Sunday, March 3, 2019


Fantastic looking new boat with a very curious story: the owner wanted a top cruiser-racer, one that allowed him to win races in real time and that was suited also for some cruising with the family. The boat he was interested in was the Swan 50 but the 3.5m draft made it unsuitable for racing and cruising on the Baltic, his cruising and racing ground.

He talked with Håkan Södergren, a Swedish NA known for designing narrow hulled fast boats, among them the (Swedestar 370 and 415) but without real experience in top sailboat racing design and asked him to design a kind of a Swan 50 but with a lifting keel and the result is the Shogun 50.
Above Shogun 50, Below Swan 50
In reality Södergren did not really make a kind of Swan 50 with a lifting keel, he let himself be carried away by his preference for narrow boats and designed a boat that in what regards the bow and length resembles the Swan 50 but a much more narrower boat with a more conventional transom.

Maybe the conditions on the Baltic, with short period small waves and with a lot of variable and weak to medium winds, justifies a boat more specified to light winds and upwind sailing but I believe that in a more broad range of circumstances the Swan 50 is a better option in what regards racing and hull design.

Comparing dimensions (m and kg) first Shogun then Swan: HL - 15.22, 15.24; LWL - 14.20, 14.00; Beam - 3.88, 4.20; Displacement - 7800, 8250; Ballast -3500, 3450; B/D 45%, 42%, Draft - 3.50/2.00, 3.50; SA/D - 34.9, 39.4; D/L - 76.2 - 83.7.

Above Shogun 50, Below Swan 50
We can see that the main difference is the beam that is considerably bigger on the Swan, that the ballast, draft and type of keel are very similar, having the Shogun  50kg ballast more and that in what regards displacement the Shogun is 450 kg lighter.

I don't believe that they will manage to build the boat with that weight, assuming that is not specifically for sailing only on the Baltic but also to race on Oceanic conditions and has the needed strength for that.

That is hard to believe that Rosättra shipyard, where quite traditional sailboats are built ( Linjett ), without a big experience building in carbon and having the considerable added weight of a lifting keel can build a considerably lighter yacht than the Swan that is built by Nautor, with a huge experience with carbon boats and designed by JK that has a big experience designing very light top racers.

Shogun 50
Sure, the smaller beam of the Shogun 50 will contribute to make it lighter but that will be compensated by the extra weight of the lifting keel. We will see when the boat is built if they can make ir to the specified weight.

I would say that it is to be expected a deviation between 200 and 500 kg and that will change considerably those ratios.Anyway we can see that already the swan has a bigger SA/D indicating a more powerful boat, meaning, that even considering that they can build to specs, the superior hull form stability of the Swan is not compensated by the bigger RM generated by the Shogun superior B/D. We can see also that the Shogun is a lighter boat with a smaller D/L.

Both boats have all beam brought back but I prefer the Swan transom design that is more innovative and will contribute to a superior hull form stability at bigger heel angles, close upwind with full power.
Swan 50

The superior finesse (lower CF) of the Shogun and smaller D/L will give it an advantage in lighter winds and maybe a slightly better performance upwind but I don't believe that advantage can be compensated by the Swan better performance in all other points of sail, specially on a beam reach and on a broad reach.

Anyway, I cannot wait to see the two boats competing on the water and I have no doubt that the Shogun 50 will be a very, very fast boat, as the Swan 50 is. You have only to look at the results on the last Middle Sea Race where in compensated it made only 6th in ORC but in real time was the first cruiser-racer to arrive, faster than a Swan 82 and faster than a Mylius 60 only beaten by race boats.

A final word about the interiors that are much a question of taste, assuming that the ones of the Shogun have the high quality of those of the Swan, that are not only bright but also refined with a bit of classic taste on the leather finish on many details, on the Shogun they seem to me almost military in design and color. Expensive certainly, but kind of dark and cold.

1 comment:

  1. Hi,

    It will be interesting to find out the final weight but from what I hear it actually seems that they will come in under the target weight of 7800kg, maybe even 7500kg. That will be ready to sail, but of course excluding sails :)