These are some of the initial naval architecture and engineering drawings that Vripack has prepared for a 141-footer being built at JFA shipyard in France. Called a Research Vessel Yacht by the design team, since the owner wants to explore far-flung regions without restrictions, she marks the third collaboration on a boat of this size between the designers and the builder.
Vripack actually began initial work on the drawings in February of last year. Note that they’re 3D. This technique is employed by many leading design and build firms, as it makes the construction process much more efficient. I’ve looked over the shoulders of a few naval architecture and engineering experts as they’ve “spun” everything from individual rooms to full deck levels on their computer screens, analyzing where piping runs and various connections encounter bulkheads. To this efficiency point, Vripack says the first structural modules were delivered within six months.
Much of the structure and even mechanical systems of this all-aluminum megayacht are the same as the previous project, a 122-footer, that Vripack and JFA saw delivered in 2003. There are some differences, however, particularly where the engine room is concerned. Besides gaining space from being aboard a larger yacht, the room itself was made longer to provide the engineer with additional space to maintain and inspect equipment. Otherwise most rooms are only slightly different than those aboard the 122-footer.
The 141-footer’s hull and superstructure will be welded together this June. Delivery is anticipated for summer of 2010, when I fully expect the owner will put the 4,000-nautical-mile range to the test, thanks to twin 750-hp Cummins running at 12 knots.