Discussion in 'Laser Talk' started by 2latez, Apr 29, 2010.
One thing you need to take in to account is where you are going to sail. The inland weight for a Full rig starts at around 70kg (that is compeitive in all conditions except when it is howling).
There is a guy at my club who is 70 kgs (around 155-160lb) and he is good in all conditions, he is a reasonable sailor in terms of ability. Were we sailing on the sea then I would say he would be sailing a radial because he just would not have the physical ability to drive the boat through the waves. Inland on flat water it is fine.
Personally I would look for a boat with both rigs and use the full when it is light and the radial when it is heavy. If you are as fit as you make out then you will find you will be able to handle the full rig in higher winds than someone who was not as fit.
It is quite a predicament. I am an adult sailor so i'm not getting any taller but because of my body type i am extremely powerful and can easily put on muscle (5 years ago i was 89kg/189 pounds) and i was out lifting guys that were over 6'0 and 100kg/220 pounds. Its just scientific studies(statistical only) on laser sailing are suggesting that weight is really a non issue but height is - so the only way to know for sure is to ask peoples opinions who actually sail the boats.
My previous sailing experience is 4 years of sailing a 2 man trapeze boat which is a cross between a dinghy and a skiff so i am used to fast and furious sailing and in terms of pure speed a laser is going to be a downgrade in performance.
Where i will be sailing, within 30 minutes of driving i have access to 6 different sailing clubs some inland some open water where i mainly will be sailing is on a river mouth normally 3 races back to back on a normal sea breeze with morning tides the 1st race will be normally around 5 knots the 2nd will normally be 7-12 knots and third would be anything up to and over 20 knots with white caps there is a big tidal current which can produce swells even in the lighter winds if that makes a difference.
The best thing for you to do is to ignore what you read on the internet - just go to the club you'll be sailing from and look at the weights and rig choices of the sailors you'll be competing against. Then choose the rig that others in the 70-75kg range are using at your club.
It's fine being underweight in a full rig if the rest of the fleet are in the same situation, but you don't want to be the lightest full rig sailor or the heaviest radial sailor. That way you'll get the most from the competition.
From the typical wind conditions you describe, I'd expect that anyone under 80kg will be in a radial. Most top male radial sailors around the world are between 72 and 78 kg.
"The best thing for you to do is to ignore what you read on the internet"
"...Except for what I post."
Lol Good times .....
I am 5'8" and weigh 155 lbs. I sail almost exclusively in a full rig and am very competitive. Second and third the last two years across our weekly series (5 months long). I sail weekly night races and small New England Regattas on a very large lake and some small lakes. Our wind is usually somewhere between 5 to 15 mph. In the lighter air and current conditions you suggest, my opinion is that you absolutely will need a full rig. One thing I haven't read yet is that in those conditions, your weight is an advantage. Your full rig will power up sooner than those of the big sailors simply because it is carying less weight. There's a magic wind speed for me between 7 and 10 mph where I have boatspeed that others simply can't find because I am light.
That being said, the boat gets to be a lot of work at 13 to 15 knots. My bigger competitors sit out comfortably while I hike as hard as I can. It does get exhausting. I bought a radial rig last year due to this. Over last season, I determined that I preferred the power in the full rig and learned to handle it. I can't keep the boat flat, it probably doesn't look super pretty, and I work my ass off. But, my race results are better when I stay in it in winds up to 18...particularly if it is gusty. I'm a windsurfer and have always preferred power that I can spill if I need to. We like to say go big or go home. If the wind is steady 18 and over, the radial is the way to go for me.
One night in particular illustrated this perfectly. Forecast was for 15 to 25 mph. I rigged the radial. First couple of races, the wind was 7 to 15. The fleet walked away from me. It filled in for the last few. Solid 18 or 20 mph probably. I won one of those races and got second or third in the others. I was the only radial rig on the course. So, radials will compete with full rigs for undersized sailors, but only if it is blowing hard steadily...in my experience.
Nah, I don't know anything about anything so I'm the last person you should listen to.
Actually, I'm probably the second last - remember that Shatty fella who used to post here? He knew even less than me.
Just wondering, have you competed at any of the following:
If so, how'd you stack up against the fleet in breeze?
The best season I ever had in FR (when I was 17), I was 5'10, ~180 lbs. I used to pride myself on being a pretty good heavy air sailor and really enjoyed hiking/grinding it out.
When the wind came up, it was funny to see the small guys who had been at the front of the fleet before now getting rolled off the start and having a pretty uncomfortable time going upwind. On the other hand, it was nice to see my own results skyrocket. I still wish I had another couple inches to get over the side, though.
I know quite a few very good Laser sailors who weigh in the 170s, but I don't believe any of them are under six feet tall. Most of them are also in phenomenal shape for hiking.
I'm not the one that said to ignore advice about SAILING, on a SAILING website and then proceeded give advice about sailing.
I don't think I've ever claimed to know everything about anything, either.
May I have your attention please?
Will the real sailor Shatty please stand up?
Don't we all.... I think you can get a pill for that.
Getting a little touchy there! Upper case even. Ouch.
For what it's worth (admittedly not much), I was well aware of the irony of my original statement. Unfortunately irony is wasted on the youth. And Americans, but that's a whole different discussion.
To spell it out, my point was that the most important thing when choosing a rig is the local fleet and local conditions. People on the internet (including you and me) will say things like "< 78kg = Radial", which is good, general advice, but ignores the local factors. If there are only full rigs where 2latez sails, sailing a radial by himself makes no sense. If his local Kiwi fleet is an aberration and uses a ">70kg = Full rig" covention, he should go with that.
I think we need rulers to measure up over here. (Or yardsticks for me.)
The laser fleet here is pretty small so i will need to find out what everyone else is sailing but if i rule out the full rig it leaves me with 2 choices of boats to sail i wonder if anyone here might be able to maybe give a prediction or some advice/performance ability on which may be a better boat to sail for me just from descriptions of both boats obviously i am going to have to talk to people who actually sail the boats and make a comparison
Sail area 62 sq feet
crew weight 121-159lbs
planing ability yes ?
NZ Zephyr Class
Sail area 76 sq feet
crew weight 148lbs-165lbs/65-75kg (any one over 75kg is considered too heavy thou lots of people are)
planing ability yes
The zephyr class was designed as training boat to get sailors into the finn class effectively it is very similar shape/design but requires much less crew weight essentially a light weight finn this really seems to be the only choices of single handers available with significant numbers any opinions on this would be very helpful ........ my guess would be the zephyr being wider would be more stable but might not point as well but has a lot more sail so area maybe faster ??? any ideas
Does the Zephyr have a real traveler like the Europe Dinghy (like a mini-Finn)? If so, it will point like a dream. I had a Europe, and it was stable and pointed very well. Also harder to capsize than a Laser and easier to right.
I'll post some photo it does have the traveller in the middle of the boat
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