“Beyond performance, we wanted a boat with classic appearance that could be easily maintained.”

Calvin Beal Special Edition, 38’—Star

Interview with the Captain —Kenneth Sigel

Including select quotes from the Captain as it appeared in Professional Boatbuilder (source below). 
Other publication highlights include:
The Star Project, Professional Boatbuilder, April/May 2020 (PDF)

SW Boatworks Launches a Star, Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors Boats of the Year, 2019 (PDF)
SW Boatworks: Star, Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors, July/August 2019 (PDF)

How did you come to build a custom Calvin Beal?
As my wife and I approached retirement, we found ourselves in a situation familiar to many sailboat owners looking to spend more time on the water. For 16 years we’d sailed a Valiant 40 more than 2,000 nm of coastal cruising. But our children grew up, and we had a lot of boat to handle and seemingly endless brightwork to maintain, which cut into either our sailing time or our bank account. It was time to consider a new style of boating that better fit our new circumstances and priorities.

The answer was a custom powerboat, but choosing the right builder to trust as a partner in this sometimes ticklish collaborative project was far from simple.  I define success this way: the owner is proud of his boat; it has general appeal and resale value; and the owner and builder become friends in the end.

I knew the type of boat I wanted, and researched builders. That led me to SW. We talked at length about the boat I wanted to have built. After several meetings, I knew Stewart Workman, the owner of SW Boatworks was the one I wanted to build my boat. 

What other kinds of boats did you consider before buying this particular model (and how did they compare)?
Young Brothers (also built by SW) but opted for the CB38 as the best fit for my needs

We definitely knew what we did not want. At 8 knots we had rocked and rolled in popular pseudo-tugs, sometimes even at the dock. We had pounded along at 25 knots in sportfishermen. At boat shows we’d also rolled at the dock in some sleek rounded-bottom jet-drive hulls, and we tried to imagine what it would be like to go forward to grab a mooring pick-up buoy on boats with streamlined euro-style hulls and no handholds.

The search confirmed some core principles for us: wide, moderately flat-bottom boats roll less; a proper skeg adds directional stability; a sleek, flared bow makes for a smooth entry in rough seas; and moderate height covering boards enable easy boarding.

At the boat shows we saw products that promised greater comfort and convenience—powered glass window-walls on wheelhouses, engine hatches that lifted with the touch of a button, and shore-power cords that retracted automatically. We identified these and similar frills as expensive and vulnerable to failure. We confirmed their poor service performance and short operating lives in discussions with our service yard and several marine surveyors. We wanted a boat, not a condo. We wanted to go places, not fix things.

Who first introduced you to boating/sailing?
Learned sailing starting at 8 years old on the Great Lakes.

What boats have you previously owned?
Fokboat, Rhodes Bounty Yawl, Hinckley 38, Valiant 40 

What are the features you like most about your boat?
Hull form, stability, solar system, great dive boat.  
Beyond performance, we wanted a boat with classic appearance that could be easily maintained. That meant no brightwork and a single low-rpm engine. We opted for a gelcoated hull and deck instead of paint; nonskid on the cockpit sole, not teak; plus easy access to the engine and electrical systems.

Do you belong to a yacht club or other boating organizations?
I am a member of SECONN (Southeast Connecticut Diver).

What is the biggest challenge you have in servicing your boat?
Nothing really. Cummins has a great support network. I was very involved in the build and familiar with all the systems. I do most of the work myself.

Do you have any advice for those looking to buy a Calvin Beal like yours?
Find the right builder!

What’s the story behind the boat’s name?
The star tattoo for sailors was meant to symbolize “follow your dreams, and find your way home.”

Click the gallery below for more photos and information about Star