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Kim Alfred's modified F-31 Cheekee Monkee managed to break two beams last year, due to the additional loads generated by custom lifting foils that had been fitted in the floats. A lot of very hard sailing and a couple of collisions may have also been a factor, but such foils can increase the twisting loads on the outer beam ends by up to 400%. Thus it is very important not to fit such lifting foils without first replacing or strengthening beams.

It was decided that all four beams should be replaced, and the new beams were custom designed to be a direct replacement for the stock F-31 beams. The new beams have features from both the latest F-32 and F-33 beams, with internal folding strut mounts (no metal brackets), 2 3/8" (60mm) more water clearance over the old F-31/F-9 beams at outer ends, and 3% less frontal area. They are also four times stronger at outer ends to take the extra loads from Cheekee Monkee's float mounted lifting foils.

The new beams were built by Lonestar Marine in Texas, and even though significantly stronger, the new beams ended up around 21lbs lighter each for an overall weight saving of 85lbs.

Bow view. Open 60 style aerodynamic forward beam fairings were also designed, but time
ran out to incorporate. As it was Cheekee Monkee only got back to the Northwest just one day
prior to the 2005 Swiftsure Race. The fairings may be added later.

Aft beam partly folded, with new shape and internal strut mounts clearly obvious

No more metal brackets - everything is internal - cleaner and lighter

The new F-31 beams on Cheekee Monkee at far left can be compared to the stock F-31s
at right, in the raft up just prior to the 2005 Swiftsure Race, Victoria, Vancouver Island

Side view. CHEEKEE MONKEE went on to win the Swiftsure multihull division overall, in
very rough conditions, beaten over the line only by a Formula 40 racing catamaran.

Some comments from those there:

Several skippers at Swiftsure said, the 30 knots and 6-10 short steep waves were some of the worst conditions experienced in that race. A good test for the new beams on Cheekee which came through with flying colors. Dragonfly a Formula 40 cat, broke their aluminum bowsprit in half going upwind in the waves, so maybe that gives some perspective on the conditions. Most of the F-boats came through with minor if any damage, just lots of green looking crew.

Mike Wright
F-25A Scooter

The more I look back on the race, the more fun I had. We were at Race when it was 45-50 (lighthouse report) at 0230 or so and with no headsail and a reefed main we were at a steady 15 knots! As we turned towards Victoria and had to head up a little, boat speed increased. As the wind dropped to probably something in the 30's, we started putting up more sail (blade jib). We had the spinnaker up until somewhere around Sheringham and had to constantly bear off so with difficulty took it down. Main was already reefed. The waves were really big and we could look back and see them coming. Once down, our boat speed did not change. Hindsight is perfect. We should have had 2 reefs in, but, the boat handled well. I trust it more now than I ever did.

Dr. John Green
F-9AX Sauterelle