"Modern" version of the 12 Meter Class by Tom Ehman

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Doug Lord, Jan 21, 2016.

  1. Doug Lord
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    Tom Ehman is trying to promote a new class that will look like the 12 Meter Class above the waterline yet be more modern below the waterline. He selected Farr to do the design:

    SAN FRANCISCO – Farr Yacht Design of Annapolis, Md., has released the first 3D renderings of the new Super 12 yacht that will be used in the annual San Francisco Yacht Racing Challenge (SFYRC) for the Super 12 Cup beginning in July 2017 on San Francisco Bay.
    “We are thrilled to have been selected to develop this new yacht,’’ Farr Yacht Design Vice President and Senior Naval Architect Britton Ward said. “This project will require all of our experience from grand-prix designs, our understanding of modern production techniques and our history with developing the most competitive one-design fleets in the world.”
    “The strong and enthusiastic reception for the new boats and regatta has been gratifying,” said SFYRC CEO Tom Ehman. “The Super 12s are a modernized version of the classic 12-Meter yachts, which were used in the America’s Cup from 1958 to 1987. With a classic look above the waterline and a modernized underbody, the Super 12s will return dignity, style and stability to yacht racing.”
    Full text of the Farr Yacht Design statement that accompanied the release of the Super 12 renderings:
    “In mid-2015, we began discussions with Tom Ehman, who has been rallying support for a new event – The San Francisco Yacht Racing Challenge. The event will be held annually, starting in July 2017. It promises a return to friendly competition between nations in one of the most iconic and reliably windy venues anywhere in the world. To limit costs and provide equal competition the racing will occur in one-designs. Crews will have to meet strict nationality rules and each boat will be crewed by 12 with a minimum of two women, two men, two age 22 or under and one age 62 or over.
    “Realization of these objectives requires the design and construction of a new class of boat – the Super 12.
    “We are thrilled to have been selected to develop this new design. This project will require all of our experience from grand-prix designs, our understanding of modern production techniques and our history with developing the most competitive one design fleets in the world. The design
    of the Super 12 is moving into high gear as we go to press, and the work of finding the right blend of tradition, modern construction and sail-handling capabilities has the entire team energized to produce something very special.
    “Above the waterline the boats are inspired by the classic meter-boat look – long bow and stern overhangs, low freeboard, sheer spring, and narrow beam. Below the waterline, a modern appendage package with a deep lead bulb with wings and a trim tab provide power and exceptional upwind performance. The boats will sail upwind into the San Francisco tide at relatively high angles of heel and run deep downwind with fractional symmetric spinnakers providing spectators and television audience incredible visuals in both fleet and match racing settings.
    “The boats will be built by Westerly Marine in Santa Ana, California to the strictest one-design controls. They will be built from a combination of E- glass and carbon pre-preg with foam cores. We have worked closely with Westerly to develop a robust, cost-effective laminate and construction scheme that will allow us to produce a boat a month at full production pace, within very strict one-design tolerances. By virtue of the modern materials and manufacturing combined with the carbon rig and rigging we can achieve a similar stability level to the 1980’s vintage 12 Meters but at a displacement some six-plus tons lighter. Unrestricted by the vagaries of the 12 Meter rule we are able to stretch the waterline and develop a significantly less distorted hull form, reducing drag and further improving performance. Under the water we are maintaining a modest draft of 10’6” (3.2m) to maximize the range of venues suitable for Super 12 racing. The rig incorporates a 20% topmast and 140% overlapping genoas to provide a silhouette that has a clear historical lineage.”

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  2. Doug Lord
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    12 Meter Class Letter to Tom Ehman

    12M Class Sends A Letter To Tom Ehman
    (from Scuttlebutt Europe today)


    We have followed with interest your efforts to establish a new racing class in San Francisco conceptually modelled on the International Twelve Metre.

    While we have no issue with the formation of such a class, the International Twelve Metre Class does object to your continued use of the heritage and history of our class in the promotion of your new one.

    As I have mentioned to you before, our Class is active and healthy, especially in the North American Fleet based in Newport, and the in the Northern European Fleet based in the Baltic where the newest Twelve was launched in 2015. This is in addition to the recent refurbishment or restoration of several Twelves such as VICTORY '83, DEFENDER, BLUE MARLIN, ITALIA II, and VIM.

    Further, we have registered with authorities our objection to your use of the International Twelve Metre Class Insignia. Such use is completely at odds with the mutual respect for each other that has existed between sailboat classes since the adoption of such insignia at national and international levels.

    Page | 1As you are well aware, the current 12 Metre Class Insignia has been in continuous use since the adoption of the Second International Rule. Further, the addition of an "S" was used by the Scandinavian 12's built to the Second Rule but prior to the effective date of universal implementation of the Second Rule. Subsequently, as you also are aware, the "S" has been used by yachts built to the Universal Rule at 17' rating, specifically the Herreshoff "S" Boat one-design first launched in 1919, and still an active racing class.

    Since you have decided not to affiliate your new concept with the Twelve Metre Class, we demand that you and your agents immediately cease using the Twelve Metre in promoting your effort, and cease using the International Twelve Metre Class Insignia.

    As I have written to you before, ITMA, our owners, and our sponsors do not wish to see our class, legacy, or brand diluted by your efforts. If your effort is worthwhile it should be able to stand on its own, not on the Twelve Metre Class.

    Yours sincerely,
    W.H. Dyer Jones, President
     
  3. Doug Lord
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  4. OzFred
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    OzFred Senior Member

    It's the 12 Metre Class

    You might care to get the name right: 12 Metre Class.
     
  5. PAR
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    I'd hate to see the 12 metre come back. It was a horrible set of rules, forced ruinous sets of lines and generated really poor sailing boats. Now another class of 12, what's this make 5 classes? Other than expense, why build something like this, so you can drink vodka and feel like Ted Turner?
     
  6. CT249
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    CT249 Senior Member

    Oh, I dunno, Par. The only time I raced a 12 (running bow in the NYYC Annual Regatta) I loved the whole thing - not JUST the history, but the size of the boat and the way it sailed.

    The next day I had to sail with Grant Simmer on the latest carbon Farr 52. It was nice, but not special like the 12 had been.

    Personally, I think the "Super 12" missed the boat by not going for longer ends - non sailors, and many sailors, probably prefer the look of more classic ends. If you can't win on speed, win on looks.
     
  7. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Other than the history and novelty of it all, I just don't get it. If I wanted to win on looks, I'd take a Universal rule or early CCA. Reasonable sea boats that look nice and can do something other than drag a huge hole along with it.

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    Give me a bigger Cherubini 48 and that'll be something worth sailing.
     
  8. Doug Lord
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    12's

    I remember as a kid thinking the 12's were fantastic. I remember the epic Liberty vs Australia II which was such a spectacular race with a tremendous result. But we have learned so much since then and trying to recapture the past the way Ehman is doing it doesn't do it for me. The 12 meters were a facet of sailboat racing that inspired me when I was younger but this new thing does not inspire. And its a shame the way it was handled with the 12 meter class.....
     
  9. CT249
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    CT249 Senior Member

    One of the big lessons, of course, is that moving towards ultra-high performance boats has led to the smallest fleets the America's Cup has seen in years. So arguably, TE is applying the lessons that the AC is ignoring.
     
  10. CT249
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    Oh well, looks are a personal thing, as is the sailing experience; I certainly enjoyed the sailing experience of the 12 more than the sailing experience of a Finnisterre type or a Malabar schooner; each to their own.

    However, surely the early CCA boats dragged even more water when they were going as fast as a Metre boat? There is plenty of evidence that they were normally slower than a Metre boat despite probably having bigger rigs, so surely that means they were causing more drag?

    The Cherubini's timberwork looks sweet. To me the brightwork is actually an example of the sort of aesthetics that the "Super" 12 could have achieved, and that may possibly have appealed to many more people.
     
  11. Doug Lord
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    ==============
    The "small" fleet in 34 made up for it by producing the fastest, most exciting racing in the history of the America's Cup. I think it's unfortunate the 72's were dropped but maybe the new(50'/15m) boats can do equally as well-or maybe better.
     
  12. PAR
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    In the late 60's, the CCA's dig drag a pretty big hole, but they where quite a bit different from the early versions, which were more wholesome ocean sailers. The 12's were more rule beaters than good sea boats, while the more accommodating offshore racers of the previous eras, tended to just be better deep water boats. You don't see many 12's doing the regular run of offshore races, but some of the UR and CCA designs regularly make and do well in these races (corrected of course). I think the requirement of sailing to the venue (A/C) should be reinstated to some degree. Maybe a mandatory 500 mile run for each boat, to insure each is indeed an ocean racer, not a delicate contrivance, meant to beat a rule in a bay. Yeah, they'll crap in a bucket and eat cold sandwiches in route, but at least they'll have to run a shift rotation, provide some accommodation for off shift and it'll need to be built to handle more than SCA warnings and 4 foot chop.

    Agreed the last cup was a spectacular race, but I don't think this was because of the boats, so much as a few on Oracle (thank you Tom) that simply made their best guess at what they needed, when they were so deep in the hole they had no choice.
     
  13. Doug Lord
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    Well said, Paul!
     
  14. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member

    I think this is a splendid idea.

    I just wish they didn't call this boat something it's probably not.

    It probably does not measure out to twelve meters, by the twelve meter formula.

    They should heed the twelve meter folks demands and change its name.

    Other than that, I think it is well within reason.

    It looks reasonably fast, for a keel boat, and like it could handle some weather.

    The fun would be racing it in the kind of weather that makes the AC cats stay home.

    I can also imagine boats of this type giving rides during the off season, something the AC cats probably would never do.

    I do believe there an an argument to favor grace and grandeur over pure spectacle.
     

  15. Doug Lord
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    Another "Super 12" rendering:

    [​IMG]
     
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