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About T39andcounting

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    Whitstable, UK
  1. T39andcounting

    Umm, tiller?

    Lots of suppliers online, although unlike carbon, the shipping cost is usually more than the tube, so worth buying several lengths so you have spares. Also, how tall are you? I'm 2m tall, and find I need a tube longer than 2.5m to be comfortable, but often the max length is 2.5m, so I end up with one smaller that fits into the other (either carbon or aluminium). I have an aluminium stick on my Dart 18 (class legal for single handed sailing) and a carbon one on my Tornado. Similar lengths, and the carbon is significantly lighter and easy to manage! Also, if you're in a cold climate, aluminium leaches the warmth from your hands far more quickly than carbon!
  2. T39andcounting

    Umm, tiller?

    I think you just have to train your brain not to hold onto the solid feeling thing that you're holding as you fall off the back! Took me a few capsizes before I held onto the mainsheet and let go of the tiler, (although once you have snapped it, hold onto the other half as it could be useful!).
  3. T39andcounting

    Umm, tiller?

    Make one! I'm not a fan of adjustable, and needed a new tiler extension and tiler bar for my Tornado, so I bought the carbon poles, tiler extension joint and made it up, for a bit less than buying it would have cost! For the tiler bar, I picked up some delrin rod for either end and drilled it.
  4. T39andcounting

    Revitalising the East Coast Australian Tornado Fleet

    As a member of one of those teams(!), we switched from an F18 to a Tornado. If you can find the right F18 (make and model with the right Hull shapes and buoyancy for bigger crew, lake or sea sailing, etc), and get the sails cut for heavy weight, you can probably be more competitive on an F18. However, the Tornado seems more accommodating and fun to race for a heavier crew. So again, bang for buck wise, IMHO get a Tornado, but if your priority is winning the circuit, get an F18, but prepare to spend a lot more, and spend a lot more time researching for the right boat.
  5. T39andcounting

    Furling Spinnakers on beach cats?

    I've seen furling Spinnakers on a few fast catamarans recently, mainly foilers. The AC boats had them, and they seem to be trickling down to the smaller boats like the Flying Phantom. Is this just a foiling thing, or is there a benefit to non-foilers? Is it just class rules holding back the F18 for example?
  6. T39andcounting

    Revitalising the East Coast Australian Tornado Fleet

    Nice one. Similar resurgence seems to be happening in Whitstable, UK. For us weekend club racers, the Tornado packs significantly more bang for buck than F18s, and is a 'nicer' sail. Similar reason that the Dart 18 and Dart 15 are still going strong... Solid, well tested designs, relatively cheap, but still with a decent sized class and circuit. When I bought our Tornado last year, I was very tempted to by another good example that was for sale at the same place, and now rather wish I had! Good on you for taking a risk and supporting a great class! As for the comment on "Support a local class", in my experience classes wax and wain. Currently the number of F18s is dropping, and Tornados are increasing at my club. But either way, we sail on handicap, so we can still have good racing between F18s, Hurricanes, A Class and Tornados.
  7. T39andcounting

    Best Race Committee Boats

    I was going to suggest the same, that's what we use. Far quicker and easier than running flags up and down halyards.
  8. T39andcounting

    F18: who takes the main upwind?

    Yep, definitely the crew. The only thing the helm might want to keep is the traveller line.
  9. T39andcounting

    where'd ya go?

    I think one of the issues is that it's hard to make sailing interesting to watch as a sport. Some of the Olympics Sailing and America's Cup was OK to watch, but it's very weather dependent. If it's not a sport people are willing to watch, it's hard to make it appeal to advertisers. You've also got the added complexity of the water environment (weather, boats, Health & Safety, salt water, etc) which makes it hard to put an ad together. Compared to some of the other 'extreme sports': Snowboarding/Skiing - Yes, it's cold, but you have a large weather window, and you're on the land. Surfing - Sit on a beach, and wait for the right wave. Shoot most/all of the images from the land. Bike/Skateboard - Find the right backdrop and shoot. As long as it's not raining, you're OK. Sailing is just hard in comparison!
  10. T39andcounting

    Best Race Committee Boats

    We have a Colne Cat 7m (no Design Catamarans: https://www.designcatamarans.com/) at Whitstable Yacht Club for dinghy and catamaran race starts. Based on a fishing boat, offset cockpit to provide full access to the port side, nice and stable, and pretty fast. All the visiting PROs love it! They're difficult to find second hand as they're very popular with small scale professional fishermen, so we ordered it new 5 years ago, and fitted it out using club volunteer labour (thanks Stuart, Jason and Ian!).
  11. T39andcounting


    "Don't tack yet, I think the sheet's got tangled around something...."
  12. T39andcounting

    F18 ownership costs

    ACS In my experience, at my local clubs, F18 sailors tend to have and sail older boats, keep their boats for longer, and the class has a more settled design, so less significant tweaking or changes. That contrasts with the A-Class and Moth sailors I know who spend a lot of time tweaking, and a lot of money on the latest developments and designs - more carbon fibre, more options, and greater gains by having the latest kit and tweaks. Yes, you can also do that on the F18, but I'd suggest that there's a lot less competitive difference between a brand new F18 and a well maintained 5 year old F18 than there is between a brand new A-Class/Moth and a 5 year old A-Class/Moth. So, if you're a club racer who doesn't want to be disadvantaged by not having the cutting edge kit, I'd say that the F18 is the lower time/cost option. If you're at the top of the fleet of the Nationals/Worlds, then there's probably not much in it. But if you have the time and skills to be able to do/build it yourself, and enjoy testing the latest developments, then the Moth/A-Class is probably the better fit where there's more room in the class to explore.
  13. T39andcounting

    F18 ownership costs

    The moth sailors (and a-class sailors) I know with the cutting edge boats are all either retired, have very flexible work schedules, or deep pockets. There's maintenance on an F18, and that varies boat by boat, but not in the same league as a Moth.
  14. T39andcounting

    F18 ownership costs

    If you're thinking of spending the money on upgrading a 14 year old boat, is it going to get you enough bang for your buck? Better off putting that towards a new(er) boat with longer foils and better all round kit in my opinion.
  15. T39andcounting

    Whitstable Forts Race

    Calling UK and European catamaran sailors - It's the Whitstable Forts Race Weekend on 9th and 10th September. This is a unique long distance race, utilising a hub and spoke format to take boats around the sights of the North Kent coast (including the iconic World War 2 Red Sands Sea Forts), whilst keeping the fleet in a relatively condensed area for safety, and allowing for the provision of course shortening and options for prizes! The race is open to double handed beach cats from Dart 18 and faster, and most popular boats are Dart 18, Formula 18, Hurricane 5.9, Spitfire and Tornado. We're also usually visited by a few of the top developmental foiling boats, including Will Sunnocks' M20 Vampire Project. The race is sailed from Whitstable Yacht Club, which is less than 90 minutes from London, and less than an hour from the Dover and Folkstone links into mainland Europe. For more information, see http://wyc.org.uk/on-the-water/forts-race