A 2003 Farrier design, the original F-33 was a production design that incorporated many new and unique features.

Peter Wesley’s F-33 SHADOWFAX (the first F-33 launched) on the beach in Sydney harbor
…and sailing off the Australian coast

The F-33 began as a ‘one off’ project boat for Seattle’s David Miller, who was looking for a custom built F-9AX to replace his F-9A (a custom built version of the F-31). However, the time was right for something a little larger that could still be trailered, so it was decided to do a completely new design.

The F-33 was a limited volume, premium quality boat, fully trailerable via the Farrier Folding Systemâ„¢, and designed with an ocean going capability in mind. It was only available as a semi production boat – plans alone are not available. However, the new F-32 plans (with F-33 features incorporated) will cater for home builders who prefer to build from scratch, or from a kit.

Two models were available as follows:

F-33 Sport Cruiser The perfect high performance easily trailerable very roomy cruiser,
and available in both aft cabin and aft cockpit versions.

F-33R Sport Racer A very high performance version, with a more basic interior, and
taller carbon mast. Also available in both aft cabin and aft cockpit versions.


The F-33 had epoxy foam core hulls, carbon/glass fiber beams, all extensively vacuum bagged, and finished with a two pack linear polyurethane (LP) finish. The F-33R used more carbon fiber in selected structural areas, for the maximum cost/weight benefit.

Construction was controlled by the same extensive production control system that were originally developed by Ian Farrier for the Farrier F-27, but further enhanced and improved. This includes fully colorized laminate guide sheets, with every laminate color keyed, to ensure nothing is left to chance or omitted. Assembly is then guided by an extensive checklist system, coupled with many full color guide sheets, to ensure everything goes where it should, and is done correctly.

Pete Pattullo’s F-33R sailing in Texas.
Sailing on Sydney harbor

Technical Details

The F-33 features many technical improvements including:

An improved Farrier Folding System with a more integrated structural support system. The beam recesses (notches) in the center hull deck have been eliminated, for a cleaner deck, while also eliminating any interior intrusion. All folding system metal brackets have been replaced by special integrated carbon fiber anchors, the beam anchors now also being internal, reducing windage, weight and complexity. Folding struts are thus set higher, keeping them further away from wave tops.

Beams are of a new shape, being more streamlined to direct any water down and under the boat, while also being slimmer and higher at outer ends for less drag. The inner beam end to main hull connections are now external, for easier setup and maintenance, which also allows shorter beams for a lower trailering height (2″ or 50mm less in fact than the F-9A/F-31), and giving less windage on the road. Trailering beam is 9′ 6″ (2.9m), which is legal in most areas without any significant restrictions.

Brian Haynes’ F-33R in the UK

The F-33 float bow tips are designed to be sacrificial, similar to a car crumple zone, and will absorb any float bow heavy impact, to help prevent more extensive damage that can result from collisions. The float will remain watertight, and still sailable in most collision situations. A new bow is simply glued on to repair.

Metal use is being minimized wherever possible, with all chainplates being carbon fiber, and all rigging will be synthetic.

The retractable bow pole has a new stop system, eliminating any pin wear problems, and enabling the bob stay to be easily tensioned.

Cockpit seating area is higher to give better visibility forward, and more room underneath, but still low enough so that one still has a good sense of security from sitting more in the boat rather than on it.

Daggerboard control lines are now flush, to reduce deck clutter around the mast. This also creates an easily accessible under deck area right at the mast base, and ideal for mast connector plugs, thus keeping them below deck level, drier, and eliminates any risk of damage from being walked on.

An safety access hatch is standard.

Sigi Steimer’s F-33 in Canada

Specifications (may be subject to change)

L.O.A…………………………… 33′ (10.06m)
B.O.A…………………………… 23′ 5″ (7.14m)
L.W.L…………………………… 31′ 4″ (9.55m)
Folded beam…………………….. 9′ 6″ (2.9m)
Approx. bare weight ……………. 2800 – 3700lbs (1270 – 1680kg) depending on model
Load Carrying Capacity ……… 2900lbs to 3300lbs (1320 – 1500kg) depending on model
F-33 rotating mast ……………….44.7′ (13.62m) aluminum or carbon mast
F-33 sail area (main & jib)……… 673sq.ft (62.56sq.m.)
F-33R rotating mast ……………..47.2′ (14.38m) – carbon mast
F-33R sail area………………….717sq.ft (66.65sq.m.)
Stability ………………………….59,000ft.lbs (F-9A/F-31 is 47,000ft.lbs)
Draft (board up)…………………. 1′ 5″ (0.43m)
Draft (board down)……………… 5′ 11″ (1.8m)
Aft Cabin Cockpit length…………5′ (1.52m)
Aft Cockpit length………………..7′ 7″ – 9′ 10″ (2.3 – 3m)
Interior Headroom ……………….6′ 2 to 6′ 6″ (1.88 – 2m) depending on interior layout
All bunks can be a minimum of 6′ 6″ (2m) long or longer if required.
Auxiliary………………………… Outboard or Inboard optional

Aft Cabin Interior Layouts

Aft Cockpit Interior Layouts

“The F-33 is possibly the most exciting new development for Farrier Marine since the original and now classic F-27. I still recall telling early buyers that the F-27 represented the most advanced boat they could buy, and the best value, and was proved correct over time, with many still selling for their original price, or even more. The new F-33 is another leap forward, and once the value of all the new aspects being incorporated in the F-33 are realized, ranging from structural to new easy maintenance features, I believe it will have an even greater impact on the market, and prove to be even better value than the original F-27”.
Ian Farrier

The F-33s of David Miller and Sigi Stiemer’ at Desolation Sound, Canada


At the dock in Mooloolaba Harbor, Queensland, Australia
Aft quarter view – she turned out lighter than expected and is floating high, with transom well clear, even with a diesel inboard
Stern view
Side view at Southport
Force required for folding is about the same as the F-9A/F-31, even though the beams are shorter. Folding
thus remains a one man operation, but more force is required to extend, and this may require two. However, another new feature is a simple plug-in folding handle which will simply extend the beam and make this a true single-handed operation once more. Geometry is set so that folding can be done WITHOUT disconnecting or loosening side stays, which then also support mast throughout the folding process. You can thus safely fold without having to fit mast raising wires if wished.
Folded from the side, with a good view of the wide beam tops which give a very safe walking area.
It is still quite amazing that a boat this size can fold up so easily to go on a trailer. Rigging and setup time for launching should still be around 30 minutes for the experienced, with some new “quick rig” features also being incorporated. As with all Farrier trailerable designs, single-handed rigging and launching will remain possible.
The view forward while sailing
The crew – from left, Julian Griffiths, Malcolm Keals (builders), Peter Wesley (owner), Ian Keals, and designer Ian Farrier.
David Miller’s F-33 fully shrink wrapped for the delivery trip
Shrink wrap removed in Seattle, the boat being almost perfect after 3000 miles


Like the F-27, the F-33 represents a major step forward from all my previous designs, the F-27 introducing such things as the low rocker main hull, molded carbon fiber beams, vertical joined floats, simpler parallel lower folding struts, single bar style upper folding strut, and a simplified molded beam bulkhead system. The vertical joined floats did not last on the F-27 due to difficulties in production, but these problems have now been solved, and the clean vertical joined seamless floats are back with the F-33, along with an improved beam and folding system, and this, plus some other significant innovations are detailed below.


The ‘Farrier Folding System’ is now well proven, with over 2000 boats using it very successfully world wide. However, I felt there was still room for improvement and hence the F-33 beams are more advanced over what has been used before.

‘Pretty’ Open 60 or F-36 style rounded ‘gull wing’ style beams (originally developed by Australia’s Lock Crowther) have always been a good start and look good, and I have gone this way in the past, as far as could be achieved in a production beam. However, such beams can be difficult and expensive to make in their ideal form, and production versions have to have compromises, resulting in a number of drawbacks.

I thus set out to solve these problems with the F-33, with the aim of providing more practical beams that offer some real advantages such as:

1. Easier to make – which makes them more reliable, and of a lower cost. Trying to achieve the ideal rounded shape on earlier production beams, meant overlapping join flanges on the beam sides, but these proved difficult in a production environment. This is because the overlapping top sides tended to scrape the glue off the bottom sides as the beams come together, which can make the glue join somewhat unreliable at times The production process then has to be properly and very carefully supervised, and such joins frequently checked. The F-33 join flanges were thus made horizontal, and wide for simple, reliable, and easy assembly. ‘One off’ beams such as those for the F-9A/F-82/F-36/F-39 beams don’t have join flanges and they can be molded into the ideal shape with foam fairings on the front, but this is not practical with production beams.

2. Beam Recesses Eliminated – these are the notches into the main hull where the beams are normally bolted in my older designs. Drawbacks are they take up interior room, plus they can be a nuisance when the boat is folded, and they add weight. A complete rethink and redesign eliminated them altogether by moving the beams completely outside the main hull, which also made them shorter (lighter and with a lower trailering height). It is also now much easier to fit and maintain the required mounting plates and compression pads, while the only thing left in the main hull is a small slot for the upper folding strut.

View of Forward Beam Bulkhead area – no intrusion by the folding system or beams, only the Upper Folding Strut pivot pin cover plate being visible inside.

3. Drier – this was probably the most important aspect that I wanted to improve. The F-31 for instance is a very dry boat at normal or even above normal monohull speeds, but over 15 knots, and in a chop, then it can get rather wet at times. Main culprits are the leeward folding struts and beam outer ends, which can generate spray when they hit wave tops. This spray can be shot up vertically, and find its way into the cockpit, and also force itself through gaps under the aft beams where they connect to the main hull.

To improve matters, lower folding struts were moved higher, by anchoring inside the beams rather than below. A close look was then taken at the beam shape, particularly the aft beam outer ends near the floats, which could frequently hit wave tops and send water flying in all directions. Beam was reshaped to direct this water downwards, while the horizontal join flanges were made oversize and right above the initial contact area to catch any spray that may still head upwards, and slam it back down again.

The ideal production beam shape? Outer ends are set high with sides angled to deflect wave tops down, while large overlapping join flanges make it difficult for any spray to escape upwards.

The beam to hull connection had already been moved completely outside the main hull, to eliminate beam recesses, and this had the additional benefit of eliminating any gaps between the beam and hull in the coaming area where water could force its way through into the cockpit.

4. Brackets and Bolts Eliminated – the F-33 is intended to be an ocean capable boat, and thus I wanted to eliminate all the aluminum brackets and stainless steel bolts that go into the carbon fiber beams. These have to have special treatment to ensure 100% long term reliability when bolted through the carbon fiber used in the beams, and thus require special supervision in the production environment. Eliminating these removes ninety six (yes, 96) 1/2″ stainless steel bolts and 32 aluminum brackets (heavy and labor intensive). They have been replaced by 100% integrated carbon fiber anchors, which destruct tests have shown to be enormously strong, while also eliminating any point loading and potential leak problems.

5. Compression Pads Improved – No More Creaking! A very high inwards compression force is generated in the beams while sailing, and this has to be absorbed into the main hull via compression pads. These need to be adjusted properly otherwise there can be a slight in and out movement of the beams, which, while usually harmless, can sometimes generate an annoying creaking noise. Twin compression pads are now used, both of which are easily accessible and adjustable, virtually eliminating any chance of creaking. SHADOWFAX has not creaked once since launching.

6. Wingnet lashings Covered – another problem always present with earlier beams was the danger of stepping too near the beams in the wing net lashing area. One’s foot could go through this gap, if not careful, with painful results. This possibility has now been eliminated by the lashing being concealed under the beam join flanges, making it virtually impossible for a foot to slip through. The beams themselves now also offer a nice wide and safe walking area.

7. Disassembly Possible – Fully integrated beams that are permanently attached to the float look nice, but they have proved to be impractical, as they make it very difficult to replace a beam or a float, raising repair and insurance costs. It is also impossible to disassemble the boat to where it can be fitted inside a container for easy shipping. Thus the F-33 beams are bolted into molded sockets in the floats, making disassembly easy and practical.

8. All epoxy construction – as throughout the F-33, only epoxy resin is used in the beam construction, which is the toughest, most durable, most fatigue resistant, and most waterproof resin available.

The new beams are thus significantly better, being stronger, lighter, shorter, more reliable, and drier. They are much safer to walk on, or around, the flanges give something to hang on to while sitting, and there is no intrusion into the main hull, with the nuisance beam recesses completely eliminated.


Kick-up rudders have been used successfully for years, where the rudder blade is pivoted in the case and will swing back. But they come with one annoying problem – they are just about impossible to steer with when swung back to reduce draft for shallow water. Daggerboard rudders solve this problem by lifting vertically, and have also been around for years, but also come with a problem – they cannot kick back. Thus if one hits anything the rudder can be destroyed, or worse, ripped off the transom.

The only way to solve this was by developing a new kick up daggerboard rudder, which has now been done with the F-33.

SHADOWFAX at Southport Yacht Club, on the delivery trip, awaiting better weather. The new daggerboard style rudder case is visible here, rudder blade being on port wing net
Blade in place, and retracted – this can give excellent control in shallow waters, coupled with a light helm,
something a swing back style kick up rudder does not do well. The rudder can also be retracted in lighter
airs for less drag.
Rudder sleeve shown kicked back – this built in ‘kick back’ ability will help avoid any damage or even complete loss should rudder hit anything, which has always been the main concern with such daggerboard rudders.

Rudder case and blade are of epoxy glass/carbon composite construction, and rudder assembly will be attached to boat with CNC machined aluminum transom brackets. Fully integrated carbon fiber transom brackets will be optional (standard on the F-33R) and these are shown. Special Teflon filled acetal rudder bearings are then fitted in embedded G10 fiberglass bushings to give a totally slop free rudder, with a very smooth feel.

Rudder fully down. This new style rudder system can also be bolted on to F-9A and F-31s, using the same
gudgeon bolt holes, the old stainless steel gudgeons being replaced by new aluminum gudgeons with the
Teflon/acetal bearings, eliminating all metal to metal contact (and slop). A similar ‘bolt on’ rudder system
will also be developed for F-24s, F-25Cs, F-82s, and F-28s when time permits.


The F-33 mast step is another new and improved feature. There’s no need to insert any pins when attaching the mast base to the deck/step which can be an awkward and time consuming task. The mast base has two slots which instead just slide over a pin in the step. The sheaves are also in the mast base itself, so that once the mast is raised, there is no need to thread the halyards through any sheaves in the deck step, which is another awkward job eliminated, all of which makes the mast raising process faster and easier.

The mast raising pole yoke (which is now very compact) is held to the mast base by one pin. One then removes this and inserts it through the mast step to lock the mast to the deck step, to ensure the mast cannot jump off the step.

Better still, on the F-33 you can remove the daggerboard without having to unbolt the step from the deck, as with earlier designs, a process which can take some time. The F-33 mast step will also allow the mast to lean over sideways in any direction, without breaking the step, which is another important factor while folding the boat or raising the mast.

Mast step area with new step – note also the concealed/flush daggerboard control lines


The bow wing increases bow net area to make foredeck wider and safer. It also provides an external area on the side of the bow to mount or set the anchor from. Eliminates the awkward and difficult task of setting anchor forward under headsail or through pulpit, where space is very constricted, particularly with headsail lowered.

The bow wing while sailing – anchor roller on starboard side.


The aft beam folding strut, and the fully integrated carbon fiber folding strut anchors.
The roomy anchor well and close up of the bow wing
Carbon fiber retractable bow pole, with integrated carbon fiber anchors for screacher and bob stay
Aft beam bulkhead as viewed from aft cabin – no intrusion of folding system – even the three bolts shown are being eliminated in future boats. Aft bunk starts at bulkhead and extends back 6′ 8″ so there is plenty of room/height etc. A foot well in aft bunk can divide it into two separate singles, while also offering a comfortable seating area around the sides. Even a center table could be fitted.
Carbon fiber float chainplate, and composite wingnet supports. Daggerboard rudder blade on wingnets.
Close up of chainplate with optional turnbuckle – synthetic rigging with Precourt deadeyes will be standard
on the F-33, but stainless steel rigging will remain an option for those still not ready for synthetic rigging.
The integrated carbon fiber forestay chainplate.



The F-33 is a true ‘designer’s boat’, and comes with a simple, practical and roomy interior. As a general guide, the interior volume is 33% larger than the F-31, 14% smaller than the new Corsair 36, and 40% smaller than the new F-39.

This is a basic ‘R’ type interior as used in SHADOWFAX, with table removed – light and airy

The F-33 interior has a very spacious feel, with full standing headroom, and comfortable seats with a great view. The optional forward galley as shown is smaller than designed, as per the owner’s requirements, who wanted a more basic ‘R’ type interior, with a portable camp stove, rather than a fitted one. The private head area (forward on port side) is surprisingly roomy, with its own private entrance in the bow compartment. It can be fitted out with full vanity, hot and cold water etc. Photos of the full standard interior will become available once boats now being built are complete.

The F-33 has restored the original F-27’s easy open access to all areas, and without gelcoated fiberglass interior liners. Such liners are very heavy and are not a good idea for any ocean capable multihull, reducing the important load carrying ability, while also covering many areas that should be readily available for easy inspection.The standard F-33 interior finish in most areas will be Frontrunner fabric, which is a very thin and light weight super tough fabric, but also one of the most expensive interior marine fabrics on the market. However, it is chosen because it works so well, is actually even lighter than paint, is warm and friendly to the touch, and looks great. A ‘wipe down’ glossy finish will still be used where needed, such as galley and head areas. SHADOWFAX’s interior is painted with a semi-gloss LP paint in a beautiful patterned finish (Option B on Price/Specification List).

Looking aft, the optional inboard being visible

The attractive glossy finish that is the main advantage of gelcoated liners will still be available (Option A), but achieved only by using an LP paint directly on the faired hull, rather than using liners. It will be a more expensive option, but only for those who prefer it, so every F-33 buyer will not need to pay the high extra cost associated with developing and making interior liner molds, or be subjected to the extra weight.

The roomy aft cabin – and this is the narrow end of the large aft double berth! Plenty of sitting headroom here too, with a handy footwell (out of picture).
The very private head/shower area – simple and clean – and as about as basic as one can get on SHADOWFAX. A fully installed marine head (both manual and electic) is also an available option, along with a vanity unit which will fit on the right (port) side.

To Summarize:

The F-33 is a technically advanced new maxi-trailerable design being built to very high quality standards.

Like all Farrier designs, it is designed as a roomy and very safe true cruising design, but one that also just happens to be very fast.

It trailers at 9′ 6″ wide, which will just require a simple yearly permit in most areas, and this is usually a simple process.

Pete Pattullo’s F-33R #9, having just been delivered in Texas

Download Original Full Specification and Option List

Availability – as of May, 2013

The strong Australian dollar since 2004 (up 69%) made it uneconomical to build the F-33 Down Under for export to other countries, so it had to be discontinued. However, a new 2013 F-33 has now been developed, and being built in Subic Bay, in the Philippines, it is ecomonical once more to manufacture and make available for sale world wide

The original F-33 was certainly a great boat and raised the bar far higher than earlier designs while outdating all the competition. However, the new 2013 F-33 is even better with even more new advancements.

Ian Farrier

F-33 News and Race reports:

The Initial Launching Report

First F-33 Sailing in U.K.

First F-33 Launched in Florida

F-33R Wins Southampton – Poole Race

F-33R Wins The ‘Round Island Race’

F-33 Wins Inaugural Multihull Class at Cowes Week

F-33 Launched in New York

F-33 Launched in Texas

F-33, and F-33R are trademarks of Farrier Marine, Inc.