8-Metre Pleione

DESIGN #100: 47.8 ft LOA International 8-meter Class Sloop

Built (and Sailed) by: Bruce Dyson

Launched: 2004


LOA 47.8 ft                                        Sail Area (Upwind) 1,217 ft^2

LWL 30.6 ft                                       Sail Area (Downwind) 1,330 ft^2

Max Beam 8.6 ft                              ‘IM’ 41.8 ft

Draft 6.6 ft                                        ‘J’ 16.6 ft

Disp (Meas Trim) 18,400 lbs             ‘P’ 52.5 ft

Ballast 11,355 lbs                             ‘E’ 20.2 ft


Spars: 2-spreader aluminum mast to 8-Meter Rule min. wgt; Alum. boom, carbon pole

Rigging: Navtec rod standing rigging. Roller-furling jib w/drum recessed below deck

Winches: Lewmar; Gen:48/3OR, Hal/Spin:4ASTRsr, Main:440STOR, Run:44ASTOR

Electronics: Ockam or equivalent; Owner option

Engine: 27 hp Universal Diesel

Construction Details:

Hull skin is cold-molded with laminations of Spanish cedar and Hondouras mahogany over a laminated mahogany and ash structure. Gougeon epoxy resins are used throughout. Her construction is exceptionally rugged, since she must fully conform to Lloyd’s Scantlings in order to receive an official 8-Meter Class measurement certificate. She is finished bright inside. Her deck will be similarly cold-molded, and trimmed with bright-finished mahogany.

Design Comments:

This yacht was originally commissioned as an entirely custom design that can compete against the best 8-Meters in the world, but that will no doubt spend most of her life daysailing and coastal cruising. Her owner and builder is a life-long sailor and highly successful racer who might be seen by some as something of a sailing reactionary in that he has little interest in modern, lightweight, snub-nosed sportboats, or in high-sided , broad-beamed contemporary cruiser/racers. He knows from wry experience that when your next port-of-call lies to the northeast, the wind always seems to be blowing from the northeast. He wanted a boat that will roll upwind like a train without pounding him senseless, and he knew that a meter boat has a dream-like feel and motion upwind. He also knows that while surfing and planing downwind might get the adrenaline pumping when racing, cruising is not about adrenaline, and that jibe-broaches tend to spill the drinks; an 8-Meter will certainly never plane, but she will stretch her long overhang legs and reel off mile after relaxing mile downwind at well over 8kts in total control. This particular 8-Meter shows off a 1930’s style and grace above the waterline, but boasts state of the current meter-boat art below the waterline. Her interior will be similar in size to that of many 32-footers, which is just what her owner wants. There is quite active 8-Meter racing in Rochester, NY, Toronto, Canada, and in Europe. Pleione competes at these venues on occasion, and in some New England wooden boat events as well. This design is not intended to suit everyone, just those few independent thinkers who can appreciate classic style, comfort, and performance in a truly timeless yacht.

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Spanish cedar veneers over mahogany strip planking

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Laminated ash floor timbers over Honduras mahogany keelson

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Olin Stephens drops by for a visit to Owner/Builder Bruce Dyson’s Marblehead shop

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Pleione emerges, after shop door enlarged!

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Pleione hull dropped onto keel’s purpleheart deadwood at Dion’s Yacht Yard in Salem

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Launch day at Dion’s

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‘That damned 8-Meter’ leads the way (again) in the Eggemoggin Reach Race

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Pleione leads Hollandia and Fleur de Lis at the 8-Meter Worlds in Toronto