Formosa 46'?.... or a 45' Peterson 44'?
Doug Peterson is one of the US'
most famous yacht designers of the 1960's, 1970's, and 1980's. In the late
1960's, he designed Stormvogel and Ticonderoga, two of the most
successful maxis of their era (Stormvogel has been operated as a
charter boat in Asia over the past few years - we saw her in Phuket). His biggest
successes were probably the IOR boats he designed in conjunction
with Ron Holland during the 1970's and early 1980's which
included high profile racers like Ganbare, Gumboots, Imp,
Eclipse, Yena, Rubin, Ragamuffin, and Moonshine.
far as we know, his one major cruising design was the Peterson
44' (although some, like the Contessa 35 and New York 40,
were racer-cruisers). Peterson was looking to combine the solid
construction and comfortable interior lay out of the boats then
plying most of the world's cruising routes with some of the
go-fast lines of the newer racing boats. With a view to making
the boat affordable to a fairly large segment of the
would-be-world-cruising community, the boats were built in Taiwan
to reduce costs. In addition to the boats built in Taiwan, about
200 were built and commissioned by Jack Kelly Yachts out of
California. These boats were generally better fitted out than
their Taiwan counterparts. Click here to view a November
1997 Cruising World article on the 44.
design, end product, and pricing appear to have been very
competitive and about 600 Peterson 44s were sold. The design was
so successful it appears the Taiwan builder, Formosa Boat Building (though boats
were also build at the Queen Long yard as well we understand), reasoned that the boats would sell themselves
without Peterson's name attached, so why not just neatly cut him
out of the loop and thereby increase the profit margin.
achieve this, we understand that Formosa simply added one foot to
the 44" design (apparently in the cockpit area where
the 44's are a bit short on space - our observations support this) and marketed it as a Peterson
46 even though it was officially called a Formosa 46. There seems
to some truth to this as all of our ship's papers indicate that Redwings
is a Formosa 46 even though when we bought her there was a
Peterson 46 emblem on both sides of the transom and it was marketed to us as a
Peterson 46. In general,
these boats are referred to as Peterson 46's - at least the two
others in Hong Kong and the several I saw in Singapore were. We understand
that about 200 were built. However, Doug Peterson has reportedly never
received any royalties for the design. However, Kelly Yachts also
made a stretched version of the 44 which was actually 46 feet.
The design apparently had significant deck and keel differences
to the 44 and also a materially different interior layout and it
seems Peterson did receive royalties for this design.
of the details of this "F'in" story were provided by
"Chas from Tas", Asia's most experienced delivery
skipper with over 650,000 ocean miles to his credit who happens
to know Doug Peterson personally. So it must be true (ish)!!
Thanks also to Bob Hawk, a Peterson 44 owner and net surfer who
stumbled on our site and e-mailed us some additional information.
Check out the Peterson 44/46 Owners
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©2001 All Rights Reserved by Aaron Henderson and Colleen Duggan