Anna’s SUV Secret.

And just that quick, “Anna”is done. The moment of christening of this marvelous sloop from Lyman Morse Boatbuilding. Brava!

Anna has happened. After years in the making, our brand-new, all-custom 66-footer slid into the seas in Thomaston, Maine, finally ready to carry the hopes and dreams of yachting’s greatest miracle — the paying customer.

But christenings come with their gentle bummers. All the wonderful ideas and yard craftsmanship that get built over and hidden. No owner or sailor will ever see the engineering of the keel, the construction of the inner mast, or what makes the staterooms tight and dry.

So why not, with Anna so new to this world, talk through one of the more interesting inner secrets of this boat: Namely, how we arranged for access to the engineering systems of this lovely sloop.

That is, how did we handle the mundane, but so-critical stuff like fuel filters, water pumps, propulsion systems, electrical breakers, wiring harnesses, patch bays, network buses, central plumbing, water pumps, line filters and more and more.

The Mother of All Systems Lockers.

If you need to get to it on Anna, it’s all here under this gas-assisted hatch lift, that turns the average sitting area into a service portal.

What we wanted — and what any boat wants — is a central, easy-to-reach locale for these important tools, that is right there, mid-boat and near deck level. Of course, that real estate is dear on any vessel. So accessing a boat’s inner guts seems to attract the worst kind of White Trash naval engineering: Getting to a fuel filter usually means dealing with poorly configured hatches, dangerously open-to-under deck inner structures, pillows, places for the pillows, and yet more pillows.

All which somehow never yield enough space for the real humans to do the real work of changing that filter.

We figured, why not take a moment and create a properly spacious central systems area, that a person can actually use. So we looked around and flatly stole an idea from the SUV’s of the world: Create a seriously sturdy, perfectly balanced, gas-assisted lift door that accessed a big open space for all of Anna’s inner workings. (Explore the full PDF here).

You know the back-end of a Ford Explorer? Like that, but for all the boat bits.

Bosun’s Locker Meets Ford Explorer.

So easy, even a charter captain can do it: Right there, in the main salon, at deck level, are all Anna’s critical systems.

And wouldn’t you know it, haven’t we dreamed up the mother-of-all systems lockers. Right there at deck level, mid-boat — exactly where it needs to be — a big lovely double-hinging hatch under the raised-salon settees that leads to all the filters, pipes, plumbing and systems.

Now instead of rolling your guts out, waiting for the poor engineering monkey-girl to crawl down 12 feet to fix the clogged fuel filter, anybody, at any time can make the important fixes in any conditions. (Explore the full PDF here.)

And, the cushions stay where they belong, clean secure and free from spilled diesel fuel.

So there: One of Anna’s best kept secrets. How she takes the work out of keeping a boat working.