Lexicon: Gorbon 53 Deck Salon


In 2005 Mr. Randy Phelps, a lifelong sailer, was seeking a good performance, high quality, but not-so-traditional cruising sailboat. His criteria included a deck salon arrangement, quality equal to the Hinkley Little Harbor 42, high performance with offshore capability, two comfortable staterooms with two heads, good performance under power, and an easily managed sail plan. In addition he was looking for pleasing lines, a comfortable cockpit with good visibility, ability to cruise at 10 knots while under power, a comfortable guest cabin, a main salon with visibility while sitting and standing, an interior helm station with good visibility, reasonable draft and construction that met ABYC-ABS-USCG codes.

Failing to find a used yacht that meet his specifications, he decided to go for a new build. He settled on Gorbon Yachts of Turkey to design and build his dream boat. Gorbon Yachts is mostly known for building high quality performance racing and cruising sailboats. Since the mid 60’s they have designed and built, in-house, many custom high performance sailing yachts. They are the first builder in Turkey to use cold molded techniques and the first to build in composite using today’s high tech materials such as carbon fiber, Kevlar and e-glass.

As luck would have it, Gorbon already had something on their drawing board that was very close to what he was looking for, and in no time the preliminary drawings, specs and pricing were delivered.

Hull construction

Hull construction

The cockpit was designed with twin helms that provide exceptional visibility not only around, but through the pilothouse. The unique cockpit design placed the helm stations forward of the guest seating, and also features a full sized door that allows entry into the pilothouse on the same level as the cockpit. No washboards, no bridgedecks, no steep stairs to climb down!

Designing the cockpit

In 2007 Randy was able to visit the Gorbon facility in Tuzla, just outside of Instanbul, Turkey - a mecca for mega yacht construction in Europe. Refinements were completed on the salon door, communication center layout, keel design and cockpit.

She was named "Red Feather" with her distinctive red hull and delivered to Portland, ME where her 220 hp Yanmar, mast and rigging were installed. Final cost came to over $1.5 million USD. Years later, she was donated to the charity AMI Kids who renamed her "Origami" and kept her for 3 years, repainting the hull to a pristine white in November of 2018.

Red Feather

Intrigued by her listing, Scott & Wendy Wurtele flew down to Florida in November. Although she suffered from obvious neglect, we could visualize her potential, loved her layout, and were pleased with the quality of her construction. We purchased "Origami" in January of 2020 and re-christened her "Lexicon".

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