Saturday, 13 January 2007

Swanage ILB

Some 4 or 5 years ago the RNLI began to finalise plans for a replacement vessel for the old 'D' class Inshore Lifeboats. All sorts of vessels were trialed before the Institution realised that what they already ready had was about as good as it could get. Then began a methodical process designed to improve the vessel and bring it up to date.

The main problems with the old vessel were: the material stretched over time giving each boat a subtley different hull shape and hence performance, the boat contained a lot of wood which meant lots of maintenance, a lot of kit had been added since it's original design resulting in it being underpowered and slow, there was no fixed navigation system.

All of these problems were solved in the design process and IB1 was born. We as a station were priveledged to be involved in the design process and a number of us got our hands on the first prototype for a day. As with any design of boat, there are compromises,however, it is without doubt a far superior boat to its predecessor despite being the same hull shape. It also contains significant amounts of carbon fibre which, to someone as shallow as me, makes all the difference!This photo shows the 'pod' in the bow with it's stowage open, mostly made of Carbon fibre.


Anonymous said...

Very useful blog John. It's good to know the point of view of someone at the RNLI 'coalface'.

lifeboatjohn said...

Glad you like it Grazie. Le tme know if there is anything you would particularly like to hear about. Obviously I hope to be able to post lots of stuff about soon as they start to happen!

Unknown said...

can we have lots and lots and lots and lots more pictures of the new D-class please.

There are pix everywhere of the bigger boats... nobody like to admit the D-class ROCKS!

It's all about the Orange Hypalon :-D

Real men do it with a tiller :D

lifeboatjohn said...

Will do as soon as I can.