Gather round boys and girls and have a gander at what Santa did not bring me for Christmas this year. One big reason for this is that this boat does not yet exist. Indeed, it may never exist. The yacht Ankida, near as I can tell, is merely a concept, a fanciful g leam in the eye of a designer named Alexander Isaac, who works with Lila-Lou, a design “studio” based in both London and Switzerland. Mr. Isaac has not deigned to return my telephone calls, so I can offer no intelligence on whether this thing actually has a snowball in hell’s chance of ever getting built, but I can say this:

Wowza!!! This is an entirely different approach to rigging a sailboat.


Ankida‘s design features both an A-frame rig and an A-frame keel that are integrated to form a unitary rectangular structure that embraces the hull. That ballast bulb you see at the bottom of the keel is mobile and can shift to either side depending on the boat’s sailing angle. The rig, meanwhile, incorporates twin booms on either side of the A-frame mast that can slide independently back and forth on a fore-and-aft axis along the gunwales of the vessel or can be winged out athwartship when running off the wind. In the latter scenario, a roller-furling midship spinnaker is also deployed from the top of the A frame so as to increase area in the center of the sailplan. At the top of the mast there is also a “magnetically levitated” wind turbine that purportedly will generate enough juice to power both the house and sailing systems.

The rig you will note is quite short and that keel down there does a lot to maximize wetted surface area, so there’s no telling how well this thing might sail in reality. I’m also a bit skeptical about that wind turbine. I’d be surprised if could run much more than some house systems on a reliable basis. But I would love to find out just how feasible this beast might be. It is a very elegant looking vessel and deserves to be created.

If you WaveTrain riders will send in enough money, I shall remedy Santa’s omission and commission Ankida‘s construction directly. Or maybe one of you would like to do that yourselves. If so, please send pix when she’s finished. Meanwhile, for inspiration you can watch a nifty video showing how everything on the boat shifts around while sailing by pressing on this link here.

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1 Response
  1. Andrew Troup

    hmmm…from an engineering point of view, quadruped masts make not much sense, especially in the configuration shown, where they are unstayed but potentially exposed to major off-axis loads.

    Compression loads (imposed by the cumulative leach and luff tensions) will be very significant, and subdividing compression loads among four slender struts or columns actually means the struts will need to be collectively much heavier to carry the same load (roughly double the weight of a single spar). Fancy materials don’t help as much as one might speculate, either, in the case of slender, unstayed columns.

    The booms shown are even more structurally fictitious: they’re exposed to very severe bending loads, and yet they have the proportions of kebab skewers.

    While the concept is very thought provoking, it’s clearly bears a similar relationship to practical sailing vessel design to that which George Lucas’ team has to NASA.

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