Multi 50 Design Rule: no vertical lift!

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Doug Lord, Aug 4, 2012.

  1. Roger Six
    Joined: Aug 2012
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    Location: San Luis Obispo

    Roger Six Surge Protector

    Isn't the devleopment of the sailors an on going activity that never stops?

    You guys talk a lot about the technology, but I think that is not where the development is truly taking place in any class of race program. It's all about the person doing the driving, making the strategy calls and pacing themselves over the distance. Unless you intend to race unmanned vehicles, this will always be about the humans on board.
     
  2. yves
    Joined: Jul 2012
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    Location: paris

    yves Junior Member

    I think you should understand a key turning point in this ocean racing multi story : the route du rhum 2002

    (route du rhum that was created following the limitation to 56' on the OSTAR (now Artemis Transat))

    The 2002 edition had both a record in terms of participation (58 boats), but also in terms of broken boats and capsize : only 3 Orma finished from 18 at the start (kind of the fastnet 79 for the multis), and even the winner (Desjoyaux) stopped three times for repairs.
    This was due to a very serious low at the start, and a secondary one in the middle.

    Somehow the Orma class never truly recovered from that, and the multi50 class, formalized in 2003, also took that into account, and again it was meant to be an "access class"(for skippers as well as sponsors) similar to the class40 for IMOCAs. Now that there is no more Orma, things are for sure different.
    But also clear that in particular in terms of R&D (and especially for ocean racing where mistakes can be serious, and sponsors not necessarilly willing to see a new rhum 2002), foils and full open development add a lot of cost and associated risks.
    Now personnally (as a spectator more than anything else), if the multi50 was more open on this, and enough sponsorship money for quite a few boats, that would make things more interesting for sure! But ..
     
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  3. Corley
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    Corley epoxy coated

    With all due respect how would "development" over existing known pathways (C foils and canting rigs) really enhance the Multi50 class? It would make it a bit faster and a bit safer when pushing hard but it's not going to fundamentally change it from an entry class to a MOD70 beater and it will drive up costs. Structural failures were endemic in ORMA so Multi50's are hardly unique in that department. The development could be viewed as being able to construct a boat thats strong enough where it needs to be and yet light enough and efficient enough within the restrictions of the class rules to still be competitive. Interestingly enough the most recent serious structural failures in the Multi50 class have been on Prince De Bretagne the boat shown in Dougs pictures with the float mounted daggerboards the failures have occurred at the float/beam interface maybe some new stresses there not correctly understood or engineered for.

    The current top Multi50's are much more closely matched in performance than the last generation of ORMA60's where Groupama the best funded campaign was consistently walking away with the silverware. If you were looking at entering a class with a limited budget being able to step into a class where close racing would allow your sponsored entry a good chance of winning is more attractive than one where you can be easily and comprehensively outspent.

    What other current entry level professional multihull Ocean racing circuit gets more boats on the line and racing? I'd be interested to know.
     
  4. groper
    Joined: Jun 2011
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    Location: australia

    groper Senior Member

    The case for foils or not, has good arguments on both sides, weve already discussed some of them.

    Consider this;
    We already know that as technology is developed in racing, gradually it filters down to consumer level at some point in the future. So nowadays, it is not uncommon to see performance cruising multis, owned by the wealthier mums and dads, cruising the world with their kids for pleasure in carbon foam sandwich boats with carbon spars, rotating masts and carbon squaretop mains etc! The less wealthy are still doing it in glass sandwich boats, with still reasonably high aspect ratio rigging and centerboards, and generally higher technology boats than you see in the same places 20 years ago. This is 'normal' in every industry, as the technology gets cheaper and better understood, everyone can potentially gain access to it.

    Heres a quick vid showing the start of a local race in australia with mostly cruising boats competing, look at the gear they are running and its not just 1 or 2 boats using it!



    These days, its not uncommon to see home builders infusing carbon or glass foam sandwich laminates to build their boats, and using CAD to build their frames or molds from. By the same token, its not a difficult or expensive exercise to build a 2 peice mold for a curved carbon lifting foil at home. Have a look at some of Rob Dennys work including his freestanding carbon masts, homebuilders build for $5000AUD (AUS prices are double the USA) total in materials and 100hours labour. This type thing was unheard of even 10 years ago, and the access to information on advanced techniques was also impossible to find. These days, just go to youtube and you can find plenty of 'how to' info on infusion, on the net its everywhere... PLENTY of people are doing all sorts of interesting things, AT HOME, with boats that fly completely clear of the water or use lifting foils, or other 'hi tech stuff' etc.

    This is how much has changed over the last 10-20 years... its ALOT... it would not be a stretch of the imagination, to suggest we will be seeing many 'ordinary' boats or 'performance cruising' boats as they seemed to be named, using lifting foils in the near future... same goes for canting rigs and other technology that we see as 'racing only technology' in the present tense.

    The idea of limiting the use of foils for the current race boats, is not helping consumers get access to it. Would it be a fair comment to suggest that as some race boats become obsolete, they are sold off and refitted/weighed down with cruising gear, to be reborn as performance cruisers by the new owners, in particular a 50ft class boat?

    Would be nice to see some second hand ex race multis on the market, complete with lifting foils, sold and parked down the local marina... make the next 10 years alot more interesting wouldnt it?
     
  5. Doug Lord
    Joined: May 2009
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready


  6. Corley
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    Location: Melbourne, Australia

    Corley epoxy coated

    Theres some good comments there Groper. There is a portion of the cashed up market who's boats are going more high tech and they will probably become a percentage of the new norm as they get sold off on the used market. Step away from the Qld coast and take a look round an average Island in the Pacific or more remote cruising grounds where real liveaboard cruisers congregate you'll find the boats to be a motley collection of mostly older boats and the tech level to be surprisingly modest.

    Racing Multihulls and particularly trimarans dont have much of a future outside of racing they have skinny hulls and very limited payloads you generally cant just knock out some watertight bulkheads and turn them into a comfy cruiser. I'd also question how many cruisers would want to mess around with float lifting foils in the first place I'd say the slots would get carboned over and the boards thrown away or sold. The rigs would most likely be replaced with fixed non rotating and non canting masts for ease of use. I dont know what kind of cruising you aspire to but fooling around with foils and canting rigs would certainly not be on my agenda if I wasn't racing.

    Some racing innovations have translated well to cruising boats. Watermakers are certainly a more practical way of keeping multihulls light and negate the need for large and heavy water storage tanks. I also agree the use of carbon and infusion are opening up new possibilities and opportunities to the competent DIYer. Oh and by the way old Multi50's and ORMA 60's are available on Yachtworld for very reasonable prices you could snap up one of the final lifting foil and canting mast ORMA's for under $500,000 and Multi50's for round the $250,000 dollar mark a bargain when you consider how much they cost to build and inline with a large new modern production catamaran. Good luck trying to sell the "black corridor" to the girlfriend or wife and kids though over a comfy cruising cat.
     
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