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If thinking of buying or building any multihull then the designer’s background and experience is very important. Has he built or sailed any of his own designs? Do they actually have a race or sailing record to match the claims? Is the designer readily accessible and responsive?
If considering building yourself, are the plans fully detailed with photos, instructions, and easy to follow three dimensional views with step by step instructions? Do they include extensive Full Size Patterns, and a comprehensive materials list?
If considering a production multihull, is the manufacturer experienced, and do they respond to customer questions or concerns? Do they have skilled, knowledgeable staff, with good technical expertise and quality controls? Do they back their product, and, very importantly, who designed or engineered that product, and is that someone prepared to put their name on it?
There is no university or school that teaches multihull design or construction, nor are there scantling rules, as exist for monohulls. The only teacher has been years of practical building and sailing experience. Only experience will tell the loadings and correct safety factors for the many critical areas of a multihull. A competent engineer may have the skills to design beams that will not break for a given load, but if he doesn’t know what that load is, or in what directions it can act, then even the best engineering skills are of little help.
There are a number of excellent multihull designers and builders, but choose carefully, as this is very important to the safety and security of your family, the ease and cost of construction, and the final resale value.
Multihulls are now one of the fastest growing segments of the sailboat market. They have circumnavigated the globe at record speeds, and are rapidly becoming the family cruising boat of choice as more is learned about their many other advantages. These include level sailing, unmatched stability, deck space, unsinkability, shallow draft, comfort, and just the sheer fun of sailing a fast and responsive cruising boat.
Farrier trimaran and catamaran designs combine all of these advantages, to be the perfect sport cruisers. They are a unique and practical combination of easily handled fun cruisers for families, and exciting performance for racers.
The unique Farrier Folding System™ also provides ‘take-it-anywhere’ trailerability, and the ability to use any marina dock. It has forever eliminated the old problem of what to do with a super wide trimaram
Farrier multihulls are now well proven, having evolved from over 30 years of constant development, hands on building, and sailing. With well over 3000 production and home built versions currently sailing world wide, performance and reliability has been demonstrated beyond doubt.
The basic design philosophy has always been to provide safe, roomy, well engineered multihull cruisers with performance provided by design efficiency and good engineering, not at the expense of accommodation, structure, or safety.
All designs are thus light to medium displacement multihulls, with conservative rigs, while scantlings and safety factors are on the rugged side, for strong, durable, and safe boats. They are also unsinkable, due to construction materials, and NO LEAD or other heavy metals being present.
The roomy interiors have been designed with the cruising sailor in mind, and with heel rarely exceeding 12 degrees, all facilities can be easily used while underway – stoves not even needing gimbals.
On deck, there’s a huge amount of deck space, and this combined with low heel angles make Farrier multihulls one of the safest boats afloat for children. The comfortable wing or bow nets make an ideal spot to relax and sunbathe while the water zips by below.
With no heavy keel needed, Farrier trimarans sit low on the trailer and are light and easy to tow. This will allow you to discover and explore many previously out of reach cruising grounds, or race in exotic venues far from home. Trailering offers significant savings in slip fees and maintenance that can even cover most of the ownership costs.
Rigging and launching can all be done single-handed in around 30 minutes or just 15 minutes with two – no difficult assembly or heavy lifting is required.
Launching is always done folded, using no more space than a conventional boat. Stability afloat is excellent and the floats are normally extended while motoring away.
Marina docking while folded is as easy as any other craft, and the minor problem with long term docking of growth on the folded float sides has now been eliminated by new ‘HydroHoist’ or dock liner systems. However, the high expense and maintenance involved with keeping a boat in the water can be avoided by the ease of trailering.
EASY AND FUN TO SAIL
Took my first sail last weekend in my new (used) 1990 F-27 “Serafin”. My crew consisted of my wife and 9 month old son. Needless to say I did not have a lot of help. Awesome boat!!! It sets up and launches easier than my Tornado cat, is nearly as quick and handles like a fast dingy and the family was dry and comfortable the whole time. Truly a magnificent craft, Ian has really covered all the bases. After 35 years of sailing I feel like a kid again!!! Steve, Kim, Zachary and Sandy Schulz, F-27 Serafin, S. California, USA
All Farrier multihulls are designed as easily handled, roomy and safe family cruisers, that are fun to sail. They also just happen to be fast, which comes as a no cost extra. It’s even possible to tow a waterskier under sail on some models!
Actually these boats sail back wards really well. We were on a charity race with a couple of mono cruisers, we would get ahead and turn back to meet them when my step son asked if the boat would sail backwards – so I pushed out the main, backwinded the genoa and had him steer and we passed the mono cruisers going backwards. Not much wind but it was fun Rod Tharp, F-9A and now building F-32AX, Olympia, WA, USA
The ‘ease of performance’ is most notable, this being the option to go fast effortlessly, while still maintaining comfort and a feeling of security for the crew. Cruising range is greatly increased making many previously out of reach anchorages a reality.
High averages can be effortlessly maintained, and this was well demonstrated by two F-27s averaging an incredible 17.9 and 18.2 knots for the 44 mile course in the 1993 Miami – Key Largo race, while blitzing the fleet. Not everyone wants to go this fast, but it is easier to slow a fast boat down, for ultra-safe effortless cruising, than trying to make a slow boat go fast.
Helm is always light and responsive at any speed, while tacking is dinghy-like. Even continuous 360 degree turns are possible with trimarans, helm hard over, without touching the sails.
The lack of sailing vices makes any Farrier multihull very suitable for shorthanded sailing with just one or two. There is never a need for a large crew just to keep things upright and under control. They are thus a great practical cruising boat for the family, perfect for the idyllic sail, with a visit to that distant secluded beach for lunch, and trailerables can be safely back on the trailer before nightfall, all with minimal effort.
FARRIER FOLDING SYSTEM™
One key to the success of Farrier trimarans is the easy trailerability made possible by the unique Farrier Folding System™.
The Farrier system is the most structurally sound trimaran folding system available, with no hinges in the beams or the critical beam to float join, while corrosion prone wires are never used in structurally critical areas. Overall beam can be varied in seconds, by just one person, anywhere.
After 33 years of use world wide the Farrier System is well proven, the most successful folding system, and used by more trimarans than anything else. So to be safe, be sure to insist on the genuine twin strut ‘Farrier Folding System’™. It is significantly different from all the rest, and the many advantages can be summarized as follows:
Folds for road legal trailering in minutes without any heavy assembly being required.
The twin strut folding system gives absolute control over movement
No need for water to support floats while folding – the twin struts make it easy to fold anywhere
The correct folding strut geometry means folding can be done by one person, anywhere.
Twin struts mean the float will not fall on the ground if folding out of the water on a trailer
Absolutelyno weak hinge points in the actual beams, with the highly stressed beam to float join being solid
Absolutely no sliding parts that can bind or jam
Corrosion prone wires are not used in structurally critical areas where sudden failure could threaten the boat
The structurally critical lower struts are solid Aluminum 6061 T6 bar, with absolutely no butt welds.
Custom made reinforced acetal (plastic) bushes insulate aluminum struts from stainless steel pivot pins
There is no reliance on the rig for structural support should float reverse loading occur
Beams are structurally sound no matter how loaded, including even after a capsize
Proven track record, with 33 years development, six Atlantic crossings and race records/wins world wide.
Now used by over 3000 boats world wide
Ian Farrier first started sailing multihulls virtually by accident, being a twenty year old New Zealand engineering student and monohull sailor, looking for a keelboat to do some offshore cruising.
Nothing suitable was available, but then an unfinished 30’ trimaran was advertised, and was purchased after some research. After two years of hard work and rebuilding, his first multihull was launched in 1969.
It was not a perfect multihull, but it was reasonably fast and forgiving. It was also good enough to sail single-handed from his home town Christchurch to Auckland, surviving two mid-winter ‘roaring-forties’ storms on the way. However, some design limitations were apparent, and confidence was lacking for a long ocean voyage, so he jumped ship to a 38’ keelboat bound for Tonga. The contrast in comfort, handling and safety aspects observed during this trip convinced him that a well designed multihull was the way to go.
In 1972 he arrived in Brisbane, Australia, where the growing popularity of the monohull trailer sailer was noted while crewing on a local trimaran. A trailerable trimaran appeared to have many advantages over trailerable monohulls, so he decided to look at what could be done. The Farrier Folding System™ was then invented, patented, and the prototype Trailertri 18 was built and launched in 1974. It worked beautifully and he then built five more Trailertris of various sizes, while trying out many different configurations. Over this period the folding trailerable trimaran slowly began to establish itself as a practical and exciting option, to eventually become one of the fastest growing segments of sailing.
In 1984 Ian and his family moved to Chula Vista (San Diego), where financial backing had been found to set up Corsair Marine. He then designed the F-27, built the prototype, and developed and established Corsair’s full production system and quality controls. With 100 boats being produced every year, and an excellent reputation established, it was time to concentrate on new designs, so he resigned from Corsair in 1991, and moved to Bellevue (Seattle). Corsair was subsequently licensed to build the F-24, F-28 and F-31 designs, in a productive ongoing relationship, though rocky at times, with varying ownership/management at Corsair.
Ian ended all relationship with Corsair in December 2000, finding himself once again working on his own as Farrier Marine, Inc., and concentrating on new projects via other avenues. In 2017, he sold Farrier to Daedalus International.
Sadly, Ian Farrier passed away suddenly in early December 2017. He is survived by wife Alicia and sons Michael and Steven. The multihull world is reeling from Ian’s loss and we are grateful for the hundreds of kind messages of support we have received. The Farrier brand continues as Ian would have wanted in our Christchurch factory. A small team of F-Boat enthusiasts will work to ensure the F-Boat sails well into the future.