As we discussed a couple of weeks ago, Cochise is quite a vessel. I took lots of pictures and Steve Dashew walked me through the boat and pointed out many interesting details that he iincorporated into this 78-foot FPB. To review the previous posts, take a look at:
Part 1 http://bit.ly/Ultimate_FPB_1
Part 2 http://bit.ly/FPB_Part2
Now, for the final part of this review, here are some engine room details.
Cochise doesn't not currently have any engine room cameras, but Steve is planning to install them. He normally does not use them because he is of the school who insist on hourly engine room checks to physically inspect, smell, and touch what is going on in the engine room. Unfortunately, given the size and relative complexity of this boat, he feels it takes way too long to get here from the helm and do a thorough engine room check, and then return to the helm. He is simply away from the helm far too long, even assuming there is nothing to attend to in the engine space. So mounting engine room camera is on the list of winter projects.
Note the massive steering gear, with my iPhone for comparison. There are two completely isolated steering systems, each with its own hydraulic cylinder. Only one system is used at a time. The Accu-Steer units are from Washington State. The forward-facing pin on the steering is for fitting emergency manual steering, a system that can be rigged up for manual operation, although practically it will basically just lock the steering on center in the event of failure.
Steve has a jog stick at both helms, and he can bypass the autopilots (which is his normal method of steering) and control the pumps directly if there is a lightning strike that takes out any of his electronic controls.
All in all, Cochise in a very unusual passagemaker, with so much innovation and creative thinking that is all over this boat. My neighbors still grill me about her, and it was a thrill to spend time on such a marvelous vessel.
Steve and Linda decided to stop producing any more boats in the FPB program, and for good reason. They put a great amount of personal time into each boat, and this hands-on attitude is how they built all of their previous sailboats and FPBs. This personal connection is the only way to make sure it is done right, to their precise standards, and that is not something lightly handed off to someone else.
So they decided they want to spend more time on the water, and with family, instead of continuing to fly across the world supervising and managing additional construction projects. It sadly makes sense, even if we will miss the fruits of their genius and labors. This remarkable couple proved that there are many new ideas out there waiting to be uncovered by fresh thinking. This stands in marked contrast to mainstream boat builders who rely on tradition.
I personally wish this lovely couple Fair Winds and Following Seas. Until we meet again, Steve and Linda. You are an inspiration to us all.