DIAB Divinycell HP sailing catamaran

Yachting Developments strikes the right balance with Diab

From its 1700 m2 production sheds in Auckland, New Zealand, Yachting Developments has delivered a long series of stunning vessels. Among the latest is the Quintessential, a 30 m superyacht whose unique design challenges were solved with different composites based on Diab materials.

Yachting Developments is an award-winning boatyard with a passionate staff and more than seventy individual clients. Using a blend of modern technology and traditional boatbuilding skills, the yard has turned out not only custom-designed vessels of the highest standard, but also refits of classic yachts such as the iconic J-class sloop Endeavour.

While adept with timber and metal, Yachting Developments’ true expertise lies in composite materials. Fiberglass, E-glass, S-glass, carbon fiber, Kevlar and hybrid fibers are all in frequent use at the yard, along with cores from Diab, with whom Yachting Developments has cooperated for more than ten years. Choosing the right materials is always a matter of balancing specifications, but yard build YD66, otherwise known as the Quintessential, raised particular challenges.

The Quintessential, which was delivered to its owner and embarked on its maiden voyage in May 2012, is a performance-cruising sailing catamaran with a respectable 10-12 knot average speed under power. In addition, it is one of the largest composite sailing catamarans in the world. Drawn up by Warwick Yacht Design, it measures 30 m in length and an incredible 15 m in beam.

Despite its remarkable size, the Quintessential’s owner wanted the yacht to have a weight-conscious design – without exchanging E-glass for 100% carbon-fiber reinforcement. To achieve this, every effort was taken to make optimal use of the high strength-to-weight properties of sandwich construction. Carbon fiber was used only where its ultra-light properties made it cost efficient, such as in long deck beams or the sparsely supported hardtop, which extends aft over the Quintessential’s ample cockpit. Outside of these high-stress areas, E-glass was the material of choice.

No matter what the reinforcements, Divinycell H and HP core materials from Diab were used throughout the Quintessential, from the hull to the deck and its bulkheads. This is perhaps little surprise, since Yachting Developments makes extensive use of Divinycell in many of its vessels. Divinycell HP is especially useful for the painted topsides requested by most customers, because it can handle a lifetime at 80°C and skin temperatures in excess of 100°C while retaining its outstanding cosmetic and structural properties.

Through the use of quality materials like Divinycell, Yachting Developments can be sure that the Quintessential will deliver on its owner’s expectations for the long term. And with a trusted core specialist in the form of Diab, the yard can be confident of meeting tomorrow’s new challenges. 


Louise Eriksson Jacka
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