11 July 2014     1 comments

Hydrofoil Cruiser

Paul Bieker has announced this interesting new design on the Biekerboats blog. The foils resemble what is quickly becoming the standard on high performance race boats such as the A-class. We don’t think the B53 is intended to completely fly both hulls with this set up - the foils reduce displacement and provide dynamic stability.

Introducing the B53 high-performance cruising cat, just beginning construction at Gold Coast Yachts in the…

B53 cruising foiler

18 June 2012     0 comments

Not Your AWB

Thomas Heatherwick explains a boat design commission to transport tourists and locals along the Loire river between Nantes and Saint-Nazaire.

Unlike a traditional two-hulled catamaran, the boat will have a single hull that folds back on itself and stretches over to form an infinite loop. This makes space for two diagonal viewing decks from which passengers can look out towards works of art along the river banks.

Thanks to Paul D. for…

Heatherwick boat

18 February 2012     0 comments

Early Cat Racing in California

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…

Beowulf VI

02 December 2011     0 comments

The Life Pneumatic

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…


30 November 2011     0 comments

String Theory

Proving his iconoclast chops once again, Jan Gougeon launched his newest baby into the Saginaw River last summer - to cries of both shock and awe. I reported on the launch of Strings - or Project X - as she was formerly known, earlier, but we finally get a much better look at the fascinating vessel in the new Epoxyworks No. 33.

Strings is a 40’, folding, self-righting, water-ballasted, trailerable, sailing catamaran. She’s pod cat,…


12 November 2011     0 comments

James Wharram Designs Amatasi Launched

The team of James Wharram and Hanneke Boon launched their latest child, Amatasi, on Oct. 12, 2011. The award winning design, a 27’ double canoe is intended to be a practical and sustainable coastal fishing boat. As a proa designer, I certainly appreciate the elegance of the fine canoe sterns on this design, though I do find it somewhat ironic that it embraces the quarter rudder for steering, a design that harkens back to Viking long…

Amatasi 27

19 July 2011     0 comments

Son of Amaryllis

Jan Gougeon has finally revealed his radical new catamaran, seen here at the launch party in Bay City, MI. The wood, foam and carbon composite 40 footer includes water ballast, pivoting crossbeams for trailering, and rumor has it may even be self-righting! More details will be coming soon from the builder, I’ll update the post as it trickles in.

Via Sailing Anarchy


22 June 2011     0 comments

Evergreen - a Fast Expedition Catamaran

This year’s WoodenBoat Design Challenge III, “A Fast, Expedition Sailboat”, is a theme near and dear to my Proafile heart. Last winter, I was working up a design that fit the parameters pretty well, so when Canadian designer Laurie McGowan suggested we enter the contest, we chose EVERGREEN, a 6m (19’-8”) camp-cruiser cat. We had to really push to make the May 29 deadline but in the end we got the packet in the mail and had a great time…

Evergreen sketch

31 January 2011     0 comments

2011 Seattle Boat Show Report

The 2011 Seattle Boat Show has come and gone, without much of interest to report to Proafile readers, per usual. The sailing ghetto held its own and maybe even grew a bit over last year. Marine Servicecenter was displaying a Weta trimaran, my first look at the boat in the flesh. The Weta’s beams and mast are carbon fiber (mast is 6 lb.) making a pretty convincing argument for the judicious use of the black unobtanium. If the boat…

Seaglider 16

14 January 2011     0 comments

Green washing

There’s a great rant over on Sailing Anarchy about the continuing use of wind energy and sailing in various vaporware investment schemes that make little sense except as tools to separate fools from their money. B9 Shipping is SA’s well deserved target, which perhaps should have replaced the 9 with an S? To counter that, here’s a little green lesson from the past:

1978: Sunburst (formerly Bits ’n Pieces) was built in St. Maarten, from…