Order Form Keel Sail Plan Especification Deck Layout Interior Layout Description

Polar 65

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1 - General

The Polar 65 is a swing keel metallic monohull specially designed for high latitude sailing.
This design is the development of other yachts we had produced before employing swing keels. With 20 m length over all, the boat is large enough to allow bringing the keel case up to the deck level without loosing significant interior space. This is a tremendous help in attaining a deep draught with the keel down, a very important factor regarding stability and pointing ability. There is an increasing demand for boats of this type among charter and expedition skippers and cruising people who prefer the solitude of the remote areas of the planet. For that purpose, a swing keel yacht must be an overbuilt sailing machine, taking into account the harsh conditions encountered in the high latitudes and the absence of adequate facilities for repairs. Considering these factors and the importance of an easy grounding operation, we provided the design with two skegs, with apertures for the propellers leading to twin rudders, this way obtaining better manoeuvring ability, a stable base for grounding and extra protection for rudders and propellers. The choice for two auxiliaries fitted as a glove in this context, once under sail or power the boat is under control with the tip of the fingers. The twin rudders, twin propellers configuration is a step ahead in swing keel yachts and we are convinced that this arrangement will become a trend from now on among these boats.

2 - Interior Layout

The Polar 65 is intended to accommodate up to fourteen persons for extended periods. The keel case is placed at mid ships and for that reason the main saloon is shifted to the after quarters. This is the favourite arrangement among polar yacht owners. The large volume afforded when the design provides beamy quarters gives an unobstructed saloon, so spacious that can accommodate the whole crew plus guests. The U-shape sofa that surrounds the aft side of the saloon is served by two tables, a convenient arrangement once only one of these tables may be employed when short handed, or all seats may be occupied when parties are occurring. Frequently polar yachts are chartered by expedition parties or by documentary producers. For that matter, the Polar 65 reserves a noble place at the starboard side of the saloon for an ample communication centre or working area. Symmetrically, at port side is located the galley with freezer, refrigerator, two sinks and a four burner stove with oven. Besides there is a profusion of lockers for pantry and kitchen appliances to be stored. The floor at the working area is protected by a rail where the cook can lean his back against it, without risk of falling to leeward in case the two hands are required for the pots. Separating the galley from the study, there is the engine room with the pilothouse above it. The access for the engine room is by a hatch placed at the centre of the aft wall. To port there is a ladder to the pilothouse. This is a 360º visibility windowed compartment reserved for navigation and inside steering. A pilot settee berth provides a second social ambience for a small party. Talking to charter skippers, they pointed the importance of a second small resting area where a crew tired of all the fuss generated at the main saloon can find a quieter place to stay. At the aft wall of the pilothouse is located the wet suit locker. This is a good place for this essential equipment once it avoids bringing water down below, besides being a handy place to dress before leaving the warmth of the heated interior. The companionway is placed at starboard and is shut by means of a deck type commercial hatch installed at a 45º angle fore and aft. On top of this hatch is built a solid dodger frame with laminated glass windows all over to spare the crew from spray when getting out and also to protect the pilot house from solid water going down below. At each side of the engine room there are two corridors that give access to the living quarters located at both sides of the keel case. The stock plan considers the need to accommodate a large crew, and to fulfil this purpose, we designed a family cabin at port side with no less than five bunks, plus a working desk with stools. In front is the owner's "en suite" stateroom with two accesses, one by way of the starboard corridor and the second one provided by a door that leads to the large portside cabin. To starboard we designed two cabins with two berths each plus two berths for a professional crew, if wished. Another option is to build a workbench with vise in place of the professional crew accommodation
The two main heads are forward to each side of the anchor chain well and there is a third social head next to the communication centre. This is the most convenient position for a toilet, once it's close to the centre of the boat.
In front of the two main heads is the foc`s`le, a watertight compartment accessible only from the deck. A steep ladder gives access to this ample compartment where it can be stored spare sails, warps, chandlery, etc. A second generator, as well as a desalinator may also be installed there. A bow thruster is a recommended accessory. In front of the foc`s`le there is a collision bulkhead, with a watertight inspection port.
This interior arrangement is by no means a rigid one, except for keel case and structural bulkheads, and there is plenty of margin for customising the layout.

3 - Deck layout

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The Polar 65 is a flush deck ketch with a pilothouse. Abaft the fore mast at centreline is located the cover for the swing keel case slot. At that cover there is a laminated glass port that permits the visual inspection of the lifting operation from the deck level. The fore deck, in front of the main mast, is a clean working area. The bollard, mid and fore stay chain plates and the electric windlass are fitted there. An 800 mm x 800 hatch gives the only access to the watertight foc´s´le. If a rigid bottom inflatable is to be carried aboard, the fore deck is the best place to stow it. Columns support main and mizzenmasts so there is no need to worry about leakages at mast carlings. At each side of the main mast are placed backrests, a must in such a wide deck. The foresail fairlead tracks are located at both sides of the keel case slot. Once the fore sails, except for a gennaker, aren't overlapping, the other pair of shroud chain plates is placed close to the topsides. Abaft the keel case it's placed the windowed pilothouse with the mainsail traveller and main sail and mizzen sheet controls leading to the afterside of the coachroof.
The cockpit is surrounded by a coaming except at the aft centre portion, which is open to the boarding platform, allowing water to drain out and giving a comfortable access to the boat. The outside steering wheel is placed to port at the fore side of the cockpit.
The boat is provided with hatches for the various compartments as well as cowl ventilators coupled with dorade boxes.

4 - Sail plan and rigging

The Polar 65 is a cutter-rigged ketch. The emphasis of the design was focused in functionality and robustness. According to the opinion of the most experienced skippers that operate in Austral waters, double forestays, each one with its furler is the most practical way to handle fore sails. The heavy weather jib is hooked to the mid stay instead of employing a furler. We opted for suppressing runners, bringing more simplicity to the manoeuvres, and in its place we installed two permanent stays parallel to the aft lower shrouds. The ideal was to avoid swept back spreaders, this way keeping the main sail away from their tips. Once there are no overlapping foresails, shrouds chain plates are located close to the topsides saving the mast from excessive compression.
The mainsail has a raised tack and its traveller and sheet control are placed on top of the pilothouse coachroof. The main mast is back stayed by two independent wires. The mizzenmast has its own stays and profiting from the long stern scoop it's served by two permanent backstays. Two other permanent fore stays and a jumper complete the mizzen mast support fore and aft. The mizzen sheet is anchored to a pad eye on the cockpit floor and the control is from the pilothouses coach roof. On ocean crossings, as is the case with all ketches, a mizzen staysail may be employed, enriching the pleasure of sailing considerably.

5 - The Pivoting keel

Swing keel yachts are being employed successfully in the southern ocean and elsewhere. Being a relatively new trend in yacht design, it required some perfectioning since its introduction in order to attain unquestionable reliability. The large swing keel yachts normally operate in areas where the sailing conditions are the most severe as absolute confidence in the system employed is fundamental.
The Polar 65 keel is as efficient as the fixed fins found in modern cruising boats. We designed a steel case with an adequate hydrofoil shape with lead poured inside. The slot where it retrieves is shut when the keel is down by a beam that covers the root of the keel and extends to the after end of the slot. At the front of this beam is fixed the pivoting pin and at the rear end is attached the lifting plate. The arch that the after end describes when the keel is hoisted is matched with a ratchet that holds the ballast at any position. This is a safety device that brings tranquillity when operating in remote regions under extremely rough conditions. Stability is enhanced by internal ballast.

6 - Propulsion and steering

The Polar 65 is propelled by two 100 hp diesel auxiliaries. The shaft lines run inside skegs that are joined join to the twin rudders, with apertures for the propellers. As these boats are intended to operate in regions where pack ice is a possibility we opted for "keel" cooling to refrigerate the engines as well as the generator. For that purpose we used the skeg plates as heat exchangers, a very practical solution, considering the otherwise lost space inside those boxes. The aperture creates the opportunity to locate vertical skegs in front of the rudderstocks, for lighter steering ability.
The two rudders are rectangular in shape and both of them working in tandem provide more steering control than a larger single one, would do a very important feature regarding sailing in rough sea conditions. With its two steering wheels the boat has hydraulic and wire transmission one being the back up of the other.

7 - The Birth of a Class

The Polar 65 was initially an order for a custom design from the Ukrainian, naturalised Brazilian navigator, Aleixo Belov. A civil engineer by trade, Aleixo is probably the only person who ever went three times consecutively around the world single-handed aboard a sailing yacht. His "Tres Marias", a 36 foot fibreglass cutter, served his purposes perfectly well when sailing in tropical waters. After the third voyage he started considering building a go anywhere yacht that he could sail together with family and friends or going single-handed when desired. He came to our office with sketches of the boat he had in mind, after visiting a common friend, Oleg Belly, who operated faultlessly a swing keel yacht of about the same size as the Polar 65 for more than ten years in Antarctic and Arctic waters. Oleg grew a solid reputation among charter skippers for his general knowledge of the subject. Being a physicist and a skilled boat builder, he built his sixty three feet long Kotic with the only help of two welders at a country town in Brazil, far from the facilities of larger centres, in the surprising short time of one year. The concluded boat went straight from the port of launching to the Southern Ocean where Oleg spent the first season in a three months charter to Antarctica. Oleg contributed with excellent ideas in some of the decisions concerning the project and Aleixo, an experienced boat builder himself also had good contributions in the development of the design.
When we received the order for the commissioning of the design it was established that the design would be a stock plan and a property of Roberto Barros Yacht Design.
By our side we also gathered important experience in designing polar yachts
Our first commitment regarding this type of challenge was the yacht Paratii, co-designed by our office for the yachtsman Amyr Klink, who accomplished single handed the circumnavigation of the Antarctic continent aboard his yacht. For that feat the Royal Cruising Club of England awarded him the Tillman Prize, when Paratii was considered one of the five best polar yachts designed to that date. Looking forward to the future we are proud to introduce this design to the strict community of world cruising sailors who want a boat of unlimited scope of usage. Aleixo soon will be starting the construction of his "Fraternidade", (from the Portuguese word for fraternity") at his company, Belov Engineering (eng@belov.com.br). As he is a hard worker it isn't far from the day when the first Polar 65 will be sailing.