sure that would be a good method for building a yacht though :O)

And ...let''s not forget Ted Hood in RI.

Everyone has given some very good advice, but I do have one possibly helpful sugestion: there have recently (past 1-2 yrs) been a number of articles in Sail and Cruising World on the design and construction of some yachts in the class you are talking about. Of course Hawk comes to mind - the Van de Stadt 47 ft being sailed by Evans Starzinger and Beth Leonard. At any rate, there are a number of articles online and in print on the subject. You might wish to some more background work to see 1) how others approached this problem and 2) their solutions and boats.

Hope this helps.

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Design Standards

Denr,

Hate to break it to you, but I REALLY like Tom Morris''s boats. I have some friends who used to own a 1984 Morris 36 -- their boat was the Morris Yacht in the 1984 Annapolis show. My drool marks probably are still on that boat. (They sold it and got out of sailing.) Mr. Morris knows how to build a great boat, and I love the lines that Chuck Paine draws. Morris also has gotten into the fancy new materials and construction methods, too. His boats are awesome IMHO.

Almost as nice as a Sabre that is.
(I won''t even go into Pearson''s.)

FYI -- I''ve been known to say that should I come into a bunch of money, a Sabre 362 would suddenly appear in my slip. But with $325M (had I been so lucky), I''m sure that Morris and Paine could come up with something suitable just for me.
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

Hi John,

I think your suggestion about looking at how others have done custome yachts is a great idea. Also there are designers whose whole practice is built around custom designs, like Rob Ladd (designed Patience Wales'' ''Boston Light'')in Annapolis who might also be a good designer to work with on something like this.

I don''t think that Ted Hood is still designing these days. Near the end of his active design carreer he worked closely with Dieter Empacher <www.dieterempacher.com>I beleive (in fact Dieter may have done much of the work on your boat.)

Regards
Jeff
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

I should''ve included Ted Brewer in the list to consider while throwing names out. He''s over in British Columbia if I''m not mistaken, and still very active.

Point is, there are lots of really superb designers out there who do this sort of thing all the time. All you have to do is have the money to pay them, and you''ll get a fantastic boat.
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

The original post was about a off-shore vessel, that said cancel your trip to Maine and grab your passport. Were going to Argentina....can you say Hallberg Rassy?

Did you get your boat in the water yet?
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Old 04-17-2002
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Design Standards

OK, OK, OK...we''ll go to Argentina! I like H-R''s too. Easy, aren''t I?

Boat splash date is April 24, so should be on the water for the Volvo Ocean 60''s and their parade of sail from Baltimore to Annapolis on Friday April 26. Come on down, Denr. It''ll be a blast. We can continue the debate on how to spend this guy''s money, plus pick out that 45 footer for under a million that must be burning a hole in your pocket.
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