Steve Clark

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400 F'n Saint


About Steve Clark

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    Super Anarchist

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  • Location
    Where the water is thin.
  • Interests
    Human folly.

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  1. Steve Clark

    Pic of your wooden dinghy sailing.

    From the days when Not Sinking was one of the accepted challenges of I 14 racing. 14s had used reefing gear, and there was a tradition that if the committee boat could hold station, the race was on. These are very much like the first 14s I ever saw at Buzzards Bay Bowls in the 1960s. It is also remarkable how sensible and accessible these boats appear. It’s hard to see the actual connection to the modern 14, even though we all know it is there. I recall marveling at Glen Fosters mid boom sheeting and Proctor ballbearing traveler. Stuart Walker had a boom with little jumper struts on the bottom to stiffen it. SHC
  2. Steve Clark

    Craigslist Finds

    A really nice boat for a young fella such as yourself. Don’t get too ambitious, rub down the varnish and make sure the grain is sealed so water doesn’t get in and start that rotting thing. Don’t worry about making it a show piece, there is a difference between maintenance and vanity. Make sure the tanks don’t leak so you can right the boat after you capsize and can sail home. Also make sure the rudder can’t fall off if the boat turns turtle. Seeing the rudder float away is very discouraging, and swimming after it can kill you. This is going to be way more fun than the little scow you built, and will answer your question about wooden boats going fast. You will need to find a friend to share the adventure. SHC
  3. Steve Clark

    Just got a c-lark.

    Willy, Your great grandfather actually had a boat named Sea Lark. C Larks were built by Clark Boat Company in Kent Washington. I seem to recall that they were similar in concept to Jet 14s in that they were based on recent but no longer competitive International 14 hull shapes with decks and smaller rigs. The Jet 14 is based on the Uffa Fox Alarm design. I think the C Lark is a Proctor V. SHC
  4. Steve Clark

    Bi plane rigged wing mast cat pros and cons?

    The major disadvantage of biplane rigs is cost. Two rigs costs more than one rig. Free standing wings that can rotate 360 degrees are safest because they can always be feathered, and at 0 degrees AOA have less drag than a bare poles normal rig, which is important if weathering a storm in a multihull. Freestanding a mast on a catamaran is a difficult problem, but can be solved. Freestanding on a trimaran ,however, is a no brainer. It takes some thinking to actually get to the place where the masts can rotate freely because there is so much interconnecting crap between the hull and the mast. The UFO jumper system permits saving quite a bit of weight by using the jumpers to control mast bend instead of laminate. It also permits adjusting the stiffness of the mast for different conditions. It also cost a lot less than the alternatives. SHC
  5. Steve Clark

    To Foil or not to Foil, that is the question

    The pre hydrofoil A Cat is a very sweet boat. In a normal breeze you fly a hull up wind and down. One reason for this is that they are light. By comparison every beach cat is a tank, so you have to treat the A with much more care because they are built to be strong enough to sail fast, but not strong enough to be abused. One reality of the A cat is that it will leave you swimming a long way from shore if you ever take your hands off it. When capsized, they blow downwind about twice as fast as you can swim. If you fall off, they just sail away. The Foiling A has some nasty tricks and is probably 3 times harder to sail. As a comparison, in the pre foil days no one tipped over in fairly breezy races. In Foiling it seems that one or two boats crash on every down wind leg. SHC
  6. Steve Clark

    Pic of your wooden dinghy sailing.

    One of two current projects: Lake Skiff Sailing Association 14( also called an Ackroyd.). North American ancestor of the International 14. Cool little boats, 140ft^2 gaff cat rig. Needed a new deck, new bones and a few planks but I bought it anyway, because building (re building) is half the fun. SHC
  7. Steve Clark

    I.C. Down wind question

    Sailing an IC is more difficult than sailing a scow. Skiing a black diamond is harder than cruising the cat track. I expect the Melges 17 must have a big kite and get down wind VERY fast if it is indeed the same number as the IC, because I cannot imagine I could even see it at the end of the first beat. This introduces the issue of balance. Do you really want to sail a boat that takes a half hour to get to the top of a two minute ride? That’s too much like waiting in line at Disney Land, but you have to hike out. SHC
  8. Steve Clark

    I.C. Down wind question

    ICs have a reasonably good record in handicap racing in the UK. The windward leeward course is probably the least favorable for the IC but they still hold their own. They compare best when they are hardest to sail, that is when it is blowing hard. They rate about the same as a 505, so you can expect to beat the 5-0 to the windward mark by the amount they will catch up to you on the run. when it isn’t blowing very hard, the IC doesn’t get enough advantage from its superior hull form to make up for the relatively small sail area. SHC
  9. Steve Clark

    Boats for Big Chaps

    Welcome to the camp! SHC
  10. Steve Clark

    Can you identify this "mystery" boat?

    It is a Saroca. An early 80s attempt to be a SAil ROw CAnoe. Not very good at any of it. Fairly interesting construction, but was heavier than it should have been, and suffered as a result. All the parts were also value engineered to the lowest level to try to keep the price down. I have sketched something like this a hundred times, it is fun to think about, but would be expensive to do properly. SHC
  11. One of the open sailing canoe classes has a 45 square foot sail and, by rule) is steered with a paddle. Many have been strip built to about the same spec as this boat. The key point is that the loads in a sailboat are directly proportional to the stability. So if you sit on the bottom and don’t hang your ass over the high side, the loads are really quite low. Steering with a paddle kind of makes it impossible to hike. Nevertheless, these open Canoes are fine little sailboats and sail perfectly safely in most normal conditions. The fastest way up wind will always be rowing. Open Canoe Sailing God, Larry Zuk Sailing his Dragonfly. He sailed this strip built Canoe about 100 days a year for twenty years. This boat was built to almost the same specs as you describe. Please note that only one leeboard is used. On a narrow boat like a canoe, two leeboards are unnecessary. It is fairly typical to put the leeboards thwart just forward of mid length, so that the sailor is mo less over the center of buoyancy, the mast is something like 30” (750mm) forward of that. You can double check by looking up the measurement rules of the Opti. Both mast and dagger board positions are controlled by class rules, and so are on the measurement form. I disagree about Opti rigs. They are perhaps the most highly developed sprit rigs in the history of man. Sprit rigs have a low center of effort, so are good for tender boats. There are also a lot of them around, so you can find good value on pretty techie stuff. SHC
  12. Steve, Im a new (proud) owner of a used Vector.  Im so happy, cannot wait to sail it.   I am / was an FD sailer & Windsurfer.   I hope this boat is the fusion of both !!!

    In researching the boat and Vanguard, I was able to find Bob Ames and your name.   Bob's doing well and shared a little about how the boat came about.   Skiff's are new to me and Im not sure how to rig the Spinnaker & front poll. Also, there are a few odd fittings I cannot figure out.    Bob said he did the hull, while you did all the rigging.  I would love to face-time w/ you and set up the boat he way you designed it.

    Can you pls email me your contact info at <> and we'll connect.

    Thanks, and Im SO Very excited to be a Vector owner. !!!


    1. Steve Clark

      Steve Clark

      I hope you enjoy it as well. The sprit rigging is pretty much the same as every other skiff. It has been a while since I rigged a Vector so I don’t have the scheme on the top of my mind.


    2. MikeGolden


      So Nice to hear from the "creator"... so excited.

      Via SA, 2 other Vector owners connected w/ me and I can ask them ( in detail ) how they rigged their boats... so Im all set on that request.

      Beyond the introduction of the Vector's and their reviews in the publications... do you wish to share any lore about this supercool boat?   Would love to know /learn more about how it cam about.

      Thanks / Be well




  13. contact info for Steve Baker needed, thanks

    1. Steve Clark

      Steve Clark


  14. Steve Clark

    Looking for 25-27 ft phrf rocket...

    More info from Steve Baker She was commissioned by someone who wanted a boat he could take on a leisurely weekend cruise with his wife, or could take out and blast around in with his sons. An asymmetrical chute was requested for the "blasting" condition. In the end, the rig was designed with a 6 ft zippered reef in the main, which made the shortened rig a masthead rig in effect. This was for comfy cruising. To blow around with his sons, a trapeze was fitted (maybe 2? Can't remember), the reef was unzipped, a bowsprit manually inserted in a pipe at the bow, and off they went. I did hear that in the right conditions she would plane upwind, but I never did hear how much upwind. Centreboard, so trailing was easy, but weighted to gather more stability. As mentioned, the 6'4" owner needed to sit up on the head. The apprentices building the house at first thought they were building the dinghy.... In fact, the only two design requirements were that it was faster than his J-24 (no problem) and the afore-mentioned sitting on the head. Looking back on it, I would do a great many things differently now - but that's what learning is all about. Specs: LOA 24'-6" LWL 22' Beam 8'-7" (Pray the cops don't measure...) Draft 7", or 6'-0" depending on board location Displacement excl. crew 1,400 lbs Max crew 4 preferably. i think she has carbon mast SHC
  15. Steve Clark

    Looking for 25-27 ft phrf rocket... Could be very fast in the Chesapeake. The original sail plan was pretty big because owner planned to rip around with one or two teenage sons on wires. Then reef and cruise out to the Elizabeth island with the wife. Steve Baker worked with Roger Martin for years, and knows his shit. I got the link from one of his Facebook posts. He says there were lots of “ not designer approved” modifications. I’m pretty sure he would help get her back into condition. He is a really nice guy. Definitely a project. But also very cheap. SHC