This month marked a major milestone for Spirit Yachts. The shipyard completed its largest-ever hull rollover, that of the Spirit 111. The project is doubly important, since she’s one of the largest wood yachts constructed in the UK.
In fact, outside of the famed J-Class Shamrock, launched in 1930, the Spirit 111 is the biggest wooden, single-masted sailing yachts built there. LOA is 111 feet (33.9 meters), with a 20’10” (6.4-meter) beam. Spirit Yachts employs cold-molded construction, something it’s done since opening its doors in 1993.
Even though the rollover itself took just half an hour, prep and return work took two days. Day one, for instance, saw the hull come off of its construction cradle, then move outside the build shed. On day two, four cranes raised and flipped it right side up. As the pictures show, Mother Nature wasn’t terribly cooperative, delivering rain showers. However, winds were not an issue.
Through to formal launch next year, Spirit Yachts will now install the interior. Featuring a cocoon-like design inside, the Spirit 111 should look cozy. The owner asked Rhoades Young Design and the shipyard to make everything seem as if it’s part of the yacht’s structure. Walls therefore follow the curvature of the hull.
What’s also quite interesting about the project: her eco-minded systems. Air conditioning, water heaters, the galley stove, and more all will draw less electricity than is customary. In addition, four lithium battery banks will power an electric drive system. This will come into play when the Spirit 111 cruises short distances, or maneuvers in anchorages.
Perhaps most noteworthy of all, though, the owner plans to run the yacht himself. “A single-masted wooden yacht of this size that can also be owner-driven is nothing less than a feat of engineering,” says Sean McMillan, Spirit Yachts’ CEO and chief designer. Upon delivery, the owner plans to enjoy both cruising and regattas, particularly Med-based superyacht regattas.