An interview with her naval architects
After surfing almost every wave that hit Australia, the two Aussie brothers and best friends Terry and Jake are ready for the adventure of their lifetime: the epic surf trip they have talked about since childhood which will take them from California to Maine via route 7 of the North West Passage. Pim Dijksman, designer at Vripack, tells the story.
Pim, the brothers approached you after learning that you designed more yachts than anyone else that succeeded in safely passing one of the toughest passages on earth. How did you creatively connected and got the ideas on paper?
Well, from day one we hit it off on all levels with the family particularly because of their life time dream of making this remarkable trip purely for surfing where no man surfed before. The way they described their lives and how this dream fits in... wow, simply wow. After that things actually went very natural and pure. We sat down together right on the studio floor in the midst of the action and started asking questions, giving answers, ripping pictures from magazines, searching the web, cutting textiles, leathers, stick post its and simply have loads and loads of fun.
That indeed sounds like a ball. How do you make sure that from all this an actual buildable yacht emerges that still meets their dreams?
There are two core values to Vripack's design process. First of all our approach is unique in the way that we view any project as a whole and not as a part of something. Right from the beginning, this holistic approach brings together the designer, naval architect and also engineers for structure and systems. For us it is like we are actually creating the yacht for the first time. The build should be the perfect second execution of our first creation. Just as important is our second principle: the user always comes first. Anything and everything we create is fully human centered. Nothing else. We call this whole process Vrithinking.
Vrithinking haha, why not indeed. Okay, give me one example what this Vrithinking brought to the yacht.
Well, the ship is their home and carrier enabling them to go to places where other means of transport can't come. This obviously requires a very specific design. For both the family as well as the crew that work on board. By starting with examining the actual route they will sail we ended up with her operational profile. That profile clearly showed the need to sail at very low speeds preferably without noise. For instance in the midst of the night slipping out of port to catch the first waves early morning, as well as at 20 knots. This in turn inspired our engineers to come up with a hybrid drive train that allows four different sailing modes from full electric to pure diesel to diesel-electric. Hybrid is a good example of a technical solution purely centered around the user and no-one else.
I could talk about this for hours but surfs up. What's the coolest thing about this ultimate surf boat everyone should know about?
'Point Break' is just packed with cool stuff for the brothers, their kids and dogs. All kind of boards and kites also snow and skate boards have been made available! What comes to mind is the family orientated layout we created which allows for good old get-togethers and please-let-me-read-book times. But perhaps the coolest feature is what the naval architects placed all the way at the back: a water ballast wing tank. When there is no wind, the captain can put her in full speed diesel-electric mode and fill up this tank which will sink the stern creating serious waves so they can surf behind the boat. Big smile.
Given the private nature of luxury yacht design some names and identifying details have been changed by Vripack to protect the privacy of individuals.