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About pwormwood

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    Palmetto, FL USA
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    performance sailing...LIVING life...

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  1. pwormwood


    I was sailing on a Tripp designed Mercer 44 from St. Petersburg when Improbable came to town for the SORC. We rated about the same, and I remember Improbable just sailing away. That was my first experience with what being out-designed meant.
  2. pwormwood

    new stiletto? any news on this cat?

    Totally agree with the comments about the excessive use of expensive high tech materials in production boats. The fact that the original Stiletto 27 is still a fun boat to sail makes that point. It is a 30 year old design with an antique hull shape, rig and foils; with heave aluminum pipes for beams and absolutely no carbon anywhere. In spite of all of that, the boats are still actively sailed, raced, and desired. The lessons learned at Stiletto should be text book reading for anyone wanting to bring a multihull to market. First of all, although everyone wants a 'fast' boat, only about 10% of the product line will be raced. When Stiletto had built 200 boats, 20 showed up at the Nationals. When 300 boats were built, 30 showed up. Yes, some racers didn't make it, but some of the cruisers did, to take their place. So, do you create your product for the 10% performance-at-all-cost crowd or the 90% fast-is-fun-and-I-want-to-take-my-family-and-friends crowd?! The second crowd will be more swayed by a reasonable price than the bragging rights of having a carbon boat. Interestingly, the Stiletto hull layup weighed 0.6#/sq ft generally (except in built up structural areas). That's pretty light for 30 year old technology, that doesn't include carbon. Original Stiletto also did a good job of recognizing that some of their customers were tinkerers who wanted to upgrade and modify their boats by creating a separate 'Modified' class for racing events. That was the place for carbon masts and foils (and, at the time, spinnakers and upwind well as sailmakers and other pros).
  3. pwormwood

    Oracle Team USA

    So, you guys are still standing atop the dead horse, flailing away...WOW! I always wondered what not having a life looked like....
  4. pwormwood

    laugh or cry?

    OK - How is it that the fishermen were professional mariners, there to feed their families, and the crew of Vestas were not? The fishermen were there to catch fish to either feed their families directly, or through selling the fish. The sailors were there to feed their families through the pay checks they receive from their employer to advertise Vestas' products. Both parties were professional mariners, doing work at sea to earn a living. Neither should be held above the other. If you think the sailors were out for a lark, having fun that night, you've never been in a long open ocean race. As professional sailors, tasked with doing everything that they could do to win, it makes total sense to ask for redress - I certainly would have. Otherwise, I would not be giving my employer full measure for his pay. Whether or not I should receive redress is up to the jury - that's their job. Mine, as the pro sailor, is to ask. AND, having approached many a harbor from sea at night in adverse conditions, I'm totally amused by what I read here about what I should be able to see - looking from a dark and rough sea at a horizon filled with lights. Anyone who has actually been there knows that, for all your best efforts at keeping watch, there is an extremely high likelihood something will suddenly appear, that you'd swear wasn't there before. So maybe, just maybe, some of you should climb down off your high horse and show some compassion and understanding for and of BOTH crews in this incident.
  5. pwormwood


    while it has become apparent that the AC has become a competition between corporations, rather than yacht clubs, I find it hard to root for a corporation. Even though I did not like how Oracle went about their business, as an American, I found myself hoping they'd do well because of the flag on the wing. Similarly, since the American skippered Vestas took themselves out of the Volvo, I find that I've lost interest in the event. So, apparently, nationality matters to some of spite of the foibles of the teams themselves.
  6. pwormwood

    New Volvo 60/IMOCA 60/foiling

    Given the speeds that these boats will be going, I don't understand the resistance to giving the crews more protection. People stopped sitting in open cockpit airplanes (for the most part) a long time ago...and they're not dealing with solid water going the other way at 30+ knots
  7. Let me guess - That's a new AC75 short tacking...
  8. pwormwood

    Team NYYC

    Regarding a helmsman, Bora Gulari seems to know a thing or two about foiling moths. Has he been claimed by a team yet?
  9. pwormwood

    VOR Leg 2 Lisbon to Cape Town

    So, I wonder if any of the boats were in sight of Macif, as she blew past them...
  10. I think that all of those who are looking forward to the return of spinnaker sets and gybes are going to be hugely disappointed. In addition, if the boats are to be as rumored, they are not going to be anymore relatable to the average sailor than the cats were. With the knock on cats being that more sailors relate to monohulls, it seems that they are creating a class that neither multihull sailors nor traditional monohull sailors can relate to. One that certainly will not have the "style & grace" that the Italians so seem to cherish.
  11. As a designer/builder/sailor, who has spent hundreds, and sometimes thousands of hours creating a new boat, the stupidest phrase I have to deal with is "All you have to do is...". As soon as I hear that, I know that the person speaking it doesn't have a clue. It is not a phrase used by a competent designer or builder because they understand the hours that it takes to evaluate and/or execute a solution that works within the matrix of the rest of the design. If you propose a solution that you have not fully vetted in your own mind, and expect the designer or builder to flesh out the pitfalls in your poorly vetted idea, you should expect some level of impatience (that may look like arrogance) from the designer/builder because now he has to take the time to explain to you all the details surrounding the reasons that your suggestion won't work...or is too expensive for the design criteria. Something else that will become apparent when you work boat shows is that (although there exceptions - many here...) the vast majority of sailors are extremely ignorant of the finer points of boat design, building and sailing. This is not to say they aren't smart - they clearly are if they have earned the money to buy the boat. It's that they think that being smart in their profession and winning a couple of races in their local fleet, qualifies them as a a yacht designer. Just as being a yacht designer does not qualify one to perform emergency room surgery. While not equal in scope, both, done poorly, can lead to death. So, before judging the yacht designer on his arrogance, first examine whether your approach to him may have caused his disdain ...
  12. pwormwood

    ac36 mono hull knock-on effect

    I would think that the fact that TNZ sent it's top two New Zealand sailors off for a lap around the planet lasting the better part of a year, covering thousands of miles, is a pretty good indication that the next Cup will be in monohulls - either in the 60 foot range to dovetail in size with the Volvo and Vendee, or 90' to satisfy the Italians desire for 'the grand gesture'.
  13. pwormwood

    AC36 - The Venue

    So, if they want the land for condos, why not build the condos with boat shops on the ground floor, parking above that, and condos above that. That's a real mixed use, with the parking insulating the noise of the boat shops from the condo owners. ...and then rent/sell the condos to the sailors.
  14. pwormwood

    Dennis Pontificates

    Exactly - if you fear the future, run to the past...
  15. pwormwood

    Poll: Next AC Boat

    ^^^Both the 'pumping oil' and 'cats that skate around in a box' were a result of the rule, not the type of boat. So, monohulls could be perceived with the same disdain under a similar rule. As for seaworthyness, hopefully you are both experienced enough sailors that you know that there are multihulls that can handle any offshore condition that a TP52, Maxi 72, or IACC could, with better pace around the track...and fewer crew.