New F-9AX Building In South Africa

Frans Loots writes:

Hallo Ian,

I thought you might find the attached pictures of some interest seeing that there could not be too many of your boats in South Africa. I have made contact with a person in the Western Cape who is going to build an F-82 soon.

This is my F-9AX in its early stages with the builder Alyster Forsyth.

Having studied the plans I came to the conclusion that I would not have enough spare time to tackle the whole project without some help with the foam and glass work. I was also scared that a regular "boat builder" would not appreciate the attention to detail which is required to build a light and strong trimaran.

This lead me to employ a surfboard builder/shaper. And what a success. They are used to working with foam and their attention to detail is great (surfers are quite fussy about the finishes on their boards). Also because he has never built a boat before he reads the instructions carefully! My only boatbuilding experience is an Optimist dinghy 34 years ago and more recently a wood epoxy canoe. And so far in this project all seems to be going well thanks to the detailed plans. People I have shown the plans cannot believe the detail you have given but I suppose you hear that all the time!

The floats are now ready for fairing and outside glassing. I must say that we got very fair pontoons straight out of the form frames.

The building process has created a lot of interest amongst some experienced sailors looking for a better way to sail so who knows, you might just get a few more orders from this part of the world.


Frans Loots

St Francis Bay,
South Africa

PS. If you ever were a surfer in the 1960's you might remember the surfing cult movie "The Endless Summer". Well, it was here in St Francis Bay that the producers discovered what they then called "the perfect wave" in the movie. That is our village's claim to fame.

Fitting the vertical foam strips - the temporary wood strips help hold the foam in place until
edge glue is cured and the screws are added from behind. They are then removed just before
laminating inner skin. Note the size of the foam strips which are quite large but still easy to
handle. Cuts down work tremendously over the old fore and aft strip method.

More Information on the F-9AX

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