Is the New Ovi Deck Mould a Bit Lighter….??

Way down on the FF Measurement Form, on about Page 8, is a box for “Measurer’s Remarks”…..  None of my previous FF’s had anything written in there before, but I happily received a new boat in late September and this is what the Measurer had recorded on Page 8…

“New bonding process and new deck mould appear to provide a better finish and bring weight down slightly  i.e. slightly more correctors added versus similar boat fit out – still within tolerance rules requirements…”

Hmmm – 19kgs of lead aboard – twin waterlines, but no deck paint or floor paint…..

Aesthetics Versus Performance……!!

It was has always seemed to me that one of the delights of FF ownership is how fabulous the whole thing looks. Don’t you agree?

So where do you stand on waterlines??  I was told that the really cool thing to do to lower your turning moments and keep your hull weight down is to despecify waterlines on the order and have a plain white hull.  That’s a pity I think.  To my taste, the plain white hulls don’t appeal quite as much to me.  Furthermore, I’m told that the ultra cool thing to do is to have a translucent hull, with less ‘white’ in it.

It is some years since the late Dave Ovington gave me a good talking to about having grey non slip deck panels.  “That’s another 2 kilos of paint right there spread right along the length of the hull.”  I’ve had white decks ever since.

I’ve just had my fourth fifteen delivered.  My previous boats have all had vaguely grey blue floor panels which look great.  I hadn’t thought to specify it, but number four has turned up with a white non-slip floor.  I can hear the late Dave’s voice now… “That’s one kilo of paint right there…”, but I have a nagging feeling it doesn’t look as good.  The boat was very light at the weigh-in though.

I also admit I have a double waterline and probably always will !!!

Where the Weight Should Go……

An anonymous correspondent has a theory on your latest posting (largely based on someone telling him why they did it on their home fitted out boat).

The boat is so underweight that you need to place large heavy lumps of metal in the boat to bring it up to weight.  But the weight of those bits of metal is limited, so you don’t call them correctors, you call them re-inforcing, at which point they become free !.  Back in the days when correctors were carried at the extreme side of the boat (rather than in the middle), this had the advantage of getting the weight further inboard.


FF Weight – Does It Matter?!…..

Does Weight Matter?

I sail a silver boat, 28 years old and maybe a little past her prime, but, she sails well, does OK in club events and I love her, so, well how do I go faster.  On a beat, she is superb, on a reach equal to the opens but on a run, that’s where they get me.

I have gone down the usual route, learned to sail, tuning the rig, revelations about sail control and settings, polishing the hull and foils,  making  good tactical decisions (Usually!) so where next.  It’s got to be the weight of the boat, this winter I noticed that the floor decks were frozen!  It took almost a month for them to warm up in a cold garage, so there must be water in there = excess weight.

The boat is an Amos so if you know the type then you may remember that she has floor tanks in the crew area with drain bungs on the back of them.   These were long gone and instead the tanks were full of foam, so this must be waterlogged.  I set too with some keyhole surgery, a homemade ‘chopper’ for the drill and a jet wash.

The statistics are interesting, initial chopped foam weighed 8KG, more chopping took out another 5kg then a further 2kg, more came out with the jet wash but I didn’t weigh this, estimated another couple of kilos. So at least 15kg of wet soggy foam came out of the floor.  She is an old boat and a bit weak in places so I re filled the tanks with about 3kg of expanding foam.

So this got me thinking and I started weighing everything with the idea of reducing as much weight as possible, see table below;                                                  (The ? marks are estimates)

……………………………………………….Was                             Now

Wet foam ………………………………15kg                              3kg                                    Dry foam

Wooden/ epoxy Rudder ………..4.82kg                           3kg?                      Epoxy foam rudder

Wooden floor panel………………..2.25kg                            1kg?               Resin and foam panel

Wooden Tiller…………………………1.3 kg                            0.6?kg                       Carbon Tiller

Metal tiller extension……………..0.21kg                           0.05?kg                   Carbon extension

Spinnaker pole……………………….0.90kg                           0.30?kg                     Carbon pole

Wire Kicker…………………………….0.12kg                           0.02kg                     Dynema kicker

Old total…………………………………24.6kg                            7.97                                    New total

So potentially I can save around 16.63kg obviously at a price of course so back to the original question ‘Does weight matter?’

Well so far all I have done is take out the wet foam, I raced on Sunday and actually it seemed to be much better on the runs, outpacing the next FF though I need more sailing to say for sure.

Whether the cost would justify the extra 4.5kg left to come out I doubt it – but I did say that I love her!!!!

Malcolm Hall

Ivan on the Carbon…..

Happy to back Phil on this one, having laid up the 15 laminates myself, I suspect for the first boat the carbon skin was added after the hull had been laminated conventionally, meaning the laminate needed wetting out afresh. With a conventional inner laminate I would be expecting to use about 9kg of resin, hence the weight gain.Once Ovi’s were content with this technique the carbon may well have have been laminated at the same time as the rest of the inner skin making for little weight gain.
One of the advantages of carbon in my experience is that it takes up less resin for a given strength.

Ivan Coryn

FF Towing Vehicles….

It’s funny how some articles in the blog attract comments and some don’t…  Can you guess which blogs in 2011 attracted most comments??  The ones about cars….. ha!!

So it was with some interest that I read the article in the January edition of Y&Y (published in December, page 68) headed “Vehicles for Towing”. It’s a good article – look out for it.  They cover all the major issues to look for. It turns out that quoted weight towing limits for cars are for a specific incline, namely 1:16 or 6%.  However, on an incline of 15%, which is 1:6, what happens to the maximum towing weight? In their example, a Saab, it falls from 1600kg to 1000kg – blimey….

Why all the fuss? Well, how steep is your slipway??  At our Club, our friendly convention when the water level is low is that first team out get the car and pull the whole fleet out. Our slipway at low water levels is pretty steep – and we recently reduced a brand new Volvo estate to a clutch smoker resting at the top of the slip….. (I hope it has recovered, Ian!!….) The last part of our slip is probably a lot steeper than 1:6….

The article also mentions that some car models, especially small cars (Ford Ka mentioned) have no type approval for towing….. I didn’t know that.

The weight of an FF Hull, keel, rudder and mast is around 330kg I think. I don’t know the weight of an FF trailer do you? (Ian Preston will know…)  Y&Y suggests an SB3 trailer is 215kg, so lets suppose an FF trailer might be 170kg. Then allow maybe 30kg for kit, as proposed for the SB3. So we might be 530kg all up when we tow… Better keep that number in mind….



Top Ten Gear Guide 2011…. Do Fatties Go Faster?!!…..

We’re part way through preparing the 2011 Top Ten Gear Guide for Yachts and Yachting. Still awaiting a couple of replies, but quite a few things are clear…..

Two thirds of teams use end-to-end poles for example…. and more than three quarters (78%) prefer spinnaker bags to chutes… and for sail makers, Goacher Sails took the top 3, but P&B also showed well. (Unlike the Worlds, the Nationals were a blowy event, remember…)  Everyone uses an Epsilon – but remember that Graham Vialls and Chris Turner took the Worlds with an Alto Section mast – and P&B sails…. And with the exception of Charles and Gavin, the top ten sound like a one design Ovington Fleet!!!

However, it was the team weights that caught my eye. Some while ago I was chatting with Alan Bax, and Alan felt that maybe the optimum weight was creeping upwards. I’m not so sure looking at 2011….

For a long time we have said that the boat will carry a wide range of crew weights from 22 – 30 stone, and often the optimum has been said to be 27-28 stone. Well, in 2011 that is still the case…. Our average helm weight is just over 13 stone (84 kg), and our average crew weight is 14-15 stone (95kg).  Remarkably most teams though are just a kilo or two away from a 178kg mean total – which is 28 stones.

During Hayling’s windless days, there was hilarious chit chat about whether it is better to have the fat at the front or the back….  Well, out of 8 responses, 6 had their fatties at the front , and 2 at the back – so just possibly the big guys are best at the front end…!!

You can read the top ten gear guide by clicking here