GeorgeT415

Boats for Big Chaps

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Hi all, 

I am 16, 5ft11 and weigh c.93kg (205lbs), I am heavy but not fat (I'm not a beefcake either), I currently sail a laser but find I am under powered until it hits about 12-14knts. I sail in the solent (UK) so I have lots of sea-room and considerable sea states at times. I have been sailing for about 8 years and do so at national regattas with my school sailing team so have some experience. The problem I have with the laser is a lack of room and power (I have a problem that restricts my "gymnastic ability" so I struggle to contort myself to fit under the boom without being in pain for several days after). I am looking for a boat that is bigger and more powerful but controllable, fleet size is not an issue as I mainly sail handicap in my area but availability of competition would be nice. Any suggestions of boats you know of or have experience with that fit my needs would be great. Many thanks.

GeorgeT415

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1 hour ago, GeorgeT415 said:

Hi all, 

I am 16, 5ft11 and weigh c.93kg (205lbs), I am heavy but not fat (I'm not a beefcake either), I currently sail a laser but find I am under powered until it hits about 12-14knts. I sail in the solent (UK) so I have lots of sea-room and considerable sea states at times. I have been sailing for about 8 years and do so at national regattas with my school sailing team so have some experience. The problem I have with the laser is a lack of room and power (I have a problem that restricts my "gymnastic ability" so I struggle to contort myself to fit under the boom without being in pain for several days after). I am looking for a boat that is bigger and more powerful but controllable, fleet size is not an issue as I mainly sail handicap in my area but availability of competition would be nice. Any suggestions of boats you know of or have experience with that fit my needs would be great. Many thanks.

GeorgeT415

RS Aero 9.  Higher boom than Laser. More power. More comfortable. Sailed competitively by guys heavier than you. Won the Olympic Trials.

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Consider Melges 14, specifically designed for bigger sailors.

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I go with the Phantom, Blaze or Finn. All have active fleets in the UK if you wanted to do some opens. 

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You are 16. Nethercott IC's are very cheap. Learn to sail it in a blow and don't look back.

 

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1 hour ago, GeorgeT415 said:

So far I've been thinking possibly OK, IC or Finn? what do you guys think?

 

The ok always looks like a bit of a squeeze, but I know a few big guys who sail them and they all love them. I'm sure the class association would arrange for you to have a sail.

The Finn is a proper big boat and a right handful, especially as it sounds you're somewhere quite exposed. A load of people will chip in that they're 80kg and 103 years old and they're fine. They'll sail on a lake in 6 knots which they think is 15.

IC is pretty special but very different. You'd want to get a go before committing to that as well. Again, try the class website.

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Missed you were 16. The Aero will have a good party but won't be cheap. Can you really get a cheap IC? Duno, but it would be great fun if you could.

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You're about the same size as Sir Ben when he sailed the Swedish Dinghy.

Strong UK fleet both coastal and inland, you can get into a competitive boat for roughly the same cost as a nice Laser, possibly cheaper with the ongoing economic crash. Not sure if Pindar is still doing the Youth Team but if they are they might even provide a boat and regatta costs.

Sturdy, almost overbuilt boats, seaworthy as all hell, nice to have the power and the mass to punch through waves rather than slap into the side and stop. In both Rio and Enoshima there were days that the Finns were the only boat that could go out.

I don't know any UK Finnsters on SA but the UK site or Rodney Cobb might be able to point you in the right direction.

http://finnuk.org.uk/

https://www.suntouched.co.uk/

 

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At 15 stone I am having a jolly good time knocking about in my AERO 9. 
 

 

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OK dinghy all the way, there's more space than you think ( well not really, but you don't need much), and entry level boats are cheap. 

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If the OP is having trouble fitting under the boom on a Laser such that  " I struggle to contort myself to fit under the boom without being in pain for several days after”, a Finn is not going to be an improvement.  Something with a trapeze might avoid the back issues. Boats that aren’t already popular on the Solent are not going to be good candidates either.  Sailing by yourself or having to resort to Portsmouth Yardstick is less than optimal.   There do seem to be a good number of RS boats that might work. They’re popular in the UK for school sailing events.  Hayling Island SC also has a 5o5 fleet, and if the OP is 16 and probably still growing, that might also be a long-term option.  If the back problems persist, there are also plenty of keelboats on the Solent that need crew.  

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Buy a "gentlemen's Finn", the Megabyte.  Wipe the other Portsmouth boats off the map while staying comfy.

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I think you just need to sail the Laser and save your money.  I'm 6'3" and 220lbs (need to work on the second part) and I enjoy racing Lasers just fine, in light air too.  I have no trouble getting under the boom and I'll be straight with you, it's more about skill and experience than size.  At your size, I'd be way happier.  You're barely out of the optimum size for a Laser unlike me.  When we race in our Tuesday night series, some of the fastest people in the fleet are my size.  Why?  Experience.  We rarely get 12 knots and when we do...watch out, the big boys get to shine but again, it still comes down to boat handling as even the big guys make mistakes and roll over.  

So don't sweat the size, you're not too big by any stretch of the imagination and just sail.

 

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Hi WCB, it's not just size it's a medical problem which affects my ability to get under the boom (similar effect to mild arthritis but caused by different things), it's stated in my OP

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You've had some good suggestions here. You should be able to get a sail in any of these boats. Try the class associations through their websites. I wouldn't buy any without having a go. I know people in most of those classes suggested, and I'm sure they will sort you out.

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Any suggestion other than the finn should be ignored and those people making those other suggestions should be banned from making suggestions

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9 hours ago, GeorgeT415 said:

Hi WCB, it's not just size it's a medical problem which affects my ability to get under the boom (similar effect to mild arthritis but caused by different things), it's stated in my OP

I saw the mention of it but didn't translate a problem with gymnastic ability to being a medical problem.  Sorry to hear about your mild arthritis. 

One thing that we did with some of our boats (J22s) due to the low racing boom not being necessary for everybody was to order a sail with a shortened leech to pick up the boom.  I bet you could reach out to a company like ISails, who made our special J22 main, to see about making one of their Laser practice sails with a shorter leech to pick your boom up to give you more room.  If you're just going out to sail, it would be a nice way to go.  By the way, the sails are no more expensive than a traditional J22 main, quite a bit less actually when they don't come from a major sail loft.  https://isails.com

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IC is for you because you don’t have to get under the boom, but you walk around behind.

 

Dave Clark is as tall as you are but much lighter. There are plenty sailors who are as heavy as you are. 

There is a good fleet at a Hayling Island.

ICs are the fastest option, and the most technical to sail.  

Sailing a Finn is like driving nails with your hand.

SHC

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19 hours ago, Steve Clark said:

Sailing a Finn is like driving nails with your hand.

SHC

You should file for a trademark / copyright on that before the Finn class takes that as a new "build the fleet" slogan! :lol:

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1 hour ago, Alan Crawford said:

You should file for a trademark / copyright on that before the Finn class takes that as a new "build the fleet" slogan! :lol:

It stops hurting eventually...

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On 4/6/2020 at 7:44 PM, Steve Clark said:

IC is for you because you don’t have to get under the boom, but you walk around behind.

 

Dave Clark is as tall as you are but much lighter. There are plenty sailors who are as heavy as you are. 

There is a good fleet at a Hayling Island.

ICs are the fastest option, and the most technical to sail.  

Sailing a Finn is like driving nails with your hand.

SHC

You have got to be kidding me. IC's are great for people that want to tinker endlessly on their boats and then sail once in a while when it's 10 kts and flat water . They maybe race against another couple of boats once a year with very few actually finishing . Oh yeah, you also have to be a spider monkey to balance on this 1 ft wide board that slides from side to side and a boat that about 1 ft wide. 

Whereas in the finn, you are in an indestructable boat that can sail in 5 to 35 kts . Fleets around the world with the best, most fit sailors and those that are trying to be. Most of the greatest sailors sailed finns...the IC not so much.  

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I love sailing my Finn in all sorts of breezes. 

I'm also 5'11", 205 lbs and while not 16 anymore I imagine OP is at least as agile as my 45 year old self. 

 

While the boom is low, the deep cockpit gives plenty of room to get by.  And contrary to a previous post I do find it considerably easier to tack and gybe than the Laser. 

Someone suggested moving the boom up a bit.  I've not done this on my Finn, but I have done it on other boats with significant success.  It's very easy to do and I haven't been able to determine any negative impacts. 

 

Have fun

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On 4/7/2020 at 3:53 PM, Alan Crawford said:
On 4/6/2020 at 8:44 PM, Steve Clark said:

Sailing a Finn is like driving nails with your hand.

SHC

You should file for a trademark / copyright on that before the Finn class takes that as a new "build the fleet" slogan! 

Except that he mis-spelled "head"

FB- Doug

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Just about as many ICs as Finns in the USA.  

Most people can’t sail anything in 35 knots, to pretend that the majority of the Finn class can sail a Finn in 35knots of wind bullshit. Olympians, yes. Posters on Sailing Anarchy, no fucking chance.

I have sailed Finns, and built about 150 of them. I was knocked unconscious by a Finn boom when I was about 12.  I would take an IC out in wind I wouldn’t sail a Finn, partially because the Canoe is safer and more fun.... west of Alcatraz in an ebb tide with the Bay turned up to 11.  If that’s nasty enough for you. Nothing with one hull goes to windward like a canoe.

ICs really go fast in big winds, and can beat up on almost any thing with one hull.  It’s not easy, but it’s a fuck load of fun, and once you are good enough, you go twice as fast as a Finn.  One mile beats take slightly less than 10 minutes.  10 mile Gold Cup courses take just about an hour.  

And you don’t have to duck under the boom, which was GeorgeT415s concern.

SHC

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i'm a bit older than the op (pushing 60) and have back and knee trouble but I can still manage my Laser in most conditions.

I also sail a GP14 which is much easier on the body and still pretty good fun. There are dozens of two handers out there and id

say it would be well worth your while to investgate them, you might even find a pretty girl to sail with!

 

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My suggestion against the IC is going to be the cost involved in maintaining a high performance boat at the OP's age. I think the A-Cat (classic, straight board boat) would be a slightly better fit-easier to sail, potentially larger fleet, but also expensive to maintain. If there is an RS Aero fleet locally, I would take a close look at that, they look relatively comfortable for a dinghy.

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3 hours ago, samc99us said:

My suggestion against the IC is going to be the cost involved in maintaining a high performance boat at the OP's age. I think the A-Cat (classic, straight board boat) would be a slightly better fit-easier to sail, potentially larger fleet, but also expensive to maintain. If there is an RS Aero fleet locally, I would take a close look at that, they look relatively comfortable for a dinghy.

The RS Aero is a bad choice here in my opinion. As a bigger guy myself but w/o the medical problems the OP mentioned, I found the boat to feel awfully small. It was light air on the only opportunity that I got to sail one but every little movement affected the balance of the boat greatly.  If having to make quick movements is a problem due to arthritis, then I think the Aero is a mistake.  Not to mention the fact that if you're concerned about expense, you can find a fun, fast, used A Cat with conventional boards for a third of the price of an Aero and they are not expensive to own.  I had a straight board A Cat a number of years ago and I did drop some coin on fixing it up but that was a choice, not a requirement.  

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On 4/4/2020 at 7:05 AM, GeorgeT415 said:

Hi all, 

I am 16, 5ft11 and weigh c.93kg (205lbs), I am heavy but not fat (I'm not a beefcake either), I currently sail a laser but find I am under powered until it hits about 12-14knts. I sail in the solent (UK) so I have lots of sea-room and considerable sea states at times. I have been sailing for about 8 years and do so at national regattas with my school sailing team so have some experience. The problem I have with the laser is a lack of room and power (I have a problem that restricts my "gymnastic ability" so I struggle to contort myself to fit under the boom without being in pain for several days after). I am looking for a boat that is bigger and more powerful but controllable, fleet size is not an issue as I mainly sail handicap in my area but availability of competition would be nice. Any suggestions of boats you know of or have experience with that fit my needs would be great. Many thanks.

GeorgeT415

You're 16?  Still have a little growing room there sport.  I'm with Surf Nazi.  Finn all the way.  The boom does look to be a bit of a deck sweeper, (at least on the aft deck) going upwind, but I haven't sailed one, (yet ;-)) so check on that.

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6 hours ago, RobbieB said:

The boom does look to be a bit of a deck sweeper, (at least on the aft deck) going upwind, but I haven't sailed one, (yet ;-)) so check on that.

Boom hits the aft deck when close-hauled. There's roughly the same amount of room through a tack as there is on a Laser, cockpit is significantly deeper and the boom pops up a couple inches when you crack off the mainsheet. Hiking position is more ergonomic on new Devoti/Pata/Hitech/Petticrows boats too, roughly 120o between the femur and the tibia.

I don't know the OP's specific health issues but I would certainly encourage him to at least try it out.

fotonoticia_20101120190031_640.jpg

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Get in touch with Rodney Cobb at Suntouched Sailboats. He can fill you in on everything you would ever want to know about Finn sailing in the UK. I believe his shop is closed at the moment, like most of sailing. But bet he is answering emails and he posts on Facebook everyday.

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On 4/10/2020 at 1:48 PM, Steve Clark said:

Just about as many ICs as Finns in the USA.  

Most people can’t sail anything in 35 knots, to pretend that the majority of the Finn class can sail a Finn in 35knots of wind bullshit. Olympians, yes. Posters on Sailing Anarchy, no fucking chance.

I have sailed Finns, and built about 150 of them. I was knocked unconscious by a Finn boom when I was about 12.  I would take an IC out in wind I wouldn’t sail a Finn, partially because the Canoe is safer and more fun.... west of Alcatraz in an ebb tide with the Bay turned up to 11.  If that’s nasty enough for you. Nothing with one hull goes to windward like a canoe.

ICs really go fast in big winds, and can beat up on almost any thing with one hull.  It’s not easy, but it’s a fuck load of fun, and once you are good enough, you go twice as fast as a Finn.  One mile beats take slightly less than 10 minutes.  10 mile Gold Cup courses take just about an hour.  

And you don’t have to duck under the boom, which was GeorgeT415s concern.

SHC

I call bullshit that there are as many IC's as finns in the US. You cannot be serious. You must have brain damage from your finn boom incident . There are around 75 ranked finn sailors by US finn class and that's just those who have sailed in ranked events. There are around 100 dues paying members and there are certainly waaay more boats than that.

How many IC's race in the US ? I helped with the IC midwinters a couple of times and there were only a handful of boats and my duties entailed rescuing most of the fleet when they could not get back to the harbor in maybe 15kts of wind.

No one is saying that there majority of finn sailors can sail in 35 kts. I can and have plenty of witnesses to my bravery/stupidity. I can't race in 35 but the best certainly can and the boat can. Yes, the IC is much faster but it is a hard boat to sail and yes, I can do it but the finn is much easier by comparison.

We've met and I respect you and all that you have added to sailing but when you trash the finn, I'm going to call you on it.   

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On 4/10/2020 at 6:34 PM, WCB said:

The RS Aero is a bad choice here in my opinion. As a bigger guy myself but w/o the medical problems the OP mentioned, I found the boat to feel awfully small. It was light air on the only opportunity that I got to sail one but every little movement affected the balance of the boat greatly.  If having to make quick movements is a problem due to arthritis, then I think the Aero is a mistake.  Not to mention the fact that if you're concerned about expense, you can find a fun, fast, used A Cat with conventional boards for a third of the price of an Aero and they are not expensive to own.  I had a straight board A Cat a number of years ago and I did drop some coin on fixing it up but that was a choice, not a requirement.  

Fair enough. I generally agree that the A-Cat is a cheap boat to own and sail if you don't worry about upgrading it.

I think the OP should find a crew slot on the 505 or equivalent as a good starting point.

From a UK dinghy perspective, the Hadron H2 looks pretty suitable, but it is a new class without too many boats around: https://www.bluelightning.co.uk/H2/H2.shtm

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The guy is based in the UK.  The Byte was a damp fizzle in the pan, the Magebyte never even started.  You think he should import one?

Nothing against Finns, lovely boats.  But he is 16, any finn he could afford would be a shitter.

Hadrons are nice, but again, £6000 plus, as all the boats are newish.

A class cats and Contenders, lovely, but boats to work up too, not for kids.

Blaze.  Big and comfy, cheap, fastish, high boom. Some class racing.  Established PY number.

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I've nothing against the Finn, never sailed one, never will as I weigh 70kg.  One thing I've noticed about Finn sailors is they're so defensive about everything and seem to have a chip the size of their boats on their shoulder.  Where does this come from?  Why does this come about?  Anyone not fully behind the Finn propaganda gets both barrels.  Perhaps it's why the antique hung on at the Olympics for as long as it did.  Every time the discussion came up bunch of big lads went nuts.  'What are we going to do about all the mad big lads? Fuck it, we'll talk about it again in 4 years, perhaps they'll have taken their meds then.'

Back on topic they have a few of those Blaze (what is the plural of Blaze?) at our club.  I don't think I'd recommend one to a 16 year old, not sure why exactly, just I don't think you'd fit in with the lads.

You're going to have more mates in the Aero, mostly sailing smaller rigs, but at the same venue.  IC would be a great blast but possibly a lot of money.

Contact some of the people while we're locked down.  They're all bored too.  They'll talk to you about their boats and arrange for you to have a sail when we get allowed out.

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1 hour ago, European Bloke said:

 

You're going to have more mates in the Aero, mostly sailing smaller rigs, but at the same venue.  IC would be a great blast but possibly a lot of money.

Contact some of the people while we're locked down.  They're all bored too.  They'll talk to you about their boats and arrange for you to have a sail when we get allowed out.

There is a very active RS Aero Youth Training program in the UK. https://www.rsaerosailing.org/index.asp?p=news&nid=10821.

And there were 50 sailors at the RS Aero UK Youth Championship at Rutland SC last summer.

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Hi Alan, 

Here I am checking back in, I'm currently considering the finn and IC (perhaps the straight board A-Cat) and will have to wait until the virus is over to go on a test sail but am currently favouring the IC, as to joining as a crew for a 505 or the like, I simply can't make that commitment to a helm due to my attendance of a full time boarding school, so I can only sail during the holidays on my own or the local club on the two open weekends i get a term.

Also if I do decide to take the IC route does anyone know of any plans / kits (excluding machetes as I know of these already) that I could use, I already have some building experience and a kit or set of designs should be a good way to build myself a IC

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9 hours ago, European Bloke said:

I've nothing against the Finn, never sailed one, never will as I weigh 70kg.  One thing I've noticed about Finn sailors is they're so defensive about everything and seem to have a chip the size of their boats on their shoulder.  Where does this come from?  Why does this come about?  Anyone not fully behind the Finn propaganda gets both barrels.  Perhaps it's why the antique hung on at the Olympics for as long as it did.  Every time the discussion came up bunch of big lads went nuts.  'What are we going to do about all the mad big lads?

Mostly because of threads like this where 80kg dudes insist that an IC or an Aero 9 is "just as good" for big guys as the Finn.

There are very few singlehanders that have the sail area, stiffness and hull volume to make 90+ kg men competitive. Period. Call it a niche market, call it whatever, but pretty much every new dinghy that comes out is targeted for 80kg guys, not designed for big dudes. For the most part we don't say anything since there's obviously a big market for the majority of the world that's smaller than us, but when the inevitable "I outgrew my Laser, now what?" threads start, and guys start chiming in that "I weigh 230 and I'm just as competitive in my Laser as I was when I was 17", I call bullshit. Sure, you've got more experience getting starts and picking your shifts, but you're getting passed in light air, you're getting passed in medium air, and you're getting passed downwind by guys who weigh what the boat is designed for by the simple fact that you're displacing more water and your wetted surface is greater-you're going to be slower to plane, you're going to be slower coming out of a tack, you're going to be slower changing gears, and you're doing everyone a disservice who might benefit in being in a boat designed for a bigger crew weight-which given current demographic shifts is going to become a bigger portion of the market every year.

Obviously we get mad when we keep going up to the chopping block every Quad at the Olympics-there are hundreds of young guys in Lasers or 420s right now who will grow into "Finn-size" within this quad and want to keep sailing at the Olympic level. Given recent decisions by World Sailing it's become clear that they don't want anybody greater than 85kg sailing at the Olympics, and everyone who has put their education or their careers on hold and spent a great deal of time and money getting into boats, training, and going to regattas has flushed that down the drain.

We're here, we've been at the party for longer than pretty much everyone else. If you weigh more than 90kg and you want to race singlehanded, we're pretty much the only game in town. The OK is still around as the poor man's Finn but doesn't do nearly as good a job and the class is pretty much nonexistant in the Americas. The VX Evo is a distant third, and even they're nerfing their boats with reduced-area mainsails and adding keels so 150lb guys can hang on long enough to finish a race. You can throw some wildcards in like Contenders or whatever weird esoteric pond boats they have in the UK but as far as international competition in singlehanded one design monohulls goes, you can kick and scream all you like but until a new designer and builder starts doing something new, we're still going.

 

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44 minutes ago, onepointfivethumbs said:

Obviously we get mad when we keep going up to the chopping block every Quad at the Olympics-there are hundreds of young guys in Lasers or 420s right now who will grow into "Finn-size" within this quad and want to keep sailing at the Olympic level. Given recent decisions by World Sailing it's become clear that they don't want anybody greater than 85kg sailing at the Olympics, and everyone who has put their education or their careers on hold and spent a great deal of time and money getting into boats, training, and going to regattas has flushed that down the drain.


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Flush smart by keeping the following items out of your toilet:

  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Tissues
  • Napkins
  • Paper towels
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Diapers
  • Finn sailors

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1 hour ago, GeorgeT415 said:

Hi Alan, 

Here I am checking back in, I'm currently considering the finn and IC (perhaps the straight board A-Cat) and will have to wait until the virus is over to go on a test sail but am currently favouring the IC, as to joining as a crew for a 505 or the like, I simply can't make that commitment to a helm due to my attendance of a full time boarding school, so I can only sail during the holidays on my own or the local club on the two open weekends i get a term.

Also if I do decide to take the IC route does anyone know of any plans / kits (excluding machetes as I know of these already) that I could use, I already have some building experience and a kit or set of designs should be a good way to build myself a IC

Steve Clark, who made the original proposition on the IC, offers plans for people to build their own IC.  He has multiple generations of plans and most if not all are designed to be made out of stressed plywood.  Definitely reach out to him on a private message if that interests you.  He also knows everybody in the IC class so can connect you to others as needed.  

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26 minutes ago, tillerman said:


Flush-smart-768x510.jpg


Flush smart by keeping the following items out of your toilet:

  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Tissues
  • Napkins
  • Paper towels
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Diapers
  • Finn sailors

It's funny because Finn sailors have a regatta in New York called....the toilet bowl regatta or something like that.  I think it has to do with the particular lake that they sail on but I remember seeing the trophy, an old toilet bowl.  That is one trophy that I would not want to bring home.

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1 hour ago, onepointfivethumbs said:

Mostly because of threads like this where 80kg dudes insist that an IC or an Aero 9 is "just as good" for big guys as the Finn.

There are very few singlehanders that have the sail area, stiffness and hull volume to make 90+ kg men competitive. Period. Call it a niche market, call it whatever, but pretty much every new dinghy that comes out is targeted for 80kg guys, not designed for big dudes. For the most part we don't say anything since there's obviously a big market for the majority of the world that's smaller than us, but when the inevitable "I outgrew my Laser, now what?" threads start, and guys start chiming in that "I weigh 230 and I'm just as competitive in my Laser as I was when I was 17", I call bullshit. Sure, you've got more experience getting starts and picking your shifts, but you're getting passed in light air, you're getting passed in medium air, and you're getting passed downwind by guys who weigh what the boat is designed for by the simple fact that you're displacing more water and your wetted surface is greater-you're going to be slower to plane, you're going to be slower coming out of a tack, you're going to be slower changing gears, and you're doing everyone a disservice who might benefit in being in a boat designed for a bigger crew weight-which given current demographic shifts is going to become a bigger portion of the market every year.

Obviously we get mad when we keep going up to the chopping block every Quad at the Olympics-there are hundreds of young guys in Lasers or 420s right now who will grow into "Finn-size" within this quad and want to keep sailing at the Olympic level. Given recent decisions by World Sailing it's become clear that they don't want anybody greater than 85kg sailing at the Olympics, and everyone who has put their education or their careers on hold and spent a great deal of time and money getting into boats, training, and going to regattas has flushed that down the drain.

We're here, we've been at the party for longer than pretty much everyone else. If you weigh more than 90kg and you want to race singlehanded, we're pretty much the only game in town. The OK is still around as the poor man's Finn but doesn't do nearly as good a job and the class is pretty much nonexistant in the Americas. The VX Evo is a distant third, and even they're nerfing their boats with reduced-area mainsails and adding keels so 150lb guys can hang on long enough to finish a race. You can throw some wildcards in like Contenders or whatever weird esoteric pond boats they have in the UK but as far as international competition in singlehanded one design monohulls goes, you can kick and scream all you like but until a new designer and builder starts doing something new, we're still going.

 

I think one thing you have to remember in all of this is to calibrate the discussion.  I don't think that the OP was about going Olympic, it was more about a single handed boat for a big guy who has trouble with a low boom.  I get what you're saying about big guys, as I am one, at 6'3" and over 90kg but at the same time I have little to no trouble staying at the pointy end of our fleet of Lasers in light air, but that's due to experience relative to our fleet, as I mentioned before.  Sure I will have trouble at major regattas but that's not what this thread is about.  It's about getting out on the water in a comfortable boat that suits the needs of George.  

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2 hours ago, GeorgeT415 said:

Hi Alan, 

Here I am checking back in, I'm currently considering the finn and IC (perhaps the straight board A-Cat) and will have to wait until the virus is over to go on a test sail but am currently favouring the IC, as to joining as a crew for a 505 or the like, I simply can't make that commitment to a helm due to my attendance of a full time boarding school, so I can only sail during the holidays on my own or the local club on the two open weekends i get a term.

Also if I do decide to take the IC route does anyone know of any plans / kits (excluding machetes as I know of these already) that I could use, I already have some building experience and a kit or set of designs should be a good way to build myself a IC

You can't go wrong with either boat (of course very different kinds of sailing IC versus Finn ) and crewing on a 505 sounds like a great idea. Having a first hand look and sail of both is a good approach.

I would recommend, before committing to building an IC to find a used Nethercott which can be purchased at a great price. Learn to sail this boat and if you're still hooked then think about building a new IC. 

Good luck and thanks for checking in!

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1 hour ago, WCB said:

I think one thing you have to remember in all of this is to calibrate the discussion.  I don't think that the OP was about going Olympic, it was more about a single handed boat for a big guy who has trouble with a low boom.  I get what you're saying about big guys, as I am one, at 6'3" and over 90kg but at the same time I have little to no trouble staying at the pointy end of our fleet of Lasers in light air, but that's due to experience relative to our fleet, as I mentioned before.  Sure I will have trouble at major regattas but that's not what this thread is about.  It's about getting out on the water in a comfortable boat that suits the needs of George.  

This was in response to Euro bloke’s post. I know there are a lot of Finns in the UK, they’re seaworthy and they’re designed for big guys-if it doesn’t work for George there are other good suggestions in here. 

 

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Surf Nazi:

Did you miss the part where I said I liked Finns and had built about 150 of them?  At one point my company was the epicenter of the Finn universe,  and  it was quite fun.  Then Luka and Larry decided they wanted a slice of the 30 boat a year market and the Atlanta Organizing Committee expected us to provide the fleet for free. ( Every previous Olympic Committee had bought the fleet outright) and we couldn’t afford to do that.  So our goose was cooked.

Luca lead with passion, and managed to not only not fuck it up, but build a slightly better boat. The Vanguard Finn was kind of stale,  I had ideas of how to improve it, but there wasn’t much incentive. 98% of our Finn  business was European, and Luca had lots of boats to flog after the Games, so no one asked for the new boat. Gus Miller stopped coming around.

So I have done enough swimming keeping the Finns nose above water to know her quite well.  It’s a fine boat and a interesting group of people who have made the class vital and given more than their share back to the sport.  If you asked me, the Finn is the only Olympic Class. The Star might be one, but racing a Star is almost exactly like racing a Finn so why bother. Also, the Finn started life as a sailing canoe ( Swedish B Class I think) that lost its pointy stern in a road accident, so it has that going for it as well.

So call me brain damaged, but you threw stone 1 and I foolishly returned the favor. I really don’t give a shit. I’m 67 years old and building what might be my 30th IC.  It is quite different than the first one and it certainly isn’t a business.  They are swell little sailing machines that have inspired my imagination  for close to 50 years and I am still thinking about ways to do things better or differently.  You may think this stupid, but I think it’s actually a recommendation.  On a summer afternoon, I would chose my IC over a fleet of 30 Finns.  I am lucky to be able to make that choice.

SHC

 

SHC

 

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Sailing in a big fleet is one kind of fun

Sailing in a boat that is inherently fun, itself, is another.

I've generally found boats that form big fleets have several things about them that really don't appeal to me. Maybe I'm weird. But I've gotten more and more reward of sailing for it's sake, and socializing with people who sail other kinds of boats.

FB- Doug

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6 hours ago, onepointfivethumbs said:

This was in response to Euro bloke’s post. I know there are a lot of Finns in the UK, they’re seaworthy and they’re designed for big guys-if it doesn’t work for George there are other good suggestions in here. 

 

I missed Euro Bloke's post...thanks for the clarification

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On 4/14/2020 at 6:15 PM, Steve Clark said:

Surf Nazi:

so call me brain damaged, but you threw stone 1 and I foolishly returned the favor. I really don’t give a shit. I’m 67 years old and building what might be my 30th IC.  It is quite different than the first one and it certainly isn’t a business.  They are swell little sailing machines that have inspired my imagination  for close to 50 years and I am still thinking about ways to do things better or differently.  You may think this stupid, but I think it’s actually a recommendation.  On a summer afternoon, I would chose my IC over a fleet of 30 Finns.  I am lucky to be able to make that choice.

SHC

 

SHC

 

SHC, 

 I did not throw the first stone. You said sailing a finn is like driving nails with your hand. I responded to that. Your post proves my point. If you want to tinker and work on your boat,get an IC. Plenty of people really like the tinkering aspect and I get it. It's not for me. I like to sail in any conditions and I like a large international class of like-minded folks, so finn for me. 

Best of luck

SN

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I know I should stop......

What is wrong with driving nails with your hand?

Many Olympic sports are just about that stupid and painful, but Gold Medals are awarded!

We are putting together the Iron Fist Federation and are seeking inclusion in Paris as a Demonstration event.

Regulations and by-laws need to  be revised to IOC standards, but the work is in hand.

There is also talk of a fully sponsored televised Grand Prix circuit with the best men and women athletes competing for cash prizes.

International rankings are being developed as we speak.

Its going to be a big big thing.

Start training now so you can participate in this exciting new sport with like minded people.

If 50 people are bleeding it’s much more rewarding than using a tool.

Remember the OP? He had trouble getting under a Laser boom.  I suggested the IC because the rig is such that you don’t go under the boom, you go around behind it.  This is unique in my understanding, and that was my point.  There is a good group of Canoe sailors at Hayling Island, close to where he is located.  As Dave pointed out, Nethercotts are dirt cheap, you get carbon masts and beautifully built stiff boats for pennies on the pound. The fact that the boats are still the fastest monohull singlehander ( the Moth is a Hydrofoil and in a different class) is gravy.

I will admit that the dig at the Finn was slightly gratuitous, but I was telling that exact joke 20 years ago, and the Finn guys all thought it was pretty funny.  They weren’t so thin skinned.   We all know that sailing a Finn is damn hard work if you are going to compete at all.  With the removal of Rule 42 in heavy air, even the runs are enormously athletic. No one works that hard to go that slow without a sense of humor.  We called rowing, going backwards in pain.  The only good part is that you see the people you are beating, and you know if you feel this bad, they feel worse. It’s one thing to drown in lactic acid, but to drown in lactic acid and lose sucks so much more.

SHC

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2 hours ago, Steve Clark said:

. It’s one thing to drown in lactic acid, but to drown in lactic acid and lose sucks so much more.

 

+_b5d9bca4d0bb49e5f4b681cfb7e4940e.png

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I weight 100 to 110 kags. I crew 505 and have for some decades on and off (I own one--there are quite a lot of big crews who own the boats). When I was pushing 50 Dave put me on Willy's canoe (I think) to try it out and I was hooked. I have a Nethercott and I have a lot more practice to do. But I've sailed in the regattas and I can go behind the boom which is great. Just remember that the batten ends will steal your sunglasses and your hats and Steve says something like, "only buy cheap sunglasses."

If the OP is 16 he will learn to sail anything. He will learn to sail the canoe faster than I did. At my first regatta, it was my first real sail, I had to get out from Ft Adams under the bridge to Potter's. I had a few capsizing fits, then had to beach at Jamestown to fix a recalcitrant halliard (my rigging fault). But I made it to the course and sailed the course. Is it more difficult than rigging and sailing a laser in the same wind? Yes. But to learn it and do it is so worth it. When you get out on the board in Long Island Sound and find the wind is climbing to the high teens and the waves building and you have a 2 mile reach home, WATCH OUT! Your cheeck muscles will be sore from grinning.  When you are at a regatta and you are all sailing out to the course, and Dave and Willy and Mike and Chris are virtually dancing out to the ends of their boards, and back in shifty winds, tacking effortlessly, and you are in that fleet, and you see the beauty of being one with a boat like that, and what can be done with practice, it is without words really.

I raced the laser from age 12 through 25. I have fond memories of that time. But the canoe was on my mind the whole time. Between Marchaj's book and his "canoe-finn dinghy" theoretical boat and the Uffa books, the imagination tends to run wild with the canoe.

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Supernova is not a bad call . Lots of larger gentlemen sail  them , they carry weight well and they have a highish boom. One thing to consider is because they are self draining you will spend a lot of time on your knees .

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We had a couple of Supernova's at our club, sailed by people that felt they were a Laser for older less agile gentlemen! Thing is those sailors have now moved into Solo's, as they seem to have come back in vogue at our club, with quite a nice fleet emerging. Funny how old design slow boats never died, as long as you can build a fleet nobody is bothered about going fast.

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4 minutes ago, Martin T said:

We had a couple of Supernova's at our club, sailed by people that felt they were a Laser for older less agile gentlemen! Thing is those sailors have now moved into Solo's, as they seem to have come back in vogue at our club, with quite a nice fleet emerging. Funny how old design slow boats never died, as long as you can build a fleet nobody is bothered about going fast.

I agree 100%.  Most fun I've had is racing Stars, Thistles, J/22's, Sonars, and as a kid Sunfish.  None of those are particularly fast boats.  But the fleet was competitive, and the people I was sailing with were fun.  Heck a few years back there was no Thistle racing at our club and myself and a few buddies jumped in Sunfish and went out in a breeze and just screwed with each other team race style.  Trading boats, and having a blast.  Very few of us actually like that boat, but we still talk about how much fun that day was and how we need to do it again.

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I just came upon this thread, so I apologize for being late to the party.

I've been sailing Finns for about 17 years now, I'm on my second one, I'm a past Finn class president, blah, blah, blah.  I will say that while I sail other boats as well, my Finn is the only boat that I truly miss when I'm not sailing it, and now, with all this Covid stay at home bullshit, my boat's languishing in my garage.

But to the people that say that Finns are just dinosaurs?  Damned right!  I think one of the fun of owning these stupid, painful, esoteric little boats is that they're just dinosaurs that are painfully slow.  But we love the banter, we love the Finn sailor jokes, and, as one friend states at some of our regattas, Finn sailors are the Harley Davidson bikers of sailing.  This isn't my boat pictures, mine's a Larry boat.  But looking at the picture?  How could you not say that these are just beautiful little boats.

Beautiful Finn picture.JPG

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3 hours ago, View from the back said:

I just came upon this thread, so I apologize for being late to the party.

I've been sailing Finns for about 17 years now, I'm on my second one, I'm a past Finn class president, blah, blah, blah.  I will say that while I sail other boats as well, my Finn is the only boat that I truly miss when I'm not sailing it, and now, with all this Covid stay at home bullshit, my boat's languishing in my garage.

But to the people that say that Finns are just dinosaurs?  Damned right!  I think one of the fun of owning these stupid, painful, esoteric little boats is that they're just dinosaurs that are painfully slow.  But we love the banter, we love the Finn sailor jokes, and, as one friend states at some of our regattas, Finn sailors are the Harley Davidson bikers of sailing.  This isn't my boat pictures, mine's a Larry boat.  But looking at the picture?  How could you not say that these are just beautiful little boats.

Beautiful Finn picture.JPG

A long time ago at the bar after Saturday's racing at a star regatta (in Milford) I was sitting with my skip, and some of the other star guys--some of whom were in the Olympic circuit. Conversation turned to sailing in San Francisco Bay in some OCR. "We can always find the way up the beat by following the tornado flotsam" and the other one was from the tornado's perspective, referring to the finns: "we pass the finns and they are all hiking hard upwind, we round the windward mark, the gybe mark, the leeward mark, and there they are, still sailing up the same beat." Like driving a nail by hand, haha.

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The Finn is a great boat and a great class - and should still be in the Olympics. Shame. It's like taking the heavyweight class out of boxing. But the IC is by far and away the most fun boat I ever sailed. And mine was set up simply and virtually indestructible - very low maintenance.  Sail an IC a few times and any other boat feels like a dock. I traded with a Laser sailor one day after I had been out of Lasers for a little while and thought the hull was full of water. One of these days I will get back into an IC... Sigh.

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7 hours ago, View from the back said:

This isn't my boat pictured, mine's a Larry boat.  But looking at the picture?  How could you not say that these are just beautiful little boats.

Beautiful Finn picture.JPG

That is a larry boat (well an Andy boat). Supposed to be clear teal deck but there are some swirls and bubbles in it. That hull won the 2019 Nationals in Sarasota.

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12 hours ago, fastyacht said:

A long time ago at the bar after Saturday's racing at a star regatta (in Milford) I was sitting with my skip, and some of the other star guys--some of whom were in the Olympic circuit. Conversation turned to sailing in San Francisco Bay in some OCR. "We can always find the way up the beat by following the tornado flotsam" and the other one was from the tornado's perspective, referring to the finns: "we pass the finns and they are all hiking hard upwind, we round the windward mark, the gybe mark, the leeward mark, and there they are, still sailing up the same beat." Like driving a nail by hand, haha.

HAHAHA!!! I've been part of this, in that exact situation.  When I was a kid racing Sunfish on a bay of Lake Ontario, one of the guys our club was campaigning a Tornado for an Olympic campaign.  Every year we had a for fun race around the bay where they'd do a staggered start.  Sunfish would start, then 5 minutes later Lasers, then 5 min later..... till finally the Thistles started 35 minutes after the Sunfish.  The tornado wanted to race.  So they (not knowing when to start him to make it fair) started him 5 minutes after the Thistles.  All I can remember is being around 13 years old in my sunfish, rounding the windward mark, and seeing this tornado with the guys mom (who I had never seen or met prior) out on the trap and just a mist coming off the transom of the 1 haul that was in the water as they FLEW by me.  They went on to win (obviously) by going around the entire course 3 times when the rest of us went around it twice.  That was one of the most memorable things of my young (at that point) sailing careers.  Seeing that 300 year old woman (now that I know her well I know she's NOT 300, and actually a MUCH better sailer then I am, and in WAY better shape) out on the trap, carelessly FLYING by me was one of the most AWESOME and demoralizing things I've seen on the water.

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On 4/17/2020 at 11:40 PM, onepointfivethumbs said:

That is a larry boat (well an Andy boat). Supposed to be clear teal deck but there are some swirls and bubbles in it. That hull won the 2019 Nationals in Sarasota.

1.5 Thumbs, you're right, looking at this, I think this is D's old boat!  He was always wanting to trade that boat plus cash for my Lemieux.  That boat of D's is butt ugly, but damn, he could sure make it go go go!

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So the obvious question: if you are mobility challenged and somewhat larger why sail a dingy at all

Look at a displacement boat, where you have more room, your ballast is a feature not a handicap and you can race as competitively as you choose to fund after you get out of school.

There are a plethora of small keelboats, some can be singlehanded easily others let you take a buddy or a date out... 

like this http://www.solings.co.uk/solings-for-sale-in-the-uk/

 

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On 4/16/2020 at 7:38 PM, Steve Clark said:

 

I will admit that the dig at the Finn was slightly gratuitous, but I was telling that exact joke 20 years ago, and the Finn guys all thought it was pretty funny.  They weren’t so thin skinned.   We all know that sailing a Finn is damn hard work if you are going to compete at all.  With the removal of Rule 42 in heavy air, even the runs are enormously athletic. No one works that hard to go that slow without a sense of humor.  We called rowing, going backwards in pain.  The only good part is that you see the people you are beating, and you know if you feel this bad, they feel worse. It’s one thing to drown in lactic acid, but to drown in lactic acid and lose sucks so much more.

SHC

The difference is that 20 years ago you told the joke in person to a small group of finn sailors . If you said the same to me in the bar after sailing, totally cool. I'm not thin skinned but when you print your "joke" and distribute it around the world to people who don't know finns, it's different. 

I love my finn, you love your IC's, it's all good. 

 

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37 minutes ago, surf nazi said:

The difference is that 20 years ago you told the joke in person to a small group of finn sailors . If you said the same to me in the bar after sailing, totally cool. I'm not thin skinned but when you print your "joke" and distribute it around the world to people who don't know finns, it's different. 

I love my finn, you love your IC's, it's all good. 

 

This is a really good point.  I think there's a point of pride sometimes with how hard our boats can be on us.  And honestly, we need to tone down the talk about that when talking to new people.  I race thistles mainly, and I've often said that we need to stop as a fleet joking when we meet new potential crew about "if they bruise easily."   I've joked for a while that I wanted to make a teeshirt that says, "you don't know pain until you've sat on the toilet after a windy thistle regatta."  All that stuff is in good fun with a group of thistle sailors, however there's no telling how many people we've kept out of our boats by joking like that.  Some that would have legitimately enjoyed it, and done well.  If the Finn is anything like the thistle (which if they cancel our Nationals this year I'll be buying a Finn.  That was the deal with the wife...) It is uncomfortable when you first start, and hard work.  But the work is half of what makes it rewarding, and the pain goes away the more you sail it.  I've told a bunch of people that one of my favorite things about the thistle is that it rewards you for ACTUALLY sailing the thing.  Our thin rails have probably kept more fly-by's out.  If you only race it 1 or 2 events a year, those events will suck!  IF you sail it all the time, and race them frequently, I can honestly tell you, my legs don't hurt hiking off that 4 inch rail.  I've been more uncomfortable hiking off the side of a sonar with that metal drip rail giving me a crease across my butt.

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18 hours ago, LionessRacing said:

So the obvious question: if you are mobility challenged and somewhat larger why sail a dingy at all

Look at a displacement boat, where you have more room, your ballast is a feature not a handicap and you can race as competitively as you choose to fund after you get out of school.

There are a plethora of small keelboats, some can be singlehanded easily others let you take a buddy or a date out... 

like this http://www.solings.co.uk/solings-for-sale-in-the-uk/

 

Because keels are for people who have already given up?

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10 hours ago, Sneaky Duck said:

This is a really good point.  I think there's a point of pride sometimes with how hard our boats can be on us.  And honestly, we need to tone down the talk about that when talking to new people.  I race thistles mainly, and I've often said that we need to stop as a fleet joking when we meet new potential crew about "if they bruise easily."   I've joked for a while that I wanted to make a teeshirt that says, "you don't know pain until you've sat on the toilet after a windy thistle regatta."  All that stuff is in good fun with a group of thistle sailors, however there's no telling how many people we've kept out of our boats by joking like that.  Some that would have legitimately enjoyed it, and done well.  If the Finn is anything like the thistle (which if they cancel our Nationals this year I'll be buying a Finn.  That was the deal with the wife...) It is uncomfortable when you first start, and hard work.  But the work is half of what makes it rewarding, and the pain goes away the more you sail it.  I've told a bunch of people that one of my favorite things about the thistle is that it rewards you for ACTUALLY sailing the thing.  Our thin rails have probably kept more fly-by's out.  If you only race it 1 or 2 events a year, those events will suck!  IF you sail it all the time, and race them frequently, I can honestly tell you, my legs don't hurt hiking off that 4 inch rail.  I've been more uncomfortable hiking off the side of a sonar with that metal drip rail giving me a crease across my butt.

And shorts with boning in them.

Thistle is a great fun boat. Sort of the perfect 3 person handful that is actually tame enough that most of the time any competent sailor can go sailing but when the wind comes up a bit more she can give you something you won't get with a keelboat. If you've ever been on one with an honest 25 gusting to 30, you know what I mean (which you most certainly have). I am sure the finn shares some of that form of excitement as well.

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On 4/20/2020 at 2:23 PM, maxstaylock said:

Because keels are for people who have already given up?

by that logic, he should be buying  foiling kite... 

 

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If you ever sailed a boat that actually has ergonomics not designed by the Spanish Inquisition, you'll never go back. Close to 30 years ago, I bought a Johnson 18 to sail with my wife. Getting a third crew for our Lighting was somewhat problematic. The new boat was so comfy, full hiking, and so easy to keep control of, while planing a LOT faster, that I lost interest in boats that hurt you.

I've sailed a Thistle a bunch of times (including since then) and can honestly say, I will never again. For one thing, my knees have gotten bad enough I can't. I can sail a Buccaneer just fine but can't squat in a Sunfish, either. Fortunately my friend sold his J-24, that was the last pain box I ever spent much time on.

A couple years ago I also trialed a VX-1. That is a generation advanced above the Jn-18.

Back in the old days, you were supposed to suffer. Nowadays I don't see the point in sailing boats that make you feel like you've been beaten with a 2x4

-FB- Doug

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Letter from USA Finn Assoc this week contained the following:

104 members   (63 paid ‘20 dues so far)

89% members are Masters ages 45- older

7% are Seniors ages 24-40

less than 4% are juniors

 

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On 5/22/2020 at 1:06 PM, blunderfull said:

Letter from USA Finn Assoc this week contained the following:

104 members   (63 paid ‘20 dues so far)

89% members are Masters ages 45- older

7% are Seniors ages 24-40

less than 4% are juniors

 

So it is the Church of the Holy Finn then.

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7 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

So it is the Church of the Holy Finn then.

Gus Miller the Pope?

I’m shocked by how tame ‘Solo’ newsletter is these days.   While back (way back) I kept them out of sight.  Raunchy silliness.

 

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It was pronounced So Low

A standard that cannot be maintained in the Safe For Work marketplace.

We had a joke:

What does Finn Sailing have in common with reading Playboy?

They are both things young men do by themselves.

SHC

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‘74 Newport
 

How to adjust the travel in plate?  From what I’m seeing not adjustable while underway due to the arm between blocks slots onto tab.   Why the blocks then?

 

D04EED9A-C437-486D-9E16-F2979B6C29D1.jpeg

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Plate with mast stepped.  It would appear that to adjust on the fly you have to flip the arm up manually and use blocks to then roll plate fore/aft?

 

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