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A neighbor at my marina is preparing to launch his Hunter 310, originally purchased last year. As we were talking I looked at the wings on his keel and noticed that the starboard wing was canted down while the port was canted up. The total difference at the wing tips is less than 1.5 inches. My neighbor was concerned that this might cause a problem. I suggested to him that, on his boat, the different angles would probably not make a noticable difference. And since he sailed for a season without complaining there probably is no concern.

Aside from being a sign of poor workmanship, can anyone provide any input on how these unbalanced wings might affect performance, if at all?

Thanks
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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I am not specifically familiar with the keels on the Hunter 310 but in general wing keels are designed to minimize their drag and to direct water aft along the keel bottom to improve the efficiency of the shorter foil length. If one side is canted up or worse yet, one side is down and the other up, drag could be increased dramatically.

Beyond that, 1.5" is a lot of offset. (1/4" inch is a lot) It may actually refelct a more serious problem such as a missing keel bolt on the wing. The boat should be under warrentee and it should be checked.

Jeff
 

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Nigel Calder stated in a recent Ocean Navigator article that the origin of wing keels (I like to refer to them as wing dings) was to skirt the racing rules for the Americans Cup boats. He also made the comparison of the current breed of wing keels to that of Bruce anchors. I would guess that the Hunter you spoke of might take a better set when going aground on one tack better than she would on the other. Seriously, no one buying such a boat from this manufacturer should be totally surprised by this latest revelation!
 
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