By Marco Dainelli

This project was born some time ago in the one of the most beautiful places of our beloved Italy, standing in the wonderful Pozzuoli Gulf, inspired even by the nature, the sea and the beautiful things that surrounded our vision… and our dreams of course.
Italy is said to be a country with people of Saints, artists and navigators, but even greater of dreamers able to dream along further!

Soffio 31

Soffio 31

Maybe because of our nature, curiosity and passion we started to think about the marvellous idea to obtain something different in the world of rib boats, and just in front of the sea we started to blow out many different ideas, concepts and instincts focused on shapes, material choice, technology and combination of composites solutions. The goal was only one... to build one of the fastest, most stable and efficient rib ever made. We imagined our Rib even since starting as a model and our vision was to make a hull shape able to fly over the water with the minimum hydrodynamic impact but without loosing stability and also to curve safely, cutting the waves like a sharp knife.

The target was to ride fast without adding weight and to distribute the weight on the right place to get the perfect balance.
Furthermore, we wanted it to ride fast easily with the most powered engine on board as well as with the minimum power, to reduce the glide effect during the navigation even at high speed, and to ride safely. It was an ideal combination with the best results.

Polynt Composites was the partner for all the chemicals like gel coats, resins and vinylester resins.

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For the surface finish we used a tooling vinylester green gel coat that offers thermal stability and the right hardness and smoothness to the surface. The system that guarantee the best dimensional stability and no deformation after resin crosslinking was the Polynt Composite Optiplus for hand lay-up technology, with "0" shrinkage and even better stability than epoxy.
The two moulds, deck and Hull structures was realized by using the Infusion Optiplus system in combination with glass fiber multiaxial type.The two moulds have vinylester finish gel coat and absolutely perfect dimensional stability, fits and copy perfectly the masters shapes.

Once realized these structures was the time for the composite structure for the deck and our concept to save weight above the water line in order to obtain the best navigation asset during the ride.For the resin matrix was used a Toughened vinylester modified resin Polynt PCCR 138-40-40, which is a new generation resin formulated to resist to impact without causing micro-fractures and delamination problem in the composite, so with an excellent fatigue resistance even better than epoxy resin system. The resin is also modified to allow a good adhesion with carbon fiber and fiberglass too respect standard vinylester resin. This means better mechanical load transmission to the fibers and less stress generated in the resin matrix. This is very important in order to have a very strong and though structure to prevent damages during the ride above the sea waves and to resist the big highest impact generated by the speed over the sea.

The technology chosen for the rib composite construction was Infusion with toughened vinylester resin, which assures the best ratio Fiber/matrix, lightness and stiffness to the critic points and areas.

Soffio Fast Rib 31

This powerboat is composed by three basic components: deck, hull and engine covers. Tn order to save weight and increase performance we used a special modified epoxy vinylester resin toughened (Polynt PCCR 138-40-40)

Infusion Process with Vinylester toughened resin
Polynt PCCR 138-40-40

This resin ensure excellent mechanical properties, adhesion to the different fibers, and toughness and fatigue resistance in race condition reducing the problems due to the stress failure in the composites parts.
The materials involved are: toughened vinylester resin, fiberglass fabrics, carbon fibers fabrics and hybrid fibers, core synthetic materials

The process is an optimized infusion with controlled temperature in order to allow perfectly the infusion of a medium high viscosity resin. In this way we have a resin with less reactive solvent and excellent adhesion to the reinforcement fibers, less shrinkage during polymerization and enhanced toughness.

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The workshop and mold were heated at 35°C during infusion and resin curing process.

The core honeycomb pattern ensure a very easily flow, perfect fiber wet out with less resin amount in the final composite.
No post curing process is required.
We obtain a structure that is «green» in terms of carbon foot print, with energy saving during the process and even in the race condition.
The rib goes faster with no excessive power, optimal stability and balance, fuel saving and very low emission/pollution.

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Hull composite Production

For the hull composite structure, was used carbon fibers and fiberglass in combination of high density PET honeycomb core.

Even in this case infusion technology was used to have a stiff structure and very rich of fiber content. The resin is the same grade toughened and modified to improve carbon and fiberglass wet out and adhesion.

With the enhanced adhesion the resin toughness is the key to obtain a composite very resistant to mechanical stress and the force of the sea even when the hull bite on the waves with very high speed and impact.

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Soffio 31

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Engine Carbon Covers

This Carbon Cover saves more than 20 kg respect the original one.

It is made in Infusion technology with special Vinylester resin Distitron VE 104, modified for better adhesion to carbon fiber, improved fiber wet out and mechanical performances.

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The advantage is to save weight above water line and increase overall performances due to the flat asset during race.

The use of composite permits the unique design and the shape of the airbox structure in order to enhance the breathing and power of the engines.

All the air ducts are made by carbon composite ad re-designed in order to save weight and improve the performances.

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Some successes and victories of Soffio 31

2013 Turopean Marathon Cup Class C
Italian Marathon Championship Class C Greek Rib Cup

2014 TIM Long distance record Napoli-Capri

2015 Tinner of the lap Salerno-Formia in Venice-Montecarlo Race Contest

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...keep Ribbing!