Cal 4040 or Solo: You Decide.

Thinking aloud about a Cal 40 reboot turned out to be more “interesting” than we ever imagined. In our last articles, we chatted idly over what we’d thought would be about keeping C. William Lapworth’s legendary pac-racing Cal 40 relevant to today’s materials and techniques. And, oh boy, what a hit. We’re no stranger to strong opinions and hot-bar arguments with this wacky and wonderful sailing tribe of ours. But we were caught out when this Cal 4040 piece instantly became our most popular story, ever. (It never hurts when our friends over at the all-mighty Sailing Anarchy copied and linked […]

On A Great Mac-Race SoT Racer.

It might be mid-April, but that hasn’t stopped thousands of fresh water sailors from booking up their July-21st weekend. That’s when the Chicago-Mac race — or more precisely, the “Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac”  — fires off for 2018. And true to form, this year’s 333-mile granddaddy of all freshwater distance races will see a full flush of raceboats shaping up at the starting line. So far, we counted 292 vessels in the 2018 scratch sheet. Wednesday night ’round-the-can racing, the Mac is not. Of course, to our twisted-boat design sense of fun, a more rigorous all-around boat test […]

Anna’s SUV Secret.

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 […]

A Winter’s Doodles: Design Notes from Early 2018.

If you leave scrap paper and pencils around this place long enough, sooner or later they get filled up with weird and wonderful boat design notes. And after a long winter of listening to our clients’ hopes and dreams, some dang interesting sketches have piled up around the office. Since it is cold and gray now, why not brighten things up by showing off what the Spirit-of-Tradition world is most interested in, here in early 2018. The big questions so far are, what does a family need to go sailing and camping in and what does a true, hard core […]

Hood 24 Named Top 5 Must-See Boats at 2018 New England Boat Show

Top 5 Must-See New Boats plus “Queen of the Show” at the 2018  Progressive Insurance New England Boat Show February 10-18 at the Boston Convention Center Feb. 8, 2018, Boston: Looking for something to float your boat this winter? Search no further than the iconic New England Boat Show! With 600 boats and 250 exhibitors, the show offers a bedazzling array of marine magnificence. To help navigate, here are the top 5 must-see new models: Boston Whaler 350 Realm The 350 Realm is perfect for entertaining family and friends. As the first in a new family of Boston Whaler express […]

In the Spirit of Fazisi: A Designer’s Notebook.

What is it with Russians and nostalgia? In movies there’s Nostalghia, Andrei Tarkovksy’s brooding 1988’s film masterpiece about the lurid horrors of a collapsing Soviet Union. (Yeah, this is a boat-design newsletter, get over it.) And in raceboats, there is Fazisi. The brooding 82-foot, late 1980’s Whitbread round-the-world speedster, that ran the 32,932 mile event with no sea trials, little funding and lots of stress. The skipper on the first leg, the poor Aleksei Grishenko, hanged himself from a tree in Uruguay. Leaving American, Skip Novak, to take over the fight making his way around the globe and write a […]

Dasher: The Un-revolution in Electric Boats.

When it comes to boats, the revolutions seem to happen when they’re not that revolutionary. Take all-electric runabouts. Our shop has spent nearly 10 years exploring electric propulsion in smaller craft. And earlier this year, the once impossible quietly happened: A major, high-quality American production boat builder began shipping an all-electric powerboat. Branded as the “world’s first all electric luxury yacht,” the svelte 28-foot Hinckley Dasher features twin 80hp inboard Torqeedo all-electric motors, BMW’s i3 waterproof lithium-ion batteries, and high capacity, dual 50-amp charging cables that can repower this boat in less than 4 hours. We’re sure that electrical pioneers, […]

On Powering Anna

Sailboats are just that: Boats that move because they have sails. So while we spend lots of our time figuring how out how slick mechanical systems operate winches and cool the air below, at the end of the day a boat like our new 66-footer Anna, just finishing up at Lyman Morse Boatbuilding, is a sailboat: Her central role is to provide her owners and crew the delightful experience of cajoling the wind into pushing or pulling all through the water — in more or less the direction the crew wants to go. Since Anna’s chief propulsive force is the […]