Brian Bennett's VX from the FP

jh26

Member
181
0
Georgia
This summer a Viper will be modified into a non-hiking configuration.

Much like an M20.

There will also be some other owner requested mods. Sort of a Granpa Viper.
What a curious project. Thinking about adding building a much heavier keel? Will it be top-hung same as the Viper keel - much more weight would be stressing that design I would think, not to mention the rest of the keel box. Still, it will be an interesting exercise to see.

 

superg

Member
193
11
The bulb keel is less than half the weight of the K6's, yet the VX has more sail area up and down. One wonders if a 135 lb bulb is enough to be self-righting.

 

Viper640.org

Member
168
0
Wait and see we will... the market will decide, that's the way it works.

There's is always a back story, and there are enough details out there for anyone who wants to dig them up and draw what conclusion you may. I don't feel the need to comment on any of that.

The VX looks interesting, sure is a lightweight! Should be fun to sail, I want try one, but I'll stick to the Viper fleets and regattas that are growing like weeds all over the USA, thank you.
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Brian is a good bloke, he currently has my Viper in his shop to clean up the lifting and travel wear on its keel. Obviously no hard feelings between he and I.

Kumbaya!
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Brian Bennett

New member
42
1
Automatic
Hopefully some answers for everybody here.

If you have not seen the site up, please take a look at www.vxonedesignracing.com. Yes, there will be tweeks and mods. We want people to sail the prototype to death so that we can build the best possible solution.

Firstly, The VX has been in the works for about 3 years now. It is not being done because of any issues with the Viper class. I have many friends that are avid Viperers, but at some point you move on. I was willing to put my $ and effort behind the Viper, but the class was not really interested in my proposals to production engineer the boat..... fair enough. In some respects, a turning point, and an opportunity to put the energy elsewhere. If Viper sailors need help with their hardware they are welcome to my shop. I am willing to help with the technical issues of building Vipers if asked by the class.

I have considered for some time that the Viper was just a little too big a boat. While you can get 4 in a container, they get damaged easily, and the economy of shipping multiple boats really requires that you can get as many boats into containers as possible. It is all about containing costs within a box and servicing your customers well really. If you want to get lots of folks sailing fun boats you need to be able to get the boat to them (anywhere on the planet) for the most reasonable cost. The Viper is doing well, but does not reach the lighter crew weight market (this being the age of specialization). The VX should do a good job of this.

To Schooners comments.

The VX is wider on the WL and lighter than the K6. The K6 gets a substantial amount of RM from the keel. The VX from crew weight. The VX is powered in similar ratios to the Viper. There is a reason for this in that it works effectively. Also the heavier a boat is, the more it is likely to cost.

To really have an effective contribution to the sailing world (and I am not talking about 20' sports boats), you need to be able to bring it to the market at a sensible price, and be able to delver it and service the market efficiently. The VX should attract those coming from the lighter end of the crew weight spectrum, and does not conflict with the Viper which was designed for 560lbs of crew weight. (the VX being 380- 420 lbs optimum).

While there is a lot of product in the 20 - 24' sportboat market, there has been little development in the affordable 18-19' performance dinghy range. Boats like Flying Scots, Lighnings, Thistles etc, all have strong followings, are great classes, but are somewhat dated, and not always inspiring to young sailors that we would like to keep in our sport. Many (most) simply cannot afford a Viper, a Melges 20 or a Shaw (and I love all these boats for their virtues).

It is interesting to note here that some feel that you can line your pockets in this industry. Most of us do this because we love what we sell/ build etc. I have never made big $ in the boatbuilding business, and I have been in in for 25 years now. My hope is that the VX provides a vehicle to keep our young sailors interested, and our mature sailors coming back. Myself, Rodger and Ross are good friends. we are blokes of modest means, who love what we do. We compliment each other, and Ross is an outstanding design engineer. John Clinton at Southern Spars is a good friend, and very talented yachtie/ Sailmaker/Spar guru. Hence the design team approach. A bunch of guys with some decent ideas that feel we have something to offer.

FYI, the VX CS (Clubsport) is being launched as the fundamental One design. We will introduce the SS when the CS reaches critical mass. The CS rig comes with trapeze tangs so that Junior sailors can experience trapezing in a safe environment. These get used later in the SS. The CS (clubsport is the open class boat (no paid pros). The SS will be for Pro/Am level sailing and will bring a higher level of technical skill.

While the CS sailplan looks Viperesque, from my experience it has worked, and with the light weight of the new boat the SA/ Wetted surface ratio is a little better than the Viper. Up wind when sailed at 8 degrees, the VX will be an outstanding performer even with the Standard rig. Light air performance should be as good or slightly better than the Viper (as a comparative ratio).

It would be heart warming to see VX's and Vipers on the same race venues. Similar boats, but complimentary.

Styling: Some would like to see a more aggressive looking boat. I would concur if budget was not a concern. Whatever we build needs to be done with economical process (if it is to remain affordable). A boat with wave piecing bow eg would require split molds, and subsequent refinishing. The VX has a 0 deg bow angle and can be demolded efficiently without secondary finishing. The rest of the geometry has been arrived at through VPP modelling and analysis. This is the quickest, and best behaved boat we can build within a box of 19' x 7' 3".

It is not all about pleasing the more extreme sailors, but catering for the majority. We have felt the VX meets these performance and behavior requirements while still being reproduceable and affordable. I believe that we have a boat that looks pretty current, and will work with simple efficiency within this model.

Brian Bennett

VX One Design Lead designer.

righting arm from

Nothings wrong with the K6...it's a fun boat and is a growing fleet in Europe. There's only one enclave of K6's in the USA...American Yacht Club. That club is happy with the boat. I think they have 19-20 now. It's their club racer and has some luminaries in the sailing industry sailing it.

My take is Brian is taking his hull plan and offering two versions. A 'sport' and a 'super sport'. The difference being a double spreader, MH Kite on the super.

My guess is the sport is for the family sailor and the super sport for the racer/one-design.

K6 and VX look pretty different as of now. K6 is a rounder boat that is more dinghy like. Never sailed a VX. They haven't made the tooling yet and there is no prototype. That is coming soon though.

I wish Brian all the best of luck in his endeavor. Great guy and a fun sailor to have in the fleet.


 

The Advocate

Super Anarchist
As a current Viper owner, I'm not sure why we should get bent of shape with Brian...J boats and Melges have come out with new boats that compete with existing ones. Looking at the weight of the boat, its ability to be containerized and moved, having a Southern spar, and being built here in America make it an extremely viable and interesting boat. The below-the-deck level roller furling jib is a big plus. Also, note that Brian appears to have designed the jib track to open the leach when tacking. The spinnaker hole appears to be double the size, which is a fantastic improvement on the sail-life of the spinnaker.

Guggs

Black Mamba #109
The size of the hole has fuck all to do with the life of a spinnaker, I am a sailmaker by trade, I know.

From all the reports here, the Viper containerises just fine.

The jib track being shaped as you described has been done before, and we tossed it in the bin. There is one way to do it, and he hasn't drawn it that way. It is a wank anyway.

Southern Spar are not the only decent spar builder in the world, and for this size boat, there are more experienced elsewhere.

Building it America, can you explain why that is a plus, cause it didn't work originally. Who is the builder, we dont trust many down here from the US.

Why when he drew the Viper on his pat, has he brought in other for this venture? Spreading the risk perhaps.

Just came back from a world championships close party, big topic of conversation funnily enough was that there are to many classes, and to many commercial interest launching more, not for the benefit or health of the sport, but to line their own pockets.

If this had of been an 8 mtr boat, I would be patting Brian on the back, but it is IMHO a direct competitor to a class that he failed at marketing and is now trying to reinvent, which in the mean time has been adopted and promoted by a group of owners that have done a awesome job.

A group of other guys made his baby beautiful and successful, so his ego makes him have another go.

FAIL, again.

From what I have read in your post, you've provided a bunch of stupid answers with no actual facts. Basically attacking the Viper Class association's technical chair (2+ years now) with bullshit answers which don't have any sort of merit to them.

-WHAT boat did you toss the jib track design from???

-Why don't you actually name a spar builder you feel would be better for this sized boat?

-Who is "we" when you talk about US boat builders that aren't trusted?

"Just came back from a world championships close party, big topic of conversation funnily enough was that there are to many classes, and to many commercial interest launching more, not for the benefit or health of the sport, but to line their own pockets."

"A group of other guys made his baby beautiful and successful, so his ego makes him have another go."

Wow this world championships "close" party must have been awesome, but somehow you managed to imply that Brian Bennett has basically started another class to line his pockets with money? You really have NO clue about the Viper class or maybe you do and choose to ignore it.
Bullshit answers eh? Your opinion buddy. Just because I don't give you specifics, you claim bullshit! Classy.

Sorry, I was unaware that the poster was the EX Class TD. Before I answer your detailed questions, I would like to know of his and your involvement in the VX.

As far as a good closing party goes, it was awesome. Have been working with the team for the last 3 months helping to improve their match racing skills. To watch blind sailors match race is such a humbling experience, and to get the opportunity to work with a team was something I wont forget quickly.

Um, Brian is starting another class, or did you miss that point? Why doesn't he come on here and explain his reasons cause it lacks credibility to me right now.

I know a couple of you here sail with Brian don't you, just go ask him to pop in and say hi.

 
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Jkdubz808

Megatron
3,928
526
Stuart, FL
Read the post right above yours, Advocate.

Good on ya, Brian. I will be watching the VX closely as it progresses. Up here in the Portland/Seattle area a good light air boat is worth its weight in gold.

 

The Advocate

Super Anarchist
Yep Brian must have read my mind! Much better put than some of his cohorts here, but to me still leaves a lot unanswered.

Personally, I am a little suspicious of the development of it being done at the same time he was working for Rondar and a dealer for the class IIRC.

I am also suspicious of some of the posters here, who have been vocal supports of the Viper in the past and now appear to be backing Brian's project.

For instance, is Black Mamba actually owned by Kiwik27, or has it been sold despite his claim as a viper owner?

 

Brian Bennett

New member
42
1
Automatic
Hello Advocate,

Would you mind telling me who you are? I have no secrets, and willing to discuss the project with anyone who genuinely cares about the track that sailing is on. The Website www.vxonedesignracing.com may enlighten you some.

Other than that, have a good weekend.

Brian

Yep Brian must have read my mind! Much better put than some of his cohorts here, but to me still leaves a lot unanswered.

Personally, I am a little suspicious of the development of it being done at the same time he was working for Rondar and a dealer for the class IIRC.

I am also suspicious of some of the posters here, who have been vocal supports of the Viper in the past and now appear to be backing Brian's project.

For instance, is Black Mamba actually owned by Kiwik27, or has it been sold despite his claim as a viper owner?
 

Brian Bennett

New member
42
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Automatic
Hello Eyesailor.

The new boat is the VX One design, not the VX 19. There is also a poison gas call VX, amoungst other VX things, but only 1 VX One design, Is this OK with you?

Have a great weekend.

Brian

I wonder if Brian Bennett knows that Kenner already makes a boat in the US called a VX19

/monthly_03_2011/post-13399-051880100%201301157499_thumb.jpg

:)
 

Essex

Super Anarchist
1,747
73
New Jersey
I am also suspicious of some of the posters here, who have been vocal supports of the Viper in the past and now appear to be backing Brian's project.

For instance, is Black Mamba actually owned by Kiwik27, or has it been sold despite his claim as a viper owner?
Per the viper website, Kiwikz7, I believe, has sold his viper, but will be not hand it over until after CRW.

He has for the last few years often had Brian B. on board during major regattas (we shall see if he is on for CRW).

(Pai has also crewed with Kiwikz7).

I assume he is somehow involved with the VX project (DG aka KZ7, care to comment?).

Note that VX website says company based in Savannah GA, VX production planned to be in GA & KZ7 is longtime Savannah resident.

 
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The Advocate

Super Anarchist
Hello Advocate,

Would you mind telling me who you are? I have no secrets, and willing to discuss the project with anyone who genuinely cares about the track that sailing is on. The Website www.vxonedesignracing.com may enlighten you some.

Other than that, have a good weekend.

Brian

Yep Brian must have read my mind! Much better put than some of his cohorts here, but to me still leaves a lot unanswered.

Personally, I am a little suspicious of the development of it being done at the same time he was working for Rondar and a dealer for the class IIRC.

I am also suspicious of some of the posters here, who have been vocal supports of the Viper in the past and now appear to be backing Brian's project.

For instance, is Black Mamba actually owned by Kiwik27, or has it been sold despite his claim as a viper owner?
Have seen the website, thought the boat was going to be very different from the Viper and am disappointed with this move. Your words don't mimic your actions. As far as who I am, I don't feel I need to go into, as I am not on the site for commercial reasons, as you are. I have stated my interests here before, so I don't see the point in reiterating that either. There are people here that are not being honest with their interests, and that I find untrustworthy, they appear to be your supporters which tars you.

I think there is some underarm bowling going on.

 

davidgugg

New member
The Advocate

I still own Black Mamba -sailed it at Mardi Gras regatta and will sail in Charleston Race Week, check the scratch sheet. Yes I have it sold after Charleston, haven't got paid yet so I own the boat. Also owned #23 and #77 before #109. Yes I have sailed on and off with Brian as well as lots of other sailors; it's a free world. Viper.org is the current class Pres for the Viper 640 and for full disclosure I lent him my Honda Pilot after his car crapped out in South Carolina to go to Bacardi/ Miami Race Week, while I went to Mardi Gras. DanTucker you left me with 1/2 a tank of gas! Dan left his boat at Brian Bennett's shop for clean up work on his keel as did another sailor from the Pan Handle, so turn that any way you want. Pai also has sailed with me; great sailor. Chic hikes like hell and can call wind better than most of us down wind. "Suspicious Development" - Brian hasn't been affiliated with Rondar since September 2009. Have at it and design all you want Bennett, JBoats ,Melges, Farr,Taylor............

Now that I answered your questions, who are you .... Sailmaker , What Loft , where do you ply your trade? Who do you coach?

Guggs

Viper Black Mamba #109

 

jh26

Member
181
0
Georgia
I am also suspicious of some of the posters here, who have been vocal supports of the Viper in the past and now appear to be backing Brian's project.
I'm another vocal Viper supporter (and owner, with no plans to sell), and I support Brian's project without reservation. I love my Viper and have a blast sailing it, but I also sail at a club that fancies itself a dinghy-only club and thinks the Viper is "too big" - so I'm thrilled to see a smaller and lighter Bennett design that appears to bring all the good stuff of the Viper down to a small enough boat to fit under the 6m barrier. This could be a whole lot of fun.

Yes, there is definitely some overlap in the market at the intersection of the Viper and the VX, and there are some buyers that could be persuaded to go either way. But at the same time it's clear that the VX is too small and light for "keelboat" regattas, and the Viper (so I've been told by certain club officers) is too big to fit in at "dinghy" clubs. That means there is a truly distinct market for the two boats. All things being equal, a buyer is going to pick the one that better fits his local scene.

 

Viper640.org

Member
168
0
Wait, it must have been almost full before you started toting my butt all over to GA & SC to recover my car!
wink.gif


Guggs, I owe you more than a tank of gas. Thanks for the use of the wheels... and your generous hospitality putting me up overnight!

I aim to have you back in the Viper, BTW.

I happen to know that the Advocate is engaged to marry a lovely Aussie gal who was on the podium in Qingdao with my wife. While we haven't bet in person, I sort of feel like we're brothers. I know most of the other posters here as well, so let's all try to take it down a notch, shall we?

 
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Jkdubz808

Megatron
3,928
526
Stuart, FL
Advocate just seems mad that Brian is pushing the VX when he aparently should be focusing on the 640. You guys in the 640 class association are doing quite well on your own, so why shouldn't Brian go out and produce another boat? Seems logical to me.

jh26 nailed it. Certain locations are more dinghy friendly, like where I live. I could get the VX into more regattas than I could the 640. Also with the 6 or so i550s popping up around here, there is talk of starting a trailer-sail club, which the VX would fit into perfectly (and I think the VX would give the i550s a run for their money). A boat like this would be ideal for guys like me, where small dinghy clubs along the river highly outnumber major yacht clubs. Like I said before, I'm watching this boat like a hawk.

Hey Brian, if you are still monitoring this thread I got a question. The website says the blades will be aluminum (minus the bulb of course). Is that true? if so, why not go with carbon or glass and why aluminum? Also, if one gets the club version, will it be relatively easy to convert it to the SS version down the road? Or vice versa if you wanna go back to the CS version?

 

The Advocate

Super Anarchist
Which sportsboat do you sail on again?

Until you do, why dont you just shut up?
At this very moment I am concentrating on an offshore program and having a break from sportsboats, as I cant sail on as much as I used to and help my partner with her paralympic campaign at the same time.

In the past I have sailed on designs such as; Elliot 770, Elliot 780, Elliot 7 FD, Elliot ESPX, Thompson 7, Thompson 750, Costin 7, Sports 8 plus some others I cant remember.

I am look towards buying a 2-3 person sportsboat after the campaign for us to sail and have discussed with Dan Tucker the possibility of installing a transfer bar so that Rach can sail it. I am looking forward to making it to Miami OCR and the worlds as I have had Viper offers for the race week just after these.

Whilst I might not be sailing a SB at the moment, how does that me any less qualified to comment? Or SW are you just doing your usual internet troll thing of finding what I post and being negative towards it. The pattern continues...

 
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