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Slot Stopper
Interested in suggestions / techniques / materials required to put a slot slopper in a swing keel RL....

Rob Pinnuck 25-Oct-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
I hope you realise that such a device is illegal in open class racing. You would do anything to make that overweight piece of lead of yours go quicker. Mate you could put a 15hp engine on the back and you still wouldn't compete with the red speed machine that is Warrigal. Just give it up and wait at the finish line with the beers like a good tender should.
James Shannon 25-Oct-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
I understand the thickest composite plate case gap
I reckon light lexan might also work?
( 3mm thick rubber excrusion used to work well On a Gwen we had years ago)
I plan to run a hem along an edge, fold some glad wrap over the bit in contact with the "attached" plate case side and then glass it on with a few layers of fglass tape and epoxy for a non bulky attachment
When the glass is set I hope I'll be able to put it out of the formed "track" towards the stern( front edge will be captive)
Holding it in at speed but having it replaceable could be done with some contact adhesive thats pretty waterproof but desolvable with some turps.
But let me get this straight, legal for titles but not legal for local class racing? ( might go the medium large tin of adhesive & turps!)
Actually we do put a 15hp on ours for cruising ( they are the same castings as a 8hp - smaller carb/ports) Best we have ever got is 8 knots on the GPS...sails are quicker!
regards wayne
wayne Hill 26-Oct-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper

I have waited all week hoping that someone would ask you for further information to back up your claim that ‘such a device is illegal in open class racing’ but to no avail.

I have searched through various rule books and your class rules and I failed to find anything that refers to a ‘slot stopper’ as being a banned device. The YV asks in their trailer yacht CBH measurement application form the following question: ‘If swing, (or swing bilge), do class rules allow flaps or other devices to block off hole when keel in the down position Yes or No’.

Our own class rules states the following: 'Swing keel division shall be restricted to yachts whose centre cases are as originally fitted prior to 1992'

James could you also explain to me what you mean by ‘open class racing’. Is this different from CBH racing? Someone told me the above restriction was just for National Titles but I understand that swing keel boats use keel fillers at these titles!

I fitted a ‘very originally designed and manufactured’ keel lockdown and filler to my RL in the early 80’s. This was only to keep us close to the stern of the new drop keel RL’s ( Dump Truck and Big Deal) as we were all racing on the same CBH rating then.

When I retired down here in Victoria a few years ago I returned to the sport after many years away I was quite shocked to be told that my trusty old swing keel RL 24 with a 1984 keel filler was rated as a drop keel RL24 because of the following YV CBH rule: 'Swing keel classes with centre case flaps shall apply the same CBH as te drop keel version of the same class. Eg. Ultimate 18'. The Sailing Captain took away my reasonable rating of .725 and gave me a ridiculous laminar flow bulb keel rating of .760.

The reason I am telling you all this is that someone let it slip that you are our RL 24 representative on the YV CBH committee. So I say to you fix up the RL24 CBH rating mess in Vic (NSW uses Vic ratings)! Tell the committee that we have 7 rl 24 s in GLYC here and it appears that none of them want to CBH race! Why don't we compare our Vic ratings with all the RL ratings in the other States?

Alastair Russell 31-Oct-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Oh no. Alistair, that post is simply me taking the piss out of my brother and his mate. As far as the broader CBH rules are concerned, it doesn't to my knowledge apply specifically to RL24s. If the Association wants me to take it up, then I will. My own view is that two divisions are plenty in RL24s, the swing keel CBH is based on the absence of a slot stopper, therefore they should, if possible be taken out when racing against other trailables.
James Shannon 1-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper

Thanks for your reply. Tell me, what was the name of that chappie who played his fiddle from the top of his mast while his marina burnt down around him? It was definitely a fiddle he was playing and not the bagpipes!

Please be aware that you are representing all owners of all types of RL 24s when you are on Yachting Victoria’ CBH committee. Why do you think there was only one RL 24 in this years Marley Point Classic when there were heaps of Castle 650’s and 550’s!

Speak to Bernie and he will tell how the Seaway 25 class association managed to substantially increase the size of their spinnakers without affecting their .725 rating!! Do Queensland RL’s sail off .760?

Alastair Russell 2-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Sorry, that fiddle/bagpipe thing went straight over my head.

I'm not on the CBH committee, I am on the Trailable Yacht committee and I represent the RL24 Class Association, which is responsible for class rules among other things.

I'm really not sure what you want from me. I understand that the ruling regarding flaps on swing keels racing as drop keels applies to Trailable yachts across the board. Do you expect that I will be able to obtain a dispensation specifically for RLs? If so, on what grounds?

I am glad that there are 7 RLs now at GLYC. The Association AGM will be held down there between Christmas and New Year. Right now is the time to put together any proposals you may have as a group to be voted on by the Association and submit them.

I imagine that the Seaway handicap wasn't affected by the larger spinnaker because it didn't make them any faster, as CBHs are largely performance based anyhow.
James Shannon 2-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper

Thanks again for your quick reply and I apologise for any misunderstanding. I am confused too as I was told by Bernie that you were on the YV CBH committee. It also appears that I have been accidentally dropped from the RL 24 owner’s association mailing list as I have not received any newsletters or even a membership renewal form for this new season!

It won’t be necessary for you to do anything regarding my CBH complaint as I intend to take my RL24 out of class. I will submit a CBH measurement application form to Yachting Victoria for a modified RL 24. I intend to make changes to my boat to make it easier for two seniors to race her on triangular type club course and CBH events.

I will keep this web site informed of the changes to my boat and its new CBH.

Rob, I will shortly send in photos of my keel lockdown and swing keel filler. I highly recommend it for safety reasons!

Thanks again James. I think the fiddler was called Nero and the marina was in Rome

Alastair Russell 2-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Alistair, you shamed me into checking that one out. I feel I must correct you again. It seems to be the educated view is that when referring to Nero as "fiddling" they were not referring to a violin, or any other musical instrument for that matter. Ross Corben, I know, will be very disappointed in me, as a once student of Latin, for not knowing that.

.....and you surely know better than to ever listen to Bernie.
James Shannon 3-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
james ilove it when you get involved i think i will open onother bottle of red and if idon't drink it i will put a sot stopper in it
kevin troy 3-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
You're right again. Alistair doesn't listen. I have never said you are the "Masonic Lodge" Rep. All I've said is that you represent the RL24 at Trailable yacht meetings. I stand to be corrected, but Atastair mightn't know that there are two separate committees and I know Lloyd Graham is our RL24 representative on the CBH committee. No doubt Alastair will read this as he has set me a bait with the Seaway 25.

I have searched back in GLYC records and have not found where the Sailing Captain or the club handicapper have ever recorded Para Handy with .760!! Alastair is also aware that the Timpenny 770 has a slot stopper, no class rules, but are given a swing keel rating in GLYC.

So what's the problem?

Bernie Ryan 4-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: In reply to Bernie ( letter No1 of 4)
151 Newlands Drive
Paynesville VIC 3880 Australia Phone: 03 5156 7390

The Secretary
PO Box 71
23 April 2003

Dear Sir

On Sunday the 20 April 2003 I competed onboard my RL 24 trailer yacht Para Handy in a race at our club. All on board really enjoyed the very close racing in perfect weather conditions and we all thought the race itself was conducted and organized in a very competent manner. I was also of the opinion that prior to, during and after this race I fulfilled all the requirements of the notice of race, the sailing instructions and the current AYF Racing rules of sailing 2001 – 2004.

The next day prior to the third race in the Easter series when I was handing in some printed race sheets to the officer of the day I was verbally accosted in front of other members by the Sailing Captain. He wanted to know if I had used a device that would in his opinion have warranted a handicap penalty. I replied that he was getting confused with a trailer yacht CBH requirements and that my boat was entered in Sundays race as a swing keel RL 24.

I am of the view that during this incident the sailing captain acted contrary to the Notice of Race, the Sailing Instructions and the current AYF racing rules. I would like it recorded that this is now the third time that an incident like this has happened in this club and not once have I been allowed the benefit of putting my case before a protest meeting. It should also be noted that item 13 in the Notice of Race document states “All boats entering will be allocated a handicap by the Race Committee”.

In view of the above I request that the committee appoint a competent person or persons who are not interested parties to inspect my boat. They would be required to report back to the committee on whether my boat totally conforms with the relevant RL 24 class rules and AYF safety category 6 requirements. I will supply the class rules and further documentation to justify the use of my boats 23 year old safety and performance improving device.

Since my altercation with Bill Micah on Monday I have contacted my class association chief measurer for further advice on this matter. It is also my intention to write to Yachting Victoria’s CBH committee seeking clarification on this matter and if I can use this often used device also in CBH races. I would also like to supply details on the performance differences between the RL 24 drop and swing keel versions and other trailer yachts. In view of this I would like a copy of Sundays race results so that I can forward it to the CBH committee with my submission.

Yours faithfully

Alastair Russell

Alastair Russell 4-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
awaiting for episode 2
Bernie Ryan 5-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Hello guys, back in 1981 at the National Championships in Adelaide whilst running under spinnakers the guy in front of me sailing a Mk 2 swing keel, broached laid on it side, keel slid back into centre case, inverted, keel came out through top of the case and took the cabin top off; boat sank and was washed up on the shore; crew survived. Subsequently was given a new deck and a drop keel, it is now called Extremist.
If a slot stopper has been invented that also serves to improve the safe operation of the boat by locking a swing keel down, I think the 'rules' should embrace the innovation.
Safe Sailing
Brian Lawrie 6-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Brian. That is a strange story ! I dont recall ever suplying a new deck to anyone, nor ever hearing of a boat sinking, and then being washed up on the shore.
I cant imagine a keel bolt ever letting go to allow it to fall out thru the cabin top. Could this have been a W.A. built boat?
Rob Legg. 6-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Actually, Rob, it did happen. It was your original Tiki II. It was the long distance race of those championships and was blowing the oysters off the rocks. I think they completed the course in about 3 hours, well inside the race record. I was just a little tacker, about ten, but I remember it was a very hot series and Bruce Castles won by 1/4 of a point from Warrigal (someone Perkins), Hide Away, Cavalier, and Dad came 5th in Lowana IV.

A chap called Mike Larsen-Smith bought the hull and put a new deck on it, and changed the name to Xtremist. He competed in the 1985 titles at Rhyll and and 1986 at Brighton Seacliff. I remember he used to smoke cigarettes on beats to windward (everyone else lights up off the breeze).

Brian, to clear that up a slot stopper is a device designed to block the open slot behind the lowered keel mainly to improve performance. As I understand it, racing rules now require keels to be locked down to at least some degree at all times whilst racing.
James Shannon 6-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Thanks James. Mystery solved! Timber boat and deck, no floatation, and it must have had a metal keel fitted later, because origonal keel was timber, and the case sides would only have been 3/16 ply.
That explaines all.
Rob Legg 6-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Keel Lockdown
The trailer yacht keel lockdown device was only a recommendation in the 1977-1981 version of the AYF Rule book and I think that the recommendation must have been upgraded to a compulsory in the next version of that rule book (not confirmed). The 2005-2008 version of YA Racing Rules of Racing clearly states in clause 3.02.3 in the YA Special Regulations Section------ that for safety categories 1,2,3,4,5 and 6 ------ ‘Boats with movable keels or centre boards shall have a positive non friction device which will prevent the keel or centre board from moving in the event of a knockdown or capsize’.

It is very easy to just slip a wire or rope strop over the top of the keel in the drop keel trailer yacht but it is a different kettle of fish trying to stop a swing keel from moving. Most swing keelers use a bolt which is fitted through the centreboard box as high up as possible. In practice no one ever seems to get round to fitting the bolt and in some cases it is a source water leakage into the cabin area in heavy weather

I agree with Brian, the combined keel filler/lock down device should be encouraged instead of being excessively penalised. Keen racers will always fit a device that helps them not only to survive a knockdown or roll over but make the boat go faster.

When a trailer yacht sinks it usually drops down to the seabed. The fact that Tiki 2 was washed ashore suggests to me that that she did not sink as in sunk but was flooded and that the hull floated on the surface in a swamped condition until it was blown ashore. I have always been amazed at the way RL 24 racers push their sports boats to the limit in heavy weather. Is it because they know that if they stuff up and roll the boat in a high speed broach, that the boat will float. I wonder if the race in Adelaide in 1981 was one of these races.

I have to agree with James in his interpretation of the rules. If you CBH race in Victoria at the moment and use the lock down and centreboard filler you will have to race as a drop keel version and cop the ridiculous .760 rating. Since April 2003 I have made the decision to not formally race my boat and I have also waited patiently for the association to correct the rating mistake to no avail. All I have used Parahandy for since then was for twilight social stern chaser races. Even then in these races I used to do plenty of RL 24 PR work by letting other club members helm my boat while I did the trimming. I can never understand why other yacht owners/racers here in Victoria are always picking on and rubbishing the RL24! Do we have a PR problem?

Alastair Russell 7-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Re RL24, I don't have any provision for locking the keel down on my boat. Could I trouble anyone for some sketches as to how others have addressed this ?
John 7-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Alistar, my experience with RL owners is that they do a pretty good job of freely talking up the RL yachts. The RL24s racing performance comes with some compromises in space compared with other brands of yachts and this seems to be a sticking point for families where full headroom and privacy are expected.

I don't think unskilled sailors understand the RL compromise and the RL advantages. Many other yacht owners feel threatened by these long sleek yachts that perform well on a cruise or in a race.

I do believe that the perception of the RL as a racing yacht first and a cruiser second turns off some potential owners. They seem to compare the RL24 to a Cole 23 or Sonata 7 and jump for the weight and volume. When considering cruising I compare the RL24 with Ultimate 18s,Boomarangs and Boomaroos which are much closer to the accomodation standards and price of the RL24.

One thing I have noticed is that there are many RL24dk that were factory fitted and have not or do not race, I bought INMA as a cheap old racer and only use her for cruising. I found it was easier to get a good drop keel version than find a goog Mk3sk for sale. I believe the apparent suitability of the Mk3sk for racing has protected its value for cruising and racing where as the drop keel yachts suffer from the image of being a racing only yacht. I have to admit I tend to advise people to get a Mk3 swing keel if possible.

There are limits that the drop keel presents when cruising but I do not regret buying INMA and I do happily tell people about the quality of the RL users.

I took a Sabre 22 sailer and his kids out, after a short time he started to understand the fun sailing a light fast yacht. His daughter who was nervous about sailing on the Sabre settled into the RL easily. When the time came to pull up to a strange jetty in a crowded harbour, he was amazed at the control provided by the engine in the well and low windage of the RL. You can talk about it all day but doing it with others is the best way to influence their opinion.

greg 8-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
I guess there is an alternative to a filler placed in the centreboard case that might get over both the performance and safety hurdles.
Fitting some stiff but flexible slightly overlapping material strips (thick mylar sewn into sail cloth or 3mm x 75 rubber excrusion ) attached to the hull on the outside via glue, small self tappers and some aluminium strip stops the gurgle effect.
As a hold down, 5mm ss wire attached to the top of the centre board from about the point that the lifting cable attaches ...leading aft and then converting to a 8-10mm specra line that runs thru a good quality cam cleat at the very rear of the plate case .( suspect this is easier on Mk1s with a stepped centre case). Once the board is down line is cleated off ( you can add a fig 8 knot for safety behind the cam cleat and that makes it positive rather than friction ...or so I reckon......how do able depends on n the lengths available) When not in use his lock down bit needs to be tensioned by a run of attached shock cord -other wise it jams when lowering. When cruising no knot means you can run aground with the plate down and some fairly mean damage to the line or cleat or both... but the board does slowly retract...

Tested the lock down at the titles a couple of years ago... over optermistic, too much weight forward, too light a crew (2 in total) a big squall and a jammed spin halyard meant we were knocked down to mast horizontal & further.... repeatedly..
No probs at all with CB retracting it styed down...Once I jumped from the patrol boat to the highside & relased a spinaker full of water boat was happy & rapidly upright again...and not a drop in the cab or cockpit!
(Falling off the front at the time made me think hard about the rear steps & minimalist boarding ladder!)
Its the kind of fun you can have under the watchful eye of the race rescue boat & it has increased my confidence and understanding of the limits and what to do before you find them!

wayne hill 10-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Pictures of lock down and centreboard filler

Alistair Russell 19-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
I don't have the dimensions to hand but I would have thought that arrangement would put a reasonably high tearout load on the hinge line in the event of a bottom strike ?

regards, John
John 21-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper

You are right,the filler was originally fitted as a water flow deflector that also allowed the keel to to be moved fore and aft to balance the boat. The wooden structure around the top of the box was put there to allow me to fit the deeper and heavier mark 2 keel to the mark 1 hull. The mark 2 keel was I think 130 kgs as against 94 kgs.

What is not shown is the 1/4 " thick rubber insersion that was fitted to the base of the filler. I can also assure you that the boat slows up real quick when the swing keel hits the mud and this is well before it has time to over stress the filler! The system also allows one if caught short to remove the top and filler and have a p____

You could fit a strut across the frame to strengthen it if required but I can assure you that I have had no distorsion or permanent strain problems with the filler/lockdown device over the years of use.
Alastair 21-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 
Re: Slot Stopper
Alistair ... hoping to have a look at your arrangement before too long ... audit next week .. fix a few inevitable CARs ... then I can get my head above the water with any luck ...
John 22-Nov-2005    Edit    Delete 

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