When the Italian state built pleasure boats. Bora 103 (10 m) – Classic Boat


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Italcantieri Bora 103

As the 1960s drew to a close, Italcantieri, a state-owned company, designed and built a boat that was destined to become a classic example of the goodness of Italian shipbuilding. This is the Bora 103, a great little fiberglass project rich in insights, quality and balance of form. Equipped with a flybridge, two cabins and ample deck space, it immediately reveals itself to be a 10-meter with great qualities. Inevitably, a Classic Boat.

Italcantieri Bora 103

Characteristic for the Italian scene in 1968, the Bora 103 was born from design as a boat equipped with a flybridge, an almost unprecedented solution, as the trend leaned toward the application of fly only in second moments, inspired by American standards. A detail that proves to be important for Italcantieri, which thus has a way, right from the start, to develop a hull that is as spacious on the outside as it is on the inside. This also benefits the lines, which are thus balanced rather than supplemented by successive superstructures. But let’s look in more detail at this piece of Italian boating history.

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Italcantieri Bora 103
Italcantieri Bora 103

Italcantieri – Historical background

The Bora series is an example of pleasure boats made by a state-owned shipyard, Italcantieri. The Monfalcone shipyard, however, was already a well-known entity in Italy, among the oldest in the country and engaged on a large scale in the construction of mercantile and military projects.

The Bora series was born, thus, from merchant-derived teachings. In ’59, in fact, the shipyard was commissioned to build fiberglass lances to equip the ships it built. A new material and technological innovation, which Italcantieri treasured, applying know-how and experience, precisely, on the pleasure craft front. Thus the Bora series was born, and in 1968, to replace the Bora 3 and Bora 4 (now dated in line and hull), the Bora 103 also saw the light of day.

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Italcantieri Bora 103 – Exteriors

Designed for small and medium cruising, the Bora 103 was a rational and efficient 10-meter powerboat. The configuration is as follows: large cockpit, partially protected by the fly, from which to access both the fly and the saloon, from which it is separated by a glass window. On the fly, small by our standards but then canonical, there is room for external wheelhouse and seating, while, forward, a large double sundeck provided an enviable forward lounge area.

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Italcantieri Bora 103 – Interior

Turning instead to the interior, the square looks like an airy and well-lit space, equipped with several opening windows to promote air recirculation. Here, to the left, the spaces offer a cabinet intended for dishes, and recessed with this is also the interior wheelhouse, essential yet functional at the same time. To starboard, however, a sofa can be converted into a bunk while, a folding table makes the space usable as a dining area.

Italcantieri Bora 103 – Pianetti according to a vintage advertising brochure

Three single steps then lead down to the sleeping area, which consists, on the port side, of a guest cabin with two bunk berths and hangers, and, on the starboard side, of a convenient galley and a double-access bathroom (facing the corridor and master cabin). Finally, in the bow is the spacious master cabin with two V-shaped berths.

Italcantieri Bora 103 – Construction

The Italcantieri system by which the entire Bora series was built, thus including the 103, and involved the use of modular molds capable of avoiding joints between the hull, deck and deckhouse, made of fiberglass. The hull was then reinforced at the bottom by polyvinyl chloride foam spars, covered with fiberglass-reinforced polyester, and built in sandwich. The deck, on the other hand, all made of fiberglass, was completed with teak trim. The hull, also made of fiberglass, is a classic deep V shape, with three longitudinal skids on each side, a solution that ensured, despite inefficient consumption, good sailing performance.

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Technical Specs

Length Over All (LOA) 10.30 m
Baglio Massimo 3.35 m
Full Load Immersion 0.65 m
Vacuum Displacement 5,000 kg
Motorizations 2x Perkins 160 hp

2x GM 6V-53N 216 hp.

2x 220 hp Aifo (Fiat IOM)

Maximum speed (2x GM 216 hp) 23 kn
Cruising speed 21 kn
Economic cruising speed 18 kn
Fuel tank 2x 400L
Fresh water tank 200 lt then 320 lt
Sleeping places 5
Construction site Italcantieri


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