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About RockHead

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    Super Anarchist
  • Birthday 04/14/1965

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    Marblehead, MA

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  1. RockHead

    Looking for a Sonar mast

    We could supply a new one from Charleston Spars, I don't know of any used ones around.
  2. RockHead

    boat advice requested

    I haven't been keeping up with SA so much lately, but here I am! Dances, If you want info on either the K1 or K6, let me know ( Briefly: K1 is a true singlehander. Bulb keel, self-tacking jib with a dangly pole for offwind. It's quite a nice sailing boat. Ridiculously easy to rig and launch from mast down to sailing. Sitting on its dolly/trailer with the rig up, it's nothing to launch and go sailing. We just shipped one to the PNW, that must be Amati. He's the sole owner in the US, there are a couple of hundred in the UK. Not a boat you could take a couple of friends sailing on. We have a demo boat, but I've sort of lost track of where it is, I probably ought to track it down. LOL K6 is the big brother, similar hull form, and design philosophy. 19 feet, tube-launched asym kite with shingle-line hoist/retrieve. Designed as a 2-person boat, simple to sail. Paul Young, owner of Rondar, 5o5 lover at heart, wanted a simpler boat to club race with his wife or one of his sons, with 5-oh-ish performance, but wouldn't get he and his wife dumped for a mistake. Lovely sailing boat with powerful controls, self-tacking jib. I've singlehanded it in up to 12-15 knots with the kite up. It's quite manageable and a lot of fun. Also easy to rig, even by one person. Carbon mast is 25 pounds with wires, easy to step alone. Many people race them with 3. There's a fleet at American YC in Rye, NY and the "secret" fleet at St. Regis YC in upstate NY. Couple of hundred in the UK also. Both are responsive and rewarding to sail. PM or email if you want to learn more about either.
  3. Props to the GYA juniors for shutting down the old folks, who prior to this event were saying, "Kids & women need smaller kites & mains on them thar Vippers." BS. And there's a video of a blue blazer type admitting so. I LOVE that one. I was at GYA Junior Liptons a couple of years ago, watched the juniors race Flying Scots and said, "The kids are alright!" The smiles on the faces in those videos tell the tale. The kids are pumped to have a fun boat to race. And THAT is why the GYA went through an arduous multi-year selection process and picked the Viper. Three/four years ago there were all of 3 Vipers in the Gulf coast. Now there are about 50. New Viper ordered from the GYA today, SoCal last week, Annapolis 2-3 weeks ago, Charleston/Tampa tomorrow at a lunch meeting... One boat at a time, the Viper class continues to grow steadily
  4. RockHead

    Looking for a Viper 640 mast

    We just sold the alloy one we had lying around the warehouse. I think someone in Canada has a broken one that could be spliced back together. Find the Great Lakes Viper group on FB and ask there
  5. The Viper Class takes a sort of unique approach to pro sailors. They're welcome to sail, but you can't pay them. So you see guys like Zeke Horowitz (2017 Viper World Champ) racing for North, and Brad Boston racing for Doyle-Boston (many time Viper NA Champ), but they're racing with their mates for fun, as well as for the glory and bragging/selling rights for their sails. So they are VERY open with set-up, tuning and strategic advice. More like the old days of the J/24. This weekend at Annapolis NOOD, Zeke led a post-race debrief along with Jackson Benvenuto (also North, 2017 Viper NA Champ) for the Viper fleet, even though they were racing J/22s that day. They put the top 3 skippers up and questioned them about set-up and speed, adding in their experience. You also see pros like Geoff Ewenson sailing with his wife, though she won without him as he was off being paid to race on a Pac52. I'm a Cat 3 because I sail with people I've sold Vipers to. I sailed with my 18 y.o. daughter in Annapolis and a recently retired Navy commander who owned a Viper in 1997 and wants back in now. He hadn't been on a sailboat in 15 years. We had a blast as he shook the rust off. Stamped our authority on 8th place! (of 9). LOL But we may soon be bumping the Annapolis fleet up to 12 boats from 9, which will be a tipping point we expect. One of those switching from the J/70 fleet, and one from 5o5. It's all about what you're looking for in a Class, it's as much about the people and the culture as the boat. Though the boat should be fun to sail, even when you're coming in next to last!
  6. RockHead

    NYYC One Design

    Beat me to it. Those are the very reasons the GYA adopted the Viper. And it's more affordable than all those mentioned. PM me if you want to learn more about the GYA's selection process. And the guy that skippered the winning NYYC Invitational entry followed it up by winning a hard-fought 54-boat Viper North American Championship a couple of weeks later. Got himself nominated for a Rolex, with both events cited as the reasons. For me, nothing but props to NYYC for what they do to promote and provide actual sailboat racing. We built them a batch of new Sonars a couple of years ago to add to their club fleet for team racing regattas and member club racing in Newport. I was also fortunate enough to crew on the RPAYC entry in the 2015 Invitational, through Aussie Viper connections. It is truly a world class regatta -for preparation and competitiveness, on par with Paralympic sailing in my experience, but quite a bit posher. The new boat is only going to make it a more spectacular event IMO.
  7. Hugh, Thank you for the opportunity to resolve your issue. To be honest, I was the beneficiary of the timing of the work that others at Rondar had done to ensure that you did get your sails. I'm sorry that it didn't happen in line with your expectations, but I'm happy that we got it done for you in the end. We consider our customers to be our friends. Particularly at regattas for the classes we build, we sail, eat, drink and socialize with so many customers so often that our customers do become our friends. I've hosted customers in my home, as many of them have done for me. Many customers know my kids, my female partner and even my ex-wife. We don't like to disappoint friends and future friends with business mistakes. Rondar is not a big company, we're a few humans running the public facing side, and we do make mistakes and have bad days. We always want to make it right for our customers ultimately, when we do inevitably foul up from time to time. As mentioned privately, it does take some time from the order to pass from Rondar to North UK to North production in Sri Lanka and turn it all around and ship stuff from production to North UK to Rondar UK to a client in the US. In hindsight, our biggest failures were a combination of managing the process tightly and managing expectations appropriately. The old line about two countries separated by a common language also comes to mind. Sometimes just having a fresh set of ears and eyes from the same culture can make a difference. That's really where I came in. Enjoy your K6 with your new sails! I miss having one, it's a lovely boat to sail. If you ever need any advice, parts or anything else, let me know, you know how to reach me! And Mambo, thanks for the reminder, I haven't been to Maddies for the $10 burger and 24 oz PBR lunch special for ages. I know where I'm going tomorrow! I may require a power nap after that lunch, leave a message, I'll get back to you. It's a tax-deductible business meal now as a result of this exchange, right??
  8. We've taken this to direct communication
  9. I'm sorry you've had an unsatisfactory experience ordering sails with Rondar. Call me at +1.781.799.8132 or email and I'll get it resolved to your satisfaction. Dan Tucker VP Marketing & Sales Rondar Raceboats USA
  10. Idems are gorgeous. And they have only ever raced at St. Regis YC, on just that one single lake. They bought a small fleet of K6's a few years ago too, so I spent some time up there with them. Unique racing- fixed racecourse, circling the lake, regardless of conditions. They race these 118-year-old wooden boats hard. Incredible traditions on the lake. Lots of gorgeous classic motorboats also, including at least one stunning launch built by the Electric Boat Company of Groton, CT. Yes, THAT Electric Boat Company that currently builds nuclear submarines. Truly an interesting place to visit sail. I need to go back sometime and sail an Idem!
  11. RockHead

    Boat Transport Drama

    Model tow vehicle is a Mustang. Those are built to crash. See every Cars & Coffee exit video ever... Here's blue one, just like the model And another
  12. RockHead

    Looking for my next boat

    This? And World Sailing International Class status PM me for info on new or used boats
  13. RockHead

    Funniest Lines Heard While Racing

    J/24 Worlds in Rochester a few years ago. Offset mark was poorly placed, or there was shift, so the offset was to weather of the windward mark. Friend's boat didn't notice that little detail, so tacked onto port on the offset leg in front of 50 boats piling in. Driver- Are we crossing? Are we crossing?? Bow- I am, I don't know about you
  14. RockHead

    2017- Fort Walton-Viper North Americans

    Racing area is behind a low barrier island for flat water, with pretty reliable seabreeze. Gorgeous white sand beaches. The host club, Fort Walton YC is very laid back and has loads of space. It's about a 5 minute sail from the dock to the racing area. Local knowledge: beware of the bushwackers. I hope we're going to see attendance in the 60's.
  15. RockHead

    What's happened to the VX One ?

    Moving further towards "Gentleman Farmer" mode Ultra? Wait, can that happen in the ROT??