I am posting a link to an article about one self-made very ugly, but very interesting 12 meter aluminium boat. The owner and manufacturer Ernesto Tross (a German living in Italy and crusing in the Indian Ocean) swears by its seaworthiness and practicality. Essential non-standard features: No mainsail and boom (only fore sails), very aft deckstepped mast that can be lowered and lifted when the boat is on water, three fore stays for three headsails, good ballast in the bilge but no keel (only a centreboard), completely watertight flat deck with a lot of space below. The man claims he can sail up to 50 degrees true wind angle and that in heavy weather the boat behaves well (as far as I understand his only tactic is lying ahull). Without the resistance of the keel (with board lifted) a breaking wave moves the boat sideways instead of capsizing it. There is an interesting article on the boat in the March edition of Giornale della Vela for those who read Italian. The link I am posting is an old one with google translated text.
Nella tana dell'Orso Bianco
Thanks for posting.
Is in fact a curious sailboat and built like a submarine, with the exception of the engine but I would not wanted it not even if it was offered free to me. I am sure it is very slow and it seems very amateurish to me. Maybe that's because I am an architect and I am used to see people thinking they can do a better job than an architect and build their houses with their own made plans thinking they know better. I am used to see the results, and the costs also
You know a good NA has not only a solid theoretical basis that allow him not to make huge errors as has the accumulated knowledge of many other designs he and other NA had done. By other words he is very knowledgeable. He knows what works and what does not work for each use. He can due a better or worse job but it always be a very informed job and in the end it cannot be a bad one.
Thinking that a guy after having made a circumnavigation has the knowledge to improve radically on actual designs and systems is foolish. Simply the accumulated knowledge is not enough. He can eventually improve under the basis of a well known design but making successively a radically new one? I don't think it is possible or credible.
He have a success case in that regards improving under the basis of well known designs, and even that is pretty unusual, even if on this case it really happened. I am referring to Hanna's boat, the Boreal 44, but in this case the builder just improved details over well known boat typologies that were already expressed in boats like the OVNI or Allures. If he tried a completely different approach, like in this case, I bet he would be condemned to failure or at least would have to make many boats to finally get to a good an acceptably good boat in what regards performance, commodity and price.
He has taken a huge effort to make that boat and obviously spend a lot of money in it. He is not young, in some years when he is going to sell it we will only get a fraction of what it cost it to him, not to mention the thousands of hours he took to build it. I believe that like me, nobody would want a boat like that.
Boats like the Allures or Boreal are so good because there is a huge line of previous designs made by the same principles, many designed by the same NA, and they learn with each boat and the next is a bit better and so improvements have been introduced by several decades and dozens of designs.