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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Boat Review and Purchase Forum > What makes a good light air boat?
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Thread: What makes a good light air boat? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
10-14-2009 12:05 AM
SiXeVeN
Quote:
Once you start seeing numbers approaching 17 and above you are getting into a more performance oriented design
My Stiletto has a sail area to displacement (SA/D) of 48.86! If I fly the spinnaker it soars to 112.2!!!

How's that for a wild ride!

Don't ignore the power of the dark side
10-13-2009 11:39 PM
LyleRussell Getting the crew weight to leeward hasn't been mentioned as a technique on any boat.

I like a J/30 for your purposes. They have lots of room ,bunks for 5 adults and the rig is easily handled. You can get a good one for less than 25k and have money left over for fresh sails and a DIY bottom job.
10-13-2009 10:49 PM
DrB
One more boat that does well in Light Air

To the OP,

I know that you said that you didn't want to go over 32", but with a bunch of kids and wanting to do the occasional weekender, you will need the room.

Look at a Pearson 10M (33'). On paper it looks like a slow, fat boat. It's 33' long, has a 11' beam, displaces almost 12,500 lbs, skeg rudder, but...... the thing is pretty quick. If you get the tall rig (can find one) your NE-PHRF is around 135 AND you can get it for under $25K. The standard rig is 140ish as a PHRF. It's got pretty good creature comforts and is roomy below.

Yes, you can find a quicker boat in this length range, but all aorund it won't have everything the 10M has for the price.

Disclaimer - I own one (Tall Rig) and routinely kick ass on boats much larger than ours. I crew on J105, and while it is faster than the P10M in light air, it is spartan below, very low head room and tight even though it is 2 ft longer and the same beam. I imagine the J32 will be similar.
10-10-2009 09:08 PM
mccary
What makes a good light air boat?

The answer is simple: The skipper & crew! Some boats seem to spring forward while other identical hulls appear to be anchored. Of course a clean bottom and a modern fin keel and loads of sail will all help.
10-09-2009 04:06 PM
bubb2
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewMac View Post
bubb2 - thanks for the input. Reading the different comments here, it seems that, if one were in 3 knots of wind with a 130 headsail on roller furling and noticed that the leech was curling, it may well make sense to take in some of the head sail in order to reduce drag in the slot and create better airflow across the back of the main.

Btw - I hope you don't misunderstand my questions to mean that I think a different boat will compensate for the (rather considerable) holes in my sailing skills! I am very much hoping to build those skills in order to have more fun in whatever I boat I find myself in.

Thanks again!
Andrew

reading some of the comments along
Andrew, I run a 110% jib on my boat. It does well in light air and does well in heavy air. It will out point a larger sail. For the in between days is what a Asymmetrical is for.

I am not trying to say boat numbers are not important. However, what you might give in light air performance may give you stability when it gets snotty.
10-09-2009 03:37 PM
AndrewMac bubb2 - thanks for the input. Reading the different comments here, it seems that, if one were in 3 knots of wind with a 130 headsail on roller furling and noticed that the leech was curling, it may well make sense to take in some of the head sail in order to reduce drag in the slot and create better airflow across the back of the main.

Btw - I hope you don't misunderstand my questions to mean that I think a different boat will compensate for the (rather considerable) holes in my sailing skills! I am very much hoping to build those skills in order to have more fun in whatever I boat I find myself in.

Thanks again!
Andrew

reading some of the comments along
10-09-2009 03:01 PM
bubb2
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewMac View Post
Thanks for all the responses. Very helpful. Bubb2, while i know you were being a little tongue in cheek with your initial response, it was actually quite helpful. I find that I frequently get impatient in lighter air and do not let each adjustment take hold as you suggest. And JeffH's comment about the high drag a large genoa creates in the slot is not something I had previously been attuned to - always assumed that, in fact, bigger was better in those conditions. Jeff/Bubb2, I'm assuming that you mean winds that are 5 and below? I guess I'm asking at what point do you think the incremental lift of the genoa becomes accretive (ie greater than the incremental drag)? I'm sure there is no hard and fast answer, but wondering if there are metrics you would use as a general guide...thanks!

IN 5 or less a large genoa will curl. Looking more like a spinnaker than a head sail. You are trying to get as much airflow across the back side of the main as you can with the headsail. A headsail with curled leach, that is not going to happen. If you use a smaller head sail not as much curl will occur and thereby the slot opens up.

I not going to get into boat numbers because a well sailed slow boat will beat a poorly sailed fast boat every day.
10-09-2009 01:59 PM
Brucerobs2 I have also used this one to compare various boats, which might also help answer your original question. I think its been posted here before but scroll down to use the calculator. More info than you probably care to know. Have fun.

Sail Calculator Pro v3.53 - 2000+ boats
10-09-2009 01:34 PM
AndrewMac Hi all - so after getting people's feedback on my initial question on this thread, I have been busily calculating SA/D ratios (want to thank fud for supplying the equation) on different boats that I am looking at. I then started trying to figure out how to calculate the Wetted Surface Area as a number of people referenced that criterea as another critical determinant. For what it's worth, I came across this link which delves into methods for making the calculation in some detail (actually, a lot of detail - still trying to decipher it :-)) - thought I'd post it here in case it's useful to anyone else.
Wetted surface area - approximate formulas - Boat Design Forums
10-08-2009 02:52 PM
blt2ski I got which a few of us in my club use, a 130 nylon drifter. it is about 130% of my fortraiangle area, higher cut on the clew. catches zephyrs of air very well vs my 155 string Fiberpath sail. 0-6 the drifter works well, 6-8 either, above 8 the 155 is best. Some have a really light 155, but I'm not as positive they work as well as the 110-140 ish nylon sails. Mine is a heavy spin cloth. I use 3/16" sheets too.

Marty
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