Launching Stargazer – The First Of The XS Marines’ 40 Ft Sailing Boats

Stargazer is the first of the XS Marines’ 40 ft sailing boats, the XS40, based on the design of the Didi40CR from Dudley Dix Yacht Design. XS Marines has tied up with Dudley Dix Yacht Design to introduce new boats to their range of existing sailboats. XS Marines have been allowed to build fiberglass versions of the Didi 26 and Didi38, Didi40CR and market them as the XS26, XS38, XS40CR. The Didi40CR / XS40CR is based on Dudley’s original Didi38 “Black Cat” which was specifically built to take part in races – “CapeTown to Rio”. Black Cat has a great track record and has participated in almost every race since she was launched in 1996. Black Cat is one of the few boats to have survived a capsize situation during the race in extremely bad weather, rough seas and come upright to finish the race without modern navigational aids. This led to the next generation of Dudleys famous sailing boat the Didi40 CR being developed with a broader stern and longer water line.

XS Marines built the new wide-stern version of the Didi 40CR, marketed as the XS40CR, from plywood for a customer. They launched the first boat, named “Stargazer”. She is the second Didi 40CR to be launched, after “Passion X” in Sydney, Australia. She was launched on Saturday, March 17th, 2018, and raced the following weekend (not seriously though). After their first sail, builder Sheri Bamboat reported on her sailing qualities. “We sailed Stargazer from the moorings near my yard to Mumbai on 23 March followed by a race on 24th March. It really was a great moment. I need to thank and congratulate Dudley Dix Yacht Design on one of the most well balanced boats that I have sailed.” Having built the moulds, XS Marines is now offering the XS40CR to the Indian customers at competitive prices and favorable delivery periods.

The story behind Stargazer :

Building 40 feet or bigger sailing boats has always been a dream for Sheri of XS Marines right from his school days when he used to build models in craft class. XS Marines was approached by the client in 2014 July to build this sailing yacht. It was quite an eye opener for Sheri in terms of opportunity, awareness and demand for bigger sailboats.  Here was a person who had no knowledge of sailing but was keen on building a boat after seeing the rising numbers of those present in the Mumbai harbor. XS Marines explained that this was possible and encouraged the client to take up sailing by joining a sailing club and learning how to sail. They stressed on the client experiencing and enjoying sailing before deciding on what kind of boat he’d like to build. In October, when sailing season re-opened, the client joined the  Colaba Sailing Club and took up lessons with Fairwinds Sailing – Cyrus Heerjee for his sail training.

In 2015 XS Marines started discussion on the type of boat to be built. They decided to build a 38 Racing Cruiser foot boat, based on the Dudley Dix 38 foot Sailing Boat – Black Cat which has performed extremely well in races between Cape Town and Rio. The reason for choosing this design was her performance against bigger boats and the fact that she had survived a capsize to finish the race. Sheri was extremely motivated, here was a man with hardly a year into sailing, willing to place all his bets on them building a 38 ft boat! He contacted Dudley and the project took off from there. It was an ambitious project for a small boat yard like XS Marines who were used to building and repairing boats up to 22 feet… a dream come true.

Dudley was a great support to them during the initial stages of planning and boat building. Every mail or query was responded to promptly. The project took another turn in March 2016 when they learnt that the same boat design modified at the stern – longer and wider, could be made into a 40 ft Racing Cruiser. The client insisted that they consider the modifications and by April XS Marines had the skeleton / frames ready for skinning with the modified stern. The boat evolved over two years and despite additional restructuring, FRP skinning on the hull, deck and cockpit, the boat is just about 1.3 tons over weight. The boat still has much of its teak finish to show on the deck. It has been a great learning curve for XS Marines. Stargazer was launched in March 2018 and has been sailing regularly ever since.


We at wish Sheri Bamboat and XS Marines every success with building these boats for the Asian market. We also wish the owner of “Stargazer” happy sailing and successful cruising and racing on her.


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