New Fontaine design Friendship 36 gets GMT sparOct 1, 2013
The newest boat in the Friendship series from Fontaine Design Group is a shoal draft centerboard twin rudder 36 footer. In a shift from previous Friendship boats, this one is to be built in the US vs New Zealand. Rockport Marine was awarded the contract to build the cold molded boat to be ready for an early summer 2013 launch, and selected GMT Composites as the carbon spar supplier.
The shoal draft of 32" made weight aloft a critical design element. The owner and designers spec'd a carbon rig to address this concern. Bid packages were sent out to several carbon rig suppliers, and Rockport's project manager, John England, said of their selecting GMT Composites for the job, "quality and price". John added in his down east way, "We knew GMT had the top notch quality this job demanded, and their pricing was competitive, which made the decision easy".
GMT has seen a growing trend in partnering with the boat builders of Maine the past few years. While the term "wooden boats" is not usually associated with "hi-tech", the boats often are. As the construction methods have evolved, so to have the rigs to take advantage of the performance, handling and safety. Adoption of carbon mast use has grown with cold molded boats, and GMT currently has contracts to build carbon rigs for several "wooden boats" currently being built in Maine.
GMT is excited to partner with a builder of Rockport Marine's caliber in making the Friendship 36 a true "luxury weekender" built in Maine.