By Travis Fickett
My father has an almost uncanny ability to visualize objects in three dimensions, and he uses this to his advantage to come up with new designs and create intricate molded parts. He just seems to know how things will fit together, before they are even built. I'd like to think I share some of those talents, but I also take advantages of the tools of the 21st century such as Computer Aided Design, or CAD.
When I was given the first sketches of the tranportable trawler, I redrew the profile and plan views in Rhinoceros 3D, one of the most widely used surface modeling applications. Using Rhino, I can load and tweak specific parameters such as length, beam, and height to start the process of translating the design to the third dimension.
Rhino allows you to create a realistic rendering that can be rotated in any direction. This really helps visualize the final product, but that's just the beginning. I can use the program to see how things might fit together—or might not. For example, after creating a bow profile, I can move inside to determine if the foredeck height provides sufficient headroom in the forward stateroom. If not, modifications can be made with a few simple mouse clicks.
Fleshing out the 3D model involves thousands of these types of checks and tweaks. And as we home in on a final design, modeling provides yet another invaluable resource in the ability to calculate surface areas. This becomes especially important if you are working on a project that is weight sensitive.
One of the primary design parameters of this new boat was to create a final product that would weigh less than 6,000 to 6,500 pounds dry. We are confident we can hit this goal, as we have a lot of experience in cored construction techniques. My father was one of the pioneers of cored construction in the marine industry. He has been producing high-performance sailboats, sport fishing boats and light aircraft for more than 45 years, and knows how to create laminates that are light, strong and durable.
This gave me a tremendous advantage when it came time to do predictive modeling on the weight of the new boat. We laid up some material samples using the appropriate resins and coring materials, and determined the weight of these laminates on a square-foot basis. Using Rhino, I was then able to calculate the total surface area of the hull and topsides, plug in the weights and produce an accurate estimate. My target number is 2,000 pounds for the hull and superstructure. Based on the latest round of calculations, it looks like we can hit these numbers.
The other interesting thing that the CAD process helps visualize is the boat's running surfaces. This new model will be a radical departure from anything we've done before, as it taps into some very advanced hydrodynamic concepts. The bow has an extremely fine entry and a tall profile, with only the slightest flair above the waterline. Hard chines carry all the way aft, and the running surfaces taper to a 5 degree deadrise at the transom. This design should create significant lift, and minimal bow and stern waves. It is expected to operate efficiently at speeds between 10 and 15 knots without having to climb over the “hump” that plagues so-called “semi displacement” hull designs. We also expect it to perform well at higher speeds, as we know some owners may want the option of larger engines and speeds above 20 knots.
Above the hull/deck junction, there is an equally subtle tumblehome, which is not just a styling element. We plan to incorporate a substantial rub rail at this junction, which will be the widest point of the boat. Fenders are always a good idea when docking, but on this boat, you could pivot the bow against a piling without scuffing the gelcoat.
With these general design parameters solidified, the next step was creating a physical model, and once again the CAD software proved useful. Essentially, it allowed me to cut the boat into virtual cross sections, creating profile dimensions that are known as stations to boat builders. Working with these profiles, our in-house design team constructed a 12th scale physical model of the hull, then added basic details of the deck and topside. As I am writing this, the finished creation is going north to the Annapolis boat to be revealed to the boating public.
There will be some tweaks to the design made as we move forward, based on what we learn in development, and on feedback from the public. So far, this has been one of the most highly-anticipated new projects we have ever undertaken, and we've been impressed by the enthusiasm of those following the creative process. We are equally excited here at the factory, There's a sense that we are not just creating a new model, we are defining a new category of cruising boat.
10/1/2015 12:06:53 am
I've been pretty excited since first seeing your post on Facebook regarding the new design. Been looking at several smaller trawlers for a few years now but yours have always been my favorite. Unfortunately, the $500k+ price tag has kept that outside the reach of my realistic retirement dream. This could be a game changer. I am a big fan of the simplistic, easy to maintain & fuel efficient outboard motors that with proper care can be very reliable. The ability to trailer this vessel is a huge plus. Have you estimated a price range yet? I will anxiously continue to follow this project with hopes of resurrecting my cruising / liveaboard retirement dream. Thanks for keeping us posted.
11/23/2015 07:48:55 pm
Have you considered using the "Air Head toilet"? Reviews are good. More room for shower water!
11/24/2015 11:10:29 am
As a matter of fact, we are looking at the Air Head as one possible option. Another advantage would be the elimination of black water and the waste hoses. Most likely, we'll design to accommodate a conventional system, and it would then be easy to omit in favor of the Air Head.
Hope it comes out soon
12/4/2015 01:38:05 pm
Sold my Rosborough 246 last year and am lookin again. The trailer/trawlers is great have been to the Bahamas but trailed down to Fla. big savings in time and money. Would love to know particulars and est. price.......I had twin 50 Merc bigfoot and then replaced them with 60s.....good size.
12/7/2015 10:06:57 am
Will the rub rail have any metal in it?
12/7/2015 12:18:09 pm
Rub rail will most likely be similar to the heavy-duty molded rubber rails used on the current Great Harbour models, These rails are extremely rugged and durable, can absorb a lot of shock,, don't require any special maintenance or polishing, and won't show scuffs.
David A Weinstein
12/7/2015 01:08:18 pm
Any dimensions yet inside and out?
12/7/2015 02:20:24 pm
Looking at a length of around 35 feet, and a beam right at 10-feet, which keeps you within the limits of a simple overwide blanket permit for towing, while also providing room for a comfortable interior
12/7/2015 03:17:32 pm
Wow... a little longer then I thought, with my truck and trailer that will about 60 feet.....lot of lenght for the average guy to have on the highway!
12/7/2015 04:39:13 pm
Yeah, this one is designed as an ocean-capable liveaboard that can be moved legally and reasonably easily by an owner or a transport service, but it's not not really a take it to the lake every weekend model. Based on feedback and the success of this one, there may be a second model around 29 feet and 8 six beam, but that's down the road. Meanwhile, for those owners who plan to move the 35 themselves, we'll likely be planning some towing seminars and bringing in a pro truck driver in for some pointers.
4/29/2016 11:03:51 am
I am really liking the concept. I'm getting close to an early retirement, and my dream is to part time live aboard, so this fills the need. This is purely aesthetics, but I'm not digging the bow design. Looks like a canoe. I like a bow that is gracious. Like the N-37! Plus the narrow design must impede on the livability of the forward stateroom. Is the bowless design necessary?
4/29/2016 12:25:38 pm
4/29/2016 01:40:47 pm
Thank you Pierce for the honest reply. I understand the compromise principal. I do eagerly await the completed hull to see just how limiting the design will be...after all I'm not just wanting to cruise, but part time live aboard, where interior comfort is premium. GH prides it's self with it's galley designs. I'd trade galley for sleeping quarters everyday. It's sort of like newer house designs. The ladies seem to want every little kitchen gadget, granite counters, stainless appliances....then we go out to the restaurants to eat!
4/29/2016 03:58:18 pm
Any idea when it will be ready for trials or viewing? Any ball park gures on price
4/30/2016 11:04:14 pm
8/4/2016 09:30:05 pm
I appreciate wooden boats. usually the older (style) the better. This TT35 reminds me of the flush deck ELCO's from the '30's. Beauty design, and all the stuff much needed for people like us. I understand that hull #1 will not be ready for Annapolis... Oh well, better to get it right first time. Where and when can I see and stand on this boat? I am stoked. I am driving from Ontario.
8/4/2016 10:16:21 pm
We're still hoping to make Annapolis, but if not, we will have models in the water by mid November. Winter would be a good time to get out of a Canadian winter for a Florida sea trial.
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By Ken Fickett
Ken is the founder of Mirage Manufacturing,