Return to Australia

After a sojourn in Asia our yacht design Office is back to Australia. This overseas stay was a rewarding experience, as much from a personal standpoint, as professionally.

Perth Downtown seen from Matilda’s Bay.

During the early months of 2009, when we were absolutely acclimatized with our new country, my wife Astrid received an invitation to be the project engineer for a Brazilian company which was building two deep water drilling rigs in Singapore.
It was not a cool decision. B & G Yacht Design, the naval architecture firm we registered in Australia to develop nautical projects was getting close to be one year old and we were sorry to weaken our plans of expanding our presence in this new market.

We learned that it would be possible to operate the office from abroad, as long as our book-keeper kept up-dated our fiscal obligations with the Australian authorities. So we decided to leave for a new overseas adventure.
Singapore is quite interesting. Being a young city/state placed in a small island in the southern part of the Malaysian peninsula, it is possible to round the whole country along the borders by car in less than two hours. It is an industrial and commercial hub, besides being one of the most important ports in Asia. It is a country of hard workers, but, on the other hand, the standard of living is very high, being a good example for other developing countries on how a good administration and a community of hard workers can make the difference.

Singapore is a small island/state placed in the southern tip of the Malaysian peninsula, where in fifty years of independence was built one of the most solid economies in the whole world.

We stayed in Singapore for one and a half years. The construction of the first drilling rig was already half-completed when of our arrival and the second one was still to be started.
In mid-2010, when the first rig was almost completed, the same company started a negotiation of two drill ships with Samsung Shipyards, in South Korea, and once again Astrid was invited to be the site engineer manager.
This time the decision to go for the new challenge was simpler, since we had been operating B & G yacht Design from the distance without great difficulty, and we were becoming to be known for our lack of permanence in the same place for too long, and the name of our company was becoming better known. It was also a good chance to experiment the culture of a new country and its people. In September, 2010, we left Singapore to live in another island, Geoge, in South Korea.

Samsung Shipyard in Geoje Island, South Korea.

My routine changed somehow in South Korea. Besides working in our yacht design office, I also participated as a marine engineering adviser in the construction of the two drill ships to be built in Samsung Shipyards.
The shipyard is the third largest in Korea, with the potential of producing eighty-five ships per year when operating at its upper limit. It was a challenging experience for me to be involved from the very beginning with a type of work that has little to do with yacht designing.

The time it took to build the two ships was amazingly short, taking into account the complexity of the ships’ project: eighteen months from the phase of cutting the plates to launching, all that being done at the highest level of quality, as it was later confirmed by the contracting party, and the authorities from the contracting country, for the approval of the two ships, so they could start to operate with no delay.

Departure of the vessel Amaralina Star filmed by the crew of the sister ship Laguna Star at Samsung Shipyard.

Amaralina Star, one of the ships in which I participated in the construction when staying in Korea.

I received an invitation to accomplish an unusual and challenging task. By indication of our team mate Luis Manuel Pinho, who also belongs to the NGO Sea Shepherd’s Foundation, I had been asked if I could survey a ship which they were considering purchasing to be incorporated to their fleet. So far so good, the only detail being that the ship was in Japan and had belonged to the Japanese government, the very adversaries of the ONG, and if it was the slightest suspicion that I had any involvement with the Sea Shepherd Organization, any possibility of deal would be frozen in a blink. They instructed me to tell I had been hired by a broker who had been commissioned by a wealthy American who intended to buy the ship for adapting it into a leisure yacht. In the end everything worked out fine, the ship was in good conditions and I gave them the green light to proceed in the negotiations. The acquisition was accomplished and the ship is already operating for the cause of saving the whales from the Japanese whale-hunters. The cherry in the pie was that our collaborator Luis Manuel Pinho was appointed as captain of the ship. (The whole story of this deal will be told in another article)

Seifu Maru docked in Shimonoseki, Japan.

Once concluded the construction of the two drill ships, we once again were invited to stay in Korea for the construction of another ship, one more time commissioned by the same company that hired us. However we decided that the escape from our original plan had gone too far and that the time had come to return to Australia. We packed our stuffs in September 2012 and left Geoje Island bound for Perth, the place we had chosen to stay. In our way home we decided to spend a fortnight in Thailand, chartering a sailboat in Phucket. (This is going to be another article we will be publishing soon)

Sailing in the outskirts of Phucket Marina.

Arriving in Australia now it is time to set up shop again. It takes time but it is part of the fun.

New B & G Yacht Design Office in Perth, Western Australia.

Back to work, for sure we will have some time ahead with plenty of hurdles to overcome. But we have good news.
One of our most recent designs, the Kiribati 36, has already its second unit constructed, ready to be launched.
Another innovative project just introduced, the Pop Alu 32, has already two units under construction in two different countries.
The Pop 25, a recent introduction in the market, is already our blockbuster, most probably in function of its amazing easiness of construction. The class has already two boats close to be launched and several others advancing in their construction in a fast pace.

Another of our recent works, the Curruira 33, has already one boat close to be launched in Turkey.
It is also very rewarding to learn that our line of stock plans keep expanding staidly. It is routine to receive reports of boats from our design being launched in the most different places.

Pop 25, Curruíra 33 and Pop Alu 32, new designs we had introduced recently

About our new projects, we have two new designs in our agenda. The first one is a 21foot day-sailer, having its introduction scheduled for this April. The other is a 34 foot catamaran to be introduced in the first half of 2013.
If you follow our site regularly, you will probably find more action from now on, since we are totally focused in the yacht design branch of our activities.
If you want any special information, please contact me by the e-mail: info@yachtdesign.com.au. I will promptly reply you.

Pop Daysailer 21, the next B & G Yacht Design to be launched