June 1997 Sea Spray - Gareth Cooke
Three years ago Jeff Maddren rented a workshop to a 22 year old boat-builder starting out in his first business. He followed the progress of his tenant and came to appreciate the skills of the young man who also designed several of the boats produced in his yard. When Maddren decided to extend his sailing horizons and commission his own boat, he looked no further than the boatbuilder / designer occupying his workshop: Richard Edlin. Maddren had already seen Edlin's own 1O.5m cruiser / racer, Voodoo Lounge, and was impressed enough to commission a similar boat but with a more cruising orientated emphasis. "We saw Richard had a lot of talent and decided to be part of it," says Maddren.
Edlin, 25, served his boatbuilding apprenticeship under the watchful eye of Auckland boatbuilder Terry Bailey and started his own boatbuilding and design business in 1994. In a short space of time Edlin has established himself as a multi-talented designer. As well as 8.0,10.5 and 13m yachts, he has also designed several trimarans and eagerly awaits his first powerboat commission. Maddren, who admits he and wife, Helen, had limited keelboat experience, relied heavily on input from Edlin who appreciated the free reign given to him. "Basically Jeff let us run wild which was really good," says Edlin. "It was a great project to be involved in." Maddren's brief was for a safe boat that could be cruised by minimum crew yet 'be reasonably competitive in Wednesday night and coastal races. Also at the back of his mind was a personal goal to sail offshore when he had gained enough experience. Voodoo Lounge was used as a bench mark for his new boat but Maddren admits in many ways he was thrown in the deep end. However, a keen ear and some sound advice from Edlin helped Maddren achieve his goals.
One of Maddren's requirements was that the boat should be able to cover miles easily under sail or motor.
To ensure good sailing performance, displacement was kept moderate and the hull was given an easily-driven shape. The for'ard sections are full and the topsides for'ard have plenty of flare giving the boat buoyancy and creating more deck and interior space. The middle to stern sections are powerful and have form stability through a reasonable turn in the bilges. The forward flare is not carried aft. Pleasant aesthetics make Crewcial Fix easy on the eye; generous topsides, wide beam and a brass rub strip on the gunwale give a robust appearance. On deck, the fullness of the bow is unusual and resembles the wide foredeck area of a power boat. In the forepeak, the roller furler is recessed below deck level and is accessible through the large anchor locker. Anchoring is made easy by a low profile capstan and a stainless steel stem fitting that keeps the anchor well clear of the straightish stem. The anchor can remain in the stem fitting while underway, meaning there is no struggling with the anchor each time it is raised or lowered. The stainless pulpit is made in two halves and allows easy access to the stem fitting which is also used as a tack line fastening point for gennakers. The deck is painted in Don't Slip non- skid which provides excellent traction and is gentle on legs and pants. Don't Slip is applied with a trowel and then smoothed with a textured roller. The conventional T-shape cockpit is large enough for a race crew to work but the winch layout could be improved. With the mainsheet eased, the leeward secondary winch was badly affected by the mainsheet which ran directly over it; this could cause problems when gybing. Although the leeward secondary is not used downwind it would be better to have it in an operable position. If the boat is raced there will certainly be times when it is needed. Under the cockpit sole is a junk locker big enough to store a life raft and other accessories.