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The 52-foot yawl Dorade was a defining point in Olin’s career. Designed for his father in 1929, Dorade was a revolutionary boat with narrow beam, a deep keel, and an efficient rig for sailing to windward. In 1931 Dorade won the trans-Atlantic race from Newport, Rhode Island to Plymouth, England by a dramatic margin, finishing two days ahead of larger boats. Olin sailed as skipper with his father, brother and four friends. They went on to win the Fastnet Race before returning to New York, where they were welcomed by the mayor with a ticker-tape parade up Broadway. In 1933 Rod returned to England on Dorade to win the Fastnet Race again. The success of Dorade brought many clients to S&S. Olin’s designs dominated ocean racing for the next 50 years, not only in the United States but throughout the world. Many of these boats are still actively sailed.

Rod joined S&S in 1933 and the two brothers worked as an efficient team thereafter. Throughout the 1930s they designed a wide variety of boats. Several evolutionary developments from Dorade were winners in the Bermuda Race, Fastnet Race, and 1935 trans-Atlantic Race. For the America’s Cup races in 1937 Olin was invited to collaborate with Starling Burgess designing Ranger, a breakthrough boat which defeated the British challenger in four straight races. Ranger was the last of the J-boats, 134 feet long overall with a displacement of 165 tons and 7500 square feet of sail area. She was built by Bath Iron Works in Maine. Olin and Rod were members of her racing crew.

In 1933 Olin began a momentous collaboration with Professor Kenneth Davidson of Stevens Institute of Technology. Davidson was developing techniques for testing small-scale models of sailing hulls, initially in the swimming pool at Stevens and later in a small towing tank. Correlations with the performance of full-scale boats required measurements of the drag and lateral (lift) hydrodynamic forces on the model, and of the corresponding aerodynamic forces on the sails. Olin and Rod made full-scale measurements on the sloop Gimcrack, and Davidson analyzed this data to derive aerodynamic force coefficients for the sails. Olin made shrewd use of these results



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