America’s Cup Famous “Reliance” Yacht

photo source wikipedia

 America's Cup Reliance

Now you can own a piece of History America’s Cup “Reliance” Yacht Model


Reliance was the 1903 America’s Cup defender, the fourth America’s Cup defender from the famous designer Nat Herreshoff, and reportedly the largest gaff-rigged cutter ever built.

Reliance passing the Brenton Reef light ship at high speed, 1903. Photograph by Nanthaniel L. Stebbins.
Her design took advantage of a loophole in the contemporary ’90-foot’ rule, to produce a vessel with long overhangs at each end, so that when she |heeled over, her waterline length (and therefore her speed) increased dramatically

Reliance was one of the earliest pure large racing yachts; she was completely unfinished below deck, with exposed frames. She was also the first to employ winches (below deck), in an era when her competitors relied on sheer man-power.

Crew of Reliance

Her sail plan was massive: from the tip of her bowsprit to the end of her 108 foot (32.9 m) boom, she measured 201 feet (61.2 m), and the tip of her mast was 199 feet (60.7 m) above the water (the height of a 20-story building). Everything else was to an equally gargantuan scale; her spinnaker pole was 84 feet (25.6 m) long, and her total sail area, around 17,000 square feet (1600 m²), was the equivalent of 8 12 meter class yachts.

Her racing career was extraordinarily brief — and undefeated. She bested her America’s Cup challenger, Sir Thomas Lipton’s Shamrock III, designed by William Fife, in both races they actually finished (the third was called off due to light air). Sadly, this magnificent vessel was broken up the very next year; the 90-foot rule which had produced such extreme, dangerous and expensive vessels was abandoned, and Reliance became obsolete.

“They tell me I have a beautiful boat. I don’t want a beautiful boat. What I want is a boat to lift the Cup — a Reliance. Give me a homely boat, the homeliest boat that was ever designed, if she is as fast as Reliance.” — Sir Thomas Lipton, after his 1903 defeat


Reliance in drydock
Overall length: 200 ft
Length at water line: 90 ft
Beam (width): 26 ft
Draft: 20 ft
Displacement: 189 tons
Mast height: Over 200 ft
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