Plan B

International One Metre Racing Yacht



Peter Burford Builder


Plan B is the culmination of more than three years of development, sailing with the very competitive Paradise Radio Yacht Club at Emerald Lakes and at regional events in Queensland, Australia.  We are fortunate with our climate, in being able to sail throughout the year in varied conditions and in a full range of wind strengths.  We Australians enjoy IOM competition at an elite international standard.  It's a demanding field and our yachts must meet the challenge. 

This Plan B design is the third version of the concept, each development requiring a complete set of hull moulds.  Twelve yachts were built and evaluated before Plan B was first offered for sale.  Refinement continues, with Plan B yachts now competing in local, regional and national regattas.  

This photograph shows one prototype, # 128, racing at the Eddie Cowell Regatta, Kawana.

Plan B is a yacht designed to win races and events.  It is simple, strong, reliable and easily maintained.

Behind the clean appearance is a sophistication of thought, design and construction not readily apparent.  There are features like an adjustable, ball-ended shaft to centralise the rudder with the Tx trim at 0; mast fittings canted to tighten the leech as the mainsail is eased; wire topping lifts; white foils remain cooler in the sun; neat and accessible wiring; adjustable seal in the rudder bearing; adjustable mainsheet post within the central spine, moulded bow buffer and more.

The easily driven, chined hull has a long, fine entry to elliptical sections in front of the keel and a shallow vee aft into a straight run at the rudder.

It floats bow-high at rest and uses the dynamic lift of the forward sections together with Bernoulli Effect from the aft sections to maintain this attitude downwind at speed.  The fine entry minimises 'tripping' and burying the bow.

When heeled, the hull presents a straight run with narrow cross sections.

The concave, raised fore-deck closely follows the jib-boom and positions the mast ram for effective mast control.

There is a large central hatch, recessed to be flush with the deck, for ventilation and access to the rudder servo, receiver, battery, switch, wiring and corrector weight.  This hatch gives adequate ventilation, without the need to remove the rear deck patch.  The layout is convenient and practical. 

If needed, the flush, deck mounted RMG switch can be circumvented by simply exchanging the installed XT-60 plugs.   The waterproof Hitec HS-646 WP, precisely self-centering rudder servo and the RMG 290 EF winch can be removed and changed through the main hatch, without removing the rear deck patch. 

The rudder shaft, stainless steel tiller and also the winch are readily accessed through the rear deck opening, covered by the rear deck patch.  One flat, easily applied deck patch only, that seldom needs removal.

The winch, rudder servo, battery and corrector weight are placed to suit the hull displacement; alongside and behind the keel.

Above-deck RMG 32 mm. self-tensioning winch drum and lines give quick and easy access without sheet openings to allow water ingress.  Sheets, winch drum and lines can be adjusted and changed from outside the hull.  The winch drum is shielded with a smooth, rounded cover.  This drum and the Hales deck mounted, ball-raced deck blocks can be readily flushed.

The keel is an example of form following function and experience.  A high aspect NACA 0009 section resists stalling when the yacht heels quickly: sheeting in at starts and at sudden gusts.  It has a rectangular profile for minimum surface area with maximum beam and torsional stiffness. 

The ballast is a low drag lamina-flow profile with circular section.  

The 'Rambler' rudder profile with tubercles allows an increased angle of incidence before stalling: to improve steering and minimise drag.  The alternative, deeper,  conventional blade rudder possibly assists 'parking' the yacht at the starts.  To minimise cavitation, both rudders are positioned a distance in from the transom.

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Ballast centre-of-gravity is at a calculated measurement forward of the keel null point, to give the keel slight wash-out under heeled load.

Plan B was drawn using engineering CAD.

Parameters were calculated and extensively checked before construction.

CAD enabled, for instance, the displacement distribution, wetted surface area and prismatic coefficient to be ascertained and optimised at incremental angles of heel.  The result is a well balanced yacht that can be readily trimmed to 'hands-off' sailing.

Plan B is an attractive yacht, both on and off the water.

"Everyone needs a Plan B"