High performance power and sail boats -German Boat Builder
Alwoplast S.A. is a German managed, Chilean based company, situated at the entrance of the roaring forties.
We have earned the respect of both the local and international yachting fraternity, thanks to our proven track record over 20 years.
The boatyard is in the only navigable river in Chile, which provides a sheltered and safe environment.
There is no shortage of mainstream production vessels on the market and we are not in competition with the marine production builders.
Our objective is to produce the very finest custom built multihulls, or the occasional monohull up to 100ft that delivers exceptional performance.
Our Chris White designed Atlantic 57's currently under construction are a fine sample of our interpretation of highest quality standards of professionalism, cooperation and integrity throughout all aspects of construction. Learn more...
- Navtec 38 Ft
- Crowther 40 Ft
- Crowther 42 Ft
- Crowther 44 Ft
Ronald Klingenberg/Production Manager
Ricardo Perez/Head of Production(Naval Engineer)
Mauricio Vidal/Head of Engineering(Naval Engineer)
Alwoplast S.A. Catamaran Manufacturer | Publications
"FIORDOS DEL SUR"
First Catamaran Tourist Ferry in the Chilean Patagonian Channels
Built by ALWOPLAST S.A.
- Chile By Alex Wopper
published The Power of Multihulls - Fall 2005
See full text below, or click on images to view actual article.
a high-speed ferry for the notoriously rough Patagonian channels in the south of Chile. Because of the constantly increasing flow of international tourists into that overwhelming and exuberant wild and untouched nature, maritime excursions, as the only means of transport in that area, became of utmost importance. Southern Chile is considered as one of the stormiest areas on the globe and offering a safe and efficient water-borne transport system isachallenging undertaking. Especially because of the required high speed if you plan to see places in a vast and generous channel landscape plagued with hurricane-force williwaws.
Because of fhe clear performance improvementon the 50-ff high-speed displacement catamaran "Molly," after installation of a set of foils designed by Profes- sor Hoppe of F. A.S.T.cc in South Africa, the decision was made to commission Prof. Hoppe for a completely new design for the private high-speed cruiser mar- ket. We ended up with a 45-foot asymmetric, jet-driven planing hull, especially developed for a tandem foil system with emphasis on seakeeping and a projected sprint speed of 50 knots. The first hull shell was about to be finished when a Chilean hotel group approached us regarding Austro Hotels and ALWOPLAST S.A. came to an agreement, and the basic design concept had to be adapted fo the new require- ments.Seakeepingand seaworthiness were still a very high priority, but the design speed was reduced to 35 knots for passenger comfort. F. A.S.T.cc provided the hull lines and hydrodynamic calculations, including foil design. ALWOPLAST S.A.. the vessel's builder, alsoconducted the overall concept, styling and interior design, plus systems layout. Navtec Chile Ltda. did the complete structural design, finite element analysis and computational fluid dynamics studies.
The new hull particulars for the 60-passenger cat are now: LOA - 54 ft. BOA - 16.8 ft, Draft 3.3 ft. Displ. fully loaded - 48500 lbs. Divinycell foam-core construction with Vectorply stitched multiaxial fabrics and BASF Vinylester resins. Two Cummins QSM-11 with 580 hp each directly coupled toHamilton HJ362 jets. "FIORDOS DEL SUR" based in Puerto Natales, Chile 51 °44" South, will be the first power mullihull ferry in the Chilean Patagonian channels and is considered as a significant milestone in the development of the tourist industry in that part of the world. Launching was in July and the first sea-trials in the roaring forties were conducted in August. The same basic hull concept , but with a completely custom-built superstructure, will be available as a private high-speed cruiser or game fisher.
Alwoplast LTDA Valdivia, Chili Alex Wopper
is Celebrating its 20th Birthday
Alwoplast in MULTIHUU-S Magazine | January/February 2007
As if to elevate the celebratory moment... Alwoplast S.A. (Chile) also just received ISO 9001:2000 certification, something only very few yards have and the entire staff is proud of that achievement! The Gcrmanischer Lloyd certifies that Alwoplast has estab- lished and maintains a Quality Management System relevant for compound material craft design, engineering and manufacture of up to 80 feet, including its me- chanical, electrical, electronic and navigation equipment, accommodations and interior com- pletions and manufacturing and associated facilities. Certificate No. CS-4017 HH. Beyond the many happy owners of sail and power multihulls already plying the worldwide seas there are nine catamarans on the premises right now, at different stages of completion. One almost ready for delivery is a 47- foot sailing catamaran for a US client with the world's first com- plete OSSA hybrid diesel electric propulsion system, based on two 25kw gensets and twin electric drive motors. All appliances run on 220V DC. Also almost ready for delivery is a brand-new 50-foot cruising sail cat for Patagonia.
Approximately two years ago, Alwoplast stopped building sail- ing cats and dedicated all its efforts toward power cats, com- mercial and private one-offs, but as things tend to go in cycles, the company is back to sail cats, where its founder and CEO Alex Wopper started 20 years ago. "We are even building nega- tive hull molds for a Chris White - Atlantic 57. The first one is sold to a client from Cali- fornia (will be our third sail cat in CA). That's all epoxy vacuum bagged with stitched fabrics and about 6000 feet of carbon units. A real lightweight, high-performance round-the-world cruiser!" was Wopper's proud statement. However, power cats have not been forsaken, there is a superb
60-foot one-off high-speed dis- placement one Cayman flag ready for delivery at Wopper's docks.
It is absolutely state-of-the-art equipped and ready to cruise all oceans on the globe.
Trawler Kinds Of Cats
Located in Chile, Alwoplast builds custom multihulls, both sail and power. It focuses not on competition, but on the customer. The company is a member of ABYC and has a highly skilled group of German- managed engineers, project managers and craftsmen. Alwoplast builds multihulls in the range of 35 to 80 feet and in models ranging from a ferry-like Sea Bus to a family-oriented cruising cat. One of the most recent power cats built has been described as a "trawler cat" based on her performance, range and sea-keeping ability. This boat made a great debut at the 2002 United States Powerboat Show in Annapolis, Maryland, and seems to have influenced other Alwoplast trawler cat designs.
A 65-foot model under development is being designed specifically as a long- range trawler catamaran. With the ability to carry 3,160 gallons of fuel and cruise between 12 and 15 knots, this catamaran is easily comparable to an offshore-going trawler. Bill and Shari Henderson of Evergreen, Colorado, are eagerly awaiting the delivery of their 50-foot sport cruiser catamaran and follow her progress via email. By the time you read this, they will be on board their new boat, on which they plan to spend winters in Florida and summers cruising up north. The Hendersons were more than pleased with Alwoplast in that they were able to truly customize their boat from the hulls up. For the Hendersons, it was important that the two of them could handle the boat alone and that they could spend 6 to 7 months a year on board. They also wanted to be able to walk into their engine rooms and get to all sides of the engines. They helped design their boat, and ultimately, they got just what they wanted.
According to Alex Wopper of Alwoplast, the boat handled extremely well in high winds and surf off the coast of Chile. Added buoyancy from the bulbous bows, as well as larger rudders, allowed for easy compensation of steering resistance. Cruising at 15 knots, the delivery crew experienced a variety of weather conditions and had only good things to say about the boat's performance. They also found that the boat was quiet, with no vibration under way, and that the engine's placement under the cockpit rcduccs noise and significantly minimizes the level of heat transfer to the interior.
With a comfortable and spacious galley, ample saloon room (thanks to a 20-foot beam), and high-quality engine-room gear, this boat was designed for offshore cruising, but it can just as easily hop from island to island off the coast of Florida. It will all depend on the cruising desires of the Hendersons, but the custom-building techniques and Alwoplast's attention to detail helped to guarantee their cruising goals would be met.
published: PASSAGEMAKER Mar/Apr 2005
a Lovely Story about
Delivery of "Dalilah Sue" - 57 ft trawler catamaran from the Roaring 40's up to Miami- Beach Marina
Delivery of Dalilah Sue From the Roaring 40's up to Miami
published: Winter 2005 - The Power of MULTIHULLS Magaine
Finally the rwd sea buoy came into sight and the sensation of riding a wild mustang for the last 30 hours also came to an end. The last 495 nm from Isla Mujcres, Mexico to Miami was a beating, straight into the wind and the Gulf Stream, against 25 knots of prevailing trade winds, that can produce a very confused sea and Dalilah Sue had no troubles fitting into that nasty wave pattern. Being honest, I guess the fatigued crew had more troubles to adapt to the conditions than the catamaran, because DS took the waves like a minor discomfort. Anyway, we were more than happy to power up into the channel. Flagler Island to port, a last VHF call with an US Coast Guard officer and Miami Beach Marina, the agreed meeting point was ahead of us.
What a satisfying moment! Shari and Bill, the happy owners standing on the pier and
waving enthusiastically, and here we were. At 08 00 a.m.. exactly as promised after a 5000-nm-long delivery trip from its birthplace in Valdivia/Chile, 40° Fat. South in the Pacific, all the way up north to Miami. What a compensation for all the suffering and efforts put into thai trip. The joyful eyes and the warm hug we received made us forget the last four weeks and a deep feeling of accomplishment settled into us. Mission successfully completed! What made us really proud was the fact that after a thorough wash-down, the custom-built 50ft powerhouse was absolutely ready for more adventures. After having cleared all arrival procedures, we lired up the two trustworthy caterpillars and moved DS to her final destination in Ft. Lauderdale. What a welcome difference to the rough open ocean passages during the last month. Traveling the ICW at a leisurely pace, but... let's start from the beginning.
Alwoplast S. A.
hadavery seaworthy and proven 57 ft trawler catamaran, Barbara Mae at the 2002 Annapolis Powerboat Show and her owners Barbara and Hob made ex- actly the same trip from the building yard hometotheUS (see Power of MULTIHULLS Mag Vol.2 No.3). For them, the 8000 nm trip (in total) up to Massachusetts was the trip of their lifetime and the purpose was to enjoy and see places, not just a plain delivery trip on a tight schedule. Shari and Bill met BM's owners at the show, talked about their building experi- ence and asa result, signed a contract with the ya rd for a not her serious one-off trawler catamaran (see POM, Spring '03 issue).
After the cat was finished, Alwoplast had to face the task of delivery because the owners couldn't do it due to time constraints. Costs and logistics for shipping the vessel as deck freight were prohibitive, and inquiries regarding profes- sional delivery crews proved fruitless. We were faced with the challenge of a brand-new vessel, during winter in the Southern Hemisphere, espe- cially since the boatyard is located at the entrance to the "roaring 40s" and it was still a very active hurricane season in the Caribbean. We had a big ad vant age. We knew the eat very well and what kind of product we deliver. After building only catamarans for over 15 years with a very personal, diligent and pro- fessional staff, we knew we could handle what surprises Mother Nature had to offer and we fell prepared to take on the task. Of course, we were also very keen to get the feedback of a one-month trip aboard one of our own constructions and as the three of us considered ourselves seasoned sailors withacombined experience of about 150.000 tun. we accepted the challenge. Because of nasty latewinter weather with lots of northerly storms, we had to delay departure several times. We expected that the approaching spring weather would bring the trustworthy high-pressure system in the South Pacific more to the south. That system is normally nourished by cold air coming up from the Antarctic and that means reliable southerly winds along the Chilean coast. That truth turns into a nerve-wracking one for the sailors trying to come down from Panama, because they have to beat into constant 20+ knots of southerly winds. But, as the book "Ocean Passages of the World" says on its lirst page, "the prevailing wind is the wind in your nose" and that is where we started.
Buoy weather reported 25knots westerly windsand seas from 14-17 feet. DS did 15 knots at 2200 rptn with quite some banging on the underwing. Waves were very confused because of the still active wind/seas from the dying southerly wind and that lured us out of the harbor. But we couldn't slow down because of an approaching front and the building northerly sea was not a good sign at all. We had to try to maintain speed and gel under the protective cover of the high pressure system farther north with the much desired southerlies. We all paid our tribute to Neptune and the developing conditions were not really supportive to our efforts. The first night out at sea could be best described as confidence building, and provided avery positive attitude towards ouradaptation process and growing sea legs again. The following sunrise rewarded us with more and more southerly windsand it looked as though the weather gods were on our side. From the same direction, a steady 25 knots of wind and building seas provided us with some thrilling surfs and the log often showed 25-26 knots with only 2000 rpm. We agreed that a really seagoing cat should have solid footrestson the dashboard, be- cause that was the only way to brace ourselves into the captain's chair with our legs against the instrument panel. There was no need for a windshield washer as the breaking waves were doing the job. but the windshield wipers were in constant use. The engine start keys were definitely close to the wiper switches and it took a lot of concentration and acrobatic effort to hit the right buttons.
Whenever a following sea picked lis up, DS lifted her sterns, her foredeek almost down to water level, and the speedometer warned us of another building acceleration. Our bulbous bows made us feel very comfortable and the extra buoyancy around the nose was very much appreciated. Every couple of minutes the spec- tacle repeated: sterns up, nose down, riding the wave, reaching 10 knots above average speed and then, when the wave collapsed, there was an enormous hole in front of the boat. Looked as though somebody pulled the plug and there was no more water! Who lalks about flipping catamarans side- ways? It takes good judgement and the right speed to stay on top of things. Shooting over waves like that or losing steering could be a very bad experience. But isn't good judgement the result of experience and experience the result of bad judgement? I cannot imagine driving a similar size monohull in the same conditions with the same speed. Next day in the morning wo reached Coquimbo. our first fuel stop, and I he log showed that wc averaged 15.5 knots in adverse conditions with a fuel burn of 1.17gal/nin.
As we had no system failures or breakdowns during the first 059 nm leg, we thought that we had reached the end of the shake-down cruise and now we were into the more enjoyable part. Big mistake. The next goal was Arica, the northernmost Chilean port and close to the border of Peru. The high-pressure system was very protective and gave us perfect sailing weather. We were really missing a mast and some sails and the 15-IS knots from the south assured good progress. After hours powering north and parallel to The Chilean desert, on a routine check we dis covered an inflated hydraulic steering hose. There was not enough spare hose on board to change an entire 15ft-longhydrauliccircuitand had to look for the next available harbor. The Chilean coast doesn't offer too many options and the old mining town of Iquique. 20rgadus Lat. South was the logical choice.
The little "Club de Yates" is not really prepared for a 50ft catamaran. but we managed to convince the sea lions to move a little bit from the beach and with the bows almost touching sand we could get the aft starboard rear swimming platform next to a floating dock.
The inner core of the hose was somehow punctured in one spot and the hydraulic fluid leaked into the outer hose liner. That made the hose look like an overly stuffed sausage, a scary sight.
As we were slill in Chile, we managed to get spares from the yard and fixed the problem wit hout greater difficulties. Later it turned out that this was the first and last technical problem over the 5000 nm. I had to fly back home to the yard because of all the other new constructions taking place at Alwoplast for the US market and Wolfgang and Ron i had to takeover the remaining trip to Panama on their own.
Because of unfavorable reports from different sailing vessels, the intention was to power directly to Salinas in Kcuador, leaving Peru on starboard. That was a 1300nm + trip and PS was running almost 1) knots with 1230 rpm, burning 0.7gal/nm. The constant southerly winds around 10-12 knots and calm seas made for excellent sailing conditions. Doesn't get any better, and the crew had time to adapt to constantly rising temperatures. Thelogbook really had nothingexciting to offer.Alittledinghy trip on the open ocean, a nice Dorade on the trolling line ami a dive to check the underwater appendages and props.
A friendly, but not very efficient reception from port authorities marked again the difference to Chilean habits. It always surprises the sailing folks when they enter Chile. Nothing to do with the rest of South America. Friendly, efficient and no charges. Very professional. The950gal. of fuel had to be replaced, also some fresh food, and wc were out to sea again. Sea conditions were st ill perfect and DS purred along again at 15 knots, far away from the Colombian coast, just to play it safe. Water and air temperatures were constantly rising and the next morning found us in the middle of a small outboard-powered fishing fleet way out at sea. The tropical convergence zone was up to her reputation. Rain showers out of nowhere, constantly changing winds and sudden squalls up to 40 knots.
Two nights before reaching Panama we had strong winds right on the nose, a very short-but-steep sea and barely tolerable heal. The fatigued and very tired crew called the yard via SAT. phone and asked (tongue-in-cheek) for a Taxi to bring her back home! Speed was down to 1050 rpm, averaging 7.5 knots. Landfall before Panama was at "Isla San Jose" in the group of "Las Perlas" islands. The perfect anchorage was at 08 l.VN. 79 "06' W. over 18 feet of crystal-clear water and what a temptation to stay for a while, but this was not a holiday cruise. The cat and crew were supposed to be in Panama the next day in order for me to rejoin them for the remaining trip. The name of the game is "delivery." FlamencoMarinain Panama had usforthreedays.toprepare for the transit to the Atlantic.
As it was the weekend, we enjoyed the busy life around the restaurant at the club house. It looked I ike we found the absolute in-place in Panama, where the rich and beautiful had created their hide-out. Some club members looked at us in disbelief when they heard that DS had just come up from 40° South, doing over 3500 nm in just two and a half weeks and basically we did only general maintenance work like washing the salt off and polishing the stainless. It seems that a good agent is the way to go, regarding the transit documentation and lirst time measurement. On Tuesday. November 16"', thanks to the agent we got two extra line handlers antl were right on time at the lirst Miraflores lock with our "canal transit advisor." The transit was an enjoyable experience (alongside a small cruise vessel going up and ahead of a big ship and along side going down). I lowever. t he Atlantic welcomed us wit h lousy and very windy weather conditions for the next leg up north.
Anchored that night at the flats in Colon and as the town had nothing special to offer, the next morning we headed out to sea again. After rounding the breakwaters, the reality of a push, push delivery trip sneaked back into our thoughts. A caulions sailor would never have left harbor undergiven climatic conditions, but as we had to meet a deadline in Miami and our confidence in DS'seagoing capabilities were now really sky high, so we decided to continue. For the first two clays we had to deal with trade winds against us, between 25-30 knots and rain squalls with 35 knots. Seas were extremely nasty and the heat did the rest to the crew. During twodaysnobody took in any food and we basically tried to find a place somewhere aft and low in the boat to get some rest bet ween 3 hours of watch periods upon the helm. Theamount of floating debris and entire trees, most likely the result of the last big hurricanes of a couple of weeksearlierwerefrightcning. During daytime we managed to maintain about 12 knots with a sharp lookout but, at night, we slowed down to 7 knots because of threatening collisions with floating tree trunks.
Again we were very happy about our strongly built bulbous bows and the protection they offer in case of a head-on collision. We thought of all the poor souls who lost their lives during the last hurricanes and realized how close we were to possibly becoming delayed victims of the same terrible natural phenomena. I cannot recall how often we checked (in our thoughts) the laminate schedulesand our established quality-control systems, whenever a big wave crashed under the bridge deck.
Incredible how strong and fatigue-resistant a well-built vacuum-bagged composite panel can be (Divinycell foam core, VectorPly re- inforcements and Vinylester resin from BASF). Again, under normal conditions, a careful seaman would never put himself and the boat through a test like that, but we had to and we were sure about the integrity of the structure.
Thanks to modem electronic charts, (GPS, radar, paired with old-fashioned seamanship, we managed to get safely around all the reefs and little islands in that area. It was a constant gamble between angle to the wind, speed and acceptable discomfort, but altera treacherous 884 nm, we tied up at Enrique Lima's Marina in Isla Mujeres, Mexico. Obviously DS took all the st rain wit hout any complaints, something that the crew cannot boast of! After the customary two-day lay-over with cleaning, polish- ing and refueling we left Mexico for our last leg. again against prevailing wind conditions.
Because of fuel burn considerations and avoiding too much discomfort, we never saw engine loads over 50% and the preferred speed was around 15 knots with 1.17gal/nm. For a real long distance: cruising speed of 9 knots burning 0.7 gal/nm seems to be perfect.
We learned a lot about how well the catamaran performed over very long distance passages and a wide range of diverse sea and wind conditions. We have satisfied ourselves that we arc producing the ultimate long-distance cruisers and have nothing to change on our structures or design, and only minor improvements to make in system layouts. "For sure it was a hell of an adventure," as Barbara and Bob had said two years earlier about the Barbara Mae. See Dalilah Sue at the Miami Int'l Boat Show. Feb. 17 - 21