The Reliance Project 2

Some fabulous spar dimensions coming out to air at The Reliance Project – to build a one-sixth scale museum-quality fully rigged model of the 1903 America’s Cup winner at the The Herreshoff Museum at Bristol, Rhode Island, USA.

After the scare of the G.L. Watson designed Shamrock II challenge, Reliance’s designer Nathanael Herreshoff was taking no chances:

Boom 115′ long with max diameter of 21″ …
Spinnaker boom 83′ 4″ with max diameter of 12 9/16″ …

Reliance's 10fft (32m) boom bends to the breeze as she sits nicely to windward of Shamrock IIILibrary of Congress

Reliance’s 115ft (35m) boom bends to the breeze as she sits nicely to windward of Shamrock III.
Library of Congress

Read more at the project blog.


Buy Martin Black’s G.L Watson – The Art and Science of Yacht Designhere.


About Peggy Bawn Press

496pg biography of Scottish yacht designer, George Lennox Watson (1851-1904). Significant book on the history of yacht design & the development of modern yachting. Beautifully illustrated. Many photographs previously unpublished.
This entry was posted in America's Cup, boatbuilders, boatyards, G.L. Watson, G.L. Watson clients, Irish yachting, other yacht designers, replica, yacht racing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Reliance Project 2

  1. Murshed Alam-Ahmed says:

    I enjoy your blogs. I was a Naval Architect/shipyard apprentice at Denny’s of Dumbarton (1956 – 1961).There are excellent NY Times reports (dated 1901 and 1903) on the the Denny built Shamrock II and Shamrock III.

    SHAMROCK II. In 1901 Sir Thomas Lipton commissioned William Denny & Brothers, Dumbarton; Scotland to build a yacht for the America’s Cup. The yacht was designed by George Lennox Watson

    Length Overall 135’ 2” Length Waterline 89’ 6” Beam – 24’ 3” Depth 25’ Mast 158’ 6” Bowsprit to Boom 184’ 6”
    The shell was manganese bronze. The mast was tapered vanadium steel tube.

    The craft was a beautiful example of design and workmanship – the finest example of a large racing yacht ever seen. Alas! Now only models and photographs exist of these magnificent racing yachts.

    Sir Thomas Lipton ordered Shamrock III in 1903.

    The vestiges of Denny’s have totally disappeared in Dumbarton, only a Model Tank exists.

    Mo Ahmed/Dana Point/California

  2. Fascinated to read about your Denny of Dumbarton apprenticeship.

    ‘Shamrock II’ really was a masterpiece, and should have won the America’s Cup in 1901. The subsequent defence, which would presumably have been sailed on Belfast Lough, is one of sailing history’s fascinating “what ifs”

    The Denny Tank Museum at Dumbarton, the world’s first commercial ship model testing tank, opened in 1883, and where Shamrock II’s lines were developed, is well worth a visit.

  3. Edit 27 March 2013: boom length changed from 105ft to 115ft per the project’s Sandy Lee’s 15 January “Reliance Project” blog comment at,

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