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Great American IV, pristine and elegant in her new white colors, was launched last week by Joff Brown and his team in Gosport, UK.
Step 1: Out of the shed…
Step 2: Lifted in the slings, rudders installed and connected to steering linkages and autopilots, keel lifted up and into the boat to be suspended from its hinge pins and then connected to the two massive hydraulic rams that control the keel angle. This is indeed a delicate operation with the 4 ton keel (1 ton fin + 3 tons bulb) having to be controlled to millimeter clearances. The rudders and keel are painted International Orange per race rules so that they can be more easily seen if the boat is upside down.
FYI Below: The small orange squares are to indicate where a rescuer is to try to cut through the hull if the boat is upside down. The small dark pinpoints are the engine seawater intakes – one for each side. The dark areas around the olive (the hydrodynamic fairing around the hinge) are the bronze pieces that we installed to be connected to the aluminum cable going up the mast to the lightning charge dispersal unit. The actual keel box is rectangular, so normally there is a carbon (lightweight) fairing piece between the olive and the rectangular keel box. Joff had the good idea to replace that piece with bronze to make a better electrical connection to the water.
Step 3: Launch the boat!
Step 4: Install the rig…
Voila! The Open 60 Great American IV ready for her 90 Degree test!
Thanks Joff! She looks beautiful!