Jimmy Spithill: Foiler for Kids!

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Doug Lord, Oct 11, 2013.

  1. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Spithill thinks that someone should come up with a foiler for the same kids that might otherwise sail Optimists. What a cool idea! What a great begining for a kid ........

    Heres the interview with Alan Block from SA-the kids foiler remark is toward the end:
    http://vimeo.com/76717203#at=0
     
  2. lohring
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    lohring Junior Member

    I think a low tech version of the Windrush moth might be possible at a moderate cost. An unstayed windsurfer sail and rig with a simple, longer hull should help stability with the foils as the expensive component. Even there, standard fiberglass construction as used in centerboards and rudders might be strong enough. A carbon tube wing framework would also simplify construction with enough stiffness. It could take all the sail and foil loads leaving the hull unstressed for light weight.

    The boat only needed rudder foil angle adjustment with no wands and other fancy controls. Upwind sailing was good but downwind stability was marginal. More hull length might help.

    Lohring Miller
     

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  3. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    ==============================
    Hi, Lohring--I'm not sure about that. I would think a small cat-12' X 8'- backed by an "Mini AC Cat" syndicate with help from Spithill and utilizing some kind of innovative financing to get the boats to as many clubs/kids as possible might be better IF the new Cup is still raced in catamarans.
    But I agree that any foiler is better than what's available.

    PS- In my opinion ,from a practical standpoint, a monofoiler that requires the kids to wade out to deep water to get on board is probably not good-it should be able to be sailed off a non-surf beach like the 18' Osprey foiler below with retractable hydrofoils:

    click---
     

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  4. lohring
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    lohring Junior Member

    I think small and simple is the answer to a starter boat. Kiteboards are the ultimate in this and may be the answer. Foils already exist for kiteboards.

    Cats have two hulls and that automatically adds expense. The stability of two hulls makes starting out easier, though. Maybe Mayfly style foils on a formula 12 cat would be a thought. They could fold for beach launching. Wand controlled foils add complexity, tuning, and reliability issues, especially for kids.

    I think the order of expense is foiling kiteboards, foiling monohulls, and foiling cats. Ease of learning would be the reverse order. My abilities could only handle the cat and maybe the monohull.

    Lohring Miller
     
  5. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Thanks, Lohring . I forgot to welcome you to the forum-welcome! I think your assessment is right if cost is the determinant. I hope thats not the case. And the kids will have the opportunity to try everything. I'd just like to see Jimmy get really behind this and do it right because, I'm afraid, if he doesn't or somebody with an equally big footprint doesn't the kids won't sail a foiling cat until much later in their lives.
     
  6. Corley
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    Corley epoxy coated

    I'm not against the idea but ultimately I think the most important thing is getting kids into sailing and retaining them there the type of boat is optional. It's great to have options and maybe a foiler is a valid one if the parents can bear the cost.

    I started sailing in a quite heavy wooden father and son type dinghy it didn't mean I wasn't interested in trying other types of sailing craft in the future. It's important not to ignore adults either and they are often capable of a much longer attention span than kids that might be involved in several sports.
     
  7. lohring
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    lohring Junior Member

    I learned on a Sailfish then graduated to Lightnings but that was around 1960. My kids started in Optimist type boats around 1980 at the club's sailing school with the hope they would sail Coronado 15 trapeze dinghys. The key for kids is enough of the same boat. That means low cost whether a club or their parents finance the boat. It's really hard to beat boards and kites on cost, but the degree of difficulty is probably too high for beginners. I think it will take considerable development before foilers are suitable for beginners. However, a lot of kids are skateboarding. Their transition to foiling kiteboards might be easier than I think.

    Lohring Miller

    PS Thanks, Doug. I've actually been around a while but was interested in power boat issues.
     
  8. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    What age are "kids" ?
     
  9. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Foiler for kids

    ====
    The age where they are between 66 and 130 lb.. Approximately ages 8-15......
     
  10. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    Any cost estimate for keeping an 8 year old on foils against the cost in an optimist
     
  11. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    No. The only way this will work is as part of a very well funded campaign backed by Spithill and/or an AC team or two where the syndicate helps to make the boats affordable by building a lot of them.
     
  12. Skyak
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    Skyak Senior Member

    I think this is far too big a range in size and capability. 8 year olds should start sitting inside the hulls, 10 hiking, 12 wings to traps, 14 and 100+lbs can foil if they have the skill. Developing talent and graduating should be the draw. Asking parents to shoot the wad on the highest performance outrage the kid might want for 15 minutes is a poor plan. Displacement hulls have a natural leveling that makes races competitive despite wide variation of skill. This is important to beginners in general and kids in particular. My approach is a versatile, low cost entry that can upgrade through some years. Additionally throw in some educational value -no kid that gets serious about sailing would ever ask a math or science teacher "why do we have to learn this..".

    I love the glamour of foiling being used to attract youth to sailing. I love the idea of foiling being brought to the masses. Hull shape, mast and sail bending is too nuanced and the gains too small to attract youth. Some learn and win, most think it's some boring bull adults foist on them.

    What I think we need is an open source foil project -goal a mold set that can produce efficient foils for various weights at fairly low takeoff speeds. This is within our capabilities and would enable foils to be used to extend dingy sailors investment into a new more exiting performance range.
     

  13. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    -----------------
    The idea of just adding foils to an existing boat-mono or multi is probably a bad one. A foiler needs to be designed from scratch to work well. It's not a matter of just creating some foils.
    That weight/age range is the range for an Opti-if it works for them it could probably work for a well designed cat.
     
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