News and FAQ's

 

Firebird Frequently asked Questions:

 

1. What are the accommodations?
There are two single berths in each hull with sitting headroom. The hull accommodations have been described as "cozy". In order to provide a more spacious living area we have developed an optional Cruising Package (5'x11' fold up soft cabin, 6' headroom, hard floored, 100 lb.)

2. Do you sell kits?
Yes. We will sell a Firebird to you at any stage of completion. We must be assured, however, that the boat will be finished to high standards and be safe.

3. How long does it take to assemble (trailer to water)? Loaded trailer weight? Tongue weight?
With our newly designed folding trailer the average time from trailer to water is 90 minutes. The trailering weight is 2500 lbs. and the tongue
weight is 150lbs.

4. How much does it cost?
The Firebird Classic (12m carbon mast and carbon beams) sells for US$ 70,500. A Daysailer version (11m aluminum mast and aluminum beams) sells for $49,500. Both prices are without sails and trailer.

5. Why does it cost so much?
The price is not a lot for what it is. Built in the USA price could be lower if we utilized foreign labor. The price of the Firebird is indicative of the very high quality of design and construction. It is a 1st class boat, beautiful fittings, very light, very strong, 1st class materials.

6. How many have been built?
Sixteen have been built.

7. How fast is it?
The maximum speed we have seen on our GPS is 27 knots. The boat is very fast and when well sailed regularly beats most other boats it races against.

8. Why should I trust Still Water Design with my money?
Still Water Design is a company that has been in business since 1992 and has produced more than 250 boats. Our clients are very demanding and always end up satisfied. When you call us, you will be talking to the same guys that will build your boat and race one just like it. There are no "salesmen". We have a strong track record of making sure our customers get a finished product that exceeds their expectations.

9. Is the boat prone to capsizing? Is there a righting system available?
The Firebird's wide beam (17ft.) and deep rounded bows allow you to keep the boat on its feet even as the rig develops large amounts of power. As with any high performance catamaran "operator error" can result in a capsize. We do offer a compressed gas righting system for those customers who are interested.

10. What are the construction materials and methods? Hulls, beams, mast?
The hulls are meticulously hand built, vacuum bagged, foam sandwich construction. High strength epoxy resin, carbon and glass fiber are utilized to create an extremely strong, lightweight, and elegant structure. The beams are built of epoxy, carbon, and glass fiber and are cured in a high temperature autoclave. The mast is crafted of 100% carbon fiber and epoxy and is also cured in a high temperature autoclave.

11. Why would I buy a Firebird and not a Raider, Reynolds, or Farrier?
Many reasons. The Firebird is built here in our Boston shop. If you would like custom work or need repairs down the road, we are here in Boston
and can provide you with prompt and high quality work. We use only the highest quality fittings and construction materials. Our temperature controlled laminating room, machine shop and welding facility can handle virtually all of our needs on-site. We control all aspects of the construction and fitting out of your boat. When you buy a Firebird, you are getting very high quality construction combined with an exceptional design. You will not be disappointed. Oh, yeah.....the boat is really fast and exciting to sail.

12.How many people can I take sailing?
One of our partners regularly day sails with 4 adults and 3 children. As with any lightweight boat, the highest performance is achieved by keeping
the crew weight down. The boat is usually raced with 2 or 3 people.

13. Would this be a good family boat?
Absolutely! Although the Firebird is a very fast exciting boat to sail, you can easily detune the rig for a more "forgiving" ride. The optional cruising package allows you to extend the length and comfort of your sail.

14. When can I get one?
From the time that we receive your deposit the boat will completed in three to five months.

15. Are there any used Firebirds available?
Yes. Our Firebird Ultraviolet is for sale. She was built in 1997 and is being offered for $ 65,000 including sails, outboard engine, and trailer.

16. What is the racing handicap rating?
We currently race with a New England Multihull Association rating of -40. We are the fastest rated boat in the fleet.

17. Is it a one design?
Yes and no. All of the boats come out of the same mold and have the same weight. You can be just as competitive with an older Firebird as with
a brand new one. There are no class limits on rig type (carbon or aluminum) or on sail area.

18. Is it hard to sail?
The boat is designed for performance oriented sailors and is therefore best suited to experienced sailors. That being said, the boat can be
detuned for the owner who would like to "grow into" the high performance as his/her skills progress.

 

Contact: Still Water Design, 1 Winnisimmet Street, Chelsea, MA, 02150, by e-mail: dick@stillwaterdesign.com, tel.: 781.608.3079
Credits: photos by Lorin Alusic and Claus-Christian Plass