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Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade #105399
04/30/07 01:56 PM
04/30/07 01:56 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 712
mikekrantz Offline OP
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mikekrantz  Offline OP
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Posts: 712
First of all, the workmanship by Vectorworks was outstanding. Matt and his team paid close attention to detail and it shows.

The boat/design sails very well. Over the course of the event we sailed the boat in everything from slight chop to 3 foot waves and wind speeds ranging from less than 5 knots to 20+ knots. The boat handled well in all conditions, but it's short waterline length handicapped it in the 20+ winds and bigger wave conditions. On the plus side, it sailed exceptionally well in 15 knots and flat water. It went upwind like it was on rails. Upwind, it responded very well to depowering in the 20+ days by dropping the traveller about 6 inches, raising the boards 4 inches, maxing out the downhaul, rotating the mast in a little more, and easing the jib traveller out to the max. Downwind was another story, we alternated between overtrimming the spin, or easing it off completely, neither method seemed to make any difference on the tendancy of stuffing the bows. They only defense seemed to sail the boat as hot as possible and keep the apparent wind forward. When we tried to sail low and slow, we were constantly fighting the bows from stuffing. I couldn't slide far enough back, I kept running out of boat...

Overall, I think that the boat doesn't fit my particular style of sailing (offshore and big air), but it is a great platform for it's design parameters. I think that anyone who purchases one for the purpose of around the bouy / lake sailing will be extremely happy with their choice. That being said, I think that the current portsmouth number will be falling rapidly, the boat contains a lot more speed potential than the current portsmouth number reflects.

All in all, I enjoyed sailing the boat, and it was fun competing against the numerous male/female and youth teams that probably would not have been as competitive if the event had been held on a larger platform.

-- Have You Seen This? --
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: mikekrantz] #105400
04/30/07 04:36 PM
04/30/07 04:36 PM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 833
St. Louis, MO,
Mike Hill Offline
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Mike Hill  Offline
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Posts: 833
St. Louis, MO,
A big thanks to Vectorworks and Matt for providing the 10 blades to sail last week. I had a great time. The boats turned out to be very different from what I expected. I only wish I would have got to sail them in a little 5-12 weather to get a feel for them in lighter wind. Most every race I sailed was 15-20.

Our team tipped the scales right about in the middle of what most of the teams were running. The boat seemed very powered up for our weight. I only had one race where we had to single trap for a short time upwind.

The build quality was very high on the boats. Most if not all of the redress issues were with rigging issues that were worked out as the week continued. The rigging issues were simple stuff like tieing knots with tales and taping knots so they don't come out.

This is the first boat that I can honestly say I've planed upwind on. The boat was just blazingly fast in the big air upwind.

Downwind they are a handful in the big air. You definitely have to be careful to baby them and be ready to bare off quick when the gusts hit.

I think they are the perfect boat for a person that wants to go out single handed at times and yet would like to also take a crew out at times. Seems like the perfect boat to fit that niche.

The wing mast was a learning experience for me. Unfortunately I didn't catch on to it quick enough.

The boats controls were laid out well and worked well with the factory setup. The lines on the boat were very high quality for a factory setup.

I also believe Matt still has some Alter Cup Boats available after this competition. Boats should be debugged for some happy owner.

Mike Hill
www.stlouiscats.com


Mike Hill
N20 #1005
Re: Alter Cup View from inboard the Blade [Re: Mike Hill] #105401
04/30/07 07:06 PM
04/30/07 07:06 PM

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Quote


I think they are the perfect boat for a person that wants to go out single handed at times and yet would like to also take a crew out at times. Seems like the perfect boat to fit that niche.



Mike:

That is the big reason I am looking at one. Would you say 210-220 is to much to be competitive uni. Two up we would be about 310-320 with 13 grand daughter. Could she handle the chute if we take it easy while learning?

Doug

Re: Alter Cup View from inboard the Blade [Re: ] #105402
04/30/07 07:45 PM
04/30/07 07:45 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 3,114
BANNED
MauganN20 Offline
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why did wouter delete his post I wonder?

Something about the square top acting like a sports car on a wet road.

Re: Alter Cup View from inboard the Blade [Re: MauganN20] #105403
04/30/07 07:57 PM
04/30/07 07:57 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,921
Michigan
PTP Offline
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Michigan
Quote
why did wouter delete his post I wonder?

Something about the square top acting like a sports car on a wet road.


Yeah.. I was actually holding off reading it until I got to work then it wasn't here. now its gone!!!! What am I sposed to do for entertainment!!

Re: Alter Cup View from inboard the Blade [Re: MauganN20] #105404
04/30/07 07:58 PM
04/30/07 07:58 PM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 9,582
North-West Europe
Wouter Offline
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Wouter  Offline
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Posts: 9,582
North-West Europe
I'm willing to write up the same comments in a different post/different thread.

I deleted my earlier post because I think this thread should be about the Alter Cup crews giving feedback on the Blade F16 and it is not for me to write anything in it this early or even at all.

Personally I want to hear the comments of as many Alter Cup crews as possible. All the good and all the bad stuff they found on the boat. Both are equally interesting and valuable to possible customers out there.

Wouter

Last edited by Wouter; 04/30/07 08:01 PM.

Wouter Hijink
Formula 16 NED 243 (one-off; homebuild)
The Netherlands
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: mikekrantz] #105405
04/30/07 08:14 PM
04/30/07 08:14 PM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 548
MERRITTISLAND, FL
Matt M Offline
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Matt M  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 548
MERRITTISLAND, FL
Mike K,

Please come back down and we will get you on one that is properly set up. The event guys purposely altered the recommended settings as I was a competitor. Unfortunately, this defeated the advantages of the wing mast and sail combination. When the mast is set to the sail cut, you can still have a very full sail, but with downhaul and rotation it can be flattened out to fit a very wide range of conditions. The masts as they were set up did very little to depower the boat with either rotation or downhaul and as a result people were running with some extreme settings that made for some pretty ugly mast and sail shapes.

Gina and I were the lightest weight team in the competition by a fair bit. We were really fighting the boat as we managed to keep drawing afternoon race slots after the wind picked up. The conditions even then were not very extreme as we have been out in quite a bit more wind and had no problem keeping the boat fast and flat. This does not mean that if I had a choice between a 20 and an F16 for an offshore distance race like the Tybee I would want a 16 as there is no substitute for bows, but the platform is a little more versitile than you saw.

Now before I get bashed by all you forum freaks not out there, I am merely trying to state that the rig has a lot more versatility than was shown in this event. Some of the people who have run the boat before like the Kids and Hess's commented on how these boats felt mushy and not as responsive.

This event was a long time in the making and I was a nervous wreck. By about Friday I was able to relax enough to really appreciate what an amazing event these guys had put on. This was my first Alter Cup experience and Jake, Kevin, the US sailing guys, and Melbourne yacht club put on a great event. Also, I want to thank everyone who took the time to help with this event set up the boats (Dave, Terry, Robi, Noodle, The Chuck, JC, JW, etc. etc.)and those who came to sail. Kevin, Jake and everyone did and excellent job in making all the boats the same and keepng them running. JC, John, John Lovell, Katie, John Tomko and Tiffany all sailed extremely well and got on the boat and had it figured out in no time. Set up or not their team work and skill determined their placing and was very fun to watch. It was especially cool for me to see these guys on the water and for the first time actually see the boats I make sailed.

Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: Matt M] #105406
04/30/07 09:10 PM
04/30/07 09:10 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 6,048
Sebring, Florida.
Timbo Offline
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Timbo  Offline
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Sebring, Florida.
The one thing I did not understand (well, I understand the logic but I disagree with it) was why, when you have the Blade Expert on site, who could easily tell you where the spreaders should be, how much prebend would be good, etc, and maybe even put on a Q+A period before the practice race, why would you NOT use him for this given that most crews had zero time on the boat??

I realize some may have thought that if Matt were to help set up the masts, then someone might claim he had some kind of unfair advantage. Still, that's no reason to set the mast up wrong, just so nobody has an imagined "advantage". I would trust Matt to set them up for the conditions and tell the crews how to best operate the mast/sail combination, as he has much more invested in the boats performing well vs. winning the regatta.

He was really put in a no-win situation. If he had set up the masts properly and won the regatta, there would be acusations of him setting up the boats for his sailing style.

As it worked out, the masts were not set up right, jibs were poked by spreaders that were not raked back enough and main sails couldn't be depowered enough for the 20 knots because of the spreader set up. But at least all the boats were equally improperly set up so there was no unfair advantage for Matt...just potential customers who didn't like the way the mast was set up!

I was told this came about because last year, they used the Inter 20 and crews tweaked their own rigs, but when they swapped boats, the settings were all different, so it was harder for the crews to adjust to.

Still, when you have a brand new boat and an expert right there...why not use him and the settings he knows that work?


Blade F16
#777
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: Timbo] #105407
04/30/07 09:21 PM
04/30/07 09:21 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,921
Michigan
PTP Offline
Carpal Tunnel
PTP  Offline
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Michigan
Quote

I was told this came about because last year, they used the Inter 20 and crews tweaked their own rigs, but when they swapped boats, the settings were all different, so it was harder for the crews to adjust to.


I don't know how anyone could tweak any of the boats at any of the Alter cups to personal style. I went to some of the planning meetings prior to last year's Alter Cup. There was a clear understanding that you weren't allowed to change ANYTHING other than maybe sheeting angle on the mainsheet blocks. The beach captain this year was the same as last year and he is a quality guy who would not allow any screwing with the rules. Aside from that.. hard to see how anyone could change anything in the rig in the 10 minute change over period.

Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: Timbo] #105408
04/30/07 09:23 PM
04/30/07 09:23 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 503
BrianK Offline
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BrianK  Offline
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Tim,

Your comments are certainly understandable, but the truth is no one was really comlpaining about the boat setup, mearly commenting on it. JC, John, Tomko and most of the top 10 had nealy no time on the boat, and they still raised to the top.

The Alter Cup is about the best sailors, regardless of the boat or the setup. At least thats my impression of it.

Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: Timbo] #105409
04/30/07 09:38 PM
04/30/07 09:38 PM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 3,293
Long Beach, California
John Williams Offline
Carpal Tunnel
John Williams  Offline
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Long Beach, California
Tim -

I've only got a moment to post, but feel it is important to jump in before this goes any further. You have bad information - no teams tuned rigs last year. No tuning has been allowed any of the last seven or eight years for sure, because I was there.

Here's how it works; the Chair and the Beach Captain talk with those who are most knowledgeable about the boats, whatever they are. A tuning range is established, and the boats are put into the middle of that range. No hocus pocus or misdirection. The boats were not "improperly" tuned. They were all set the same - as Jake posted elsewhere, each part of each boat was meticulously measured. The regatta is not about who knows how best to tune a wing mast - it is about who can figure out how to make what they are given go fast. Just about everyone got on that boat for the very first time on Tuesday for the practice race - top three teams included.

Matt's point is (or should be taken to be) that the wing mast and sail combo on the Blade is versatile and highly customizable.


John Williams

- The harder you practice, the luckier you get -
Gary Player, pro golfer

After watching Lionel Messi play, I realize I need to sail harder.
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: John Williams] #105410
04/30/07 09:51 PM
04/30/07 09:51 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 829
Charleston, SC
NCSUtrey Offline
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NCSUtrey  Offline
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Charleston, SC
This event is about competitors, not "possible customers."


Trey
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: NCSUtrey] #105411
04/30/07 10:16 PM
04/30/07 10:16 PM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 12,310
South Carolina
Jake Offline
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Jake  Offline
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The spreader sweep was reduced by 6 or 7mm from Matt's setup and the spreader arm length was reduced by approximately the same length (one hole on the Proctor spreaders).


Jake Kohl
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: Jake] #105412
05/01/07 01:36 AM
05/01/07 01:36 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,718
St Petersburg FL
Robi Offline
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Robi  Offline
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St Petersburg FL
I think Matt's main point is, if you all think the blades were fast, imagine setting the blade up to your particular weight and sailing style.

Fly baby fly! Good job duders. :thumbsup:

Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: John Williams] #105413
05/01/07 03:56 AM
05/01/07 03:56 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 6,048
Sebring, Florida.
Timbo Offline
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I don't know what happened last year, I only know what I was told. Certainly you want all the boats to be set up the same, especially since they are being swapped after every race. I was told there was a problem with the jib hitting the spreaders. I've never heard of this on the Blade before and asked why Matt was not allowed to help tune the masts. I was told because he is a competitor that would be unfair. There is some logic there, but that is no reason to -not- use his advice when he is also the builder of the boat and has the most time on the boat. I can see where it would be implied that he had some sort of secret knowledge if he were allowed to tune them himself, and if he were winning every race. Would it have been done differently if he were not racing? If you are going to set all the masts the same, as they should be, why not do them all to settings that he knows will work? Or would that be considered unfair?

I would think you would want to get the most out of the boat and the more complex the boat/mast is, the more mast settings matter. Or why not just do the Alter Cup on Waves if you are worried that some class expert is going to have an unfair advantage?

So next year, are you going to -not- use -known- settings on the Capricorn masts? If the US Importer comes to the event and says, "You should do it like this..." are you going to throw that information out and use something else, because he is a competitor in the event?

And I'm not trying to diss anyone, I know it's a huge amount of time and effort to get all the boats set up, I was just surprised that the builder was not allowed to help out more. I would think you would want his help, since he is responsible for the boats well being. And any problems that arise are going to reflect on him and his product.

Maybe in the future, the builders (or importers) shouldn't be allowed to race, that way they can tune the boats for maximum performance and not have to worry about anyone thinking they have an unfair advantage.

All I am trying to say here is maybe the jibs wouldn't have had holes poked in them if they used Matt's settings.


Last edited by Timbo; 05/01/07 04:40 AM.

Blade F16
#777
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: NCSUtrey] #105414
05/01/07 05:20 AM
05/01/07 05:20 AM
Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,348
F
fin. Offline
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Quote
This event is about competitors, not "possible customers."


That's beneath you! <img src="http://www.catsailor.com/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" /> And it isn't even rational. If Matt had won the thing, or even done extremely well. The tendency would be to say the boat is only for light weight crews or those with "special" knowledge. As it is, the record is very clear. Matt turns out a great product and the Blade is one hell of a boat!

Last edited by Tikipete; 05/01/07 05:24 AM.
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: John Williams] #105415
05/01/07 06:01 AM
05/01/07 06:01 AM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 9,582
North-West Europe
Wouter Offline
Carpal Tunnel
Wouter  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 9,582
North-West Europe

John W.

Can we seduce you to post your boat report (containing both the good and the ugly) when you have caught up with family business and lost sleep ?

Ohh, what was your combined crew weight, that would be interesting as well.

Additionally, does anybody know if we can get some of the other crews like the youth to make up a report ?

Wouter

Last edited by Wouter; 05/01/07 06:03 AM.

Wouter Hijink
Formula 16 NED 243 (one-off; homebuild)
The Netherlands
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: fin.] #105416
05/01/07 06:05 AM
05/01/07 06:05 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 829
Charleston, SC
NCSUtrey Offline
old hand
NCSUtrey  Offline
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Posts: 829
Charleston, SC
How is this beneath me. Once again, this is the Alter Cup, not the "Let's sell more F16's Cup." Setting the boats up as to alleviate any chance of a claim that they were set up to a particular sailor's style or preference was the only way to go about this. If you are too dense to understand that, then you need to step back and look at what the event is truly about. In the end, it is about the competitors and their ability to sail the boat given to them faster than the other competitors.
I have no doubt Matt built some great boats; that is not the point of my comments though. Your statement has no base, let alone any thought in it. Once again, wasted text...
I'm going to class now, maybe you and Doug should go sailing.

Last edited by NCSUtrey; 05/01/07 06:10 AM.

Trey
Re: Alter Cup View from onboard the Blade [Re: John Williams] #105417
05/01/07 06:21 AM
05/01/07 06:21 AM
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 9,582
North-West Europe
Wouter Offline
Carpal Tunnel
Wouter  Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 9,582
North-West Europe
Quote

Matt's point is (or should be taken to be) that the wing mast and sail combo on the Blade is versatile and highly customizable.



Actually this point makes both sides right and we were all just a bit unlucky to get such challenging conditions for the event.

If the mast-rig combo is so tunable then there is certainly an argument to be had about having only one setting for all crews. Otherwise one crew good indeed stumble on a "good fast in high wind" setting and nail the race. And lets not forget that is not uncommon for racing crews in round robin formats to mess with the boat settings before handing it over to the next crew. I think the Alter Cup committe has a strong point in keeping everything identical. In making this choice you have to decide on which settings to use before the racing starts. So what do you do ? Go for some average (10 knot) setting.

If the weather had been 7-14 knots then I'm sure the chosen mast setup would have been fine. Maybe some could have be gained by retrimming but that would only be speed oriented and not control oriented. As indicated by Mike Kranz in his quote :"On the plus side, it sailed exceptionally well in 15 knots and flat water.".

Indeed on practice day they had 8-12 knot winds and everything was fine till for the real races it got up to 14 to 20+ knots. Matt and some other crews know what can be done to adjust the boat to these conditions by some retuning but within the Alter Cup round robin format this really can't be done. Nor would that have been fair to the crews new to the boat.

I guess Matt and VWM, naturally looking to achieve the best showcase for their boats, simply got a bit of bad luck here with the winds piping up. Despite their best efforts.

Afterall you don't really want to sail a F18, A-class or Tornado in 20+ knots wind with its 10 knots rig settings either. This is just the nature of modern racing boats.

So interestingly enough both sides of the argument are right.

But indeed the interest of the Alter Cup fairness of racing could only take precedence over the business interest of VWM. Still I don't think the reports are too shabby despite this small conflict of interests.

Nor should any of us fear critical reports. No boat is perfect and if the bad points are (as of yet) only encountered in big winds and on one specific course when you are not retriming then I think we should be quite pleased with that ! <img src="http://www.catsailor.com/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />


More reports please !

Wouter

Last edited by Wouter; 05/01/07 06:38 AM.
Re: Alter Cup View from inboard the Blade [Re: ] #105418
05/01/07 06:32 AM
05/01/07 06:32 AM

A
Anonymous
Unregistered
Anonymous
Unregistered
A



Hi Doug,

sometimes this Forum can be a worry, this thread is turning sour when it started so positive <img src="http://www.catsailor.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" />.

But anyway, in answer to your question regarding weight to be competitive one up, I have sailed one up F16 exclusively for 3 seasons at around 200 lb. and been competitive. On F16 hulls much smaller than the Blade. I think the F16 one up is the boat for BIG BOYS <img src="http://www.catsailor.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />.

Think about the jib it is not very big, so one up crew weights similar to the lightest two up crews should be competitive, most of the power is in the main and spinnaker as long as you are sailing windward and returns.

With 2 ratchets 13 year old should be able to handle kite if she has the attitude, I have sailed against and been beaten buy a two up F16 with a 11 year old boy crew handling the kite <img src="http://www.catsailor.com/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" /> mind you their two up weight was not much more than mine, in fact I was most competitive against them in stronger winds. <img src="http://www.catsailor.com/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />

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