PaperOtto, the Italian folding drift (3m) that the Germans like


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PaperOtto - 4
PaperOtto (3.05 x 1.41 m) is the folding drift designed by Marco Oliveto

There is a boat that the Germans really like. It is sold in Germany. But she is Italian. It is called PaperOtto and is a 3.05-meter long and 1.41-meter wide “ready-to-wear” folding drift capable of accommodating 4 people on board and, most importantly, perfect for taking with you on vacation, perhaps on your roof rack. You arm it in no time and can use it in different configurations depending on whether you choose to mount the buoyancy reserves inside or outside the hull!

Left, the boat with the buoyancy reserves on the outside

The PaperOtto beloved in Germany

German Robert Heine, an avid camper, was looking for a small sailboat to take on a family vacation and came across, on the Internet, the PaperOtto, designed by Italian Marco Oliveto. “It was love at first sight,” Robert reveals.

Aboard the PaperOtto, on the right Robert Heine and on the left Marco Oliveto

“After translating PaperOtto’s Italian site with the help of google-translate, I immediately contacted Marco. Unfortunately, he could not deliver the boat to Germany-I was desperate. Such a great boat and I can’t buy it, I told myself. I kept in touch with the manufacturer and the idea of bringing PaperOtto to Germany matured in me. After a short trip to Italy and three wonderful days with the Oliveto family, my decision was made. I will market PaperOtto in Germany!”

Secrets of PaperOtto

How PaperOtto works, in detail, Oliveto reveals to us. “With RINA’s certification of up to 400 kg capacity and 41 kg footprint, easily manageable thanks to its unique folding system, the PaperOtto is the perfect vacation boat: you can carry the boat comfortably on your car’s roof rack folded up in its carry bag and, thanks to its aerodynamic shape, travel at normal highway speeds without friction or turbulence, without highway or ferry toll payments.

Its low weight, flat planing hull and rigid structure enable it to move nimbly under sail, oar, motor.”

Oliveto continues, “It is a boat with amazing marine qualities, developed through the experience of more than 50 prototypes tested even in very severe weather conditions, in collaboration with a joblab composed of competent sailors.”

And after use, how is it handled? “Zero storage and maintenance costs. Stored in a corner of the house it will always remain ready for use.”

Oliveto also tells about the “references” of the PaperOtto project: “Our project, based on the re-engineering in folding key of the Dinghy Mirror (a boat always considered the best by the Anglo-Saxon Sailing Schools), is the only folding boat in the world born for sailing and designed to sail safely even in the open sea.

Built using only RINA- and FSC-certified fine wood of different species, she makes use of Portuguese rigging (a solution that reduces the height of the mast to the same length as the boat) supplemented by a triradial furling gennaker on bowsprit. For efficient propulsion even when rowing, the boat is equipped with technical oars.

The components we selected, starting with the tanbark fabric with which the brick-colored sails are sewn, blend with the slatted design of the wooden benches. And in the interplay of the gradations of the different woods, treated by a first-rate paint cycle that enhances the naturalness of the grain and preserves it intact over time, this boat manages to excite its crew during every sailing experience.”


The tubulars: you can put them inside or outside!

Continued Oliveto: “The versatility of the boat is fully expressed through the possibility of using the provided high-pressure inflatable tubular reserves in two different ways.

PaperOtto under sail

1. Inner reserves, in order to keep its water lines intact and enjoy good response to rudder and wind effects;


2. External reserves in order to increase form stability. This configuration sterilizes the risk of scuffing and offers advantages in different usage scenarios.” Let’s list them, these scenarios:

  1. offer the use of a dinghy to those who are driven to take initiation sailing courses on keelboats, enabling them to improve the outcome of their learning; this advantage also translates into a drastic reduction in training costs, considering that a single instructor will be able to simultaneously follow 5 boats and thus a large number of students;
  2. enable management advantages when organizing large events, such as school courses, summer camps, vacation centers, rentals, trade show events, etc…
  3. enable people with disabilities to sail without the need for boat access from the dock using complex port facilities (cranes and other equipment), taking advantage of convenient direct access from the beach;
  4. ensure great stability during work sessions where loading/unloading of heavy equipment takes place, such as when using the boat for diving or other professional purposes;
  5. Equip the boat with effective side buffers, avoiding rigid contact with other boats, an ideal solution in use as a tender;
  6. Ensure convenient re-boarding during trips to make the
  7. Add hydrosupport during motor boating;
  8. Protect the outboard motor from the risk of the capsize in the
    sailing with auxiliary engine.

PaperOtto – Data Sheet

Overall length 3.05 m
Maximum beam 1.41 m
Measurements of the disassembled boat: 3.19 x 0.55 x 0.18 m
Empty hull weight 41 kg
Basic hull fitted weight: 48 kg
Weight equipped hull under sail 58 kg
RINA CE Certification
Class D
Capacity 400 kg
People 4
Base price: 7,900 euros
Assembly and disassembly time
Hull assembly 2 min.
Armo sailboat 8 min.
Bowsprit and gennaker rigging 3 min.
Tubular inflation 3 min.
Internal/external tubular displacement 4 min.
Boat decommissioning 8 min.

For info in Italian:

Video – How to assemble (and navigate) PaperOtto



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