PxPixel
SAIL's Best Boats 2014: Gunboat - Sail Magazine

SAIL's Best Boats 2014: Gunboat

Gunboat catamarans are known for their sleek lines and speed. Owners take pride in sailing their boats, and the engines are used primarily for maneuvering and intermittent auxiliary propulsion-; they are rarely used for extended motoring.
Author:
Publish date:
Gunboat60-600x

Gunboat catamarans are known for their sleek lines and speed. Owners take pride in sailing their boats, and the engines are used primarily for maneuvering and intermittent auxiliary propulsion-; they are rarely used for extended motoring. The resulting combination of high sailing speeds and limited propulsion time provides the ideal scenario for a serial hybrid propulsion system in which a battery-powered electric motor drives the propellers.

Central to the PowerWave hybrid system aboard the Gunboat 60 is a pair of 20 kilowatt (kW) motors that can push the boat at speeds of up to 9 knots, with the initial energy provided by a 29 kilowatt-hour (kWh) lithium-ion battery pack. In practice, this battery pack will support harbor maneuvering for hours at a time and full speed operation for around 30 minutes, after which one, or both of the boat’s two 20 kW Polar Power DC generators will kick in.

With its hybrid propulsion system, the Gunboat 60 is as smart as it is good looking

With its hybrid propulsion system, the Gunboat 60 is as smart as it is good looking

Touch-screen controls keep the crew well apprised as to energy use and charge levels

Touch-screen controls keep the crew well apprised as to energy use and charge levels

A sophisticated energy management system ensures that engine operation is always at, or close to, peak fuel efficiency, while operators maintain control through a touch screen in the navigation station. A generator is held in reserve for longer passages that the batteries cannot support.

Under sail, any time boatspeed is above 8 knots substantial amounts of energy can be harvested from the freewheeling propellers-—more than enough to run the house systems and recharge the batteries. Then, when the batteries are charged, the propellers are retracted into the hull for maximum sailing speed. Given the typical operating profile of these boats, it is not unreasonable to think that many owners will enjoy an extravagant lifestyle on board without having to crank any kind of an engine for days, or even weeks at a time. gunboat.com

Related

Josie-helm-2

Chartering the U.S. and Spanish Virgins

Flying into Tortola in the British Virgin Islands one December morning, three months after Hurricane Irma, I felt like a war correspondent dispatched to the battlefront rather than a sailing magazine writer on an assignment to go cruising.As my LIAT plane descended toward Beef ...read more

Crew-North-27M004

Weather Gear for Inshore Sailing

Just because you’re not planning on braving the Southern Ocean this summer doesn’t mean that you won’t have some dicey days out on the water. If you haven’t got the right gear, a little rain or humidity can make things miserable. As with all safety equipment, “it’s always better ...read more

atlantic-cup-trailer

2018 Atlantic Cup Video Mini-Series

Atlantic Cup 2018: TrailerThis past spring, SAIL magazine was on-hand to document the 2018 Atlantic Cup, a two-week-long Class 40 regatta spanning the U.S. East Coast and one of the toughest events in all of North America. The preview above will give you a taste of the four-video ...read more

3DiNordac_webheader

3Di NORDAC: One Year In

One year ago this month, North Sails launched a cruising revolution with the introduction of 3Di NORDAC. The product promised to deliver a better cruising experience for a market that had not seen true product innovation in over 60 years. Today we’re celebrating the team that ...read more

HB96k_EP

Sea Eagle’s HB96 inflatable SUP

What SUP?Dinghies and kayaks are all very well, but there’s nothing like a stand-up paddleboard for exploring interesting new shorelines while giving you a good workout. Sea Eagle’s HB96 inflatable SUP makes a fine addition to your boat’s armory of anchorage toys, either on its ...read more

DSC_0031-43

Charting the USVI and Spanish Virgins

When my friends and I booked a one-way bareboat charter with Sail Caribe, starting in the U.S. Virgin Islands and finishing in Puerto Rico, we were a little nervous about what we would find in the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and Maria—even seven months later.When our plane ...read more

SailRepairKit

Know How: Sail Repair Kit

Despite your best efforts, there will inevitably be times when your sail gets damaged while at sea and needs to be repaired. First, no matter what the job, you will need to do a quick damage assessment, a task that requires a flat wooden surface, sharp scissors and a helping ...read more

01-061018ROAC-8149

Coming of Age at the Atlantic Cup

Midway through the final race of the inshore portion of the 2018 Atlantic Cup, the three boats in the lead—Mike Dreese’s Toothface 2, Mike Hennessy’s Dragon and Oakcliff Racing, representing the Long Island Sound-based sailing school of the same name—suddenly broke free from the ...read more

01_silken_2018-03-08-0052

North U’s Regatta Experience Program

“Want to check the keel?” North U Coach Geoff Becker calls to me from back by the transom. We’ve just suffered our worst finish in the regatta and are absolutely flying on our way back to shore, spinnaker up and heeling at an angle that feels like maybe we’re tempting fate. ...read more