BB 10 – Fast and Simple


By Steve Killing
A Soling with the cabin house of a Dragon? The BB 10 Meter is the creation of Borge Borreson and his son, Anders, who designed and originally built the boat in Denmark. In the past, the Borresons built Solings ( one of which won the gold medal in the 1980 Olympics) and Dragons, and the exposure to the bracing classes made the younger Borreson keen enough to obtain his degree in naval architecture.
Then they had the idea of producing a boat of their own design, a performance-oriented family racer that was easy to sail. This boat is a natural progression for men who have been producing Dragons and Solings, and they have managed to keep that aesthetic appeal in their new creation. Many of you have seen and some have had the pleasure of sailing a Soling, so it may be helpful to use the Olympic keelboat as a comparison.
First, enlarge a Soling about 20 per cent (enlarging a boat is not this straightforward in yacht design, but this is just an exercise). This boat now has the same freeboard and length as the BB-10, but the Borresons have produced a yacht with less beam. And you thought that a blown-up Soling looked slim. The sailing stability of a boat is always an interesting characteristic to study, and from the designer’s point of view one of the most challenging to tune to perfection.

The BB-10 has a lot of ballast (54 per cent of its weight is lead) which will help offset its very narrow beam. Our overgrown Soling has about the same percentage of ballast, and you have to perform all kinds of outrageous hiking maneuvers to keep it sailing upwind at peak performance. Mom and Dad don’t have the knees for that kind of stuff anymore. So how does the BB-10 do it? Two important factors.
It has enough extra displacement to give the hull a greater righting moment, and it has a smaller sail-plan. The sail-plan arrangement is very sensible. For those super light-air days you can pull out the big genoa, but often the little lapper will be all that is required to scoot around the lake, and you won’t be, overpowered. To get you into those shallow spots for lunch, Borreson has kept the draft down to four feet, 10 inches.
The resulting keel’s aspect ratio is a little low for efficiency, but has lots of area. The sailing characteristics resulting from combining that keel with the narrow hull should be minimal leeway and very little chance of stalling the keel-even coming out of one of those tacks when your crew, in the heat of the moment, has wrapped the sheet counterclockwise around the winch.

Their brochure states that “standing headroom is only four feet, nine inches, though sitting headroom is ample.” I’m not sure that “standing headroom” is the correct term here, but we will let the figures speak for themselves. The interior is not meant to be lush. It’s a bit like camping in a fiberglass tent. There are settee berths for sitting or snoozing and a galley module that pulls out from under the cockpit when required.
Just forward of the mast are several substantial built-in lockers, and forward of those a large V berth. With more than a hundred boats sailing in Europe, this design is not new. According to Bob Scharf o

f Scandinavian Yachts in Annapolis, Maryland, the bid to expand the BB- lO’s market began with a brief period of production in the United States (about 20 were built) but they are now moving their molds to Whitby Boat Works in Ontario.
The Canadian dollar, combined with Whitby’s quality construction, makes the move look attractive, and if all goes as planned, the first boat off the line should be slipping into the water just about now.

For more information, contact Scandinavian Yachts Ltd., 222 Severn Ave., Annapolis, Maryland 21403.

Originally Published In Canadian Yachting’s July 1984 issue.

LOA…………..32ft 10in
LWL…………..23ft 11in
Beam…………7ft 6in
Draft………….4ft 10in
Sail Area………370ft2

Steve Killing is an independent yacht designer based in Midland Ontario. He is the head of the design program for the True North America’s Cup Challenge.



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