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Can a flying dutchman be a tame ride?


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I got a ride on a Flying Dutchman once, it was really fun.  Could it be tamed down so it would be a boat to take the wife (not an adrenaline junky) out for a sail on the local mountain lake?  Or would a Lightning or other boat be a better choice to be able to sail hard and take out the wife or friends for a pleasant sail?

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Ditch the genoa and buy a non-overlapping jib and it will most likely be a nicer boat in every respect. 

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1 hour ago, Excitable Boy said:

I got a ride on a Flying Dutchman once, it was really fun.  Could it be tamed down so it would be a boat to take the wife (not an adrenaline junky) out for a sail on the local mountain lake?  Or would a Lightning or other boat be a better choice to be able to sail hard and take out the wife or friends for a pleasant sail?

It could be a great choice for that; two problems. One, they're hard to find. Two, the genoa makes it a bit of a handful, hard to see where you're going, takes muscle to trim. The good news about the genoa is that you can just roll it up.

The Dutchman and the Lightning are both low-sided and wet, but the Dutchman is a bit lighter and easier to handle around beaches and docks. A bit more comfortable / ergonomic for the crew, my wife found Lightnings to be be lacking in knee room and the combination of the low boom and a wire vang were distressing. However the Lightning has a ballasted (steel plate) centerboard which gives it a lot of reserve stability. The Dutchman will flip right over like a 420 or FJ (in fact, "FJ" stands for "Flying Junior" which originally was "Flying Dutchman Junior" designed by the same guy as a smaller/cheaper/tamer boat).

Everything is a trade-off

FB- Doug

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23 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

It could be a great choice for that; two problems. One, they're hard to find. Two, the genoa makes it a bit of a handful, hard to see where you're going, takes muscle to trim. The good news about the genoa is that you can just roll it up.

I have been pretty much quarantined for months now, ready for a road trip if I find the right boat.  I traveled 5000 miles for my last boat purchase.  About the genoa, can it be adjusted or just furled in or all the way out?  I think my mountain lakes have some plenty of breezy afternoons.

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9 minutes ago, Excitable Boy said:

I have been pretty much quarantined for months now, ready for a road trip if I find the right boat.  I traveled 5000 miles for my last boat purchase.  About the genoa, can it be adjusted or just furled in or all the way out?  I think my mountain lakes have some plenty of breezy afternoons.

Jackson Lake? That's a beautiful place to sail, been up there a couple of times. Cold water! There was an eclectic group of boats at the marina including an E-scow.

The genoa can be rolled up all the way, in or out. It can also be reefed by rolling it up part-way, but that tends to make the boat sail less well.

FB- Doug

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22 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

Jackson Lake? That's a beautiful place to sail, been up there a couple of times. Cold water!

Yep it is cold and the season is short, even shorter this year.

 

I have a boat in dry storage on Bear Lake Utah and a buoy on Jackson Lake took me 4 years to get.

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34 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

Jackson Lake? That's a beautiful place to sail, been up there a couple of times. Cold water! There was an eclectic group of boats at the marina including an E-scow.

The genoa can be rolled up all the way, in or out. It can also be reefed by rolling it up part-way, but that tends to make the boat sail less well.

FB- Doug

Lots o e scows used to be around on the mountain lakes.  Grand lake still has a fleet I think.  Brilliant for up here.  

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Since the centerboard can be raised partially, thereby angling it aft under the mainsail, a smaller jib, or even no jib, balances just fine. A good used jib from another class' jib can be picked up at a used sail outfit.

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After sailing Windmills, classic Moths and Suicides, my Lindsay Flying Dutchman seemed very stable. "Scow with a bow" shape.

Only capsized once, in a thunderstorm when the rudder came off from hitting something. Oh, and once as crew when Paul Hempker pulled the wrong control line and pulled the center board down instead of up in an increased wind. Shows that board up a ways does help!

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On 7/8/2020 at 10:48 AM, Excitable Boy said:

I got a ride on a Flying Dutchman once, it was really fun.  Could it be tamed down so it would be a boat to take the wife (not an adrenaline junky) out for a sail on the local mountain lake?  Or would a Lightning or other boat be a better choice to be able to sail hard and take out the wife or friends for a pleasant sail?

sometime around 1990, we took all the fancy rigging off a Plastrend Dutchman And made ourselves a simple fast daysailor.

Except.... It wasnt quite there 

the big Genoa was still a beast to trim

we still needed the trapeze 

 

Our opinion was, we could get small sails and sail it with novice sailor girlfriends in winds up to about 12

or

we couid blast around ourselves in big winds until the boat turned to mush 
 

we blasted around .

All the fancy rigging is great for racing and getting that last smidgeon of tuning.

for teaching around trying to just start lane snd have fun, the super simple  rigging was fantastic 

he was about 165 and 6’4”

I was about 189 and 5’10’

there were times when we simply weren’t big enough to go full speed 

 

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Some 30 years ago i was in charge of the "blue water cruiser" of my sailing school in Corsica (a 27 Ft plywood hardchine boat with 6 berths and no loo but a lot of jibs and a big spinnaker...spartan but very sturdy) and i was circling Isola d'Elba (next to Italy Mainland) and i was very surprised to see an elderly italian couple (both well over 70) sailing an immaculate Bianchi FD ( GRP/Kevlar hull and gorgeous varnished deck plusd pajot style double spinnaker chute     around the isand , from beach to litle harbour and next to another beach.

I spoke with them a bit but my italian was not so good as it is now apparently they did this sort of dinghy cruising every year on a diferent spot of the italian coast (carefuly avoiding anything over Force 3 Bft) and had a short jib to replace the big genoa in case the wind was too hard (the genoa was on a furler)....so yes the FD can be a perfectly tame ride under force 3/4 (just like the unruly mischievious Hobie 16 or the 505)....This is not true of more modern skiffs like the Laser 5K or the beastly 49'er ...in those you are either standing up or trapezing, nowhere to sit and relax  and if you are not fuly fit the boat dictates it's own law on the crew after the 4th or 5th capsize.

Going back to Corsica we were crossing the Elba Channel , going to Macinaggio in Corsica ,in a succesion of  squalls and thunderstorms plus some turbulent and irregular  northerly Genoan tramontana (2 reefs in the maisail and a fairly small jib)and we saw three italian dare-devils making the same crossing (more or less illegaly , wel off the 3 miles limit)with an olympic Tornado cat on which they had fitted no less than three trapeze wires....of course they zoomed past us and away at some 25 Kts (we were making a bare seven with a fully grown bow wave and big wiskers of spray).

Their mast seemed to be badly flexed but they pressed on regardless and when we reached Corsica we did not find any dramatic sea rescue in the local newspaper so i assume they made Corsica safely...so there are more than one way of using a light dinghy / cat for coastal cruising.

 

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The FD is very tame everything happens slowly.

We use a 505 jib on the furler and use it as a comfy fast camping cruiser.

Lots of room for gear, high boom, sails great with just the mainsail.

Screenshot_20200710-212230.png

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Looks good. Seems like a good platform for the job.

Worth noting that the genoa overlap has near enough no effect on balance at all, because its smack on the centre of effort.

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Using a smaller jib should do a great job. The 'furler' is only that - it will not allow you to 'reef' the jib to a smaller size. If you fit a smaller/non-overlapping jib, look into new sheeting positions inboard of the shrouds. On the stock jib, because the shrouds are outboard, the sail shape is very flat in the front half, only curving at the shrouds. A "normal" shape" is fuller forwards and cannot point as high. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hate to throw another boat into the mix but would a CL16/Wayfarer be suitable? I have a CL16 and have no trouble keeping it flat when the GF and a couple friends are out but you can have a lot of fun with it too when the wind picks it up.

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1 hour ago, tannerri said:

Hate to throw another boat into the mix but would a CL16/Wayfarer be suitable? I have a CL16 and have no trouble keeping it flat when the GF and a couple friends are out but you can have a lot of fun with it too when the wind picks it up.

I'd agree with that, a good boat for a couple,  can be sailed and planed, both singled and double handed.

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On 7/26/2020 at 7:20 AM, tannerri said:

Hate to throw another boat into the mix but would a CL16/Wayfarer be suitable? I have a CL16 and have no trouble keeping it flat when the GF and a couple friends are out but you can have a lot of fun with it too when the wind picks it up.

Will look at one.

 

Seems like the FD could work though.  I just saw a video of one that really struck a chord.  Will look for vids of the CL 16.

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On 7/8/2020 at 11:06 AM, fastyacht said:

Yhe FD is tame.

Very stble.

Only in bug wind is it a handful.

Fast,

     I'll have to look for my seastory here about when Carl Eichenlaub decided to start competing in the Flying Dutchman class, Lowell North asked him where his floatation tanks were.

     I will tell it again if I can't find the original. 

Rasp

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2 hours ago, Excitable Boy said:

Will look at one.

 

Seems like the FD could work though.  I just saw a video of one that really struck a chord.  Will look for vids of the CL 16.

Looks like the CLs reside mostly in Canada.  No chance of seeing one any day soon, borders being closed and all.

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  • 3 weeks later...

CB position does help the boat point when sailing with main only.  Conversely, the big jib will act like a lever and fight you if you do not move your centerboard in building winds with the genoa.  We have found our two FDs docile in light to medium airs if necessary.  But controlling the genoa or eliminating it is essential.  We have not sailed with a smaller jib but because of CB mobility, I would think that pointing would not be too much of an issue.  

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