RL24, RL28, and RL34 Trailable Yachts
from Rob Legg Yachts

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Upright or not
This question is for the racers. I have been reading Racing Basics by Mark Johnson in a link from Trailer Sailor Place which was enlightening. In the article he says to always sail a boat as upright as possible. I have been told to always have some tilt on the RL24 (upleg) especially in light airs. Johnson is emphatic about sailing a flat boat. Is this because he is mainly talking about dinghy racing and does some lean help the RL because of its flatter hull profile. I have been told that the RL has less wetted surface when on a lean. Solving this mystery is directly linked to Wed a/n Rum stocks.
Nomad8-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
sailing in light airs
Most keel boat sailers allow the yacht to heel moderately in light conditions so that the weight of the boom and sails holds the sails in a reasonable shape with maximum draft.

In light conditions, starting on a reach and heading up wind as boat speed develops to take advantage of the apparent wind moving forward is the traditional way of getting some movement. I am mainly a cruiser so strategies when racing may vary.

I did see the American J24 world champion sail in very light conditions about 10 years ago. His sails looked a bit like an un-ironed shirt as they leaned the boat over eased everything and showed everyone a leason in sailing. The rest of the fleet never really caught up after they established a lead and kept a handy speed advantage with the rest of the fleet for the race.

I suppose all boats are different but in light airs, I am happy to let it all hang loose, lean to leeward and try and get the sail's tell-tails streaming. If that fails, then the engine is a nice accessory.


Greg8-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
Boat heel.
Nomad, I have been arguing with my Dad, who has incidentally won 2 National Titles, about this subject for years now. My view is that the boat, except in light airs, should be sailed dead flat and with neutral helm whilst Dad says that some heel with a small amount of weather helm is best. Weather helm is that feeling in the tiller that the boat is always wanting to point further into the wind. I think it is fair to say that you should try to sail as flat as possible but a small amount of heel (ideally not more than 15 degrees)in an RL24 is unlikely to hurt. Bearing this in mind, Dad gave me an old fashioned flogging at the last championships but I am looking forward to the rematch.
James Shannon8-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
Thanks Greg & James James - Johnson in his discussion somehow manages to agree with both you and your Dad.
Nomad9-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
Light weather sailing
Nomad. I fully agree with James and Greg but would like to add that we used to find that in the real drifters , packing your crew forward and with one sitting rirht up on the forward birth made the boat a lot more sensitive on the helm and got rid of a lot of wetted surface aft. Hope you win that bottle of rum.
Rob Legg9-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
Thanks Rob

Got pipped into 2nd by a #$@# Blazer on the Noosa River yesterday a/n. Lot better than our customary 2nd last. Can almost taste that elusive Black Champagne.

Nomad - Apache

Nomad10-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
I Knew a Blazer owner

In our club a few years ago we had a bloke who raced a Blazer. He decided to reduce his boats displacement by taking a bit off the bottom of the keel. In his next race he flipped her!! I am sure he used to drink imported Bicardi rum!


Ps When going to windward in light airs I will throw my hand in with the down by the nose and slight heel people. You should have low rig tension and low hailyard tensions with the jib sheeted inboard and boom in the centre line with mainsheet up the track to windward. The mainsail outhaul, downhaul and vang should be slack with ringles in the luff. You must have of course a Norths fully battened main sail with a loose foot. I would go with a 40 litre can of fresh water in the anchor well if the sea is smooth. You can use the water to weaken the over proof rum after the race. You should now be that fast you can have a rest and a XXXX going downwind and still be in front of the Blazers
Alastair Russell25-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 
Thanks Alastair
We have those Blazers that fall over up here as well. The advice is working. Got a 1st on Wed a/n only to have the race called a no race because the starter was at the bar and missed a dozen boats completing the 1st lap and consequently sent everyone round for an extra lap. Had to administer extra rum rations to get over it.
Nomad25-Jun-2004    Edit    Delete 

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