Blown Away (by MissIsle)
Blown away is a Nautitech Open 46 Catamaran. After 18 months of research this was the chosen boat to enable Natasha to fulfil her dream of sailing across the Atlantic. Being a catamaran, it is essentially a very stable sailing platform to sail on and allows an exceptional amount of space on board letting Natasha move around more easily. Blown Away was not obtained as a high-performance vessel, but she does perform better when running or reaching which makes her ideal for this challenge as the set of the trade winds at that time of year makes the crossing predominantly a run or reach.
The accommodation is made up of 3 doubled cabins, all en-suite, with the owner’s cabin (Natasha’s) taking up the port hull. There is a spacious saloon comprising the galley, chart/nav station and ample lounge area, then out through the patio doors into the large cockpit area where you find the dining table, more seating and of course the 2 helm positions.
Specifications of the Nautitech Open 46
- 13.71 m Length overall
- 2.14 m Each hull beam
- 7.55 m Beam overall
- 22.6 m Maximum height
- 1.45 m Draught
- 16,720 kg Displacement
- 74 sqm Mainsail
- 98 sqm Gennaker
- 150 sqm Spinnaker
Control system on Blown Away
As with Natasha’s previous boats, the sip puff system was designed and built by Gary Lambert. The previous systems had to be adapted to accommodate 2 helm positions, linking up with steering and sail trim as well autopilot. The seating at each helm has been adapted to allow Natasha full access and visibility whilst controlling the boat.
There have been many other adaptations/alterations made to this boat which, whilst not an exhaustive list, include;
- Modified helm seats
- Internal and external ceiling mounted track system for safety of moving Natasha around.
- Running machine installed underneath the cockpit table
- Large rewind winches fitted
- Folding ramps
- Floating swimming platform
- Davit installed for hoisting wheelchair on board
- Boat entry points widened for wheelchair access
- Plus all the extras for blue water sailing which include generator, solar panels, wind generator, hydro generator, water maker, reverse cycle air-conditioning, red internal and cockpit lighting, fire alarm system and safety equipment.
Miss Isle too is a Mini 6.50. The Mini 6.50 is very short for its intended use and is beamy being nearly half as wide as it is long. Its width carries to the stern, allowing the craft to plane as a fast motorboat does. Minis typically sail as fast, potentially reaching 25 knots. They have two connected rudders and a narrow steel or iron fin keel with a lead bulb at the end. The mast height is typically twice the Mini’s length. Miss Isle too, as well as helm control, has sail trim operated by 2 Harken electronic winches that are operated by a tiny tongue switch inside the helmet. In 2017 we added a new Code Zero spinnaker. A versatile furling masthead, code zero can be used in a range of wind conditions to improve the boats performance; it can be sailed upwind in light winds but is also effective when reaching and sailing downwind in breezier conditions.
Specifications of the Mini 6.50
- 6.50m length overall
- 3.00 Hull beam
- 11.00 max height
- 1.60m Draught
- 1050kg displacement
- 420kg ballast
- 23.5qm mailsail
- 17.9sqm genoa
- 70sqm spinnaker (large)
The control system on MissIsle Too
The sip and puff control system was designed and built by Gary Lambert in 2012 using cutting edge technology. The system has proved to be extremely robust and has taken MissIsle Too and Natasha around much of the coast of the British Isles. It is hoped that the system can now be commercially manufactured and used in any sailing vessel that requires it. Many new adaptions have been applied to the system as the prototype has progressed, perhaps one of the most notable is the addition of the semi-auto sheeting. This allows the onboard computers to activate the sheet winches when Natasha alters course greater than 15 degrees. This is a particularly useful feature as it ensures that the sails are always fully powered. Something that would not otherwise be possible owing to Natasha only having a single straw that either operates the helm or the sheets.