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6 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

 

i have no idea how to go straight downwind... or if that is ever a good idea. 

Marc Jacobi (current RS Aero 9 World Champion) is threatening to run a clinic on downwind sail settings and techniques for the RS Aero at Newport on July 6 before the Newport Regatta on July 7/8.

Charter RS Aeros for the regatta and clinic are available. 

http://events.eventzilla.net/e/rs-aero-charter-at-the-newport-regatta-2138962724

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Threatening.... i like that choice of terms 

I still haven’t dumped the thing . It seems it is  forgiving of all sins  if you just let go of the  mainsheet and sit  in the cockpit 

i have done a couple 360 turns after missing the tiller while attempting a planing gybe. 

It  isn’t a boat problem. It is a big old fat guy trying to get across a boat while holding a mainsheet, attempting to switch tiller hands, and stepping on the mainsheet tail so the mainsheet hand is suddenly restricted 

wheeeeeeeeeeeee!!

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1 hour ago, Gouvernail said:

Threatening.... i like that choice of terms 

I still haven’t dumped the thing . It seems it is  forgiving of all sins  if you just let go of the  mainsheet and sit  in the cockpit 

i have done a couple 360 turns after missing the tiller while attempting a planing gybe. 

It  isn’t a boat problem. It is a big old fat guy trying to get across a boat while holding a mainsheet, attempting to switch tiller hands, and stepping on the mainsheet tail so the mainsheet hand is suddenly restricted 

wheeeeeeeeeeeee!!

Hey Gouv.  Nice to hear you found a boat and fleet that brings you joy.  Best of luck with it and hope you keep sharing your thoughts about its sailing characteristics versus the Laser.

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Gouv, you know me, the world champ of caps, didn't dump one either until went out in 30, it went over so fast on a reach, spit me out to windward and spun around so fast, whole thing lasted 6 seconds, back in boat and off!

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I agree that the boat is rather forgiving. Never having sailed one, I was allowed to take one out at Wildwinds (Vasiliki, Greece) in winds gusting to 15 (at least). It must have been  a horrible sight seeing me mismanage the boat. Lost control once, but never capsized. The reaches were wonderful, but wet!

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I have lost count but I have sailed the boat almost every day but Wednesday and missed only a couple evenings. 

Maybe the number of two to three hour rides is ten

i finally found some lightweight sneakers with soles that Grip well. Those help a lot. Sailing barefoot didn’t work as I was constantly concerned about ripping skin off my feet. In fact I did do a number on the side of one foot. 

I wore knee pads one time they bothered me . I don’t slide my knees around and generally prefer to be on my feet or sitting . ....  except when one knee down feels right. 

It took a while to get comfortable with S curving down waves and I need to go to the coast and work on that in real waves. I suspect the fastest trip downwind is the lowest you can sail without falling off plane. It certainly leaps forward when it decides to plane  and I am certain a lot of  distance can be gained by getting a little extra planing to occur. 

It wont be long until sailing alone starts having diminishing returns. I really need to get next to somebody so we can try things and see what works. 

Last: jumping on the Laser for the Wednesday night races has been interesting.

***It is a lousy analogy but it feels a lot like steering a J-24 after steering a J-22. Each is a wonderful responsive sailing toy. I have sailed hundreds of races steering a J-24 but only a few dozen J-22 races. The bigger heavier boat is the one where, because of my years of experience,  I am totally at home but I like driving the lightweight one better. ****

summary: Just as not all J-24 sailors would jump to  the J-22 and just as the J-24 game is more established ,

the other part of the comparison is, lots of Laser sailors would simply love Sailing an AERO and with six billion people on the planet, there can be huge fleets of each boat. 

 

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The RS Aero 2019 Events Calendar is now posted.

Looks like close to 30 Events around the US.

https://www.rsaerosailing.org/index.asp?p=events&rg=North America

 

2019 NAs June 28-30 in the Gorge with Clinic led by Steve Cockerill  (Rooster Sailing)

2020 Aero WORLDS Aug 1-7 2020 in Gorge (60-80 Charter Boats Available), aiming for 110 Entries.

 

Lots of Aero races happening in California, with a demo tour planned again to get to 12-18 Aeros at the bigger events.

 

--

Someone want to make an Aero 2019 thread to keep up?
Lots happening, going to be a big year.

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On ‎6‎/‎16‎/‎2018 at 11:27 AM, Wavedancer II said:

I agree that the boat is rather forgiving. Never having sailed one, I was allowed to take one out at Wildwinds (Vasiliki, Greece) in winds gusting to 15 (at least). It must have been  a horrible sight seeing me mismanage the boat. Lost control once, but never capsized. The reaches were wonderful, but wet!

 

So how was Wildwinds???  I'm thinking about going next summer.

 

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On ‎1‎/‎21‎/‎2019 at 10:28 PM, _DB said:

 

So how was Wildwinds???  I'm thinking about going next summer.

 

I participated in one of the Laser training weeks with about ten others from all over Europe. The location is excellent and the Lasers were in great shape (new MkII sails etc). Staff was super helpful. I also liked the fact that restaurant prices were lower than in most of Europe. If you  want to know more, please PM me.

Wildwind also has a strong program for catamaran sailors. That program has training weeks as well.

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On 1/23/2019 at 12:30 PM, Wavedancer II said:

I participated in one of the Laser training weeks with about ten others from all over Europe. The location is excellent and the Lasers were in great shape (new MkII sails etc). Staff was super helpful. I also liked the fact that restaurant prices were lower than in most of Europe. If you  want to know more, please PM me.

Wildwind also has a strong program for catamaran sailors. That program has training weeks as well.

Good to hear such positive news about Wildwinds. According to their website they have 2 RS Aeros this season.

Minorca Sailing is also an excellent option for anyone wanting a dinghy sailing vacation in the Mediterranean. I see they will have 10 RS Aeros this year. Could be an excellent option for a small group of sailors looking for some RS Aero practice.

Anybody got any recent experience at Nonsuch Bay in Antigua? I hear they have a couple of Aeros too.

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AEROs have been invited to join in the 36th Easter Laser Regatta. Great courses!! Great food!! Great fun!  

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1 hour ago, Gouvernail said:

AEROs have been invited to join in the 36th Easter Laser Regatta. Great courses!! Great food!! Great fun!  

Great news. How many Aeros are you expecting? Will charter boats be available?

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Last fall, we discussed having an AERO fleet at Raster and I stressed my position “we need a dozen boats or it will hurt rather than help AERO development” 

The gang decided we could do better.

 

charter boats?? I do not know if KO sailing will bring charter boats. 

If YOU want a charter boat YOU should contact me ASAP and I will set you up with mine. I will be sailing my Laser as I have started every race since 1984 and failed to finish just one when I sheared of my rudder at the waterline. It was the one year (1998) when all I had to do was finish the last race to win the regatta but in 20+ wind I couldn’t make the boat go around the course with no rudder 

Use an email link  on my website 

 

 

 

.” 

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@tillerman  my website was down with a strange code until a few minutes ago. Godaddy just fixed it. 

Something about somebody trying to mess with it from an unauthorized computer , I failed to respond to the automated “was that you?” So it shut down until told it was safe .

actually ?? I think that is pretty cool.  

It sure beats getting hacked 

 

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33 minutes ago, LTFF said:

Dang what club can afford a brand new fleet of that size

It's Viridian Sailing Center near Dallas. It is a planned community with a lake and sailing center. My uncle has a place there . OK place to sail. You pay to use. They raceon  Sunday during the year. 

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I wonder how long that guy has been stuck

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13 hours ago, Crooked Beat said:

Can you tell me where you got those mast/sail storage tubes? 

 

Can get to fit many sizes of pvc pipe. Search for " conduit carrier" 

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WORLD SALING - EVALUATION PANEL REPORT
Selection of Equipment for 2024 Men’s and Women’s One Person Olympic Dinghy Event
The evaluation concluded that there are two suitable items of equipment for the event: The RS AERO equipment presented by RS Sailing and the Laser equipment presented by ILCA.
The Evaluation Panel developed a scoring matrix against which the equipment options were scored based on the evaluation criteria for the event.
The overall scores are:
RS AERO - 80%
LASER - 69%
MELGES 14 - 54%
DZERO - 52%
'RS Aero’s finished product exceeded all others in terms of quality and durability.'
FULL REPORT;

olympic aeros.jpg

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28 minutes ago, tillerman said:
WORLD SALING - EVALUATION PANEL REPORT
Selection of Equipment for 2024 Men’s and Women’s One Person Olympic Dinghy Event
The evaluation concluded that there are two suitable items of equipment for the event: The RS AERO equipment presented by RS Sailing and the Laser equipment presented by ILCA.
The Evaluation Panel developed a scoring matrix against which the equipment options were scored based on the evaluation criteria for the event.
The overall scores are:
RS AERO - 80%
LASER - 69%
MELGES 14 - 54%
DZERO - 52%
'RS Aero’s finished product exceeded all others in terms of quality and durability.'
FULL REPORT;

olympic aeros.jpg

Figured you would have it here.  Not sure if congrats or condolences are in order!?

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4 minutes ago, Wess said:

Figured you would have it here.  Not sure if congrats or condolences are in order!?

I think that RS Sailing is to be congratulated on creating a boat that scored so well in this evaluation. It's certainly the most thorough, analytic and detailed review of the RS Aero conducted so far. The report is full of many positive comments about the Aero and I am sure everyone involved with the class will be proud of that.

Sure, some of us are a bit wary of whether having the Aero selected for the Olympics will be a positive thing for the average sailor longer term, but let's cross that bridge when we come to it. World Sailing will come under a lot of political pressure to keep the Laser in the Olympics and they might still decide to go down that route.

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22 minutes ago, tillerman said:

I think that RS Sailing is to be congratulated on creating a boat that scored so well in this evaluation. It's certainly the most thorough, analytic and detailed review of the RS Aero conducted so far. The report is full of many positive comments about the Aero and I am sure everyone involved with the class will be proud of that.

Sure, some of us are a bit wary of whether having the Aero selected for the Olympics will be a positive thing for the average sailor longer term, but let's cross that bridge when we come to it. World Sailing will come under a lot of political pressure to keep the Laser in the Olympics and they might still decide to go down that route.

Who is this we of which you speak Kemosabe?  I am hanging on to my Laser till I die, LOL.

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1 hour ago, tillerman said:

I think that RS Sailing is to be congratulated on creating a boat that scored so well in this evaluation. It's certainly the most thorough, analytic and detailed review of the RS Aero conducted so far. The report is full of many positive comments about the Aero and I am sure everyone involved with the class will be proud of that.

Sure, some of us are a bit wary of whether having the Aero selected for the Olympics will be a positive thing for the average sailor longer term, but let's cross that bridge when we come to it. World Sailing will come under a lot of political pressure to keep the Laser in the Olympics and they might still decide to go down that route.

At least there is a great "model" of how NOT to manage an Olympic class that all can only hope that RS Sailing et. al. have carefully followed so as to not repeat that on-going disaster.

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MASSAPOAG YC SMALL BOAT REGATTA
Sharon, MA, Saturday June 1st

RS Aero sailors, please join us for the Small Boat Regatta at Massapoag YC in Sharon MA on Saturday June 1st. This is always a fun and friendly regatta which also includes starts for the Sunfish and ILCA Dinghy classes.

Links to registration, NOR and reports on this regatta in the last few years are at https://www.rsaerosailing.org/index.asp?p=event&eid=1657 

If you want to charter an RS Aero for this regatta please contact Marc Jacobi - email USA@rsaerosailing.org - to reserve your boat.

 

MYC SBR 19 boats.jpg

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Save these dates for RS Aero regattas in Florida this winter.

US Winter Series
December 6-8 Sanford Sailfest on Lake Monroe, one of the biggest mixed fleet regattas in Florida
February 1-2 Florida State Champs in Jensen Beach at the USSCMC 26 boats last year
February 8-9 Aero Mid-Winter Regatta in Cocoa, sailing out of Kelly State Park.
March 7-8 NEW EVENT Commodores Regatta Upper Keys Sailing Club, Key Largo
March 20-22 Sarasota Sailing Squadron One Design Midwinters, Sarasota
The US Winter Series scores the best 3 of the 5 events.
 
Other regattas likely to have an RS Aero presence...
October 19-20 Melbourne YC Fall Small Boat Regatta.
March 13-14 Coconut Grove
March 28-29 Mt Dora Annual Regatta.
April 25-26 Melbourne YC Spring Small Boat Regatta.

For the 2019/2020 edition of the US Winter Series the RS Sailing trailer of charter boats will no longer be available. Check with local dealers for demo or charter boats.

 
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I teach @ a large college sailing club which bought a fleet of RS Zests for the newbies, and we've had two (fairly truncated) seasons on the boats.  I do not know how they compare with Aeros, but the Zests have weaknesses in tiller/rudder construction, outhaul loop, and means of securing the rolled sail.  That, and they're pretty hard on the knees.  What say the folks who run this thread?

As to attaining Olympic status, I'd say RS should pray to be turned down.  I have watched the 470 become more expensive and less durable over the years, and move from large & active fleets in the early 70s to .... small and not-active fleets.  Topping that off, is the class decision to allow all kinetics when there's more than 8 kts of air, dumping Rule 42 altogether.  I fear Olympic sailing may be the death of sailing.

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9 hours ago, A CheeseHead said:

I teach @ a large college sailing club which bought a fleet of RS Zests for the newbies, and we've had two (fairly truncated) seasons on the boats.  I do not know how they compare with Aeros, but the Zests have weaknesses in tiller/rudder construction, outhaul loop, and means of securing the rolled sail.  That, and they're pretty hard on the knees.  What say the folks who run this thread?

As to attaining Olympic status, I'd say RS should pray to be turned down.  I have watched the 470 become more expensive and less durable over the years, and move from large & active fleets in the early 70s to .... small and not-active fleets.  Topping that off, is the class decision to allow all kinetics when there's more than 8 kts of air, dumping Rule 42 altogether.  I fear Olympic sailing may be the death of sailing.


I have no personal experience with RS Zests. As an RS Aero sailor for nearly 5 years now I can only say I am very impressed with the durability and reliability of the boat. I see that one of the first RS Aeros in North America (imported in 2015) is currently leading the RS Aero 5/7 fleet at the Midwinters in Florida.

Having said that, there were a small number of issues discovered by some owners of early Aeros, and RS Sailing were very responsive in tweaking the design of the boat to prevent the problems and offering fixes to current owners. e.g. a collar to prevent mast step wear. I hope your college sailing club is letting your RS Sailing dealer know of the issues you are experiencing with RS Zests.

The RS Aero Class rule that can change Rule 42 is actually an option for the SIs, and does not apply unless invoked by the SIs. I have only been to one regatta in which it was ever used (when we were sharing a course with Finns.) As far as I know it is used very rarely in RS Aero racing.

Here is the actual wording of the Rule.

  1. RRS 42.3 is changed by adding: “Where stipulated in the SI, if the average wind speed is clearly over 10 knots across the course the race committee may signal in accordance with RRS Appendix P5 that pumping, rocking and ooching are permitted, except (i) prior to the start, and (ii) when the boat is on a leg of the course designated in the SI as a windward leg.” this changes RRS 42.2(a), RRS 42.2(b), RRS 42.2(c).

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Using a dinghy for personal use and using a dinghy for a college sailing school are two very different use cases. Different boats are going to be best for the different use cases. Same could be said for Olympic and non-Olympic boats.

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Like Tiller, I've had my Aero for almost 5 years now, it was one of the first into Australia.  I did have a couple of the gudgeon screws start to back out a couple of years into ownership but they haven't come loose after tightening.  I did also manage to somehow bend the gooseneck pin (cast stainless looking thing) and had that replaced.

I do a lot of mileage towing my boat on the highway between regatta's and the bow where it sits on the blue poly block also went soft and started to delaminate where it sits on the block.  That was probably partly my fault for strapping it down too hard with it slightly too far forward on the dolly along with having the trailer sprung too stiffly for the garbage roads it gets towed on :)
The dolly V-block isn't shaped to the blow, it's just a generic item and not all that soft.  I do have plans to mold a replacement that will bolt in place of the v-block to support the bow up under the gunwale.

There have been some isolated reports of people snapping the tiller off the rudder headstock where it goes cast alloy to carbon tube, mostly due to people landing on top of the tiller and leveraging it down, then the cast alloy spigot the carbon tube goes over snapped.  That has been revised also and RS looked after the folks it happened to

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On 2/9/2020 at 4:08 AM, A CheeseHead said:

I teach @ a large college sailing club which bought a fleet of RS Zests for the newbies, and we've had two (fairly truncated) seasons on the boats.  I do not know how they compare with Aeros.......As to attaining Olympic status, I'd say RS should pray to be turned down. 

The Aero is a lightweight dinghy that needs a certain level of tender loving care and is entirely unsuitable to be a college boat. I've had zero issues with mine and I fail to see why your experiences with the Zest would be relevant.

As for Olympic status, the Aero was turned down many months ago. So on that point you can rest easy.

 

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On 2/8/2020 at 11:08 PM, A CheeseHead said:

  I fear Olympic sailing may be the death of sailing.

Olympic sailing may be a challenge to the continued widespread popularity of the classes who become Olympic classes. Thankfully there are many more classes who are not Olympic classes which continue to thrive without Olympic status (including the RS Aero.)

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1 hour ago, dogwatch said:

The Aero is a lightweight dinghy that needs a certain level of tender loving care and is entirely unsuitable to be a college boat. I've had zero issues with mine and I fail to see why your experiences with the Zest would be relevant.

How about (1) same manufacturer and (2) notably cheaper price point?

1 hour ago, dogwatch said:

As for Olympic status, the Aero was turned down many months ago. So on that point you can rest easy.

 

True, it was.  Nevertheless, the issue of what's to be the little boat for future Olympics remains an open issue.  My view?  The way the sailing Olympics are going ('medal' races, drop Rule 42, drop the boat for large athletes, adopt an offshore event) can only mean the eventual death of sailing Olympics.  Back when I was racing a 470, (yes, in the 70s) we used to say that the Worlds were a better, more competitive regatta, and we got one every year.  That's even more true today.  Admittedly, less prestige ... but that may well be changing.

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5 minutes ago, A CheeseHead said:

How about (1) same manufacturer and (2) notably cheaper price point?

 

The Zest is a sailing centre boat designed for beginners. Sailing centre means designed down to a price, that's how sailing centres work. The Aero is for adult sailors who own their own boat. It isn't a beginner's boat, if you bash it you will ding it. They aren't built for the same market.

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37 minutes ago, dogwatch said:

The Zest is a sailing centre boat designed for beginners. Sailing centre means designed down to a price, that's how sailing centres work. The Aero is for adult sailors who own their own boat. It isn't a beginner's boat, if you bash it you will ding it. They aren't built for the same market.

I once heard the RS Aero described as being for sailors who have got beyond the stage of sailing their boat into docks at full speed. I think that's fair. It's not indestructible but it is a well designed boat that is surprisingly tough for such a lightweight boat.

However I would take issue with one point in @dogwatch's post. The RS Aero is not only for adult sailors. From what I read, the RS Aero is very popular with youth in the UK with an active youth training scheme. It's not for total beginners who are still in the "OMG I lost control and rammed the dock at full speed" phase. But for competent youth sailors ready to race, the RS Aero 5 (and 7 for older/heavier youth sailors) can be excellent choices.


 

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I can't say I'm aware of many youth sailing Aeros. Maybe at other clubs but not at mine. I think the Aero is definitely easier to ding than, say, a Laser, I know some very experienced helms who have managed to do it.  It's a light boat, what do you expect? I'll take the lightness and accept I need to be careful or pay the price. The Aero would be OK as a youth boat if dad likes to demonstrate how to do the repairs. Shades of 29er dad syndrome  (which is much in evidence at my club).

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46 minutes ago, dogwatch said:

The Zest is a sailing centre boat designed for beginners. Sailing centre means designed down to a price, that's how sailing centres work. The Aero is for adult sailors who own their own boat. It isn't a beginner's boat, if you bash it you will ding it. They aren't built for the same market.

Got it.  Nevertheless, if the boat designed for beginners isn't particularly robust, one might reasonably suspect that the pricier boat would lack the same weaknesses.  The Zests have shown a propensity to losing their rudders, and the designs of the rudders appear to be pretty damned similar.

In a mild defense to my college's sailing program, we take pains to teach folks not to attack the pier at full speed ... and are reasonably successful at that.  To be fair, the reason we've bought the Zests is because the built-to-be-bulletproof MIT dinghies are costing too damned much.  Once the Harken brothers stopped building the club's boats, prices have climbed startlingly.

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Comparing the RS Aero and the RS 100 would be an interesting case study.  One is a roaring success, the other less so.  One focussed on lightness, simplicity and inclusivity.  The other on speed, tech and adrenaline.  One had a champion incentivised to promote it, the other was a pioneer of development via social media.  There's a lesson for ILCA somewhere there.

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12 minutes ago, dogwatch said:

I can't say I'm aware of many youth sailing Aeros. Maybe at other clubs but not at mine. I think the Aero is definitely easier to ding than, say, a Laser, I know some very experienced helms who have managed to do it.  It's a light boat, what do you expect? I'll take the lightness and accept I need to be careful or pay the price. The Aero would be OK as a youth boat if dad likes to demonstrate how to do the repairs. Shades of 29er dad syndrome  (which is much in evidence at my club).

 I'm aware of sailors that have moved off the Laser Junior/Youth Pathway to the Aero-  if they are not at the front of the 4.7/Radial fleet they will soon be aware that closing the gap is going to be very, very hard. I understand the Aero offers class-supported training and less intense events, so appeals to those that want to develop their sailing but not commit their whole lives to success.

https://www.rsaerosailing.org/index.asp?p=news&nid=10821

Cheers,

               W.

 

Edited by WGWarburton
Forgot to paste in link to youth news item.
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40 minutes ago, sosoomii said:

Comparing the RS Aero and the RS 100 would be an interesting case study.  One is a roaring success, the other less so.  One focussed on lightness, simplicity and inclusivity.  The other on speed, tech and adrenaline.  One had a champion incentivised to promote it, the other was a pioneer of development via social media.  There's a lesson for ILCA somewhere there.

I test sailed an RS100 a couple of years before I got the Aero. It didn't take very many minutes to figure out the RS100 was much too much boat for me. There were a few at my club but they seem to have faded away.

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2 minutes ago, dogwatch said:

I test sailed an RS100 a couple of years before I got the Aero. It didn't take very many minutes to figure out the RS100 was much too much boat for me. There were a few at my club but they seem to have faded away.

This seems to be a pattern- UK dinghy parks are often littered with demanding boats that owners are struggling to invest sufficient time in.

 It's one of the main reasons people keep coming back to Lasers. You can sail a Laser badly (you won't win anything but you can have some fun doing it) but the more exciting a boat is the more commitment it takes to enjoy it... there's a constant flow of new, exciting boats- IC, moth, contender, RS-100, RS-600, waszp(?), Musto Skiff... even less extreme examples come & go. Some never catch on, some get their 15-minutes. Few build an enduring base where there are enough people with enough time & enough money to keep the class at the critical mass necessary to sustain an ongoing fleet.

Cheers,

              W.

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2 hours ago, WGWarburton said:

... there's a constant flow of new, exciting boats- IC, ...

Cheers,

              W.

The IC has been a new, exciting boat since 1880. I haven't foiled, but I don't think many boats that stay predominantly on the water feel as cool to sail as an IC. Pure opinion... 

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11 hours ago, sosoomii said:

Comparing the RS Aero and the RS 100 would be an interesting case study.  One is a roaring success, the other less so.  One focussed on lightness, simplicity and inclusivity.  The other on speed, tech and adrenaline.  One had a champion incentivised to promote it, the other was a pioneer of development via social media.  There's a lesson for ILCA somewhere there.

RS100 and RS Aero seem to about level peg in Australia judging by numbers at title races (can't comment on number sold). Average age of RS100 sailors in not young (I would guess 50's). But then we have a stronger skiff background.

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The Aero 5 seems to be very popular with teenage girls at our club and very good they are too. Often beating good adult sailors and last year one of them was the top placed in the Bloody Mary from our club (something like 22nd, but could be wrong on that). Another of our club girls was at the Aero worlds in Australia. 

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The RS100 looked a very nice boat, and sailed very well. Comfortable and well laid out. It was so rapid downwind.  

The difficulty is, the faster you go off wind, the more time you spend hiking it back upwind. The racing then becomes less about downwind sailing and speed, and more about hiking it back upwind. 

Also, the more powered up you are for those reaching downwind legs, the more difficult it is to carry sail area and speed on tighter angles. And so the boat becomes less adept at 'round the cans' racing. 

Regarding rudder stocks, I would be surprised (although kind of not) if RS haven't recalled the Aero rudder gudgeons. They fitted the same screw on gudgeon to the RS200 which were ripping out of transoms and a product notice was emailed out just before Christmas.

The gudgeons had been pulling out of 200s for a few years, and I'd seen similar reports with Aeros online. So I was a little surprised that when I went to pick up my new 200 last March that the gudgeon still came screwed on. I asked them to replace with bolts and washers before I took it away. I mean, if RS had even one half credible report of a rudder pulling off, why not just fit bolts and washers to all new boats as a precaution? It's hardly a massive expense on $10k+ boats!

RS make some fantastic boats, but they can be a little 'head in the sand' when it comes to quality. They see any report of a product failing as an attack on the brand, whereas mostly their customers are just trying to help them make the best products!  The way they handle faulty products is a little lacking too. Sending emails out to addresses years old is never going to reach all the affected sailors. It's just damage limitation and keeping things out of the press as much as possible. But what they fail to realise is that although no one wants to hear of faulty parts, leaving dodgy parts out on the market is far more damaging to the brand. A well publicised, timely and professional recall is the best way to maintain your reputation (see how quick Southern Spars and 49ers Class were with their spreader recall, via public notice).

These plastic gudgeons do wear a little quick as well. Already got a bit of play in mine after a season on the 200. One broke on a new RS800 at the nationals, although we broke an older design alloy one on the 800 at the euros. 

I would recommend any RS owner follow this guide if they have screw on gudgeons. RS guide to screw replacement (link sent in RS200 product notice).

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Mozzy,
Well that was a thread swerve onto gudgeons...

Sorry to hear of your experience in the 200 & 800, however, you are speculating without experience regarding the RS Aero.
The account you refer to is 2.5 years old, half of the age of the Class!  The Class is quick to give constructive feedback to RS when necessary and in my experience they are quick to investigate and respond. I understand RS added some extra structure there early on. I heard of a few stories of lose screws, but not for a long time now and there are already over 2,200 RS Aeros out there.
I have no experience of the plastic gudgeons either breaking or wearing. If they did wear the expense to replace is not prohibitive. I love my blue button.
I don't think your recommendation to replace screws is necessary and it also presumes an access hatch is available, which there is not.
However, if anyone wanted to use their RS Aero for foiling then bolts are recommended and we amended the Class rules a few years ago to enable butterfly bolts to be used.

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@Peter Barton it was a reply to @A CheeseHead #1544; they were talking about the zest having the same stock and having issues, so I thought it was relevant to talk about the 200 and the solution there, as it's quite simple... but alas you have no hatch on the Aero, so not so simple, but if it's not a problem, they hey ho. 

Yeah, no experience of the Aero, but certainly experience of the same rudder and same fitting. 

Maybe the lay up that your rudders are tapped into is stronger? Either way, attaching with self tapers takes a little more care as you have to drill the pilot hole the correct width and be very careful not to over tighten or allow them to come loose. When you replace you'll want to be careful to get the screw in to the same threads and tighten just the right amount again. A self taper isn't really designed to be replaced too many times.

All gudgeons wear. Personally, I hate the feeling of a sloppy rudder and will happily spend £20 a year to get them nice. But if replacing them increases the chance of screws pulling out, then it becomes an issue. A sacrificial nylon/plastic insert would be a nice feature, so slop can be removed without having to disturb self tapers which are happy where they are... I'm glad my 200 has an access hatch and bolts. 

One of the plastic ones broke on an 800 at the nationals (the actual plastic part snapped). But then didn't your alloy one break before the last race too? Our alloy one broke in Garda. So, it's not like the old alloy pintals are amazing. They tend to crack next to the bolts where the alloy is at it's thinnest, possibly helped by a bit of corrosion between steel bolt and alloy gudegeon.  But both our pintals were a few years old whereas the plastic one was new. This is all on 800s though, and I'm sure the loads are a bit different to the Aero! But it's an example of the extreme. 

The actual rudders themselves do allow the full kick up which is nice. The blue button is okay, but is it really better than a clip? I'm also not too sure about the join between carbon and alloy. On the other hand the old rudders got loads of corrosion in all the pop rivets between stock and tiller... so for me the jury is out on whether the new style RS rudder are much of an improvement. 

The carbon tiller looks nice though, so there is that. 

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The Zest is a plastic boat for kids to learn to sail - but if you wish to compare it to an Aero - ok....

The Zest was one of the most popular club boats launched in my memory (our company has been selling dinghies for 15 years now).
RS replaced a dozen or so rudder units for clubs that got Zests due to an issue in manufacturing that caused a weak spot and some failures in the field.

Not ideal, but,  issue identified and issue fixed at no cost to customers.
Just like the handful of original Aeros that had transom issues (I think it was 3 total out of 2000+ so far).

 

Anyway, 2019 saw 400+ new Aeros sold into the market. 
Pretty damn impressive for a new singlehander if you ask anyone.

It’s happening.
It’s really happening. 

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1 hour ago, WestCoast said:

Anyway, 2019 saw 400+ new Aeros sold into the market. 
Pretty damn impressive for a new singlehander if you ask anyone.

It’s happening.
It’s really happening. 

It sure is.
And 2020 will see the RS Aero Worlds come to North America - at the Columbia Gorge.

https://www.sail-world.com/news/226088/4th-RS-Aero-World-Championships-preview

yysw279283.jpg

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