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couchsurfer

...IC kit...'machete'...'

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...sometimes there's interesting stuff on the FP..... I'd be interested to hear about time to build,,,and costs involved. IC's have always been very hands-on for owners. As much as it's much like 'Chris mas' when one see's the carbon creations it's nice to see things go back to simpler times. ;) .........





Machete-846x1024.jpg


The 20 knot home build canoe from our friends at Wooden Boat magazine…


I started out looking at high performance sailing and feeling horrible about exhorting my friends to blow the cost of a new Subaru on a new IC. It just wasn’t right. There had to be a better way to grow the sport. So I went after the cost and built a tortured plywood IC in a jig with a host of CNC cut bulkheads inside and thought about making the final product more affordable that way. I named her Dance Commander and got fifth overall at world’s in her. I was in position to snag the bronze by the last race when my halyard blew up. The boat went like a bat out of hell and held up to 20+ knots in San Francisco bay for two weeks of total war without complaint. As I was driving back across the country, though, I realized that what I had really proven was the ongoing relevance of wood. With cheap okume and white pine, I’d built myself a weapon that could lead a fleet almost entirely dominated by carbon boats. It’s important to note at this point that I’m no genius builder. My dad is a great designer and I did an acceptable job of assembling the boat. So with the right design anybody could do what I did. “Awesome!” I thought “Let’s make it happen”.


When I got back East, my dad went back to the drawing board and I got back to peering over his shoulder urging “Pointier! Scarier! Meaner! Sharper!” There were two criteria: fast to sail, easy of build. I was very wary in protecting ease of build. It’s common for a career boatbuilder to begin sentences with “It’s not that hard to….” and that’s a dangerous path to tread in kit building. What came out the other end is Machete, the most aggressive looking canoe I’ve ever sailed and by far the easiest build. I constructed the hull in a shed in Ithaca over the winter, using nothing but hand tools. It went together like cookies and milk. It’s a miracle of CNC cutting and good designers how these complex shapes break down into a set of tinker toys for grown-ups. I really have to thank my dad for designing such a beautiful and intricate craft. It was an indescribable pleasure bringing it from a box of cut-outs to a three dimensional real hull.


Part of the Machete kit concept is the notion that the truly rewarding part of building a boat is building the hull. The hull is the true “boat” part of the boat. It’s the part you name, paint, fare, talk to. The other stuff just gets in the way of getting on the water and sailing the wonderful boat you’ve just built. With that in mind, all the other parts can come prefab, enabling you to stick to the good part and not be driven up the wall making foils while your beautiful hull sits in your shop looking on expectantly. So, I came back to Rhode Island with my finished hull and took the foils, seat carriage and seat etc, for which we have good reliable tooling, out of stock and rigged her up. Great. Hull done. Time to sail.


Machete weighed in finished at 50kg all up, the minimum weight for the class. We’ve been doing sea trials in the last week and the thing goes like a missile. She will go up against a good group of other IC’s in Oriental, NC this coming weekend and I’m certain that she will do nicely. In many ways its feels like a vindication of a hunch my dad and I have had for years; that you can get to the front of a high performance development class with wood and clever geometry as opposed to the wholesale application of exotics. For me, the machete project has been one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done, and I am preparing kits with the hope that other people can have that experience too.”


Read the full article here and title inspiration thanks to Peter Murphy.


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......that picture above raises another interesting thought.......the very rural setting. I wonder how many people accomplish home-builds in very urban settings as compared to out on the farm?

 

Sure the price and availability of space comes into play,,but also the 'busyness' of life is probably a factor. I know things changed a lot for me when my workshop became a 45min drive away,rather than walking to the back yard. :mellow:

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Being the guy who built it, I can answer these questions.

Time to build. Screwing about and dithering more than a little, I had the hull decked over in 20 days. I then took some time to mould the parts that come prefab with the boat (tracks, track landers, sexy carbon pintal mounts etc) and had it done a while after that. I'd put the build time for the hull at about 40 days at a weekend warrior pace.

Cost. The bare hull kit is 2000 US dollars. That includes tracks and track landers (all carbon) which are structurally essential to the hull. The all inclusive kit with IM7 carbon spars, seat kit, seat carriage and foils is 5000 US dollars. Frankly, I think that's pretty fair. If I'd had to buy the kit to do what I did over again, I'd do it in a heartbeat. It's a great pleasure to be able to go rip around in a boat you fully built yourself.

Setting. I built the hull in an 800 square foot storage space/shed in Ithaca, NY. That was waaaay more space than I needed. When I asked my dad to design the kit, I was pretty adamant about it needing to be simple enough to build in a dorm room (providing your roommate is cool). As is, the hull is so thin and light, you just pick it up and walk it out the door like a suitcase when you are done. That's not a garage door, folks, that's a standard twenty-some-odd inch door. I used hand tools to build it. I got really pissed at the idea that instruction 1 of a kit could be "switch on your state of the art workshop". While I had a table saw, a band saw and a drill press and a vacuum pump, they wound up going unused. You build it with a bag of tools and a caulk gun full of west system 610. As I said in the article, I'm no genius builder. I bet you can do it more nicely than I did. That's kinda the point of a kit.

I do this kind of stuff because people are smarter and more capable than businesses give them credit for and because the fact that the moth costs the price of a friggin Impreza disgusts me. There aren't enough rich people in the world to sustain the sport on an all-carbon diet. People deserve better. People deserve to be enabled to build things themselves and be something other than consumers. Break the envelope.

David Rittenhouse Clark
Owner Operator- Fulcrum Speedworks
fulcrumspeedworks.com
https://www.facebook.com/fulcrumspeedworks

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All I can say is I dig it. It's not in the cards for me now, but hopefully some day it will be.

I think you have a very good price point. The boat looks great.

 

Nice Job !

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Nicely done, sir. I hope that you sell loads. I just fear that the potential may be limited on account of people being time poor / pussywhipped / or otherwise "busy making plans" as John Lennon might say.

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Gotta say, $5K for the kit, including mast, is damn reasonable. Congrats on making something that actually makes sense.

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.

 

 

...very nicely done mr Clark...that $5G tag for most all but sails will be quite a draw. The fact that it's a small project is also a boost as those 'time poor,,pussywhipped' sorts who will be able to sling it up on the garage roof between sessions,,unlike i550's.

 

...A word of warning to dorm room builders,though....better think of the size of the elevator or might wish you had built an ultra-light flyer instead :mellow:

 

 

 

....y'all missed my dig at C.M? :rolleyes:

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Being the guy who built it, I can answer these questions.

 

Time to build. Screwing about and dithering more than a little, I had the hull decked over in 20 days. I then took some time to mould the parts that come prefab with the boat (tracks, track landers, sexy carbon pintal mounts etc) and had it done a while after that. I'd put the build time for the hull at about 40 days at a weekend warrior pace.

 

Cost. The bare hull kit is 2000 US dollars. That includes tracks and track landers (all carbon) which are structurally essential to the hull. The all inclusive kit with IM7 carbon spars, seat kit, seat carriage and foils is 5000 US dollars. Frankly, I think that's pretty fair. If I'd had to buy the kit to do what I did over again, I'd do it in a heartbeat. It's a great pleasure to be able to go rip around in a boat you fully built yourself.

 

Setting. I built the hull in an 800 square foot storage space/shed in Ithaca, NY. That was waaaay more space than I needed. When I asked my dad to design the kit, I was pretty adamant about it needing to be simple enough to build in a dorm room (providing your roommate is cool). As is, the hull is so thin and light, you just pick it up and walk it out the door like a suitcase when you are done. That's not a garage door, folks, that's a standard twenty-some-odd inch door. I used hand tools to build it. I got really pissed at the idea that instruction 1 of a kit could be "switch on your state of the art workshop". While I had a table saw, a band saw and a drill press and a vacuum pump, they wound up going unused. You build it with a bag of tools and a caulk gun full of west system 610. As I said in the article, I'm no genius builder. I bet you can do it more nicely than I did. That's kinda the point of a kit.

 

I do this kind of stuff because people are smarter and more capable than businesses give them credit for and because the fact that the moth costs the price of a friggin Impreza disgusts me. There aren't enough rich people in the world to sustain the sport on an all-carbon diet. People deserve better. People deserve to be enabled to build things themselves and be something other than consumers. Break the envelope.

 

David Rittenhouse Clark

Owner Operator- Fulcrum Speedworks

fulcrumspeedworks.com

https://www.facebook.com/fulcrumspeedworks

 

We are not worthy, well I'm certainly not!

 

Bravo good sir.

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I do this kind of stuff because people are smarter and more capable than businesses give them credit for and because the fact that the moth costs the price of a friggin Impreza disgusts me. There aren't enough rich people in the world to sustain the sport on an all-carbon diet. People deserve better. People deserve to be enabled to build things themselves and be something other than consumers. Break the envelope.

 

David Rittenhouse Clark

Owner Operator- Fulcrum Speedworks

fulcrumspeedworks.com

https://www.facebook.com/fulcrumspeedworks

Well said young fella...

Could you and the old man get together on something like the Zim15 but with some big forwards? I reckon a few people would part with about $7K for a kit version of one of those.

 

TBH the Canoe kit is under-priced but I see what you're about.

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Thanks, everybody. It means a lot. Regarding the zim15 knockoff idea, no thanks. The last thing anybody needs is yet another new one design class. Buy-in is torture for the first people to do so, you have to build a culture and everything from scratch etc etc. And then all you've done is help the manufacturer. No passion there. Giving a hand to an existing development class is preferable. I'd love to hear suggestions for a two up class that already exists, goes like stink and could be competitively kitted. My first choice would have been the i14 but I expect the rig is just too expensive to really save anyone anything. And then all the international skiff classes seem to be SMODS. Bummer.

 

Something rather cool came my way regarding that. A really interesting fellow from puerto rico sent me a message asking if we could lend him a hand kitting out the Chalana (look em up,they're awesome). Its a local skiff class in puerto rico. This type is 24ft long, crew ranging from four to eight depending on wind (epic), made of plywood and powered by a used melges24 rig. Brilliant. Melges campaigns hemmorage sails. Free sails! Plus, I always though the melges could do with about eight guys on wires rather than hanging on the life lines hating life. Look up the chalana on youtube. Brilliant stuff. Its like the aussie skiff scene circa 1970 but with better rigs and more guys on the wire. Fun had by all and at ludicrously low cost. Now is there a two up development class out there down stream of some one design class that throws away three jibs per regatta? I haven't found it yet but I'm looking. Till then, my plan is to stick to the canoe and not get spread too thin. Plus i just believe the canoe is that good. Seriously, try one. You might not want a kit doublehander afterwards. You might just want a canoe.

 

Regarding kits in progress, given that I only just finished the inagural boat myself that was necessary for wtiting the manual, not yet. A few are going out relatively soon. Kit #1 is going to germany. I'm taking orders, though. Jump on in. I need to pay rent.

 

DRC

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how much would a decent set of sails cost?

brand new- 1500

used but good- usually 500

Practically all of us buy on a three year cycle, going for new rags just before each world championship. We don't reaLly hold with the sails-as-gas concept. Its just silly.

 

DRC

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Giving a hand to an existing development class is preferable. I'd love to hear suggestions for a two up class that already exists, goes like stink and could be competitively kitted. My first choice would have been the i14 but I expect the rig is just too expensive to really save anyone anything. And then all the international skiff classes seem to be SMODS. Bummer.

 

 

Thinking round the usual club racing suspects in the UK, the Cherrub? The rules are pretty much designed to make stich and glue plywood the default, although DIY foam/epoxy seems to have taken over.

 

The problem is, most classes allowed glass fiber/epoxy a long time ago, which was fine as usualy a well put together plywood boat was faster. Then foam cores came allong and all of a sudden you could build a dinghy down to plywood weights, that didn't need any maintenance, was stiffer and didn't put on weight! The handicaps then tumbled and wooden boats were dropped entirely as they could neither compete as one designs or on handicap. Phantoms I'm looking at you! The exception would be the Wayfarer (not really a racing boat, but bear with me). The rights are oned by one builder, and they're knocking out minmimum weight foam/epoxy boats, BUT they're no faster than the old wooden ones. And they're not selling any plans/kits for wooden boats. Which means there's an odd disconect in the pricing, if you want to win, you have to go back and buy a 60's wooden boat and consequently they're all ££££ where later plastic ones end up on bonfires!

 

There's a class in Oz/Nz called the Javelin, which is a single trapeze 14ft skiff. Started by the same guy as the Cherub but looks a whole lot less odd being 2ft longer.

 

I'd quite like to have a crack at building a Zero/Aero type boat. Could be quite fun to startup a class with a one design mast, sail, boom, foils and rudder stock from a zero to keep development costs down. Then allow free reighn of hull design within say 13ft, and 45kg. Would make for an easy starting point for the fleet too, as the donor boat would by default be eligable.

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Thanks, everybody. It means a lot. Regarding the zim15 knockoff idea, no thanks. The last thing anybody needs is yet another new one design class. Buy-in is torture for the first people to do so, you have to build a culture and everything from scratch etc etc. And then all you've done is help the manufacturer. No passion there. Giving a hand to an existing development class is preferable. I'd love to hear suggestions for a two up class that already exists, goes like stink and could be competitively kitted. My first choice would have been the i14 but I expect the rig is just too expensive to really save anyone anything. And then all the international skiff classes seem to be SMODS. Bummer.

 

DRC

I was just taking the piss... I went on a bit of a rant at your dad about the Zim not having a kite but I'm back on my meds now so it's alright.

 

It would smoke with a kite tho.

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Thinking round the usual club racing suspects in the UK, the Cherub? The rules are pretty much designed to make stich and glue plywood the default, although DIY foam/epoxy seems to have taken over.

 

Err no. The original rules were framed to reduce 3d curvature to encourage plywood, but stitch and glue was never much good. Multiple small stringers was always the way to go - much like Machete really. But the UK rules ditched the limits on 3d curvature decades ago because it was just too much hassle to measure and enforce. But the boats are so light and so heavily loaded that it was always a real challenge to get down to the weight in wood, and although the modern boats are much smaller there's so much carbonmongery to attach in the form of racks, gantries and the like that there would probably be little benefit.

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Thanks, everybody. It means a lot. Regarding the zim15 knockoff idea, no thanks. The last thing anybody needs is yet another new one design class. Buy-in is torture for the first people to do so, you have to build a culture and everything from scratch etc etc. And then all you've done is help the manufacturer. No passion there. Giving a hand to an existing development class is preferable. I'd love to hear suggestions for a two up class that already exists, goes like stink and could be competitively kitted. My first choice would have been the i14 but I expect the rig is just too expensive to really save anyone anything. And then all the international skiff classes seem to be SMODS. Bummer.

 

Something rather cool came my way regarding that. A really interesting fellow from puerto rico sent me a message asking if we could lend him a hand kitting out the Chalana (look em up,they're awesome). Its a local skiff class in puerto rico. This type is 24ft long, crew ranging from four to eight depending on wind (epic), made of plywood and powered by a used melges24 rig. Brilliant. Melges campaigns hemmorage sails. Free sails! Plus, I always though the melges could do with about eight guys on wires rather than hanging on the life lines hating life. Look up the chalana on youtube. Brilliant stuff. Its like the aussie skiff scene circa 1970 but with better rigs and more guys on the wire. Fun had by all and at ludicrously low cost. Now is there a two up development class out there down stream of some one design class that throws away three jibs per regatta? I haven't found it yet but I'm looking. Till then, my plan is to stick to the canoe and not get spread too thin. Plus i just believe the canoe is that good. Seriously, try one. You might not want a kit doublehander afterwards. You might just want a canoe.

 

Regarding kits in progress, given that I only just finished the inagural boat myself that was necessary for wtiting the manual, not yet. A few are going out relatively soon. Kit #1 is going to germany. I'm taking orders, though. Jump on in. I need to pay rent.

 

DRC

Dave, I'd imagine you've seen this. Steve Shumaker has already built one and well on his way through a 2nd designed wood I-14. Beautiful boats and sail well. There are used rigs and sails that he has applied with good success.

 

http://forum.international14.org/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1750

 

Great work and best of luck with the IC Kits.

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What would it take to make this kit an AC? Other than a little more money.

 

a completely different hull shape... The AC uses the Nethercott hull shape. The new thin light boats aren't well suited for kites. If Dave will excuse me saying so, the Machete is more of a stiletto to the Nethercotts's machete...

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What would it take to make this kit an AC? Other than a little more money.

A new rules IC canoe blows the pants off of an AC. Can't imagine wanting or needing a spinnaker

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Don't even start down that road, argument,I don't want to hear it. It will be very interesting to see a new rules at a light air regatta with an AC, think it might be a very different story. But I think DRC is right, in that it doesn't need a kite.

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What would it take to make this kit an AC? Other than a little more money.

Totally reengineering it and basically turning it into a swift solo. As said above, the AC is built off the old one-design. Bob Ames and Bill Beaver at one point designed a double chined kit canoe that measured in, but it turned out to be a dog. If you're talking about a little shits&giggles kite, there's a costly tradeoff. The kite apparatus requires a good amount of weight increase (pole, tube, launcher, reinforcement etc). Building out of plywood and trying to do that too will make the boat overweight. As is, machete is on minimum weight and thus competitive. But it's got no abundance of weight to spare. So really, to have it both ways, you're looking at spending 20+ grand and having a carbon boat built for you out of a mold. If you want to fool around with a machete that you construct from a kit, go for it. It's your boat and as I said, I've got rent to pay. But modify at your own risk.

 

All told, we produced this boat as a high end high performance boat. I'm thankful to my dad for designing a beautiful boat and don't think she needs more sail crowded on. As I see it, spinnakers are old tech. Look at the C-class, the A-class, the Moth etc, the high end of sailing is finding speed in hull weight, drag reduction and foil development, rather than increased power. My best advice is see if it satisfies you as is, before adding sail. It certainly does for me, and I started sailing skiffs when I was nine and got my first ride on a C-class when I was 13 so I'd say I have pretty exotic needs as far as boat excitemnt goes.

 

DRC

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Im struggling to convince myself I don't want this, it really wouldn't work on our lake with 25deg wind shifts and 0-25knots all on a sailing area 1km square with islands to avoid!

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I sail an IC on a 900m * 650m reservoir, and while that's definitely the bottom end of the size range it is big enough not to be unpleasant. Sort out a nice flexi gust responsive rig to deal with the gusts and there could be worse things to sail. Too much tacking is something of a pain though because you can't really tack on every shift in a Canoe, you do have to be more strategic.

The nice thing about the kite free boat on a smaller pond is that you don't have the losses on the hoists and the drops.

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Don't even start down that road, argument,I don't want to hear it. It will be very interesting to see a new rules at a light air regatta with an AC, think it might be a very different story. But I think DRC is right, in that it doesn't need a kite.

You might not want to hear it, but it has been proven time and time again in both light and heavy air. The other thing that needs to be considered as an IC sailor is that sausage courses don't make a whole lot of sense because quite frankly they're not as much fun as blast reaching. At any IC event, you should have more reaches than runs, and even if you do have runs, you can sail deeper with a jib than you can with the Asail. The VMG of the Asail is rarely if ever better than a new rules boat pointing lower.

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Steady now, gents.

Im struggling to convince myself I don't want this,

You have always wanted one....

 

DRC

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In other news, Machete has a new, more menacing look. It's loosely based on the Japanese battle ensign. I'm tired of monochrome. I'm tired of white. I'm tired of black. Have fun with paint. Yet another reason to build your own boat.

DRC

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post-100627-0-10142200-1429653745_thumb.jpg

post-100627-0-13422200-1429653746_thumb.jpg

post-100627-0-11824200-1429653747_thumb.jpg

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I dig the Machete, and if I wasn't over-subscribed already, I would want a test ride on an IC to see if I wanted it as much as I think I do.. The Chalana certainly looks like a blast. Regarding 2 person trap boat, I'm assuming you've considered the Fireball.

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You have always wanted one....

True, I remember seeing a minisail on holliday as a kid once and thinking it was cool as f***. In reality it's the boat that eventualy lost it's sliding seat and became the Topper, but still................

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I dig the Machete, and if I wasn't over-subscribed already, I would want a test ride on an IC to see if I wanted it as much as I think I do.. The Chalana certainly looks like a blast. Regarding 2 person trap boat, I'm assuming you've considered the Fireball.

Yeah Fireball or Y-flyer. I reckon a woodie would be better than glass ones.

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The problem is that the bulk of the classes mentioned above are national classes. Half the point for the kit is that it can be shipped in a little crate IKEA-style. The more places it can go, the more fleets it can join, the more worthwhile it is to kit out. The fireball is huge internationally and believe me I've considered it but....well, I'm super biased against symmetrical kites. It's a dumb bias, I know. Still, a good kit off a CNC machine (hence tons more thin bulkheads) would be way lighter and stiffer than a boat kitted the oldschool way from plans and lofting, so its still worth considering.

 

Regarding the D-zero/Aero comment, there's a una rig trainer canoe that I had when I was eleven that might work quite well as a kit for the more sane members of the population. 7 or 8 square meter rig ~3 foot extension seat. It would roast the zaero on a spit and probably cost half as much but, again, one thing at a time. Starting a new class is, to my knowledge, reason #1 why dreamy eyed plywood kitbuilding types go out of business. As my dad says "there's only one thing harder to start than a one-design: a university". Unless severely peer-pressured, I'll stick with my machetes.

 

DRC

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Still thinking about how daft an idea this could be once I've cleared the current project* out of the workshop.

 

 

Half the point for the kit is that it can be shipped in a little crate IKEA-style.

 

How much of the kit is bespoke or single source and how much is off the shelf? Could the hull kit be made by a wood shop with CNC facilities localy in the UK/Europe assuming we could also buy mast's, foils etc localy (in the UK it'd be about 25% tax added to the kit and parts cost + shipping)? Or is it not much of a cost saving over shipping the bespoke or single source components? How much was the shipping to Europe?

 

*1975 MG Midget

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Still thinking about how daft an idea this could be once I've cleared the current project* out of the workshop.

 

 

 

Half the point for the kit is that it can be shipped in a little crate IKEA-style.

 

How much of the kit is bespoke or single source and how much is off the shelf? Could the hull kit be made by a wood shop with CNC facilities localy in the UK/Europe assuming we could also buy mast's, foils etc localy (in the UK it'd be about 25% tax added to the kit and parts cost + shipping)? Or is it not much of a cost saving over shipping the bespoke or single source components? How much was the shipping to Europe?

 

*1975 MG Midget

Basically, no. We aren't selling plans at the moment but you don't really save yourself time or money doing it all domestically anyway.

 

It was not easy to get a plywood kit down to weight. It took roughly ten years of development, starting with Wonk to get to Machete, so if you want the boat competitive, the full kit is your best chance. Attempts at one-off plywood new rules canoes, barring phil stephenson's Log, have come in heavy and often proved that hull design is harder than it looks. Essentially its a pretty bespoke kit.

 

Shipping cost depends on the box really. Here's the range of box options from biggest to smallest. For international shipping, it makes little sense to ship masts (super cumbersome), so those should be bought locally. For the UK, I suggest Aardvark Technologies masts. The kit sans-mast by the way is only four thousand dollars rather than five. So the basic international package is a crate, 8 feet by ~3 and a few inches tall. Pretty small, pretty cheap. It sets you back four hundred pounds. The basic hull kit (without foils, seat carriage, boom, seat kit/prefab seat) is even smaller, but then you need to buy the seat and carriage in the UK, which are a tad heavier, more expensive, and not properly compatible with our track system. The tracks and landers are 100 percent essential to the structure of the boat and are only tooled at fulcrum. No equivalents exist. So doing the whole thing off the shelf without any shipping is actually impossible. However, where's the savings of sourcing it all yourself, when you are getting all the wood, all the machining and the basic building blocks of the kit for 1385 british pounds? So the four hundred quid you lose is at least partially gained back in time saved getting everything sourced and cut. Now this is before you pull an iceboat ploy and get a friend to bring it over as checked baggage declaring it a "surfboard", or getting it put in a friendly fleet's rented container.

 

I think that still comes out to a pretty fair rate, given that it turns into a minimum weight international canoe at the other end. I also expect to get smarter at this with time.

 

DRC

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The 5k kit has everything but sales

 

"Cost. The bare hull kit is 2000 US dollars. That includes tracks and track landers (all carbon) which are structurally essential to the hull. The all inclusive kit with IM7 carbon spars, seat kit, seat carriage and foils is 5000 US dollars."

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Actually, Dex is correct. Rigging on the IC is deeply customized from user to user. I have advice for how a machete should be rigged, but string, wire and blocks are not included. Again, for the bulk of IC sailors, most of what I provide would be undone Since rigging systems are super diverse in the canoe world.

 

DRC

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I think that still comes out to a pretty fair rate, given that it turns into a minimum weight international canoe at the other end. I also expect to get smarter at this with time.

 

I wasn't knocking the pricing or trying to haggle it down, it's a bargain. Just wondered about the feasability of you selling a 'kit' for export that just included the bespoke components, a CNC file for the plywood parts and a shopping list to get the spars and foils from UK sources. Just an oppertuntity for you to potentialy improve your margins and cut out some of your work, a win win for you!

 

Depends if you're making the foils yourself, if you are then fair enough it's part of the kit and everyones entitled to make a living. But if you're buying them in, then it saves everyone money/hastle if they can get equivelent parts localy. Ditto the plywood, you could take your licence fee, e-mail any CNC shop in the UK the files and have it delivered directly to the customer, rather than shipping the bulky parts halfway round the world and incuring ~$1750 in shipping and taxes.

 

Although having shopped arround, it's pretty much the same to get foils (£1100/$1650), mast (£1500/$2250)and boom (£400/$600)for less than what you're charging plus shipping and tax, and that's before the cost of the seat.

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Just trust me on this. It's not very feasible. Plus the amount you save in taxes goes right back into the increased cost of buying parts outright on site. Unless you have tooling available for seats, carriages and foils, or a ready boat to cannibalize for parts, it's just best to go for the parts we make. Actually, the only piece that we buy is the mast and it's a vandusen. Vandusen spars have won the last two world championships, plus gold in the 2008 world's DC fleet. Ted vandusen makes them with a triaxial braider which is both brilliant for customizing the laminate and very inexpensive to run ($1200 a mast). They are light, beyond stiff and cost way less. If I can find a way to ship them cheaply, I'll send one with every kit going overseas, too. They are fast. We make foils, seats, carriages and my cousin's CNC shop does the cutting. So, again, every bit of work counts. I make foils for only $1000, so there's a savings there. Our carriges, which I build, are tooled in three parts, which is pretty seriously slick and costs less. Our booms are actually around $200. I have a lot of confidence in our process. It took nearly three years to orient it towards the fulcrum concept and lot of obstacles were overcome. It works best doing it this way.

 

Regarding selling computer files. I took too many law courses in college to like the conventional way intellectual property is protected. It seems far more pleasant to keep things orderly by simply only selling analog (wooden) copies of the computer file. A few years back, my dad decided to be very nice and hand out all the information on how to make functioning wings for free to the entire world. It worked, but the fat cats at oracle haven't given him so much as a thank you. Later, southern spars forced him out of a wing design position at North sails, because apparently there are dead sheep in aukland who know more about wing design than the man who was the lone custodian of the technology for a decade. I'm battling the cost of high performance sailing about as hard as I can, but the files stay here. I'm considering the possibility of a licensed builder in europe as an alternative option.

 

Again, I really hope this is the sensible choice. A lot of how this process works is based on a set of observations regarding the snags most home-build projects hit and attempting to iron them out. Many parts of how this kit works don't fit the norm, but that is because the norm is wrong and needs to be fixed.

 

DRC

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UPDATE:

Over the past two days, I've spent a lot of time on the phone with shipping companies talking about freight rates. I've got to thank thisisnotaspoon for pointing out exactly how sharp import taxes are in some cases and really forcing the issue. Having looked througn this a good deal, Fulcrum Speedworks is now prepring to sell plans and hull licenses. I've been wary about such a concept as you can read above, but theres's only so much bilking via taxation and freight rates that I can swallow. We learn from our mistakes.

 

DRC

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I'm sure you're thinking of it already, but it occurred to me that if you can't find a builder to deal with them over there, could you find a CNC shop? The Europeans can correct me if I'm wrong, but shipping and taxes when playing within the EU is relatively cheap (to international shipping/taxes). Dave, could you find a sailor who has a CNC/shop who would be willing to be the guy to do the work out there? Fulcrum Speedworks Europe? It covers a lot of your worry about IP, gives the European guys somebody to talk to, and hopefully they could be a source of help to the guys out there (in specialized areas, you can often get better support from a local rather than calling most of the way around the world).

 

Just sticking this out there. And I've started a piggy bank for my boat.

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No import duty or VAT payable when shipping between EU countries (tax havens like the Channel Islands and Isle of Man asside), just VAT paid to the country where the sale took place (20% at the moment in the UK, 21% in Germany). The calculation for importing stuff is done as (value of the goods + shipping) x import duty rate x VAT rate. The import duty rate is relatively small, for canoes and sailing hardware it's 2.7%, I guess dinghies ain kit form are the same.

 

You'd have to do the sums, my gut feeling is it should be cheaper to 'build' the kit in the EU, as there's less shipping, but as any EU supplier will be paying that 20% VAT anyway maybe it doesn't (assuming there's no need to pay a state sales tax on that kit price quoted?). There's no way for example I could get a mast for what you quote, £1500/$2250 is pretty much the going rat eregardless of suplier (selden, super spars, ardvark etc) so that saving alone pays a hefty ammount towards the shipping/tax.

 

I've no idea if it would/could work or not. Looking at http://jordanboats.co.uk/JB/canoe (the canadian kind) kits are about £450. I'm sure someone has done it with Phantom (the UK Phantom racing dinghy, not the sailfish lookalike) dinghies. The advantage to shipping from the USA would be you would have controll over quality, especialy with a family business doing it. A boatbuilder with a CNC machine might do the right thing, selecting lightweight good quality plywood, a CNC shop in an industrial unt might be less specific, making getting the boat down to weight (and strong) a more difficult proposition.

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The advantage to shipping from the USA would be you would have controll over quality, especialy with a family business doing it. A boatbuilder with a CNC machine might do the right thing, selecting lightweight good quality plywood, a CNC shop in an industrial unt might be less specific, making getting the boat down to weight (and strong) a more difficult proposition.

Got it in one. I'm going to spend the time looking into what sort of scheme raw plans will fit under, but my basic idea from the start was to make a kit so complete and sorted that it was actually easy to build and actually reliably good. An individual making the lot from scratch is the triple black diamond ski slope of homebuilding and, while its completely badass when someone pulls it off, making it easier helps the sport more. I have a mild suspicion that if the product really is to be such an easy kit it still ends up going six one way half a dozen the other with the taxes and shipping bit. It's especially so if, like you say, a UK builder has to pay that tax anyway. So the tax issue is actually a UK pricing structure issue rather than an import issue. The only real cost that can be dodged is the shipping cost. Doing that involves either re-working the instructions to make every single part homebuilable and yet still down to weight and up to strength, or moving all the tooling to britain, but then again, the VAT. At lest its not a 20 percent VAT on a 25 thousand dollar moth. More fun updates to come.

 

DRC

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What Dave is offering is very good value. 9 years ago all the stuff to build and complete my Hollow Log cost aboout $6000. Then a lot of the hard parts like seat and carriage I did a few more times before I got them good enough. Starting with all these important components from proven designs and from good IC people would have saved me a lot of time and money.

 

Some of Machette's heritage comes from the Hollow Log. Basic plans and instructions for the Log have been available on the Aust IC web site for nearly 10 years, but only a few people have accepted the challenge. One in Sydney and a few variations and developments by the Clarks culminating with Machette. Home building is fun but does require space, time, tools and skills. Starting with a good kit and good instructions helps hugely. What Dave has done is making this much more accessible for more people.

 

If you are interested in building an IC let Dave help you out, it will save time and money and you will have a good boat. You can not dodge death and taxes, you might as well have a good time on the way out.

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Yes if you are inclined to join the fun and like to make stuff this is a nice way to dive in. There is no cheaper way to get a reliable, proven product. If you are a genius NA or boatbuilder then great, but most folks aren't. This kit is for the rest of us.

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What does a decent (not race-winning, but not rags) set of sails run in the US?

 

I'm looking seriously at moving to a place with bigger - but thinner - water than I've got now and have concerns about flying a moth with 3 feet of water to crash in...might very well shift to an IC (because they look cool, and are about as nuts as foilers are). Do you run standard drop-in daggerboards and kick up rudders on these things, or are you pinning them in place to run t-foils like the I-14s?

 

Building my own would be loads of fun. Once I get my electric runabout finished and out of the way...

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Do you run standard drop-in daggerboards and kick up rudders on these things, or are you pinning them in place to run t-foils like the I-14s?

 

No consensus. Rudders are normally pretty small/short due to lots of leverage and aren't often a grounding issue. Often fixed in cassettes under boat or daggerboard at transom. Not many with lifting foils. Daggerboards are mainly drop in, a few in separate cassettes that can pivot a bit on impact, but I would thin weight tends to preclude this on 50kg boats.

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What does a decent (not race-winning, but not rags) set of sails run in the US?

 

I'm looking seriously at moving to a place with bigger - but thinner - water than I've got now and have concerns about flying a moth with 3 feet of water to crash in...might very well shift to an IC (because they look cool, and are about as nuts as foilers are). Do you run standard drop-in daggerboards and kick up rudders on these things, or are you pinning them in place to run t-foils like the I-14s?

 

Building my own would be loads of fun. Once I get my electric runabout finished and out of the way...

Taylor Sails in Port Townsend, WA built the sails that were 1st & 2nd at the last Worlds. I think they are about $1500/set. The guy's an artist.

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Do you run standard drop-in daggerboards and kick up rudders on these things, or are you pinning them in place to run t-foils like the I-14s?

 

No consensus. Rudders are normally pretty small/short due to lots of leverage and aren't often a grounding issue. Often fixed in cassettes under boat or daggerboard at transom. Not many with lifting foils. Daggerboards are mainly drop in, a few in separate cassettes that can pivot a bit on impact, but I would thin weight tends to preclude this on 50kg boats.

At present, machete has a drop-in daggerboard with a pair of cast polyuerethane fittings which absorb the force of grounding like ballistics gel. I tried it first on Dance Commander, and while weight savings could be had by switching to foam, the elasticity of the polyurethane means your trunk can survive numerous groundings on the same shock absorber before switching it out.

 

The rudder is on pintles to enable me to toy with the 14 t-foil idea. Its still unclear whether or not its actually worthwhile on the canoe but I figure I'll fiddle with the concept. The current basic rudder that comes with the kit is a scythe. The blade is bonded to the tiller. It goes into a trunk with gudgons that remains fixed to the boat. The practical upshot of this system in terms of grounding is that you can reef you rudder as you come in to shore. The blade at full depth draws about 24inches anyway, so the DB would hit bottom before the rudder.

 

If you miss the oddball individualistic DIY culture that has seemingly departed from the moth class, the IC is a great choice. Quirky, fast, dangerous, open ended. We have the lot. Used sails should cost roughly 500 dollars. The "used but not race winning" catergory doesn't really exist since we all buy on a three year cycle. So used is probably still race winning.

 

 

DRC

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The rudder is on pintles to enable me to toy with the 14 t-foil idea. Its still unclear whether or not its actually worthwhile on the canoe but I figure I'll fiddle with the concept. The current basic rudder that comes with the kit is a scythe. The blade is bonded to the tiller. It goes into a trunk with gudgons that remains fixed to the boat. The practical upshot of this system in terms of grounding is that you can reef you rudder as you come in to shore. The blade at full depth draws about 24inches anyway, so the DB would hit bottom before the rudder.

From my (limited) experience on the I14s with a t-foil the biggest advantage was that you could use the foil to trim the boat as well as weight which meant that you didn't have to move around fore-aft as much. I don't know if this is true for competitive I14s but it felt true when sailing for fun. I would guess this would be a huge benefit to the canoes as then you don't have to move the seat around as much to account for chop.

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Do you see tfoil trim on IC as useful for quick short duration change for individual waves, or to buy some time to move carriage, or need to try it and decide how/if to utilize it?

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Getting aft and using the t foil to keep the bow down upwind would be the best use. Then you just blow it off atthe windward mark and the nose stays clear of any mining activity. You would be able to cruise through point of sail changes a bit better. That's the theory. What's odd is that the class has been experimenting with this system on and off for about ten years and the results are still pretty blurry. Odds are that's because the benefits found in the I14 are not benefits so much as flaw remediation. The 14 is terriffically underhulled and has nasty pitch problems associated with that. The t foil near the surface both extends the effective waterline and damps pitch. Great! but the canoe is 3 feet longer than the 14 and has a far finer wave entry than the 14. So most development canoes drive quite smoothly anyway. Exhibit A: chris maas' "Peril" which has a hullshape thoroughly similar to machete got its most astounding separation from the fleet in race 1 at the 2014 worlds. Race 1 was a 20+ knot affair (like all the races in that regatta) and the only one where chris didn't use his t-foil. In all the subsequent races, chris was pretty dominant, but to my memory we didn't all get comprehensively horizon-jobbed as badly as in race 1. It is neccessarry to point ot that the t chris was using was a pretty slick affair, so this can't be chalked up to a draggy first draft foil. It was a very good T with a worm gear control taken from a bladerider rudder. So these were pretty ideal conditions and the boat was a textbook type to benefit from a t foil. And yet in a three lap race in an absolutely evil wave state, the straight foil format took us all by storm. Given that evidence and the above stated theory behind it I'd say that different classes have different challenges to overcome and pitch elimination in the canoe isn't as worth the drag as it is in the 14.

 

DRC

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Dave--

 

After putting some thought into it... I think you might want to consider offering a 'basic' rigging and hardware package with your boat, as an option, along with another quick manual on how to install it. While I completely agree with your statement that rigging an IC is an agressively personal thing, and I would never myself order such a package....the whole point of your kit boat is that it's making ICs accessable to people that previously would've had a hard time completing a custom build from scratch. Therefore, they may not be avid IC sailors already, and therefore, a simple kit with proven performance designed by an experienced IC sailor might really benefit a first-time kit buyer.

 

When it comes down to it, I continue to regard Canoes as extremely pure forms of sailing because they really do not reward super-tweaky ideal so much as they reward constant attention to the actual sailing. A boat this challanging to sail holds simplicity in the highest regard. Even my attempt at 'uber-tweaky'--my cunningham led to the seat with bungee takeups inside--I constantly debate as to wether or not I should just rip it out and simplify. At Worlds, I adjusted the cunningham upwind perhaps a dozen times, but I definitly flipped at least twice due to getting that line wrapped around my foot at an inoppertune time. Net gain or net loss? Probably the latter.

 

Your customers are, of course, the ultimate judge of necessity, but I bet there are one or two fence-sitters who might be convinced to take the plunge with the knowlege that all of the skull sweat has been done for them already.

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Dave--

 

After putting some thought into it... I think you might want to consider offering a 'basic' rigging and hardware package with your boat, as an option, along with another quick manual on how to install it. While I completely agree with your statement that rigging an IC is an agressively personal thing, and I would never myself order such a package....the whole point of your kit boat is that it's making ICs accessable to people that previously would've had a hard time completing a custom build from scratch. Therefore, they may not be avid IC sailors already, and therefore, a simple kit with proven performance designed by an experienced IC sailor might really benefit a first-time kit buyer.

 

 

Agreed and I'm on it. The final chapter of the manual is a super basic rigging guide based off the idiot-proofed systems that I use, including a shopping list for the parts involved, which can all be bought online. However, if I was doing an actual bag of stuff, I'd want to sell it at the exact cost I bought it at, to save people moolah. So it would just turn into pure inventory cost. Now, if I get a ton of kit orders this month, I could probably do a bulk order and save everybody a bit. Maybe in the future. I'm also writing up a manual on how to make a good dolly on the cheap out of hardware store parts.

 

DRC

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Such a good idea, know of one friend out here that is considering it, a preordained kit would make it all so much easier and faster to finish. Keep up the great work David, much success to ya!

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What does a decent (not race-winning, but not rags) set of sails run in the US?

 

I'm looking seriously at moving to a place with bigger - but thinner - water than I've got now and have concerns about flying a moth with 3 feet of water to crash in...might very well shift to an IC (because they look cool, and are about as nuts as foilers are). Do you run standard drop-in daggerboards and kick up rudders on these things, or are you pinning them in place to run t-foils like the I-14s?

 

Building my own would be loads of fun. Once I get my electric runabout finished and out of the way...

Taylor Sails in Port Townsend, WA built the sails that were 1st & 2nd at the last Worlds. I think they are about $1500/set. The guy's an artist.

Isn't Taylor sails in PT.Angeles?

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So wish I had the money to build one over here! Looks awesome dave

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What was the surface area of Chris foil? Your logic that the benefits that i14s find in the foil would be reduced is sound. Perhaps the foil was larger (and thus draggier) than it needed to be? How did it compare with say the foil on your dad's latest C-Class?

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Being the guy who built it, I can answer these questions.

 

Time to build. Screwing about and dithering more than a little, I had the hull decked over in 20 days. I then took some time to mould the parts that come prefab with the boat (tracks, track landers, sexy carbon pintal mounts etc) and had it done a while after that. I'd put the build time for the hull at about 40 days at a weekend warrior pace.

 

Cost. The bare hull kit is 2000 US dollars. That includes tracks and track landers (all carbon) which are structurally essential to the hull. The all inclusive kit with IM7 carbon spars, seat kit, seat carriage and foils is 5000 US dollars. Frankly, I think that's pretty fair. If I'd had to buy the kit to do what I did over again, I'd do it in a heartbeat. It's a great pleasure to be able to go rip around in a boat you fully built yourself.

 

Setting. I built the hull in an 800 square foot storage space/shed in Ithaca, NY. That was waaaay more space than I needed. When I asked my dad to design the kit, I was pretty adamant about it needing to be simple enough to build in a dorm room (providing your roommate is cool). As is, the hull is so thin and light, you just pick it up and walk it out the door like a suitcase when you are done. That's not a garage door, folks, that's a standard twenty-some-odd inch door. I used hand tools to build it. I got really pissed at the idea that instruction 1 of a kit could be "switch on your state of the art workshop". While I had a table saw, a band saw and a drill press and a vacuum pump, they wound up going unused. You build it with a bag of tools and a caulk gun full of west system 610. As I said in the article, I'm no genius builder. I bet you can do it more nicely than I did. That's kinda the point of a kit.

 

I do this kind of stuff because people are smarter and more capable than businesses give them credit for and because the fact that the moth costs the price of a friggin Impreza disgusts me. There aren't enough rich people in the world to sustain the sport on an all-carbon diet. People deserve better. People deserve to be enabled to build things themselves and be something other than consumers. Break the envelope.

 

David Rittenhouse Clark

Owner Operator- Fulcrum Speedworks

fulcrumspeedworks.com

https://www.facebook.com/fulcrumspeedworks

Hello Mother's Day present.

 

In pink and bronze please.

 

Now to figure out how to text a link :)

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Yeah I know gybeset. When you have a little one you have no money for big projects and also no time for it either! I have no idea where in syd you would sail i, as it feels like most clubs don't have a open class div, unlike the clubs i have sailed at i victoria who always had am open div with times corrected by the YV yardstick.

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What was the surface area of Chris foil? Your logic that the benefits that i14s find in the foil would be reduced is sound. Perhaps the foil was larger (and thus draggier) than it needed to be? How did it compare with say the foil on your dad's latest C-Class?

Classified! Classified!... well they were smaller than the C-class foils but also remember that speed determines the amount of foil you need and the c class is ripping 20+ as a baseline, so the c-foil doesn't need to be as large. I think chris got the size perfect for the job, but the boat has eight-foot tracks you can shoot the carriage back on so the foil was again, basically redundant.

 

In other news, I just took machete to the CT River Dinghy Distance Race. Total blast. She took the overall win by twenty minutes after the addition of a very heavy handicap. So that was fun. It may answer some people's questions about where one can sail it.

 

DRC

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Was awesome to see Dave and Machete this weekend. At least until he disappeared over the horizon!

It was awesome to be there. Fun race. Hopefully I'll be easier to see on the horizon with these new machete custom cut sails that I just got from Taylor Sails. More footage coming soon.

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post-100627-0-00824600-1431975050_thumb.png

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Was awesome to see Dave and Machete this weekend. At least until he disappeared over the horizon!

It was awesome to be there. Fun race. Hopefully I'll be easier to see on the horizon with these new machete custom cut sails that I just got from Taylor Sails. More footage coming soon.

 

 

Boom city

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Dave, how much for a new daggerboard, and how much more to make it float? Disregard that second part. I know Mickey feels bad enough about losing his. Very nice looking boat with the new sails. How much for it as is, all up?

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Dave, how much for a new daggerboard, and how much more to make it float? Disregard that second part.

 

Don't the boards have to float (as prescribed by the rules)? If not then that seems like a bit of oversight, certainly the boards and boats are small and slippery enough that one could easily drop the board overboard and never see it again.

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Dave, how much for a new daggerboard, and how much more to make it float? Disregard that second part. I know Mickey feels bad enough about losing his. Very nice looking boat with the new sails. How much for it as is, all up?

A new DB finished would be $400 +RI sales Tax= $428. Rudders are actually the costlier of the two, as they are more complicated. All of our daggerboards float since they are either foam, nomex or hollow cored. We have being getting kinda ridiculous with core customization lately.

 

As to your second question, are you referring to buying Machete outright? If so, I'd put it at about $14000 all in, sails, foils the lot. That's partially because I really want a boat to sail this season and I think I'm passing up on some serious regatta wins if I part with the newest IC in the world right now. Also I need it as the fancy display model right now. Ask me in November and we can make a deal. Or I can start building another Machete from the ground up for you right now. We just had six kits cut and a couple aren't yet sold. I expect I could do that turnkey for 12 or 13 grand. Kinda defeats the purpose of the kit but I'm starting to suspect that I can fire off a Machete build faster than a Dance Commander build.

 

DRC

 

 

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How freakin far back does the carriage go? Seriously looks like fun! Now some from on board plz!

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The carriage can go right back to the corner.

That is to say within 1" of the front of the tiller.

You have to slide it forward before you try to gybe because there is no place to stand back there.

But Dave also puts non skid on the transom just in case you have to hook a toe there.

One of the design details was to make sure the boat didn't sink out from under you when you got back there, certainly things get pretty unstable if you slow down much all the way back in the bus.

SHC

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Is the luff sleeve on that sail really made of Tyvek?

Doesn't look like it goes all the way along the mast, and I know that 2 weeks ago that boat used a bolt-rope. Maybe a camera-mounting system?

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Is the luff sleeve on that sail really made of Tyvek?

Doesn't look like it goes all the way along the mast, and I know that 2 weeks ago that boat used a bolt-rope. Maybe a camera-mounting system?

 

We have a winner! Tyvek tape is obnoxiously sticky and very low profile; the perfect tape for attaching a masthead gopro stick without bolts.

DRC

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Dave, what sort of stick do you use up there? Must be relatively stiff to not flap all over the place with the gopro at its end but also relatively low profile (since you care about how low profile the tape is)

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Fast to frightening

Looking good Dave! Thanks for letting me try your new ride, definitely one of the highlights of my week end. Your boat looks fantastic.

Fucking canoes are polluting my little brain again :) gotta stay focused.

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Fast to frightening

Looking good Dave! Thanks for letting me try your new ride, definitely one of the highlights of my week end. Your boat looks fantastic.

Fucking canoes are polluting my little brain again :) gotta stay focused.

 

Thanks, Gui. But seriously, screw focus. Join the revolt.

 

Rhet, It's a solid carbon tube actually. I find that low profile is more important in the tape than the stick. If it can't peel away in wind and water, the stick underneath can't be pulled off.

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So where the main sheet attaches to the hull - does it slide with the carriage ?

Mainsheet attaches to a mount on the aft side of the carriage and then the carriage attaches to the hull. Slides with the whole system. Others have built mainsheet towers but you lose mechanical advantage putting it forward of the whole carriage run. Ends up being less good.

DRC

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okay, so when carriage is moved sheet is adjusted if you want boom to stay in same place ?

 

there doesn't seem top be self tacker on jib - so easier to build, and rig ?

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This may have been answered before, but how much does the machete draw? And how resistant are the daggerboard cases to grounding? Having seen what was on the nethercott it looks like they would be pretty resistant to most groundings (just blow out the case) unlike boats like the 29er which will just slice into the hull.

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okay, so when carriage is moved sheet is adjusted if you want boom to stay in same place ?

 

there doesn't seem top be self tacker on jib - so easier to build, and rig ?

Yup. And self tackers have been done to good effect before, I just wanted to get on the water immediately. Also, there's a slight boat-handling advantage to doing an oldschool jib.

 

This may have been answered before, but how much does the machete draw? And how resistant are the daggerboard cases to grounding? Having seen what was on the nethercott it looks like they would be pretty resistant to most groundings (just blow out the case) unlike boats like the 29er which will just slice into the hull.

Three feet deep and we build them with shock absorbers. My trunks are rectangular boxes with a board-shaped medium durometer polyurethane casting at the top and bottom. When you go aground the board just sinks into that like ballistics jelly. They're also super easy to switch out if you've really torched one.

DRC

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