ARC 2012: Homemade Open 60

My Way 60 galley

Belay earlier transmission. Or part of it anyway. That “old Open 60” I pointed out in my last post, I learned yesterday is actually a new Open 60. Or nearly new. Turns out it was first launched in 2010 and was both designed and constructed by its owner, Michele Cassano (see photo up top), who spent eight years of his life working it on Italy’s Adriatic coast. Step aboard and you’ll find the finish quality is indeed a bit agricultural, but still it is a very impressive achievement.

Michele conceived the boat, which he calls My Way 60, as a performance cruiser, modeling it on older Open 60 designs that he considers to be fast and safe. Though he originally planned to install a canting keel and daggerboards, he reconsidered in mid-build and opted instead for a fixed keel, as he thought this would be safer and more comfortable for his family.

My Way 60 deck

Blank oval on deck where one daggerboard would have gone

The hull consists of foam-cored laminate set in epoxy, with solid laminate below the waterline. She displaces about 15 tons, draws about 10 feet, and has a sail area of about 240 square meters. The mast is aluminum, supported by rod rigging. There is no water-ballast system.

My Way 60

My Way 60, as viewed from the dock. She made the passage from the Canaries to St. Lucia in 15 days

My Way 60 tiller

One of her two tillers. Note the little wheel underneath to help it roll back and forth across the aft deck. The wheel can be locked if desired. An extension can also be screwed on to the front of the tiller

My Way 60 keel bolts

The keel is brought up through the hull and bolted to the deck. Those are the keel bolts you see there right under the boom

My Way 60 saloon

The main saloon. The large object in the middle is the engine box standing on one end

My Way 60 engine

The seat for the nav station is directly over the engine, an 82-hp Lombardini diesel

My Way 60 berth & head

Port side berth looking forward into the head. There’s another head to starboard, which has walk-through access to the front of the boat

My Way 60 forepeak

Four more berths forward of the mast. The boat sleeps seven in all

Ny Way 60 desalinator

All systems are totally exposed. This is the watermaker, which is mounted directly behind the companionway ladder

Michele sailed My Way 60 in the ARC with five other crew aboard and now plans to spend the winter cruising and perhaps doing a bit of racing here in the W’Indies. He expects to join the ARC Europe rally and return to Europe next year.

My Way 60, he told me, is the first boat he has ever built. When I asked him if he thought he would ever build another, he laughed and shook his head: “Only if someone will give me back eight years of my life.”

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