Saturday, March 22, 2014


Have you seen the Garcia Exploration 45? Interesting way to integrate a doghouse type design. I really like the looks and feature on this one. 

Yes, I talked about it. But it deserves a better post with the story behind that boat:

Jimmy y Cornell is one of the more experienced cruisers around, have circumnavigated for 3 times with different types of boats, done more than 200 000NM, created the ARC and later the World Cruising Club.
 In his search for the perfect bluewater cruiser, his last boat, a 1998 OVNI 43 used on the last 5 years circumnavigation was by far the best of all and he didn't saved praises about it and its bluewater qualities. You can see the boat and what he says about it here.

Cornell remained faithful to the aluminium but started to gradually leave OVNI and approached Allures that he started to consider better than the OVNI, more modern and with a  better design. So it was no surprise when he announced that had chosen Allures for making the boat for its  4th circumnavigation (this time by the Northwest passage) but it was a surprise when Allures announced that they were not going to modify an Allures 45 to Cornell specifications but that they would take the opportunity to create a new boat, one following Cornell’s ideas about what should be a boat for extreme navigation. Instead of introducing it on the Allures line they decided that it would be a Garcia (a brand that belongs to Allures).   

The boat uses the Allures 45 hull and a deck saloon concept that allows for a chart table in frontal position and a joystick to command the boat from the inside. From the interior station there is a 270ยบ view around. Besides that different interior concept the boat deck is made of aluminum (composite on the Allures) and certainly the hull is more reinforced since the boat weights considerable more than an Allures 45: 14100 kg for 11800Kg.
 That difference in weight has to do also with the option of making the boat all in aluminum (more weight and more need of ballast). The boat will have water ballast tanks and features a funny looking forward cabin “window” inclined the “wrong way”. That has as objective to protect the interior from the sun of the tropics a thing I am not sure it can be done since there is no way to prevent it from coming in by the side windows.
Certainly a very interesting boat and the proof is that even if it is a very atypical boat, Garcia is already making more three, beside the one for Cornell and they are launching a new model to join the Exploration 45, a 50, certainly using the hull from the Allures 51.

Personally, and having no intentions to cruising in very cold climates I would prefer the standard Allures 45 that I find better looking, has a bigger cockpit and it is certainly considerably less expensive. It is faster and also provides some (more limited) view to the the exterior. A boat more suited for a more mixed utilization, not only to voyage but to coastal cruise or even to cruise in hot climates.
There are also several Allures 45 circumnavigating and some (44 model) have done Arctic voyages. The one used on the movie, was fully equipped for a circumnavigation that is probably already happening. A great boat, at an unbelievable price, for an aluminum hull with a high quality interior. It is not surprising that OVNI has been experiencing some problems lately.

Now if you really want to make the Nortwest passage or even the more difficult Norteast passage not to mention Antarctic explorations, the  Exploration 45 or 50 it is with no doubt a more suited boat.

I've been perusing Cornell's website as the Exploration's build continues. I find it's looks very appealing and very much like the way they've designed the interior helm station at the front of the salon. I haven't seen a price yet on it. So, i'm interested in knowing the price difference between the Exploration and the Allure 45. I believe the latter is priced around $450k (base model).
 I actually think the decks of both boats are a combination of aluminum and grp. I vaguely recall seeing a picture where the aluminum deck extends a few feet in from the boats' perimeters all the way around. Then, grp covers the rest. Corrections welcomed.

Hi! Opc,
Actually no. TheGarcia 45 deck is entirely made of aluminium while the one on Allures line is made of composite (the roof of the Garcia 45 cabin is composite also). That is one of the things that explain the difference in weight. Having it in aluminium, that weights more and also the deck saloon configuration will raise the boat CG and that will demand a correction to lower it, trough more ballast to have a similar final stability, comparing with the Allures 45.
Sure, the boat will be more though all built in aluminium, but then it is always possible to make it more strong, but more strong in this case means heavier and the question is: It will be needed? An Allures 44 (previous model) sailed extensively in high latitudes and they never had any problem in any boat regarding that system. Probably it is justified on an exploration boat like the Garcia 45 but useless and detrimental for the sail performance on the Allures 45 or any voyage boat to be used on a more "normal"way, I mean to circumnavigate without explorations on high latitude in mind. In fact they had made that dual material building system one of their strong selling points when they presented the Allures line some years ago and they said that type of construction was on the base of the very good stability / sail performance of the boat regarding its weight. In fact one of the differences regarding the OVNI was that their reserve stability was better and they attributed that, partially at least, to the height advantages of this system. They say about it:

"Composite superstructures on an aluminum hull offer a number of advantages when compared to aluminum superstructures:
- lighter topsides;
- improved temperature insulation;
- better phonic insulation;
- elimination of any hazard of electrolysis due to rustproof topsides;
- comfort of smooth shapes inside the cockpit;
- elegance of a line drawn without any manufacturing constraint.

For all these reasons this solution is often adopted on larger yachts.. The composite superstructure/aluminum deck bondage is performed horizontally according to a sealing and riveted method.This bonding method was: 
- conceived by Berret-Racoupeau Yacht Design; 
- validated in theory by Tensyl (finite element method of calculation - ..with aircraft); 
- validated in practice by Rochefort-based CRITT ( the Regional Center for innovation and Technology Transfer who created the adhesives for the Queen Mary II). As is the case with cars, the adhesive was subjected - under extremes of temperature - to fatigue and ageing tests. 

The safety ratio of the bonding reaches as high as 10, i.e. this bonding is calculated to undergo a level of stress ten times superior to the maximum level of stress the yacht will actually have to bear. Tests on samples have proved that, thanks to both the materials selected and the geometry of the bonding, the dilatation due to variations of temperature are minimal - the more so since the expansion coefficients of aluminum (21) and the composite (17) can compare.  Finally, we have selected an adhesive which polymerizes in a damp atmosphere. Not only do the mechanical properties not suffer any alteration when exposed to the sea but improve as they age. Our research brought us an ANVAR award. Our process is patent-protected.

I actually just went and looked at the two companies' brochures.
The Expedition brochure states, "hull, deck and coachroof structure in marine aluminum alloy."
The Allures 45 states, "hull & deck in marine aluminum alloy"
I guess I was wrong. But it looks like both decks are aluminum alloy. Any idea what the Exploration will cost? base price.

I checked out to see what was going on regarding that alteration of the building techniques/materials and you are right, looking to both files, in French and English they say that the deck on the 45 is in aluminium so I went deeper to see if they had altered their way of building and what I found was this: As you can see on the top of the page, on the 39 the  deck and the cabin as well as the cockpit are in composite. 
On the 45 the deck is effectively in aluminium but that really represents a very small surface, since the cabin and the cockpit are in composite. As the cabin extends itself forward, the difference is not much (see the picture on the right). On the Garcia Exploration all is in aluminium except the top of the cabin, a relatively small area. See the picture on top of the page.

Regarding price I have heard nothing but I am sure it will be a more expensive boat.

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