TeamFugu

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About TeamFugu

  • Rank
    Super Anarchist
  • Birthday 06/18/1960

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    wasabi_sushi@hotmail.com
  • Website URL
    http://www.xmission.com/~rharper
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    fugu_sailor

Profile Information

  • Location
    SLC, UT
  • Interests
    Sailing skiffs, racing, rigging, et al.

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  1. TeamFugu

    The Future of One Design

    I think there will always be an appetite for the monopoly classes. Most people see the act of building a boat as a barrier to entry. Not so much that they can't complete with the best builders, but that they don't have the resources(time, money, skill, other) required to build. I think the Swift Solo has been suffering from this over the years. The other issue is that since the boats aren't popped out of molds, they are a bit more expensive to have one of the few builders to build a boat for you. Oddly, everyone thinks that the hull is the issue. I would say that at least 75% of my Swift is in the rigging. The hull was relatively easy to build and didn't cost a ton for materials. Class rules can be written in such a way that the boats don't become an arms race but at the same time, there isn't much reason to enter arms races in dinghys because there isn't a return on investment other than the thrill of sailing something you've built. We don't attract the big names and the big sponsors like the maxi yachts.
  2. TeamFugu

    V15 Bow stiffening

    You might also consider going around the waves. Get your head out of the boat and look for the flat spots. Often there is a pattern to waves. Every seventh wave is often a big one followed by a flat spot. Search for the flat spots and look ahead. I've been sailing on landmines that aren't as maneuverable as a dinghy and one driver, pounding on the waves averages a 4.5 hull speed in 30kts of wind. Another, not banging on the waves, and the average rose to over 6. I do the same thing on my Swift. Oddly, I also search for the flat spots going down wind to avoid running into the wave. We don't surf because we are usually out running the waves.
  3. TeamFugu

    Dinghy Racing Is Fucking Awesome!

    I have to agree. For the most part, dinghy sailing is about your ability and sailing, not about your wallet. There are some with outsized egos but they are fewer than in the big boats where you can compensate with your wallet. The other thing I like about dinghy sailing, wherever I've been, you're always part of the brotherhood. You don't have to show any other qualification than being able to keep the stick in the air and make it around the course.
  4. TeamFugu

    Cup Holders

    Most that I've seen get larger water bottles and trap them between the rack and the deck. I have a pocket on my Swift Solo's spinnaker sock and I put two in there, then often can get two to stay under the sock where the jib track holds it down. I've only lost a couple over the years. I saw someone who put bike bottle racks on the inside of the deck by the transom. I don't think this is a good idea. You might be able to rig something with Velcro at the mast base.
  5. TeamFugu

    Do you grease your pole?

    I wouldn't. Grease would pick up dirt and other abrasives that will make matters worse. Then a little would sluff of and coat the deck and other gear. I let someone use a windsurfer I had once. They had a lot of tanning oil. It took several washings with detergent before I could stand on the damn thing again. Stick to the spray, or if there is enough room, maybe some teflon tape.
  6. TeamFugu

    Buying a moth

    At $5,000, I'd think the boat would be very beat and very close to its last legs. It might spend more time(read $$$) in the shop than on the water. What I know of an A-Cat vs Moth. A Moth is very quick to rig, easy to car top, and easy to launch. An A-Cat, though a lovely boat, is a beast. You can't rig it and walk away for lunch where you can sort of do that with a Moth laying on its side like a windsurfer. You also can't car top an A-cat without some help. The boat is VERY light but they are so large that they are just too much for one person to load on top. Thus always needing a trailer that either tilts, the boat is too wide for the road, or you have to break it down so it will fit inside the lanes. While you're saving your pennies, try to find a local boat and bribe the owner to allow you to take it out now and then.
  7. TeamFugu

    When to gybe

    I agree with Jethrow the most. At high winds, because of VMG, a little more around 80 degrees from the bow. Light winds, almost 100. The bigger key to a good gybe is to do it at full speed. If you allow the boat to drop off a plane, you'll have a handful. Make all of your tacks and gybes with as much speed as possible and the boat will be much easier to handle. Backing off the throttle on a skiff just increases the swimming lessons.
  8. TeamFugu

    AERO’s D Day Liberation Invasion

    The problem isn't so much cost as Ovington doesn't produce many and a friend of mine who used to be the USA representative couldn't get boats for pending orders shipped to the US. He has since dropped the sponsorship and it has gone to someone else because he couldn't meet commitments. Lasers are built in most major countries so sourcing boats in the US isn't a problem.
  9. TeamFugu

    AERO’s D Day Liberation Invasion

    It will be interesting to see what people think of the boat. Do they have US builder or do they have to come across the pond? I think without a US builder, it will be hard to keep growth at any kind of pace. But then if you're going to upgrade, I would go all the way to the Musto (though it has been very hard to get Ovington to provide enough boats) or the RS-700.
  10. TeamFugu

    Dinghy Boots

    What do you expect from your boots. I've settled on split toe surfing boots. But then I don't hike out with a strap over my foot. On the string, I need max grip and like to grab the rails with my toes so a soft sole surfing boot is great. The split toe keeps the boot from rolling on me. When I did sail a Laser, I soon ditched boots for shoes. I had boots for a bit but found them a pain when trying to swim after a capsize and then held the water so my feet would start to get sore at long regattas. I'd probably stick with the surfing boots and maybe add some padding to the top if I were to start sailing Lasers again.
  11. TeamFugu

    Square heads

    More sail area to fit under the box rule. With the wind shear, more twist isn't an issue. The sails respond well when matched with the rig properly. They do, however, have a lot of drag and load up quite a bit when the boats are sub planing speeds. I think square head sails require better mast/rig tuning. The twist is controlled more with the cunningham and mast bend than the boom vang.
  12. First, I'd start with spending more time crewing and getting used to the trapeze. An old Contender might be a good start. You might be able to find a bit of a beater boat that you won't worry too much about. I've never sailed a Laser Vortex. I spent a lot of time on a 505 as helm and crew. I now sail a Swift Solo. When you get ready to move up the performance ladder, take a look at the Musto Skiff, RS 700, Swift Solo, or similar. Single handing on with a kite up is quite the rush. I'm kind of an immersion type person. Just go all in and learn to enjoy the swimming lessons along the way. Bear in mind that even the top, world class, sailors spent their time swimming in the beginning. The hard lesson to learn is that speed is your friend. The boats get more stable and gybing is easier at max speed. Trapeze boats have a bit more sail and the rig loads up and becomes way too much power to manage when not on a plane going as fast as you can. Once up to full speed, the boats handle much better.
  13. TeamFugu

    Enclosed Dinghy Trailer

    I haven't ever seen a half height utility trailer. I have one I keep my Swift Solo in. I love it because it keeps the boat out of the weather and I leave my gear in side so packing up to go is easier. I also added a hoist to carry a second boat above the one on the floor. When I get to the venue, I use the trailer as a camper when I can. My recommendation would be to see if you can find an aluminum one. Mine is very heavy. Also if you get one with a pointed front end, it will make dragging it down the highway easier. Another option would be to get a flat bed trailer and build your own box on top.
  14. TeamFugu

    Youth evolution in sailing

    I have long had the same complaint. When we send our football stars on to college, we don't suddenly make them play flag football. The reason I am always told is that it is about participation, not building better sailors through competition. For me, the participation should be with a sailing club that teaches sailing and has a lot of formal and informal events within the school. The racing against teams should be at the highest level. One problem is that the more advanced boats cost a lot and colleges don't spend much money other than the big five sports. I still think it is sad that racing in college is mostly another reason to party and only a few teams or schools take it seriously, and that says more about the members of the team than it does about collegiate athletics.
  15. TeamFugu

    Which way the wind blows

    I don't use them. At most, maybe some yarn on the shrouds. I sail mostly by the tell-tails on the sail and speed of the boat. I hate masthead vanes. I get a crick in my neck and loose sight of what is happening on the course. I grew up sailing with an old guy that just used his ears. He'd look into the wind until the wind was equal on both ears and that was where the wind was coming from. Seriously.