Sydney-Hobart 2012

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Doug Lord, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    Good point Tim - personally, I would rate that as a valid method for competing with more traditional boats.

    The development of technology that utilizes raw nature ( wind, wave, solar , crew ) that is the essence of the challenge. Developing the technology to create a 'nature machine' is part of the challenge IMHO.


    Dougs comment
    "Schock 40 uses an electrical system and others do too for their canting keels"

    is relevant only if the optional Gas System isnt used, and given that the batteries only last 3 days, isnt an option for around the world.

    "The Battery System Features...

    Simple 24 volt system-- only 4 6 volt batteries!
    Reliable, well-tested golf-cart batteries
    Easy to read "fuel-gauge" for battery charge
    Quick overnight charging--just plug it in!
    Optional gas generator charging system
    Long-life between charges (50% discharge):
    Race offshore for 3 days
    Tacking dual for over 18 hours
    Your competition's crew will run out of energy long before the batteries
    "

    http://www.wdschock.com/boats/schock40/cant_b.php




    I would still welcome a class that was penalised for high cost solutions, and rewarded for lo-tech innovation, but that is my own pet concept, being a poor man.
     
  2. CT249
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    CT249 Senior Member

    As far as I am concerned, yes the same objections apply. "Solar sailing" or solar-assisted sailing is an interesting idea, but it's not what the Hobart is about.

    As an analogy, consider whether you would be happy to see solar-powered electric-assist (or electric powered) streamlined recumbent bicycles in the Tour de France, or solar-powered electric-assist hydrofoil rowing shells in the Olympics. I think most of us would say that allowing even green power is such a radical change that it creates a separate sport, or at least separate events. Of course, when speaking of power in this way we are not talking about banning powered illumination, safety equipment or communications. As in running, cycling, kayaking etc it's perfectly accepted and reasonable that you use power for such things as they are not intrinsically connected to the physical side of the sport as canting keels and powered winches are.

    The sport is sailing by wind, not moving a boat by natural power. The latter is fundamentally different. I also race windsurfers, and in some windsurfer classes unrestricted manual pumping is allowed. That has (1) caused a major loss of numbers in those classes and (2) allows things like "air rowing" that break or bend the idea of what sailing is all about, IMO. Interestingly, the yacht races that allow manual propulsion, like the Three Peaks, remain small events and those I know who have done it didn't enjoy spending hours pedalling yachts through calms.

    None of this is saying that solar boats aren't great, it's just that at some point the gear, aims and techniques become so different that gear of a certain type shouldn't be allowed into established events for gear of an older type, in the same way that cars don't normally race against motorbikes and gliders don't compete against hot air balloons and Cessnas.

    It's similar to the way that windsurfing is kept separate from normal surfing. The fact that both use "natural energy" (wind, waves and manual sail-handling power in one case, waves and manual paddling power in the other) does not mean that competitions have to include both sports. And when windsurfing came along, it didn't try to have rules changed so that it could be included with the normal surfing events.
     
  3. Gary Baigent
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    Gary Baigent Senior Member

    Acciona is definitely a step forward in the IMOCA class; an alternative to the diesel, but is also a step backward in that the green boat's power system and battery bank is heavier than the stinker setup, not at first when the motorsailers are carrying loads of fuel but later when it is burned off.
    All this screwing around to cant a bloody keel.
    In terms of modern performance, the ballasted monohull is finished.
    If you're wanting speed from a monohull you have to think foils, lifting and also righting moment designs.
    There is another solution ... but it is too obvious to mention here in a monohull thread.
     
  4. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    Tims point only sank in for me -

    " powered by batteries that at the end of the race must be at the same state of charge as at the beginning?"

    "Schock 40 uses an electrical system and others do too for their canting keels"


    24 hours of charging by shore power is like having a tank full of diesel .
     
  5. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    =============
    What an absurd comment: you have the pompous audacity to say what the Hobart is about yet the people who actually KNOW what the Hobart is about(CYCA) say Wild Oats is legal. Bloody retro purists trying to dictate whats "right"---Just amazing......
     
  6. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

    Both CT and I know a lot about what the Sydney to Hobart is about - we live at either ends of the race.

    In a couple of weeks, the Wooden Boat Show in Hobart will be in full swing, featuring new and old examples of the Islands fine wooden boat heritage.

    Nothing in the hi-tech, power assisted, exotic material, shiny metal world.

    The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia should indicate the spirit of the original race in its name. But they have sold out to the big money, TV powered, corporate world - and I agree with CT about it not being what the race should be.

    With all due respect, the term 'purists' is an invention of yours Doug. What you should be calling us is 'realists'. We know that if we want to go faster at any cost, we would be in the offshore power boat ranks, the hi-speed wave piercing , Blue Riband boys ( of which Tassie can claim to know about)

    But if the challenge of mastering the winds is what excites you, then the little bit of extra oomph provided by onboard canned power is very foreign to the spirit of such a classic race.
     
  7. Gary Baigent
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    Gary Baigent Senior Member

    The 6.5 Mini Transat yacht racers use ... block and tackle to cant their keels. There must be a few other canters, slightly larger, also using this method.
    If you can't manually shift the keel, (either by cleverly designed systems and winch power) then tough banana, move to some other more sensible (and better performing) sailing class.
    You sound, Doug, with your attitude that cheating by overpowering technology (an advantage others do not have, "Lance Armstronging") is okay.
    Is this a US thing? An historical culture thing?
     
  8. pdwiley
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    pdwiley Senior Member

    I lived in Sydney for years and now I live in Hobart. I think I know a lot more about what people think than you do. When was the last time you lived in either Sydney or Hobart for, say, 3 months or more?

    The regularly expressed opinion down on the Hobart docks was along the lines of, so WOXI came in first, so what. It's not a real sailboat.

    As rwatson says, the CYCA has sold out to big money & sponsorship. WOXI sails because it attracts the big bucks.

    You're a voice of one here, Doug. Perhaps you might stop and reflect a minute on just who is out of touch. And, while you're at it, kindly stop the dragging of red herrings. It's embarrassingly obvious that you want to change the terms of the debate because you're losing so badly.

    So, coming back to a question you've never answered, can WOXI sail in a F5 sea & wind without any engines running, or not? If not, how is it a sailboat?

    It's a power assisted sailboat, and should be in a different class from the pure wind and human-powered vessels.

    PDW
     
  9. powerabout
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    powerabout Senior Member

    so there are Hobart race records for powered and non powered boats if your a purist and a realist
     
  10. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Sh

    -------------------------
    Saying Wild Oats XI is not a sailboat is just plain nonsense-I don't care where you are. You can stand on a dock in paradise and whine all you want but you simply can't change reality: Wild Oats XI is the fastest sailboat to ever sail in the Sydney-Hobart. Wild Oats XI won again this year on pure speed in both line honors and handicap. You can't change that no matter what trash you talk about the boat-it's a fact, it's reality.
     
  11. CT249
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    CT249 Senior Member

    I've DONE the Hobart, Doug, five times - unlike you.
    I've regularly offshore with the CYCA since I was 16, Doug - unlike you.
    I own a boat that I have raced offshore out of Sydney, Doug - unlike you.
    I've worked with the CYCA on the Hobart, Doug - unlike you.

    In other words, I'm on pretty good grounds to know what the race is about, thanks. A much better idea than an inshore sailor from Florida has, certainly.

    I know a couple of the recent CYCA committees, have sailed with others once or twice, and respect them. Interestingly, they all sail fixed ballast boats. I was working with the CYCA when old IMS maxi limit was dropped and I know the sort of pressures that the CYCA committee came under from one owner (ironically, he has since dumped his own canting supermaxi and gone to a fixed keeler) and other areas of the sport, in the question of maxi limits. There was blatant political campaigning by people including PR hacks paid by a maxi owner.

    From what I could see that upper limit was not so much chosen by the CYCA but largely forced on them by other factors (like the IRC) and it and the introduction of shifting ballast and power assist was heavily criticised by many people who DID know what the race is about, like the owner of the top maxi of the time, the two most experienced owners in recent race history, etc.

    As PD notes, I think those against power assist are in a very large proportion of those who have done the Hobart (including a majority of CYCA boat owners, according to eye-witness reports from CYCA meetings).

    You're a complete hypocrite if you attack me for not blindly following the organiser's decision on the Hobart (a race I HAVE done) when you have repeatedly made adverse comments on the decisions of organisers of races and classes you have NOT competed in. For example you have criticised the VOR's decision to go OD. The people who actually KNOW what the Volvo is about (the organisers/owners) say OD is the best way for the future yet like a retro purist you still calls for a return to the old box rule concept. What pompous audacity on your part!
     
  12. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Sh

    Gee CT I'm in awe of your experience and in awe of all your involvement with the CYCA. And according to you, rwatson and pdwilely everybody is against the big boats like Wild Oats. But apparently you guys just don't have much influence at all-I mean for years and years and years Wild Oats XI has raced in the Sydney-Hobart and yet, and yet with the "overwhelming" opinion being that she is just a "power assist motorsailer"-nothing changes!!?? Maybe your opinion just simply holds no water-well, theres no maybe about it...
    And Wild Oats XI is getting ready to try to win again later this year-I bet she will! And on and on it goes year after year, after year, after year...... With all the retro dudes standing on the dock yelling: "stop that cheater motorsailer".
    And year after year nobody but nobody listens........... Howl on.....
    Go Wild Oats!
     
  13. CT249
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    CT249 Senior Member

    Anyone who is in awe of my experience is stupid. I never claimed that it was awe-inspiring. But it certainly does illustrate that my feelings about the direction of the Hobart are based on years of first-hand experience, which is a lot more than can be said about your feelings when you complain about the direction of the Volvo race or the actions of Moth sailors, etc.

    It's seems that there's no small bunch of "retro dudes" who are being ignored, but a wide recognition that canters are not the future of sailing. After all, there seem to be no supermaxis on the horizon (therefore confirming the 100 canting supermaxi as the least successful maxi class for decades), the latest class of big boats (Wally 100s) has eschewed the canting keel, the canters are making up only a very small proportion of fleets in most popular long races, the growth area of the sport seems to be centring on poly dinghies, small non canting sporties and fixed keel Beneteau/Bavaria style cruiser/racers, etc.

    Compared to other innovations (fin keels, light displacement, bendy fractional rigs, dacron and then film sails, spade rudders, wide sterns, you name it) the take-up of canting has been minute. Howls from those who don't race don't change that.

    BTW welcome to my ignore list....
     
  14. motorbike
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    motorbike Senior Member

    I agree with CT, when propulsion is aided by anything but the wind and systems adjusting foils by anything other than man power, then its in a class of its own.
     

  15. pdwiley
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    pdwiley Senior Member

    Exactly my point, despite Doug's best efforts to obfuscate the issue.

    I don't want boats like that banned, I just want them classified as what they are. If they can't sail without power assistance, then they need to be in a classification of power assisted sailboats. The fact that they're not at the moment merely demonstrates that the boats have been successful in finding an area of classification not adequately defined.

    Note that Doug hasn't denied this is true, he merely pretends that it isn't relevant. His privilege but is anyone agreeing with him?

    PDW
     
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