Sailship Sonabia

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Single-handed sailing on Sonabia:  Design 4 Sea

2013 01 16 – At anchor, Puerto Williams



Model RM1050.
Architect Marc Lombard.
Shipyard Fora Marine.
Construction 2007.
Refit for Tierra del Fuego 2015.

Passengers and autonomy

Cape Horn expeditions: 4 passengers (5 max) + skipper

Architecture – construction

Plans – lateral and front views

2013 06 25 – Technical zone, Hendaye.

Dimensions: 10.50 m. x 3.95 m., draft 1.60 m.
Displacement: loaded ~ 6.5 tons.
Hull: plywood epoxy, 5 chines.
Deck: fiberglass polyester, sandwich on roof.
Twin keels (cast iron, 800 kg each).
Central rudder.

Sails and rigging


Plans – Sail configuration.
1 mast (sloop).
    Genoa, 1 reef .
    Furled stay sail.
    Main sail full battens, 4 reefs.
Sail surface:
    Genoa + main sail ~ 65m2.
    Main sail 4 reefs + staysail ~ 20m2 (heavy weather)
Shrouds and stays:
    Swageless terminals + mechanical fuse on top
    Dyneema 12mm
    Spare halyards mounted permanently
    Recovery lines on main sail and genoa
    Preventers on boom and genoa pole.
    Reinforced lazy jacks and sail battens


Volvo Penta 30 HP.
Sail drive
2 blades folding propeller.
Average fuel consumption: 2 L. / hour at 5 knots.
Tank capacity: 2 x 130 L.
Dual control panel, inside and outside.


Solar panels 2 x 100w back contact technology
Service batteries: 2 x 90AH
Engine battery: 70AH


Main anchor: 20 kg. + 60 m. high resistance chain and shackles (10 mm. grade 40).

Spare anchor 16 kg + 10 m. high resistance chain.

Shore lines:  2 x 100 m. (diameter 18mm)

Tender: inflatable, capacity 3 persons.


External + internal steering.
    cockpit: tiller
    cabin: joystick.
Autopilot Raymarine ST6002,
    dual control (cockpit+cabin)
    remote control
    complete spare pilot ready to mount


GPS: Furuno + handheld GPS +  spare GPS.
Instruments: Raymarine (wind, speed, depth).
Weather: barograph WIB2.
Detectors: radar+ AIS  Ciel & Marine.
Navigation: netbook + open source software, Connections: Sea Talk + NMEA 183+ serial-usb ports.
Communications: Fixed and portable VHF
Other instruments: barometer, thermometer, clock.
  • Water

    Fresh water capacity: 2 x 250L.
    Warm water: heater 30L, on engine and 220v.


    Plans – interior

    2 cabins + 2 sea berths in dining room.
    Pillows, sheets and sleeping bags provided.

    Front Cabin

    Rear cabin

    Sea berth

    Heating and insulation
    Fuel stove (Refleks 66).
    Engine heater (radiator + electric fan).

    Roof insulation: 10 mm. PE foam, on 10 mm sanitary vacuum.
    Double glazing on portlights.

    Dining room
    Central folding table, seats for 6 persons

    Sink, 2 taps + shower.
    Alcohol stove.
    Gas burner (plancha) to cook outside.

    Marine toilet.
    Washbasin,  2 taps + shower.

    Chart table and instruments
    Panoramic view (windshields)
    Daylight: windshields + roof portlights
    Ceiling lamps with LEDs
    Individual reading lamps
    Closets and storage:
    Storage under floors
    Closets : storage boxes – secured with elastic lacing



    Plans – Deck
    2015 10 06 – Hendaye
    2016 03 20 – Puerto Williams
    Deck cover
    Anti slippery material (sand+rubber paint)
    Lateral foot rests   
    Stratified, 5cm high
    Secondary function: reinforce deck-hull junction.
    Deck chainplates
     Stratified tubular chainplates to secure sails, etc.
    Deck gear
    Simplified deck gear for robustness and ease of maintenance, friction rings, etc.
    Dog house
     Laced polycarbonate panels (flexible structure).

    Deck safety

    Sidelines 10 mm. dyneema-polyester.
    Textile handles wherever needed.
    Safety straps at the mast and at the stern.
    Safety net at the rear of cockpit (originally open).
    Deck lifelines: 10 mm. dyneema-polyester, elevated and centered to tie oneself short.
    Safety marking: reflective + luminescent.
    Personal safety devices:
    Life jackets.

    General safety

    Electronics: EPIRB with integrated GPS

    Fire: 2 fire extinguishers + fire blanket.
    First aid kit

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