DNA's arrive in the US

bvining

Member
73
0
Atlanta
It seems that some sailors lose sight of the fact that A's are such fun to just sail to enjoy their sweet performance. As a kid in 1975 I was allowed to sail an Australis one morning and then just had to build one myself, so I pushed shopping trolleys and packed groceries and shovelled earth until I had a plywood boat. Won a few, lost more, but still had a great time sailing rings around nearly everything else, and that boat would be so slow today ....
+1000!
With all this talk about new $30k Dna's, how about a complete thread hijack with a low cost entry level 5k A? Carbon mast, boom, beams.

I took a set of 18ht hulls and beamed them up with a set of Forte carbon beams and added a fiberfoam mast and sail combo(2k used). I havent put her on the scales yet, but im guessing she's about 20 lbs over weight. This isnt going to be an issue since the guy sailing it is 275lbs. The ht hulls have a very similar stern profile as the newer dna and evo2 trend. The bottom side rocker is also pretty similar. The gel coat on the ht's is thick, so some serious sanding and the boat is mirror smooth, no scratches. The only thing that may be an issue in heavy air is that the beams are proabably 6 inches too far forward and the boom is going to be a bit long for a standard acat sail. Some creative inhaul, outhaul will solve this and since the boat will live at lake lanier, i dont expect it to see heavy air for the majority of the year.

If you see ht hulls, especially the pre worrell ones, i think they make a good starting point for an entry level acat. We will see how she feels one her maiden voyage later today, but im pretty happy with how this came out.

Pics later today.

 

manicsh

New member
1326808870[/url]' post='3549254']Seven new DNA A-Class platforms arrived via container to the Florida Keys a couple of weeks ago with three of the new boats staying for the Coconut Grove Invitational winter opening regatta. Ben Moon dominated the event on his new DNA but he was also sailing with the latest Fiberfoam mast and Glaser sail (the same rig he used for a top 10 finish at the WC in Aarhus this past summer).

US sailors now have a great opportunity to measure our development against what is now considered the benchmark platform in the world (similar to the arrival of the first Flyer wave piercer in 1999). There is now a great opportunity to measure the performance of the strongest US designs like the EVO HT, the Barracudas, the evolving EVO II, the next generation of the A3 (the A4?), and the new Rodgers A-Class design from Tampa Bay. There are also the modified designs that have shown good performance this year including updates of the Flyer II and Bimare XJ with curved blades and the updated ASG3's that performed very well in the spring and at the NAC this October.

Rig development will continue with Jay Glaser continuing to fine tune his latest A-Class design on both the Fiberfoam and Hall masts that US sailors are using. Bend tests on the latest Halls now have these tubes pretty spot on to the latest Fiberfoams. Personally I am in a good position to trial the DNA against the ASG3 (modified) and have the ability to swap rigs and sails between the boats. It should be fun and interesting to learn the differences in the boats in different conditions. Personally I anticipate a light to moderate air WC this October and I believe that will keep the door open for several designs (new and older) to be very competitive.

The new DNA's looked great. The build quality is excellent and the foils package looks very well done. The boats are very close to a plug and play package in the tradition of the AHPC and Gel Tek boats from Australia and the Bimare boats from Italy.

This thread can be used for updates on the racing and tuning and what we observe and learn. Should be a fun journey to the Worlds in the Florida Keys this year. Join in or stay tuned.

Bob, 4 DNA's just shipped for the US today, will be great to see you soon!
 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
DNA is on the trailer ready for the trip back to Tampa for the Admiral's Cup this weekend. Got some good Velocitek Speed Puck GPS tracks from my first races with the DNA at last month's Ronstan Midwinters. The ASG4 is rigged at the club so went for a sail on Friday night in 12-14 knots of breeze. I did two four mile W/L runs to a club mark with many tacks and jibes in conditions that were comparable to the first two races on the first day of racing in Tampa at the Midwinters (in terms of wind strength). Here's are my observations

1. I was hitting slightly higher boatspeed top ends downwind with the ASG4 (16-17.9 knots) than I did with the DNA in Tampa (15-17 knots) but I was sailing slightly deeper angles with the DNA. I was using my standard Fiberfoam and Lars1 on the ASG4, not the new bendier F/A and stiffer sideways Hall mast and fuller Glaser Den Ben that is on the DNA. Wonder if I could have squeezed some better angles with the more powerful rig on the ASG4?

2. I think SimonN is right about raising the weather daggerboard downwind when flying a hull. I hit some of my best boatspeed and depth numbers on the ASG4 since I have been recording and downloading the tracks early last year keeping the weather board raised on the downwind legs. I also think it makes the boat feel a bit easier to steer downwind (not as "tracky" a bit looser).

3. The ASG$ still does not have as nice of a helm feel as the DNA. I may go back to my stock rudders with aspect ratios more similar to the DNA rudders. I've been using relatively high aspect blades on the ASG4 and I am beginning to believe they don't have as good a feel on the boat.

The DNA is teaching me a few things about how to sail the ASG4 better. After the Admiral's Cup, I've lined up another good sailor to come out so we can sail both boats.

 

Wandering Geo

Super Anarchist
1,457
68
U230,

Nathan Outeridge has been training using his DNA fitted with GPS (not sure what sort).

He was saying after the NSW states that the best he has recorded is in the 19's.

Said he gets a bit scared at that point and sticks two hulls in the water.

May have bettered it on the way home (his) to Wangi from Mannering Park after the titles.

Southerly buster (25kn+) ripped through at the end of the last race.

Now sold his DNA and is concentrating on the 49er until the Olympics.

Be interesting to see if he gets a new one at the end of the year.

 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
U230,

Nathan Outeridge has been training using his DNA fitted with GPS (not sure what sort).

He was saying after the NSW states that the best he has recorded is in the 19's.

Said he gets a bit scared at that point and sticks two hulls in the water.

May have bettered it on the way home (his) to Wangi from Mannering Park after the titles.

Southerly buster (25kn+) ripped through at the end of the last race.

Now sold his DNA and is concentrating on the 49er until the Olympics.

Be interesting to see if he gets a new one at the end of the year.
When I first got into the class, Jeremy Laundergan and Pete Melvin told me that they thought the highest speed you could get out of an A-Cat was around 19 knots. You just run into a wall to go any faster unless you added more horsepower for moderate conditions (or perhaps like a sailboard reduce the sail area when it is really windy). I'd agree with Nathan that at around 19 knots, the boat will be getting twitchy for sure with the current sailplan. I'm not sure I believe the claims of +20 knots that DNA has claimed unless it happened in absolutely flat water conditions. In the real world, you are typically sailing in chop and waves in any strong wind condition and that certainly limits what you can get out of the boat. A-Cats are superb light to medium air performers for sure and since most of us sail predominately in light to medium conditions, we should feel fortunate the design excels so well in that range.

 

Tornadosail2012

Super Anarchist
1,006
0
New Hampshire
. The ASG4 is rigged at the club so went for a sail on Friday night in 12-14 knots of breeze. The DNA is teaching me a few things about how to sail the ASG4 better. After the Admiral's Cup, I've lined up another good sailor to come out so we can sail both boats.
Bob,

Last I looked your boat was an ASG3. What have you done to it to make it an ASG4? Also, has Lars launched a new A4 yet? I have not had the time to make it to his place yet. Spending days off getting in the last ski runs of the season. Will switch to boating in 2 weeks.

Thanks,

Tom

 

Bang Zoom

Member
56
0
Canton Ma
3. The ASG$ still does not have as nice of a helm feel as the DNA. I may go back to my stock rudders with aspect ratios more similar to the DNA rudders. I've been using relatively high aspect blades on the ASG4 and I am beginning to believe they don't have as good a feel on the boat.

Did you try raking the ASG4 blades back a bit?

 

Bang Zoom

Member
56
0
Canton Ma
U230,

Nathan Outeridge has been training using his DNA fitted with GPS (not sure what sort).

He was saying after the NSW states that the best he has recorded is in the 19's.

Said he gets a bit scared at that point and sticks two hulls in the water.

May have bettered it on the way home (his) to Wangi from Mannering Park after the titles.

Southerly buster (25kn+) ripped through at the end of the last race.

Now sold his DNA and is concentrating on the 49er until the Olympics.

Be interesting to see if he gets a new one at the end of the year.
When I first got into the class, Jeremy Laundergan and Pete Melvin told me that they thought the highest speed you could get out of an A-Cat was around 19 knots. You just run into a wall to go any faster unless you added more horsepower for moderate conditions (or perhaps like a sailboard reduce the sail area when it is really windy). I'd agree with Nathan that at around 19 knots, the boat will be getting twitchy for sure with the current sailplan. I'm not sure I believe the claims of +20 knots that DNA has claimed unless it happened in absolutely flat water conditions. In the real world, you are typically sailing in chop and waves in any strong wind condition and that certainly limits what you can get out of the boat. A-Cats are superb light to medium air performers for sure and since most of us sail predominately in light to medium conditions, we should feel fortunate the design excels so well in that range.
Steve C will tell you its a wetted surface area problem and yes the limit is around 18.5 for an A-cat not surported by C foils. I recorded a peak of 22 on my XJ but it was very transient.

 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
. The ASG4 is rigged at the club so went for a sail on Friday night in 12-14 knots of breeze. The DNA is teaching me a few things about how to sail the ASG4 better. After the Admiral's Cup, I've lined up another good sailor to come out so we can sail both boats.
Bob,

Last I looked your boat was an ASG3. What have you done to it to make it an ASG4? Also, has Lars launched a new A4 yet? I have not had the time to make it to his place yet. Spending days off getting in the last ski runs of the season. Will switch to boating in 2 weeks.

Thanks,

Tom
Ben Moon and I took our ASG3's and moved the front beam forward 200 mm and the daggerboard trunks aft 100 mm. We replaced the stock curved daggerboards (they were too short in span) with the same hi-modulus pre-preg carbon foils Ben Hall is producing for the EVO II and the Barracuda's. With the beam relocation we were also able to go back to what I would call a standard foot length sail and I feel that was also a positive change. The ASG3 required a shorter foot sail due to the distance between the beams. The improvement in balance and performance was very significant. The boats became extremely competitive against the best boats in the US (A3, EVOHT, Barracudas, etc.). As I stated above I'm in a unique position to gauge the boat's performance against the DNA which is now considered the benchmark for performance. I believe the ASG4 with the standard Glaser Lars1 and a standard Fiberfoam Medium is equal to the DNA (witht the new generation mast and Glaser Den Ben sail) upwind in all conditions. Downwind, I believe the extra volume in the aft sections of the DNA and the more powerful mast/sail combo give that boat a better feel and is more forgiving to reach the best combination of speed forward and depth. It will be interesting to put the new rig on the ASG4 and the old rig on the DNA and see the difference (stay tuned). I'm not sure you can take advantage of trapezing downwind on the ASG4 like you can on the DNA and other boats. But I don't think that makes it non-competitive. There is also the option to go one step further with the ASG4 and graft a fuller volume aft section similar to what is being done for the A3's to convert them to A4's. It would not be that expensive to do.

I think Lars is close to finishing two A4's in his shop. I heard today he had a knee injury (from skiing?) so might be healing for awhile.

 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
3. The ASG$ still does not have as nice of a helm feel as the DNA. I may go back to my stock rudders with aspect ratios more similar to the DNA rudders. I've been using relatively high aspect blades on the ASG4 and I am beginning to believe they don't have as good a feel on the boat.

Did you try raking the ASG4 blades back a bit?
I did try changing the rake and it only seemed to load up the helm. It's not that the higher aspect blades don't work, they are just twitchier and you really do not have the same down speed control with them. They are sexy to look at!

 

Bang Zoom

Member
56
0
Canton Ma
3. The ASG$ still does not have as nice of a helm feel as the DNA. I may go back to my stock rudders with aspect ratios more similar to the DNA rudders. I've been using relatively high aspect blades on the ASG4 and I am beginning to believe they don't have as good a feel on the boat.

Did you try raking the ASG4 blades back a bit?
I did try changing the rake and it only seemed to load up the helm. It's not that the higher aspect blades don't work, they are just twitchier and you really do not have the same down speed control with them. They are sexy to look at!

Maybe a longer tiller would calm them down? They do look like the low drag setup but I'm guessing they bend a bit under load making things a bit unpredictable. I went more moderate with my new blades.

 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
3. The ASG$ still does not have as nice of a helm feel as the DNA. I may go back to my stock rudders with aspect ratios more similar to the DNA rudders. I've been using relatively high aspect blades on the ASG4 and I am beginning to believe they don't have as good a feel on the boat.

Did you try raking the ASG4 blades back a bit?
I did try changing the rake and it only seemed to load up the helm. It's not that the higher aspect blades don't work, they are just twitchier and you really do not have the same down speed control with them. They are sexy to look at!

Maybe a longer tiller would calm them down? They do look like the low drag setup but I'm guessing they bend a bit under load making things a bit unpredictable. I went more moderate with my new blades.
With skinny high aspect blades, you have to be very careful to not get flow separation through too much angle of attack (i.e. you can't move the tiller as much). Easy to control while you are practicing, in the heat of a race you might find you jam the tiller and the boat stops because the flow has broken loose from the blades.

 

Tornadosail2012

Super Anarchist
1,006
0
New Hampshire
There is also the option to go one step further with the ASG4 and graft a fuller volume aft section similar to what is being done for the A3's to convert them to A4's. It would not be that expensive to do.

I think Lars is close to finishing two A4's in his shop. I heard today he had a knee injury (from skiing?) so might be healing for awhile.
Thanks for the indepth look at your changes. i will wait to hear how the new rig goes. I hope that Lars did not do too much damage to the knee. I know we have had spring skiing conditions over the last two weeks and I almost tore my knee skiing in that shit.

 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
Here's the top ten finishers at the Hall Spars Admirals Cup and their platform-mast-sail choices. "NG" indicates a new generation mast or sail (i.e. the newer masts that have more fore/aft deflection and are stiffer sideways and the fuller, more powerful sails designed to fit those masts):

1. Bruce Mahoney DNA, NG Fiberfoam, NG Glaser (Den Ben)

2. Bob Hodges DNA, NG Hall, NG Glaser (Den Ben)

3. Ian Lindahl Lindahl LR2, Fiberfoam, 2010 North

4. Ben Hall Barracuda V3 (very similar to DNA), NG Hall, NG Landenberger/Glaser (Ben used two sails in this event which was allowed)

5. Woody Cope Rogers "O", NG Hall, NG Glaser (Den Ben)

6. Jeff Linton Bim XJ (modified with Hall/Cogan curved daggerboards), NG Fiberfoam, NG Glaser (Den Ben)

7. Bob Webbon Marstrom Mk V, NG Hall, NG Landenberger

8. Brett Moss Flyer II (modified with Marstrom curved daggerboards), Fiberfoam, 2010 Landenberger

9. Jonathan Farrar A2 (modified with Hall/Cogan curved daggerboards), Hall, Glaser (Lars1)

10. Tracy Oliver Barracuda V1, NG Hall, NG Glaser (Den Ben)

Bruce Mahoney (in addition to his skills as an excellent sailor) probably had the best upwind speed of any sailor at the regatta. This verifies the upwind performance that Ben Moon had with an identical rig at the 2011 WC where Ben rounded the first weather mark in the top ten in nearly every race. As second place finisher at this event, I am trying to obviously match that performance with a different mast that is very similar in static bend testing. At the last event we sailed (the Ronstan Midwinters), I sailed with more spreader rake and seemed more competitive to Bruce's upwind speed. For this event I sailed the first two days with less spreader rake (5 mm less). I changed back on the last day and felt the upwind performance for me was better in the last two races. I also need to sort out the right amount of diamond tension for the spreader rake setting. The new generation sails with more luff curve and/or seam shaping seem more critical in getting this combination right. I'm not sure there is any advantage over a NG rig/sail upwind versus a recent "conventional" rig (example Fiberfoam Medium with Lars1 or 2010 generation Landenberger) if you get the spreader/diamond setup optimized for the mast and sail.

Offwind, I think the new generation rigs and sails had a slight advantage in the 6-13 knot races (Races 1, 2, 3, 7, and 8). In races 4, 5, and 6 all sailed in 14-18 knots with very short and steep chop, I'm not sure the extra power available downwind was any advantage. Ian Lindahl, Brett Moss, and Jonathan Farrar showed good speed with conventional masts and sails (especially Brett and Jonathan who were sailing modified older designs). It will be interesting to see if these sailors upgrade their rigs as the season progresses (I know Farrar is). The North sail Lindahl used is a bit of an unknown for me. It seems to perform very well for Ian.

Platform wise, I think the DNA is showing itself to be a very balanced design that performs well in all conditions. Bob Webbon (who sailed his Marstrom in this event but has a new DNA platform waiting to get on the water in Houston) was delighted with the boat's light air performance against the Marstrom which is a good benchmark performer in light air. I was not surprised that it did OK in light air as it's bottom profile is very similar to the Barracuda sailed by Ben Hall who got great results in light air races last year (the current North American champion). The Lindahl LR2 looks to be a very competitive design (and it seems to follow the design trend of the DNA and Barracuda)and it will be very interesting to see how its performance could change as Ian sorts out his rig and sail choices. Back to Bob Webbon, he felt like he had to work harder upwind in the windier races with larger chop on the Marstrom Mk V but in the last race on Saturday (Race 6) that had the most wind and worst chop condition, he was blazing on the final downwind passing me and taking a big chunk out of Bruce Mahoney's lead (Ben Hall was also pretty fast on that downwind leg). Jeff Linton had a strong event and showed excellent speed on the Bim XJ modified with Hall/Cogan curved boards. He struggled in the breezier races (races 4, 5, and 6) but he felt he still had to sort out his rig and sail tuning for those conditions. It will be interesting to see how he progresses with the boat at the next event in Houston which (for the time of year) is expected to have some breeze. Jeff is a former ROLEX Yachtsman of the Year and his resume includes an Etchells 22 World Championship and a Lightning World Championship. If anyone can optimize a boat, it's Jeff. There is also the OH Rodgers "O". Woody Cope sailed a very consistent series getting all top ten finishes. The boat is very similar to the DNA in concept with subtle differences. I would expect OH to do a tweak of the volume distribution and profile sections on this design before the WC in October.

Brett Moss and Jonathan Farrar also seem to have some cards to play. I'm not sure what Brett's plans are with his Flyer II as he is still sailing with a conventional rig and getting decent results with it. It will be interesting to watch his rig choices if he keeps the platform and I am sure he is considering his options for further modifications to the boat (perhaps similar to what has been done with the aft sections of some Flyer I's). Jonathan Farrar also has the option to graft the new aft sections on his A2 that have been developed for the A3 to upgrade it to the A4. The A4 looks very competitive as proven recently by Pete Melvin dominating the New Zealand A-Class Championship on his A4. Lars Guck is currently finishing two new A4's in Rhode Island and Jim Godbey is currently converting his 2011 A3 to an A4.

Finally there were a couple of other platforms and rigs that also seemed to do well in specific races. Bob Curry had a 4 and 6 on the last day with his recently upgraded EVOHT (addition of Hall/Cogan curved blades). Bob was changing sails every day and seemed to hit the right combination on the last day with a 2 year old Skip Elliot sail that is very similar to a 2010 Landenberger. Ron Roth literally finished his ASG3 to ASG4 upgrade a week before the event (same changes that Ben Moon and I to our ASG3's last year) and told me he had the best speed and performance ever with the boat. Regarding the ASG4, I believe I would have been competitive with the one I still own at this event as it has already proven itself against the Barracuda V3 and LR2 in racing last year with a conventional rig (Fiberfoam Medium and Glaser Lars1).

To summarize, I believe there are still a lot of choices for US A-Class sailors including economical choices on recent and older boats that have the potential to be upgraded with rig and sail updates. Given that the WC will probably have a diverse range of conditions that is expected to be mostly in the light to medium wind range, that should keep the door open for a diverse range of equipment to be competitive at that event. That is good for the class and for sailors who want to get into the class.

Next up is the US Nationals next month in Houston. Stay tuned.

 
Last edited by a moderator:

Lost in Translation

Super Anarchist
1,258
65
Atlanta, GA
Great write up! I believe Ian's boat is an LR4. I agree that it looked really nice and is a big departure from the narrower LR2's and LR3's. Ian also debuted their new curved boards and they are true to form for the LR series with very narrow chord lengths.

Some older boats were still going OK too including a Flyer 1 with straight boards and '02 mast in 11th but not as fast the new stuff. ;)

 

AClass USA 230

Anarchist
958
47
Louisiana
Great write up! I believe Ian's boat is an LR4. I agree that it looked really nice and is a big departure from the narrower LR2's and LR3's. Ian also debuted their new curved boards and they are true to form for the LR series with very narrow chord lengths.

Some older boats were still going OK too including a Flyer 1 with straight boards and '02 mast in 11th but not as fast the new stuff. ;)
Apologies to Ian and John on getting the series number incorrect. It was the LR4. When I saw the narrower chord daggerboards, I wondered if there would be some negatives but Ian's performance did not indicate that at all. Going into the last day, Bruce owned the event and there were at least 6 sailors in close contention for 2nd through 5th overall.

Bailey, I think this was your best finish in an A-Class event to date and it will be scary when you get your new DNA. Watch out folks, the CLK is coming!

 

Tornadosail2012

Super Anarchist
1,006
0
New Hampshire
To summarize, I believe there are still a lot of choices for US A-Class sailors including economical choices on recent and older boats that have the potential to be upgraded with rig and sail updates. Given that the WC will probably have a diverse range of conditions that is expected to be mostly in the light to medium wind range, that should keep the door open for a diverse range of equipment to be competitive at that event. That is good for the class and for sailors who want to get into the class.

Next up is the US Nationals next month in Houston. Stay tuned.
Bob,

Great report and you have shared wonderful information about the masts, sails, platforms and foils. It loks like you are getting a great workup leading to the WC this fall. I hope you find that fine-tuning before the nationals. I read the short report from the NZ Nationals and saw that Pete had easily won that regatta. I did not know that it was on the new A4. Good Luck in Houston.

TTS

 

Lost in Translation

Super Anarchist
1,258
65
Atlanta, GA
haha. Thanks. I hope I don't go backwards with all the new gear!

The class is really vibrant, and I just wanted to encourage folks to get into it with whatever boat they can muster. It's a lot of fun and there is great racing to be had throughout the fleet no matter what the gear. I think we had 35 boats at this last three day regatta and I hope to see more on the water at future events this summer.

 
Top