yet another mono/tri question

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by HeavenBound, Jul 16, 2009.

  1. Richard Woods
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    I agree with Phil, and would have said it, but didn't want you to feel insulted.

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs

    www.sailingcatamarans.com
     
  2. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    =====================================
    I grew up racing a really neat boat called the Windmill-it was tippy-wouldn't stay upright at a dock,planed upwind and was very fast for the 60's. After that I spent several years designing and sailing small high performance trimarans basically a 14 footer weighing 80lb(in several versions) and a 20 footer. The little boat was as responsive as any boat I ever sailed and would NOT allow you to sail poorly. The big boat would. Both were tremendous fun and I think the statement above is far too broad. It really does depend on the DESIGN-you simply can't categorize all small tri's as "not very good for improving your sailing skills-they lack responsiveness and feed back-they allow you to sail poorly". Just isn't true.
     
  3. catsketcher
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    catsketcher Senior Member

    damn

    I had hoped to get that one through without a bite but I think Doug you would agree that a mono MAKES you sail better than a Hobie or similar. Maybe this is not the forum for it but you can sail a small cat in an inferior manner to the typical mono dinghy and it won't put you upside down as much.

    This can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on how you look at it. If you want to get better at sailing I would suggest going the mono road first. If you want to have fun and not get right into the whole sailing thing (and what is wrong with you if you do that!) then go straight into beach cats.

    The Tasar is one of the nicest boats I have ever sailed - a beauty - and the feel of driving one upwind is just the best. They have the nice compromise of being twitchy enough for the has been and easy enough for the beginner. I know Frank Bethwaite somewhat and talked to him about his HSP. I never got to sail it but my brother did and it was a blast - it was sort of a tri and sort of a thin crazy 18ft skiff with floaties. That was a fab boat.

    Okay I will hijack the thread completely now - I used to live where Frank tested his HSP designs. Every year I would see him flailing aroud with some crazy rig and stange design that would hardly ever move and then invert. In the end he went simple and designed the HSP tri - fab, fast and surprisingly unpopular.

    On another note on my cessation of Laser sailing I got into Tornados. In our first regatta we placed 5th (Oz titles) and never got close to capsizing. I found it rather boring eventually as there were few boats to race against and close boat to boat tussling was hazardous. When I hit a port tack boat on a beat in 15 knots I hit the water so fast it hurt and the bow imploded. Later I sailed a 49er. Whereas the Tornado was easy to sail the 49er took all of the skills I had just to stop capsizing. At the end of my first sail with a very good skipper (multiple NSW Laser champ - 3rd worlds) we could not stop laughing and fell in about ten times. It was the most fun I had had in years. One taught me little, the other well - I was building a cruising cat and couldn't commit to the 49er. So I sail the Tasar and dream.

    But I did have the pleasure of sailing a Windrider for a week or so. Now they are a hoot and fab for camping. What about getting one of these or building one of Marples designs - great boats. I am also into sea kayaking and they can't get the idea of outriggers. The windriders are like kayaks with proper sails.

    Sorry for the kijack

    Phil
     
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  4. masalai
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    masalai masalai

    catsketcher, I cannot add to your excellent suggestions and guidance, Learn the ropes on a mono (fast dingy) then eventually, through a progression of experience gained knowledge, eventually you too, HeavenBound, may graduate to a proper boat (a cruising cat or racing tri)...:D:D:D:D
     
  5. bad dog
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    bad dog bad dog

    Hey Catsketcher

    You are so right about different boats being able to teach you different things. Ok - so a boat can't teach, it can only provide the opportunity for us to learn - but you know what I mean.

    The Tornado is big and predictable, the 49er light, narrow and sketchy. My old A-cat is (relatively) heavy, gentle, predictable, lovely to sail in edgy conditions. But is it still challenging me? I thought I was a pretty accomplished A-cat sailor till I got on one of Mark Johnson's all-carbon Mark Vs...

    Wild, sketchy, twitchy, unpredictable, all the things I wasn't quite ready for! But what a flaming hoot!! I'm still half way tempted to try to wind back some of my 53 years and learn to master the lightweight boats, or admitting all of my 53 years and staying with my old darling (which still wins races very occasionally!). And that's just two different boats in the one class - add totally different boats to the mix and all sorts of different things open up.

    So the point is - sailing a variety of boats is definitely the best way to polish all round sailing skills. Sailing one boat exclusively develops specialist skills at the potential exclusion of others, which may in fact help us sail our chosen boat faster.

    In a past life I used to make surfboards (70s) and found great inspiration and ideas in other water disciplines - and even other design streams altogether. Some worked, some didn't.

    Learn some skills on Boat A, understand the principles at work, try to apply them on Boat B and see what happens. It's what innovation and invention are all about!
     
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  6. rayaldridge
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    rayaldridge Senior Member

    I can't disagree with anything Phil says, but I think there may be an attitudinal divide here that bears examination.

    Phil, I would guess, belongs to the cohort of sailors that see sailing as an athletic challenge sufficient unto itself, and there's nothing at all wrong with that. But there is another large cohort of sailors who see sailboats as a particularly pleasant way to be out on the water. The latter group tends to buy cruising boats which pose little risk of capsize, and they don't have much interest in racing dinghies.

    This thought occurred to me during a thread on a another forum regarding Michael Storer's slick little raid design-- a narrow box boat with a fair amount of sail. One of the first to be built capsized during the Texas 200, a raid-like event, and while the skipper was gathering stuff that had fallen out, the boat righted itself and sailed away without him. He had to pay a substantial salvage fee to get the boat back.

    To truncate a long discussion, the upshot among the experienced dinghy sailors was that a sailor who wanted to participate in such events ought to take the time to learn about the boat's capsizing characteristics-- how to deal with a capsize in the most efficient and satisfactory manner. In other words, practice capsizing a lot, because it was inevitable.

    I probably shouldn't have, but I ventured an opinion that maybe easy capsize wasn't something one should happily accept in an ideal open boat cruiser. I even went so far as to suggest that perhaps it might be better, if one was intent upon a skinny hull and lots of sail, to make two even skinnier hulls, and space them apart enough to vastly increase the stability and vastly decrease the likelihood of capsize. Probably this sentiment fell on deaf ears.

    At any rate, my point is that if, like me, you see sailboats as magic carpets designed to make being on the water as pleasant and rewarding an activity as possible, you might well be happier with a small multi than with a tippy fast monohull, however superior the latter might be in teaching sailing skills.

    I believed this so strongly that I designed a small cat even less challenging to sail than a beach cat. The boat is still lively, tacks smartly, goes well to windward, and provides a largely anxiety-free platform for learning not just how to sail, but how to cruise.

    That's another set of skills entirely.

    Anyway, the best boat depends on what the original poster wants. If he wants to be a hot dinghy racer, so be it. If he just wants to get out on the water in a stable little boat with a fair turn of speed, he might enjoy something like a Marples 3 meter tri or a Windrider.
     
  7. HeavenBound
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    HeavenBound Junior Member

    Well, I thought this thread was done, but it appears to just be getting warmed up.My wife insists I tell you she LOVES the Taser, ( as crew) I however feel that with a jib/ gennaker she will be equally happy on a multi-hull. In fairness to Phil, my skill level would increase on the Taser, but I just love the things about a multi-hull that a mono can't give. Probabably the greatest is the speed with the stability. Just this week I got up on one hull for the first time, and what a rush!!!!! To be able to be "on the edge" and still have total control is an amazing feeling. This past week I also learned of some guys( yes most of them Australians) who sail Formula 14 cats, so this got me to thinking again. Instead of just a 30 sq. ft. jib, go for maybe 90 or so. This would require a bow sprit and some other modifications (dolphin striker, new stays, redo forestay etc) So ..... at our local sailing club there is a Dingo cat. He has a aluminum tube between the two hulls at the bows and the forestays(the two smaller ones) come into it on an angle( 45 degs approx) and then straight down to the tangs on the hulls. Is this there to absorb the compression of the stays pulling on the hulls??? Has anyone else seen this type of set-up?? Does it work well?? The Dingo has seen better days and I think it could help most multi-hulls if this is right.WES
     
  8. masalai
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    masalai masalai

    I doubt you could justifiably call it "total control" but I get your drift - shall we agree on, - - - 'a temporary balance twixt skill and luck... producing a "good rush"'?
     
  9. HeavenBound
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    HeavenBound Junior Member

    I guess I should clarify my sailing past. My dad built his first sailboat(a Dart) when I was about 8 yrs old. I began sailing solo by the time I was 12, and got into racing at a provincial level when i was 14(Petrol aluminum boats). What happened when I got my first car, was a "need for speed". So it's almost full circle to be back to my roots in sailing.
     
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  10. bad dog
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    bad dog bad dog

    "...perhaps it might be better, if one was intent upon a skinny hull and lots of sail, to make two even skinnier hulls, and space them apart enough to vastly increase the stability and vastly decrease the likelihood of capsize. Probably this sentiment fell on deaf ears."

    ...nope!

    Re the Dingo cat and its compression beam (how embarrassing - I'm an Aussie and never heard of this one before! - but then it probably never made it here, seems to be a USA-only design)... I had a (pommie built) Catapult until recently, and had converted it from a cat rig to a skiff rig (ex 16'), which necessitated a sprit and compression beam, bridle, etc etc. I used an aluminium architectural louvre blade - sharp elliptical hollow section, which produced virtually no drag when the bow went through a lump of chop. It was very slender - about 115mm x 20mm, so I fixed a couple of diamonds (stiffening cables over vertical spreaders) on it as well.
     
  11. HeavenBound
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    HeavenBound Junior Member

    Thanks Bad Dog for the info. It seems that the more sail , the more reinforcing is needed. I'll incorporate one on my 14.
     
  12. kim s
    Joined: Apr 2009
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    kim s Junior Member

    skills

    oooohhhh i like this thread. Please let me stick my oar in.

    Having sailed 49s laser, venerable old flying dutchmans etc, and then a Tornado and Hurrican 5.9,iand also skippered large yachts ,is to compare a multihull to a mono is chalk and cheese. Might as well compare a dinghy with an offshore blue water cruising yacht. The skills required are COMPLETLY different.
    Yes a sail works in the same manner but the attitude has to be different.
    Flop a dinghy over, and your back up and flying in seconds. a multihull takes a tad longer. Therefor more skill reqiured to keep a cat on the edge.
    Different skill setts and different mental attitude required.

    OK--- oar in and -------relax

    Kim
     
  13. HeavenBound
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    HeavenBound Junior Member

    I have to agree that different boats do teach different skills. It's been 2 months now and I'm still learning how to come about with only a main sail and do it as smoothly as I can on any mono hull I've ever sailed. As for the comments about a Windrider, I would LOVE one, It's the 13,ooo plus dollars that is holding us back. Used ones are pretty hard to come by around this part of the country, so we continue to dream about other Trimarans.
     

  14. catsketcher
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    catsketcher Senior Member

    build your own

    You don't have to buy a Windrider - they are heavy and expensive but heaps of fun. If you are going to the hassle of making floats etc then I would suggest an email to John Marples and getting something that you know will work and will sell if you want to go down the tri route.

    cheers

    Phil
     
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