|Rig Type: |
Bermuda Sloop Fractional (with jib)
|Sail Area: sq. m|
|Spinnaker Type: |
|Spinnaker Area: |
|Designer(s): Giuliano Tofani & Lapo Ancillotti|
|Builder: Anglo Marine, Fletcher Boats|
|Class Association website: |
Can be sailed as single hander with mast in forward position or as double hander with trapeze and main and jib and with mast in rear position. Earlier ones were by Fletcher who are better known for speedboats and later ones were by Anglo Marine of Clacton who made the Wanderer dinghy. The design is possibly Italian and they may also have been made in Holland.
Here’s the real story of the ZOOM from Giuliano Tofani.
This dinghy was designed in 1978 in Viareggio/ Italy by two young sailors, Giuliano Tofani and Lapo Ancillotti. (Giuliano is me) … we was only 18 years old and with only a CLASSICAL high school background, ( old Greek, old Latin …) in short, armed only with passion and desire we have begun to build, ZOOM, and in meantime also learning everything you need to build light and strong GRP boats , helped by a 70 year old engineer who built GRP industrial products, as bodies for trains, aircraft parts, etc, all stuff it had to be light and stiff.
all in the backyard, my mother and the neighbors complaining of fiberglass stench and because of the noise, we were building the prototypes at night, during the day we went to school ..
final result was a dinghy of just 60 kg when similar boats was around 80 kg and the the very flat hull made ZOOM a very fast hull.
so in my opinion the result was not so bad ….
to meet the Italian market the equipment was economic, stright mast etc, but the centerboard was built in any case with a 30-layers plywood, oriented at 45 ° and NOT broke for when you jump on after capsize !!!
After pioneering the first year, and after improving many details, for the following 4 years we built this boat, opening a real shipyard, named MULTIDEA. with about 400 exemplares in italy.
then unfortunately, it was 1982, the windsurfing arrived on the market, and the Italians were not real stable sailor at those time, not enthusiasts like you English, so all the dinghy market died except for the Olympic classes and the Laser.
we stopped building ZOOM and using the past experience we began building racing boats of 10-15 meters, (IOR) in Kewlar, than carbon and epoxy, and growing more and more, we have become a real shipyard with 15 workers, large shed, secretaries and many phones that ring at all time…. In 1995 after having launched a 105 ft sailing boat ( !!) I decided that my personal passion was sailing and not build sailing boats, then we sold the shipyard. (Which now is always in good healt and it’s called VISMARA YACHTS in Viareggio Italy)
How Zoom arrives in UK: Fletcher in 1980 bought two boats and we give permission to build them under licence and royalty.
We come in UK, in Bedford, with two boats on the truck pulled out of the car an old OPEL caravan, sleeping with sleeping bag into a tent, no money in the pockets.
after a test in the water at the local yacht club, on a very narrow river in a very windy day, in a very freezing day, all remain enthusiastic of the ZOOM performances.
The deal was done, we spend a bit of days to explain how to make boats and we went back to Italy.
We’ll never see a penny of royalty …
this does not do much honor to you UK, but patience, was so long ago! let’s be friends anyway.
But for this reason I have no idea how many Zoom was build in UK.
then from Fletcher, the molds pass to Anglo Marine and we lost all ZOOM traces in UK.
the only thing I am sure, reading yours comment in this blog , it is sure the centerboard built in UK was a vey cheap plywood…
more about techicals:
the first 20 Zoom was single sail, after we added the jib
we in Italy was selling Zoom with trapeze and spinnaker, very nice. as optional
the last 10-15 ZOOM build in italy, was experimental again, with more sophisticated GPR, unidirectionals fibers had a shorter boom and the Mainsail with the first Top batten complete from the mast to the leech, so the sail was more modern and the mast was tapered.
Bruce Farr disegned a sailing plan for us like a 18 feet, total sq mt sails: 60 sqmt,,,, a very disaster, after she capsized twice stern to bow we ralised that somting wrong happened: we met Bruce very late at night in a pub after a regatta, after a lot of beers… not the right way to design anything. experience closed.