Thursday, May 17, 2012

Design 1767 - Aquarius 40

 Boo Hoo

We have posted about this well utilized and popular design before.  As can be found in a previous posting, various boats were built of both wood and fiberglass to this design.  For the purposes of this article let's focus on the Aquarius 40, built of fiberglass in Finland.

A writer was kind enough to send us the article found below about the design.

S&S Design #1767 - a classic yacht
Translation of an article published in the Finnish Yachting Magazine “Frisk Bris” Nr 1-2009
In the impressive list of all Sparkman & Stephens designs included in the book “The Best of the Best” Design #1767 is described briefly as follows:
Year:    1964
Client:    Various
Name/Class    Honey
Job description: R.O.R.C. aux.sloop, LOA : 39.95, DWL : 28.75, Beam : 10.04, Draft : 5.52, Type : Sloop.

R.O.R.C. means the design was adapted to the British R.O.R.C. rating rule. S&S or more specifically Olin Stephens used to analyze the rating rules for finding out what was worth doing and not doing to get a favorable rating. The other dominating rating rule at the time was the CCA rule used in the USA. The rule differences were biggest for the rigs, and therefore the rig dimensions used to be different depending on where the yacht was going to race. Also draft variations were common.

It could be mentioned that the two rating rules were soon merged into one – at an ITC meeting in London in November 1968 it was decided to replace the RORC and CCA rules with the new International Offshore Rule which contained features from both of them.

S&S had with the time built up an extensive library of completed designs which could be used as a reference for new projects, and also in this case it is obvious that an earlier design was used as a basis for #1767. In the list of S&S designs one can find #1738 having exactly the same main dimensions except for the draft which is a little more, 6.23 ft.

Because lines drawings and related calculations at the time had to be made manually it saved a lot of effort if existing information could be used with just some small modifications.

It can be pointed out that a S&S design of this age has very good performance on the wind, particularly in a blow, but does not readily surf off the wind, instead there is a tendency to rolling and broaching.

In Finland 10 yachts of GRP according to Design #1767 were built 1966…68 at a yard started up for this purpose in Hämeenlinna, and the yacht type was denoted S&S 40 by the builder.

It can be noted that this type notation already existed in the S&S list for the mentioned base Design #1738. It appears the builder’s type notation is not necessarily the same as the designer’s, and some caution is needed in this respect if only one of the notations is known. It is also possible that the as built main dimensions differ from the numbers stated in the list of designs.

The name of the new yard was Teksoglass. A company with this name already existed, but so far it had manufactured glassfiber weaves. It is likely that these weaves were used for the boatbuilding, but the yard’s history was very short, it was laid down in 1969. 3 of the yachts were sold to Finland, 5 to Sweden, and 2 to Norway.

The driving force behind this boatbuilding project was Åke Lindqvist, at the time Chief Surveyor to Lloyd’s Register in Finland. He had an active interest in offshore racing, had established contacts with S&S, and the knowledge for performing scantling calculations for the yachts. GRP was then a new and unknown material for boatbuilding, and it is likely that Lloyd’s scantling rules at the time partly built on Åke’s contributions.

An interesting detail can be mentioned here – the builders knew that air inclusions in the laminate are not acceptable, and in order to enable easy control of this transparent gelcoat was used, this made the hull translucent. The outside was then painted in a color to the owner’s choice.

The owner of the first hull was Göran Olofsson, he named his yacht BOO-HOO, Åke built the second hull for his own use and named her EVA II, and the third owner was Peter Fazer with FÅGEL BLÅ.  EVA II is nowadays in Sweden and named GRY, earlier names SCHALU and SPARK, the two others have remained in Finland. Olofsson owned BOO-HOO until 2006 when he sold her to Hans Johansson and Joakim Wilenius.

One of the Swedish yachts was named GALLANT, and she was painted light blue. The others were named GONNY, ANN-CHATRIN (later KRISTIN AF ARKÖSUND), NONCHALANT (later AXELINA), and GADFLY (later CATHENA). For the Swedish yachts the woodwork and outfitting was done by Bergviksvarvet, Bromma (near Stockholm).

The Norwegian yachts were named SIESTA and NORSEMAN, and the latter was somewhat different as she had the rudder moved aft and separated from the keel. NORSEMAN was extremely successful and won 45 prices out of 50 in IOR racing between 1967 and 1977 – an early indication of the dominating underwater concept of today. It is possible that some other of the Teksoglass-built yachts also has the modified rudder arrangement.

The Teksoglass moulds were bought in the 1970s by Turun Teräskaluste in Turku, and this manufacturer renamed the type Aquarius 40. The first hull was ready in the spring 1977. Six yachts were built, one of them has the rudder separated from the keel, and another has sailed around the world. A copy of the brochure for Aquarius 40 in German language is appended.

S&S also sold the same drawings to other clients. In Sweden Bröderna Martinsson had already 1964…1965, i.e. before Teksoglass, built 3 yachts in wood, they were named HONEY, PAVANE, and CHARLOTTA IV ( later BRILLIANT). HONEY was renamed ISADORA, and was sold to Finland, where she got back her original name. The name HONEY is mentioned in the S&S design list, and it is likely that she is the original Design #1767, although all 3 yachts were launched in May 1965, which is quite remarkable for a small boatyard.

In Denmark the Walsted yard built PAM to this design in wood 1966, she was recently bought to Finland, and has the rudder separated from the keel.

In New Zealand a wooden yacht was built 1964, she is called COTTON BLOSSOM, and is now in Ireland. Further two wooden yachts were built in Australia, one was named CORROBOREE. One was built in Hong-Kong named COLUMBINE, and two in Italy, more about them below.

S&S had a big and international clientele, and solely of this design 20 yachts were built. One wonders how Rod Stephens managed to inspect them all. He did inspection trips about once every month all over the world, and mentioned once that he had much more flight hours than aircraft captains – they have limits for this.

In the S&S list the next line after Design #1767 shows Design #1767.1, the added number means it is a slightly modified variation of the same basic design. The main dimensions are exactly the same, but the client was the Italian Navy, and the year 1965.

Two wooden yachts were built, named NAUSICA and CALYPSO. They are still in good shape, but for some reason they are not mentioned in the list of Italian Navy Sail Training vessels. This list mentions, however, two much larger two masted S&S designs, #1505 and #1505.1, length about 70 ft, and built in the beginning of the 1960s.

They deserve a short presentation.
One of them, named CORSARO II participated successfully in the Transpac Race 1961, and collected 1st price overall. She took also part in the Sydney Hobart Race 1965, both required very long sailing trips before and after the race, and this must have been remarkable experiences for officers and crew.

The other yacht is STELLA POLARE, she won the Giraglia Race in 1966, with a course record that stood 18 years. Two years later she won the Bermuda – Travemünde Race overall, this race was a predecessor to the Transatlantic.

Lars Ström

Here is a copy of the brochure he references.

And finally here is the construction plan for the fiberglass boats.  Sorry it's in such poor condition.


  1. Hi, the job 1767-C5 was named Charlotta III, not Charlotta IV. 1969 my father bought her and renamed her Briljant (Swedish spelling). Since the year 2000 I am the owner of the boat. She is still in a very good condition.
    Fredrik Decker, Lidingö, Sweden

  2. Attention!
    These moulds still excist, but will be destoyed do to lack of space. Any party interested in saving them should contact:
    M.B. (friend of Boo-Hoo owners)

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