The award-winning Tartan 4000 arrived in Thailand and wowed the crowds at the Asian boat shows with classic looks and solid performance standards.
George Foose is an avid sailor, and one of his dreams was to be the proud owner of a Tartan Yacht. After moving to Thailand and participating in a number of regattas around the country on his Ericson 38 Freewind, Foose’s dream came true when he bought a Tartan 4000, one of the latest yachts to emerge from the US builder. Along with that came the offer to start a dealership for Tartan in Asia – the first ever for the firm. That Tartan 4000, which Foose had on display at the 2012 editions of PIMEX and the Singapore Yacht Show, was one of the first to be built – Foose naturally christened it, Dream.
Tartan Yachts are built in Painesville, Ohio, USA, which borders the huge network of the US Great Lakes system. Though less well-recognised in Asia (so far), Tartan Yachts has been building performance cruising yachts for experienced buyers for 50 years. The quality, finish and overall superiority of this mid-sized cruiser puts this craft at the forefront of cruising sailor’s desire for a yacht that is both ideal for long passages and competitive racing. According to Tim Jackett, the designer behind the 4000 as well as most of the line, Tartan buyers tend to be experienced owners who appreciate good looks as well as a design that meets the needs of short-handed sailing.
The Tartan 4000 continues in Tartan’s tradition of building yachts with a classic feel that somehow manages to hide the modern construction techniques and great cruising performance. On the 4000, the performance features include carbon fibre construction of the mast, Park Avenue boom (these are the type that were first used on the J-Class series of yachts), steering pods and rudder shaft. The lightweight construction of the spars means that, although the styling on the Tartan is retro, the performance standards are higher than you’d expect. The mast, for example, weighs a scant 100 kilogrammes shipping weight.
Added to this is what Tartan calls the Cruise Control Rig; essentially a design that is geared towards short-handed sailing. The 4000 comes with a Solent Rig (twin headsails on twin furlers located close to each other). The inner headsail is self-tacking, while the outer stay harbours a 150-percent genoa.
Aimed at the cruising market, she has the trimmings to offer a good turn of speed while keeping the focus squarely on Tartan’s main buyers; cruising couples. The keel-stepped mast, varnished cap-rail in solid teak and the twin helms on the cockpit all speak to performance. Chainplates are mounted inboard near the cabin, which allows for tighter angles when sailing to windward. The main sail is rigged with a German sheeting system and features two reefing points.
Other details include the steering pods and rudder shaft, all built in carbon fibre. The hull is constructed with Divinycell core in vacuum-infused BHP epoxy, while the deck area is done in balsa core. The Tartan 4000 is resin-infused laminated in one shot, eliminating secondary bonding of structural materials, adding to its durability. Tartan offers a 15-year warranty on the hull.
The 75-horsepower Volvo D2 diesel sail drive, all electrics including inverter and generator are Master Volt and the Interior fabric is ultra-leather standard.
Foose, in keeping with his strong attachment to Thailand, had the blue hull embossed with the logo of the Suphannahongse, fore and aft. This mythical Thai Swan is the identifying feature of His Majesty the King’s own royal barge, used for festive occasions on Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River and readily identifies with the Thai people.
As we sat in great comfort in the yacht’s ample air-conditioning at the Ocean Marina, Foose showed obvious pride in the cherry wood finishing, wood-work and trimming of the doors, cabinets and hatches around the craft. The interior is also fitted out with numerous overhead hatches, complete with mosquito netting and shades. Most of the windows can be opened, creating good ventilation where required. The cherry wood is solid stock, lending a sturdy feel to the furnishings and finishings.
The main saloon is comfortable and offers an open plan that nonetheless features discrete areas for the nav centre, the galley and for seating. There is plenty of storage space throughout, which will suit cruising couples well. Handholds are abundant and easily reached – a big plus – and this is matched against a distinct lack of sharp edges in the interior. Among the superior stainless fittings and equipment, the craft features an adjustable transom, for ease of boarding and, complete with a ladder, ideal for swimming and water sports from the yacht.
The main cabin near the bow offers plenty of comfort, with a centre-aligned bed, storage and hanging lockers, ventilation and plenty of natural light.
While Foose is an accomplished sailor, he will limit his time on the Tartan to be more cruising-oriented. He, no doubt, agrees with other sailors who rate “the truly versatile design of the 4000 that will facilitate coastal cruising and off-shore ventures, summed up by Beth Leonard: “(The Tartan)delivers excellent cruising capabilities; This boat is really a coastal cruiser, capable of passage-making. I would take it anywhere”, she added.
No doubt, George agrees and he is already planning passages to some of Thailand’s beautiful islands, especially in the Andaman Sea area, Phuket , Phang Nga and some of the myriad islands, such as Koh Chang in the south of Thailand, as well as Malaysia. Small wonder he got into the boat business.
In Thailand/Southeast Asia: www.searasports.com
Technical Specifications – Tartan 4000
Sail Area (100%): 86.3 sq. m
Ballast (fin) 2,903 kg
(Beavertail) 3,629 kg
(centreboard) 3901 kg
Displacement (fin): 8,892 kg
(beavertail): 9,119 kg
(centreboard): 9,573 kg
Ballast/D (f/b/c) .33/.40/.41
D/L (f/b/c) 137/186/195
SA/D (f/b/c) 20.9/20.1/19.5
Water: 379 lts
Fuel: 189 lts
Mast Height: 19.56m
Engine 55-hp. Volvo, saildrive
Designer Tim Jackett