Charlie P Mayer

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About Charlie P Mayer

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  • Birthday 05/09/1953

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  1. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    Michele: In order of creation, I think. Martin has more videos. I haven't watched these in awhile. I look really clumsy. Embarrassing. Nah - not really embarrassed. All for fun. I do laugh at myself when I watch them, though.
  2. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    September 2018: I towed a modified S9 and a UFO from Texas to Miami. Martin purchased the UFO from me. We sailed the UFO, Martin's Whisper, and the S9 all around Biscayne Bay. A well-sailed Weta joined us. We swapped boats, crews, and sailing stories for a few days. Great food, good company, terrific experience. First 40 seconds or so I am sailing the S9 and Martin and crew Alec are on the Whisper. Later it's Martin on the S9 and me sailing with Alec on the Whisper. The S9 is equipped with a bow-spreader bar to support the pole for a code Zero (not used in this video). Furling drum is visible at the end of the spin pole. The VIRB camera is mounted on a carbon tube taped to the end of the spin pole. This arrangement exaggerated any camera movement. Wand tension helps control ride height - adjusted with a bungee. Does seem a little too tight here. Lessening the tension smoothes the ride a bit. There are several more videos of that event posted somewhere upthread. Would love to do that event again.
  3. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    I forgot this: yes, I am happy I bought the S9s.
  4. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    Ok, perhaps we need to move some posts to a new thread: 2020 A-Cat development (or similar) Back on track: 4-year S9 ownership report: (Skipper report for reference: Hobie Trifoiler, Windrider Rave, GC 32 (passenger), S9, UFO, Whisper, potful of other multihulls. I'm not a great sailor - club hack at best, but I get a kick out of sailing anything different. ) S9s number 08 and 09 showed up in March of 2016 - they live on a central Texas lake with clear water and puffy, inconsistent wind. We trained about 25 skippers on these boats - videos of our successes and failures posted upthread, warts and all. We didn't hide anything. Fun department: S9 is the easiest boat to sail of all the foilers I've sailed. If you can trap on any cat, you can foil the S9 in your first 2 minutes on the boat. 20 knots is easy. As mentioned above by SimonN - not sure anything above that would be desirable on the S9. Or safe. Foiling downwind or on a reach is a real hoot. If you are sailing just for fun S9 is hard to beat. S9 is a great training boat for anyone new to foiling. Learning the UFO and Whisper was much easier for me because of my time on the S9. Foiling gybes are possible. You need good timing and good wind. Not fun department: Beach launching is a chore - same issues as other foilers. Upwind: the wands and flaps act as brakes unless you are foiling, but bearing off to foil yields too much gauge. After you round the corner all is good. Light air with boat chop: boat and sails are not made for this - really slow in these conditions - might as well stay home or break out your A Cat floater. Furling spinnaker: I thought this would make the boat more competitive in light airs - but not so. It looks cool while steady-state sailing, but 4-point standing rigging and extra complexity make transitions a disaster. Useful in non-foiling conditions only. Again - the boat was not made for this. Cost: shipping costs alone make the boat not competitive with other options. Same issue with anything new coming here. Not unique to S9. Course racing: as mentioned by others far upthread, this is not a good boat for competitive course racing against other boats. Best in heavy air. Small boat, small sails, narrow sweet spot. Of course, it just might be me that sucks, not the boat. Class: Not many in country - 10? We've had maybe 3 races with an S9 class in 4 years. SCHRS rating seems to be about right in mixed fleets. Durability: We broke many hiking sticks and trap bungees at first. When things go south the lesson is: keep the sheet - ditch the stick! Broke two wands getting the boat off the trailer. Broke a metal fitting on the wand mechanism - Michele sent me a new one Fed Ex. Good support from the builder. No maintenance ever on the wand system. Teleflex cables and fittings are quite understressed in this application. Might require more attention in salt water. Foils quite durable - no issues with flaps or fittings. Pure terror department: 1) Heavy air, downwind, on the wire, really ripping: helm is very sensitive, you have to be very smooth or you get pitched so fast you end up on YouTube. Getting off the wire and back on the boat without drama is not easy. Or predictable. Slowing down to maneuver is difficult. 2) Heavy air pre-start maneuvering with other boats around: you can't easily slow down or maneuver quickly without planning far ahead. You learn this pretty quickly. Summary: Boat is well made, durable, and great fun. Good support from the builder. Good solution for a training foiler or pure recreational boat. Charlie Mayer
  5. Charlie P Mayer

    A cat trailer

    I bought two of these Trailex A-Cat trailers in Ohio. Great product, but I don't think it will be economically efficient to ship them to you.
  6. Charlie P Mayer

    Which foiling cat should i get? Advice appreciated

    SilverFoiler: Don't get too excited about sailing any foiling cat in light conditions - kinda like drag racing with a throttle stuck on idle. Helm on a foiler can get twitchy at speed. Your trapeze skills will need to be honed for sailing any cat foiler - I'm not sure your Dart experience will be much help to you. I think Moth sailors and kite foilers like you would be seriously under-challenged with the S9. S9 is great for a single-hander learning to foil, or for single-handed recreational sailors going out just for the fun of it (like me). Not optimal for hosting a gf. It needs a little breeze to be fun - but it handles high winds just fine. Yes, I think the Whisper may be a good fit for you. I think it needs a 10:1 mainsheet instead of the 4:1 I sailed, but hey, just my opinion. As mentioned above by some quite credible posters, every boat has it's niche. I recommend holding off on buying a foiling cat until you actually sail one that fits your requirements. Perhaps you can swap a sail on your Moth for a sail on a foiling cat. Or several. You'll make some new friends and be more informed for an actual purchase. Disclaimer: I bought three foilers before I ever sailed them. Worked out ok for me - but ymmv.
  7. Charlie P Mayer

    marginal thinking

    Thank you for your comment Dave. As you described above, kinetics in small boats can make a huge difference in your results. I've always believed that the rules regarding kinetics should be waived for all boats. It would be great fun to watch the J-22 Fleet rocking their way to the weather mark on a slick lake, wouldn't it? Not traditional of course, but faster and more fun, too. Our sport seems to focus on ruling out ways to make a boat go faster. Perhaps we should focus on how to have more fun sailing, rather than on trivial details such as how to hold a spinnaker sheet. To paraphrase Elon Musk, perhaps the best rule is no rule, especially if that rule is illogical or obsolete. Dave, I am too lazy to look it up, do the UFO rules contain any limits on kinetics?
  8. Charlie P Mayer

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    Martin, Great video - maybe the best place to sail foilers in the US! Good to see all those UFOs out there! But - Were those wet suits really necessary? Dave - love your attitude and the way you are growing the Fleet - good job! Charlie
  9. Charlie P Mayer

    iFLY15 - bullshit marketing?

    Happy New Year Erwan! Every boat has its strengths and weaknesses - I don't think blanket conclusions as to which boat is "best" can ever apply to all sailors in all sailing scenarios. Consideration should be given to wind conditions at the vessels' home, the sailing skills of the operator, and the crewing or vessel preferences of the skipper (double-handed, kites, cats, tris, keels, whatever). All of the foilers you mention above have the potential to delight the skipper when sailed in coastal breezes. Quite a different result when those same boats are sailed in puffy or light conditions. Consideration must also be given to launch and retrieval conditions: ocean beach, pier, dock, shallow, weedy, cold water, etc. Sailing skills, experience, and personal preference: In our training sessions with Dave, we found that skippers with extensive dinghy experience seem to transition quite easily to the UFO. Similarly, a sailor with no skills on a trapeze may find the cats more challenging than the UFO, Waszp, or Moth. Our local dinghy crowd had zero interest in foiling cats. Isn't it grand that we have all these options? Anyway, this thread is getting off track, maybe it's time to start a new "Foiler Comparisons and Recommendations" thread and let this thread die. The point's a Fair winds, Charlie
  10. SimonN:

    Spot-on post on Monday's iFly thread.  I appreciate your candor.  

    Charlie Mayer

  11. Charlie P Mayer

    iFLY15 - bullshit marketing?

    I watched the iFly video above and I have first-hand experience with multiple tow tests using a ski boat to tow the S9. First: There is too much wind-induced mini-chop in the first half of the video to meet my definition of "no wind". Your definition of "no wind" may differ from mine. Second: Our results were remarkably similar to what is shown in the video - but we had a lot more laughing and chatter between boats than I heard on that video. Third: The S9 did indeed catch up to the tow boat - more than once. Quite exciting - alarming actually - because the tow line can turn into a liability in a heartbeat. The details: tow line lashed to the middle of the front beam, no wind at the start of the tow, 7 or 8 knots boat speed, S9 starts to barely foil, bow-up attitude, directly behind the ski boat. A little puff materializes, and the S9 suddenly accelerates directly toward the ski boat - slacking the tow line and panicking all of us. We didn't expect that. The tow line was in danger of going under the S9, threatening the wands and/or the main foils. Not good. Difficult to make the S9 stop foiling, equally difficult to accelerate the ski boat and not cause a huge jerk to the S9. The lesson: hand-hold the tow line on the S9 (did they cut the tow line in the iFly video?). The S9 would indeed foil a bit after getting towed up onto the foils, but after releasing the tow line it would just coast down to displacement mode. iFly looks like a nice boat - but the cost is quite a bit more than the S9. The S9 and i-Fly may be easier to sail than a foiling A-Cat, but by the time shipping and customs costs are applied to get them to the US, neither is cost competitive with used foiling A-Cats. The higher cost doesn't change the fun factor .
  12. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    I have videos posted somewhere.......S9 drifts away faster than I can swim - a lot faster. Tethering yourself to the boat adds other issues - like drowning under the nets, but heck - that's your call. Mast is sealed - we capsized maybe 50 times (no exaggeration) - the only time we ever saw a turtle was when a hull was seriously holed - and that happened twice. S9 is pretty durable and the behavior is predictable - all good for surviving an offshore sail. But I would never attempt a surf launch with an S9. Tried to think of a reasonable exception, but kept coming up with reasons why not. Anybody here try an A cat surf launch? Would like to see videos of that. In my experience uni-rigs and surf launches don't work well together. (I made many surf launches on the Texas coast with a Prindle 15 and a Hobie 17 - almost always successful, but those boats were tanks compared to an S9 or A Cat.) (Full disclosure: I also rolled a Hobie 14 Turbo and a Prindle 15 into little pieces in the surf - but both of those were on the way in, not out.) I would happily take the S9 offshore if I had sailing buddies nearby - sailing or RIB. But starting point would not be a surfy beach (is "surfy" a word?). I don't think it would be prudent to take an S9 offshore under the conditions described above. But again, my definition of "offshore" may not be the same as yours.
  13. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    I know nothing of all the baggage associated with the long-gone Bimare brand. I know Michele first posted news of his new A-Cat here. And I know the A-Cat part of this thread needs to move elsewhere. Please.
  14. Charlie P Mayer

    14' Stunt S9 Foiling Cat

    Erwankerauzen, I don't understand what would motivate you to such an attack on ita 16. Would you enlighten us, please?
  15. Charlie P Mayer

    Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

    stuartbutton: I'm afraid my advice is a bit obsolete - pretty sure martin.langhoff or someone else on here can fix you right up - enjoy!