Jaron Ginton's six-step path towards Naval Architecture success

Written by Laura Nicholls

Finding himself today in the quintessentially Dutch city of Haarlem, Israeli-born Jaron Ginton has taken the scenic route into superyacht naval architecture and exterior design. Serving five years as an officer in the Israeli navy before becoming charter captain of a 24-metre schooner and a 20-metre motorboat and travelling across the ocean to the Caribbean on a wooden sailing boat with his now-wife, “It was only at the age of 29 that I started to study naval architecture and then went into business with my partner, Ferri Weber,” Ginton explains. “After 11 years, in 2002, we split and I formed Ginton Naval Architects.”Jaron GintonWith such a varied path to yacht design, here Jaron takes SuperYacht Times through the six steps to his superyacht design success. 

1. My 11 years and 50,000 sea miles of active sea experience have significantly affected the look and function of my designs. As a user of a boat, you know what is required with things like the anchor arrangement and the chain locker - both things are annoying if they are not well designed! We also design to comply with the classification society and try not to go beyond that too much, but, for example, when it comes to the anchor, we often use heavier anchors than are recommended from classification as from personal experience, I know how important it is. Another example is the wetness of the forward deck: those things you cannot study: you have to do it by feeling and there is no instruction manual on how to create a dry bow or a wet bow. There is nothing compared to practical experience. You do it by feeling. Capella project designed by Ginton and in-build at Yildiz2. There were a few milestones that helped me along the way. One of them was the 48-metre motor yacht called Elsa (previously named Grace), but unfortunately she was a total loss on the rocks in Saba. They were not at anchor, they were on a sinker which apparently was too light for them. Actually, the owner of this boat told me when we started: there is no budget, I don’t want stabilisers but I want a comfortable boat and so we played with the beam until the boat was just about compliant with the rules for cargo ships because at the time, she was registered as a cargo ship. The owner told me that after years of chartering in Norway, he never once missed the stabilisers. It all went very well until he wanted to sell the boat, as no one wanted a boat without stabilisers and to add them at that late stage was a difficult task, but eventually he did sell her. It’s unfortunate how it ended. ElsaA second milestone was the 2006 Metsuyan IV - a 36-metre we did with CBI Navi - this was an exceptionally nice project. Once these milestones were completed, we went on to do six projects in Moscow by Timmerman Yachts and another six boats in Ukraine. Later we did many boats in Turkey and are still very busy there, as well as in Holland, mainly with Van der Valk and with Mulder, and workboats with de Haas Maasluis. Metsuyan IV yacht leaving Monaco Photo: Merijn de Waard / SuperYacht Times

3. About half of our work is what we have designed ourselves. The other half we get from styling designers like Guido de Groot, Cor de Rover and others. Shipyards make up 50% of our client-base such as Mengi Yay, who we work very harmoniously with and with whom we have completed nine boats since 2009. The very first boat with them was the successful 41-metre motor yacht My Steel and a repeat order immediately followed. The latest was the 44m Virtus which was launched last year and has already been sold. With Mulder shipyard we did the naval architecture for 13 boats, including the 30-metre A Squared as well as the 22-metre Fairwind, and followed with six boats with the same hull over the years. Van Der Valk shipyard has assigned us for the naval architecture of eight yachts including the 37-metre Santa Maria T and the fast boat series called ‘Beachclub.’ Virtus yacht runningPhoto: Pozitif StudioVirtus yacht anchoredPhoto: Pozitif Studio4. We don’t tend to experiment with new hull shapes and we are reserved with adopting new trends without recognising the side effects. For example, when it started to become fashionable to adopt a straight bow, we recognised the advantages of the longer waterline and more space at the bow, however, this also has two drawbacks. One is that the anchor chain may touch the stem when swinging on anchor and the other is the wetness of the bow deck. Whilst the anchor is a drawback one should just accept, the wetness of the deck could be improved scientifically by adding a pronounced spray rail above the waterline, and obviously, having a high bow also contributes. Santa Maria T exterior design5. The 31.2-metre CCN boat Vanadis was the first time we did a hybrid with a pod drive on board. We needed to facilitate the space in the engine room for the electrical system and so we created one small generator room at the bow and one engine room at the stern. One big advantage of this setup is that you don’t need to put the accommodation at the point of the bow but it starts a few metres behind the collision bulkhead where the boat is much wider. The pod drive has its own advantages compared to a conventional propeller, as the propellor is directed to the stream, whereas with the conventional propellor you have a shaft angle which is not the natural position in relation to the stream, so you have less vibration and higher efficiency as a consequence. With Vanadis, we were the winners of the Boat International Design & Innovation ‘Eco Award‘ this year. Vanadis yacht anchoredPhoto: Cerri Cantieri NavaliVanadis yacht interiorPhoto: Cerri Cantieri Navali6. I think it is impossible to predict the future of the industry, but taking into account what’s happening for us now, it looks positive. Under construction we have a 42-metre sloop with Mengi Yay, which is very much our style. Also, the 41-metre M55 at Yildiz Shipyard will be launched this year alongside the 43-metre Sunrise, which was delivered to her owner at the end of December. In the Netherlands, we are involved in an extension of a large yacht and we are also refitting a 50-metre Russian/East German fish factory boat called Kaspryba built in 1992 in East Germany which will become a geological research vessel. The process is very similar when working on both a yacht and a commercial vessel. That said, we do not identify too much with supersonic boats and styling is not our major activity. Good seaworthy boats are what you can expect from us. M55 yachtPhoto: GintonM55 yachtPhoto: Ginton

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