The X-Yacht people in Denmark are on a roll. They're putting out an extended series of very fast boats, the newest of which is this 38-footer from the board of Niels Jeppesen. It provides an interesting contrast to the Carroll 12-meter, amplified by the fact that this design is also aimed at a one-design class. Despite its mellow appearance, the IMX-38 took second in its class at Key West Race Week and took first in class and first IMX overall at the SORCs.
The marketing of the IMX-38 is very similar to that of the Carroll boat, stressing the values of one-design racing and combining the features of the hottest IMS boats into a more all-purpose package.
The hull shapes, however, are very different. Note the deep forefoot of the IMX, with the knuckle well below the DWL. The 38 weighs 11,800 pounds — 1,800 pounds more than the Carroll — for a D/L of 173. This is reflected in the additional rocker that the profile of the 38 shows. Probably the biggest difference in overall design proportions of the two boats is the deck plan view. Note how full and gentle the shape of the 38 is while the Carroll is a foot narrower and more radical in its fineness forward. The transom of the Carroll shows a wide and flattened run while, due to the additional rocker, the IMX-38 has a rounder and deeper transom reflecting the steeper angle of the run. The standard draft model of the 38 draws 6 feet 11 inches. The keel has a cast-iron top section and a lead lower section.
The deck of the 38 shows a cockpit that stops short of the transom. There are molded-in helmsman buckets notched into the sides of the cockpit to keep the helmsman secure. The big wheel is recessed into the cockpit sole. Tiller steering is optional and saves about 25 pounds. A swim step is molded into the transom.
You wouldn't expect luxurious accommodations from this type of boat, and the 38 won't surprise you in that area. The layout is straightforward with a small galley forward and a large head that stretches across the boat. The photos show this interior to be beautifully detailed and artfully styled. It may not be plush, but it does look comfy.
Jeppesen has chosen a masthead rig for the 38. This is a far simpler rig to operate than a big fractional rig. The spar section was designed to be forgivingly stiff. There are many clever design details in this rig that are aimed at making this boat one that comes in an initially refined state. The triple-spreader rig has slightly swept-back spreaders. Discontinuous rod rigging is standard; all running rigging is Spectra, with the exception of the pole downhaul.
One-design classes provide the best racing, but it is not so easy to get a one-design class started. You need numbers to start your own, and in order to get numbers you need a boat that is outstanding and capable of attracting sailors. The IMX-38 is a wonderful, sexy-looking boat with sweeping lines and the promise of plenty of boat speed.
A modern racer that can easily accommodate extended cruising.
|Sail Area||755.7 sq. ft.;|
|Auxiliary||28-horsepower Volvo 2003 diesel;|
This story originally appeared in Sailing Magazine, and is republished here by permission. Subscribe to Sailing.