Champlain Sailor

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Everything posted by Champlain Sailor

  1. Champlain Sailor

    Australian Laser speed rivalry

    I had that poster hanging in my bedroom growing up. Nothing like a 'firehose reach.'
  2. Champlain Sailor

    Australian Laser speed rivalry

    20+ knots in a Laser is crazy fast. I don't doubt that these are real numbers. Yes, they are instantaneous peaks, not over 500 meters, etc. but they are still fast as hell.
  3. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Dave, I'm confident that you will see some shape in the steam on the shower door, notice a leaf falling in a certain way, or bump your head on the tailgate of your car one day and the some awesome modification to the foil will suddenly be clear to you!
  4. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    The Waszp class introduced a larger main foil in late 2018 for this exact reason. Their sailors felt that the Waszp performed well in 12-20 knots of wind, but in less than 10 knots, foiling was marginal and maneuvers very difficult. I have not had the pleasure of sailing a Waszp, but I raced my UFO at the Wickford Regatta in June of 2019 and observed that the Waszps that had converted to the longer foil were able to get up on the foils steadily in 6-8 knots of wind. The sailors raved about how much better the boat handled in winds below 10 knots with the new foil. They were able to foil in winds that just about all the UFOs were low riding (Dave being the exception... he could pump like mad and get up on the foils in the puffs for a couple hundred yards). The Waszp foils are straight aluminum extrusions. Compared to the UFO and Moth foils, they look very crude. However, they appear to work and making a bigger one simply means cutting the extrusion to a longer length, so no tooling was involved. What is interesting is that the class determined that the impact to top speed was insignificant, and they decided that the new longer foil is the only class legal foil (there was a transition period). So they decided not to offer two foils, but to standardize on the new, larger foil. Obviously , creating a larger UFO foil is a significantly more challenging endeavor, and as others have pointed out, if you extend the width you eliminate the very nice feature of having the foil tucked safely between the hulls. Foil design is a very challenging set of trade offs, I don't pretend to understand them all. I would welcome a larger foil that allowed for take offs in 6-8 knots of wind (2 knots less that I foil in now) as we have those conditions a lot. Maybe a clever UFO sailor will come up with a design that works well and share it with us on SA!
  5. Champlain Sailor

    Motors on Sailing Dinghies: discuss

    W: Not taken as a criticism at all. Sadly, this is not just restricted to electric propulsion. Most consumers in the US are fairly ignorant of any mechanical or electrical principles that make their products work. That's why cars now just tell you 'maintenance required' and don't have guages. People can not be trusted to pull over when the oil pressure gage drops into the red zone or an idiot light comes on (and why are they called idiot lights)? Companies can create great instructions and print them in manuals, but most consumers look for the power switch and just turn it on. When the device fails, they return the product. The good news is that it forces companies to simply make better products. Modern automobiles are phenomenally amazing, and require just about no maintenance or attention these days. Gas engines suffer too, particularly in our current era of ethanol mix gasoline. Leave gas in your outboard over the winter and good luck getting it started. But electric propulsion seems so simple, even thoughtful people can be fooled into thinking an electric consumer product is 'easy.' I worked on electric riding mowers for a few years. The existing players (Ariens, Toro, etc.) would simply remove the gas engine, put an electric motor and some car batteries inside, and release the product. The transmissions were inefficient, the chargers were an afterthought, and the batteries would typically be overcharged and fail within the warranty period. A few smaller outfits tried more sophisticated products (Hustler Zeon arguably the best), but the cost was so high they either went out of business within a few years or dropped the line. Only now are we starting to see mass market electric riders showing up that seem to have good performance and robust designs that will last several yearrs with a mechanically ignorant owner. Again, a hobbiest can add electric propusion to a sailboat (or bike or mower) quite easily. But if you want to sell a propulsion system and make enough money to stay in business year after year, you need to do your design, sourcing, and manufacturing homework thoroughly enough that you don't get buried in warranty calls. Its not impossible, its just harder than it looks. Been there, done that.
  6. Champlain Sailor

    Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

    The rowing looks great! Another fun used for the boat, and he raised centerboard well appears to make a relatively comfy seat. Was this done intentionally in the design, or was it a happy accident? Dave, I gotta disagree on the utility of rotomolded boats. For non-high performance craft, they are terrific. We live on a rocky beach, and we can use our kayaks and RS14, and Hobie Wave without worry. More importantly, we can let friends and kids use the boats and not fret over them bumping into a rock when launching or retrieving them. We can explore in the kayaks way up the local river, skidding over fallen logs and bumping off rocks without a care. Sure, they are heavier and less stiff than a fiberglass boat, but for a durable fun craft, they can be great. As you know, I like fiberglass and carbon boats too (OK, you can see the pattern, I like just about all boats). Different tools for different jobs.
  7. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Paul: Its been in the 30s here, both air and water temperature. Even with a dry suit, that's too cold for me! I'm envious of your SD climate at this time of year! Here's a little background on why I 'know' this about the wand. Dave Clark convinced me to come down to Rhode Island in the summer of 2019 to race in Bristol with a half a dozen other UFO's. "Come to Bristol" he said. "It will be fun" he said. Well, it was fun, eventually. Initially we had very little wind. We set up buoys and did practice races around them in 4-5 knots of wind. One trick I discovered is that if you raise the wand out of the water, the boat was noticeably faster, almost a knot faster. I think that some of this is due to the drag of the wand itself, but much of it is due to the drag of the foil trying to generate lift. With a velocitek, and several light air races to gather data, I felt very confident that if the wind was less than 6 knots, to raise the wand all the way up. ie, if you know you can't foil, don't let the boat waste energy trying. I'm quite certain that on my boat. the wand will pivot back in 5 knots of wind, with the boat making about 4 knot of boatspeed. I believe that is 'normal' functioning of the wand system.
  8. Champlain Sailor

    Motors on Sailing Dinghies: discuss

    I'd counter your position slightly in that you can successfully buy Chinese hardware (in fact, it is hard to find speed controllers made anywhere else) but you better know what you are looking for, and you need to either be at the factory that is making your product or have a knowledgeable rep that is there. There is some great hardware coming out of China, Taiwan, and other countries in the region, but there is a ton of junk too. If you don't know what you are buying and who you are buying from, you are almost certainly buying the junk.
  9. Champlain Sailor

    Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

    My point here is that the Adventure Island has not been a 'mass market' success, even when measured in sailboat terms. The Hobie 16 sold over 100,000 (we know this because it has an active one design racing class so the factory shares some production data with the class). I would guess that the Hobie Wave may have sold over 100K as well, they seem to be EVERYWHERE, but sales numbers are not released. Over 200K Lasers sold, over 300K Sunfish sold. Almost half a million sea snarks have been built (which tells you that price does matter!). Tens of thousands is successful for a sailboat, but not a 'mass market success.' You began this thread by proposing that a boat needed reefing and aux propulsion to be a mass market success, and used the AI as an example. I'm simply pointing out that the AI has not become a mass market product. Keep in mind that Ford sells over 800,000 F-150 pickups every year! That is a mass market success. So in generic product marketing terms, no sailboat has ever been a true mass market success. But the sea snark, sunfish, and laser are about as close as anyone has come, in my estimation.
  10. Champlain Sailor

    Motors on Sailing Dinghies: discuss

    I have some experience with electric propulsion and power, and am a big fan of it. On the surface, it seems like an easy no-brainer. Get a motor (cheap), a speed controller (cheap) and a battery, connect them and you are done. A few hours on ebay or amazon and how you have an Electric boat. If it has oars or a sail, you can call it a 'hybrid' and charge more And for the hobbyist, it really is that cheap and easy today. For several hundred dollars and a few hours of tinkering you too can be silently cruising the waterways. However, and this is a big however, there is an enormous variation in quality in what is available. There is so much cheap hardware available, sourced from the folks that are making e-scooters and e-bikes by the 100,000. Some of it is decent. Some of it is crap. Can you tell the difference? As purchased, almost none of it is rated for full immersion. i worked as an engineer with an electric outdoor power equipment firm for a few years, and I can tell you that even when the hardware is sound, if there is any maintenance or special operating procedures required by the user, you will have a market failure. Some battery types don't like to be run down below 50%. Others want to be kept on the charger all the time. Yet some should only rarely be charged to 100%. Unless the battery charger automatically charges properly and the motor controller only lets you use the product safely. When the unit does not perform, the first call is to the dealer, next is to the manufacturer. Customers are not interested in learning about batteries, customers want to push a button and have the boat go. The system must protect itself from the user, which is easier said than done. So, to make an electric propulsion system that a boat manufacturer can stand by, they must ensure that the components are user-proof and work well as a system. They then have to address the non-insignificant problem of making them water resistant (and if you want this on a small dinghy, fully submersible). This is not impossible, but it is not easy or cheap to do it right. Torqueedo has done a commendable job in this area with outboard motors. But they have had challenges too. Lift foiling surfboards sells foil board as well as battery powered 'efoil' boards. A foil board (not powered) is about $2800. An efoil costs $12,000. So the battery, controller, and motor add about $9K to the price. I've had the pleasure of using one of the Lift efoils and can attest that it is incredibly well engineering and built. All of the components are robust and well thought out, and the motors performance is astounding. Cheaper efoil packages are available, as are multiple videos on line of customers receiving them and showing them short out, fail to start, etc. I'm confident that electric marine propulsion will continue to get cheaper, more reliable, and more powerful in the near future. But we don't live in a world where $500 is going to buy you a reliable electric system that will run day in and day out for 60 minutes on a single charge. Stay tuned, though, it may not be far off. Likely years away, but not decades.
  11. Champlain Sailor

    Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

    Bluelaser2: I believe I see the flaw in your data. Your premise is that since the Hobie Adventure Island is sold out, that it is what everyone shopping for a new fun boat is looking for. The additional data that you need to include is that in 2020 just about ALL small boats were sold out (and bicycles, back country ski gear, fire pits, etc.) I can state from personal experience that by June of 2020, many RS Sailboats were sold well before they arrived in the US. We bought an RS Cat sight unseen and had to wait several weeks until it arrived in the US to pick it up at Zim Sailing in Rhode Island. Our neighbors bought an RS Zest and an Aqua Finn this summer and both paid MSRP for the only boat they could find in the region. The RS Aero continues to be in very short supply. Dave Clark has let potential UFO customers know that his factory is booked out until late spring, so if you want a UFO for next summer, get your order in now! So, despite the fact that sailing is 'dying', 2020 was a banner year for boat builders. And not just for small boats, US Sailing reports a record number of lessons, particularly for adults and families looking to be able to cruise. Hopefully the pandemic will have a silver lining in the form of more interest in sailing and other outdoor sports, and less screen time. The Hobie Adventure Island is a cool boat, but its a 'jack of all trades' craft in an odd configuration. I have a few friends that have owned them, and all have sold them after a few seasons. They sail OK, motor OK (if you have a motor) don't paddle well, but do pedal very well. You are pretty much stuck sitting in one position, so long outings involve getting pretty stiff. Our local dealer appeared to be out of Adventure Islands this year, however in previous years he always had a couple on the lot. They sold much more slowly than the regular kayaks did. I'd guess Hobie has sold a reasonable number, in the many 10's of thousands over the years. So its likely a profitable boat for Hobie, but I would not call it a mass market success. Your expedition looks like a nice boat. I'm certain that it is easy to sail and a good performer. But as Steve Clark pointed out, the Hoyt rig has not proven to be a sales accelerator, despite its advantages. If it works for you, particularly with the trolling motor, that is great. The history of the Escape Sailboat company makes for interesting reading, and I applaud their effort to expand the market for small sailboats. Their boats were innovative and well thought-out. https://www.cheyneyrock.co.uk/sailing/escape-sailboats/escape-sailboats-history.php But in the end, I'm not aware that they sold a significant amount of boats nor did they dramatically open up sailing to new markets. That's a tall order to fill, and many of us (you included) are interested finding ways to grow the sport.
  12. Champlain Sailor

    Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

    As a long time Laser sailor, I have to admit I used to look "down" a little at the Sunfish....until I find myself taking one for a sail from time to time, and I'm always amazed at how well they sail and how little effort they take to rig up and get going. Its no wonder that the design is still popular after all these years. We have a member in our club that keeps an old Sunfish around and seems to only take it out when its blowing over 20. The first time I saw him, I though he got caught out unaware and was worried he was in trouble. But he tacked and gybed several times and seemed to have no inclination to return. He came in later, drenched, exhausted, and elated. On later occasions, I'd be out on my Laser in a big blow and we'd cross tacks. His smile was just as big as mine. So the Sunfish and Rocket may not be as high tech as the Laser (which now is not as high tech as the Aero), but they still deliver plenty of fun on the water, without asking for much in return. For those who are fans of the class, I stumbled onto Sunfish serial # 001 at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in Vergennes, Vermont last year. If you are in the area, its worth a look (lots of other great boats and displays too)! Pardon my shameless plug for a great local institution.
  13. Champlain Sailor

    Going downwind slowly in a Laser

    My final point on this...there is nothing 'wrong' with the boat or with what you are doing. Quite the opposite. You are pushing your limits and if you continue to do so, particularly if you reflect on what is going on and ask others for advice, your envelope will expand and you'll find yourself smiling when before you were just surviving. There is no 'single thing' you can do to make going downwind in a big breeze easy. its hard! But that's what makes it so rewarding! Its amazing how much wind this 50 year old design can handle, and how much fun it can deliver. But it does take a lot of practice to figure it out. Make sure you don't get hit by the boom on a gybe, and that your dressed to swim, and enjoy the ride. When you get tired, and you WILL get tired, head in for the day. Every outing you'll get better, sometimes a little, sometimes a lot.
  14. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Paul: Perhaps I'm mis-understanding your post. It sounds like you have made your wand paddle bigger in an attempt to foil in lighter winds. When the wand is push aft by forward boatspeed, it pushes down on the main foil flap, thus configuring the foil to generate max lift. In my experience, the wand will be pushed aft when the boat is moving forward at a speed of about 4 knots. My gantry is set up with one length of bungee tied in a loop, so I have 2X bungee force on the wand, but not a tremendous amount. The UFO will not take off until it is moving through the water at 7 knots, maybe a little less if you are light (<150 pounds). For me, at 180 pounds, I need to see a steady 7.7 knots before I can lift off with normal conditions, without exerting a ton of energy pumping myself up onto the foils. I have a velocitek mounted to the gantry, so I have a good idea of the speeds I am seeing on the water. Your wand, if rigged properly, should pivot fully aft once you exceed 4 knots with the standard end paddle. Making it pivot aft earlier won't make you fool sooner, as you won't have enough water velocity over the foil to generate enough lift. If your wand is not pivoting aft and you are at foiling speeds, I would recommend you put less tension in your bungee, or check your wand pivots to ensure they are not too stiff. Doug
  15. Champlain Sailor

    Going downwind slowly in a Laser

    Wess, you have a good point, easing the main is indeed your first line of defense when overpowered going up wind. My primary point is that the Laser (and likely most any board boat) is more foregiving going upwind. There are numerous ways to feel 'in control' and you can sheet in, hike harder, or bear away just a bit to power up when you feel you can handle more power. Things happen more gradually and the boat isn't moving as fast. I still find that pinching slightly is a valid strategy in the Laser going upwind, particularly if I have a long beat in front of me. If I could hike longer and harder, and had the stamina to really play the main hard, you are correct, it would likely be faster to never pinch. Once you bear away, you are going fast, and there isn't the natural body weigh versus the sail balance to keep everything stable. This is a skill that is acquired over time, with practice. Ideally, in the company of others that can offer feedback and support. And it is a fun and rewarding envelope to push.
  16. Champlain Sailor

    Going downwind slowly in a Laser

    You have gotten some good advice here and while your question may seem funny, I can relate to why you want to know this. Going upwind in a Laser in heavy air is quite physical, but it is easy to get the hang of. Hike the boat as flat as you can, pinch if you are overpowered, and you can go upwind in 20-30 knots and feel like a hero. UNTIL you decide to bear away and head for home. At this point you learn there is no easy way to depower the boat and keep it stable. In an emergency, if you are tired or cold and it is blowing like stink, simply let the mainsheet run out of the boom (make sure its tied on at ONE end) and the boom will rotate over the bow of the boat and you can simply drift/sail downwind. Be sure not to let the boom rotate much more than 180 degrees or your outhaul or cunningham system will fail. This will get you downwind slowly but safely. Recovering the mainsheet on the water is difficult in a breeze, so don't do this unless you have a safe destination dead downwind. if you do need to re-rig the mainsheet it is often easiest to simply capsize the boat and re-rig the sheet with the boat on its side. To actually sail downwind, PRACTICE! Go out in 10 knots of wind and get fully comfortable bearing away, sailing on a broad reach and buy the lee, gybing back and forth, etc. When that is easy, do it in 15 knots. Repeat this. For me, I'm 'comfortable' in up to 20 knots (meaning that I am not likely to capsize much) and capable in 25 knots (capable meaning I can do it safely, but I'll likely do a fair amount swimming along the way). Sailing downwind with a full rig in 25 knots is exhausting for me, and if the wind will be over 20 knots and I want to be out for more than an hour, I'll use a radial rig, which makes the boat far more manageable downwind. If the windspeed is making you uncomfortable downwind, keep your cunningham and outhaul tight. The vang has a huge impact on stability going downwind. Too tight and the boom will hit the water and trip you. Too loose and the main will get too full and difficult to control. So play with it and learn. It is challenging, but when you 'get it' there are few rides more fun that surfing downwind in a big breeze on a little boat.
  17. Champlain Sailor

    Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

    Bluelaser2, you must be a very happy guy, because I believe you are indeed quite wrong. None of the "fun" sailboats that have enjoyed 'mass sales' that I know of have had auxiliary propulsion. The Laser, Sunfish, Hobie 16 and the Sea Snark are the only boats I'm aware of that have sold more than 100,000 hulls. None is designed to change their sail area while on the water, with the exception of the Hobie which can be reefed, although tying in a reef while floating in conditions that require a reef is challenging, to say the least. I'm speaking of the past...would these be desirable features in a future design? Sure! Would it allow that design to achieve 'mass sales' success? Maybe; it would depend on the added cost and the design compromises that had to be made to incorporate them. So far, adding alternate propulsion and easily adjustable sail area hasn't resulted in a big sales bump for any boat that I am aware of. If you can design and build a fun little sailboat that has auxiliary propulsion and an adjustable area sail at a competitive price, I'd recommend you do it. When someone can offer a Laser/Sunfish/Rocket competitor that sails as well and offers reliable aux propulsion for $500 more, I bet they will have a winner. But its harder than it seems, an no one has done it yet. Pull it off and it will be my turn to be happy that I'm wrong! The Hobie Adventure Island is a great boat, I really like them. While it sails, it is not a competitor for a Rocket, Laser, or any other dedicated small sailboat. Its a kayak with sailing capability. The pedal drive is amazing, I've tried it and I love it! But I don't want it on my Laser or my UFO, and if I wanted a Rocket, I wouldn't want it on that either. The cost, weight, added drag, and clutter in the cockpit make it undesirable to me in a small board type boat. The Sunfish and its imitators are great boats. Simple design, low cost, lots of fun. People still want that. Technology has improved over the past 40 years, and Fulcrum is simply taking advantage of producing a boat that takes all of the aspects that make a Sunfish great, and adding to it the advantages that 40 years of design and composites manufacturing advances have provided. Seems like a pretty sound marketing strategy to me.
  18. Champlain Sailor

    Motors on Sailing Dinghies: discuss

    I'm surprised that no one has mentioned what seems to be the most obvious reason to me.... dinghies, particularly board boats, are designed to capsize! Outboard motors don't like being submerged or inverted. For me, that rules out a gas outboard (or any device that can not be submerged) on a board boat. It's tempting to dismiss this as a 'stupid' question, but it is not, the OP is bringing up a good point. It has been on people's mind for decades. I grew up in Annapolis in the '80s and worked at Backyard Boats in Eastport while in high school. We sold Lasers, Sunfish, Hobies, etc. Customers often requested motors for their Hobie Cats and dinghys. We sold the little 'cruise and carry' outboards, which were really light, and if I recall correctly, pretty poorly made (we had many of them coming back for work). We did our best to discourage motor use on smaller boats. But some buyers insisted. We sold a Capri 14.2 with a cruise and carry motor on it, that is the smallest boat I can recall sending out the door with a motor. What will likely be game changing in this area are the developments we are seeing in ultra compact electrical propulsion systems now being developed for SUPs and foilboards. Batteries, electronics, and motors are all getting smaller, more powerful, and less expensive. A small foil/propeller assembly can easily be mounted to the bottom of a dinghy, and a battery pack strapped into the cockpit. There are quite a few DIY parts available now for folks that are curious and handy. Amazon sells an 'E-Fin' kit for $459 that has a skeg and propeller that can be epoxied to a hull, and a box with a speed controller. Not sure if it includes the battery or not. Its designed for an SUP, so it would e underpowered for a day sailor, but it would move it. Some company named Bixpy sells a 'power shroud' and battery pack for $1100, designed to power a sea kayak 6-12 miles at 5mph. So there are options out there now, and they are certain to keep improving over the next few years. But will people buy it? Sure, but I'm not sure how many. As added piece of mind for new sailors, I can see its marketing value. I worry that people will use it in conditions they shouldn't like heading out in 20 knots of wind and assuming you can motor home if the sailing is too much. That won't work, particularly if you can't take the sail down on the water. But I know of folks that would benefit greatly from a small dinghy auxiliary to get from a protected creek out to a good sailing venue. So I predict that we will see an electric dinghy auxiliary being produced in the next few years. Likely something you clamp/bolt/epoxy to your rudder/centerboard/hull with a small battery and control box that is strapped to the cockpit or hull and gives you 45-60 minutes of go for $1000-$2000. I predict boat builders will be slow to offer propulsion themselves for two reasons. First, batteries, controllers, and motors are not a technology that they understand or want to support. When batteries fail, they don't want to have to spend time troubleshooting them with the customer or be on the hook for warranty expenses. I believe we will need to have a few industry leaders, like Torqueedo, who demonstrate that the products and the parent company are both 'bulletproof' before a boat builder will be willing to incorporate it. Second, I don't think that they want the liability. Some customers will use the motor as another reason that they don't need lessons, and motor out beyond their range or ability, then complain that the range is too short or motor not powerful enough to get them home. But as the costs drop and the reliability of the product improves, I do believe that more an more smaller boats will have an electric propulsion option. It's not something I personally want for my boats, but I can see the market responding positively to a well built, $500 option that gives 30 minutes of hassle free motoring. It wont be long...
  19. Champlain Sailor

    Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

    Damn! I wish you had offered the Rocket this past spring. Our neighbors bought an Aqua Finn this last July. Another board boat with lateen rig and bigger cockpit than the Sunfish. The Rocket definately looks more slippery, and every bit as easy and fun to sail. Priced competitively, the Rocket would have been a natural fit for them, and could have kept my UFO company on the beach. These board boats may not be the most high tech boats on the water, but they are hard to beat for simplicity and fun. Great product Dave, I'll be sure to recommend them to people I know looking for something simple and fun.
  20. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Once you are up at height, is the bungee pulling the top of the wand back so the bottom flicks forward again? If not, then yes, you need more bungee tension. If the bungee is pulling the wand top back once it leaves the water, then the bungee is not your problem. You likely need more lift on the rudder, or need to sit further forward. I can't see how loosening wand bungee would help you lift off earlier. The UFO will not generate enough lift to get you out of the water until the boat is going about 7 knots. I find that the wand gets pulled back with a double length of bungee once the boat is going 3-4 knots. Instead, you can increase lift at all speeds by moving the top of the main foil back one hole, from the middle to one slot aft of middle. I've tried this and find that adding more lift for light wind doesn't help me. It simply creates more drag, and slows me down. If you are a light sailor, then this technique might work. I'm 180 pounds, and find that I have earliest liftoff in the middle foil slot, and it comes when the boat is exceeding 7 knots, in 9-10 knots of wind or so.
  21. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Another great video Kelly! I'm really impressed at its ability to 360 pan during edit. As for the crack, no, i have not seen any hairline cracks or heard of any in the bow area. That is a hard area to over stress (other than a collision). Take a photo of it and send it to Dave. The only hull weaknesses I'm aware of is that the deck under the seating pads can get spongy over time. I know some of the early boats (single digit hull numbers) had some pretty serious reinforcing work done on their decks after a season or two. I believe this was strengthened early in the build, but after 3 seasons mine is beginning to get a little springy as well. Other that that, my hull has been rock solid.
  22. Champlain Sailor

    craigslist , scam or not?

    Almost certainly a scam. If you want to prove it, ask the seller for the name and address of the shipping company. Let her know the great news that your cousin lives just over an hour from Milford and is willing to drive over to inspect the boat for you in the next day or so. I'd bet that you never hear from her again. Or if you do, the boat 'can not be inspected' due to COVID or that it's in a 'bonded warehouse' or some other nonsense.
  23. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Great Video, Kelly! You have me regretting putting my UFO away for the season.... I don't know much about go pros or making videos, but clearly your camera has some sort of motorized gimbal on it that lets it spin around to look backwards at you driving, or forwards where the boat is going. How does the camera 'know' which way to point? Does it simply follow some pre-programmed schedule? Its a great looking video! Doug
  24. Champlain Sailor

    best new foiler for beginner?

    So has anyone sailed a Skeeta in the US yet? I'm eager to hear what the sailors think, particularly those that have experience rigging and sailing the Waszp, UFO, and/or Moth.
  25. Champlain Sailor

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Kelly, I interpreted your question as why shouldn't you position the main foil in the aft 2 positions. It should definately be mechanically possible. I've tried it several times, as you suggest, in lighter air to try to get earlier liftoff. In my experience, it simply creates more drag, and the boat goes slower, so you are actually farther from takeoff. I've measured the boatspeed with my speedpuck in 6-8 knots of breeze and I seem to lose about a knot of boatspeed pulling the mainfoil back to one notch behind the middle position. I'm 180 pounds, perhaps this technique would work with a lighter skipper. Or, you may be able to tune your sail for more power than i got from mine. But I have not found any scenario where the aft two settings work for me. By the way, 'hitting a manatee' definately the coolest way to break a UFO part. Hopefully the manatee wasn't injured.