Foredeck and Forepeak
Special attention has been paid to the ability to set and retrieve heavy ground tackle on the Fleming 55. The fiberglass anchor platform is equipped with a Lofrans horizontal windlass with separate capstan and gypsy for 3/8" Hi-Test chain. The windlass has a plug-in remote control as well as controls in the pilothouse and on the flying bridge. Double sets of grooved rollers make it possible to self-launch and stow two anchors. These features eliminate the need to wrestle with potentially hazardous chain and anchors. Hose bibs for salt and fresh water are located next to the anchor platform, and there are deck lockers to port and starboard.
A lock-down hatch on the foredeck provides convenient access to the forepeak, which is separated from the rest of the yacht by a collision bulkhead. It has an area for storage of chain and a separate ventilated rope locker. Each features a bitter end fitting. The forepeak drains directly overboard and can be hosed down without concerns that water will contaminate the bilges.
The flared bow turns aside green water and provides a forward deck of unusually generous proportions. The teak handrail has been brought inboard of the sloping bulwarks for convenience and security. To prevent streaking of the hull, the deck scuppers are piped down to the boot stripe, rather than being allowed to drain directly overboard.
Further protection against heavy weather is provided by the design of the Portuguese bridge. There is comfortable seating on its forward side, which is also the location for the forward shore inlets. There is ample storage for fender and lines inside ventilated lockers accessed from the aft side of the Portuguese Bridge and double doors close off the forward deck areas from the side and bridge decks creating a safe area for small children. There are sturdy, stainless steel handrails around the forward face of the pilothouse and down both side decks.
Easy stairs with handrails designed for both adults and children lead down to the wide and well-protected side-decks, which run down both sides of the boat. Here you will find cleats and chocks for forward and aft spring lines. The inward-opening bulwark doors make for easy and safe boarding.
Aft Deck and Swim Platform
With an area of approximately 250 sq ft. the Fleming 55 aft deck is unusually large. Being all at one level, it becomes an extension of the saloon and provides ample space for chairs, donning scuba gear or fishing. The fiberglass skirt around the edge of the wide teak coaming conceals mood lighting and hides the engine-room air intakes where they are well-protected from salt-laden spray.
Shower fittings for hot and cold water, located next to the inward-opening transom door, are conveniently placed for use while standing on the swim platform. Stainless steel handrails on the transom and a swim ladder, which can be deployed by a person in the water, provide safety and convenience.
Access to the upper boat deck is via a stainless steel ladder and a sliding hatch in the overhead. Access into the lazarette is through lockable hatches, with safe and stylish curved corners. Available as options are a console for cockpit controls and a locker, which can be equipped with a basin and faucets.
The Fleming 55 low-profile flying bridge is spacious and packed with practical amenities. Its double helmseat, with folding stainless steel footrest, folds forward to access storage beneath it. The control console has full engine instrumentation and ample room for electronics. Access to and from the pilothouse is by a protected internal companionway directly from the pilothouse, avoiding the need to navigate perilous steps or ladders where a slip could result in a fall over the side. A wrap-around venturi windshield with stainless steel handrail provides protection from wind and weather.
There is seating for eight guests close to, but out of the way of, the helm station. A fiberglass table is standard and an ingenious pass-thru "dumbwaiter" eliminates the need to carry refreshments up from the galley. Aft of the seating area is the separate boat deck for yacht tender and davit. From here, a ladder provides direct access to the lower aft deck.
A new, popluar option is the upper deck control station that provides the captain with excellent visibility aft. Complete with bow thruster, throttle and gear controls, backing into a tight slip is easier than ever.
The radar arch provides ample room for the full range of antennae required by modern electronic equipment. Navigation lights are installed vertically and parallel to the ship's centerline in full compliance with Colregs.
Main Saloon and Galley
The saloon in the Fleming 55 features a comfortable L-settee with cushions upholstered over wood frames instead of the usual foam cushions on plywood. The sole is hand-laid teak and holly strips, and all built-in furniture is of superior quality joinerwork with rounded corners. There is a hi-lo table of unique design making it suitable for dining and as a coffee table. To starboard is a TV cabinet with pocket doors and space for a DVD player. To port is a bar with icemaker. An optional entertainment center is offered. The saloon opens directly onto the aft deck through double sliding doors. Hand-crafted wood blinds provide privacy and ventilation.
The galley is conveniently located on the same level as the saloon and is properly designed to be used while underway. Either Corian or granite counter tops can be ordered. There are ample storage lockers and drawers, and appliances include a 21 cu. ft. side-by-side fridge/freezer with teak-panel doors and chilled water dispenser; ceramic glass cooktop with practical - yet seldom seen - custom s/s pot-holders; convection microwave; trash compactor and a composite double sink with Grohe faucet and garbage disposer. Space has been provided for an optional dishwasher. A 20-gallon water heater is conveniently located close to the sinks for instant hot water. A pass-through dumbwaiter makes it safe and easy to serve food and drinks to guests on the flying bridge.
Fleming's signature low-profile design is evident even in the interior, as just a few steps lead up to pilothouse and down to the accommodations. Unlike lesser designs, there is no need to go up to the pilothouse and then down to the accommodations level to use the head.
The perfect close to a day of cruising is to retire to a comfortable cabin. The Fleming 55 offers easy access to all the accommodations via a central passage. A separate washer and drier are conveniently located behind a sliding door in this passage.
The master cabin is forward for maximum light and ventilation. It features a tapered queen berth with headboard. The bed lifts on gas springs to access storage for bulky items such as bedding and towels. There are two hanging lockers with teak louvered doors and a TV cabinet with space for DVD player.
The master cabin has an en suite head with Corian or granite countertops and a molded fiberglass shower stall. Grohe faucets are used throughout and feature a thermostatically controlled shower. All heads have pressure-jet Headhunter non-clog toilets, which are unique by having no mechanism downstream of the toilet bowl. These toilets are as easy to operate as any household toilet. A fiberglass holding tank holds 100 gals and has a saltwater flush plus vents to port and starboard with anti-odor filters to provide cross-flow ventilation.
The port guest cabin is offered with either two single or one double bed with headboards. An additional slide-out upper berth with either layout is optional. The aft bulkhead has generous bookshelves. The starboard guest cabin has one lower and one upper, slide-out, upper berth. This cabin can also be offered as an optional office with desk, lockers, bookshelves and space for a computer.
The guest head features a one-piece fiberglass molding and shower stall with bi-fold stainless steel doors. The attractive ceramic basin is set in a Corian or granite countertop. Faucets are Grohe with a thermostatically controlled shower.
Throughout the yacht all lighting features Italian gold-plated fixtures. Teak and holly soles are standard.
The Fleming 55 engine room is meticulously well thought out and provides easy accessibility to every piece of equipment.
A signature feature of the Fleming 55 is its quietness and freedom from vibration. Much of the credit for this lies with the Aquadrive anti-vibration system, which isolates the engine and transmission from the propeller thrust, permitting the use of much softer engine mounts. Aquadrives are fitted as standard on every Fleming and their rotating couplings are concealed beneath fiberglass covers for safety.
Another reason for the quietness of the Fleming is the careful attention paid to sound insulation. Lead/foam insulation is used extensively throughout and all hatches are dogged down on rubber gaskets. There are even double hatches separated by an air space over each engine.
Fuel tanks are made of fiberglass with integrally molded sumps to allow maximum useage of fuel. Vinylester resin is used in their construction on the interior and fire-retardant resin in the outer layers. The fuel system has been designed to make the transfer of fuel foolproof. It is impossible to inadvertently overfill one tank by incorrectly switching a fuel return valve.
Access to the engine room is via two hatches in the saloon sole and from the lazarette through a uniquely shaped oval door designed for easy access. Engine room intake air enters from the lazarette to ensure it is free of salt before reaching the engines and generators.
For safety and convenience each Cummins 500 hp engine has start and stop buttons on the engine, and a power take-off is standard on each transmission for efficient installation of optional stabilizers.
Inside the large lazarette are four polyethylene water tanks totaling 300 gallons. Four air conditioning compressors provide heating and cooling for the entire yacht. Against the transom is the steering system with its connection point for the autopilot. The tops for the rudder stocks terminate above the waterline. Also in this location are the secondary mufflers for the main engines. Despite all this equipment there remains 95 cu. ft. of storage for fenders and other cruising gear. Access to the engine room is through the oval-shaped door.
In many modern designs it has become fashionable to eliminate the inside steering station, but the Fleming 55 features a pilothouse which closely resembles the bridge of a much larger vessel. We created a dedicated place from which the boat is piloted and controlled without any distractions from other on-board activities but which is still only three steps from the saloon and galley. Four interior steps safely lead to the upper flying bridge station.
Specially designed removable consoles provide ample room for a full range of modern electronic equipment without intruding on the full range of engine instrumentation. Overhead consoles provide additional space. There is also a proper chart area with drawers and a chart light. Electrical panels swing out to provide easy access to wiring connections and the inside of the flying bridge console is accessed through a swing-out bookcase. The watch-keeper has their own helm seat and an adjacent, raised L-shaped settee and table provide a comfortable social area with excellent visibility through the side and forward windows.
This is truly the nerve center of the boat where all the systems and crew come together in complete harmony.