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M. W. Schacht



18-Nov 2017

Flotsam and Jetsam Articles

The Achilles Keel

Proaler Skate

Archival Video Footage of CHEERS

Proa Build in Thailand

Around the World in 584 Days

green : solar power img

Solar-powered catamaran goes around the world in 584 days

I know I’ll probably get a lot of flack for saying this, but I think solar cell powered ocean transportation is almost as likely as a perpetual motion machine. MS Turanor PlanetSolar, after all their high tech geekiness, managed a circumnavigation that does indeed demonstrate what solar power is capable of achieving: going around the world at about the same rate as Kon Tiki.

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Posted: 10/May/2012 | 4 Comments

Early Cat Racing in California

catamarans : history : steve dashew img

Before Steve and Linda Dashew became famous for their innovative blue water cruising yachts, both power and sail, they raced catamarans at the center of the growing multihull movement - Southern California in the early 60’s. Steve has put up a page at Set Sail with some great archival images of the catamaran racing scene back in the day. Rudy Choy, Warren Seaman, Bob Reese, Mickey Munoz, Phil Edwards, they knew and raced them all. Go check it out.

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Posted: 18/Feb/2012 | 0 Comments


The Golden Gate - Mini Camper

designers : jay nelson : smallcraft img

I found this electric-powered mini-camper by architect Jay Nelson at Tiny House Blog. I like the faceted, polyhedron style, all done up in plywood, plexiglass and epoxy. See more of his work at JayNelsonArt.com

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Posted: 15/Jan/2012 | 3 Comments

Santa’s New Sled

The Life Pneumatic

catamarans : kurt heiligenmann : smartkat img

I have a longstanding interest in pneumatic (pressurized) engineering structures. Blame it on Jacques Cousteau and his Zodiacs making a strong impression at an early age. For boats, inflatable hulls make all kinds of sense, being unusually light, strong, tough, and repairable. I even made a concept sketch of an inflatable hulled proa.

Here is Kurt Heiligenmann’s design for an inflatable beach cat - the Smartkat. Hate the name (I always hated the Smart Car because it implied that whoever purchased it was also “smart” and conversely, those of us who didn’t were less so), but this boat really IS brilliant. A 14’, 93 lb. rocket that fits into two canvas bags - store your beach cat in the closet, under the bed, or take it on your next flight to Ibiza.

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Posted: 02/Dec/2011 | 1 Comments

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