ideal18250Nov2Canada's Conneticuit-based yacht designer Bruce Kirby has long been known for the singlehanded Laser. Of course, he has designed numerous boats in the two decades that have passed since the famous dinghy made its debut, and one of the most recent is the Ideal 18. Although this new design is a keelboat, with a crew of two, the basic philosophy behind it is true to the little boat that made Kirby a household name -- in nautical households.

Designers don't create boats in vacuum; more often than not a commission from a custom client or a production builder provokes the new craft and dictates its parameters. The trick is to pick the right designer for the job, and it is this case Kirby's track record of creating one-designs like the Laser (for builder Ian Bruce) or the Sonar (initially for a group of Long Island Club racers) made him a logical choice.

In the case of the Ideal 18, the provocation came from Frank and Skip Shumway of Rochester N.Y. They had long andmired the Bullseye, a stable, full-keel little design by Nat Herreshoff first produced in 1934. They found it easy to sail because ther was no hiking required, and its stability inspired confidence. But to make it exciting, it needed a little more speed.

That's where Kirby entered the picture. All those involved felt the market was ready for a new fixed-keel sailboat with exceptional performance under strict one-design rules. After the preliminary design was complete, Ontario Yachts was brought in, not only to produce the boat, but to lend its years of small-boat experience building the Etchells-22, Kirby's Sonar, the Albacore and the International 14.

There is a strong emphasis on simplicity in this boat. It can be sailed by one or two people because of its self-furling and self-tacking jib. (It's so simple the second person might even get bored!) A Laser-style mainsheet with the bridle at the transom keeps the rigging cost low and maintenance to a minimum.

Kirby has drawn a hull whose whose shape differs in philosophy from his Sonar and Laser. The form is much more that of a displacement hull, with less emphasis on planning. As Dirk Kneulman Jr. of Ontario Yachts explains, the curvature in the underwater profile just forward of the rudder is there "to eliminate those large differences in speed you see in other classes between crews of different weights." I can attest to that fact, having watched Laser sailors lighter (and younger) than me scoot past on the reaching legs as I struggle to get up on a plane. To promote its use for the "aging Laser sailor," this boat has been desentitized to allow sailors of different weights and athletic ability to sail at very similar boat speeds -- and that should make for great racing.

No tweaking allowed!

Kneulman is keen to eliminate much of the tweaking that is done to so-called one-designs to elicit some subtle speed advantage. To produce smooth, consistent keels, the lead casting is lowered into a second mold and encapsulated in pigmented resin. Thus, no fairing is required or allowed. To locate the keel on the hull, a small stub is molded on centerline that fits into a recess in the keel. The keel cannot and must not be moved fore or aft.

With such tight controls, competitive racing plainly is contemplated, but much of the market is hoped to be at the cottage. Although the boat can be launched from a trailer, I suspect most owners will leave it on a mooring and enjoy the fact that four minutes after you jump on board you can be sailing.

Specifications

LOA            17 ft. 10 in.

Beam            6 ft. 2 in.

Draft            3 ft. 3 in.

Weight            1,200 lbs.

Sail Area             167 sq. ft.

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

 

 

CY Virtual Video Boat Tours

Virtual Boat ToursWe all love boats and nothing can break us up! So, what better way to spend our time than looking at interesting boats and going aboard in a virtual ride or tour. We have asked our friends at various dealers and manufacturers to help us assemble a one-stop online resource to experience some of the most interesting boats on the market today. Where the CY Team has done a review, we connect you to that expert viewpoint. If you can’t go boating, you can almost experience the thrill via your screen. Not quite the same, but we hope you enjoy our fine tour collection.

 

Read more about the CY Virtual Boat Tours....................

AXOPAR 37 XC

 

Axopar 37 XCWhole new ball game…

 

Set aside your assumptions and expectations for a few minutes while we try to describe the new Axopar 37 XC that made its American debut at the 2020 Miami International Boat Show. This boat represents a whole new ball game in terms of design, performance, seakeeping and functionality. In fact, I’d say it takes a ‘clean sheet of paper’ approach to boating – it’s that different.

Read More about the Axopar 37 XC..................

Destinations

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NW Explorations, a Bellingham, Washington-based yacht charter, brokerage, and marine services ...

Exiting Hogs BackBy John Morris

History: right after gym and just before chemistry class. Fifty minutes of naming the prime ministers by date and looking out the window. Who knew it was actually interesting.

And in some ways it hardly matters because the Rideau Waterway is just so amazingly beautiful. Driving your boat through the locks is wonderful fun for kids of all ages (adult kids, too) and the scenery is sensational. The history is a huge bonus however, and worth understanding from both as a political lesson and from an engineering perspective.

Read more about The Rideau...........


Lifestyle

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Recently while admiring the boats in Victoria Harbour my eyes locked into a 58ft yacht named ...
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DIY & How to

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I was cleaning up my workbench the other day. My eyes then scanned across my workbench and fell on ...
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Wooden boat production in the 1940’s and 50’s was epitomized by expert craftsmanship, beautifully ...
Wrapping your hull with marine vinyl wrap instead using traditional marine paint seems like a new ...
Boating safety is always—always—a critical consideration whenever you push off the dock, but with ...

The BucketI was cleaning up my workbench the other day. My eyes then scanned across my workbench and fell on ‘the bucket’. Everyone has a one. On a boat, it’s usually in a cockpit lazarette. It’s full of old paint cans and half-used tubes of caulking. There might be some white grease, painters tape or epoxy in there, too. I take my bucket everywhere and it’s full of all sorts of tubes of grease and sealants and adhesives.

I thought to myself that I should probably sort through the bucket and get rid of the stuff that isn’t useful. I quickly realized, though, that each of the items in my bucket (except that had gone bad) were useful, and each is used for a particular job.

Read more about The Bucket..........

 

  

Marine Products

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Dive tanks are notoriously difficult to stow on a boat and can be outright dangerous if left ...
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