“This was more of a new build than a refit. I think the term remanufactured describes it pretty well.”
So says Capt. Ted McCumber, who has been overseeing the transformation of the superyacht formerly known as Evergreen into Attessa IV. She’s one of a handful of yachts that have been rebuilt or refitted for Dennis Washington, the American whose passion for fixing up yachts is matched seemingly only by his acumen for fixing troubled companies.
Launched as a 302-footer (92.14 meters) in 1997 at Hayashikane in Japan, Evergreen was acquired by Washington in 2007. As he’s done with previous yacht projects, his Washington Yachting Group has been handling the construction at Vancouver Shipyards, which he also owns, with McCumber ensuring everything goes to plan.
The drawing at top gives a good idea of what she’ll look like when she’s completed in a few months’ time, measuring 332 feet LOA. As of this writing, Attessa IV is still encased in shrink wrap, expected to launch in October. She’s in such a state because “the boat was too big to fit in our building,” McCumber explains. “We had to scaffold and shrink wrap and keep it heated.” He points to this method of dealing with the elements as being the biggest challenge of what has definitely been a complex rebuild.
How complex? Compare Attessa IV’s look with the original lines of Evergreen, above. Given that Evergreen’s angular superstructure was entirely aluminum, the new design couldn’t be achieved in metal alone. Gavin Erickson, who’s been guiding the design and engineering, tells me that “significant parts” of the superstructure were removed and replaced with both aluminum and composite parts. In fact, “There remained a number of areas where we had to use the existing structure as a base and fabricate large composite parts directly onto the yacht,” he says. It wasn’t just attaching composite components to the metal with adhesives, he explains: “Large in-situ fabrications are actually laminated directly to the existing structure.” McCumber believes that this blending of composites to metal could very well be a first in the yachting industry.
The process was further complicated by the realities of mechanical stress, Erickson adds, and the different expansion rates of metal versus fiberglass. The Washington Yachting Group extensively researched how to avoid structural failure, of course. Through proper preparation of the aluminum plus selecting the most appropriate composite materials, the team is confident the structure will withstand both situations.
After Attessa IV hits the water in October, there’s still work to be done. The accommodations for 16 (including the owners) and 25 crew need to be fully outfitted, for example, as do the private cinema and spa area. The latter includes a beauty salon, massage room, steam room, sauna, and gym. McCumber says the skylounge will be “amazing,” featuring a blown glass chandelier created by the famed glass artist Dale Chihuly. Exterior areas will be expansive, all the better to enjoy the anticipated 25-knot top speed and continuous cruise speed of 18 knots. (Dialed back to 14 knots, Attessa IV should see a 5,000-nautical-mile range.) McCumber expects the Washington Yachting Group team will take a few months to complete everything.
Not that he’s in a rush to see Attessa IV depart, as he enjoys rebuilds. He actually prefers them over new construction, since “we have complete control and everyone in the yard works for us. You have a lot more influence on the finished product.” McCumber and Washington seem to be like-minded in that regard. The captain says his boss benefits from being able to “do whatever he wants” and “has a great eye for design, and he loves the project.”
“I think you will really like his latest vision,” McCumber tells me. I have a feeling I will indeed. Stay tuned.