What sailing needs, and what the world needs from sailing

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Skyak, Jun 8, 2013.

  1. Skyak
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    Skyak Senior Member

    the picture is a bit off. The luff looks like less than half the boat length, but it will be 6 foot. I hope to keep this luff length because 6' is the limit to 'standard shipping'.

    My target sail area is 14sf but honestly I would love to add more. The limitation is the righting moment of the kayak as a monohull. I don't know how much experience you have with kayaks but if you are judging based on other boats you will be way off. The positive is that kayaks take very little to push in displacement mode ~3lb thrust, so the need should fit the limit. Comparing to what is currently offered, 14sf is big. Upwind kayak sails are mostly about 9sf and the 'large' ones are only 16sf -meant for tandems and trimaran setups.



    My sail has a much lower center of effort and the MSTAR is beamier than most kayaks so maybe I can up the area. Actually, I originally designed the rig for the purpose of determining how much sail area I wanted on my 14ft kayak. The more I thought about it, the more interested I got.
  2. WhiteDwarf
    Joined: Jun 2011
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    WhiteDwarf White Dwarf

    Little people are big business

    Every sporting organisation knows that it's future depends on getting kids involved. The big sports businesses are in league with big media. They don't want participants, they merely want fodder to turn into money machines AKA fans.

    The big sports send their "stars" into schools, this attracts the jock element of the school community and peer pressure does the rest.

    Sailing needs to offer better... We don't have the money to compete with TV stars. We can offer a substantial package - build boats, learn to sail, and become part of an active community. A which respects young, as well as older participants. We also need boats which are easy to store as so many people now live in apartment/units. If you don't have other space, a boat stored at home must stand on it's transom at the back of a car space. That restricts the length to about 8 foot.

    We need 8 footers for youngsters, better boats than Optimists, but 8 footers too for adults, boats that can be build at home to involve the whole family. My club, Concord Ryde SC will hold a regatta next year to challenge designers to improve on the existing 8 footers, and yes, we will again be encouraging kids to build and participate.

    What we must do, is convince the so-called leaders of the sailing community that "Olympic Glory" and the associated classes can not provide the package we need to offer kids, or adults. We must stop wasting funds on Olympic classes, costly one-designs which stifle development, and bring sailing back to the community, in workshops and backyards.

    The TV build of one Mirror dinghy launched 70,000 boats. With the internet, good leadership in the sailing community could surely achieve the same, again.
  3. Skyak
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    Skyak Senior Member

    you are preaching to the choir about media and social priorities missing the value of sailing -I could not agree more. The only thing you might be getting wrong is the Olympic focus. The problem is not the sailing community misdirecting resources, what is happening is outside money coming from national pride via the Olympic committees is earmarked for Olympic classes and simply overwhelms the nothing that is being offered to promote sailing at large. That is what is happening in the US and frankly US Olympic sailing is an embarrassment in terms of US medal performance. I don't know what things are like down under, but I suspect that you will not have much success with what sounds like a "bite the only hand that feeds you and follow me!" plan.

    I applaud your little build and race regatta plan. It sounds like great fun to me. I posted a number of ideas on your thread. What I really agree with is the need for a design that minimizes racing "campaign cost". I am dedicated to that goal.

    Where I broke off from participating in your regatta as a designer was the square monohull box focus. My box does not offer anything outstanding compared to the pride the builders will have in THEIR box design.

    You have the organization and the place to work. I don't have that to offer so my focus is on minimizing the hurdle to owning a sailboat. MSTAR is the entry level. I figure once I get the sailors, and they have mastered their craft, I could offer an upgrade that would turn their boat into a high performance wing dingy. As I told you on your thread, it would fit in your storage space limit. Speaking of storage limitations, the next design after the MSTAR upgrade will be one that disassembles for storage and transport -including on buses and planes. Can you imagine the cheap fun that would be offered with 30 sailors/busload from cities in the region? Or a national championship that everyone could fly into with their boats?

    I see the home-build as an activity that a sailor turns to after he has significant experience and ideas of what he wants and not such a good tool for producing more sailors. Consider the investment and the return, the potential sailor has to put in the money, labor, and build space months before he gets the return of sailing fun. I agree there is fun anticipation in building in the performance, but if you don't have the sailing experience how do you know what to expect? My plan is to put the butts in the boats first, get them on the water having fun, then be able to say 'for this low price you could have your own boat and all these activities available'. The MSTAR costs the same as a season pass to the neighborhood swim club. The sell should not be difficult.

    So you have your plan and I have mine. Is there something we can do to help each other? I think we can help each other by developing the education materials sailing needs to address one big problem and one big opportunity. The problem is too few people know how to sail, and the opportunity is to sell sailing as a great educational program.
  4. messabout
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    messabout Senior Member

    Sharpie2's Coal car does not need amas if it has 36 inch chines. It may be ugly but it will sail far better than it looks. The 36 incher will also carry more sail than is drawn on the sketch.
  5. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member


    Hadn’t considered that.

    Never been on a kayak.

    I suppose the three biggest problems are:

    1.) getting adequate sail area,
    2.) having adequate stability for that sail area, and, most important,
    3.) keeping the rig from interfering with the paddler

    I did once came up with a scheme to put two Boomed Lateen sails on a kayak, one over the fore deck and one over the aft deck. The Booms and Yards would all be 5 ft long and the masts would be of similar length. The yard would have a 4:1 pitch (rise/run). This would give two 11.13 sf sails for a total of 22.2 sf of sail area. Since the Booms don’t interfere with the skipper, they can be set very low over the deck, for a Vertical Center of Area (VCA) of around 2.5 ft.

    (I still hadn’t figured out where I was going to put the pesky leeway preventer. I did consider having the paddler hold a paddle down on the windward side, to act as a dagger board, but thought it too fatiguing.)

    The beautiful part of this scheme is the sails could be trimmed against each other, to set a course relative to the wind. This could eliminate the need for a rudder.

    The ugly part of this scheme is that it would require six spars: 2 masts, 2 yards, and 2 booms.

    It would also require at least six blocks: 2 halyards, 2 sheets, and 2 turning blocks. At least 2 cleats would be needed as well, not to mention 2 mast steps. There would be a whole lot of cutting, screwing and gluing going on.

    The ‘Triyak’ scheme seemed like a better deal.

    More sail area and less modification of the kayak.

    On good paddling days (when there is no wind) the rig can be removed in a matter of minutes and left ashore.

    So now the kayak effectively becomes two different boats in one: a straight kayak and a paddle assisted double outrigger.

    Last year you bought the kayak. This year buy the sailing rig and have a sailboat too.

    Judging by the number of kayaks I see on roof racks these days, this might be a way to add a whole new group of sailors, with minimal investment on their part.

    As for your idea; you need to move the leeway preventer further forward.

    It is far better to have it way too far forward (especially on a narrow boat) than a little bit too far aft.
  6. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member

    If you want to attract people to racing, you have to be a Nazi about keeping costs down.

    A few years ago, I read a piece by Mike Storer bitching about the high cost of being competitive in the 'Optimist' class. He said it costs about 5k for a proper boat and sails.

    He designed a more fine lined pdracer which is now referred to as an 'Oz Duck'. The design was so good I ordered plans myself. The hull weighs about 55 lbs and it boasts about 80 sf of sail.

    What he limited was:

    1.) a minimum weight for the hull,
    2.) materials the mast can be made of, and most important,
    3.) the materials a sail could be made of, and limits on its shaping.

    Pdracers are 8 X 4ft boxes with curved bottoms and are definitely designed to accommodate adult sized displacements.
  7. Skyak
    Joined: Jul 2012
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    Skyak Senior Member


    The idea of the MSTAR is a boat that paddles well and sails well and can switch from one to the other in seconds ON THE WATER. It is not intended sail and paddle at the same time because it is just too short and beginners can't be expected to do two things at once. My 14 that I will test on might paddle sail -TBD. Those sail kits for kayaks in the links I posted are for paddle sailing, they never put the paddle down and they use the paddle to stay upright. Those are 17ft kayaks ~$3k to $5K without the sail and they have a cruising speed of 4N vs the MSTAR's 3N. It's interesting to note my 10 boat MSTAR regatta costs the same as one kayak sailor. The other distinction is that in the MSTAR you work the sheet and steer -like a proper dingy -not cleat the sheet and use the paddle to stay upright.

    The other thing to consider is 'How much of the common sailing dingy's sail area is for sailing when there isn't enough wind?' If the wind is blowing 2 to 5 mph do you really want to go sail to the horizon? ...or do you just stay close for fear the wind dies...or do you skip it and drink your beer on shore? With the MSTAR whatever the conditions the answer is GO!

    My laser has a big sail/weight, but I don't bother with anything less than 10mph wind because that's what it takes for the fun to justify the work of rigging the boat. 20mph wind is enough to scare me out of sailing it because the gusts will put it down and I will be black & blue before I an done. Now look at how often the wind is in that range and you see that even a great boat like the laser does not get much sail time.

    About the MSTAR sail area and the lee boards, I corrected the mast length in the picture to the 6ft intended and the boat now looks like a sailboat. The center of the sail is behind the center of the lee board or a 'negative lead'. But as you said, a strong weather helm is desirable on a beginner boat and the rudder is oversize to easily keep control.

    I got to thinking about MSTAR sail area, there is no reason it couldn't have multiple sails for different winds and different user weights. The mast can be extended with a telescoping plug in the end of the mast. If I expect to cover users from 80 to 250lbs I will need to offer different sail areas.

    About your sailing kayak ketch -there are beautiful old canoes with that setup so it does work -Rushton comes to mind. It doesn't appeal to me because of the need to tend 2 sails, one of which I can't see behind me.

    Your Triyak is not a bad idea, in fact it too is being done and the name of the company is Triak... see http://www.triaksports.com/

    About the sailing rig with a paddle -I have a design like that. It's essentially a sail that hangs from the top of the paddle which is hung vertically over the side of the kayak. I called it the 0 and the MSTAR the 1. It may be a nice thing to have in the kayak for when the wind kicks up, but I don't consider it a sailboat.

    By the way I think the PD racer effort is great. If I was going to build a box sailboat, I would be sure it was PD class legal.
  8. Kim Cullars
    Joined: Jun 2013
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    Kim Cullars New Member

    I remember taking my 2 1/2 year old nephew sailing in an antique wood catboat years ago. At first he was scared, then he resigned himself to the idea that maybe it wasn't going to be so bad. When we got back to shore, he ran around telling everyone that, "He went walking on the water!"
  9. AZboatbuilder
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    AZboatbuilder Junior Member

    from [ Roman Empire .. 120' steel sailboat ]

    Youth wants to play with others their own age , for the lack

    of RULEs , Sailing takes them away from their peers ,and distracts

    them from their burden of trying to learn how to LIVE in a

    complicated system , city .

    But everything will change soon ( Roman Empire cycle )

    , their will be shortages of everything , and then they will

    glue their eyes ,and wills to their fathers , building

    boats to find places where shortages are LESS SHORT .

    Its a TIME thing , we are still in the END of an era of

    excess , and waste . In 2014 , ya get a peek !

    Asia is the most stable , and prosperous , and peaceful

    place on earth , Says Marco Polo ! he delayed return to

    report to his authorities , for they raised him to a god , for

    his MIND , his intellect , his creativity , things that many

    here , have , yet go begging for a place to apply the creativity .

    I'm a Scientist 69 YO , i do everything for myself , by myself .

    It works real good .

  10. Skyak
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    Skyak Senior Member

    Maybe the kids are alright...at least some of them. Check out this group traversing Baffin Island on skis and traditional style SOF kayaks "qajags".

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