The Shearwater 45 came into being via a rather strange route. The Shearwater 39 had proven to be a popular cruiser and soon built a reputation as a seaworthy voyager that caught attention wherever it went. There were people who wanted a bigger sister but nobody would commit by commissioning the new design nor coming up with money to finance the cost of building a plug and moulds.
Eventually my friend Pat Fraser, who had been a professional boatbuilder, came to me with the same thoughts but with an idea to make the whole process more viable with a limited budget. He suggested that we take bow and stern mouldings from the moulds of the Shearwater 39 and set them up further apart, then fill in the rest of a 45ft boat between them. Crazy as it sounds, it was a practical idea, so we ran with it.
I drew lines for a 45ft hull and blended the ends into as much of the 39 as I could use. The result was in many ways a stretched out 39, with only small increases in beam and underbody depth and no change in freeboard. Aside from trimming off the skeg and changing from a transom-hung rudder to an inboard spade rudder, the rest of the hull and deck concept was to stay the same. From a relatively beamy 39 footer, we produced a relatively slim 45.