All the latest F-22 news can still be seen on the Latest News Page
June 12, 2016
The recent Spain delivery has been a major milestone, as I was very happy with the boat configuration, and now consider the development phase over. The F-22 features and systems are finally exactly how I like them, and it is time to pull the trigger on full volume production. I have always been reluctant to do this while parts of the boat were not just right, or as simple as I like, as one would then be mass producing a boat that could have a few flaws. A common problem in production, but something I have always prefered to minimize or eliminate.
There are many more detail improvements and features implemented that cannot be publicly detailed yet, but these will be covered as they can be released on the Latest News Page.
One of the last new developments has been an optional wider folding beam for when boat is being
docked folded. Increases stability significantly and makes the boat much safer in strong cross winds if
being left docked while folded. Will also be implementing (as time permits) a variable folded beam that
will allow the boat to be set at the maximum legal trailering beam in any area. Makes it as stable as
it can be while folded, and this can be an important factor with the taller F-22R rig.
And just to show how stable the standard F-22 is while folded, Farrier Marine mold maker Stu Brown is
shown hiking out from one float on an F-22, with hardly any effect. We used this method to deliberately
capsize an early 19' Tramp for a righting test many years ago, and without a mast it took nine (9!) of us
hiking out one side to get it to go over. So very stable.
However, stability while folded will always be limited compared to full unfolded beam, and care should
always be taken with an F-22 or any large F-boat in strong cross winds particularly during sharp turns.
May 15, 2016
The F-22 main hull plug is now made, and being revealed as the mold is lifted off.
The hull plug is to be shipped to the Philippines, along with many other plugs and molds, where more
molds will be made for Philippine production to start. This plug has been a large investment of both
time and money, but it has to be good as up to six hull molds may need to be taken off.
Meanwhile, hull no 228 is nearing completion and will be shipped this month to Spain
Just about ready to go outside for mast and rig to go on. Other items in picture are various F-22 plugs
and molds, plus assorted equipment for F-33s and F-45s that will be loaded into the next container
for the Philippines.
Hull no 231 is now made, and no 232 will soon follow
April 8, 2016
Assembly line as at end of March, 2016 - starting to actually get a line.
But the big news this month is at the Clark factory
March 18, 2016
F-22 No 227 leaving factory yard and on way to Dubai
Meanwhile, back in the factory:
F-22 #228 Is nearing completion, with deck glued on, and ready to assemble with floats and
beams (in foreground) next week.
While the deck for #229 has now had the non-skid applied, and is ready to fit out. It will next be
glued on the hull (which is finished) and this would be the quickest ever. Hull no. 230 is also finished
and deck is made. Finally starting to get a better production flow.
The worlds best shipping cradle? Will be used to ship #228 and can be later used as a yard trolley, or
it can be fitted on a suitable trailer frame
We have also been working with Southern Spars to develop a premium carbon mast for the F-22R, and the
first two test masts have now been made. Still a little work to do yet, but these quality masts should become
available for the F-22R later this year. We will continue to develop our own carbon mast as a lower cost
alternative, and one of these is on our factory test boat. The only issue with these has been finding a glue
good enough, but it looks like this issue may now be solved.
Assembled at Southern Spars
We have also been building a test jig for test breaking foils and beams, and this should be ready
for action next week. First job will be to test break one of our F-32SR curved foils, and then an
F-22 beam which has been set aside for this for some time (it had cosmetic problems). I have
test broken F-25, F-27, and F-31 beams in the past, and the data from these tests was used to
design the F-22 beams, so they should test very well. It will be interesting to see.
We continue to work on establishing volume F-22 production in the Philippines, with one of our staff having just returned from the Clark
factory this week, while I will also be heading there again soon. More plugs and molds are also to be shipped very soon. Main issue at
present is establishing a good supply of materials. It has to be the right type, and top quality long lasting brands. We are also looking for
experienced mold and fiberglass production staff for the Philippine factory, and applications are invited from anyone with such
experience, and interested in working in the Philippines.
February 12, 2016
No. 227 on the trailer at the launching ramp. This boat is being shipped to Dubai for Robert Lakos.
On the water and preparing to raise the mast
Mast up and ready to go
Under sail, but jib only this time. We found a bolt rope problem with the mainsail that prevented it
going up. Easily rectified, but not on the boat.
However, it performed very well under jib only, tacking easily.
Now back at the dock, and soon to be disassembled and packed into the container for shipping. Up until
now it has been our policy to test launch and sail every boat, but this will soon end, as sails are now
fully sorted out (bolt rope issue found and solved). Future boats will still be test launched to check
foils, folding, and for leaks, but sailing adds several hours, and will no longer be done as a matter of
routine, unless specifically requested. This is how it was for every F-27 after around boat #7, and our
priority now is to speed deliveries up.
Factory view at end of 2015. We have just had a big clean out of old or unused molds/parts etc., and
the decks are now all clear for some serious production next year. There are three hulls and decks in
the background (and off to the right), ready to finish.
All going well, we should double production in 2016, and even more so once the Philippine factory
is fully setup and comes on line
December 24th, 2015
Our latest two F-22Rs outside the factory, making it five F-22s built for 2015. One (at the back) is going
to Dubai while the other is our new factory test boat, and sailed for the first time last week:
The carbon mast just raised, with the optional 'no halyard' furling jib using a structural grade anti-torque
furling line. Lighter, less load on mast, reduces deck clutter/lines, while sail can still be lowered via zipper
luff should the structural KZ furler ever jam in some way (unlikely).
Furling boomless mainsail on, neatly rolled, and all ready to go, transom again floating very high (light).
Wind came up a little too much (over 20 knots) for the first test sail so we went with reefed main only,
which worked extremely well. Boat speed easily exceeded 10 knots, while it went to windward like
a train, tacking easily. Mast is rotating on its own (no control needed) in the above photo (downwind).
This boat will be used to test and further refine all the sail control systems, and to finalize single-handed
rigging and launching so as to make it easy. This launching show another few small details that needed
improvement, and once done I can write the step by step rigging procedure for the F-22. The local ramp
is not very good, being a little too exposed, with frequent strong winds, and minimal facilities. So if
single handed rigging and launching is possible here (as expected) then it will be possible anywhere.
Production decals are now also finalized, plus every NZ built boat comes with my signature inside
November 7th, 2015
This is our own Factory test boat, which has been sitting to one side (and neglected) over the winter,
but spring is here and it was time to get it ready for sailing. Note the carbon wing mast - it's one of
ours, which we will continue to develop as there are several advantages. Main problem has been the
glue join holding the two halves together, as it is very difficult getting the right glue, and to ensure it
is applied correctly over the full length.
However, we are now using mechanical fasteners as a backup, until we can be sure the glue join is
100% reliable. This mast is still not available for sale again yet, as it cannot be warranted, but we
also have some Southern Spars carbon masts in the process of being built, and these should be
available for deliveries next year.
Main being tried for the first time - should be ready for sailing soon!
Factory photo as of Saturday November 7, 2015. Factory boat is at foreground left, with hull no 7 on
the far side in final stages of assembly, and No. 8 in middle waiting for deck and hull to be joined.
No. 7 will be shipped to Dubai, in the UAE, by the end of the year, which will make five F-22
deliveries for 2015. Still slow, but now matching the F-27 production rate of 1986.
We then doubled F-27 deliveries in 1987, and should be able to equal or do even better next year with
the F-22, particularly once the new Clark Factory comes online. We eventually reached two F-27s per
week in 1990, but the F-22 will need to exceed this significantly over the next few years to meet a
much greater number of orders.
September 26, 2015
Bill Darnell's F-22 has now been packed into the shipping container and is on its way to Phoenix, Arizona.
On the trailer, and ready to be rolled back into the container
Just some final touches
Pushing it back in - only 6mm (1/4") to spare per side.
Walking in the port float and beams
All packed in and ready to go. Very easy to unload and should not take any more than 30 minutes
Container now picked up and on its way
Paul Steinhardt has purchased BOOM, the original factory boat, and having previously owned an F-25, Sprint, and F-9A it was interesting
to hear his opinion. Paul writes:
Thanks for the note, and we have really been enjoying the new boat. I am amazed at how it performs for it's size. It would seem to me
that it is very close performance wise in a number of conditions to the F-9. It also has a big boat feel when compared to the F-25 and the
Boat hardly moves when you jump on board and forward buoyancy is excellent compared to say the Sprint. Helm is really light and the
sheet loads compared to the F-9 are easy for us older guys!! I was always worried about how wet the boat might be but to my delight
this is not the case.
Raising / lowering the rig is a treat compared to the F-9. All up I am really impressed with the capability, performance and build quality.
This is my 4th boat of your designs and it is a quantum leap. Seems like you have really got it nailed with this design.
We have had pretty good results in some of the racing that we have done. We have fitted a much stiffer top batten to the old main which
has made a big improvement. Also much easier to furl the main on the batten as opposed to rolling it on it's own.
Keep up the good work.
September 19, 2015
Bill Darnell's hull number 6 (our next delivery) going through its test launching and a short sail:
Arriving at the ramp
Side Guide Post in its trailering position
Now raised - this post is used on the leeward side when there are high cross winds at the ramp, and
it will keep the boat centered on the trailer.
Launched and alongside a popular 22' monohull trailer sailer - one can see the huge difference.
Mast quickly went up and all is now ready for the test sail where everything went perfectly.
This is the first F-22 with the kickup centerboard, which also performed exactly as expected.
Back at the dock a short while later with mast lowered. The 'plug in' seatbacks were very comfortable
and worked extremely well. No. 6 will be packed into the container and shipped to Arizona next week.
Next boat will be heading to Dubai, in the UAE
September 6th, 2015
Factory as at September 5th 2015. Hull no. 6 is ready for delivery after a test sail, while No. 7 is fitted
out and ready for the deck to go on. This is the first boat to be fully fitted out (as it should be) before fitting
the deck, which will greatly speed up final assembly. No 8 just behind is at a similar stage and just waiting
on the deck to be demolded and fitted out. No. 9 is in the mold and with interior being formed.
No. 6 having the mast trial raised. Some inclement weather with 35 knot winds have held up the test sail,
but it is supposed to improve over the next few days. It can then be packed into the container and
shipped to US owner Bill Darnell, who is patiently waiting.
August 30th, 2015
Markus Stacher's F-22 #5 is now sailing in Switzerland, and Markus is very happy
On the lake with young Jan Stacher getting the best view.
Meanwhile Bill Darnell's F-22 #6 is ready to be delivered to Arizona, and we will start packing it
into the container once test sailed. This is the best equipped boat we have built so far. so there has
been a lot of detail work and fine tuning. However, #7 is now very close behind.
Meanwhile, the first F-22 molds and plugs have just arrived in the Philippines where they will be used to
setup volume production. Latest photos from Clark factory can be seen on the Latest News page - F-22
photos will follow soon.
July 18th, 2015
But this time it is being used to ship F-22 plugs and molds to the Philippines where they will be used
to setup Philippine F-22 production.
Deck Plug being squeezed in - and yes, it fitted - just. This will be used to make the second deck mold,
and once we have more molds then production can be doubled, tripled and so on.
Float plugs waiting to be loaded.
Meanwhile the next container to arrive will be for Bill Darnell's F-22 No. 6 which is in the final stages:.
Interior is finished, and only the final assembly of beams and floats remains.
Now that we are shipping plugs out, suddenly we have more floor space.
Finished cockpit seatbacks now in position, making this easily the most comfortable cockpit I have ever
sat in. When not in use they simply unplug and store under the cockpit seats
Centerboard control lines can be seen at right
Close up of centerboard control lines. I have used centerboards for years, and they are a great asset in
shallow water due to their ability to kick back and up should they hit bottom. Centerboards can be tricky
to design so that they work well, and the F-22 is the best yet. Only down side of centerboards has been
a tendency for water to leak out of the control line holes at speed, while sometimes even a geyser of water
can shoot up. However, a new baffle system inside the case should prevent this with the F-22, plus the
lines are a close fit in the exit holes in the cover plate due to plastic bushings. A clam cleat is used to hold
board down, as these only have limited strength and will let board kick back before the boat is damaged.
If needed, they can also be further weakened by filing the teeth a little. Red line is up, blue line is down.
The other big advantage of a centerboard is a roomier and much more open interior.
Meanwhile, the second F-22 sent to Europe has just arrived in Switzerland. See story and photos.
July 1, 2015
It has been a long haul, with only two deliveries in all of last year, but two so far the past 6 months, with another this month, and very likely
another next month. Compared to the F-27's first two years of production we are two boats ahead, with 5 months left in the year. I eventually
got the F-27 to two a week within 5 years and this has never been bettered by any other equivalent trailerable multihull. Production target
with the F-22 is to reach six a week within 5 years - anyone want to take bets?
Bill Darnell's F-22 No. 6 is almost finished and it will be shipped to Arizona this month. This is the
first centerboard version, and the lack of daggerboard case certainly opens up the interior (mast support
post visible). Cushions being fitted tomorrow. Note also the 'plug in' seat backs - we are experimenting
with the best way to finish these, but will most likely go with the full back rests as shown on left
(plywood mock up only at this stage).
F-22 No. 7, the next in line for delivery - hull fitout is complete, and ready for the deck to go on.
This one will be going to the United Arab Emirates.
F-22 No. 8 - deck and hull now made, hull shown just after infusion. It is now being fitted out and will
be heading for Spain once ready.
The photos above are a bit factory/work related, but we do have a more interesting one just in from Neville McElroy below, showing
his F-22 Gumphy finishing just one second behind a Twiggy during a race on Pittwater (Sydney) last weekend:
Twiggy is a famous Crowther racing design, so it was a good effort by Gumphy. Neville is now upsizing
to an F-82 on which he intends to fit F-85SR floats. Gumphy has already been sold and will be shipped
May 31, 2015
Starting to load into the container
Now all the way in
Floats and beams now in place
and finally - the mast
Truck ready to pick up - these side loading trucks (NZ invention) are fantastic and make everything easy.
Lifting the container on
...and on its way. Next boat is heading to the USA (and hopefully sometime in June). Still getting
May 2nd, 2015
Progress continues on a steady and methodical path, as we start to ramp up the production rate. Any production bottle necks
are being eliminated, with any aspect too slow or difficult to do, being either revised or eliminated, so as to establish a good
Factory as it looked this weekend. Our new factory boat is at left having just been launched for the first
time last week. This boat has been neglected for a while as we concentrated on production, but it needed
to be launched in order to test a new outboard bracket system, details below.
Elsewhere in the photo, Bill Darnells #6 (heading for USA) can be seen just behind with the deck now on,
while Markus Stacher's #5 (at center) is basically finished and just waiting on its mast. The bow of #7 deck
(heading for UAE) can just be seen at far right, while the hull (finished) is still in the mold at rear. No. 8
deck is made and can be seen still in the mold at right center, while #8 hull will be made as soon as #7 is
removed from mold. Some F-33 beams can be seen at bottom center, while a new shipment of foam is at
lower left, this being the complete pre-cut foam kits for two boats
I'm also going through all the features and options, and anything not quite right, or that annoys, is being improved or eliminated,
as all the systems must be simple and work really well. One such aspect that needed improvement was the molded outboard
bracket, as while it was one of the best I have ever made, I was still not 100% happy with it.
The problem with fixed brackets (as it was) is that they just don't suit every boat. Light boats need a deep set bracket so that prop
can get a good bite in a chop, whereas heavy boats need a higher set bracket, otherwise prop can drag when tilted. There is just
no 'one fits all' solution with fixed brackets, and we were seeing some cavitation at times on light boats, even though the motor is
located well forward of the stern.
I then noticed that a home builder in Australia had used an adjustable height bracket mounted on the hull side, which just looked
right. This is an advantage of having home builders, as numerous minds are then working on many aspects, and they can come
up with some brilliant and simple solutions at times. The way of mounting the bracket was a bit complicated however, so I set
about designing a simple and easy to make system that would fit on the production boat and it can be seen below:
This consists of a simple molded mounting pod that is glued and bolted onto the main hull side, to which an
aluminum pivoting bracket is then bolted. The stern continues to be kept clean and uncluttered, while the
side mount allows outboard to be kept further forward with the prop in a much better position. The adjustable
bracket then adds the option of variable height, which means every condition can be covered. The above
photo shows bracket at mid position which still gives plenty of prop depth, even on our freshly launched
factory boat, which has yet to be fitted out, so it was ultra light. The transom is floating 150mm (6")
clear of the water!
But one stills need more depth for the biggest chop, which is no problem, as motor can be lowered
another 100mm (4"). Now that is a deep set prop, and will make the F-22 very good at motoring into
a large chop whenever needed.
Motor is still completely accessible and turnable either way, in the shallow or truly deep set position
Tilt on the standard bracket height will be high enough for all except heavily loaded boats
But there is even more height with the top bracket position. The molded mounting pod should also
fit on plan built F-22s, and once this is established we will be able to supply these to home builders.
This photo shows just how light this boat was, with transom way above the water, yet the outboard is still
plenty deep enough
The single most important thing now is to get F-22s rolling out the door in NUMBERS, and this will be our main focus this year.
Part of this also includes establishing a second factory in the Philippines as detailed at New Factory
April 3, 2015
Now that Hull No 4 has been shipped to England (see below) we can finally resume serious work on all the subsequent boats, progress on which has suffered somewhat as we concentrated on getting No. 4 finished and shipped.
Hull No. 5 (for Markus Stacher in Switzerland) is now being finished off, and this should be basically done
over the next week. The only hold up will be waiting for the new F-22R aluminum wing mast, which is not
due to arrive on site until later this month. This will now become the standard mast for the F-22R, which has
allowed the base price to lowered by $4000. The carbon wing mast will now be an option.
The interior of No. 5 is very basic (Stage 2 kit) with only the cushions to be fitted.
Meanwhile, hull No. 6 deck is being fitted out while main hull will be joined up with beams and folding
system (shown in cockpit) later next week. Then the deck can go on. Things are finally starting to speed
up, and it will not be long now until No. 6 will be on its way to owner Bill Darnel in the USA.
Deck No. 7 is now about to be trimmed, with a Deck 'Splash' in place which shows where to cut openings
or drill all the necessary holes (very quickly). All such things took a lot of time to develop and make, but
now they will start to pay off. No. 7 will be heading to the United Arab Emirates
Deck No. 8 has now also be started (going to Spain). Mold has been gelcoated, followed by a light glass
backup layer. All the structural layers and foam core are now being placed prior to all being resin
March 24, 2015
Shipped! Hull no. 4 has now left our building and is on its way to Southampton, (UK). The following photos show how we load
containers in New Zealand, with the New Zealand invented side loading trucks. Try to get one of these when taking delivery, as it
sure makes it easy, with no crane costs. Normally the shippers allow the container to stay with you for 5 to 7 days at no extra cost.
Truck has arrived, parks next to the container, and deploys stabilizing legs
Now it brings the two mini cranes over and hooks on the chains
Starting to lift - the whole operation is controlled by the driver standing alongside, with a remote control
Container now on the truck
Legs being retracted
And on its way
The whole pickup operation (or drop off) takes about 5 minutes.
March 22nd, 2015
Hull No. 4 has now been packed into the container for shipping to the UK, and it is scheduled to be shipped this week:
There is plenty of room to ship one boat in a container, but it will be a little more tight with two.
Container for No. 4, which is the first fully finished production boat and has taken a while to complete,
having been used to set the standards, while establishing the correct procedures for all following boats. It
is thus the most carefully built F-22 ever. But things will soon start to speed up significantly, as all the
various systems and parts are now fully developed, which will allow a proper production flow to be
established, and the boats can now be put together much more efficiently.
The electrical system was the final major item to be designed and completed, and this required several
custom molded parts, to ensure it was setup properly. Future boats can now have the electrical system
installed earlier for maximum efficiency
Battery area with main battery switch. Just a small Kayak battery is shown, but battery recess (black area)
will take a full size battery. Weight is low down and forward where it should be, and out of the way,
being under the seat. The underneath area can also be used for storing heavy items like canned food etc.
Main cabin light - all lights are LEDs
Navigation lights use custom moldings to orientate them properly, being vertical and parallel to centerline
as they should be. Also much easier to wire in, the awkward and sometimes troublesome wiring to a
pulpit mounted light being eliminated.
But the big news is a new production facility being setup for the F-22 in the Philippines, where a large
factory has now been leased next to the F-33 existing factory at the Clark Freeport Zone (near Subic
Bay). This will be primarily used for F-22 production, but with a small area on the side being used
to develop a new 'mystery design' - more details soon.
Plenty of room and this will double our floor space. F-22 production will not happen overnight, but the
required tooling will be shipped from New Zealand next month, so setup can begin. It is then intended
to manufacture the standard F-22 at Clark, under the Farrier Marine name, while F-22Rs and all other
future variations will continue to be developed or built in New Zealand. The high volume then possible
will finally get the current long waiting list down to a more reasonable level.
February 21st, 2015
Hull No. 4 is now about to be shipped to the UK:
This is the first standard F-22 and is pictured just before its water test. These are done to check
everything works as it should, and No. 4 passed with ease, nothing being wrong. I also took
some video during the water test, and this can be seen below. This is mostly unedited raw phone
footage, but it gives a good overall picture:
(with much more detail on the lowering/raising system)
No. 4 is a major milestone as all the production systems have now been fully developed, and deliveries
should finally start to speed up. We built one F-27 the first year, one the second, but were doing two
per week just four years later. Hopefully it will take less than 4 years this time. Meanwhile, the F-33
(which is being developed in parallel with the F-22) is also going well:
The first centerboard version, with centerboard now in place.
Shape below hull is exactly the same as the daggerboard version, but slot is longer. Hence there
will be a little more drag, but the more roomy feel inside is significant. Board can also kick back
should bottom be touched, and this is a nice safety feature in shallow waters
Centerboard retracted - it is designed to protrude slightly from slot as shown, when on water, to
fill slot and minimize drag. Will still retract fully in for when on trailer.
February 8th, 2015
Ron and Ken Godwin's Hull No. 3 has now been launched in Australia:
This was a Stage 2 Kit and has been finished off by Ron and Ken in Brisbane.
First time extending the floats on the water
At the dock for the first time - Ron and Ken have gone with the optional boom
Meanwhile, Peter Hackett's BOOM! is back sailing with the optional F-22R alloy wing mast, and showed excellent speed
in the recent 'Surf to City' Race. Finished 5th over the line behind bigger more race orientated boats, after having crossed
tacks with them for the first hour, and 15 minutes ahead of a well performing F-82.
Interior of Nigel Armstrongs Hull No. 4, which is about to be shipped to the UK.
Robert Lakos's Hull No. 7 now infused - this will be going to the UAE
Hull No. 5 now joined up and folding
January 22, 2015
Finally - some line progress - after many weeks of development Hull #6 is taken out of the mold.
Just a little more work on centerboard case area and deck can go on. Hull #7 can now be started
The main holdup of the past month or so - the interior side mold is now finished, and ready to make
parts. A little hard to figure out how it works/fits from this view, but it does...
January 12, 2015
The next delivery - hull #4 with screacher being checked out.
Jib is looking good too. Now only waiting on cushions (with a custom fabric) to be finished
...and the main holdup the past month or so - the interior mold with recesses for sink and stove units.
But now almost finished. The carbon mast for our next factory boat (at left) can also be seen (at right).
December 21, 2014
Hull #4 now outside and with the first base F-22 aluminum mast raised.
Mainsail being tried out
A new alloy F-22R wing mast option as made by Allyacht Spars in Australia. This is now available as
our own carbon wing mast still needs further refining to ensure it is 100% reliable, plus we cannot yet
make them fast enough. An alloy mast is heavier, but it is also less expensive, and the base F-22R
price will thus be reduced accordingly soon. The same carbon fiber foot will be used, as also used
on the standard F-22 alloy mast (photo below at bottom of September 6th Update).
Hull #5 with Swiss owner Markus, who dropped in recently to see how his boat was going.
The first centerboard interior, with the centerboard case offset to port. A much more open feel with just
a simple mast support tube to be installed. Head floor area can be seen forward, and head opening panels
(April 18th Update) can be seen on starboard side. Being held up right now while awaiting seat back and
galley components to be made, but it will soon have the deck on.
The final pop-top configuration, pop-top being down, and with two lockable eyes each side (only one
would need a lock. There is an automatic lock inside forward, that holds the forward end down.
To open, one simply pulls pop-top aft slightly, then lifts aft end up and slides forward.
The semi-open position, having slid far enough forward on polyethylene slides to give easy access.
From here it will lift up to the full height position as shown earlier (January 1st Update).
November 23rd, 2014
The next delivery - Hull #4 with daggerboard being trial fitted.
Outside for the first time, and washed down. Now just waiting on nets and sails.
Also almost ready for delivery, a trailer with two floats and other parts for an Auckland plan F-22 builder
Our next factory F-22, Hull #2, now also getting a washdown, prior to being rigged up.
Has been neglected for quite a while, as we did interiors etc., but we can now finally get it finished
November 4th, 2014
The next boat almost ready for shipping, this being hull no. 4 which will be heading for the UK. It is
being shipped on the basic trailer frame which will have UK running gear added after arrival.
Deliveries remain slow due to interior molds being made, and numerous other areas still being refined
and improved, but almost there. Our current situation is described almost perfectly by an article
I wrote in 1987 (Meanwhile Back at The Factory...) about F-27 progress at that time:
Just substitute F-22 for F-27, and you have virtually same situation as we have now in 2014. Back then
we were producing an F-27 every 5 weeks, and three years later reached two every week, which would
make short work of our current back log of orders. Fortunately I think we will get to that rate much
quicker this time, as the F-22 will eventually be a much simpler boat to build, plus second time around
is always easier.
However, the F-27 was kept very conventional in all areas other than the beams and folding system,
whereas the F-22 is new throughout and has been pushing boundaries in just about every aspect. This
has made development slower, as not every new feature is going to work as it should first time up.
Carbon mast has probably been the main source of delay, as being completely new, this has needed
considerable development work, something never needed with the F-27. However, the building time
for our latest mast has been halved, so we are getting more on track with these. But still one behind
due to having to replace the original test mast that broke (details July 16th below). However, the
replacement mast has now been made and shipped inside a large diameter PVC drainage tube
Shipping masts on their own can be a major problem, as damage is common, but having the mast
inside a relatively strong tube like this seems to work well, and mast arrived undamaged.
October 14th, 2014
The production F-22 is taking time to develop, but many of the original plan built F-22s are
already sailing in numerous areas around the world - this is Thierry Hemard's F-22 sailing in France
Meanwhile, the production F-22 interior is nearing completion, and the above photo shows the now
connected galley sink in its storage position. It also works here, with tap and drain being fully functional,
while the full cabin settee also remains usable.
And just 10 seconds later, it can be in its 'normal use' position, with tap and drain fully operational.
Sink drains overboard and there is no need to connect or disconnect anything for it to be moved.
Meanwhile, in Canada, yet another plan built F-22 is happily sailing
This one is Jim and Franca Allen's Melvest built F-22, and sailing in Vancouver.
October 7th, 2014
Testing in Australia continues under the able hand of Peter Hackett. Photos by Paul Steinhardt
New cushions just fitted for the first time
Port side aft, stove being stored behind cushion back
Starboard side aft, galley sink also being stored behind cushion back, where it can still be used
Port seatback removed to show the stove storage area.
Starboard seatback removed with galley sink unit now visible.
Sink now fully deployed and ready for use. Tap is still to be installed.
Stove ready for use, but it is a bit close to cabin side and roof. A heat shield (may be an option) will
take care of this, but stove can also be moved out away from side as shown below.
Stove fully deployed ready for use.
Another view of galley sink unit in the extended position. Quite a bit of counter area for a small boat,
but better still, it can all be packed away so that the full length of cabin settees remains available.
September 20, 2014
While we are working hard at the factory, Peter Hackett continues working hard in his office on refining all the
cruising aspects. F-22 #1 BOOM! is shown anchored at Moreton Island - nice one Peter! A good trip over too:
Meanwhile, back at our version of paradise, (called a factory) we have just fitted the bare foam for interior
cushions. Width of that forward bunk at aft end is 1.4m (4' 7") while max width of area between Forward
Beam Bulkhead (just above cushion) is 1.36m (4' 5"). Cabin floor has yet to be painted, so it is looking a
bit unfinished at this stage.
The foam blanks are now at upholsterer being covered. There will be several fabric options but this can be
a problem, as only a limited range can be offered. The color/pattern may also not exactly match samples
seen, if such samples are not large enough, or right in front of one. So besides fully covered cushions we
will also be offering the bare uncovered foam blanks, so that cushions can be covered locally by owner
after boat arrives to ensure they are exactly what is wanted.
Looking aft showing the footwell for quarter berth. There is more than enough room for legs and feet.
Stove unit is behind cushion, which is removable so that stove can be used as detailed in the earlier
posting just below.
September 6th, 2014
Factory view as of September 6th, 2014. Boats have been rearranged to give more room, as a log jam
has been developing while we work on finalizing the interior and galley molds. The first aluminum
F-22 mast can also be seen at top left.
The basic galley layout has now been established, with the basic molds made. Galley has been
designed so that there is very little intrusion into the boat, and the stove setup can be seen below:
Stove area as it looks when not in use - stove being there but under a cover. Cover itself will normally
be hidden by the seatback (not shown), of which the aft section is easily removable. Cover top has a
recess, and can still be used as counter/storage area in this configuration. The considerable deep
storage area behind the seatback just in front is also apparent.
Stove cover has now been lifted out and clipped onto seatback giving extra counter space. This unit
is very strong once in place and in fact it is probably strong enough to step on. Stove could be used
in the position shown, but a metal heat shield would be advisable on cabin side (as was used on the
Stove has now been slid out into the built in recess on top of the 'clip on' which keeps it securely in
place - no gimbals are needed on a level sailing trimaran. The area behind can now become extra
counter space for pots or pans etc.
Cooking finished, and stove stored away again. Thus for most of the time, when cooking is not being
done, the full cabin and settees are available for seating or reclining. The quarter berth footwells are
not blocked off by any sliding stove unit, so they remain usable for either sleeping or storage.
A similar 'clip on' unit will be used for a galley sink on the other side, or vise versa, and this can also
be stored away when not in use. Thus the F-22 will have the benefit of a very good galley area, but
while still retaining full length F-28 size settees plus quarter berth storage areas. The first settee
cushions are in the process of being made, and photos will be available soon.
Flexibility and the maximum use of space is very important in a small boat, and the configuration
shown above will make the F-22 a very practical pocket cruiser. The same setup will be used on the
smaller cuddy cabin version, which means it can also have a very effective and usable galley area.
We have also been fitting out the first aluminum mast for base F-22s, and photo shows how our
carbon foot is fitted on, complete with halyard clutches, which allow halyards to cleat on mast and
be led directly to winches. Carbon foot then matches up with our exclusive all carbon deck step.
August 12, 2014:
Peter Hackett's BOOM! did very well in its first Race series, winning the QCYC Winter Series in
Brisbane overall, and Peter writes:
Had a great weekend of sailing. It was again light and the windward leewards really suited our boat and style of
sailing so we started the day on a great note with another line honours and then a third and second over the line I
think, with the overall PCF win for the series. Luckily I was able to drop the big points day with the blown mast.
Awesome series result for a great crew including both daughters, a cousin, and some mates who had to share
the new boat's delights with me. We collected a truckload of data during the series, and have many little jobs
now to get the racing kit really sorted before OMR measurement. The internal fitout continues with some
serious cruising coming up as well.
One of the other competitors - BOSS RACING - a serious racing cat with few creature comforts
BOOM! at the dock after the Series win, and now getting ready for some cruising
The other Brisbane boat is (No. 3) is being assembled by Ron and Ken Godwin, Ken in the photo
Meanwhile back at the factory. No. 2 will be our new factory boat, and is in the foreground waiting to be finished
ready for when the weather warms up here. Basically just needs a mast to go sailing. No. 4 is at top left of above
photo, and almost finished whereupon it will be heading for the UK.
Main holdup at present are interior/galley molds which I finally got around to doing a couple of weeks ago. Been in
the hard basket for a while, as in this size boat the galley has to be super efficient, and it needed plenty of thought.
With molds, there is only one chance to get it right. After researching all the options I finally got in the boat a couple
of weeks ago, worked it all out over one weekend, and am very pleased with the result. Very little intrusion, very
efficient, and not clunky or taking up too much room, as many galleys in this size boat can. The necessary molds are
now being made, so should have the first actual interior in place the week after next.
In the meantime we do have a bit of a log jam in the factory with No. 5 being joined up in center of photo above, and
its deck just behind (obscured by No. 2). The deck should be on next week, and it is heading to Switzerland once
finished. No. 6 deck can just be seen at lower right, ready to come out of mold, while its hull can just be seen above
this (behind yellow crane), where basic interior is being formed now that the first offset centerboard case has been
fitted (photo below).
Either a daggerboard or a centerboard is available - it makes the build a little more complicated, but not
overly so, but having the kick back option for shallow waters is well worth it.
If you are wondering why we let boat No. 1 go to Brisbane, these photos say it all
July 16th, 2014
Beginning to move up
Our Australian agent Peter Hackett knew the mast was a high risk, and probably got tired of me warning him about it, but it was a mast destined to meet a sticky end. A replacement mast was being planned, but we were hoping not to send it until next year. However, 'BOOM!' was sailing again a week later with a new mast (from #3) and did very well in the most recent weekend racing, winning Saturday's race.
The actual production masts are stronger, and while the cause of this failure is still being investigated, it was most likely just too light. Similarly I also broke the first mast on my original Trailertri 680 many years ago, in one of the first races, it's mast also being lighter than was wise. However, I have always preferred a light mast on a trailerable, as one has to lift them around, and unless one pushes the envelope in such things one never finds out what the lower limit is, or where any weak area may be. The F-27 prototype also had a very light slender mast, even a tapered masthead, but while it seemed to stand up fine for me, I was not game to put it on the production version, as it was bendy and took some looking after.
This first F-22 mast had in fact stood up for 8 months, and the extra lightness is certainly nice to have, so the mast on our next factory boat will be similar again, just so we can continue to explore the lower limit and find any weak areas. It may even be #1 mast again, as it is repairable, and we can then try and break it all over again - just part of normal testing.
Fortunately, there are also the good days, with an F-32SRC doing very well in the recent JP Morgan Asset Management 'Round the Island' Race, as did an F-32RX and F-27s, and details are now at
Our next factory test boat on the left, with hull #4 (UK bound) on the right being fitted out
Hull #6 (for USA) being laid up, with Kevlar reinforcement in keel visible
Hull #6 resin infused
Deck #5 (for Switzerland) ready to be demolded
Our first centerboard case for #6, and almost ready to be fitted. Should be the best centerboard case yet.
Latest factory view (taken July 19)
Deck no. 5 now out of mold and looking perfect
Mold being prepared for Deck No. 6 which will be made next week
June 14th, 2014
With the first F-22 delivered now sailing, and winning races in Australia (June 8 Update below), it is time to refocus on production:
Our next factory boat is in the final stages of assembly, center right, with hull No. 4 waiting for its deck
just behind. This is ready to fit, but is first being used to make a deck drilling jig/splash (center left) which
will be used to trim and drill all fitting holes in future decks, cutting hours out of assembly time.
Drilling jig/splash now made, and No. 4 deck ready to fit, with glue being applied to hull join flanges
Just about there - lowering deck onto hull
On and clamped.
Meanwhile Hull No. 5 is being removed from the mold
And all ready to go
June 8th. 2014
Peter Hackett's F-22 BOOM! now sailing in Moreton Bay, Brisbane.
Still some tuning to go, but starting to get it right
and good enough to enter it's first race on Sunday June 1st. Peter writes:
Great day overall on the water although 3-5 knots is not a full spectrum. Port tack favoured start and we got a blinder.
Big monos included an Inglis 11.6 Dream, with a 10 minutes start ahead of us, and we caught and passed all of them.
In our fleet, Boss Racing, a stripped out 11.4 meter cat, Turning Point, the Grainger hulls only rocket, and Frequent Flyer,
a big rig Prescott Firefly were not far behind us at Fisheries beacon after a short windward. Midnight Rain, a plan built
F-22 I tuned up (silly me) got a good shift and went around Fisheries first, and then us. A great day for the F-22 brigade.
The tight kite leg to Otter Rock was not working so unfurled the screacher, peeled the kite down, and you could shut the
door from then on. That is one powerful combination of sails in light winds and we sailed under the lee of everything,
getting to Otter ahead of fleet easily. Gybed around Otter Rock and left screacher up all the way to finish line 20 minutes
ahead of Boss Racing, then the other cats and monos. We won line honours, and also on handicap,
A happy Peter at the finish line - you can just see the rest of the fleet in the distance.
However, light winds can be a lottery, plus the F-22 is only a small roomy cruiser, and never designed to be a line honors
machine, so, while a 'double is nice first time up, the F-22 is really more a middle of the pack boat. Or maybe we can soon
say the F-22R at least belongs in the top half of the pack.
May 24th, 2014
Peter Hackett's newly arrived F-22 on its trailer at Cabbage Tree Creek, Brisbane
Happy owner checking how light mast is soon after arrival
and first time sailing on Moreton Bay, the original home of Trailertris.
Meanwhile Ron Godwin's F-22 is due to arrive in Brisbane tomorrow
May 10th, 2014
Second out the gate is Ron and Ken Godwin's F-22R Stage 2 kit, also heading for a warmer
tropical climate in Brisbane.
Shipping cradle is on castors, which makes it easy to roll in
It is tight. but it will fit....
Mast ready to be packed
All done. This is a stage 2 kit, and will be fitted out by owner.
Container sealed and being loaded on truck
Heading out the gate to Brisbane.
May 1st, 2014
First one out the gate is Peter Hackett's F-22R, as shown in the photos below, heading for warmer tropical
climes in Brisbane (and just in time too - it's getting cold here).
First we tried the fit while on the full trailer, plus it is easier to roll the boat in
No problem there - at least 10mm to spare each side
Current Australian import permit requirements, meant this first boat could only go on a shipping cradle, which is
normally the trailer bed anyway, so wheels and axles were now removed. The shipping cradle can be easily
converted into a trailer after arrival by adding Australian approved running gear. However, the import permit
will be obtained in time for the next Australian boat, which will allow full trailers to be shipped.
Floats and beams now packed
The mast now also added. Hard to believe there is room for two boats in here, but it is possible. However,
to speed things up, it had been decided to send our #1 boat instead of #2, but this already had the beams
permanently joined to the floats, which does take up more room. Thus we could not manage to fit two
this time - only 20mm or so in it, but it was enough to be a problem.
Door now closed. We are going to miss #1, but the weather is getting very cold for sailing in New Zealand,
plus what testing remains can continue in Brisbane in the experienced and capable hands of our Australian
dealer Peter Hackett, well known for sailing boats hard. Meanwhile we can finish off #2 to be our boat for
About to be loaded onto truck
and on its way to Australia.
Meanwhile, the container for Boat number 3 has been delivered, and is now being packed for
shipment next week, also to Australia:
At least the weather is a bit better
The basic shipping cradle
With No 3 (Stage 2 Kit boat) now in place, and ready for loading
Aft interior view (Stage 2)
Forward interior view.
The best options for shipping F-22s are now being explored and developed, as our first boats will soon
be heading for Australia.
The above shows one of several configurations being looked at for two boats in a standard 40' container, and
below is the best way for just one.
Two boats at a time can halve shipping cost, but more careful packing and unpacking is required, along with extra
cradles to support floats in their shipping positions. Both boats will also have to be completely disassembled (with
beams disconnected from floats), which takes more time, so savings will be more like 40%. One also has to have
another buyer nearby, or delivery can be slower in the early stages of production while waiting for a shipping buddy.
One boat at a time will cost more to ship, but boat can be quickly packed, and then easily removed from the container
to be on its way very quickly. It may even be possible to do this in the shippers receiving yard, rather than having the
container delivered to an assembly area and then picked up (which is an extra cost).
The first container arriving at our factory, and about to be unloaded. These side lifting trucks
were developed in New Zealand and are very common here. Avoids any need for a crane.
Two Boat Arrival Procedure will be to pull the front boat and floats out, using an SUV or similar, the
boat simply sliding out on its cradle or trailer frame. The second boat can then follow, also on its cradle.
All the various parts can be manhandled if need be, so there should be no need for a crane. However,
assembly will take a while, as the beams and folding system first need to be fitted to the main hull (as
per the detailed step by step instructions supplied), and then the floats are bolted to the beams. All of
this could take from around 4 - 8 hours. Then the mast can be loaded on top and one is ready to go.
One Boat Arrival Procedure is simpler and quicker, the two float and beam assemblies first being carried
or slid out of the container, and then the main hull follows on either a cradle or its trailer. Beam and float
assemblies are then attached to main hull, and this whole procedure should only take 1 - 2 hours.
Note that the above times are based on how long it takes us, but a first time owner/assembler will probably
take longer, even with the supplied assembly instructions. It may also not always be practical to ship two
boats in one container, depending on destination country, due to two different owners. This may require
a 'split entry' (which can be more difficult and expensive) but we will be looking at ways around this.
The trailer may also have to be locally made until our trailer can be approved in other countries, as every
country can be different in this regard. Thus some legwork may be required by initial owners or distributors
as they become active. Two fully assembled trailers will also not fit in one container - one is easy but the
other has to be partly disassembled.
Almost on the ground. The same type of truck will come to pick up the container once loaded.
The simplest and possibly easiest trailer option at this time for other countries would be to purchase a locally
made trailer (setup plans being available) and this can be registered and waiting for the boat on arrival. Or the
boat and shipping cradle can be simply placed on a flat bed car trailer for immediate transport. One can then
build up a trailer from our plans using the fiberglass shipping cradle (trailer bed) and a supplied (kit) or local
aluminum structural members, plus a local axle and running gear.
It is early days for all these shipping aspects, and there is still quite a bit of work to be done. Farrier Marine is
not a multinational conglomerate with established outlets in every country so it will take a while to have every
aspect covered in all major areas. But we do have the best boat, and most things should be resolved and clearer
in the next few months.
Meanwhile, back in the factory, we have also been working on the first head area in boat #3:
Providing a workable head area (with some privacy) in a boat of this size is always difficult, but the
system now being developed looks promising, Porta Potti 145 being visible under forward bunk.
Forward section of starboard settee can then lift up as shown, to form an aft wall for the head area.
Forward bunk section now lifted clear, allowing access to the head. A curtain is to be fitted under the
deck besides the daggerboard case and this will pull aft and around to meet the vertical panel, closing
off the head area. If more privacy is needed during day sailing then the best other solution is to simply
close up the cabin. A head under a bunk is also not the best solution for overnighting, but in this case it,
or a second Porta Potti (kept under the cockpit), can be moved outside into the cockpit.
One of the last jobs to be done before serious production can begin is to have the Builder's Plate
made and this is then attached to every boat. The F-22's plate is shown, and this gives the model
and HIN (Hull Identification Number) plus the recommended loading and powering details.
March 25, 2014
Hull #4 lifted out of mold, and being lowered onto a trailer - once complete this will be heading for England
Deck #5 now made - this will be heading to Switzerland
Hull #5 just gelcoated, and it will be fully laminated this week.
March 9, 2014
Our first delivery almost there - No. 3 boat having daggerboard fit checked. Will soon be in a
container and on the way to Australia along with our first Australian demo boat for agent
Peter Hackett. Just the mast to finish.
Deck No. 4 is now also made - went like clockwork.
More photos were needed to finalize the F-22 Specification and Price Lists (coming soon), and the boat was rigged and launched yesterday for this purpose. Some good photos were obtained of the 'on the water' rigging process and retrieving onto trailer as follows:
Just after arrival, untied and ready to launch
Unfolded and at the dock, just a few minutes later.
Rolling the mast back - spreaders just roll straight over the aft mast support rollers
Attaching mast to carbon step - it just slots on
Fitting mast raising pole
.....and ready to raise
Starting to lift, and there is always some effort required at this stage for mast to initially lift off the aft
support. A good tip is to put some tension on the line, and then give the mast a little heave up and it
will usually just jump off the support. From there on it is easy.
Half way up - getting easy now
...and almost there. Mast ball socket automatically aligns with step ball.
The onboard mast raising block.
Want to see how fast the mast can come down?
Mast lowered, and boat folded again ready for trailer
Just about on - the well carpeted fiberglass bed makes it just about impossible to damage the boat
while retrieving. This is in fact the first time ever that I have not scratched the main hull bow by
now, on some part of the trailer.
and winching the last bit.
All done, just a wash down, and ready for the road. I'm starting to like this 'rigging on the water'.
February 12th, 2014
February 11th was our first truly glitch free sail, with only a few minor improvements left to do, while we
also tested mast raising on the water. This is an important option, as while the wing mast is relatively small,
there is definitely more windage when at the ramp during strong winds, especially with the taller R mast. The
F-22R is thus a little harder to hold than I like, and this was an aspect that needed to be improved, particularly
when using our local ramp. This is rather exposed with frequent strong winds, plus the basic facilities are just
not very user friendly. The shorter F-22 mast should be fine however.
Handling at the ramp with mast up in strong winds was also now the only remaining thing that would not
be easy to do single handed on the F-22R, and the simple solution is to just have the mast down when at
the ramp. Thus it was decided to set up 'on the water' raising and lowering as a standard feature. This has
been done before as an option, and many prefer it that way, but it was never fully developed other than
as a method to get under a low bridge. Thus a dedicated bow block was setup along with a raising line
that goes back to a winch.
The raising block can be seen, attached to the bow web on each side using a Dyneema line with spliced
loops at each forward end. Very simple and quick to setup, and having the block further aft (as shown)
means the raising line does not rub on the deck. Mast is then easy to winch up or lower using a cabin
top winch, and, based on our first try, it looks like this system will be as fast or even faster than doing
it all on the trailer. One just arrives at the ramp, unties the boat (5 minutes), launches, and then motors
away, raising the mast as one goes. The mast is well stabilized by the raising wires, so there is no
drama even in a small chop, and it will be easy to do single handed.
A bit of action sailing from our previous sail (where we found quite a few little glitches - now all
resolved!). We were doing over 14 knots under just main and jib when photo was taken
Looking up the mast
At the ramp, folded with mast down, and ready for the trailer. The F-22R is very easy to handle like this.
In other news, now that the boat is finalized, a completely new web based Features and Options list has
been made up, while the Price List is now being updated and reorganized to allow an F-22 to be ordered
online. All the new and finalized features and options will be covered, and all should be ready for release
over the next week.
January 25th, 2014
Just one side settee could be used for instance, with the other removed and a long dining table and galley
fitted down that side. The whole interior could be easily pulled out and redone in a different format with
many different modules. The back rest can be fixed, or formed by a padded and removable carbon tube
(as at right), with netting down to the seat back for lightweight storage while keeping a more open feel. Or,
both settee units can be glued in place with permanent and solid back rests, as was used in all past boats.
Centerboard case will be on the port side, making the port settee fixed, but starboard settee will still be
Looking aft, with large foot wells visible for the long 6' 10"(2.1m) settee side/quarter berths. The
Having a separate toilet in a boat of this size is very difficult, and, when overnighting, many just use a
Enough is enough! More earthquake repairs, with our front yard being dug up for resurfacing. It
was a great day for sailing too, with some more testing needed, but we could not get the boat out as
all the concrete in the foreground was also dug up. However, it should all be over within a week.
January 18th, 2014
Factory view as of today. Boats #2 and #3 are now full assembled with floats, while the trailer for #2
is nearing completion. Prototype (#1 on trailer at left) is undergoing some improvements in the wing
net area and is about to have its wheels changed as part of the development process. The new wheels
and tires will lower the trailering height by another 25mm (1") plus have a much higher load carrying
capacity to more than cover any overloaded boats.
The new trailer bed is gray, as I initially did not like the first white trailer bed, but now I think I prefer the
white. Decisions, decisions..... Tires on this are of a higher profile, which should suit Australian roads
better (where this trailer is going) and journeys are likely to be very long. Both tire options will be
available in the final price list (which is being redone now).
This is the top of the line trailer version, with stainless steel override disk brakes, polished alloy wheels,
alloy winch (still to be fitted) and alloy jockey wheel. However, there will also be a more economical
version of the trailer with galvanized steel wheels, jockey wheel and winch, but still with alloy frame,
composite bed and winch post, plus all stainless fasteners.
January 11th, 2014
Everything still feels like a snail's pace however, even to me, but to get a high production level one has to be patient, develop every aspect properly, in minute detail, and then fully document so as to ensure it is easily buildable and repeatable. We are not just copying an old design or using old technology, but developing something truly new in every aspect - just like the original F-27 in fact.
Thus I have been in this situation before, with the building of #2 and #3 F-27s being even slower, and even more frustrating as I recall, as it looked like we would never get them done. But only a few years later we were producing 2 per week like clockwork, with eventually 450 F-27s out there, followed by hundreds of F-28s and F-31s. Helps make it less painful this time, as I know it will get better.
I'm also currently doing a major revision of the Specification and Price Lists, with much more detail and photos being included of all the standard features and options, as we have now reached a position where the final format of the boat can be set, along with what will be available to enhance it. These will be finished later this month and will then be emailed out to all depositors, and everyone on the interested list. The next orders in line can then be finalized and the boats put into the manufacturing process.
January 1st, 2014
was an F-22 in the front yard, and there it was, with room to spare!
Meanwhile, at the factory, things have been fairly slow and still a little frustrating, with the last few
aspects being resolved and finalized, which can sometimes take some time. One of these was the
pop-top but this has now turned out to be one of the best setups yet, with the above photo showing
it in the down/closed position
It is a combination sliding and lifting hatch, the above photo showing it slid forward with aft end lifted
slightly (this height is adjustable), giving easy access to cabin, even when mast is down and just above.
Aft end can next be lifted up to full height, to fully open up cabin area (still bare and unfinished).
The side view - note our fresh newly painted walls compared to the old dirty ones further below!
Forward end is now lifted up to give standing headroom (1.88m or 6' 2") at the aft end of cabin. This
height can be increased if more headroom is needed, and pop-top can also be made weatherproof when
up by using the optional pop-top cover. Interior is still to be completed, and currently waiting on the
side settees to be made. However, the molds for these have just been finished, so not long now.
Side view fully up. This is easily the most solid and easy to operate pop-top ever to be on an
F-boat. Also visible is the starboard side mast raising anchor, a closer view below.
This has been designed specifically to match the mast, raising pole, and carbon fibre step. It is an
option, as mast can be raised without it, but this makes it the whole procedure foolproof and easy to
do single-handed. It is a major improvement from my previous production designs which used fold
down 'loops' on the deck, which also worked well. However, such 'deck clutter' is being eliminated
wherever possible on the F-22, to keep decks clean and simple. These side anchors just plug and pin
in place in less that 20 seconds, are much stronger, plus they ensure the mast foot comes down exactly
onto the pivot ball as it nears being fully raised.
No 2 trailer now being assembled. Frame has been further improved and this one will also have
stainless steel disk brakes (will be an option)
Meanwhile, while out on the water we have now found that it is possible to roller furl the boomless
main, after it has been reefed. This eliminates all those annoying sail ties, and tidies the whole thing
up very nicely.
The main holdup for deliveries continues to be the mast, but #2 mast is getting close to being finished,
while #3 has been started. Otherwise I'm almost ready to sign off on all aspects as being ready, after
which the finalized parts not yet in stock can begin to be made or ordered in bulk and serious
production can finally begin.
November 24th, 2013
The prototype F-22 is now sailing (as per photos below). But it's not all sailing, as there's still much work to be done at the factory behind the scenes to ensure the first boats delivered are as good as they can be:
Boats #2 and #3 now just about complete with windows on, and only final detailing to go.
The main hold up now is the masts, which are still in progress (bottom left) with quite a number of
improvements over the prototype mast taking a while to implement. The above photos were taken
on November 15, but our factory is looking very chaotic right now, with everything pulled away from
the walls to allow earthquake repairs to be done. Not something we had been looking forward to, as
there has been consider disruption.
Some of the repaired cracks in the concrete walls, patched on the left, and being filled with epoxy on the
right. It is an interesting process, and there are now a surprising number of such 'stitched up' buildings all
over Christchurch. But at least they are stronger than original, once work has been completed, plus we will
end up with newly painted walls, which will help make the disruption worth it.
But work also carries on - one centerboard side mold plug shown above, with molds now being made.
The F-22 will be the only full production F-boat available with a centerboard option.
We have also been developing and refining the reefing system for the boomless main:
First reef shown above.
Second reef now in place. System being setup is a sort of simplified slab reefing system, but not as smooth
or quick as a true roller furling boom setup yet, as sail ties (shown above and below) are still required.
The next step (if possible) will be to roller furl the lower portion of the sail once it is reefed, and that is
now being developed/tested. This will eliminate any need for sail ties and make the whole process the
easiest, simplest, and quickest. The best of both systems in fact. Bolt rope is standard but mast will also be
able to take slides, so these will be optional. Slides can make it easier to raise or lower main, but they have
to be fed in by hand which makes setup much slower. However slide mainsails are easier to reef downwind.
The big advantage of roller furling is that mainsail is always kept tidy and under full control. There are no
time consuming lazy jacks to set up, or to tangle, nor are they flapping around in the breeze. Just makes
rigging faster, with sailing being simpler and more enjoyable.
The old way:
Mainsail on the prototype 19' Tramp was just dropped down onto the boom, but it could also go all
over the deck making it very hard to handle (not to mention untidy), particularly if single handed.
The Tramp's super large cockpit helped to contain it, but I would not go any larger with such a
main without an efficient and easy way of dropping it single-handed, as will be on the F-22.
November 9th, 2013
Setting up, with a number of new developments in place, including a quicker to setup mast raising
system (30 seconds versus 3 minutes), plus pulpit and telescopic bow pole are now fitted.
Launched again - the fiberglass and aluminum trailer is proving to be a dream to work off.
Unfolded and ready to go, boomless main neatly roller furled. This is getting better and better,
and it now has the variable stiffness bottom batten fitted.
Boomless main traveler system is simple and working well
The first sailing photos away from the boat - taken by Matt Vance on his phone while out sailing
on the harbour in an old classic keeler, and then emailed to me. Thanks Matt!
We should have hung around a bit closer.
The new pulpit (no bolts) - is set wide and open at front to allow furled screacher to drop inside to where
it can be securely held. It also gives a much wider working area forward (feels very safe), with more
room for the jib to set properly. A fore and aft cross bar may become optional at quarter height, which
means the lower area can also be netted in if wished. Sides are quickly removable by pulling a couple
of pins, so racers can reduce windage and weight if desired.
The boomless main downwind, and working well. A common concern with boomless mains is that
they can be too full downwind, but this is easily prevented by a simple outhaul/downhaul to the float,
as shown. These are also commonly used to hold down booms, boom vangs not being possible with
a rotating mast. However, we also have a variable stiffness batten under development and it seems to
work well without the need for the downhaul. Batten will only curve so far before it gets very stiff, so
any need for such a downhaul may be eliminated. Some further refinements have now been done,
and we will know more next time.
Factory staff doubling as crew, Arthur Inns at left, Craig Johnstone at right (who always seems to have his
thumb up lately), while Steven Willard can be seen in the below videos. It is always important for factory
workers to get out on the boat 'hands on' as they then see how things should work, and can build a
better boat as a result.
Slow as molasses unfortunately, with so many little details still to finalize, or parts to source, and home builders will know what I mean. There are also a couple of interior molds (seats) still to make, pop-top/main hatch to be finalized, but almost there and the list of jobs remaining to do is getting smaller and smaller. The next two boats are now fully joined up, and having windows put on.
However, both masts are still to be made (one about 50% done) so a little longer yet. The prototype mast was built to a minimal structural standard, so a failure will not be a surprise (all part of testing). However, it got a good workout in the most recent sail, with reasonable wind and a good chop, and it stayed up fine. However, there are still some areas that needed refinement and these have now been redesigned and incorporated in the two new masts.
The final boat format and setup are now almost finalized, and this means that a much more comprehensive Price List can be made up, showing exactly what comes in each stage, plus all the optional 'add ons' can start to be listed in detail and priced. When the initial Price and Specification lists were made up there were still many unknowns, and thus they were a little vague and incomplete in several areas. However, we can now start to firm things up, and a more detailed and up to date Price List should be on its way to all buyers soon.
October 6th, 2013
are now nearing completion, Ron Godwin's #3 in the middle, Peter Hackett's #2 at front.
Centerboard case molds are also now being made and MDF plugs can be seen at middle left
Still quite a few little details to finalize, including bow pole (initial configuration can be seen on #1), the
pulpit, forward mast support (final version) and pop-top, plus both masts also have to be made. But the
boats are almost there. Still no definite delivery dates available for these or subsequent boats, as it remains
very difficult to estimate development times for the various new features remaining, and thus it is still a
case of they will be ready when they are ready. But definitely not long now.
It would be easy to just cut and run right now, and use any old method to get boats out the door, but another
few weeks or so is not going to make much difference after what has been a very long development time. In
comparison, it took us another year to deliver F-27 #2 after #1 had been launched, but at that time we still had
beam, float and many interior molds to make, whereas these are already done for the F-22. So it is now only
a matter of weeks rather than months before the above boats will be in a container and heading for Australia.
Meanwhile, #1 SILVER FOX has been neglected a little, as the focus has been on getting production under
way, but it will be ready to go sailing again this coming week, with a further improved mast raising system
(easier and quicker), plus the reefing system and bow pole will be setup and fitted, while custom 'quick fit'
trailer lights are also now ready to go.
September 14th, 2013
Ready to launch, main already on and ready to go from its furled state.
Now launched and at the ramp
Stern view - note how high it is floating
Unfolded - takes about a minute.
Cockpit view with boomless traveler angled forward just the right amount. The tiller is an alloy tube with
a 'soft touch' neoprene sleeve on the end. Tiller slides into a short carbon tiller (white) and can just pull
out, leaving the carbon tiller still usable behind traveler. This gives up to 60° turn per side when motoring
in confined areas, which is considerably more than required. Similarly, more than enough lock with the
full tiller when sailing.
View forward from cockpit - the removal of the permanent coamings have really opened this up, making
it easy to get to wing nets and cross from side to side. The optional 'plug in' backrests (coming) will then
give full height back rests that actually work well (comfortable), but only when needed.
Designer at helm - the first hour was a glassy calm, but boat still kept moving, doing up to 2 knots
in these conditions, when everyone else was motoring. Good helm control was always there, with
the boat never stalling out.
Starting to get a little wind, and mast step area looking forward is shown. Note how all lines come from
mast step area, leaving cabin roof clean and uncluttered. Jib furler lines can still be seen but these will
soon be moved outboard and out of sight along hull.
Lyttelton Heads in sight and we just made it there before having to turn back. No sailing shots
away from the boat yet, as we are still in a checking and testing mode, so no time for posing.
However, crew member and key Farrier Marine employee Alister Wright got some video
footage just as the wind started to come in:
Just a phone video, but better than nothing at all. Winds were no more than 5 or 6 knots at best, but
we did manage to get over 7 knots with just main and jib. Good professional grade photos and
videos will be coming soon, but only after we have the boat thoroughly checked out and all
systems working perfectly.
Main being roller furled. It is then just a matter of pulling a pin on the front handle to release the neatly
rolled main (light with no boom) whereupon it is easily stowed below. No awkward main all over the
deck, no need to fold it, and no lazy jacks to mess with.
The finished trailer with the just fitted composite winch post waiting for the boat to return. Very user
friendly with wide non-skid walking areas forward and storage under the winch
Approaching the trailer
Almost on - it will be hard to sustain damage here, as is common, the trailer being so boat and user friendly.
Just a few minor improvements or refinements now left to do, but our priority has now become to get the
next two boats delivered. Thus everyone will be concentrating on these for the next few weeks, while I
also have a trade show to attend. So good sailing photos will have to wait until October whereupon normal
service will resume.....
September 7th, 2013
With the weather now more suitable, it was time for the second try at launching, mast being raised. Probably
the tenth time we have raised the mast now, so it is becoming very routine and trouble free, and easy to
The F-22R SILVER FOX is finally in the water, and floating very high. The well padded fiberglass
trailer bed can be seen, and it is going to be very hard to damage boat on this, with no metal parts to hit.
Note also how high the tilted outboard is above the water. Being too low to where prop can drag on
wave tops has been a common problem.
Now at the dock. After over 12 years of thinking about it, 6 years in development, the all new
production F-22 is finally launched and ready to go.
View from the other side - note the neatly roller furled boomless main ready to go. No bow pole as yet
(composite mount/pole end mold still being made) but it should be ready next week.
Now sailing, where it handled beautifully, with everything working as expected. The bay ahead is Purau
where my original 30 foot tri was moored way back in 1970, before I sailed it to Auckland. So almost
a home coming.
Main hull bow out of the water as is a common characteristic with all F-boats. Not much wind but
we were easily able to average around 5 or 6 knots, with a few 8 knot bursts.
The very clean wake. Helm was very light, and response was excellent.
Mainsail and the rotating carbon wingmast worked very well.
The molded wingnet rail creates an excellent and secure seating area along the float, with ample hand
holds due to the cutouts along the edge. Far more secure than an aluminum extrusion on the deck
The view aft with Farrier Marine staff John McCormack, Arthur Inns, and Craig Johnston enjoying
their first sail - our late winter weather was a little cold, but there were big smiles all round. The absence
of cockpit coamings really made access forward or out to the wingnets very easy, with nothing to step or
trip over. I was not sure how this would work out but I am now a convert. Add on coamings or 'plug in'
seatbacks will however be an option for those who still prefer them.
Mainsail foot shape was not good due to a broken batten (details below), so foot could not be tensioned
properly. However, the boomless main still worked fine, and not having to deal with an outhaul, or cope
with a heavy boom is a luxury. A broken boom can also end any sailing whereas the broken batten was
just a nuisance, and we were able to keep sailing without any problems other than a few wrinkles (on the
sail - not the skipper).
Back at the dock and folded up ready for the trailer. Folded perfectly as usual, but unlike earlier designs
the side stays will now securely hold the mast up even when folded, and during folding. There is no need
to fit any mast raising wires until one is on the trailer and ready to lower mast. Nothing to forget in other
words. If anything, the stays were a little tight while folded but this will be adjusted on the next boat.
Coming back onto the trailer, with synthetic bow loop about to be connected (no stainless fittings in the
bow). This worked better than expected, and eliminates more troublesome metalwork. Winch post is still
a temporary aluminum one, but this will be replaced by an all composite bow nose piece next week. This
will provide a very safe carpeted landing area for the boat, not to mention a walking area while waiting
for it. It also means we can get rid of the double rollers visible - the metal frame around these being the
only items left that could possibly damage the boat. Ramp was very shallow, but retrieving was still easy.
De-rigging complete and the final wash down. Not many photos yet, and none from 'off the boat' while
sailing. But this first launching was all business, in order to check out all the systems and that everything
worked as it should. Photos were thus a lower priority, but there will be more next time.
Overall a great first sail, and very encouraging. Only a couple of minor problems to rectify, one being the
tiller was a little too close to traveler, and was interfering with traveler control line access, which will be
rectified. Bottom batten also broke at the forward end before we went sailing, due to torque on the batten
end from the main unfurling. This was only because the forward batten pocket cap was too small, meaning
batten forward end had to be tapered off to fit, weakening it too much. We were already aware that this
would be a possible problem, and a new larger batten cap had been ordered, but did not arrive in time.
However, even with a broken batten, the main roller furling still worked easily, and with no boom it was
light enough to easily stow below, whereas on the heavier boomed mains I usually leave them on deck in
a bag, rather than have to manhandle them into the cabin. The ease of the boomless main (so far) is bliss!
September 3rd, 2012
F-22 #1 is now ready to sail, so we headed for the harbour:
All ready to go, having just received the final wash down
At the ramp and getting ready to raise the mast
Mast up, ready to launch, this first time taking only 20 minutes, and it will be quicker again next time.
A great day too, but then the wind changed, blowing directly onto the ramp, and, as explained earlier,
the local ramps in Lyttelton are not the best. There is no breakwater and even a light southerly soon
raises a small chop on the ramp, to where it was too risky to launch in such an onshore breeze and what
are minimal docks. I've launched on much rougher ramps, but not a new boat on a new type of trailer,
with a new motor, so I reluctantly pulled the plug. The most common source of damage with a new boat
is coming back on the trailer, so why take the risk. A southerly front is now coming through, with snow
and sleet forecast, so we may have to wait a couple of days. However, it has been 43 years since I last
sailed my own boat on Lyttelton harbour, so another couple of days will not matter.
Otherwise everything worked great, the boat trailered easily, while mast went up and down like clockwork.All Earlier History And Development Photos Before September, 2013