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Dublin Bay Boating News and Information

Displaying items by tag: Thunder Child II

The arrival of Thunderchild II into Dun Laoghaire Harbour on Friday gave rise to speculation that a Dublin powerboat record attempt might be on the cards this weekend, given the 80–mph Zero Dark RIB was also berthed at the town marina.

Both vessels have set separate Cork Fastnet Cork speed UIM record times, and it is understood both have an appetite to set further record times off the Irish coast. The latest time was set last month, as Afloat reported here.

On this occasion, though, it transpires the Frank Kowalski skippered Thunderchild was simply on her way home to Cork Harbour from a voyage to Iceland and had merely stopped off for a refuel at Ireland's biggest marina.

However, John Ryan's Zero Dark RIB may yet have her eye on some UIM record times while based in the capital's waters.

The high-speed RIB has been out Dublin Bay clocking up some impressive speeds over the past two weekends.

More news on any record attempt as we have it.

Thunderchild IIThunderchild II off Cork Photo: Bob Bateman 

Continuing their Arctic adventures, the crew of Safehaven Marine’s Thunder Child II followed Saturday’s 200nm cruise from Reykjavik to Ísafjörður in Iceland’s far north-west with a 400nm crossing of the Denmark Strait to East Greenland.

“We managed to get some 30nm from the Blosseville Coast, but running through very heavy fog for 40 miles and navigating through drift ice with zero visibility was extremely challenging and somewhat dangerous,” the team commented on social media.

“During the journey we found some wonderful icebergs off the Greenland waters and managed to fly the drone capturing some epic footage.”

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the state-of-the-art powerboat set a new record time (verification pending) for the crossing from Ireland to Iceland in under 32 hours at the weekend.

Published in Safehaven Marine

Safehaven Marine reports that Thunder Child II and crew have successfully achieved their world record attempt from Ireland to Iceland.

The XSV20’s sub-32-hour time over the 1,500km from Killybegs to Reykjavík is pending ratification by UIM but is already vindication of its state-of-the-art powerboat’s wave-piercing design.

The crew report today (Friday 9 July) that “the hardest leg was the North Atlantic where we were punching a head sea swell all the way”.

Tomorrow, Saturday 10 July, Thunder Child II will continue its voyage north, above the Arctic Circle, to the ultimate destination of East Greenland.

 

Published in Safehaven Marine

Safehaven Marine’s Frank Kowalski and the crew of Thunder Child II are setting off in the early hours tomorrow morning (Thursday 8 July) for their attempt to set a new speed record from Ireland to Iceland.

“It’s always a bit of a gamble with the weather, especially over a distance of 1,500 kilometres,” the team commented on social media. “We might get better if we wait, but then again we might not!”

“However as the forecast is also fair above the Arctic Circle and East Greenland, our ultimate destination, and sea ice is now clear south of Scoresby Sund, [so] we decided to have a go.”

The Thunder Child II crew, from left: engineer Robert Guzik, navigator Ciaran Monks, skipper Frank Kowalski, drone pilot Carl Randalls and Mary Power, logisticsThe Thunder Child II crew, from left: engineer Robert Guzik, navigator Ciaran Monks, skipper Frank Kowalski, drone pilot Carl Randalls and Mary Power, logistics

Thunder Child II’s record-seeking ambitions were first mooted nearly three years ago, months before the launch of the XSV20 powerboat with its specially designed wave-piercing hull.

Follow the team on their voyage from 3am tomorrow at the dedicated SafeTrx tracking page HERE.

Published in Safehaven Marine

Safehaven Marine has released video of sea trials during a recent unseasonal storm which produced some pretty rough conditions at the entrance to Cork Harbour.

The Cork-based performance boatbuilders managed to capture some impressive footage of Thunder Child II and the new Barracuda SV125 on the day.

The Barracuda was commissioned for Future Defence in the USA and is designed for search and rescue as well as coastal patrol duties.

The vessel is fully self-righting, able to recover if capsized by a large breaking sea and capable of all-weather operations.

Its design features a deep ‘V’ hull with midships and transom deadrise of 24 degrees and a wave-piercing bow of 65 degrees giving excellent head sea capabilities.

A wide 4m beam ensures high levels of stability in big beam seas and excellent dynamic stability in following seas. A twin chine arrangement ensures a very dry ride.

Powered by a pair of Caterpillar C8.7 650hp engines, ZF 380 two speed gearboxes with SD3L surface drive propulsion by France Helices, the Barracuda has a maximum speed of 43 knots and a cruise speed of 32 knots at 70% of max power.

At this speed each engine is consuming just 69 litres per hour, giving a 600nm range from the vessel’s long-range fuel tanks.

For much more on the new Barracuda, see the Safehaven Marine website HERE.

Published in Safehaven Marine

Safehaven Marine put Thunder Child II to the test against the might of Storm Brendan yesterday — showing just how well the wave-piercing powerboat can handle the roughest elements at sea.

Sea trials for the XSV20 design began a year ago but had taken a backseat to the successful Cork boatbuilder’s commissions for port and harbour vessels — an enviable situation which nevertheless saw the planned North Atlantic Challenge that had been scheduled for last summer moved to this year.

Thunder Child II has been developed in mind of setting a new west-east transatlantic world record, and a proposed route has been plotted from St John’s in Newfoundland, via Greenland and Iceland, to Killybegs on Ireland’s West Coast.

Published in Safehaven Marine

There was something about the look of the reverse stem of Safehaven Marine’s new 70ft Transatlantic record-seeker Thunder Child II in Afloat.ie this week which stirred a hidden memory of ships and speed writes W M Nixon. And then it clicked. Suddenly, we were transported back to the heady days of the 1890s, a Golden Age of engine invention. The memory was of Charles A Parsons of Birr, and his new steam turbine powered speedster Turbinia.

But apart from both having a reverse stem, the only other shared features of Turbinia and Thunder Child II are their quest for speed, and their links to Ireland. Thunder Child’s shape is a fascinating, inventive and exhaustively tank-tested mixture of mono-hull and catamaran, while Turbinia by contrast is a hundred feet of miniature naval destroyer, long and skinny with quite heavy displacement.

Thunder Child II 2Thunder Child II – “a fascinating, inventive and exhaustively tank-tested mixture of mono-hull and catamaran” Photo Safehaven Marine

Her creator was Charles A Parsons (1854-1931). The Parsons of Birr Castle were a very inventive and engineering-minded family, as anyone who has seen the mighty telescope at the castle will know. So although young Charles was educated at home, his tutors included some noted engineers, and after he’d dutifully done his time at Trinity College Dublin, he took the unusual step – for someone from his background - of signing up as an apprentice in what was then the engineering invention hotbed of the northeast of Englan

turbinia and mauretania3The commercial breakthrough – the tiny Turbinia alongside the new ocean liner Mauretania in 1906. Although the Royal Navy had started to use steam turbine power soon after Turbinia’s dramatic debut at the Fleet Review of 1897, it took a few years before Mauretania appeared as the first steam turbine-powered commercial vessel.

In due course in 1889, he and five partners established C A Parsons & Co to develop and demonstrate his invention of the compound steam turbine. From this emerged the Parsons Marine Steam Turbine Company in Newcastle, which commissioned the building of the Turbinia in 1894. It took several experiments with propeller designs and configurations before they felt they were getting the best out of the little ship, but it was time well spent, for in 1897 the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria saw the cream of the Royal Navy (a huge fleet in those days) assembled off Spithead for a formal review. The Turbinia – uninvited - came up and down through their serried ranks at a speed of 34 knots, much faster than any other ship of the time. The future of steam turbine marine power was assured.

These days, you can see the restored hull of the Turbinia in the Discovery Museum in Newcastle-on-Tyne, while her engine is in the Science Museum in London. As to where Thunder Child II will be in 125 years’ time – well, that’s anyone’s guess. 

turbinia in museumTurbinia’s hull on display in the Discovery Museum in Newcastle-on-Tyne

Published in Safehaven Marine
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This past weekend saw the successful launch in Cork of Thunder Child II, the next-generation wave-piercing monohull from Safehaven Marine designed to set a new powerboat world record.

Crafted at Safehaven’s boatyard in Youghal, the XSV20 cruised into East Ferry Marina in Cork Harbour yesterday after its first few hours on the water.

And it’s expected it will soon begin rigorous sea trials ahead of Safehaven MD Frank Kowalski’s attempt to set a ‘northern route’ speed record across the Atlantic later this year.

Published in Safehaven Marine
Tagged under

Thunder Child II is finally taking shape at Cork-based performance boatbuilders Safehaven Marine, with “another couple of more months” go before launch for sea trials in the New Year.

As previously noted on Afoat.ie, the XSV20 design developed over the past year crosses a wave-piercing monohull with a catamaran and is optimised for cutting through 4,000km of Atlantic sea with the aim of setting a new powerboat world record.

Safehaven Marine — with its design HQ in Cork Harbour and boatbuilding yard in Youghal — is also busy with its pilot boat commissions, the latest coming from Puerto Rico.

Published in Safehaven Marine

Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

© Afloat 2020