Steve and Dave Clarks Unidentified Foiling Object

RedTuna

Super Anarchist
4,837
1,241
Texas
Dave -

If you can, ignore the hanger-ons and the haters, and if possible share how many boats will come out of the first run, when they will be available, and what regions of the country they are going to? Help us understand where fleets may form first...

Wess
Texas! The amount of buy-in and enthusiasm coming out of the lone-star state is causing me to seriously consider issuing Texas sail numbers.

DRC
Nice thought but no real need, Dave. Many of us kinda prefer to fly our Texas flag decals that Ortega makes up for us.

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So there are boats in the queue for South-central Texas and North Texas. Anywhere else?

Looking forward to trying one out.

 

mr_ryano

Super Anarchist
I've got one of the first 9. it will bounce between Newport and Central LIS. My beach is right next to Yale Sailing, so if you're in the area and want to fly, let me know. Dave, if you want to do a demo day at a Yale Intersectional, let's make it happen

Dave -

If you can, ignore the hanger-ons and the haters, and if possible share how many boats will come out of the first run, when they will be available, and what regions of the country they are going to? Help us understand where fleets may form first...

Wess
 

Wess

Super Anarchist
Been trying to find time to get up to Dave's and he was thinking about a thing down here but my life has just been so nuts and it seems unlikely things will slow down until early next year for me.

The good news is I have 2 drysuits...

 

True North

Member
173
1
Texas
I am all for "Texas specific" sail nos. As the biggest Texas homer ever in the long and storied history of ever, I want TX numbers.

Buy a boat, Tuna. We can cuss and discuss sail nos. later.....

I set up a Texas -specific UFO FB site, but presently it's a rehash of stuff from this board. I expect to have some new content in a bit over a week. My hope is that the site will be but one of many platforms grassroots sailors like me will use to drive acceptance of the boat. My target is Ray Hubbard in Dallas up to Hefner in OKC, but obviously, the more the merrier. I have been in contact with a Central Texan who's ready to get started as well. As Dave C. says, this isn't vaporware. It's real.

 

F18 Sailor

Super Anarchist
2,663
246
Annapolis, MD
How many coming to Annapolis Dave? What's minimum realistic takeoff speed? I couldn't get the Mach 2 to foil consistently at my weight (190lbs) on an average day in Annapolis. Spent 6 hours trying though! That experience is part of the reason I bought an A-cat instead of a UFO or WASZP; hard to go wrong with an all carbon rocketship for under $5k (used) that you can add foils to (another $4k).

Curious, how much to substitute Pro Set INF-114/212 in for the vat of Vinylester? I fall into the minority that would pay $3k extra up front to have what amounts to an infinite competitive hull life: http://www.westsystem.com/ss/building-for-long-term-competitive-performance/

 

gui

Anarchist
How many coming to Annapolis Dave? What's minimum realistic takeoff speed? I couldn't get the Mach 2 to foil consistently at my weight (190lbs) on an average day in Annapolis. Spent 6 hours trying though! That experience is part of the reason I bought an A-cat instead of a UFO or WASZP; hard to go wrong with an all carbon rocketship for under $5k (used) that you can add foils to (another $4k).

Curious, how much to substitute Pro Set INF-114/212 in for the vat of Vinylester? I fall into the minority that would pay $3k extra up front to have what amounts to an infinite competitive hull life: http://www.westsystem.com/ss/building-for-long-term-competitive-performance/
But Sam, it was your first time on a moth! Sad that you based your decision on that single day. A bit more practice and you would have been flying quite a bit more.
 

Dave Clark

Anarchist
878
745
Rhode Island
How many coming to Annapolis Dave? What's minimum realistic takeoff speed? I couldn't get the Mach 2 to foil consistently at my weight (190lbs) on an average day in Annapolis. Spent 6 hours trying though! That experience is part of the reason I bought an A-cat instead of a UFO or WASZP; hard to go wrong with an all carbon rocketship for under $5k (used) that you can add foils to (another $4k).

Curious, how much to substitute Pro Set INF-114/212 in for the vat of Vinylester? I fall into the minority that would pay $3k extra up front to have what amounts to an infinite competitive hull life: http://www.westsystem.com/ss/building-for-long-term-competitive-performance/
But Sam, it was your first time on a moth! Sad that you based your decision on that single day. A bit more practice and you would have been flying quite a bit more.
So I've been thinking about this conundrum for a few days. Unless it was badly out of tune, a mach2 should be able to fly a 190 pound sailor in normal breeze. The UFO sure does. Would I be right in thinking that you had a hard time finding your takeoff groove thanks to instability? In that regard (and having less stuff to inadvertently put out of tune) the UFO should be fundamentally easier to get flying than the moth. I've learned from coaching people that the boat takes off most effortlessly when I tell people to keep it planing easy and to ease rather than hike. The boat tends to easily climb out of the water from there. Takeoff begins around 7.5knots hullspeed. I tend to see at least nine as I start leveling off at cruising altitude and then it's straight into the teens once you start to really use the boat at that elevation.
To answer your resin question, good vinylester is on par with average resin and is without question the right option for reliably building a high quality gelcoated part from a mold. I could fill a book with all the other good reasons for vinylester, but I'll avoid boring everybody.

DRC

 
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Dex Sawash

Demi Anarchrist
2,444
680
NC USA
Can you leave the lifting foils off completely and sail the boat with just the verticals?

Not sure why you would want to, maybe training mode for a new sailor or something....just wondered if you could.

 

Dave Clark

Anarchist
878
745
Rhode Island
Can you leave the lifting foils off completely and sail the boat with just the verticals?

Not sure why you would want to, maybe training mode for a new sailor or something....just wondered if you could.
Yes. The foils are collapseable which also means that horizontals are removable and swappable. However, what you'd want more than that is to set the ride height (easy) to foil-assist only mode. This limits programming of the foils to what I call hyperplaning mode, where they'll provide lift until the boat is barely making contact with the water but no further. That's a hell of a lot of fun. After getting used to that, you'd dial in another 3 or so inches of ride height and start to learn foiling while keeping the training wheels pretty close to the road. Crank ride height up to taste as you progress.

DRC

 

MidPack

Super Anarchist
3,645
84
undecided
Can you leave the lifting foils off completely and sail the boat with just the verticals?

Not sure why you would want to, maybe training mode for a new sailor or something....just wondered if you could.
However, what you'd want more than that is to set the ride height (easy) to foil-assist only mode. This limits programming of the foils to what I call hyperplaning mode, where they'll provide lift until the boat is barely making contact with the water but no further. That's a hell of a lot of fun. After getting used to that, you'd dial in another 3 or so inches of ride height and start to learn foiling while keeping the training wheels pretty close to the road. Crank ride height up to taste as you progress.DRC
That's really clever IMO. Way better than verticals only, sorta like (inward) DSS before foiling.
 
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gui

Anarchist
Can you leave the lifting foils off completely and sail the boat with just the verticals?

Not sure why you would want to, maybe training mode for a new sailor or something....just wondered if you could.
Yes. The foils are collapseable which also means that horizontals are removable and swappable. However, what you'd want more than that is to set the ride height (easy) to foil-assist only mode. This limits programming of the foils to what I call hyperplaning mode, where they'll provide lift until the boat is barely making contact with the water but no further. That's a hell of a lot of fun. After getting used to that, you'd dial in another 3 or so inches of ride height and start to learn foiling while keeping the training wheels pretty close to the road. Crank ride height up to taste as you progress.

DRC
I had a ~200 pounder out on my boat the other day. Nice 10-12 kts, the dude was flying around happily, first time out on a moth. Got back to shore and started browsing mothmart :)

Sam got a shit session, 0 to 8 kts ... maybe foilable in the puffs, but not as a moth noob. Anyways, A-cat seems like a good choice since at least there's a local fleet where we sail.

Sorry for the slight thread high-jack!

 

F18 Sailor

Super Anarchist
2,663
246
Annapolis, MD
gui,

You are absolutely correct. It was a shit day! But a typical day for Annapolis, unfortunately!!!! I can count on two fingers the days I've sailed in consistent 8-12kts of breeze here in Annapolis this year. One hand the number of days sailed in 15+kts this fall on the East Coast in general. More events and days sailed in 0-8 than I can count. That is where the UFO beats the Moth, possibly, as its a bit more east coast friendly. Possibly. The A is a hard platform to beat in non foiling conditions. Also, couldn't find a Mach 2 for under $15K...

Agreed on the vinylester vs. epoxy. I take it the hulls are carbon? Yes, been spending too much time reading fatigue plots...carbon+epoxy+honeycomb wins that one, followed by carbon+epoxy+foam followed by carbon+vinylester+foam followed by S-2 glass. Its nice having a boat that stays stiff forever!!

 

Phil S

Super Anarchist
2,595
224
Sydney
If you only sail in 0-8kts the only thing better than an old straight board ACat would be a new rules IC. Forget all the foilers it will be just frustrating falling off the foils all the time,

 

Dave Clark

Anarchist
878
745
Rhode Island
Had a great visit from True North and Big D, who flew up from Dallas Texas to try out and witness the UFO. Footage forthcoming soon. Lots of upwind foiling and tacking (good and botched) recorded for you skeptics out there. Thanks for flying out, guys! Btw,the door is still open for ongoing close encounters, and we're doing plenty of demos. A 5mm wetsuit covered by a wetsuit keeps you hot on this river.

DRC

 
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Had a great visit from True North and Big D, who flew up from Dallas Texas to try out and witness the UFO. Footage forthcoming soon. Lots of upwind foiling and tacking (good and botched) recorded for you skeptics out there. Thanks for flying out, guys! Btw,the door is still open for ongoing close encounters, and we're doing plenty of demos. A 5mm wetsuit covered by a wetsuit keeps you hot on this river.

DRC
Nice Vid on the Fulcrum Works FB page

Tink

 

True North

Member
173
1
Texas
Thank you, Dave Clark, for allowing Big D and me the opportunity to see, and in my case, try the boat.

To provide context for the following comments, I am 59, 6' 3", 190#, not in very good shape presently, have age appropriate arthritis and bulging discs in the lower back (who doesn't at this age?), was a spare to fair Laser sailor in the past, and have had no exposure to any type of high performance sailing. I think I am as close to "Everyman" as it gets.

Did the boat allow me to experience foiling? Yes. Did I suck? Yes. Will I be a freaking hell of a lot better my next go around? Absolutely.

The boat is small, but the deck where you operate is surprisingly large. If you get too far back, the stern will sink, so there's a limitation to where you can sit yourself, but it's amazingly generous.

The boat is also light, coming in at 110# all up. The bare hull, per Dave, is in the 70# range sans fittings.

The power connection of the boat, the pod that houses the mast tube and the front foil, is very strong and virtually bomb-proof. The pod was a day 1 concept, it seems, as I saw the various iterations of the boat behind the shed. The first boat, two hulls joined by cut up Laser lowers, featured a large wasp nest of of a pod. Of course, it has evolved in the time Dave and his dad have been working on the proof of concept to this point, but it is an interesting, innovative feature.

The most demanding part of getting the boat rigged seemed to be raising the sail given the amount of luff curve in the main. Once the main was up, the ingenious mast support tensioner engaged, and the cunningham cranked, the noodle of a mast became gorgeous in its match to the sail. No hard points noted despite it being a 3 piece spar. My recollection is the rig utilizes only two blocks, both for the main -- the guide block on the wishbone and the main ratchet. All other line turning is performed by black ferrules, reducing the amount of stuff to break or clog with sand.

Dave rolled the boat into the water on its dolly rigged up, foils up (very creative and simple solutions used to keep the front foil up and the rudder up), and it had excellent manners when in the water. He sailed the boat out to the test area at low tide, so the main foil was up completely and the rudder down slightly. The boat sailed very well in this configuration.

Once in the sailing area, Dave sailed up to the dinghy Big D and I were in, and we easily swapped places. The boat is very, very stable when swapping out crew.

Dave set the boat in training mode for me -- I would be able to foil, but the training wheels were on. In the 10 mph breeze we had initially, the boat popped right up. After that first run, the wind came up making it more difficult for me as I was simply not quick enough on the sheet. I tried to hike the boat and steer it a la a Laser, and that doesn't work for a beginner!

For me to get going, I had to have the boat well off the wind as it would weather vane if I tried to get going, say, on a close reach. Getting the boat oriented was as easy as pushing out the boom.

Stability. This boat has it in spades. Despite my burying the leeward hull, the weather hull, and both hulls(!), the boat didn't capsize. I got washed off the back once and had to take my feet out of the straps; instead of the boat capsizing, it waited for me like Kevin Costner's horse in Dances with Wolves. I just swam back to the boat, grabbed the strap, pulled myself onto the deck with no hint of the boat turning over on top of me, and kept going.

Living in Dallas where it's in the 70s today, and going to RI where the water is in the 50s, I made sure I was not going to get cold, and I am certain the copious amounts of neoprene and drysuit material I wore constrained me in some respects, but none more than my choice of footwear. I was wearing old Aigle boots, and it was a bitch getting my feet under the straps, which were set for Dave. My size 11s had a very difficult time dealing with the straps; however, Dave said the production boats will be equipped with straps that will be held above the deck.

I was never able to figure out how to get back in the boat from being fulled hiked. Dave showed me afterwards his trick to swing his body forward. So it can be done, but Laser guys will have to learn a new skill there as your legs are flat on the deck with no "pop" room to get you back in the boat.

The sail is cut to provide an end plate effect, so one trundles through a cutout in the back of the sail. When I went for my first jibe, I thought I would get caught on the sail somehow, but I never did.

I never acquired enough speed to get the boat to tack smoothly -- they were two pointers -- but I watched Dave in awe as he snapped that boat through the wind and nearly pulled off a foiling tack.

I was on the boat about 20 to 30 minutes, and while I never had any runs of consequence, I had a freaking blast. To hear the deafening silence is a thrill. My final dismount was one I certainly won't forget....

On shore, Dave purposely doesn't coddle the boat. He doesn't wash anything off or cover anything, wanting to see how the boat will wear. He has identified a few areas that need addressing, and will do so in the production boats. And the blades are not designed to be the most hydrodynamic things you have ever seen. But they are safe (no sharp edges) and tough.

In my business life I always try to make sure I know the worst case scenario, and I abhor hyperbole; that said, this boat has the potential to be transformative for dinghy sailing. Who doesn't want to foil like we see in the AC?

Price. Dave is going to hit his price point. No, there won't be a lot of beautiful detailed injection pieces on the boat, but its functionality is its beauty as is bringing foiling to a lot of people who would not consider it given price and physical constraints.

Regarding getting bored due to the simplicity of the boat, I don't buy that. The AOA adjusters for the main foil and the rudder provide infinite possibilities.

While an old fart like me is not the intended target market, even oldsters like me will be able to sail this boat, have a thrill, and get the boat back to the club. Having shown the youngsters with whom I sail Lasers pics, they're fired up.

One last comment. Dave and his dad have done something we don't see much these days in our market -- they have developed a product to a very high standard before putting the marketing machine in overdrive and taking people's orders, and money, long before a possible splash. A website is in the works, and the commencement of production is imminent.

If you're on the fence on this, get off the fence and order a boat.

 
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