It is not often we have a monohull featured on the F-boat news page, and in fact this is the first time! However, Eric Sabin's story is interesting and Eric writes:
Almost two years ago I purchased a copy of your Study Book and decided to use your method of foam/sandwich construction to build a 6 metre light displacement, lift keel and interchangeable water ballasted yacht of my own design. I was then 84, hence the Old Man's Weekender bit. You later allowed me to purchase a copy of your Building Manual and with it kindly sent me some pages from your F-32 plans which you thought would be of help to me.
All of this was of immense help and as you will see from the photographs the boat is now finished. She was launched a few days before Christmas and the few sea trials I have given her since then have shown her to be a well balanced, easily single handled and good sea boat with a reasonable turn of speed. In a light to moderate breeze she quickly reaches hull speed on a reach and points high, logging almost 5 knots to windward. With her keel ballast/displacement t ratio of more than 40% she stands up well in 20+ knots of breeze without the need to use water ballast and will, I hope, lift into a plane when I really get her going.
The materials for building the boat were supplied by ATL Composites of Queensland who were also most helpful and as part of their service had their engineer look at my design and specify the necessary weights and quantities of materials for the job. When I sent them a picture of the finished boat they asked if I would draft an article for the Australian Amateur Boatbuilder magazine. I have done so and understand that it will appear in the new year.
As a matter of interest I found that by setting up the half boat moulds ‘right way up’ I was able easily and comfortably to laminate and fit out the interior almost completely while still in the mould. The halves were of course placed one on top of the other for the join.
I shall be celebrating my 86th birthday aboard ‘SOON V’ at Rottnest Island, off Fremantle early in January.
Once again, very many thanks for your help.