Hugh Welbourns's DSS 25

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Doug Lord, Mar 31, 2010.

  1. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    =====================
    I see your point after the boat is already knocked down. But the foil might help prevent a knockdown with the massive extra stability it generates. I think in light of how the foil actually works, Martin Baum's comment was more fact than hype- particularly on the cruising boat to which he referred in post 18.
     
  2. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Dss 25

    ==================
    As mentioned in Post 28, BBB did capsize in a regatta in Hong Kong. You can go to the website and read about it-they hardly say any more.
    I'll keep posting details about Brace,B,B as I find them-then maybe over time we'll get a clearer picture. One thing is certain: she is a very fast boat.
     
  3. DennisRB
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    DennisRB Senior Member

    It should read "may reduce the risk of knockdown, but increase the risk of capsize when knocked down" then. :D

    Anyway here is that pic I posted in the other thread. I thought it might be worth putting up here too.

    This was is in Moreton Bay Brisbane. I still haven't heard anything about this boat.
     

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  4. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Cruising DSS

    -----------------------
    Oh, I don't know: if the conditions were such that a knockdown was a real possibility it might be prudent to retract the foil. But all in all I think the comments he made were fine and it seems as though, in a lot of conditions ,the foil might be an asset. Of course nothing trumps seamanship and experience with the boat and foil over time will show what the best course of action is for the conditions.
     
  5. Cheesy
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    Cheesy Senior Member

    Do you think its a bit of a one trick wonder being so dependent on the conditions? Looks like they have a good fleet of Magic 25s there though

    results here;
    http://www.rhkyc.org.hk/article.aspx?a=1617&c=511

    For a bit of comparison, NZ sport boat rankings
    http://www.racetrack.org.nz/category.php?categoryid=5
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010
  6. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    DSS 25 and more

    From an article by Jim Bolland: http://www.abrushwithsail.com/popup-newsletter.html?PageID=467124

    By Jim Bolland

    I’m not a scientist or a naval architect, nor have I studied hydrodynamics or aerodynamics.

    I’m just a guy who has sailed for fifty years, now writes a monthly e-magazine. But I do know, in simple terms, that a yacht sailing upright is faster and goes to weather a whole lot better, than a yacht that is lying on it’s side with its sails inside-out!

    I also know from experience, that a light displacement race yacht, with enough, or perhaps even, too much sail on a reach, is fast and great fun, as long as the yacht is upright and the crew on the mainsheet and the spinnaker sheet, are in tune with how much ease – or how much trim is needed to effect negative helm.

    I’m pretty confident that I’ll not get a lot of argument on that score.

    I just want you to know, that the story that follows has got a lot to do with standing yachts on their feet, sailing more efficiently and providing crew with a stable and more comfortable platform on which to work. Sounds good! Don’t you agree? But how do you achieve such a blissful wish?

    Well, believe me, there are several guys who will tell you that the answer to that prayer, is staring you right in the face and the two disciples leading the crusade, are Hugh Welbourn, a well - known and successful naval architect and Gordon Kay, an experienced sailor and businessman. Both are directors of Dynamic Stability Systems (DSS).

    Hugh has been waking up at night, pacing the floor and developing ideas about DSS for nearly ten years while Gordon has become the globe - trotting sailor-salesman, spreading the word, convincing the masses. Well, that’s the plan and my money is on him achieving his goal.

    Another enthusiast for DSS, is Wellington, New Zealand, based composite race - yacht builder, Paul Hakes of Hakes Marine.

    Hakes have, in a comparably short time, established an international reputation for consistently producing high quality composite race yachts, to designed weight and with delivery, on time! Paul Hakes is a smart young businessman and not likely to fall for an idea that is perhaps, a bubble in the sky! But, during a business trip to Europe last year, he experienced a day of sailing in the 27 foot Dynamic Stability Systems test boat.

    It was a summer’s day on the Mediterranean, sunshine and a fresh breeze just like the travel brochures and Paul hasn’t stopped talking, or thinking about it since. The New Zealander was very impressed with the test boat, a 27 foot scale model of a 100 foot maxi, designed by Hugh Welbourn. The maxi, was a yacht, that for several reasons did not get constructed. But that’s another story.

    Paul marvelled at the speed of the extreme sports boat and its ability to carry a lot of sail and remain very upright with a small number of crew (three), just sitting on the rail and enjoying, what he described, as a thrilling ride.

    But he wasn’t just sitting there enjoying the ride. He was believing, more and more, as the Med slid under the yacht, that the Dynamic Stability Foil, that was so obviously and continuously, standing this sports boat on it’s feet in 18 to 20 knots of breeze, was a concept with a real future!

    Now meet the fourth DSS disciple. Well, perhaps disciple in training, as at the time of this writing, Colin Parkin hasn’t yet raced his Thompson 30 ‘Drinks Trolley’ with the retro-fitted DSS foil.

    ‘Drinks Trolley’ was originally a mould for early Thompson 30 sports/keel yachts. It was glassed over and eventually became Wellington based, Colin Parkin’s pride and joy. Well perhaps that’s over stating the case. It certainly belonged to him, but there have been times when he believed he belonged to it!

    Racing on Wellington Harbour one day, the mast step collapsed, the mast went through the bottom of the boat and the rest of the rig went over the side! Hakes Marine repaired the very damaged hull by way of the mast step, beefed up the new mast step, the mast collar at the deck and reinforced the chain plate anchoring. ‘Drinks Trolley’ went back into the water and Colin and his crew went sailing again.

    At about the same week that Paul Hakes was savouring the Mediterranean sunshine and the DSS test boat, Colin Parkin, endured one of those days, when you might think everything would have been a lot better if you’d stayed in bed.

    It was a Saturday and he had his ‘arm twisted’ to sail in the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club’s Corporate Regatta. He had a lot on that day and was reluctant to complicate things, but agreed to go sailing.


    What followed was a nightmare! He discovered that his car had been broken into and the stereo/ radio stolen. He was advised that his factory had suffered severe damage in an overnight fire. A painful, day? Well, yes, but the day wasn’t quite over.

    During the Corporate Race, in the afternoon, Colin was sailing his Thompson 30 around the northern tip of Matiu/Somes Island, in the north eastern sector of Wellington Harbor, when, at about seven knots, ‘Drinks Trolley’ hit a rock, knocking the keel bulb and fin aft and completely demolishing the keel floors and a lot of the hull shell in that area.

    When Paul Hakes returned a week later from his business trip, he was confronted with the severely damaged Thompson 30, but as work on the 'Drinks Trolley' began, Paul started talking to Colin about his experience in the DSS test yacht.

    Colin listened and eventually the idea became reality and as the damaged yacht was repaired, the idea of a retrofitted DSS foil also became a reality.

    Fast forward to Saturday July 11 2009.

    It was a very cold, very wet and nasty mid-winter day in Wellington. It was blowing hard from the south-east, the curly flick of a low pressure system that had it’s origin amongst the icebergs, at least as low as sixty degrees south. But the wind conditions were just what the DSS disciples had been waiting for, as light winds, for weeks on end, had been spoiling ‘real’ the test sail plans for ‘Drinks Trolley.’

    So when the valiant crew failed to put in the second reef on ‘Drinks Trolley,’ mainly, I heard, because under-spec. bits kept bending, or dropping off the boom, we creatures of comfort on Kim and Julie’s cruiser, presumed that we were in for an exhibition of knock-down and stagger, sailing!

    How wrong could we be? Yes, the yacht had too much sail for anything like sensible on the wind sailing, but the eased off reaching was a revelation! I was still mildly sceptical as we made our way out to the more open water, away from the eastern shore of Wellington Harbour and did not expect to witness any effect of the foil while watching from another boat. But I was wrong!



    With too much sail and too much wind, this is as close to a knock-down as 'Drinks Trolley' experienced, in an hour of sailing. Photo © Jim Bolland.
    What followed during the next hour and a half was an amazing exhibition of, a light displacement 30 footer, close reaching very fast and very, very upright! Sure, the mainsail was bladed off all the time, but not inside out and at least half, sometimes three quarter full.

    The boat was also very stately, sailing through reasonably big seas, certainly big enough for the boat to bury her nose at times and in one particular instance, she slowed in a wave to a point, that when a large puff hit her, I though she would need a lot of ease to stop her falling over. But no, a bit of ease and she was moving and standing almost bolt upright within seconds. Seeing is believing!

    I might add, at this point, that it was very, very uncomfortable on Kim and Julie’s boat, such were the conditions on the harbour, that photography was becoming very difficult, as it was necessary to lock an arm around the fly-bridge ladder handrail to stay on your feet. Seas were occasionally, breaking right over ‘Shariba’, so there was a battle to keep electronic equipment dry as well!

    Eventually, our hosts, Kim and Julie, let it be known that enough was enough and we made our way back to ‘Shariba’s’ berth, at the Seaview Marina.

    The ‘Drinks Trolley’ crew, however, voted to stay out for more and hoisted a small Genniker, enjoying a reach, during which, the yacht steadily clocked between 19 and 22 knots, at one stage reaching 23 knots. An exhilarating finish to a morning of revelation!

    GORDON KAY:

    A week or so before the 'real' test sail finally came to fruition, I had a very interesting chat with Gordon Kay, DDS’s co-director and earth circling messenger. Although Hugh Welbourn had been sketching and scheming for some years, the opportunity to apply DDS to a large yacht came shortly after Gordon Kay started campaigning the 93 footer, ‘Bols.’ Almost immediately after the launching of ‘Bols’, the drawings of a 100 foot, maxi, that would include the foil, were started. The yacht would be a category 0 boat that was planned to go on and attempt to break the round the world mono hull sailing record.

    Unfortunately, a change in the plans of the prospective sponsor, brought that scheme to a premature end. But development of DDS continued as a serious opportunity to present an advancement in the science of sailing.

    ‘When you look at the design of that 100 foot, category 0 maxi and what you find, whenever you go down the path of DDS, is that the boat is incredibly light, weighing less than 20,000 kilos,’ says Gordon Kay.

    ‘Leopard 3’, 100 foot, 43,000 kilos! The ‘Speedboat’, is in the 30,000’s and even the ‘Wild Oats’, ‘Alfa’s, - they are all in the 28,000 – 29,000 kilo range. It’s a massive difference in displacement.’

    In ten years of development, a lot of tank testing has been done along with a lot of wind tunnel testing, as this is directly related to the foil development. There has also been parallel sail testing done, as higher reaching speeds, brings sail shape into the equation. Then what was needed was practical, on the water testing.

    The decision was made to build a 27 ft, foam GRP, ‘model’ of the original 100 foot maxi plan. A 27 ft, tank test model, but the tank would be the Mediterranean Sea. The boat wasn’t built to go around corners, it was built to prove or disprove, what had been learnt in the tank and wind tunnel.

    ‘In fact,’ continued Kay, ‘the tank only tells you so much and the test boat has validated all that. We’ve outstripped all of our predictions at pretty much every point, because the knock-on benefits are quite significant!’

    ‘We have always believed that the foil would generate righting moment. But the question was could it generate more lift than drag. If it can’t, then it was not useful. Now, from the small boat testing and wind tunnel numbers we are confident that the foil produces more lift than drag when reaching in high-speed conditions. In fact that has not been difficult to achieve.’

    ‘The big question was however, could we achieve it in the slow mode, i.e. upwind?’

    So Dynamic Stability Systems went back to more testing – ‘around the circle a few more times’ – as Gordon Kay put it. They built some boats, sailed some boats and it became even clearer that the tank testing doesn’t understand foils particularly well, but it does understand hull forms.

    ‘The bottom line is, that after all the testing and sailing, the foil was good up-wind. You don’t see a big speed increase up-wind, unlike reaching, when you really can see a very pleasing increase in speed by using the foil.’ Says Kay.

    ‘But what you do see on the wind, is a massive increase in VMG speed. This is because the sea keeping of the yacht is improved immeasurably with the foil in the water. So pitching is reduced, heel angle is reduced, the boats action is much smoother and it doesn’t appear to make anywhere near as much leeway as a yacht without the foil. These are the happy side effects.’

    ‘But when you start reaching, it’s a different story again. The foil is working once you get to say, 7.2 – 7.5 knots on the wind, as in the case of the Wellington test boat ‘Drinks Trolley.’ But when you ease away on to a reach and increase speed, the foil is working more efficiently and the faster you go the more efficient it becomes – more effective stability is being created and the boat is becoming lighter as it is lifted out of the water.’

    ‘Unlike a ‘normal’ sailboat, that becomes less stable and more risky as the wind increases, the boat that has the D.S.S. foil, becomes more stable and the more power you have at your disposal. When sailing ‘Drinks Trolley’ the other day, I explained to the guys that, very simply, the power is effectively ‘on tap. The tap is the mainsheet.’



    There was a lot of wind, but 'Drinks Trolley' just stood up straight and hurried!
    ‘You sail along and if you want to go faster you just pull in the mainsheet and if you want to go even faster, you pull the mainsheet in even further. There are effectively more crewmembers sitting on the rail and the boat gets lighter at the same time. The foil does not affect the helm, does not effect the balance of the boat and it improves the comfort level on the boat, with less pitching and less heel.’

    My very own amateur curiosity made me ask if the foil affected a yacht’s forward motion if it was violently describing a horizontal motion in a very confused seaway. Gordon Kay responded:

    ‘When we first starting doing this foil thing, we thought ‘ this will be quite good for crazy racers,’ but we soon realised that it is pretty good for everyone, from Mum and Dad cruising boats even – we’re doing a 50 foot cruising boat in Europe and a 55 foot gentleman’s day-racer, at the moment – so we decided quite a while ago that we had better take it very seriously. Because if we’re going to have, potentially, every Tom Dick and Harriet taking this on their boat, we need to make sure we are really comfortable with what it does.’

    ‘And so that 27 foot polystyrene and fibre glass model of the maxi, has been flogged relentlessly in the Straight of Gibralter for two years now, to find out what happens in bad weather and big waves.’



    'Drinks Trolley' accelerates in a hard puff and remains upright with the foil very efficient at speed.
    ‘We have two winds there, the east wind, when all the water in the Mediterranean piles up on the beach, or the west wind, which is just windy with flat water. And the foil behaves brilliantly in helping the boat to deal with breaking waves, issues of stability and is very reassuring in situations where you may have to deal with weather that becomes more rugged than you intended to be sailing in.’ explained Kay.

    ‘The test boat only has one reef, we’re not set up for sail changes and from time to time we’ve been caught out, five or six miles offshore, with weather that makes you think that it won’t be a lot of fun getting home! But we just roll up the jib and sail home under mainsail, with the foil standing the boat upright, without the usual drama, in that sort of situation with too much wind.’

    ‘We sailed ‘Drinks Trolley’ the other day in light to moderate conditions. It’s a modern, 30 ft. long, sports boat with a pile of sail and not a massive amount of stability. We had seven or eight knots of wind, with the foil wound out and the boat was moving nicely. The inevitable question was asked, ‘What’s it like without the foil?’

    ‘We brought the foil inboard and the boat fell over, the mainsail had to be eased and eased again even further in a stronger puff It was a pretty convincing exhibition of what the foil, when extended, was doing for the boat!’

    HUGH WELBOURN:

    I rang Hugh in Devon and discussed the recent ‘Drinks Trolley’ test sail. He had already discussed it with Gordon Kay I’m sure, but I wanted to hear what he had to say to my very non-technical observation, which was positive and mildly enthusiastic.

    ‘It sounds as though it’s doing the things, pretty much as it’s supposed to do. It sounds good, because it’s one thing when you design a boat to fit the foil, it’s quite another thing when you put it in a boat that wasn’t designed for it in the first place.’ Said Hugh Welbourn.

    ‘I’m very pleased that it’s come out doing the sort of things it should do. It’s a really good confirmation for us.

    ‘On one trip I did to the Mediterranean, we’d been sailing the 27 ft. test boat on Lake Garda and later in the day we went to see the guys at Wally Boats. We took one of them sailing the next day (back on Garda) and he couldn’t believe how smooth the boat was through the water. We realised that we had got used to it, but it was very noticeable to someone experiencing the boat for the first time.

    ‘Shortly after that,’ continued Welbourn, ‘we went to Queensland, Australia and sailed on a 40ft. boat we had done for an owner there. It has the foil and we noticed the effect of the foil on that boat, immediately. It felt 10ft. bigger!

    ‘This smoothness is where the windward performance comes from. There is quite a lot of drag from the foil, obviously. So we have to balance between drag and lift. Lift is giving you more stability but there is a drag cost, so we have to balance these things out.

    ‘Upwind has always looked marginal when you do the basic numbers. But then you find you have the steadying effect and that’s when all these benefits come in and major benefits too!’

    I then asked if you gained a benefit of weight saving, if the foil was taking over the responsibility of a portion of the yachts stability?

    Welbourn replied; ‘Yes you do, because, say you add more sail. You have to take aboard more ballast, or add to lead to the keel, so the boat ends up heavier, to hold the extra sail up! With the foil, you have effectively broken that loop. With the foil you’ve got stability when you need it!’

    ‘Typically, allowing for the fact that you have to have that basic stability required by the rules and sensible safety, the foil allows you stability while being 10% down on displacement by comparison with an ‘ordinary’ similar yacht. So the gains mount up.

    ‘People are always asking ‘have you raced one against the other?’ That’s a difficult question. They are difficult animals and in some ways you can’t race one against the other.

    ‘It’s very hard to compare one against the other because the whole game has shifted.’

    The foil must offer great benefits for cruising boats?

    ‘Yes.’ Said Hugh Welbourn. ‘Reduction in motion gives more comfort and a reduction in crew fatigue has all sorts of benefits, including more safety for a less tired crew and a nicer experience for everyone, working the yacht.’

    ‘Side benefits like that have been showing themselves as we progress with the foil. We keep getting all these good things and – touch wood – we haven’t had a serious downside yet!’

    PAUL HAKES:

    ‘My first meeting with Gordon Kay was way back when we launched ‘Zana’, around the end of 2002. He’d done the ‘Bols’ maxi and came to town to give Stewart Thwaites, some advice on owning and driving a maxi and what to do to further optimize it.’ Says Paul Hakes, managing director of Hakes Marine

    Paul Hakes. ‘Back then, there was I, a budding young entrepreneur, setting up my own boat yard, my own business. I was motivated and inspired by several, what I called, business elders around me. Then, in comes Gordon Kay, 29 years old and he’s got his own super maxi! I thought that was pretty inspirational, he’s gone into a sponsor and extracted six million US dollars, or whatever exact sum it took to build himself a boat. A very big boat!

    ‘So through the years since then, whenever Gordon has rung me, had something to say or asked me to do something, I have listened. He’s not a blow-hard. He’s a man who has been there and done it! He’s also one of those guys who can step on to a boat and turn it around, performance wise. All of a sudden you’re saying, where did that half a knot come from?’

    Hakes continued; ‘I knew Gordon was living in Spain, but I didn’t know what he’d been up to, for the past four or five years, but now, of course, I realise, that behind the curtains of secrecy, he’d been working with Hugh Welbourn, developing the foil system and developing the test boat.

    ‘Last year I went to the Alicante round of the MedCup, to support ‘AudiQ8’, the latest of the TP52’s that we had built. I had other clients to see there, including Rolf Vrolijk and I saw Gordon Kay. He suggested I should stay a couple of days at his place and he’d take me for a sail in something very special.

    ‘It was a very special sail indeed, It blew me away! I’d never been so fast in a 27 foot yacht.’

    And Paul hasn’t stopped thinking about the foil since that trip, which brings us back to the Thompson 30, ‘Drinks Trolley.’

    ‘While we were working on Colin Parkin’s ‘Drinks Trolley’, after they had shunted a rock off Matiu - Somes Island,’ said Hakes, ‘It occurred to me that I should mention my recent sail on the DSS test boat in the Mediterranean. He listened, with interest and I asked him to consider putting the system in ‘Trolley.’

    Hakes continued, ‘I was confident in the quality of our repair and general improvements to the keel area, plus earlier mast step, deck collar and chainplate improvements, that the boat was strong enough to handle the extra righting moment that the foil would deliver.’

    ‘Colin was intrigued in the beginning but non-committal. Then he became very interested and finally, he came to me and agreed that ‘Trolley’ would be an ideal boat for a DSS foil.’

    And what about the future of the system?

    ‘Like canting keels, I don’t think it will revolutionize sailing,’ said Hakes, ‘but I am very confidant it has a big future in certain, as yet, un-tapped areas of our sport. I am a big fan of the DSS foil system!’

    So, being of an age where cynicism is expected where ‘new fangled gadgets’ are concerned, let me tell you that in this case, ‘seeing is believing!’



    DSS foil pix by Jim Bolland/ click om image:
     

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  7. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Dss

    ============================
    No, not at all. Apparently, the boat is a rocket in certain conditions. The experience with this boat and several other boats is bound to help refine the design parameters required to make a very fast boat-in all conditions.
    From what I've read the guys on Brace are new to the boat and, of course , have no experience with The Foil. They're learning more every day.
    Read Bollands article above....
     
  8. Cheesy
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    Cheesy Senior Member

    It does apear that these foils can cause some pretty big problems when a boat rounds up or down.....
     
  9. Doug Lord
    Joined: May 2009
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Dss

    ==============
    Show me where "it does appear"......
     
  10. Cheesy
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    Cheesy Senior Member

    I did and I have raced against the boat that it is written about (DT). If you look at the numbers for BBB it should be going much faster than it is; one trick wonder = "the boat is a rocket in certain conditions" or a better way of looking at it would be that it isnt that fast in a lot of conditions. If you look at the results it was beaten by Magic 25s in 2 of the 3 races, again not particuarly impressive, especially compared to the more modern sport boat designs around the place.
     
  11. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Dss

    =============

    You're impressions don't seem to be particularly insightful-especially as compared to what Bolland and others say. We'll see as time goes by....
     
  12. Cheesy
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    Cheesy Senior Member

    I should have been clearer.... when I saw it happen
     
  13. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Dss

    ====================
    Saw what happen, exactly?
     
  14. Cheesy
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    Cheesy Senior Member

    It tripped over its foil and headed towards the bricks on its side at a rather quick pace
     

  15. Cheesy
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    Cheesy Senior Member

    Well claiming a revolution by winning 1 out of 3 races against a predominatly much older fleet that should be slower does not seem that insightful to me
     
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