The magic word here seems to be “able”. “Able to cross oceans” does not equal “enjoyable while crossing oceans”. There is a huge difference between owning a boat that can cross an ocean and owning a boat that invites you to undertake an ocean crossing. That’s what becomes clearer and clearer, as we speak to more and more motor yacht owners and ask why they mostly do in-continent trips.
Hundreds of sailboats cross the Atlantic Ocean every year. Sail boats that are usually 10 to 15 meters long, so much smaller than their 15 to 25 meter motor yacht counterparts. And while hundreds of sail boats cross the Atlantic maybe one or two motor yachts perform that same feat. Maybe one or two motor yachts cross an ocean, even though, on a yearly basis, 75 to 100 of these yachts are actually build and sold!
How come so many sailors use their sail boats as they were intended? How come so few owners of motor yachts with ocean crossing ability use their explorers as they were intended? What’s wrong with current motor yacht design? The deeper we dived in, the more we realized that the answers we got, could be grouped in three categories:
- Crossing oceans on a “standard” motor yacht can be an uncomfortable affair;
- It is expensive to the point of prohibitive to undertake longer voyages;
- The many complex systems onboard create uncertainty and safety concerns (“what if something breaks?”).
So there you have it. The question of what’s wrong with current yacht design has an answer. What’s wrong with contemporary yachts is that they too often seem to offer limited sea comfort, are expensive to operate, and are often considered to be too complex to handle the biggest stretches of water that our planet has to offer. Instead of a focus on sea-state, they too often seem to aim at in-harbor qualities.
The reason why we decided to design and build our own boat? Because we want an explorer yacht that is comfortable to sail, inexpensive to run, and easy to operate. We are willing to trade space for increased efficiency. We choose simplicity and safety over luxury. We don’t want a house on the water, but a boat in the water. And, apart from the Dashew FPB’s, that are no longer in production, nothing that’s currently being build comes close to what we envision.
That’s answering the “why”, but how about the “how”? How do we expect to succeed at building a hyper-efficient, safe, comfortable, and easy to operate explorer yacht, where others seemingly struggle with priorities and compromises? Well, we are inventors by trade. Out-of-the-box-thinkers. Designers that have perfected “less is more” or “more with less” in multiple industries.
That, and we are encouraged that it has been done before. Not just in other industries by us, but also on the water, by countless others. Not just once, but hundreds of times. Here is where you go for inspiration: each and every sail boat that has been used for an ocean crossing can guide us on how to improve on current motor yacht design.
Current explorer design is big & bulky, and fears (rather than embraces) the water …