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Who Is NZ's Top Contemporary Sailing Multihull Designer?

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I guess my all time favorites are Malcolm Tennant and Ron Given but who stands out in the last couple of decades from the new designers. There are plenty to choose from.

 

There is certainly a huge variety from designers during this time ranging from small to large, cruising to out and out racing machines. So what criterion should be used. There is one feature of New Zealand yacht design in general, there are a lot of one or two off designs over the years so I guess one criterion of success has to be the number of the design/s launched.

 

Purely on the numbers launched you have to say the Weta Trimaran from Weta Marine with nine hundred launched and counting has got to be the most successful multihull design ever out of New Zealand. What an amasing all round success story from the team at Weta Marine. So Roger and Chris Kitchen are the top multihull design team? Well no they are not. Roger came up with a great idea but he is no boat designer so he commissioned TC Designs Tim Clissold to design the Weta for him back in 2004. Unfortunately there was a falling out between Clissold and Kitchen and Weta Marine have never acknowledge Clissold as the designer although legally they are required to.

If you know Clissolds other work you can see Clissold design smarts very clearly in the Weta.

 

Looking at Clissolds design portfolio from the Weta to A class cats, open deck and bridge deck cruising cats to the out right racing machine X-Factor you have to say Clissold is a top contender for the title.

 

So who do you think deserve the title?

 

Adding to the great Weta Marine story and the hugely successful Weta Trimiran the fact is the Weta Tri very nearly didn't get designed and built. Originally Roger Kitchen approached TC Design to design a small catamaran for young sailors to learn to sail and have fun on. Tim Clissold had a hard job talking him out of this and getting him to go for a trimaran sail trainer instead. Obviously Roger hadn't done much small cat sailing because in the hands of inexperienced sailors you spend an awful amount of time in irons trying to get the blasted thing to go about. Enough to put a lot of kid and adults for that matter off learning to sailing. A small well designed trimaran on the other hand handles like a dream when tacking.

 

mysailing.com.au - boat test

 

01 Mar 2011

The Weta too easy

By Jordan Spencer

 

“Designed by Roger and Chris Kitchen, the father and son team at Weta Marine in New Zealand, the Weta was three years in development”

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Guest Saturday Night Special

TC who else ? he has done the TW upgrade as well as his other work. He just needs a big high profile design project not a compromise like x factor

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I think TC for sure.

 

Though, owning a JT - I love his designs, but they are not as prolific as TC's weta, and having looked at all the TC designs, we both love his lines and use of space. Pulse is a real winner.

 

If ever we were to build again, Tim would most likely be the man we would approach to refine our ideas.

 

M

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Ian Farrier - he kind of invented the Genre of folding Trimarans and I think has about 3000 kicking about worldwide, has been very successful overseas with what is (now I've tried playing around with one's design) an incredibly tricky set of conflicting requirements. Christchurch is part of NZ (just).

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Ian Farrier - he kind of invented the Genre of folding Trimarans and I think has about 3000 kicking about worldwide, has been very successful overseas with what is (now I've tried playing around with one's design) an incredibly tricky set of conflicting requirements. Christchurch is part of NZ (just).

 

yup, hard to go past Ian Farrier. Look a the numbers. Hard to go past that.

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Not that it entirely answers your question but I would go straight to Tim C to design a new main hull for Timberwolf if that opportunity ever arises.

 

He did an awesome job on the amas.

 

Like NZ Rat says you have to bear in mind that there were big compromises on X Factor both to accomodate her owners short handed requirements and as well with her actual sailing weight.

 

Many of his bigger designs have been very cruising oriented but I'd believe he could design an awesome no holds barred racer.

 

Half of the designers battle is just who the client is and what their individual criteria are .

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Half of the designers battle is just who the client is and what their individual criteria are

 

Exactly!!

 

The designer puts together a boat that ticks the boxes of the person who commissions the design (ya know, the guy actually paying the bills) and the harbour racers bag the boat for being too much of a lardy arse cruiser, while the cruisers bag the boat for being too spartan and race oriented. The local bar flys and boat fleas decide the designer is a know-nothing chump because he didn't design whatever it is they think they'd like to see on the harbour (but won't front up with the cash to get it designed or built). And sometimes, the designer has to grit his teeth and draw up something that he would never produce if someone wasn't asking (and paying him) to do it ... his challenge then is to make it the best he can.

 

Meanwhile, the new owner (the guy that specified the design and paid for it all) is sailing away happy as larry and proud as punch because (hopefully) he's got the boat of his dreams. And you know what? When it comes down to it, that's the only guy that really matters.

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