Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Design 1479 - Alembic

I very much wish we had an image of this attractive cutter. According to the designers comments she was designed for optimum upwind ability. She was built of wood by Chapman & Kalayjian of Costa Mesa, California and launched in 1960. It is interesting that she is strip planked.

Designed for a chemical researcher, her name is unique. The word alembic is today almost obsolete. It is an ancient device used for distillation. Apparently a logo representing an Alembic was placed on the mainsail and a plaque as follows was affixed to the main bulkhead: Alembics were tools of the alchemists of early days used to derive essences of material things like flowers or spirits of wines and in like way this ship Alembic will now serve to develop the spirit of man and sea.

Diagrams of Early Alembics

Someone made the following sketch in the technical files, which is a facsimile of the logo used on the sail.

Here is the general arrangement plan.

Here's an early article about the design.

Principal Dimensions
LOA 47'-9"
LWL 33'-6"
Beam 11'-6"
Draft 6'-10"
Displacement 30,300 lbs
Ballast 11,890 lbs (outside) 500 lbs (inside)
Sail Area 1,010 sq ft


  1. Hello, I am the current owner of Alembic, which is now sailing out of Pt. Townsend, WA. Is there a place to send a current image to be added to this blog?

  2. My grandfather built her, I would love to know where she is and how she is....I have pictures of her being built ....you can reach me scottbode2002@gmail.com