Strength, Comfort & Speed
The new Aerodyne 47 follows the recent successful introduction of the Aerodyne 38. This heat-cured-epoxy cruising boat is an attempt to raise the standard of every aspect of cruising boats in this size range. We have tried to improve on the status quo in the following ways:
1. The hull itself, is shaped for performance & seakindly motion, based on our experience with Round-The-World racing boats, & then the accommodations are comfortably fitted to the hull, rather than building a bargelike envelope around the accommodations.
2. The structure of the boat is all heat-cured epoxy resin with high performance fibres; this high strength raceboat construction is considerably stronger than conventional polyester- or vinyl-ester production boat lay-ups.
3. A true seagoing interior that does not compromise comfort, function & easy maintenance.
The Aerodyne 47 is designed from the start with a priority on good sailing characteristics. The hull is fine forward to give a smooth ride, and the round-sectioned stern provides excellent tracking & steering characteristics at any sailing heel angle. The hull has a small waterplane (footprint) for low wetted surface (reduced drag) and the hull flares out to the broad beam to give excellent sailing stability. The combination of a fine, wave-piercing entry, a narrow waterplane and light weight make for a hull that is very easily driven under sail or power. These features are important, & are ignored or overlooked in many of the designs of other cruising boats. The Aerodyne 47 has a polar performance diagram that will please those who sail for its own rewards & pleasantly surprise those used to less refined cruising craft.
The jib is self-tacking, so a shorthanded crew can tack just by turning the wheel or resetting the autopilot. A furling drifter or a gennaker can be set flying from the short bowsprit for enjoyable light air sailing. All sail & reefing controls come back to jammers & winches each side of the cockpit. Our experience with singlehanded racing boats will be apparent to anyone who experiences her ease of helm & sailhandling. The Aerodyne 47 as described here is sized to go through the Intracoastal Waterway bridges and draws only 6 feet (1.83m). She is also available with greater rig height & draft.
AT Marine has long experience in high-specification composite structures. This integrity was behind their decision to build all their boats with Epoxy resin, heat-cured for the best possible properties. This is the construction method chosen for the best custom yachts, and gives the Aerodyne 47 an extra margin of strength and durability. The structural epoxy framing system is specifically engineered to absorb and disperse keel-grounding loads and rigging loads as well as wave impacts. The full watertight bulkhead in the bow, 6.5 feet from the stem, is a further offshore safety feature. All bulkheads & most of the interior are cored for structural stability & light weight. There is no better composite structural system. An additional improvement in finish & weight savings is that all the Aerodyne boats are primed & painted with Awlgrip Marine paints. They have no gel coats or mat!
The owner’s suite is forward, with easy, open, well lit spaces & huge storage. A ‘wall’ of hanging lockers & drawers on the starboard side joins a vanity, with a sink & lockers below. Large drawers below the berth have additional longer-term storage outboard. The cabin is set well aft of the bow, so enjoys a beamy part of the hull. The head and shower are forward of this, once again spacious & well lit.
The main mast bulkhead divides the owner’s suite from the saloon. Once again, open use of space & natural light prevail. The settee to starboard has a slide-out centre section that forms an ottoman for relaxed conversation, facing the entertainment lockers behind the u-shaped seating area opposite. On both sides there are hull ports for outside views and excellent lockers fore and aft of the ports. A deep, full-sized nav. station/desk abuts the starboard settee, with a swivel-out seat facing instruments outboard & a full electrical panel on the bulkhead aft. A deep filing cabinet is built into the base of the settee, alongside the navigator’s left leg.
On the opposite side the galley is full of well-thought-out features. A large work-surface area is surrounded by high fiddles. The centreline double sink is over the engine (on which more anon) and has good space around it for setting up plates & drinks. The athwartship counter is wide & houses a large locker and, outboard, a slide-out garbage bin which reveals a recycling bin when slid out further. Very handy. Fridge & freezer are outboard, with a convenient front-opening door to the fridge, as well as top access. Overhead lockers abound outboard, and lead aft to the microwave with extractor above a 3-burner Force 10 stove & oven. Perhaps the crowning feature of the galley is a dedicated pantry, full height, in the area alongside the companionway. This is high & wide enough to provide enormous storage, but kept shallow so that food items are not lost in the back & hard to retrieve. Once again, good light & ventilation. The galley itself is the ideal “C” shape. You’ll never use a “U” again!
On the starboard side there is a handy head & shower, shared with the guest cabin, aft. This has a huge double berth, ventilated by hatches into the cockpit footwell & with a port in the hull and in the house-side. Hanging lockers and a bureau outboard are augmented by storage drawers under the berth and under the companionway, inboard.
On the opposite side, abaft the galley pantry, a door leads into a workshop & storage area, also accessible by a hatch in the cockpit seat above. This area has a workbench outboard, at which one can work while standing in the cockpit locker. You might feel like a bit on a nana while so disposed, but you will be the envy of your fellow skippers. Inboard in the area below the cockpit footwell, there is storage for slide-out plastic bins, as well as a ‘pump-room’ at the forward end. There is additional storage behind the aft cabin & workshop bulkhead.
The whole interior has an easy flow to it with carefully apportioned space for each area’s function & enjoyment.
Engine & Systems
A pleasant offspring of the diminished weight and wetted area is the reduced horsepower required to motor effectively. Only 32 shaft horsepower are required to move the fully loaded Aerodyne 47 at her near 9 knot hull speed. The modest fuel consumption of her non-turbo 56 horsepower Yanmar diesel engine gives range for long passages, while maintaining abundant reserve for accessories and powering hard in heavy seas and currents.
The engine is fitted within the galley sink-island. All filters & maintenance items are in a locker at the forward end, and general engine access is superb, with doors on every side. Proper gasketing and insulation ensure quiet operation.
Comfort aboard is improved by the use of modern electrical appliances. A double approach was taken toward this end; provide a great amount of available power and use it sparingly. The design incorporates four very capacious 8D house batteries; a 24 volt system to distribute it efficiently; and a huge 150 amp @24vDC alternator to replace it effectively. This allows power winches, windlass, autopilot, refrigeration and lighting as well as modest airconditioning and a washer dryer. The incorporation of the latest aerogel insulation technology and superior refrigeration equipment gives 2-3 day hold-over within normal recharge voltages. High efficiency fluorescent, halogen and LED lighting make light demands of the system. Many shipboard lifestyle compromises have thereby been avoided.
Starting from the bow; a well-engineered bowsprit/anchoring system is well-integrated with the needs of the bow pulpit and the headstay furling. The base for the jib’s self-tacking boom is just aft of the furler & out of the way of the vertical-axis windlass. Two big, self-draining deck lockers give access to chain & rode on one side & to storage for a furling drifter &/or gennaker on the other. The lockers are divided by a structural longitudinal bulkhead.
A built in toerail, an integral part of the deck design, surrounds the entire deck. The side decks are wide and clear as the chainplates are out at the hull for superior mast support with reduced compression and rigging loads. The house is low forward, & carefully blended into the deck. Hatches are numerous. The boat can be sailed without leaving the cockpit. Furling, reef lines, sheets for main & jib, and all other sail controls lead aft to the dodger on each side. they then run in special covered areas behind the cockpit seat backrests to a row of jammers & winches on each side. These winches are placed so as to be handy to the helmsman as well as anyone in the cockpit.
The area under the hard dodger is long enough to allow sitting, facing aft, straight-legged within the available aft plastic curtains. An area on the port side, on the house top is made flat for laying out a chart. The middle of the 3-paneled front can be opened for ventilation. The top part of the pantry, accessible easily from the cockpit, holds an EPIRB & has a place for binoculars & other small items of use on deck. The port side cockpit locker gives access to the workshop/storage area below.
The helm has comfortable seating all around. The slightly raised seat area each side of the wheel helps keep deck water away. Winches for the drifter or gennaker sheets are aft in this area, aft, and there are hatches immediately alongside the wheel which access a vented propane and outboard-fuel locker to starboard & a lazarette to port. The seat behind the helm contains the life raft, to port, and a section to starboard can be hinged back onto the remaining part of the seat to allow generous access to the swimming/boarding platform area. Dinghy access & egress is made easy. The deck & cockpit are well thought out, and will allow the boat to be adapted to use without the hard dodger (& with a folding soft dodger) with minor changes.
The Aerodyne 47 represents a great effort to provide a very competent, contemporary cruising yacht of extremely high structural quality, great comfort & convenience, with excellent sailing qualities. The overall concept represents contributions by various highly experienced individuals in the fields of fast sailing, durable engineering & long-term cruising practice. The Aerodyne 47 is designed with materials & equipment chosen for their durability & longevity, to provide a lifetime of pride in ownership.
The first Aerodyne 47, “Eagle’s Wings” was launched & sea-trialled in Cape Town in that wild coast’s notoriously rough conditions & was praised for her easy motion, speed & control stability. She was then sailed on her own bottom, to the U. S. East Coast to be delivered to her owners, Vic & Peggy DeMattia. She has since cruised the U. S. East Coast from Florida to Rhode Island & made her debut at the Newport Boat Show in September 2001. She has also been tested, reviewed & hailed for her success as a fast comfortable cruising boat by Blue Water Sailing, Cruising World & was chosen by Outside magazine for the annual ‘must have’ ‘O’ list! We have had a lot of interest in the Aerodyne 47, both in its standard form and as the Aerodyne 47 GT, the higher performance raceable version. Look out!
Aerodyne 47 Sailplan
Aerodyne 47 Composite Plan