Speed Dream 27 Prototype

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Doug Lord, Sep 20, 2011.

  1. Hussong

    Hussong Previous Member

    Nice set of comments, but I did not compare the S40 to the "vast majority", as you would like to indicate. The comparison was made to the SD27 and it's announced plans for a production run... which is the topic of the thread, no?
  2. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member


    By way of explanation, your initial post came across, with its quote "Racing is about winning, and racing designers are pushed into poor, or very marginal, design practices in order to remain competitive" didn't say that it wasn't meant to be a reference to the vast majority of racing boats. The quote seemed to be saying that all or most of racing is about winning and therefore all or most racing designers are pushed into "very marginal design practices."

    I think you're dead right about the racing sedan v F1 analogy. Speed is comparative. People get very excited about a record-breaking racing sedan despite the fact that it may be much slower than a F1 car, and more people race saloon-type cars than open wheelers. Pure unadulterated absolute speed only interests a tiny minority of sports people, and in sailing most of them just sail multis or boards or kites where breaking the 30 knot barrier is much easier.
  3. P Flados
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    P Flados Senior Member

    Discussion comparing high volume classes to high performance classes is about as apples and oranges as you can get.

    There is a huge amount of satisfaction for a typical club sailor to push his average performance boat across a finish line in front of a bunch of others in the same boat. This is real, this is fun and this is either skill of luck (I admit my first hand experiences are in much more in the "luck" category)

    At the same time, a small percentage of classes add the element of high performance. Beating all of the rest while going faster than any other sailboat in sight adds an element that sounds a lot like "the best (sailor) of the best (class)". "Best of the best of the best" was a not so flattering line in popular movie, but in honesty most of us would love to be able to say it as long as it was actually true.

    Some are content to buy into a class that is high performance. This adds to the bragging rights, but we all understand where the speed came from ($$$$$).

    Some classes give you a decent purchase option, but allow a few to add in the element of "I made my regular boat better than it was when I bought it" or even "I made a better boat myself" in addition to "I sailed it really good". Again if you add "I sailed good" to " I went real fast" to "My boat building/tweaking was best" you are increasing the level of satisfaction. However this comes at an increased dollar and/or effort cost.

    Some only want the effort/cost of a high volume class. This does not really diminish the benefit to cost ratio available to them. Others want more and are willing to pay more and/or work harder. We all make these kinds of choices.

    Most that push a boat design in search of higher performance understand the path they have taken. Most attempts do not make any significant contribution to the performance of available boats to the masses. A few do show some new or improved aspect that improves an existing class, creates a new class, or improves a feature used by a range of classes. Faster is more exciting than slow. Many classes are faster now than the available classes 50 years ago. This is normal and good.

    Some "improvements" turn out make a boat faster, but less acceptable to the bulk of the sailing world. This type of stuff generally just fades away. However, sometimes a really fast feature will be retained by a few even if rejected by the Masses (sliding beam on a International Canoe for example). This is all OK and the diversity is part of what makes racing sailboats more popular than racing power boats.

    I am all for encouraging those that are willing to take an idea and put it on a real boat and show us the results. Even if the specific application is not something we want to take part in, the knowledge gained can be real. With the advent of Internet videos and forums, there is more opportunity than ever for an innovator to get appropriate notice for doing something better. Lets make the most of the successes, but at the same time be critical of those making unfounded or inappropriate claims.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Hussong

    Hussong Previous Member

    Very nicely said.
  5. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member

    Nice post, P.

    The only thing I'd like to mention is that some of the things you state as absolutes (i.e. that high performance boats are not high volume boats, that faster boats are more exciting) aren't always true. It depends where you come from. In my area (Sydney, Australia) the 16 Foot Skiff class (which is definitely quick, about as quick as International 14s) is about the fourth or fifth biggest-volume class. In Europe, the fast F18s cats are pretty popular.

    And in places where high performance boats are commonplace (in my home town there's something like 120 active skiffs or foilers, every one of them quicker than say a Melges 24 or 505) there are many people who wouldn't agree with "faster is more exciting than slow". There are, for example, literally dozens of sailors from Skiff classes who find Skiffs more interesting than faster cats.

    And, of course, "exciting" can mean different things to different people, or to the same person in different ways or different times. I've sailed classes that regularly hit 30 knots, but that excites me less (in terms of the overall campaign, or the intellectual excitement, or the visceral excitement of achieving a win or an aim) than the challenge of racing other boats at 5 knots. To be frank I get more excited with outstanding performance upwind in light winds at Laser speeds than I do going 30+ knots on a slalom board, and I'm very far from being the only one. Thirty plus knots can be bloody boring.

    While there are more fast classes than there were 30 years ago, in the world's strongest dinghy market the popular boats actually reached their performance peak in 1975. That is, 1975 was the year when the "top 10" classes (that is, the average speed of the 10 most popular classes as assessed by national title entries) reached its peak. It was also the same year that dinghy racing started to drop in popularity. The popular boats these days are actually SLOWER than in 1975, or for that matter than they were in 2000. Interestingly, there are more UK sailors doing national titles now than in 2000, when fast boats were said to be taking over. Fast boats are a smaller % of fleets now, and fleets are increasing....

    However, I don't mean to be attacking what you said, merely pointing out that there are many exceptions.
  6. water addict
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    water addict Naval Architect

    I'll pick a small bone- the fastest sailing craft under 20 is a sailboard. Whether one considers that a "sailboat" or not is semantics. In my view, a sailboard is about as much of a "sailboat" as a developmental moth, and mechanically is boatloads simpler (pun intended). Also, a performance cat under 20' could easily give a moth a good run if not beat it boat for boat depending on conditions.

    Number of hulls- honestly who cares? It's all sailing. It's all good.
  7. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    WA, I specifically used the term "sailboat" in reference to the Moth because that is what it is-and what a sailboard is not. Settled by the USCG in the speed sailing thread in "multihulls".
    The Moth experience is extremely significant as is the board experience in showing that monohulls can and do beat multihulls as a rule in "craft" under 20'.
    The point is that the Speed Dream 27 is a prototype for a boat that is targeted as being the fastest sailboat period-and it is a monohull. Whether
    Vlad can achieve his targets or not is still an open question but given the facts in small sailboats and boards under 20' he's got a very good chance.
    He is one of the most innovative designers on the planet and I wish him luck and I'm in awe of his guts and determination in an economic climate like this. What an inspiration the guy is!
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2011
  8. Submarine Tom

    Submarine Tom Previous Member

    Good Lord!!

  9. Vlad M
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    Vlad M Senior Member

    Hi CT 249,
    I believe that argument and criticism are appropriate - and welcome - in discussion about any design and hostility is not.
    Mal Smith very well may be discrete and quite when it comes to his designs but he was rather outspoken belittling mine, and that's low.
    Now about the nature of our claims. Please remember that you are referring to a marketing news release and marketing always is about hype.
    We are embarking on a huge campaign now and to succeed we have to be great self-promoters, whether we like it or not. That simply is the nature of the game.
    As for SD27 performance potential, we are quite confident in the numbers we are claiming. In my view, as long as you honestly believe in what you are saying, a healthy doze of hype wouldn't hurt.
  10. Vlad M
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    Vlad M Senior Member

    Thank you!
  11. Vlad M
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    Vlad M Senior Member

    You are looking at the very rough preliminary renderings, and at this point we don't worry much about details. Boom gooseneck is simply detached from the mast to eliminate stress point and most likely would go on the back of the cabin top.
    Our lifting foil is similar to Hugh Welbourn's DSS (you could check out his web-site), which has already proved itself quite well. The main difference is that Hugh uses fixed keel and I have added end-plate winglets for lateral resistance.
    For SpeedDream this lifting foil is only secondary feature and much more important are the hull shape and the "flying keel" concept.
  12. Vlad M
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    Vlad M Senior Member

    Hi Mal,
    I'm not familiar with the intricacies of your feud with Doug, but having visited this forum only occasionally, I find his maverick spirit quite appealing. He bring in interesting, entertaining, provocative ideas - what's wrong with that?
    After all, who knows, which wacko idea would be the next to become accepted?
    For decades most people sneered on the idea of a hydrofoil on a sailboat... Where are they now?
    Similarly, when I first started talking about a concept of single-handed skiff with asymmetric spinnaker, people in the industry laughed at me. "Nobody would be able to control such a boat", they said. Now some of them are building copies of my MX-Ray...
    So, perhaps some of the crazy ideas Doug advocates would prove themselves as well? SpeedDream, for example.
    Speaking of which, can you elaborate a bit why this concept doesn't make much sense to you?
    First of all, I'm not trying to beat the rule, I've discarded it.
    My goal is very simple - to create the fastest offshore boat. I don't feel that multihulls are safe enough to push them much harder than they've been up to now.
    Besides their potential is well explored in many directions, including L'Hydroptere. I wanted to try an alternative and came up with SpeedDream.
    Now, what would be your idea of such a boat if you start with a clean slate?
    Look forward to hear!
  13. CutOnce

    CutOnce Previous Member

    As far as I can see no one has a feud with Doug. Nothing is wrong with reporting on interesting, entertaining and provocative ideas.

    Conversations however are conducted in groups and require a certain amount of self control - consciously allowing others a chance to speak, as well as holding one's tongue when an opinion is expressed that is in opposition. If one person in a group consistently demands attention, their behavior quickly results in frustration amongst the others. Posting repetitive threads, asking for input and then attacking anyone who has the temerity to actually respond - with over 80% of the thread posts attributable to the person starting the thread becomes a problem.

    It isn't hard to see - and clicking on the "responses" number in the thread selection lists quickly shows a summary of who is posting to threads, and how many posts they've made.

    At times it seems that many attention seeking threads are being kept on life support only for the purpose of maintaining "control" of the forum, and establishing "ownership" of the turf. I would be far more charitable if the topics discussed in these "zombie" undying threads actually got built and actually delivered the functional benefits loudly discussed. History hasn't been so kind regarding many of these threads. Part of the problem with this is that Internet forums are "scored" as valuable based on traffic statistics - and nothing helps traffic congestion better than a good, bloody car crash of a thread, complete with conflict, battling trolls and wreckage.

    Everyone knows they shouldn't slow down and look at forum mayhem as it takes attention away from non-controversial threads that more deserve a second look. But human nature is what it is, and very few among us can stop jumping into these threads.

    Then again, I could be wrong. In reviewing a few zombies to confirm my premise is realistic, I've noticed I'm guilty of jumping into the crash zone more than I'm proud of.

  14. Boat Design Net Moderator
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    Boat Design Net Moderator Moderator

    One thing to remember as you are reading a thread is that if you find any member's posts are simply not something that you are interested in reading and you feel they are monopolizing threads with posts you personally don't want to spend your time on, click on their username and click "ignore." Then their posts within the threads will be hidden.

  15. MalSmith
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    MalSmith Boat designing looney


    I don't have a feud with Doug, although I have had some robust discussions with him in the past. His enthusiasm for his chosen interests is admirable, but the the sheer volume of his dissertations and the repetitiveness can get a bit tedious.

    Regarding your design:

    Firstly, any boat that is pushed to, or beyond its limits is going to be dangerous. At least with a multihull it is possible to back off the pressure quickly and the boat will revert to a stable platform without significant loss of speed. Your design will require constant vigilance to remain upright with little margin for error and I imagine it could be quite exhausting for the crew if sailed to it's full potential. Granted it may be rightable from a capsize, but the rig will probably be trashed. Doesn't sound like a significant safety advantage over a multihull to me.

    Secondly (and admittedly I haven't seen the numbers), I can't see that your design will have a righting moment advantage, nor a wetted surface advantage over a comparable multihull, so it's difficult to see where the extra performance will come from.

    Thirdly, the 27 ft version, which I presume is an inshore boat, will require relatively deep water and steady winds to be sailable, which will limit the venues. You already admit that it will be a handful to tack, to the point where you suggest a specially designed racing format may be appropriate. Doesn't sound like a versatile design to me.

    The original critisism was that some of the respondents recognise your design as a proa (and therefore not such a novel idea). I agree, but I feel that it is a compromised proa design which would be inferior to a true proa of similar proportions. If it were me, I would ditch the canter and explore the proa implementation. Modern proas are an underrepresented type with plenty of development potential.

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