Powerful and large enough for ocean crossings and extensive coastal cruising, yet comfortably handled by two people, the 20 metre luxury Jackson 67 pilothouse power catamaran was designed and custom-built from scratch to meet Findlay Andrews' exacting specifications.
The first of the vessels to be completed is Andreas - a 20.32 metre long luxury catamaran with a beam of 7.4 metres and a range of 2,200 nautical miles that was unveiled at the Sanctuary Cover International Boat Show earlier this year. Designed by veteran boat builder Geoff Jackson, Andreas is powered by twin 350 horse power, turbo-charged Yanmar engines and reaches 24.7 knots at top speed.
Because it was designed to accommodate just Findlay and wife Colleen, the Jackson 67 replaces large entertaining areas with spacious living areas and staterooms. She sleeps seven comfortably, with a Queen-sized master ensuite in the starboard hull and a Queen-sized bed, two single beds and a bathroom in the port hull. There's also a day bed in the pilothouse.
The bridge deck features a separate dining room, full size galley and spacious saloon, with steps up to the pilothouse.
The unique 'displaning hull' is designed to run through and displace the water rather than planing out, giving a smoother steadier ride and increased stability at anchor.
A team of 12 ship builders commenced on Andreas on March 1, 2001 and the construction and fit-out of the 27 tonne catamaran took 16 months and cost a total of AUS$2.1 million.
The main construction materials were epoxy composite with underwater materials consisting mainly of western red cedar stripped planks and endcore bulsa from waterline to gunnels, with all foam topsides.
The twin 350 horse power, turbo-charged Yanmar engines were selected for good power to weight ratio, compact size, reliability and fuel efficiency and the "future proof" navigation and communications system includes a state of the art radar and plotter system (Furuno GP36 DGPS differential GPS unit, Interphase forward-looking sonar, two Icom ICM402 HVF radios, and an Icom 800 Ham Transceiver) that is pc/Ethernet based and upgradeable via pc programming.
After sliding down the Brisbane Shiplifts slipway into the Brisbane River in late June 2002, Andreas was taken through sea trials in the Great Barrier Reef by Findlay and Coleen, together with some friends, during September 2002.
Andreas' performance was beyond all expectations according to Findlay and this period was used to discover any "bugbears" including a faulty fuel gauge, the positioning of the dinghy the very noticeable slapping of water on the chines at anchor.
"She was very smooth through the water, and even with the engines at 1,650 revs (max. 3300 rpm) they were barely audible from the pilothouse," Findlay said. " I was also amazed at the fuel economy we were getting from the Yanmars - 38.7 litres per hour - and that was with the gen set running intermittently."
Andreas exceeded its specifications for range (2,200 nautical miles on just 6,000 litres) and the 24.7 knots top speed was the beyond expectation of 23 knots.
On return to Brisbane the dinghy was promptly repositioned to the fly bridge. The chines were modified with a cove being built into the existing chine structure to alleviate the slapping at anchor.
According to Findlay the valuable lessons learned on building Andreas could see the next Jackson 67 turned around in about 12 months.