Here's a beauty from Niels Helleberg, who heads up the John G. Alden design firm. The new boat will be built by Alden Yachts in Portsmouth and is a follow-up on their 50/54 and 46/50 series. Note that the length change is a function of the transom style chosen. These boats will be built on a semi-custom basis so that the drawings show a range of proposed options. Final details will rely upon owner requirements.

The Alden 43/45 series.

The Alden 43/45 series.

With a waterline of 34 feet 6 inches, this design falls into a very easily sailed size range. This waterline coupled with 23,000 pounds gives the volume required for a comfortable layout for two couples with the speed and stability for some ambitious cruises. Look at layout options. Note that the one item common to each is the engine box which forms part of the galley counter area. I like layout C with its pilotberths and layout B with its single head and larger galley. You can mix and match to come up with your own ideal layout.

Choosing the transom is a different question. Here you can rely on your sense of aesthetics. Cockpit size stays the same. The only difference is in how the overhang is treated. One advantage of the traditional stern is that it gives you a few extra feet of deck space aft of the cockpit. The disadvantage is that you will have more weight aft along with additional LOA that isn't contributing to sailing length. I like the traditional stern best. It's more graceful and draws out the sheerline nicely.

The hull form of this sloop shows beautiful, rounded sections for low wetted surface. The BWL and beam at the stern is moderate. The transom is an attractive shape. Hull lines were developed with the aid of a performance prediction program to ensure speed.

The focal point of this hull is the keel option. You can have either a deep draft fin or a fin/bulb shoal keel. These keels can be interchanged at the yard in two hours with all work done on the exterior. This would theoretically allow an owner to change keels depending upon his cruising destination. Draft with the fin and bulb option is 5 feet 9 inches with a very low VCG. The D/L of the boat with the deep fin is 250. With the fin/bulb, the displacement increases by 1,000 pounds, bringing the D/L up to 261.

Rig options include a tall, triple-spreader rig for IMS racing or a shorter, double spreader rig for mom and pop cruising. Both rigs us inline lowers with a babystay. The mainsheet traveler is well forward to keep it out of the cockpit. Note the short foretriangle to keep the headsails small.

Niels Helleberg and the Alden group has given us some wonderful looking yachts over the years. Their design work captures classic East Coast proportions and the true definition of sailing yacht.

Boat Specifications

LOA43'2" - 44'10"
Draft fin7'5"
Draft shoal5'9"
Ballast fin10000 lbs.
Ballast shoal11000 lbs.
Sail Area915 sq. ft.
SA/D fin18.10
SA/D shoal17.59
D/L shoal261
Auxiliary Westerbeke63B
Fuel50 gals.
Water100 gals.


SAILINGlogo-115This story originally appeared in Sailing Magazine, and is republished here by permission. Subscribe to Sailing.