Hand Laid in the USA


biaxial fiberglass and vinylester resin

Workers at Pacific Seacraft laminate these hulls by hand, using vinylester resin and layers of biaxial fiberglass laid at 45- and 90-degree axes for enhanced multidirectional strength. The decks are cored with balsa wood except for those areas where fasteners pierce through or fixtures are mounted; those spots are cored with either marine plywood, high-density foam, or solid fiberglass. The two-tone deck is accomplished by masking off the nonskid areas in the mold prior to gelcoat application. This yields a very durable surface.

Pacific Seacraft uses 1-inch stainless bolts to attach the lead keel to the bilge. The keel is also set in epoxy and is mated to a very heavily laminated fiberglass keel stub that is integral to the hull. For the hull stem, the company said it uses roughly three times the fiberglass content that other firms use.

For the hull-deck joint on the 31, Brodies workers utilize a 2-inch, inward-turning flange on the hull mated to a flange on the deck, and the joint is adhered with 3M 5200 and through-bolted on 6-inch centers with quarter-inch, stainless-steel machine screws. (This method is used on all of the companys models.)

Down below, there are only partial bulkheads, except for the lone partition between the V-berth and the anchor-chain locker forward. These are fabricated from marine plywood sheathed in a teak veneer. A 3-inch, stainless-steel, tubular compression post supports the deck-stepped mast.

Darrell Nicholson, editor of Practical Sailor, grew up boating on Miami’s Biscayne Bay on everything from prams to Morgan ketches. Two years out of Emory University, after a brief stint as a sportswriter, he set out from Miami aboard a 60-year-old wooden William Atkin ketch named Tosca. For 10 years, he and writer-photographer Theresa Gibbons explored the Caribbean, crossed the Pacific, and cruised Southeast Asia aboard Tosca, working along the way as journalists and documenting their adventures for various travel and sailing publications, including Cruising World, Sail, Sailing, Cruising Helmsman, and Sailing World. Upon his return to land life, Darrell became the associate editor, then senior editor at Cruising World magazine, where he worked for five years. Before taking on the editor’s position at Practical Sailor, Darrell was the editor of Offshore magazine, a boating-lifestyle magazine serving the New England area. Darrell has won multiple awards from Boating Writer’s International, including the Monk Farnham award for editorial excellence. He holds a U.S. Coast Guard 100-ton Master license and has worked as a harbor pilot and skippered a variety of commercial charter boats.


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