Hydrofoil speedboat “Volga”
by “Valga Craft”
Rostislav Alexeyev – from idea to creation
Starting from the late 19th century many outstanding engineers have undertaken multiple attempts to create a hydrofoil speedboat. Some of them were successful, others failed.
1916 is the year when an eminent personality arrived into this world. He was destined to become a great Russian engineer and to bring into life unique inventions at the junction of aviation and shipbuilding industries – the reason why his portrait is now can be found in the US Congress Hall of Fame.
How could an ordinary Soviet developer manage to provoke a revolution in the sphere that became his whole life? Why his inventions astonished the aviation and shipbuilding leading figures?
His name was Rostislav Alexeyev, and he was obsessed by speed, vessels and yachts drawing, carrying out various tests and experiments. In 1941 Rostislav defended a graduation thesis regarding “Hydrofoil speedboat “; it was then that the world first heard about the boat that would seriously leverage into the shipbuilding history.
His idea was based on a certain interesting effect related to a partial immersion of the wing into the water (it was later called “Alexeyev effect”). He came to a conclusion that the smaller surface contact area of the vessel with water, the bigger is the speed of motion on the water surface at the equally used drive capacity.
In August 1957 there happened an event being one of the most important in Alexeyev’s life, as well as in the global shipbuilding history. As a result of a long-term development and tests that cost incredible efforts and resources, the first USSR passenger boat was launched. The vessel had 30-passenger capacity but it was remodeled for 64-66 seats at a later stage (depending on the version).
“Raketa-1” appearance caused a real furore in Moscow at the opening of the International Festival of Youth and Students. This holiday was marked as an extremely high-profile and mass event for the youth of the whole world, and for Soviet young men and ladies, in particular, being able to gather 34000 guests from over 131 countries in Moscow at a time.
The boat looked outside of the box for that epoch. And an insolent plan arose in the head of its creator – unauthorized demonstration of the passenger speedboat to Nikita Khrushchev (the Secretary General of the Central Committee of the USSR Communist Party). Heading at full speed directly from the factory-producer «Krasnoe Sormovo» to Moscow, Alexeyev moored “Raketa” next to Khrushchev and offered him to have a ride.
Needless to say, “Raketa” conquered Khrushchev’s favor by its super speed and attractiveness, and, being under the impression he laid the foundation to a large batch production of the entire hydrofoil speedboat dynasty.
The rushing production of the passenger speedboats started gaining unbelievable popularity. These vessels could now compete with other types of transport due to the following parameters: speed, design, comfort, cost efficiency. Eventually, the USSR became the owner of the biggest hydrofoil speedboat fleet in the world.
The evolution of the hydrofoil speedboats produced by the genius constructor goes on; and in 1958 there was implemented the project of the next shipbuilding masterpiece – hydrofoil speedboat “Volga”.
The first demonstration of “Volga” took place at the Exhibition of the Soviet Union Economic Achievements, and its high-volume output started in 1959. By the way, according to Alexeyev, exactly the high-volume output of the engineer’s product is the criteria of his genuineness.
In 1958 the vessel merited Golden Medal at the famous Brussels International Exhibition. After the boom that “Volga” caused at the above-mentioned event in Belgium, it gave rise to its large-scale exportation to all the continents. The secret of its popularity was quite simple: high speed, excellent quality, low fuel consumption, and extremely attractive design.
Taking place somewhere between navigation and aviation, “Volga” got the best from both areas. It embodied the combination of innovative approach in the manufacturing technology, and application of the up-to-date materials from aviation industry. The vessel construction involved using aluminum-magnesium alloy (Al-Mg) never yet seen at that time. This alloy was used in aircraft manufacturing and was distinguished by such properties like high durability, good plasticity and corrosion resistance.
The boat shell was riveted as in an airplane. Due to these rivets, the shell could carry big loads; however, it was light because of Al-Mg it was made of. All these things ensured successful long-term operation of the fabricated speedboat.
Exclusive models for VIPs
Time goes by but there is something that doesn’t change. People of high standing still prefer not to ignore their privileges and to take advantage of the best quality things.
The output of exclusive hydrofoil speedboat models customized for Soviet VIPs was quite an ordinary fact. Shipbuilding factories released special edition hydrofoil boats for General Secretaries of the Communist Party N. Khrushchev and L.Brezhnev.
Moreover, “Volga” vessels were granted to the US President R.Nixon and Egyptian President G.Naser, as well as to the General Secretary of the Cuban Communist Party F.Castro.
Worth mentioning that “Volga” was being performed in 2 variants:
• Ordinary model: including drive from Soviet car GAZ and the propeller-drive shaft system
• Special edition of elite class models for Communist Party members and other high-ranking people has Volvo-Penta coming with the same name diesel drive 3,6 l.
What makes hydrofoil speedboat unique?
The hydrofoil speed boat construction makes it really one of a kind. Nowadays the similar format vessel could not be repeated by any of the Design-Engineering department or Shipbuilding yard.
All genius things are simple, aren’t they? You are to decide.
Hydrofoil speedboat rises from water surface at high speed at the expense of lifting power created by the wings providing distinct stability to the boat motion.
No hydrodynamic or frontal water resistance enables the vessel to build up high speed without causing any discomfort to the passengers. Thanks to unique wing construction, namely because it is water logged still staying immersed, any small wave protects the passengers from such an unpleasant effect like minor vertical oscillation.
At high-speed exit the water resistance is reduced, and the boat leaves the water displacement mode and goes over to gliding on wing mode ensuring to save fuel consumption.
Special wings construction is performed using high quality and super durable stainless steel helping the vessel to:
• perfectly stick to ship heading and stay above water even at low speed (from 32 km/hour)
• maintain vertical and horizontal stability
• ensure security and reliability during motion.
The aesthetic qualities were still very important at designing the speedboat. The vessel creator attributed great importance to his “child” appearance.
It’s worth noting that the design of the 50-60th of the last century was distinguished by “Stalinist Empire” style. Machine-building specialists were not ready for Alexeyev’s high requirements and standards. So the hydrofoil speedboats designers had to live up to his expectations by permanent improvement of ergonomic and performance characteristics.
The “Volga” model has experienced several modifications in its life: from classical “drop” form to more of a V-shaped restyling (edgewise). Herewith the designers never avoided using decorating elements that were considered in details, like moldings or special wings on the shell. These wings, by the way, were both decorative and functional. All those details ensured exceptional stylish look.
Hydrofoil speed boat “in modern processing”
The “Valga Craft” company representatives inspired by the beauty and elegance of the hydrofoil speedboat and bowing to a genius of the great engineer Alexeyev, decided to revive his masterpiece in 4 unique variants of performance demonstrated on our web-site:
- Classic. The vessel is executed in classic style considering all the modern requirements. Excellent comfort and attractive look of the boat are reached as a result of using the latest achievements in the engineering and design.
- Aluminum. The model is completely performed in aviation style: in riveted aluminum, with covered cock-pit. Aerodynamic design and no excess details provide major elegance of the vessel.
- Stealth & Woven – a remarkable example of classic modern style with the use of forward-looking technologies. The special attention is compelled by unusual performance of the deck: finishing by sipo solid wood in combination with aluminum and maple wood. These design versions of “Volga” allow any client to choose the model that would meet his personal requirements and preferences.
About “Valga Craft” services
We receive new shells of “Volga” speed boats (produced the USSR in the seventies) from reserve storage. After receiving them, we carry out the special processing of the shell and it’s covering by all the necessary materials in order to conserve aluminum and ensure the long-term service.
Afterwards, we completely fill the boat with the of the latest-generation equipment. The heart of the vessel is the drive Mercruiser mpi 4.3l with the like-named stern drive.
Our finishing materials quality
In the process of our speedboat construction, we only use the highest quality marine enamels and paints of the brands like Alexseal Yacht Coating, Awlgrip and International. The deck of the boat is covered by 24 layers of polyurethane enamel providing distinct reflectiveness.
Moreover, we opt only for selective types of wood for finishing works. For deck and cockpit finish, and for all the furniture manufacturing we use exceptionally solid redwood of the species “mahogany sipo”.
We are the only ones who dared and succeeded in producing the furniture completely from red wood resulting in luxurious design and making it look holistically due to a perfect combination of deck design and cockpit content.
Speedboat filling with innovations
After visiting “Valga Craft” master hands the speed boats “Volga” represent the ideal balance of grace, gloss, outstanding modern comfort and high speed.
You may not even try to find analogues worldwide, as they just don’t exist. The speedboat may not only be used for sail sings, but also for riding and towing of the skier and wakeboarder thanks to its advantage not to list waves behind the vessel.
The “stuffing” of our boats for sale:
– newest electrics
– up-to-date equipment (for example, it has a fridge now that was not available originally)
– advanced navigational system
– satellite radio with high-quality stereo system equipped with Bluetooth
What you need hydrofoil speed boat for
You can enjoy all the advantages of the luxury high speed boat, without concerning about the security and comfort.
You may use the boat for ordinary sail sings, water sports, and participation in various maritime competitions, like even America’s Cup or Redbull Avia Show.
«Volga» on personal order
We guarantee the highest quality of our services and consider all the preferences and requirements of our Customers. “Valga Craft” is ready to breathe an absolutely new life into the Soviet times hydrofoil speedboat under the Customer’s order within 6-8 months period.
Would you like to appreciate the Soviet reliability and our finishing quality, still staying up-to-date and meeting the advanced technologies in the shipbuilding industry? Exclusive model of the boat by “Valga Craft” will not only be your hobby, it will also become the striking symbol of your status and source of pride. There are just a few of those who can boast of the same acquisition.
Elegance + comfort + speed = “Volga”
If you consider yourself to be the real connoisseur of the beauty which allows you not only enjoy its aesthetic properties but also take advantage of the unique comfort and high speed, the hydrofoil speedboat of a luxury class is exactly what you need!
Do you want your vessel to become a spotlight? All you have to do is to pass into planning mode. The moment of emergence astonishes everyone who becomes its witness so that people on the shore can’t take their eyes off this mindblowing action. And exactly the moment when you kinglike slip away above the water surface, amazing everyone by the beauty and grace of your boat you will understand that it was not purchased in vain.
Our customers are our value. We highly appreciate every potential or actual Customer and we do approach to him as to VIP. That’s why if you have any questions/inquiries/doubts, etc., whether you are our Client or not, feel free to contact us anytime.
The price of our works is agreed with every Client personally as each project needs individual approach, taking in consideration all the preferences and technical details.
LUXORY MEETS PERFORMANCE
Made from certified 1200 year old Oak.
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