Nelson250Nov2Built initially by Martin Yachts in Vancouver for IMS (International Measurement System) and ultimately for one design racing, the Nelson/Marek 36 is a design with focus. Until a fleet is established, however, racing under the IMS rule will have to be endured, as the real goal is to race identical boat against identical boat to test the talents of skippers and crews.

The design brief to the California team of Nelson/Marek was not unusual-demanding "a top performer in today's typical windward-leeward courses." Another decision at the outset involved the sailplan. Interestingly, they chose mast and boom dimensions that exactly match those of the Bruce Farr designed Mumm 36 -- one of their chief competitors. This will allow owners of the N/M 36 to compete in "away" regattas (presumably in borrowed Mumm 36s) and to take their own set of sails with them. They are hoping that they can add a little incentive to early owners by joining in the Mumm 36 established success but at a considerably reduced cost. Ian Fraser, the dealer for the N/M 36 from Westerly Yacht Sales, considers this boat a much better value than the Mumm (but then what salesman worth his salt wouldn't make such a claim). I'll let you be the final judge.

These matched sailplans give us a chance to compare the design decisions of two top ranked designers -- Bruce Farr and Nelson/Marek. Each has chosen a 36 foot boat, but Nelson Marek has narrowed the beam to 10 ft. 4 in., 18 in. narrower than the Farr boat. Most of that beam has come out of the topsides (the beam difference isn't that great at the waterline), resulting in a boat that has much less flare. The America's Cup class has followed the same trend, although I must be cautious making this comparison for the rules under which the boats sail are entirely different, with this year's crop of A.C. hulls being significantly narrower and more slab sided. Reducing the overall beam will lower the resistance as the boat heels in the upper wind strengths -- it is simply a slimmer boat and easier to push through the water. In light air the flare or no flare decision has little effect. The significance to the sailor is that the Nelson Marek will tolerate sailing upwind heeled, while the Farr boat will want to be kept more on its feet.

In an upwind boat speed contest between these two designs, it's too difficult to predict the winner. The Nelson Marek is lighter, claiming they can build the boat 500 pounds lighter than the Mumm, and has the same keel weight poured into a larger shallower keel. The tall thin rudders are very similar. I suspect the leeways while sailing upwind will be comparable. Farr has gone with more draft (which should reduce leeway), but less area (which will increase leeway). Upwind speed will be greater on the Farr boat because of the reduced keel area, but less because of the greater boat weight. To really determine the winner, you need to push both boats through a performance prediction, or let them loose on the water - something that will happen soon I am sure.

Downwind the efficiency of the keel is not a factor, but wetted surface and sailing length are. Nelson/Marek are hoping that the lighter weight of the overall boat makes up for the extra wetted surface of the larger keel.

The hull, deck and interior are constructed of E glass (what most sailors think of as normal fiberglass) and S-glass (high strength glass) bonded with epoxy resin and vacuum bagged to eliminate entrapped air and unwanted excess resin. Foam and balsa core are used selectively with the balsa incorporated in areas with high compression loads. Indicative of the high end racing market, the rudder is carbon fibre construction.

The back page of the promotional brochure for the N/M 36 is entitled "cruising comfort". I think you don't really want to cruise on this boat and it's certainly not my definition of comfort. With a galley split on port and starboard, no oven, no table, no chart table, no separate cabin aft and no bureau storage, it's not the boat for a two week holiday. It is however, the boat for evening races, weekend regattas and Key West race week. Just like other light displacement racers, it is a purpose built racer that will cut to windward like a knife and take off down wind.

Specifications

LOA            35 ft. 7 in.

Beam            10 ft. 4 in.

Draft             7 ft.

Ballast             3,500 lbs.

Weight             7,600 lbs.

Sail Area            643.5 sq. ft.

To see if this boat is available, go to http://www.boatcan.com for listings!

 

Destinations

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Suddenly the once forsaken city of Hamilton, Ontario is booming for at least two good reasons.

Grenada: It was all so inviting...

The Large Island of Grenada

By Katherine Stone

Anytime a Canadian is asked to travel south in the beginning of our spring, which this year was far from inviting, is a dream worth living. The thought of a sailing adventure, tropical breezes, the smell of spices and the warmth of the sun was too much – we HAD to go! The first thing we did was to dig out the copy of Ann Vanderhoof’s book, The Spice Necklace, we had acquired several years ago and to re-read the seven chapters of their adventures in Grenada. Not only should this be your required reading, but the book is loaded with scrumptious Caribbean recipes that are a must-try.

Read more about Grenada...

 

 

Lifestyle

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Leader 9.0

Leader 9.0By Andy Adams

In the case of baking a cake, Betty Crocker and Julia Child both start off with the same eggs, sugar and flour, but the results can be very different. Naval architects, designers and engineers in the boat business also have many of the same ingredients, but the trick is to make the cake unique and desirable.

With a huge history of innovative design in boatbuilding, Jeanneau brings the sort of skill and artistry to their boats that can set them apart. Their new Leader 9.0 model is a case in point.

Read more about the Leader 9.0...

 

 

 

DIY & How to

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In this time of boat show afterglow, many boaters are counting the days until launch. 

Ask Andrew – How to hire a boat repair contractor

hiring a contractorBy Andrew McDonald

A recent conversation with a fellow contractor got me thinking: With all of the information out there, including: Websites showing repairs, YouTube tutorials, Instagram pages and snapchat streams – let alone books, magazines, service manuals, and years of practical experience – how does a boat owner know which method(s) are ‘right’, who to trust, and who to hire to do the job? In short: How do you find and select a contractor?

Unfortunately, most people are forced to hire a contractor due to a circumstance where something has broken or failed, or the task...

Read more about hiring a contractor...

 

  

Marine Products

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