National 12 - find out more...
 

They're Talking About Us Again!

Started by Martin, 19 Jun 2008, 01:37

« previous - next »

Martin

Interesting debate on Y&Y Forum about "which classes will survive"  Comparison made about how Merlins have competed successfully against RS400s and how N12's have fared less well against RS200s.  See http://www.yachtsandyachting.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=4308&PN=1&TPN=5

THG

Couple of quotes - to save going through the whole thing
Then of course we have the poor old N12 that is struggling against the RS200 which gets huge turn outs.
 
It's a shame that the N12 has been a bit of a stick in the mud at important
points in it's history on both counts, this is leading to there current
difficulties.<!-- Signature -->
THG

Antony (Guest)

Two comments by ex-12 owners, so i guess interesting for that reason alone. 
They come from very different perspectives as i understand their points of view. I assume that Rick recognises the difference between the restricted class (Merlin) and the development class (12, Cherub, I14 etc) as he is in the business.  Darrel has always believed that we did not develop fast enough, hence he bought a Cherub, whereas the Merlin example suggests we should never have developed at all!
Very complex issues, as we all know and appreciate.
Antony

tedcordall

However, despite being 'restricted' the Merlin has developed at least as quickly as the 12, what with carbon everything, twin poles, big poles, big kites etc.
 
An interesting point is that most of the Merlin sailors that I've seen around seen to be under 30. Is this connected with them being seen as a lairy beast? Why aren't the slightly lighter versions of these people sailing 12s? Those who want 'well lairy' sail Cherubs and those who want 'less lairy' sail 200s.
 
Perhaps, as someone said earlier, we need to ask how these people perceive the 12, and what it would take to get them to have a go.

rick perkins

I am not sure there is much difference between the restricted Merlin and the development N12 rather than semantics, not in the eyes of the average RS200 sailor anyway ...
I think it's a shame where the N12 is; I like high tech, quality and fine design but the N12 has eveolved into a niche where by you need to be very light to compete ... I very much enjoyed sailing our 12 but we are over 21 stone so we could not compete. Plus I like big fleets and sea sailing.
I think you guys need to come up with a recovery plan before the decline becomes irreversible.
I would have thought the NS14 offeres some inspiration.
 
 
regards,

Rick

N12 3490
________________________________________________________________________

Wedding Invitations
Contemporary W

philipcosson

The N12 should be an attractive package because it is prettier, lighter, smaller than an RS200 (and a merlin)
The negatives are: it's more expensive to buy new, you need to be light for an adult crew, it has no spinnaker.
It's a 12 foot boat - the weight thing is tricky to solve - but carbon helps! Another suggestion is to develop a single hander handicap and allow single handed sailing at club level.
There is a tension between protecting investment and development. But while development is a possibility, some clever person could reinterpret the rules and come out with a winning design - which would get everyone to shift. The problem is that recently, any idea that has been discussed has met with the response 'thats not what the spirit of the rules mean...' and the impression the rule set is getting ever tighter. Perhaps secrecy is the answer - just do it in the current rules and turn up at burton week and reveal all!
It should be one of the cheapest ways into sailing, because constant development should devalue the boats fast and make them affordable (even cheap!) But see point above, there is definitely glass ceiling between single and double bottoms.
The spinnaker is easy to solve really - allow it for club racing and develop a new handicap. Keep it out of open meetings. And it is a retro-fit to any boat that could be DIY or a kit supplied by Aardvark, P&B etc. (new business for the sail lofts as well) - certain hull designs would be better for spinnaker, thus probably spurring on development.
It would be a very interesting (and novel) proposition if the N12 was a) pretty b) light c) small and d) flexible (solo, crew, crew with spinny)
Phil
Philip<br />ex N3367, ex N3253

tedcordall

"He's a heretic.....Burn him, burn him....". 
 
While I personally wouldn't want a spinnaker, the only thing I could take issue with are the comments about weight. Take 10kg out of the boat and you instantly have 10kg more crew weight available. Not a lot but a start.
 
The  argument for not doing this seems to be about protecting investments, but I can't see that. I'm sure the top 10 boats at Burton week are all carrying more lead than this (I speak from a point of ignorance here, but all new boats seem to be 10-15kg underweight), and at club level nearly everyone is handicap racing so losing some weight can only be a good thing. The only people who lose are those 12s with no lead who are racing those currently carrying lead.
 
In a development class, surely there should be no 'spirit of the rules'. The whole point is to use imagination or a bit of lateral thinking to move the design on. If, subsequently the class decide that a particular development is not in the interest of the class as a whole, then the rules get changed. (cf daggerboards.)

Kevin

"Take 10kg out of the boat and you instantly have 10kg more crew weight available"
Sorry TC, this is wrong, ask any designer who knows what they are about. The lower the hull weight is the lower the crew weight needs to be to be really competitive. If the class wants to be attractive to over 21 stone crews again, we should be considering putting lead back into the boats and INCREASING the minimum weight.
Kevin

Antony (Guest)

This has been stated many times before, and at the last AGM and recent Forum.  The class sought expert opinion on the weight question and was told that the only three ways to make the boat carry more crew weight were:
1.  A longer boat.
2.  A narrower boat.
3.  A heavier boat.
The people that provided this opinion were respected dinghy designers, sailmakers and others that have an amatuer interest. in such debate.  I have no expert knowledge but was convinced by the logic of their conclusions.  IF there was an easy solution to the low optimum crew weight and the increasing weight of the human race then we would have already implemented it!
Antony

tedcordall

Fair enough. I can't see the logic of it myself since the overall weight of the boat/crew package doesn't change, but bow to those with greater knowledge! I'll go and find a tame naval architect to explain it to me.
 
(It appeared to me that if I took the lead from under my thwart and strapped it to my back then the boat wouldn't perform particularly differently, other than I would have more righting moment.)
 
As Confucius once said, "Ignorance is only bliss if you keep your mouth shut".
 

Roly Mo

Rather than looking at the factors mentioned as being 'constricting' we should view them as what makes the 12 special.  I will sail at Norfolk in Pie Boy mode with ICM, sailing with some 25 stone in the boat.  We hope it will be windy!  At Hykeham and YOSC I had my flyweight crew and we came in at 15 stone and I'm glad it wasn't windy.  I sailed at Windermere with about 18 stone in the boat and flew.  One of my boats has lead, I suspect that the other weighs well over the minimum (her certificate says so) but to be frank it doesn't matter at all to me.  What matters is having fun and sailing a boat which makes it so.
I sail 12's because I love the designs, the way the boats handle etc.  This year I've been racing an RS200 as well and havn't enjoyed that at all - I've found it an incredibly boring and numb boat to sail and it's made me realise just how much I love my 12 sailing.  Ellie and I have also raced our Mirror and whilst it's fun we both enjoy the space which the 12 gives us.  We use the spinny in the Mirror and whilst we enjoy that there is no way I'd want a spinny on the 12 - if people want to sail a 12 foot dinghy with 3 sails they can always buy a Cherub.
We need to recognise and accept that we are not the same as other classes and stop trying to emulate them.  Let's live up to the 'dare to be different' slogan!
RM

rick perkins

Seems to me you guys have no appetite for dealing with the decline of the class ...
regards,

Rick

N12 3490
________________________________________________________________________

Wedding Invitations
Contemporary W

tedcordall

Oh, I think I see. The boat would perform better if I just threw the lead away, and then better again if I was thinner!
 
With the lighter boat you could have a heavier crew for the same performance, but the optimum crew weight for best performance would fall. Is that it?

rick perkins

Quote from: Antony (Guest)This has been stated many times before, and at the last AGM and recent Forum.  The class sought expert opinion on the weight question and was told that the only three ways to make the boat carry more crew weight were:
1.  A longer boat.
2.  A narrower boat.
3.  A heavier boat.
The people that provided this opinion were respected dinghy designers, sailmakers and others that have an amatuer interest. in such debate.  I have no expert knowledge but was convinced by the logic of their conclusions.  IF there was an easy solution to the low optimum crew weight and the increasing weight of the human race then we would have already implemented it!
Antony

What about more/bigger sails?
A 12ft Skiff carries loads of weight ... if you don't want to address this and leave the class on it's current path then why not just say so ...
regards,

Rick

N12 3490
________________________________________________________________________

Wedding Invitations
Contemporary W

THG

I think the boat is pretty much as it is - we need to accept it and find ways to get more of the boats sailing.  Having said that why not pass a rule to fix the weight for say 10 years and then look at the rule book and chuck out any silly restrictive rules that don't make much difference - example Meds' new boat isn't the problem above the waterline (??) that has no impact on hull speed (to the untrained eye it still looks like a 12 :o) - but the new design seems to be going well?  No radical changes then - would be a restricted class like the Merlins but I do think we have had more radical design changes in the last few years than the Merlin class has (maybe wrong...)
Other traditional classes are still being succesful - one of our Solo guys at the weekend (has Solo No 2 ;D) went to the inlands and there were over 100 boats.  Why do we have inlands in November?  Make the inlands in the summer when maybe those with family crews may be more likely to come to a weekend event.  Also the Solos have a training programme - the same guy is a coach and on the Friday did training.  I know some of our training sessions have not been well attended and doing training on a working / school day is difficult for families.  Hykeham was a good event - family friendly and a good example maybe to build on this to promote more attendance for next year.
BW - keeps coming up - maybe just to stuck on Burton week rather than National 12 Championships with the Burton Cup as a premier race.  Could we do a poll where we put in a number of options say 1-5, if everyone has to vote for each option then could we get a clearer view of what the Class will want to attend.
Should we organise more events around 'common' classes like the Fireflies / Ents - cost of travelling is increasing - if Clubs want to see enough return for holding events then multi Class may be the way to go (even some Nationals are run multi class aren't they on the same course??).  Is there even an opportunity to create some sort of group (like TASA) for 2 sail hikers - Firefly, Graduate, Ents, 12s, Albacore (?) are all pretty similar and often Open turnouts are relatively small - but this would boost the social side of things - which is sort of what boosted the RS classes to get mixed RS fleets.
If we all talk doom and gloom then isn't that self fulfilling? :P  Some changes are needed but its far quicker to change the way we do events than changes to the boat itself.
Complex issues as Antony said but a bit of radical thinking may get more boats out.  Now can I fit in a sail this weekend???
 
THG

n12 Bottom Banner

  Back to top