RM 1260

2013 May 2


Here is an unusual design from French designer Marc Lombard. What makes this design so unusual is that it is a production model with a hull built of marine plywood and epoxy. Production boats built of plywood are not new. There was the old Newporter series built in California in the early 1960s. But this is a very modern design and it should appeal to sailors looking for comfort and good performance.

To build in plywood you must remove any compound curvature from the hull. The hull panels will have to be "conically developed," so they can be bent with flat sheets of plywood. To do this without too much compromise on hull shape, the designer has chosen multiple chines. In this case three chines each side. Chines are just corners and today we often see a single chine aft on many high-performance boats.

A chine can be used to help flatten out the buttocks and increase sailing length. I think chines can look good too. They emphasize the hull lines. This hull has only 12 inches of total overhang. It's a very beamy hull with an L/B of 2.75. The D/L is 124. You have the choice of having twin keels with a draft of 6 feet 5 inches, and a single rudder so your boat can sit on the mud with dignity. Or you can have a single keel with a draft of 7 feet 5 inches and twin rudders for improved performance. When you have a boat with excessive beam aft, twin rudders are a very good idea.

The boat is nicely laid out with a double quarterberth to port and a large galley forward of that. There is a head to starboard. There is a quarterberth cabin to starboard and you access this cabin through the head. That's a bit odd, but I suspect most owners will use that cabin space as stowage.

There is a large nav station to starboard and settees forward of that. It looks to me like there is a pilot berth to port. The owner's stateroom is forward and it has a centerline double berth. I like this layout with its big galley. Pilot berths make perfect places to stow your guitar.

When I look at this rig what strikes me is the extra long upper panel on the mast. To my eye the spreaders look too low on the mast, making that upper panel considerably longer than the lower panel. This is unusual. But with the chainplates outboard and long spreaders, the cap shrouds make an 11-degree angle with the mast and that is plenty to keep the mast straight. There are running backstays to support the staysail loads. The SA/D is 23.06. Note also just how far aft the deck-stepped mast is on this design.

This boat has twin wheels and an open transom. I like the looks of this boat. The sheer is not quite dead flat but this type of boat looks good with very little sheer spring. I think your eye will be drawn to the chine line above the DWL so sheer spring is not so important.

Again, this is an unusual boat in several ways. The construction technique with the plywood hull and the GRP deck is unusual. The rig is a bit unusual with those low spreaders and of course a multiple-chine hull will set it apart from other production models. It's nice to have something unusual to review.