The GT35 now comes in two specification variants

DEVELOPMENT OF THE GT35

Yes, news is the addition of a new specification level for the GT35! Having launched what is without doubt the gold-standard in GT35-01, this level of specification, now referred to as the Grand Tour version, is not needed by all. Listening to feedback from boat shows and general enquiries it is clear that while people want the performance, the quality and the safety, there is opportunity to simplify the interior and exterior design in order to produce a new version, the GT35 Club.

I know that the Grand Tour version is appreciated by many, but it's likely that many more will be quite happy with the Club version. What are the main differences? Well, all we've done is to remove some of the complex joinery and headlining design in order to achieve a quicker build. There are no corner-cutting tricks resulting in erosion of quality, just a reduction in complexity in a discrete number of areas. For example, in the forecabin where the Grand Tour version benefits from an offset berth and vanity area, the Club version simply has a full width berth:

Forward Cabin - Grand Tour variant
Forward Cabin - Club variant
Above. Shown on the left is the Grand Tour version of the forward cabin. The drawing shows the offset berth arrangement, together with vanity table and locker on the starboard side of the berth. Shown on the right is the Club version of the forward cabin. The berth simply extends the full width of the cabin. Click the image to download the General Arrangement drawing as a PDF.

There are a number of differences between the two variants, all along similar lines where we have simplified the design, including a sugar scoop transom in way of the folding bathing platform. Not sacrificed are any of the engineering or sailing qualities. Of course, any or all of the features that go to make up the Grand Tour version can be included in the Club version as options.

Sparked your interest? Find out more - contact me.

Also, have a read of my update on keels below; there's been a couple of interesting revelations since my last newsletter.

Yours,

Conrad.

KEELS UPDATE

Yes, since my last comment on keels and their integration into the structure of the yacht, two major pieces of news have emerged:

  • The MAIB report into the sinking of Cheeki Rafiki with all hands lost, and
  • The sinking of Polina Star III, thankfully with no casualties.
Now, the yachts involved in both these incidents are very different. One a 40 foot production charter work-horse with many miles under her, the other a brand new 90 foot semi bespoke private cruising yacht. So what's the connection? Well, both these yachts were constructed using a separate structural moulding, inserted and bonded into the hull - a structural matrix which is produced and cured separately to the hull itself.

This method of creating primary structure is not employed to raise the bar of best practice, it's only employed to cut production time. This is not necessarily a bad thing of course, but in this case, the method can only theoretically be proven to provide the necessary strength. In practice, it is almost impossible to survey the bond either in the factory or during service. As always, the devil is in the detail, and this can negate the targeted efficiencies.

Whilst the MAIB report into the sinking of Cheeki Rafiki cited this method of production as a possible cause given the difficulty of ensuring the bond is sound, it is not yet known publically whether the cause of the sinking of Polina Star III was rooted in this manufacturing method of using a structural matrix.

The point is, as an owner, if your yacht has been built in this manner you will never know how the bond between your primary structure and your hull is performing. At GT Yachts, we don't build yachts like that. At GT Yachts the primary structure is laid wet into the hull while the hull is still curing, ensuring that, as any composite structure should, there is a continuous load path through the structure. This I maintain is current best practice.
Start of the lay up of the GT35 keel floors
Primary structure integration process
Above. GT35-01 hull shown during the process of adding primary structure. Clearly seen here in mid process is the addition of keel floors as well as forward, side and engine girders.
GT35 Offshore Cruiser
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