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Hansen Aerosports

Laser Turbo Testing

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We've been continuing the testing here in SF Bay of the Laser Turbo 'Chop Top' squarehead sail. Reported earlier were some test results from the Cal Sailing Club and Corpus Christi, TX. The Turbo made it's debut at the StFYC in the Laser Thursday evening club racing 2 weeks ago with good results by several sailors in 15-20 knot winds. Today (again at the StFYC) during the Laser Slalom event (following the NA's) several experienced Laser sailors got their chance at the Turbo with some impressive off-the-wind rides. Winds according to the iWindsurf chart found here << http://www.iwindsurf.com/windandwhere.iws?...&siteID=214 >> were in the 20-gusting-to-30 range. More testing is expected tomorrow as other Laser sailors are lining up to give it a go. Many Thanks! to West Coast Sailing for contributing a brand new test boat and rig (now slightly tweaked from the strong conditions.) Here are some admittedly poor pics of Evan (sp??) who weighs in around 185 lbs doing an impressive job in typical mid-summer SF Bay conditions.

More to come as reports are filed.

Thanks for looking...

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Lasers just got interesting...that looks good. :DB)

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That looks great! Are you using a standard aluminium rig?

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Yes, std class-legal rig - no additions or changes.

A tapered carbon upper mast section would be a big (but not without cost) improvement.

 

That looks great! Are you using a standard aluminium rig?

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Very cool. It looks so much better than the Rooster 8.1 rig in the UK. That rig is targeted at the heavier sailor (90kgs+). Who is this aimed at?

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Anyone with a Laser looking for more excitement and easier handling than the std dacron triangle provides. The sail is bigger (a lot bigger) so the boat powers up more quickly and stays powered up longer. The full battens and low stretch matrials provide a stable shape. Heavier sailors will certainly find it more interesting...

 

Very cool. It looks so much better than the Rooster 8.1 rig in the UK. That rig is targeted at the heavier sailor (90kgs+). Who is this aimed at?

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I expect that sail will hold it's shape after 3 regattas?

The sail will be good but the boat will have gone soft

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I love it. Best part is it appears to be no more than a sail to upgrade your fun. I look forward to hearing more.

 

Carbon

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North American Demo schedule is as follows:

 

Daily at Cal Sailing Club in Berkeley, CA (They have 2) Every day, any day.

Tomorrow at StFYC in San Francisco before/during/after the Laser Slalom event. Contact Patrick at West Coast Sailing or Bill or Jane at Hansen Sails.

August 2-3, Portland, OR. Contact West Coast Sailing - George or Patrick

Monday, August 4th & 11th Laser sailing at Willamette Sailing Club, Portland, OR (Contact West Coast Sailing - George or Patrick)

August 5-13 Open demos available. Contact West Coast Sailing - George or Patrick or Bill or Jane at Hansen Sails

August 14th Cascade Locks, OR Columbia River Laser Blowout. Charter it and be first overall. Open bidding now in place... Contact Bill at Hansen Sails

August 15th-17th Cascade Locks, OR - Laser Masters & Moth US Nationals Contact Bill at Hansen Sails

 

International demos are in process - contact Jane at info@hansensails.com

 

Or, simply order one and join the fun on your own Golden Pond...

 

It is FUN, if anyone wants to try one let me know, in SFbay

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You uhh... you comin to the east coast perchance?????????

 

 

yeah yeah, what he said......

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North American Demo schedule is as follows:

 

Daily at Cal Sailing Club in Berkeley, CA (They have 2) Every day, any day.

Tomorrow at StFYC in San Francisco before/during/after the Laser Slalom event. Contact Patrick at West Coast Sailing or Bill or Jane at Hansen Sails.

August 2-3, Portland, OR. Contact West Coast Sailing - George or Patrick

Monday, August 4th & 11th Laser sailing at Willamette Sailing Club, Portland, OR (Contact West Coast Sailing - George or Patrick)

August 5-13 Open demos available. Contact West Coast Sailing - George or Patrick or Bill or Jane at Hansen Sails

August 14th Cascade Locks, OR Columbia River Laser Blowout. Charter it and be first overall. Open bidding now in place... Contact Bill at Hansen Sails

August 15th-17th Cascade Locks, OR - Laser Masters & Moth US Nationals Contact Bill at Hansen Sails

 

International demos are in process - contact Jane at info@hansensails.com

 

Or, simply order one and join the fun on your own Golden Pond...

 

How much Bill?

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We will consider demos on the east coast (and elsewhere) given a proper venue and sufficient audience. Interested parties should contact us with your proposal. Email to info@hansensails.com.

Thanks!

 

We are working on pricing and dealer/distribution at the moment with a goal of value-added 'bang for the buck.' The sail is 120 sq-ft making it about 58% larger than the std sail and of higher quality Dimension-Polyant technical laminates. As such, the retail price would be in the $700-$900 range when accounting for the size increase and a cost/sq-ft equivalent to the std class-legal dacron sail.

 

You uhh... you comin to the east coast perchance?????????

 

yeah yeah, what he said......

 

How much Bill?

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We are working on pricing and dealer/distribution at the moment with a goal of value-added 'bang for the buck.' The sail is 120 sq-ft making it about 58% larger than the std sail and of higher quality Dimension-Polyant technical laminates. As such, the retail price would be in the $700-$900 range when accounting for the size increase and a cost/sq-ft equivalent to the std class-legal dacron sail.

 

That price works when compared to the class legal sail but...

 

Given that this sail would not be class legal (and not subject to the same multi level profit markups that the class legal sail goes thru) it seems quite high when compared to the $200 pricing of the current non class legal sails... Sounds more like it is priced to what the market will bear as opposed to a a goal of value-added 'bang for the buck.'

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That price works when compared to the class legal sail but...

 

Given that this sail would not be class legal (and not subject to the same multi level profit markups that the class legal sail goes thru) it seems quite high when compared to the $200 pricing of the current non class legal sails... Sounds more like it is priced to what the market will bear as opposed to a a goal of value-added 'bang for the buck.'

 

Jesus, let the guy make a few bucks here. It's not like he's Bill Gates charging $400 for a couple .50 cent CDs and a $1.50 manual in a shrink wrapped box that you get to "license", and not own. Hansen Aerosports is not Microsoft, and this guy has risked a lot of R&D time and some of his profits trying to come up with this product. If he sells a thousand units, then start your whinging about prices.

 

The price is not ridiculous, considering what the sail should be able to do for the hull. I don't know why people are willing to get screwed by some vendors and then unwilling to let North American small business make a profit. Maybe if Hansen sends the product to China, eliminates his skilled work force and R&D and then charges your $250.00 you'll be happy.

 

I hate price whinging when aimed at little vendors trying to sell innovative products, especially when their prices are not out of proportion for the benefit delivered. I'm just as cheap (or cheaper) than the next guy, but I target my cheapness at those that are overcharging for their products. Profitable, innovative small service-based businesses are critical to sailing in North America.

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Jesus, let the guy make a few bucks here. It's not like he's Bill Gates charging $400 for a couple .50 cent CDs and a $1.50 manual in a shrink wrapped box that you get to "license", and not own. Hansen Aerosports is not Microsoft, and this guy has risked a lot of R&D time and some of his profits trying to come up with this product. If he sells a thousand units, then start your whinging about prices.

 

The price is not ridiculous, considering what the sail should be able to do for the hull. I don't know why people are willing to get screwed by some vendors and then unwilling to let North American small business make a profit. Maybe if Hansen sends the product to China, eliminates his skilled work force and R&D and then charges your $250.00 you'll be happy.

 

I hate price whinging when aimed at little vendors trying to sell innovative products, especially when their prices are not out of proportion for the benefit delivered. I'm just as cheap (or cheaper) than the next guy, but I target my cheapness at those that are overcharging for their products. Profitable, innovative small service-based businesses are critical to sailing in North America.

 

"Price-whinging!!" That's brilliant!

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At the price, the sail should be a deal. I'll bet you'll get two to three years out of the sail compared to the regatta or two for the class legal sail. I've not seen the after market sail in action so I can't say the difference there but at $200 it can't be too comparable. I've got mylar sails on my Swift and after six seasons, they still look good. A little wear on the bolt rope on the main but other than that, they still look good. My old Laser sail looked like totak crap at the end of one summer. At $500 per year for a laser sail, I'd have spent about twice what I did for the full set of sails for a Swift. Now where's the bang for your buck?

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I'm interested in this. But I am worried about the Mast Step Life.

That is my concern more than how much the sail costs or how long it will last. If it were my Laser, I'm sure it would have torn the mast step out in the first test on SF Bay. If this gets popular, you'll probably see clauses in the warranty where it will be voided if you use this sail. You'll probably go through spars like hot cakes if you are a heavyweight too.

 

All that being said, it sure looks like a fun option.

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I'm interested in this. But I am worried about the Mast Step Life.

You can still only hike so hard

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With %58 more rag to it I'd be more worried about my hiking knees & muscles. Sounds like a blast. Lets see when DL slaps on a foil or two and calls it his People's Boats. Oh wait that was Borat. Can't tell them apart sometimes.

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I suppose someone looking for a $200 dacron replica Laser sail might not want to invest in a Turbo. No idea what the market will bear. Just trying to be realistic about providing a quality, innovative product at a fair price. If you compare to a Byte or Megabyte sail (58 & 100sq-ft) you will find my projected price substantially lower per sq-ft. Same for most any other small boat sails like a Lido 14, etc. In any case, it has been a fun project...

 

That price works when compared to the class legal sail but...

 

Given that this sail would not be class legal (and not subject to the same multi level profit markups that the class legal sail goes thru) it seems quite high when compared to the $200 pricing of the current non class legal sails... Sounds more like it is priced to what the market will bear as opposed to a a goal of value-added 'bang for the buck.'

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With %58 more rag to it I'd be more worried about my hiking knees & muscles. Sounds like a blast. Lets see when DL slaps on a foil or two and calls it his People's Boats. Oh wait that was Borat. Can't tell them apart sometimes.

I have found that the turbo sail can be depowered very easily. Then downwind is a blast.

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The mast step doesn't know how big or what type of sail is being used. It only 'sees' the righting moment applied and that is strictly a function of sailor weight and hiking prowess. I'll be happy to add a couple webbing loops on the upper sleeve for a simple trapeze if anyone is interested. Then the rig will be supported and the mast step spared - at least from side-loading torque. Not a part of our development to date but a definite possibility...

 

I'm interested in this. But I am worried about the Mast Step Life.

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It's more complicated than that. The mast step sees heeling loads that you mention, driving loads downwind, and torque from the mainsheet upwind. The torque from the mainsheet probably doesn't change from the standard rig and neither do the heeling loads. Downwind, the torque on the step increases if the CE is elevated or the sail area is increased. Anybody break a mast or mast step downwind or do these failures just happen upwind?

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It's more complicated than that. The mast step sees heeling loads that you mention, driving loads downwind, and torque from the mainsheet upwind. The torque from the mainsheet probably doesn't change from the standard rig and neither do the heeling loads. Downwind, the torque on the step increases if the CE is elevated or the sail area is increased. Anybody break a mast or mast step downwind or do these failures just happen upwind?

 

 

I think most or alot of the mast failures on the Laser are downwind. Almost all the failures I have seen have been upper's for most part. I snapped a lower off at the vang tang due to corrosion & operator error not to mention serious honking wind.

 

With the upgraded Vang/kicker, cunningham and outhaul ratios 15:1, 10:1 and 6:1. Laserites are now able to really crank on some serious tension when depowering upwind. I think these tensions have a major part to play in the breakage of spars on the Laser. If the Laser sailor forgets to relieve those tensions before turning weather mark and taking off on his merry way to the leeward mark. I'd love to here some of the other anarchists thoughts on mast failures. Hijack over :P

Fishingmickey

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Hey Hansen,

I would be interested in possibly trying one of those ya described with the extra loops for trap lines. It looks like a damn nice sail for the Laser...

Fishingmickey

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Most of the failures I've seen have been at the topmark bearing off or capsizing, especially death rolls at speed.

 

Adding a trap would put a large compression load on the mast and mast step. I have no idea how it would respond but probably would be ok. The force due to the cunningham can already be quite large. Where a trap would most likely cause problems is that anyone trapezing off the back of the boat is going to put a huge load on the topsection, especially when the kicker is also on.

 

I'd have been quite interested in this and wish I hadn't sold my laser last year, but it was gathering dust and the money was well spent. I figured I could just pick up another one whenever I go back. I'd like more information when it finally comes out. Might be the first person in Ireland with one. Full rigs are too small for me.

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pointless, lasers capsize in 12 knots of breeze as it is, oh and they're expensive as it is, but waitttt let's put unecessary strain on our $7,000 boat so we'll have to buy another in a year to remain competitive in regattas.

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Most of the failures I've seen have been at the topmark bearing off or capsizing, especially death rolls at speed.

 

Adding a trap would put a large compression load on the mast and mast step. I have no idea how it would respond but probably would be ok. The force due to the cunningham can already be quite large. Where a trap would most likely cause problems is that anyone trapezing off the back of the boat is going to put a huge load on the topsection, especially when the kicker is also on.

 

I'd have been quite interested in this and wish I hadn't sold my laser last year, but it was gathering dust and the money was well spent. I figured I could just pick up another one whenever I go back. I'd like more information when it finally comes out. Might be the first person in Ireland with one. Full rigs are too small for me.

 

Bill, you sent me a PM about the new sail this week. I intend to get one on order very soon. Can't wait to try it and I'll be planing Anarchy style in New England! Why would you put it on your $7000 boat? This sail is not class legal and given the politics in the laser class, it probably never will be. I'll be throwng down on my POS old laser and having a blast. If I break the boat, then I'll get another one, and another............

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pointless, lasers capsize in 12 knots of breeze as it is, oh and they're expensive as it is, but waitttt let's put unecessary strain on our $7,000 boat so we'll have to buy another in a year to remain competitive in regattas.

you cap laser in 12 kts, you must be like me. :blink:

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Good comments - both on the plus and minus side. Thanks!

We've been fairly diligent with the beta testing over the last 15 months in both light and heavy conditions with skilled and unskilled sailors of all sizes. So far, not many boat/rig problems but they are certainly possible in strong conditions with heavy, aggressive sailors. My thought is the Laser is typically sailed in marginal to moderate conditions and that is where the Turbo provides a faster and more exciting ride. Basically, the design and testing is mostly completed and the production is organized. I'm working now to keep the price around US$ 7-800 which makes it a viable alternative for those who aren't dedicated class-legal regatta types. At least until a Turbo class develops... ;)

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Trapezing on a Laser would be a fricking nightmare!

 

Carbon spars next- if you're going to step out of the class you may as well do it without breaking spars a couple of k's offshore.

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I didn't realise that a normal Laser sail only lasted one regatta in strong-wind area. A guy I know tells me that he can't tell that a sail is starting to get slow until it's done 50 races.

 

If he knew that he should change sails more often, maybe he would have won more than his six world Masters titles, and maybe when he beats the US Olympic contenders he'd be able to have a more comfortable margin.

 

Many of the Laser sailors on the net must have mantlepieces groaning under the weight of their cubes, if they are good enough to need new sails every few races.

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I didn't realise that a normal Laser sail only lasted one regatta in strong-wind area. A guy I know tells me that he can't tell that a sail is starting to get slow until it's done 50 races.

 

If he knew that he should change sails more often, maybe he would have won more than his six world Masters titles, and maybe when he beats the US Olympic contenders he'd be able to have a more comfortable margin.

 

Many of the Laser sailors on the net must have mantlepieces groaning under the weight of their cubes, if they are good enough to need new sails every few races.

 

Chris

 

Amen brotha! I was thinking the same thing and I just hadn't gotten around to writing it. All this talk of a 3 regatta sail is such complete bull and it gets so old. I had a 2005 Laser that I bought new and it still has the same sail with the new owner and it looks fine. The vast majority of the sailors get in their own way of winning far more often than the sails will ever slow them down.

 

My take on this new sail is this. Make sure there's enough margin in it to make some money and that's it, don't price it relative to the class sails. Intensity prices their sails to make money relative to the man hours to cut and sew it and the materials involved, do the same. This sail looks like a lot of fun and as a bigger Laser sailor myself, I'd be interested. But this sail is a novelty item and convincing myself I need to spend $800 for a novelty sail vs. $500 for a class sail isn't likely to fly with myself or my wife. If they were both $500, then I might buy both or god forbid, have my Laser sail last a whole other year or two.

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Love it or hate it, one thing is for sure, that thing looks bad ass.

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Bill,

There's something that occurred to me this evening. That rig sounds great and would suit me but I've noticed down this way that the radial fleet has experienced a lot of growth relative to the full rig fleet.

 

It's a badass rig and I'm curious to see how fast it is over the course. It's a step above the full rig. I can't help but think that there might actually be more interest in a similar sail that uses the radial bottom section. It's more flexible and it would change the upgrade path from 4.7>radial>full>hansen to 4.7>radial>hansen and/or full rig.

 

A lot of the teenagers growing out of radials now might be very tempted by a newer, faster, higher-tech rig. You could have something that's like a radial upwind but faster than a full rig downwind. Should be a wider weightrange. 58% bigger than a full rig is a lot of extra sail area and a lot of extra cost. I don't know the economics so well but the price might be a fair bit closer to a full rig sail (but existing radial sailors mightn't need to buy a bottom section).

 

Looked like it was moving well beside that drifting radial in the picture above. Any word on whether it's faster than a Rooster 8.1? I presume so given the 11.1 m^2 (118 sq.ft) sail area.

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Love it or hate it, one thing is for sure, that thing looks bad ass.

Well, not if you hate it.

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Ronk:

That is an interesting suggestion. At this point it would be fairly easy to do since we have a handle on the basic design. I would rather work directly with the Laser class on that type of project but perhaps the Cal Sailing Club or another club will have an interest. I'm also looking at a carbon tip section to get a better flex, range and durability. Regarding the Rooster 8.1, I have no idea but the merits of a fully battened 'chop top' planform are pretty well established.

 

Bill,

There's something that occurred to me this evening. That rig sounds great and would suit me but I've noticed down this way that the radial fleet has experienced a lot of growth relative to the full rig fleet.

 

It's a badass rig and I'm curious to see how fast it is over the course. It's a step above the full rig. I can't help but think that there might actually be more interest in a similar sail that uses the radial bottom section. It's more flexible and it would change the upgrade path from 4.7>radial>full>hansen to 4.7>radial>hansen and/or full rig.

 

A lot of the teenagers growing out of radials now might be very tempted by a newer, faster, higher-tech rig. You could have something that's like a radial upwind but faster than a full rig downwind. Should be a wider weightrange. 58% bigger than a full rig is a lot of extra sail area and a lot of extra cost. I don't know the economics so well but the price might be a fair bit closer to a full rig sail (but existing radial sailors mightn't need to buy a bottom section).

 

Looked like it was moving well beside that drifting radial in the picture above. Any word on whether it's faster than a Rooster 8.1? I presume so given the 11.1 m^2 (118 sq.ft) sail area.

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That is my concern more than how much the sail costs or how long it will last. If it were my Laser, I'm sure it would have torn the mast step out in the first test on SF Bay. If this gets popular, you'll probably see clauses in the warranty where it will be voided if you use this sail. You'll probably go through spars like hot cakes if you are a heavyweight too.

 

All that being said, it sure looks like a fun option.

 

I have been on a (older) Laser which had the mast step blow out. Not a fun experience.

 

 

But please don't think I'm giving a negative. The only negative I see is when people repair the boat. It's not too difficult to repair the mast step. The problem is that it adds 5-10 pounds of material to the boat. And it probably comes out much stronger.

 

 

However, given the reputation for extreme competitiveness of Laser people, and usually how large of douchebags they are (please ignore my name, and the inherent irony), I don't think that anyone who really tries to race their laser will touch this with a 10 foot pole (mast, ZING!). At least, not on their main boat.

 

Another but, if this came out and was relatively cheap, I'd probably pick up an oldy to play with it myself.

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I'd be surprised if Laser are anything other than hostile to this idea. The mere fact that there are cheaper "training sails" all over the place is kinda a giveaway that they're willing to leverage their brand and strength to extract maximum revenue.

 

There are many important issues that a prospective buyer considers: price, ease of sailing, longevity, fun, rigging etc. but ultimately the big question is how fast the boat goes. I know it's early days but how much faster this rig is will be critical. The Rooster 8.1 has a PN (sorry, that's what I think in) of 1051 compared to the Finn @ 1066 and the Laser @ 1078 (Radial 1101 and 4.7 1175). If the turbo isn't getting around the race-course faster than that it's not going to get many converts (Laser II is 1035, that'd be a nice number to be near, if it doesn't involve too many other compromises). That is unless it's pitched at making radial or even 4.7 sailors faster. Actually, with 120 sq.ft compared to 87

(both approx.) on the Rooster 8.1 you'd want to be faster up and down the course. Not that sail area alone means all that much.

 

My personal opinion (for what it's worth) is that a trapeze is a waste of time. People would be better off in a whole different boat and it will lower the weight range way down. Too many other compromises. You'd need to promise planing upwind to even get people interested. Even by adding a whole new skill it drops out of the upgrade path for existing laser sailors.

 

btw: thanks for your response.

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years ago i bought and old m rig shitter for crashing around the waitemata and for the hell of it a buddy and I popped a Q class rig on it complete with twin wires......mast step was a bit of fun, basically bridged from gunwhale to gunwhale with a short intermediate strut/ packer on to the top of the laser mast step and deck stepped the rig on this stays to the gunwhales were fixed to U bolts with pipe under found the rudder was a weakpoint as in too small, perhaps the gear was better built then but this nasty contraption was a right hoot in a 20 knot southwester and held together until women entered out lives seriously....

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Answers to a few of the later comments:

 

No camber inducers - we made a very nice and expensive sail with a wide sleeve and cams but it was not enough better than the current model to merit them. You can review some older topics on this forum last year for pics of that sail.

 

Serious Laser regatta racing sailors probably aren't interested in the Turbo. But, the non-racers with an old Laser sitting around probably are.

 

Regarding relative speed, there are a lot of variables. Probably the most important ones are wind velocity and sailor weight and whether the boat is powered up or not with the std rig. The Turbo excels in powered-up broad reaching and in lighter winds. We'll have it at the Laser Master's in Cascade Locks next week and perhaps can get some GPS readings.

 

We do have a contact in Europe who is interested in showing one around. Not sure when or if.

 

We'll have them in production soon at a good price so the idea it will be out of the question $$ wise is settled. We are shooting for somewhere around $649-$699 plus shipping from west coast US. Interested sailors can email info@hansensails.com to place an order.

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Great that this is going forward!

The sail looks good.

Corresponded with Mr. Hansen about it last winter, and still strongly considering it for a different project of mine (or for my old laser).

If I don't use it it will only be out of fear (a desire to reef easily).

 

To the poster who asked about speed:

Normal lasers can hit about 18-20 knots in a burst, but are easy to crash.

The hull can be a handfull in strong wind, especially offwind.

It's not really made for that, which means it takes skill. So it can be fun, but you might break stuff.

A bigger/better sail should make it easier to keep higher average speeds, but more goes into it.

Anyway, you can see how the laser with the turbo sail looks faster than the normal ones in picture above....

It would be great to see comparative gps tracks, up and down wind....

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