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Sunfish Worlds- Day 1- lots of equipment failures


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2 minutes ago, NYBOZO1 said:

That is what I am wondering............

 

I would think so given how sequential all of the sail numbers are

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I think they are all charter boats that will be sold off after the event.

 

Looks like the class associations concerns with the Portuguese build boats might be coming true, unless of course it’s a very high wind event .

Either way it’s a shame as these boats will be a large proportion of the new boats going into the USA market . 

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31 minutes ago, Admiral Hornblower said:

I didn't know is was possible to get redress for equipment failures, does that mean if my mast breaks in a race, and I have to retire I can get redress?

At this regatta, all of the boats are brand new boats chartered from Sunfish Direct. You are not allowed to use your own boat. In these circumstances you can claim redress if here is an equipment failure.

No, you can't claim redress if your mast breaks when sailing your own boat.

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52 minutes ago, Admiral Hornblower said:

I didn't know is was possible to get redress for equipment failures, does that mean if my mast breaks in a race, and I have to retire I can get redress?

Not necessarily. It usually has to be due to something that you didn't do. For example somebody fouled you and broke a part of your boat, or in this case boats are supplied to you and they are supposed to be at a certain minimum of preparation for the charterers. If you flip over in a regatta and bend a mast, that's your fault and you won't (or shouldn't) get redress.

I see now that @tillerman covered this but I can't delete the post

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7 hours ago, WCB said:

Are these LP supplied boats?

Yes, if that hasn't become clear by now.

Among others, problems with the traveler/bridle tearing off the deck

Boom blocks coming off

Wind was strong, gusting into the mid-twenties, but Sunfishes should be able to handle that without issues.

 

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Best I can find is that the wind was "mid to high teens with a bit more in race 1". Surely that shouldn't be boat breaking conditions for a Sunfish, never mind 12% of the fleet. Admittedly, if all the boats are supplied and built at the same time, a bad batch of parts could cause such an issue, but you would have thought that by now, they would know how to build the boats and associated parts. Parts ripping off the deck is simply bad construction.

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Redress was given in most cases, although there's RRS 62.1.

At an earlier Sunfish Worlds the connection between my tiller and extension ('universal') broke. Without a functioning tiller extension, one cannot be competitive and I had to throw in the towel.

My request for redress was rejected because, according to the Protest Committee, I was responsible for my boat, even though it was chartered (and new). They cited RRS 62.1 (b).

I was told that if another boat had caused the failure, I would be given redress. 

Confusing, isn't it?

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17 minutes ago, Wavedancer II said:

Redress was given in most cases, although there's RRS 62.1.

At an earlier Sunfish Worlds the connection between my tiller and extension ('universal') broke. Without a functioning tiller extension, one cannot be competitive and I had to throw in the towel.

My request for redress was rejected because, according to the Protest Committee, I was responsible for my boat, even though it was chartered. They cited RRS 62.1 (b).

I was told that if another boat had caused the failure, I would be given redress. 

Confusing, isn't it?

You need a better lawyer.

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Sometimes shit just happens. In 1983 at the Gulfport Chrysler Laser Worlds I stayed up all night with Ian Bruce fixing boats that were broken on the first practice day. Those boats were 113001 to 113080 and Ian had built most of the previous ones. 
    In this case, the Sunfish were built by folks who essentially just started building sailboats. 
   Building simple sailboats really isn’t all that simple. 
     It totally sucks for the competitors who worked their butts off to qualify, have spent thou$and$ to get there,  who  will be spending more $$$ at the venue all week, and spending more $$$ to get home. 
 

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7 hours ago, Wavedancer II said:

Redress was given in most cases, although there's RRS 62.1. At an earlier Sunfish Worlds the connection between my tiller and extension ('universal') broke. Without a functioning tiller extension, one cannot be competitive and I had to throw in the towel.

My request for redress was rejected because, according to the Protest Committee, I was responsible for my boat, even though it was chartered (and new). They cited RRS 62.1 (b).

It depends who is responsible for the chartering. If, as at ILCA major championships, the chartering is organised by the event's organising authority, under RRS 62.1(a) the failure of chartered equipment to perform under normal conditions can be held to be 'an omission of the . . . . organising authority'. (If the above protest committee cited RRS 62.1(b) they would have been incorrect unless another boat was involved.) A sailor chartering a boat at a championship should have every reason to expect that their boat is seaworthy and will cope with normal racing conditions. (A similar claim after gear failure in a race in Force 7 winds would be unlikely to succeed.) If the boat has been chartered independently there are no grounds for redress, but if the boat has been sourced from a private owner by the organising authority, the OA still has the responsibility to ensure the boat is fit for purpose.

Some failures happen without any warning: mast failure can be amusing to onlookers precisely because they usually occur suddenly, without warning signs. Conversely, a worn tiller UJ may have show indications of likely failure before the race, in which case a request for redress might not succeed if there has been opportunity for preventative maintenance. And, of course, if it's your tiller used on a charter boat, any failure is your fault.

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Great news for ROCKET! You cannot buy publicity like this at any price. Hard to overcome the critical mass of Sunfish ( when trying to introduce a new version of the original concept ) but people must be wondering what kind of junk is available as a brand new Sunfish. Let me see - ROCKET ia a better boat, better build, better price. Am I missing anything? 

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11 minutes ago, rcbrds said:

Boy how times have changed.  When I had 18023 it was said: "when you run into the dock with a sunfish, you look to see what you did to the dock".

 

I sailed a Sunfish for many years in all sorts of conditions including several Sunfish Worlds. The only breakage I can recall was to the plastic rudder "cheeks." It was a tough little beast.

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2 hours ago, Metoxi said:

If this level of crap build quality continues it will damage the Sunfish class. Maybe their class association could take control over who builds the boats. :rolleyes:

They have a very similar thread going already, not sure if you've heard of it.  It's called, "ILCA gives LPE the boot..."  It's a similar problem, builder issues that are damaging the class. At some point the class has to fight to stay alive. Even given the unfortunate renaming of the class in my opinion, I'm glad that the ILCA did what they did because things are now looking better than ever but it was grim there for a while. The Sunfish class needs to consider what's happening too.

Ooh...ooh...I see it now 

Laser/ILCA is to RS Aero 

as Sunfish is to the Rocket 

 

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3 hours ago, rcbrds said:

Boy how times have changed.  When I had 18023 it was said: "when you run into the dock with a sunfish, you look to see what you did to the dock".

 

we bought a '69 sunfish for too much this year. It would still destroy a dock.

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20 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

 In this case, the Sunfish were built by folks who essentially just started building sailboats. 

How long has LP bee the Sunfish builder? That's a pretty poor excuse. Yes, they have moved to a new factory and have new staff, but they should have experienced management to ensure that staff know what they are doing. Surely they still have their quality control procedures in place. When you bring in new, inexperienced staff, you keep an eye on them. In addition, it's not like these boats were the very first from the factory either.

Yes, building small boats isn't simple, but make all the excuses you like, senior management should know what they are doing and should ensure this sort of thing doesn't happen. The occasional mistake/problem is to be expected, but having faults in 12% of the boats built is not acceptable.

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3 hours ago, SimonN said:

but they should have experienced management

 

3 hours ago, fastyacht said:

hahaha, Hahaha, HAHAHA!

Yes, it's funny but you missed the key thing I said, that they should have experienced management and not that they do have experienced management. 

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44 minutes ago, SimonN said:

 

Yes, it's funny but you missed the key thing I said, that they should have experienced management and not that they do have experienced management. 

Nah, I didn't miss that. LOL the whole business is famous for management "problems." The beautiful thing is that some people rise to the challenge and really do in fact show growth and skill as technical managers of a dynamic product in the toy market. When that happens,beautiful things happen.

Dysfunctional management in yacht building is in fact a widespread endemic problem. There is a peculiar aspect to this--"hey, I always wanted to own a boat shop" (not coming from a legitimate commitment but rather from a pile of cash from some other business venture.) The motorboat market is FULL of this sort of thing, and there is plenty of it in sailboats, too. Being an actual technical expert in this environment can be an eyerolling and bite your tongue experience. I think pretty much everyone can tell stories.

And on the other hand, even the true greats who were in fact fully committed (and commitable) to the art and craft and life of boats, are often larger than life with reputations. Let's see: Everett, Bob Derecktor, Buddy Davis come to mind, oh And John Cherubini. And Hobie Alter. Plenty to add to the list. These people are as much a part if the story--on the good story but with some quirks (some more than others). There were definitely differences in management "style" among them! Some were terrifying at times. We have some very impressive people doing really exciting things right now here in the U.S. Pretty obvious who I am especially referring to.

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1 hour ago, fastyacht said:

Nah, I didn't miss that. LOL the whole business is famous for management "problems." The beautiful thing is that some people rise to the challenge and really do in fact show growth and skill as technical managers of a dynamic product in the toy market. When that happens,beautiful things happen.

Dysfunctional management in yacht building is in fact a widespread endemic problem. There is a peculiar aspect to this--"hey, I always wanted to own a boat shop" (not coming from a legitimate commitment but rather from a pile of cash from some other business venture.) The motorboat market is FULL of this sort of thing, and there is plenty of it in sailboats, too. Being an actual technical expert in this environment can be an eyerolling and bite your tongue experience. I think pretty much everyone can tell stories.

And on the other hand, even the true greats who were in fact fully committed (and commitable) to the art and craft and life of boats, are often larger than life with reputations. Let's see: Everett, Bob Derecktor, Buddy Davis come to mind, oh And John Cherubini. And Hobie Alter. Plenty to add to the list. These people are as much a part if the story--on the good story but with some quirks (some more than others). There were definitely differences in management "style" among them! Some were terrifying at times. We have some very impressive people doing really exciting things right now here in the U.S. Pretty obvious who I am especially referring to.

I learned quite a bit about the industry working for Vanguard and then Waterline Systems but I learned the most, and fast, when I tried my own boat building business. One interesting skill was the ability to spot the bullshit earlier on. Before I would go along with it too long.

That said, I am working on a new powerboat company with some friends. Sucker for punishment. 

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19 hours ago, SimonN said:

How long has LP bee the Sunfish builder? That's a pretty poor excuse. Yes, they have moved to a new factory and have new staff, but they should have experienced management to ensure that staff know what they are doing. Surely they still have their quality control procedures in place. When you bring in new, inexperienced staff, you keep an eye on them. In addition, it's not like these boats were the very first from the factory either.

Yes, building small boats isn't simple, but make all the excuses you like, senior management should know what they are doing and should ensure this sort of thing doesn't happen. The occasional mistake/problem is to be expected, but having faults in 12% of the boats built is not acceptable.

I believe 'fish production stayed in the SLI facility in Rhode Island for several years after the LP buyout.  The Rhode Island facility was shut down what, ten years ago or so?  Since then I guess production has bounced around to several countries.  Were the built for a time in the UK?

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19 hours ago, SimonN said:

Surely they still have their quality control procedures in place.

When I was an engineer on a production floor, we used to joke that our ISO 9000/9001 compliance only meant that our quality management documentation was in order, not that we were producing a quality product.

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26 minutes ago, torrid said:

I believe 'fish production stayed in the SLI facility in Rhode Island for several years after the LP buyout.  The Rhode Island facility was shut down what, ten years ago or so?  Since then I guess production has bounced around to several countries.  Were the built for a time in the UK?

Not sure . It was rumoured to be build in the uk for a short time but none of my normal contacts have ever confirmed it.

It was definitely built in China for quite a few years after they closed the USA plant . 

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34 minutes ago, RedTuna said:

When I was an engineer on a production floor, we used to joke that our ISO 9000/9001 compliance only meant that our quality management documentation was in order, not that we were producing a quality product.

Did you have a Six Sigma Black Belt?

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1 hour ago, Xeon said:

Not sure . It was rumoured to be build in the uk for a short time but none of my normal contacts have ever confirmed it.

 

In November 2019, LP published some photos in various forums of them building Sunfish in the UK.
788949753_sunfishUK01.thumb.jpeg.670ce9e5088bd555d94c2c5c4ead88ed.jpeg

105900271_sunfishUK04.thumb.jpeg.19ec4e777b3241b2323f11dbe2171f5c.jpeg

In August 2021, my2fish a Sunfish blog, published a photo and report about Sunfish production by LP in Portugal for shipping to the USA, crediting the Windward Leg, the Sunfish class newsletter as the source.

2098836716_lportugal.thumb.jpeg.c563bc358b29f32705d17381bec70312.jpeg


These photos are clearly not of the same place. I am inclined to believe that the first two above are of the old UK factory and the third one is of the new Portuguese one.

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1 hour ago, tillerman said:

In November 2019, LP published some photos in various forums of them building Sunfish in the UK.
788949753_sunfishUK01.thumb.jpeg.670ce9e5088bd555d94c2c5c4ead88ed.jpeg

105900271_sunfishUK04.thumb.jpeg.19ec4e777b3241b2323f11dbe2171f5c.jpeg

In August 2021, my2fish a Sunfish blog, published a photo and report about Sunfish production by LP in Portugal for shipping to the USA, crediting the Windward Leg, the Sunfish class newsletter as the source.

2098836716_lportugal.thumb.jpeg.c563bc358b29f32705d17381bec70312.jpeg


These photos are clearly not of the same place. I am inclined to believe that the first two above are of the old UK factory and the third one is of the new Portuguese one.

Cheers for that. At least when they were made by old guys at long Buckley in the uk they were made by old guys that had 30 years experience building lasers in Banbury . 
 

As Gouv said, building simple boats is NOT simple .

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On 10/26/2021 at 5:51 PM, Admiral Hornblower said:

I didn't know is was possible to get redress for equipment failures, does that mean if my mast breaks in a race, and I have to retire I can get redress?

You can get a redress if it was something you couldn't predict. If you have a pin come out that obviously is very loose it wont be redressed. 

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On 10/28/2021 at 7:02 PM, RedTuna said:

When I was an engineer on a production floor, we used to joke that our ISO 9000/9001 compliance only meant that our quality management documentation was in order, not that we were producing a quality product.

Thing is, in the context of ISO etc "Quality" is a technical term that means much closer to consistency. If the manual says the mainsheet blocks should be attached to the boom by a soft unanodised aluminium pop rivet in an oversize hole, then so long as all the blocks  are attached like that its just fine. If some of them are installed properly instead then that would be an issue.

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On 10/27/2021 at 5:58 AM, xonk1 said:

Great news for ROCKET! You cannot buy publicity like this at any price. Hard to overcome the critical mass of Sunfish ( when trying to introduce a new version of the original concept ) but people must be wondering what kind of junk is available as a brand new Sunfish. Let me see - ROCKET ia a better boat, better build, better price. Am I missing anything? 

Remind me again how many "used" Sunfishes are out there?  Maybe at the World competition level, but for the average every day Joe looking for some cheap fun for a local pond.. couple of photos of an angry Quaker inventor on some green paper will get you going.

Two brand new hulls for $500

https://ventura.craigslist.org/boa/d/woodland-hills-sunfish-sailboat/7374361410.html

 

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15 hours ago, JimC said:

Thing is, in the context of ISO etc "Quality" is a technical term that means much closer to consistency. If the manual says the mainsheet blocks should be attached to the boom by a soft unanodised aluminium pop rivet in an oversize hole, then so long as all the blocks  are attached like that its just fine. If some of them are installed properly instead then that would be an issue.

Part of the joke was that we liked Juran's definition of quality - fitness for use with respect to design, conformance, availability, safety, and use.  But I understand where you're coming from.  We had processes in tight statistical control.

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31 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

Those two sunfis hare different in details.

IS one a minfish OR just different epochs?

The Sunfish has undergone numerous design changes over the years, including some significant  changes to the hull.

https://www.sunfishklasse.nl/documenten/Sunfish Timeline.pdf

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I just have to say that the Sunfish production WAS truly sorted out. 

There was plenty of things about the Sunfish to find fault with, but the way the product moved trough the plant wasn’t one of them.  Alcort in Waterbury Ct had built thousands, and had it truly sorted out. The only problem was that the ‘fish couldn’t support all the stupid ideas AMF and other conglomerates came up with. At Vanguard, the Sunfish was the most efficient line we had. The labor standard ( 11 hours in the hull) was impressively low and we met or surpassed it regularly. Optimist took twice as long to build.  The company did better the more Sunfish and Lasers we built, so much so that we were always tempted to shit can everything else. Any thoughts of “ improving” the Sunfish ran into this wall of reality, it was the best product we owned. Not the best boat, the best product.  

Laser Performance failed to understand this. They managed to forget or chose to ignore the knowledge imbedded in the Sunfish line and have tripped over their feet at every turn.   Many things look easy to people who haven’t done them.

SHC

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On 10/27/2021 at 11:27 AM, rcbrds said:

Boy how times have changed.  When I had 18023 it was said: "when you run into the dock with a sunfish, you look to see what you did to the dock".

 

Have you ever seen the damage a sunfish double handed by two ten year olds can do to an optimist?  I still have ptsd from those memories. 
 

On the plus side the “ramming prow” will tend to go straight through the side of an opti. Instead of large areas of cracked fiberglass you just get a hole

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7 hours ago, Ventucky Red said:

Remind me again how many "used" Sunfishes are out there?  Maybe at the World competition level, but for the average every day Joe looking for some cheap fun for a local pond.. couple of photos of an angry Quaker inventor on some green paper will get you going.

Two brand new hulls for $500

https://ventura.craigslist.org/boa/d/woodland-hills-sunfish-sailboat/7374361410.html

 

Many years ago there was an article saying that 250,000 Sunfish have been built so who knows the official number but it's got to be close to 275,000 by now.

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3 hours ago, Steve Clark said:

I just have to say that the Sunfish production WAS truly sorted out. 

There was plenty of things about the Sunfish to find fault with, but the way the product moved trough the plant wasn’t one of them.  Alcort in Waterbury Ct had built thousands, and had it truly sorted out. The only problem was that the ‘fish couldn’t support all the stupid ideas AMF and other conglomerates came up with. At Vanguard, the Sunfish was the most efficient line we had. The labor standard ( 11 hours in the hull) was impressively low and we met or surpassed it regularly. Optimist took twice as long to build.  The company did better the more Sunfish and Lasers we built, so much so that we were always tempted to shit can everything else. Any thoughts of “ improving” the Sunfish ran into this wall of reality, it was the best product we owned. Not the best boat, the best product.  

Laser Performance failed to understand this. They managed to forget or chose to ignore the knowledge imbedded in the Sunfish line and have tripped over their feet at every turn.   Many things look easy to people who haven’t done them.

SHC

I worked for you for a short time in '99 or so and I loved watching the Sunfish and Laser get built. I enjoyed walking into the production line from time to time just to watch the staff do their thing, sniff some styrene, and enjoy watching new boats get rigged. It was an efficient machine.

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On 10/27/2021 at 1:06 PM, Metoxi said:

If this level of crap build quality continues it will damage the Sunfish class. Maybe their class association could take control over who builds the boats. :rolleyes:

The Class Assoc wishes it were that easy.  Unlike the ILCA, the ISCA does not own the rights to the Sunfish - their "friends" at Laser Performance do.  So they just cannot find another builder, which is obviously a big and unfortunate problem.

LP made good boats in the US for a couple years after they bought Vanguard.  I know that 2014 boats were US-produced, and maybe 2015 also.  They then decided they could reduce costs and start making the boats in China.  There was at least a year when they didn't make any Sunfish as they could not get things started up in China.  I think that was 2016.  Then of course they decided to move to Portugal.  The theory is a handful of boats were made in the UK, but the thinking is that most were still made in China, albeit with GB shown as the country of origin on the hull ID.

LP is perhaps the only company I have ever encountered that appears to actively try to destroy the user bases of its products.  My view is they have been trying to kill Sunfish with no or bad boats for 5-6 years (and by overseeing a replacement parts shortage for several years prior to that), but the Sunfish just won't die easily.  By the time the Worlds ended, there were 23 requests for redress, and most were approved.  I also know that for whatever reason several people that broke down did not apply for redress.   Considering LP made good-quality Sunfish in the US for several years after buying Vanguard, it is pretty sad that they best they can do out of Portugal is a ~25% breakdown rate.

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8 hours ago, Steve Clark said:

I just have to say that the Sunfish production WAS truly sorted out. 

There was plenty of things about the Sunfish to find fault with, but the way the product moved trough the plant wasn’t one of them.  Alcort in Waterbury Ct had built thousands, and had it truly sorted out. The only problem was that the ‘fish couldn’t support all the stupid ideas AMF and other conglomerates came up with. At Vanguard, the Sunfish was the most efficient line we had. The labor standard ( 11 hours in the hull) was impressively low and we met or surpassed it regularly. Optimist took twice as long to build.  The company did better the more Sunfish and Lasers we built, so much so that we were always tempted to shit can everything else. Any thoughts of “ improving” the Sunfish ran into this wall of reality, it was the best product we owned. Not the best boat, the best product.  

Laser Performance failed to understand this. They managed to forget or chose to ignore the knowledge imbedded in the Sunfish line and have tripped over their feet at every turn.   Many things look easy to people who haven’t done them.

SHC

Sunfish Laser was an established reliable cash generator. The fools who bought the company didn’t even take advantage of the deal they had with Chip  to stick around for a year. Something tells me they didn’t keep any of the senior guys around in the plant either

 

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9 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

Sunfish Laser was an established reliable cash generator. The fools who bought the company didn’t even take advantage of the deal they had with Chip  to stick around for a year. Something tells me they didn’t keep any of the senior guys around in the plant either

 

They did the same when they took over LPE in Banbury UK . I used to know someone who was a manager at the plant who was sacked when they took over .

He started his own boat repair business, which was very successful. But after a few years most of his time was taken up by working as a consultant to LPE helping them with their quality problems .

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You'd think that after over 250k boats, this kind of stuff wouldn't happen anymore.

 

All I can say is that if I bought a new boat from any company and had stuff falling apart in the first race... Unless that race took place in extreme conditions, I'd be having a pretty intense conversation with the manufacturer.

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2 hours ago, Wavedancer II said:

Five more requests for redress due to equipment failure on the last day of racing.

 

PS: I hate to be in the shoes of the owner of Sunfish Direct. This company bought all the boats and is selling them. 

I would hate to be in the shoes of anybody who has put down a deposit to buy one of those 2021 Sunfish Worlds boats from Sunfish Direct. 

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12 hours ago, Wavedancer II said:

Five more requests for redress due to equipment failure on the last day of racing.

 

PS: I hate to be in the shoes of the owner of Sunfish Direct. This company bought all the boats and is selling them. 

The word from Sarasota is that 60 of the boats were sold and picked up on site, and the remaining 40 are being shipped to their new owners. Even after the carnage, there was a wait list to buy one of them in case there were cancellations.  

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8 hours ago, Wavedancer II said:

Lee and Will are so nice and charitable towards the boat manufacturer...

They don’t really have a choice . It’s LP way or no way at all . The bottom line is LP can build anything they want and call it a Sunfish and the Class Association could break away BUT they COULD NOT build anything that looks like a sunfish. The class is between a rock and a hard place. 
 

It’s what happens if a single manufacturer owns all the design right to a class. It this situation some manufacturers want to take the class associations views on board , others do not.

A large well known manufacturer in the uk has a history of doing the latter .

 

1) They built new moulds for one of their clssses, the new boats didn’t measure so the company just changed the measurement rules .

2) With other class, they decide to change the construction method and reduce the weight by 25kg . ( I am not saying this  decision was wrong as they now have over 100 new style boats at their nationals . ) 

 

In both cases the class associations could have voted against the changes but all that would have happened is the class would have been orphaned with no way of building new boats . 

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