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Welcome to Bray Yacht Design And Research...Making Dreams Come True Since 1974

Our clients come to us with their hopes and dreams for a ship that will meet their specific needs. Our task is to take those dreams and combine them with experienced, knowledgeable design to create a vessel that will exceed their expectations. Safety, performance, and comfort are key factors in the design. Working closely with the client ensures that the vessel reflects their personal choices as well as including the most technologically advanced design features. Our team of design professionals will be happy to meet with you to learn your requirements and evaluate how best to bring together your needs and our skills to give you the vessel of your dreams.

Once your design is under way, we can assist you in the selection of a builder, and supervise construction of your vessel until launch. Also available is model testing of the design to confirm desired parameters, such as sea keeping abilities, speed and powering requirements. After launch, sea trial supervision and testing to confirm stability parameters are also available.

Designing boats has never been an exact science-it still contains a bit of art and magic blended with the technology. To confirm that the blend of art and science are working the way they should, much of our work is tested with both open water and test tank model tests. Scrutinized and evaluated, the vessel is put through its paces at the model stage to ensure optimum performance once built and to avoid potential disappointments. Once the results are in, the design is optimized, and construction of the vessel can proceed with total confidence.

Patrick J. Bray
Naval Architect

New Construction Projects - What To Expect When You Commission A Custom Vessel Design

Our business is custom yacht design. Our motto is "making dreams come true". We do this by working closely with you, the client, to produce a design that meets your exact needs. We then work with your builder or we will put you in touch with one of the many builders that we know to produce your vessel to the level of quality that you are looking for. We have done this numerous times for vessels built in Singapore, Brazil, Chile, all over North America, as well as yards in Europe and Eastern Europe.

If you want a more utilitarian explorer yacht to a mid-level finish we know yards that can do that. If you want a show stopping, gold plated superyacht, we know yards that can do that. We can also work with award winning stylists to produce a unique look and stunning interior if that is your desire.

Styling by Ken Freivokh

Price for the build is dependent upon those choices. I like to use a car analogy. If you want a Rolls Royce quality then we will need to go to a high quality European yard with its associated price tag. If you are looking more for a Cadillac or Mercedes fit and finish, then there are yards that provide that level too. As nice as it would be, you cannot get a super cheap price from a lesser known yard and expect to get the highest possible quality. You will get what you pay for. However a well-planned, well-thought-out design can save you the entire design fee in reducing the build costs by making the build fast and efficient to put together. When you have to start tearing out and rebuilding areas not planned is when it really gets expensive.

As a rule of thumb, yacht build prices can be estimated by dollars per pound of vessel weight:

$20.00 US per pound - pretty much work boat finish and nothing fancy in interior fit out or equipment.

$25.00 US per pound - average middle of the road, good fit and finish with good equipment.

$30.00 US per pound - superior work from a well-known yard.

$35.00+ US per pound - top quality work from some of the best yards in the world. If you want an international award winner, then this is where you need to be.

These prices do not include the design fee, brokerage fee, or project management fees. The design fee will be approximately 5-7% of the build cost. Unless you have already contacted a broker for a referral then most likely a broker will not be required in the custom build process. Broker's fees are generally 5 - 10% of the finished selling price. Project management fees are similar to broker's fees.

A project manager is of real value as the level of quality goes up. In a top quality project, an experienced project manager is a must in order to achieve a smoothly-run build and a successful outcome.

First steps - Stage 1 of the design. For an initial fee (generally $15,000.00, depending on vessel size) we will complete a preliminary profile and interior layout with a hull based on our proven technology. We will provide you with a 2D color artist's rendering of your vessel and some preliminary specifications. With this information established we can begin to talk with various builders to see who would be interested in building and what sort of ballpark price they can offer. (Additional, more detailed design drawings will be needed by most yards before they will proceed to sign a build contract; these will be produced as part of the second stage.) You can then decide if a new build vessel is in your budget, and move on to Stage 2; the full design. This will give you all the drawings and calculations necessary to build your yacht, and may include liaising with the classification society of your choice to certify the vessel. Build time will be 20 - 30 months. Stage 3 covers updating of the drawings during construction, supervision of construction if desired, or build-coordination with the project manager, and final stability testing of the vessel if required for classification or certification.

Not to be overly negative, but there are relatively few "real deals" out there. If the pricing sounds too good to be true - then it probably is! Keep your expectations realistic. We are here to work with you through the bid process. We have been in this industry for over 30 years and have extensive contacts throughout the world. The process of building a new vessel can be very exciting and rewarding; and in the end you will get exactly what you are looking for in performance, quality, finish, and price.

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