Rockhopper of Lune


Bruce Roberts 434 Centre Cockpit Bluewater Steel Ketch






Centre Cockpit Sailing Ketch


Bruce Roberts


Topper Hermansen, Florida, USA

Year of Build:


Last Renovated:

Internally 2003-4 and Hull re-sprayed in 2011


Steel Hull & Decks with Marine Aluminium Cockpit & Coachroof




£69,500        (UK pounds)  OR NEAR OFFER



The yacht is VAT paid in the UK


The sale will be made within the EU to maintain the VAT paid status


Location for Viewing:

The yacht is in commission cruising Mediterranean Spain and will winter in Almerimar Marina.   Please email for viewing appointments.




1080p  HD    86Mb   3.03m




   with pictures Jul17.pdf











Hull Type:


Keel Type:

Long Fin with Full Depth Skeg-Hung Rudder & cutaway deadwood


14.4 tons dry weight.   20 tons fully loaded for cruising


UK Part 1



Official Number:

GBR 710292

Hull Colour:

Awlgrip Aristo Blue             (professionally re-sprayed 2011)



# of Engines:


Engine Type:

Perkins 4.154

Engine HP:



Borg Warner Velvet Drive 1.88:1   via 3 blade Equipoise Propeller



Fuel Capacity:

580 Litres in Port & Starboard Bunkers 250L each and 80L Day Tank

Range under Engine:

Approx. 230 hours at 5 knots giving 1100 nM in flat water    (max)

Engine Hours:

4800 approx


Edson Pedestal with S/S wheel and enclosed cable control wires to quadrant.

Autohelm Heavy Duty Linear RAM on quadrant.




Raymarine  SG3 Autopilot Course Computer

Raymarine  ST6002+ Auto Pilot Control Head at helm

Raymarine  Smart Pilot  Handheld Remote

Raymarine  Remote Smart Pilot Base Station

Autohelm   Heavy Duty Linear Ram on quadrant




Raymarine  ChartPlotter Radar RL80C Plus at Nav Station

Raymarine  Radar RL70C Plus   repeater at Helm

Raymarine  4kwatt 48nM Radar Antenna  on Mizzen

Firdell Blipper on Mizzen


Charting & Position Fix

Sony Vaio Computer running OpenCPN

NASA A.I.S. Radar Engine feeding OpenCPN

Yeoman “Active Chart Table” Plotter

Garmin GPS 128 with external antenna on rear arch

Garmin GPS 152  self-contained backup unit

Miniplex 42 NMEA Hub Buffer & Distribution    all instruments interconnected

NASA A.I.S. Radar




ICOM VHF DSC Remote Commander Mike at Helm


Twin Horn Tannoy Loud Speakers on Mizzen



Raymarine  ST60+ Log Speed, Depth, Wind


Furuno NX-300 Navtex

NASA Radio Telex Weatherman



McMurdo Smart Find EPIRB 406MHz

Raymarine  Life Tag Radio Base with 2 Life Tag units





Bad Boy Long Range WiFi Booster Antenna on Mizzen

Bad Boy Unleashed 8 channel WiFi Hotspot at Nav Station



Kenwood Car Stereo with 4 internal and 4 external speakers

Samsung 23” TV in Lounge



Water Capacity:

1000 Litres in 3 tanks independently valved, filled & pumped  (2 separate pumps)

Water Maker:

ARMA 220vAC makes 60 Litres per hr via UV disinfectant lamp - requires genset.

Hot Water:

35Litre Twin Coil HotPot Calorifier - with programmable 1200watt immersion heater (reqs. genset or shore power).     Coil 1: Main engine    Coil 2: Eberspacher



Sleeps 8 in 3 cabins

4’6” Island Bed in Aft Master

4’4” Double & 2 singles in Fwd Cabin

4’6” Double in Saloon U-seat conversion



Fwd & Aft Lavac WCs with Showers & Wash Basins

Holding Tanks:

Fwd Tank:  90 Litres,     Aft Tank:  160 Litres

Y-valves allow  (WC->Tank) or (WC->Overboard) or (Tank->Overboard)

Henderson MkV pumps

Deck Extraction points for both tanks



Full width Cockpit Bimini (new 2015)

Zip on mesh side Sun Screens

Zip-in full-enclosure Cockpit Tent

Aft Deck full-enclosure winter tent



Power Generation:

BetaMarine 5.25 kva water-cooled Diesel Generator

                                                 (23Amps @ 220vAc)    Gen Hours: 1850

Victron Phoenix 12v/3000w/120a   Invertor-Charger                

                                                 (powered from shore power, genset or batteries)

Quicksilver Galvanic Isolator on Shore Power

270 Watts Solar Panels            giving 10 Amps plus    @ 12v

                                                 (managed by 2 independent regulators)

Rutland 914i Wind Generator  giving 20 Amps plus    @ 12v

90 Amp & 55 Amp 12v Alternators on Main Engine

13Amp UK style ring main throughout the yacht



12v x 450 Ah   Domestic Suite  -  comprising 4 x 6v 225Ah Trojan Deep Cycle

12v x 105 Ah   Engine & Genset Start Battery

12v x 200 Ah   Bow Batteries for Windlass & Bow-thruster


Bow Thruster:

Vetus 80 kgf   controlled from Helm


Lofrans Leopard 1200w Vertical Windlass with Rope drum

                                                   (dual control Helm & Bow)



Bower:       SPADE                            37Kg Self Launch  on 125m of 10mm chain

Bower:       FISHERMAN                  37Kg - on 15m of 10mm Chain and 55m of

                                                                                                                8 plait warp

Storm:        DANFORTH                   40Kg

Stern:         BUGLE                            27Kg Self Launch on 10m of 8mm chain &

                                                                                                    55m of 8 plait warp

Kedge:       DANFORTH                   10Kg



Eberspacher 5kw programmable wet central heating with 3 fan assisted radiators in Fwd, Main & Aft cabins.    Also feeds hot water calorifier on coil 2

Dickensen Newport Oil Drip Cabin Heater

Electric Convector Heaters in Main & Aft Cabins  - requires genset or shorepower.


Air Conditioning:

AirMarine Mermaid 16500BTU 220vAC Air Conditioning Unit serving the Main Salon, Galley and Aft Cabin - will drop the ambient cabin temperature by up to 10 degrees    - requires genset or shorepower.





Large aft Swim Platform with deep folding Swim Ladder

Swim Shower on Platform

70m Floating Line on Reel for anchor & tie back

Aluminium ladder Passarelle for stern-to berthing.

Forward pulpit ladder for bow-to berthing

Zodiac Zoom 3.10m RIB with 8 HP Yamaha outboard carried on aft davits

Heavy Duty Yacht Legs allow the yacht to dry out on flat stable shoreline

16 fenders – various sizes

Multiple warps













Rockhopper is a safe and capable “go anywhere, do anything, stay as long as you like” vessel.


Professionally built by the Topper Hermansen Boatyard in Florida, USA in 1987 she is a fine example of this spacious Bruce Roberts design.


Fully renovated and updated in 2003-4 by the current owner with a teak & maple finish, all new wiring, electronics and plumbing throughout.  The hull was professionally re-sprayed in Awlgrip Aristo Blue in 2011.



The 434 is a very comfortable long distance sea boat, able to accept whatever weather is thrown at her.   Performance under sail is approx. 140nM per 24hrs run.  As with all heavy displacement ketches she is happiest off the wind with a minimum 12Knts + at 60 degrees wind angle and will easily achieve over 8 knts depending upon sea state. 



The central cockpit is a safe and dry environment and there is little reason to leave it on passage as all controls run back there.  The main sail can be easily reefed using the single line slab reefing system.   Underway, Rockhopper has an easy, relatively tender, motion up to about 15 degrees of heel where she stiffens up considerably and rarely exceeds this.  Gusts simply cause acceleration rather than more heel.



Rockhopper is equally comfortable as a “home afloat” whether lazing on the large aft sun deck or sitting under the bimini when it’s too just hot or wet.    Zip-in cockpit and aft deck tents increase the usable space on wet or winter days.   Equipped with 3 forms of cabin heating and air conditioning she offers good accommodation in all conditions.       



Sleeps up to 8 in 3 cabins.  The bunks are all of good size and comfortable to sleep in.  The accommodation is dry and free from condensation as it benefits from a minimum of 50mm of polyethylene foam insulation under the teak and maple finish.


She is in excellent condition and fitted out with just about everything you need for full independence afloat, anywhere in the world.  The on-board Genset, Invertor/Charger, Water Maker, Air Con and Heating allows for 365 days at anchor or on passage with only occasional forays ashore for supplies, fuel & sight-seeing.



My wife and I have owned Rockhopper for 17 years and lived on board full time for the last 10 years therefore all services are in full commission and each item of equipment is well maintained and can be demonstrated in working order.   Sadly my wife has decided to return ashore so it’s time to sell Rockhopper and let new owners enjoy the wonders of safe, comfortable and independent cruising.



See my blog at







The Perkins engine is smooth, quiet and very reliable.  All round maintenance access from the Galley, Aft Heads and Main Saloon.  Burning approx. 2.5 litres an hour at 1400 RPM we can run happily at 5.5knts.   Twin alternators provide separate charging for the Domestic suite (90Ah alternator) and Engine/Bow Batteries (55Ah alternator).  Cross-over switching allows either or both to carry the load in an emergency.   Fuel is lifted from either Hull Bunker (250L each) into the 80L Day Tank via a 2 micron Racor filter where fuel quality and water contamination can be monitored.  Once in the Day Tank the fuel is gravity fed to the engine via a second 2 micron Racor filter.   As the engine runs, fuel is constantly cycled thru the Day Tank ensuring it is well filtered.   A sight gauge on the Day Tank allows easy monitoring of usage.  


The 580 litre fuel capacity allows approx. 230 hours running at 5 knots giving a range of about 1100 nautical miles.  In practice, however, most of our fuel is used on power generation with possibly only 35% used on propulsion.   Just one litre of diesel will charge the batteries, cool the fridge/freezer, make 60 litres of delicious fresh water, heat 35 litres of hot water and boil innumerable kettles for tea.


Propulsion is via a Borg Warner Velvet Drive Hydraulic gearbox, 1.25” shaft thru a PSS shaft seal, to a fixed 3 blade Equipoise bronze propeller.   The 18RH14, propeller pitch is “over propped” which gives a smoother ride at the slight expense of top speed. 


Under Engine: 

           Economical Cruising Speed is                  5.5knts.     (2.5 litres per hour)

           Max sustainable speed is                          6.5knts       (4.5 litres per hour)

           Flank Speed  (occasional short runs)        7 knts.                







Steel Hull & Decks with Marine Aluminium Coach Roof & Cockpit. 


Professionally built by Topper Hermanson of Florida, the hull has a well-rounded profile with no hard chines.  All covered in 2 part epoxy paint.  The hull is finished in Awlgrip Aristo Blue, re-sprayed in 2011, and retains a high shine with little polishing advised.


The centre cockpit is finished in solid teak while the wide side decks and a large aft sun deck benefit from a non-slip epoxy paint finish.


Low coach roof with large saloon windows gives a light airy feel below.  Not quite a “deck saloon” but very close to it.


The underwater profile has a long shallow, well raked fin keel and a full depth skeg-hung rudder giving good directional stability through the water making the helm light and responsive. With the deadwood cut away she is nimble when manoeuvring in tight marinas and fairly well behaved in reverse with very little prop walk.  With experience, I prefer to keep the helm amidships and use the bow-thruster to steer backwards as this produces more effective control.


During the re-fit in 2003-4 I stripped out the entire inner hull, stem-to-stern, cleaned back to bright steel with a needle scaler and chemically cleaned the steel before applying 6 coats of Jotun Mastic87 epoxy and 2 coats of Jotun polyurethane top coat.  Many of the floors were converted to be easily removable and the new teak & holly cabin sole fitted in lift-able sections so make hull access simple. Where future hull access would be difficult, such as under the water tanks, the paintwork was liberally sprayed with WaxOyl to form a waterproof seal.





Navigation & Comms


Rockhopper has a half-Admiralty Chart sized chart table with 4 large drawers and cupboards under and behind.  Navigation is mainly done using electronic charting on the PC with a helm repeater screen & mouse, supported by Garmin GPS and ship-wide NMEA data transfer via a buffer hub.  A Yeoman ActiveCchart desk is fitted under the desk top for use with paper charts


Radar and Autopilot controls are also repeated at the Helm.


ICOM DSC VHF with Remote Commander at the helm and ICOM DSC SSB are both situated at the Nav desk.







The main saloon is fitted out in Teak & Maple to give a light airy feel.  U seating for 6 people is to port while the Nav station and Dickensen Oil Heater is to starboard.  Further heating is supplied by an Eberspacher 5kw hydronic heater unit, in the lazarette, with fan radiators in the forward cabin, central saloon and aft cabin.   Air conditioning outlets in the Saloon, Galley & Aft Cabin.


A removable solid maple folding table sits within the U seating.  This can be swapped out for a smaller coffee table when required.  The U seat will make up into a large double bed.




Sleeps 8 in 3 cabins but is currently set up for a permanent live-aboard couple with occasional guests.


                     Aft Master Cabin with island 4’6” pocket sprung double bed and plenty of wardrobe storage

                     En-suite Aft Heads with Lavac Sea Toilet, 35 gallon holding tank, shower and washbasin.

                     Forward crew cabin with 4’4” double bed, single full length bunk and shorter child’s bunk, extensive cupboard & drawer space under.

                     En-Suite Fwd Heads with Lavac Sea Toilet, 20 gallon holding tank, shower and washbasin

                     Main Saloon, U seat makes up to a large double bed for occasional use.


The accommodation is dry and free from condensation as it benefits from a minimum of 50mm of polyethylene foam insulation under the teak and maple finish.




Domestic Equipment



Force 10 gimballed 3 burner cooker with oven

Double corner sink with removable brushed steel drainer over one sink

Grunnert Fridge and Freezer,   120L/90L


Candy 3kg automatic Washing Machine

HotPoint 3 kg Tumble Drier

Samsung TV in main Salon,

Large Circulation Fan in Main Saloon

Small, ultra quiet, 12v fans over each bunk

Full complement of Cutlery, Crockery and Pans etc.




Sails & Spars



Isomat Masts and Spars

Single-line Slab Reefing (2 points) on Main Sail, controlled from the cockpit

Slab Reefing (2 points) on Mizzen controlled from Aft Deck

Hood Sea Furl Single-line Roller Reefing on 140% Foresail controlled from the cockpit

Lazy Jacks and Integrated Main Boom Cover make stowing easy

Detachable Free Flying 150% Lightweight Genneker  on ProFurl Roller flies forward of the Foresail

Detachable (to 2 positions) inner forestay for flying No 2 Jib and Storm Jib

Extending Spinnaker Pole and Guys for Symmetric Spinnaker

Both the Main & Mizzen masts have climbing steps making maintenance aloft both easy and safe.


Sail Wardrobe

                     Furling Genoa                               140%               44.5sqm

                     Furling Free Flying Genneker        150%              51.9sqm

                     No2 Yankee                                                          19.6sqm

                     Spinnaker                                                              54sqm

                     Storm Jib                                                               10.5sqm

                     Main Sail                                                               31.36sqm

                     Mizzen Sail                                                           13.0sqm

                     Try Sail                                                                  9.2sqm



 All sails are in good condition and set well in use.  The Furling Genoa will require a new sacrificial strip after 1 or 2 more seasons.




Safety Equipment



Plastimo Cruiser 6 man Life Raft

7 Crewsaver Life Jackets

2 Horseshoe Rings with light

McMurdo Smart Find EPIRB 406MHz

Raymarine Life Tag system