Category: RELIANCE

Reliance in dry dockRELIANCE the ultimate skimming dish

To meet the latest English creation, a new millionaires' syndicate had been formed in the New York Yacht Club as soon as Lipton's challenge was received and took upon itself the task of financing a ninety-foot, up-to-the-minute racing machine. This syndicate was composed of Cornelius Vanderbilt, William Rockefeller,...

... Elbert H. Gary, Clement A. Griscom, James J. Hill, W. B. Leeds, Norman B. Ream, Henry Walters, and P. A. B. Widener. The syndicate gave Herreshoff practically unlimited financial backing, and the result was a boat that was extreme in every The "America's" cup racesway. With the water line length practically the only fixed restriction, Herreshoff took all kinds of liberties with the other factors, and "went the limit" as regards ends and sail area. It is said that her first cost was $175,000, exclusive of her equipment or of the expenses of running her throughout the season.

It will be remembered that in Independence, two years before, Crowninshield had experimented with the extremely flat, almost scowlike type of boat in a ninety- footer, and while the boat was practically a failure as a factor in the season's racing, she showed herself extremely fast on certain points of sailing and under conditions just suited to her. Herreshoff undoubtedly watched the flat boat's performance with considerable interest and noticed her good points, Yacht Reliance Under Full Sailand in Reliance, as the new defender was christened, the influence of Independence was apparent, — at least, if we can judge by certain points of similarity.

The new boat was an extremely flat craft, with shallow body, long and flat ends, and a very deep fin or keel. In other words, though she might not properly be called a scow, she was a "skimming dish" of the most pronounced type, with a fin keel attached. To show how extreme she was her forward overhang was twenty-eight feet long, and the after one twenty-six feet; and these long ends, with a flat floor, little deadrise, and moderately rounded bilges, gave very straight fore-and-aft lines, and a full waterline.

To see what she gained by this it need only be said that on a measured water line of less than ninety feet when on an even keel, when she was heeled so that her lee rail was just awash, she increased this water line length, or bearing surface, to 130 feet. Her quarter was very wide on deck, and she resembled aft "a saucer afloat". With it all, however, Herreshoff had "fined" the lines wonderfully, and there was nothing "brute-like" or heavy about the boat.

On this immense, flat hull with long water line, Herreshoff piled a mass of canvas such as was never before seen on a single sticker. Jumping some 3,000 feet from Columbia, the last defender, the Reliance spread 16,160 square feet of sail. This was over 2,000 square feet more than Fife had given Shamrock III, and when the two boats came together the Reliance towered well over her English rival. It was "some sail" to ask one mast to carry, but a steel spar was built for it with a wooden topmast telescoping inside, that managed to keep the canvas in shape when it didn't blow too hard, though the topmast broke once in one of the races during the summer. The spars and rig of Reliance were a wonderful piece of engineering work.

The new boat was built of Tobin bronze, and her general dimensions were: Length over all 143 feet 8 inches (as long as a 600-ton sailing ship), water line 89 feet 8 inches, beam 25 feet 8 inches, and draft about 20 feet, an immense chunk of lead being hung at the bottom of her fin.

The Reliance had been launched April 12th, and even in her sail stretching spins showed evidence of great speed, particularly in smooth water and light airs.

 Designer   Nathanael Greene Herreshoff
 Builder   Herreshoff Manufacturing Company
 Owner   Syndicat with Cornelius Vanderbilt, William Rockefeller...
 Club   New York Yacht Club
 Cup   Edition 12 (1903)
 Skipper   Charles BARR,
 Afterguard   Mrs. Hope ISELIN GODDARD, Herbert C. Leeds,ewberry Thorne, Woodbury Kane, W. Butler Duncan, N.G. Herreshoff, Dr J. Momahan
 Launching   1903, April 12
 Type   Gaff rigged cutter
 Hull material   Bronze with steel web frames
 Mast material   Acier
 L.O.A.   143' 9"
 L.W.L.   89' 6"
 Beam   25' 10"
 Draft   19' 7"
 Mainmast   115 '
 Mainboom   112 '
 Bowsprit   9,14 m
 Maintopmast   72 '
 Maingaff   71,90 '
 Displacement   189.4 short tons (171.9 metric tons)
 Sail area   1,567.3 square feet
 Rating   108,41 feet
 End of life   July 1914 : Scrapped by Brooklyn marine junk


Abordage : Reliance ( 1903 ) half hull wooden hand crafted

Donan Raven's Sailing Trivia - Reliance & Shamrock III (1903)

Published: June 23, 1903
Her Dimensions Allow Time to Constitution and Columbia.

Published: Aug. 16, 1903
Coming Yacht Races Likely to be Most Exciting Yet;
Summary of the Work Done by Challenger and Defender Since Each was Launched

Published: Aug. 19, 1903

Published: Aug. 19, 1903
Official Figures Give Challenger 1 Minute, 45 Seconds.

Published: Sept. 7, 1903
Theories Advanced as to Why Shamrock III. Was Built on the Fife Model.


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Plan of Reliance created with DELFTSHIP


Front view of Reliance created ??with DELFTSHIP

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Sail plan of Reliance