Built to cruise fast and confidently offshore, this Sparkman & Stephens-designed 45 allowed NEB to bring together the best of all our departments Engineering, Composites, Joinerwork, Metalwork, Paintwork, and Mechanical & Electrical. Working with the designers at S&S, our Engineering team made certain that all structural components and hardware for the boat was technically correct at each phase of construction. Our Composites team used NEB's proprietary industry-leading Advanced Composite Technology to build a strong, light, and tough hull and deck. NEB's Joinerwork team hand-selected the hardwoods they used to craft the yacht's teak decking, interior furniture, and swimstep. The Metalwork department fabricated a number of custom aluminum and stainless parts for the yacht, from elegantly-curved handrails and stanchions to a special anchor roller/windlass base. NEB's Paintwork team prepped and applied the Awlgrip finish to hull and deck, and (last but certainly not least) our Mechanical & Electrical team solved the puzzle of integrating all the yacht's systems, from engines to genset to watermaker and air-conditioning, into an orderly, easy-to-service layout.
During the course of sea-trialing the S&S 45 Fast Cruiser, and NEB staff have reached one conclusion: This is a beauty we'd love to take to the Bahamas ourselves! If you'd like to talk with NEB about the S&S Fast Cruiser or any custom new construction or refit project please contact us.
Sparkman & Stephens Design No. 2710
The client for this design approached Sparkman & Stephens with a brief that called for a combination of qualities not found in any single powerboat currently in the market. First, the vessel would be designed for long offshore passages at speed between islands of the Bahamas, Caribbean, and Eastern Seaboard, requiring approximately double the normal fuel capacity for a vessel this size. Second, shallow draft with conventional running gear would be required to access favorite cruising grounds amongst these locations. Third, the boat would be required to be quieter than other boats as noise would be tiring during the long passages that would be made on this boat. Last, the interior would be well appointed for a single couple on an extended cruise with lots of storage and an easy-to-maintain finish.
The design brief called for more fuel and sound insulation than typical boats of this size. To accommodate the additional weight from these items, the boat would have to be built strong but light. New England Boatworks was selected as the builder for their renowned light weight, high-quality composite building techniques as employed in the construction of the America’s Cup yacht Stars & Stripes and a myriad of custom racing sailboats. Female molds were constructed for both the hull and deck to minimize the extra weight of fairing and to maintain the crisp corners at chines and strakes that are vital to optimal vessel performance. The hull and deck were constructed of E-glass and SP Systems epoxy over a Core-Cell linear polymer foam core. The hull and deck were post-cured in a temperature-controlled enclosure to further strengthen the epoxy resin properties while not adding weight.
The hull form and appendages draw on the experience of Sparkman & Stephens in the design of fast, seaworthy motor yachts. Starting at the graceful sheerline, the hull shape draws on the Northeast tradition of working vessels intended to face the challenges of the sea. The forward topsides have an appropriate flare to keep the deck dry while running, while the aft topsides are drafted slightly outboard akin to a working vessel. Below the water, the hull form is a completely modern, chined planing hull, featuring a modified warp and aggressive buttock angles. The vessel is fitted with two moderately deep propeller tunnels whose shapes have been optimized to meet the owner’s draft requirements while maximizing propulsive efficiency. The propellers are further protected by a centerline skeg that extends 6” below the propeller tips, yet still the boat has a draft of only 3 feet, 3 inches.
The equipment list features a pair of 440-hp Yanmar turbo-charged diesel engines driving 27-inch 5-bladed propellers. The engine exhaust exits below waterline for quiet running. Other equipment includes a Mastervolt Whisper 12.0 kW generator, a watermaker, and an air-conditioning system.
The arrangement includes a well-appointed single stateroom forward that includes a standard queen-size berth forward and on-centerline, a generous hanging locker and seating area to starboard, and a dresser and entertainment center to port. The head is located aft and to port, and has entrances from both the passageway and the stateroom, allowing it to double as the day head. The head includes a large enclosed shower, linen storage, and a vacuum-powered freshwater toilet.
Across from the head off the passageway is a large wet locker and storage area. From the passageway, stairs lead up and aft into the pilothouse, saloon, and galley area. The helm station is located forward and to starboard and includes a two-person bench seat and a steering wheel located to allow comfortable operation in both the standing and seated positions. Three hundred-sixty degree visibility is achieved via large pilothouse front, side, and aft windows. The U-shaped galley is located forward and to port, and includes an icemaker, full-size sink, four-burner stove with oven, and a below-counter refrigerator. Low-profile cabinets in the overhead provide additional storage for plates and glassware. Aft, a large bench-style settee and dining table are located to port, opposing two freestanding chairs to starboard. A rotating and retracting flat screen television is mounted inside cabinetry just aft of the helm bench, which has a flip-up face available to provide extra counter space.
The cockpit is accessed via a sliding, weathertight door. The staircase leading down to the cockpit sole hinges upward to provide engine room access. Top-loading storage space is located forward and to starboard. The cockpit is large and includes full-length bench seats to comfortably seat eight. A built in propane grill is located in the aft starboard corner. Permanent stairs are located at the aft ends of the bench seating, and a removable handrail can be installed into port and starboard deck sockets for easy boarding. The sole of the cockpit is finished in hand-selected teak.
Handrails are located on the pilothouse roof and transition into the elongated pulpit for safety going forward. Footholds are installed on the front of the pilothouse, and lead up the pilothouse roof, where the tender is stored. An aluminum crane powered with a 12-volt winch handles deployment and storage of the tender. Five opening deck hatches, all with screens and shades, are distributed between the cabintop roof and the pilothouse roof for ventilation and light. All deck hardware, including cleats and custom chocks, are aluminum.
With skilled craftsmanship and attention to detail by New England Boatworks, the design experience, naval architecture and solid engineering of Sparkman & Stephens, and the input of an experienced client, this new design is not only good-looking but stands out with a combination of features not found in any other boat of this size.