Shearwater 45 by Dudley Dix

GRP or wood classic cruiser

Length overall49' 5"15.05 m
Length on deck44' 3"13.5 m
Waterline length37' 5"11.4 m
Beam13'4 m
Draft6' 3"1.9 m
Berths4 - 6
Ballast weight10472 lbs4750 kg
Displacement27557 lbs12500 kg
Sail area1144 sq. ft.106.25 m2
Engine power50 - 60 (inboard)
Hull construction Foam sandwich
See also Shearwater 39



A cruiser to be proud of

  • Admired wherever she goes
  • Grace, space and pace
  • Cutter or schooner
  • Timeless appeal = resale value
  • Cruise anywhere in comfort
  • Too Big? See the Shearwater 39

The Shearwater 39 has become a classic among cruising designs. For over a decade it was unrivalled as the prettiest production yacht built in South Africa, yet it has a surprising turn of speed combined with its good looks and handling qualities. Over 20 boats have been built to this design and it has developed a reputation unequalled in this country.

Now it has a rival. The Shearwater 45 has the same qualities, taken up into the next size bracket.

Powerful Cutter or Elegant Schooner

Construction is GRP sandwich using Airex core in the hull and balsa in the deck. Detailing is as for the 39 to maintain the family ties.

The hull has a clipper bow, substantial sheer and slight tumblehome aft fairing into a radiused champagne glass stern, good to look at from any angle. The underbody is clean and undistorted with a fine entry, easy midship section and powerful stern. The keel is a moderately long fin and comprises a lead casting bolted to a moulded GRP stub. The stub forms a large sump for collection of bilge water. Characteristics follow the traditions of the smaller sister for performance, easy motion and good manners on all points of sail.

The layouts shown are just two of the many options drawn to date. All layouts are based on the mid-engine position with the U-shaped galley positioned over the engine. The benefits are a galley which is easily worked in safety without having to tie in the cook and the best possible engine access for maintenance.

Layouts are generally to sleep 4 to 6 in two or three private cabins. Sleeping cabins have been kept compact to give more space over to the living areas of the boat.

Sailing rigs are a powerful cutter (in the image of the smaller 39) for all-round performance or a more costly but more easily handled staysail schooner. The schooner rig is traditional North American in appearance, with heavily raked masts. As is normal for schooners, it will be at its best from a fetch to a broad reach.

In a design review of the Shearwater 39, Robert Perry, that master of the traditional profile, wrote that the boat "is very beautiful from the stern quarter" and "is a very handsome vessel". In the design of the Shearwater 45, we have preserved those characteristics and others which have endeared her smaller sister to so many. As an investment boat of reasonable size and longlasting worldwide appeal her concept can hardly be bettered.

Schooner rig
Interior layouts
Interior layouts
Hull section
Hull section

See also

Design Length Beam Sail area Engine power Compare
Shearwater 39 by Dudley Dix
GRP, aluminum or timber Classic Cruiser
39' 4"
12 m
12' 10"
3.9 m
842 sq. ft.
78.20 m2
35 - 50

Boats about same size as Shearwater 45

Coquette 39   Coquette 39
GRP, timber or plywood sloop

LOA: 39' 4"/12 m   compare
  Shearwater 39
GRP, aluminum or timber Classic Cruiser

LOA: 39' 4"/12 m   compare
Didi 40cr   Didi 40cr
Radius chine plywood cruiser racer

LOA: 39' 7"/12.07 m   compare

Questions? Suggestions? Contact us at: