A 60 Foot Elegant Motor Yacht for Living Aboard and Coastal Cruising

LOD 59’ Beam 16’ Draft 3’3" Displacement 23,850 lbs. LWL 44’ Disp. To Length Ratio 125

Once in awhile a designer receives a commission so simple and sensible as to be a delight to draw up. We were asked for a classic vessel for really elegant sheltered water living for two with the option of up to two guests.

We thought of the steam yachts of the early 1900’s and decided to take a look back at this era. Firedrake’s essentially single level interior is as roomy as a present day houseboat but in all other respects is unlike any houseboat. There is a view of the interior on the next page

Unlike many of today’s boats which seem to be designed to show off how much fuel their owners can afford to burn, while going very slowly to avoid being prosecuted for huge wakes, this vessel is light, long, and comparatively narrow. A low horsepower diesel will propel this hull as fast as it can go, without using significant amounts of fuel. She should have twice the wakeless speed of most powerboats at a fraction of the fuel consumption.

The bowsprit is essentially for anchor handling. With good easily handled ground tackle you will have much more fun anchoring out at no expense than you’d ever have in a crowded marina.

We would carry two identical sailing dinghies on the cabin top in davits for match racing by guests. A small brass swivel gun on the stern deck firing black powder or blank shot gun shells would start and finish the races and signal the taking in of flags at sunset.

In the wheelhouse behind the helmsman is a cushioned area, which can be a berth for a person on anchor watch on a stormy night. Any child would be thrilled to be allowed to sleep in the wheelhouse.

Firedrake’s lines show a modern interpretation of the principles of low speed powercraft design. While the design is styled after the old turn of the century steam yachts, the lines are not really very similar. The modern diesel engine is a lot lighter than a steam powerplant. As a result Firedrake’s lines are light displacement. Being a purely displacement hull top speed is limited to about 9 knots. Firedrake can run all day at 7 knots, through no-wake zones, busy waterways and anchorages without causing damage, erosion, or annoyance.

If this design were scaled up to between 100 and 150 feet it would be possible to get the cabin trunks low enough so that the vestigial sailing rigs of the original steam yachts could be put back on. Combined with the light displacement hull form the apparently small rig would actually be enough to do a good job of propelling the vessel and the result might be a very desirable motorsailor.

Firedrake is best built using Sheathed Strip construction. Total hull thickness is slightly over 1". Most structural members are filleted and taped to the hull for a very clean look down inside the hull.

Study Plans $66
Complete Building Plans $609

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