Print Page | Close Window

Solo Bloody Solo

Printed From: Yachts and Yachting Online
Category: Dinghy classes
Forum Name: Dinghy Yarns...
Forum Discription: Tell us your sailing stories
URL: http://www.yachtsandyachting.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=13310
Printed Date: 17 Sep 19 at 10:08pm
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 9.665y - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: Solo Bloody Solo
Posted By: iGRF
Subject: Solo Bloody Solo
Date Posted: 20 Apr 19 at 11:24pm
Now don't all laugh at once, but I've bought a bloody Solo in a moment of madness from a chap of my acquaintence who desperately needed to sell and remove it from his drive.

There's an Easter regatta down the lake so I though I'd give it a spin, if I like it I'll keep it if not, I'll move it on, at least that's how I convinced myself to exercise the No of boats I should own formula of N +1. I was also a little the worse for wear alcoholically speaking when the chap rang up.

So it was I now find myself racing a bloody Solo.

How anybody bigger than me does it I don't know, the chap that preceded me looks like he's heavy with unborn child. I'm not surprised he's thinking of giving up sailing all this passed through my mind as my foot slipped on all the gubbins in the middle and i fell back the wrong side of it thereby inducing my first near swim. A dry capsize but now the boats full of water and that was pretty much it. I was thirty minutes into a race and still hanging in there with a couple of Solutions, & Lasers. ordinarily a dry capsize is survivable but not in this boat with its self balers, bungs and flap all failing miserably. If that isn't enough, the boom catching in the back of my impact vest, not to mention my head, God knows what it would do to a full on buoyancy garment. So game over and it was only that my chum in his Laser missed a mark probably in hyseteria watching me, that I didn't post another DFL.

Today however was another day and this time I got the start Ok, rounded 2nd and held that for a lap until one by one the Lasers wore me down they are just a tad faster, I've settled into it now and its quirks, getting my leg over the gubbins before transitioning in the tack I quite like the hiking angle but can't really get far enough forward because of another bit of gubbins that enables the mainsheet block to slide from side to side, quite why I've no idea, but I'm beginning to realise its appeal, its a geeks boat this, so much to fiddle with and I can see why sails have two cringles on the downhaul now, it's all because of this stupid anachronism.

The sail is slotted along the boom and pinned one end, the halyard has to be fixed to the weirdest sort of sawtooth affair, more geekery, so the downhaul cunningham as you lot call it has to have another cleat so we all still have two cleats because of the damned Solo. All but one one Lasers got by me this time but I did manage to stay in the running for a deal longer than the previous day. There are somethings about it I'm beginning to warm to, its nicely balanced I like the sail, I like some of the gizmos, some well placed bungee to keep the boom out in light weather and the sail to return inward if the outhaul is released. Somebody who owned it previously enjoyed geekery.

Once upon a time it must have been one hell of a boat, but compared to the simple life of Solution sailing I'm not so sure, now if they made it as a wash through so the water didn't hang around and got rid of all that gubbins in the middle... Oh and just as I was putting it away thinking how much heavier it was guess what? I spotted a great big wadge of lead ffs, you'd have to be mental to take sailing Solo's seriously.. I don't think it's going to be a long term acquisition.

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website



Replies:
Posted By: davidyacht
Date Posted: 21 Apr 19 at 7:10am
iGRF, they are not without their quirks, but bear in mind that they were designed by Jack 70 years ago, and an element in the class consider any changes to be akin to walking on the fine manís grave ... I hound this out a few years ago when trying to achieve a rule change to get rid of the gubbins!

The lump of lead is because FRP boats can be built way lighter than wooden boats, but the class has chosen to keep the wooden boats competitive on weight, so providing an affordable entry point into the class.

Ref. Dry capsizes ... the key to having a boat empty of water is not to be in the boat when you right the capsize ... it will then come up perfectly dry.  This is the point of the handles on the centreboard case which you will require to pull yourself back in.

Most of the sailmakers have tuning guides, on the North website their guide gives guidance on mast step positions, which includes an upright or a raked setup, the upright setup may be kinder on your head and shoulders.  My top tip is to calibrate the kicker, so that you have a position that sets a boom height that you can comfortably tack under ... then if you want to flatten the main off a bit more use the main sheet to snug it down.

Stick with it a while, they are nice boats to sail once you have worked them out ... and if you give up, at least they have good residuals so you should be able to exit for the same as your original investment.


-------------
Happily living in the past


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 21 Apr 19 at 2:57pm
I'm sure if dear old Jack were around today and had the benefit of everything that has come along, he'd be the first to raise the deck, dump the Gubbins and that sawtooth thing and permit an adjustable forestay it's a geek boat, it's got a thing in it that lets the mainsheet block move from side to side yet you can't depower via the forestay. It's got an absurd arrangement to hang the tiller off the back but put all the wiggle stuff through the hole first and tilt it sideways or there's no chance to get it on easily.

I agree its a great sail, once in position and the hinking is as acceptable as hiking is ever going to be. (I had a great sail in The Farr today which has kind of done it for me on the hiking front other than on restricted waters like the lake) I also think this winters carbonise a Streaker plan might also go ahead wether they like it or not, but the Solo does have a strange attraction and I'm not sure exactly what it is, I'm sure it must be the lure that there's more to be had, but I've no idea what it is yet and the pull is in the search for Solo enlightenment, or is it just early stages of madness setting in?

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: ColPrice2002
Date Posted: 21 Apr 19 at 3:04pm
If you're having trouble getting under the boom, you probably have too much kicker!

Off wind, sail with the kicker looser than you would normally - some sail twist is required!

Tacking - I find it easier to tack by "diving" across the hull rather than the "traditional" method of crouching in the middle of the boat.

Sail upwind with the boom just over the quarter of the hull, using about 5 cm of traveller. You won't need Cunningham till F4.

Yes it's uncomfortable sitting on the traveller ends - most Solos now have only a short traveller - you don't need a full width one.
Lastly, in jack holt's day, the mast was wood and upright. Nowadays metal masts, mast bend and rake have changed, so you will find the boat better balanced upwind with 3/4 centreboard rather than all of it.
You should be able to keep up with the lasers upwind - though they may have a slight pointing advantage - don't let them get too close to your leeward gunnel.


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 21 Apr 19 at 3:53pm
Had no problem with them up wind or surprisingly on a dead run, but it was a reaching course and I had trouble with speed out of the turns one bugger even managed to go round the outside and still nail me, there seems to be a lot of boat 'under' the water with the subsequent 'football' effect. (If you'ever tried towing a round ball or buoy the more power it dives down) but the upside in the lulls, which sadly there were not enough of it was quite breezy, it does roll on when the Lasers slow down it's got good 'glide' potential, which would probably be a whole lot better once I've dumped all that lead over the side. ;-)
How much are they supposed to weigh? I should think over the years it can't have gotten lighter, I looked it up it was built by Speed sails in 2008 so it's over ten years old, you must be able to legitimately lose the lead as the boat ages.

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: ColPrice2002
Date Posted: 21 Apr 19 at 9:03pm
I've had another Solo sail over me on a reach - probably new/old sail problem...

If you want to lose the lead, it's a remeasurement. If it's frp, then it probably not gained too much weight, wooden hulls may be a bit heavier, but it shouldn't make too much difference ( max 3kg lead correctors).

Lasers are faster on a reach, unfortunately...


Posted By: davidyacht
Date Posted: 21 Apr 19 at 10:02pm
Speed hull should be a good one, same mould as Winder Mk2 which is deriguer.

Reaching speed is about sailing dead flat, not being over boarded (lift the plate till the helm goes light) and sheet on a single purchase straight from the boom.

You need to set up the mast as per the tuning guides; what mast and sail are you using?

By the way, yes I think Jack would have done something different with todayís technology, but for all its faults it offers very good racing.


-------------
Happily living in the past


Posted By: 423zero
Date Posted: 22 Apr 19 at 8:17am
We have a couple of Solo's at my club, can't say I have noticed them struggling to get under the boom, one of them is well over 6foot.


Posted By: ColPrice2002
Date Posted: 22 Apr 19 at 8:54am
The tuning guides indicate that more mast rake upwind is faster. Because the Solo has a hot stepped mast and a slot in the foredeck, the range of rake is limited. That means balancing upwind/downwind performance, so most top competition sailors go for upwind performance, lots of mast rake. Many older helms (me!), Will have moderate rake, leaving space to tack/gybe.

Tacking across the hull helps a lot (turn into wind, roll the hull on top of you, stand up when the boom goes over your head, and change sides).
Gybing you let the kicker off.

It's all much easier with continuous control lines.


Posted By: davidyacht
Date Posted: 22 Apr 19 at 9:49am
Originally posted by ColPrice2002


It's all much easier with continuous control lines.

Had several Solos without continuous lines, though last two have had them.  Really is a case for line management ... balance them up on the downwind legs.  If you are to have only one continuous line make it the kicker ... it is possible to set up continuous lines without drilling holes in the capping ... which is a painful job using many drill bits.


-------------
Happily living in the past


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 22 Apr 19 at 6:43pm
Yes, I forgot, it's got these blue mast wedgey things, I bunged one in the front so the mast raked a bit and it looked 'right'. It's got continuous lines like the Solution and in the same place, so not difficult to switch from one boat to another, my Farr 3.7 also has continuous control lines also in the same place.

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: Fatboi
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 8:16am
If you are overpoered leave the chocks out. It will allow the mast to bend a bit more and depower.

What mast do you have with it? There are quite a few different ones, all with different stiffnesses and suited to differing weights. 


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 9:00am
Originally posted by Fatboi

If you are overpoered leave the chocks out. It will allow the mast to bend a bit more and depower.
What mast do you have with it? There are quite a few different ones, all with different stiffnesses and suited to differing weights.†
And you believe that? It's Metal, so crap, it's a Selden C-Sleeved whatever that means, I doubt very much if it's likely to bend much at all, that's the thing with ally if you let it bend any distance where it's likely to work, it'll stay bent.

But thanks for the info about the chocks, it was a bit breezy the first couple of times so I bunged one in the front to rake the mast a bit in order to depower a tad.

It does however have a very nice sail, well, very nice for the late seventies early eighties, feels like a CYT, with a composite laminate trailing edge, very tuneable, takes me back to my almost youth.

I shall give it another go this avo, there might be other Solos to compare against, it's all very well trying to keep up with Lasers which makes you do all sorts of not exactly dirty tricks, but lets call it obstructive tactics which I don't like doing, never have, much nicer to sail free and as fast as possible which only works if the other boats are not inherently faster than you doesn't it.

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: Fatboi
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 10:09am
Yes I do, the wall thickness of the Ali and the profile, as well as if there is a sleeve will make a huge difference! The difference between the wavelength masts and Selden D-Plus is huge! When I was smaller I had a wavelength and wavelength sail. It was an amazing combo and great for sub 75kgs. 

Your mast could be a few variations. Table below taken from Sailboats, which is a useful guide.

SectionSailo WeightStiffness F/AStiffness Athwart
C Sleeved<75Kg14.19.8
D Plus75-90Kg20.013.8
Cumulus>90Kg>90Kg 14.4


Posted By: davidyacht
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 11:14am
C sleeved would have been the choice mast for the lighter weight, so nothing wrong with that, especially at the lake.  My guess is that you have an Edge sail based upon your description, not necessarily the weapon of choice for open water, but good inland.

I suspect that faffing around with tuning is not your style, but tuning the rig of a Solo is relatively straight forward ... you have two choice mast step positions ... outside of transom to front of mast circa 3055 or 3070mm.  The former gives you best headroom when tacking, and gives you downwind speed at the expense of upwind.  The latter requires more yoga skills, giving you upwind speed at the expense of downwind.

Once you have decided on the mast step position, you can set the shrouds (do this without the sail or boom in place), you want the shrouds just in tension with around a 10mm gap between the front of the mast and the front of the gate. 

And to step the forestay, have the back of the mast touching the back of the gate, with the forestay in tension, and let off one or two holes on the forestay chainplate.

Generally we sail with a 1/2 inch chock in front of the mast, except in very light winds, when you could back chock, or if you are very overpowered when you might consider removing the chock (I never do this).

The other variable is the traveler, and the rule of thumb is to keep the end of the boom over the inside face of the side tank in lighter conditions, and transition to over the deck edge when it breezes up.  I usually aim to have the traveller car with one track bolt off the c/l just showing in most conditions.


-------------
Happily living in the past


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 11:22am
So according to that list this mast suits my weight?

The 14.1 measurement, what does that mean? 14.1, where is that explained to folk? and 9.8 Athwart? I assume it's 14.1 fore and aft, and the 9.8 is sideways, I wonder what the chances are that the sailmaker was given those figures and then even knew what they meant and what to do with them. I've certainly not seen any sign of it in carbon masts and luff curve matches in the dinghy sails I've seen to date.

Then I struggle with the fact that the mast is stayed, so is restricted, so it can only bend beyond the top in what we'd refer to as 'flex top' masts, then you have the fact the sail is fully battened and as such you wouldn't want too much flex other than at the head because the chord will get all out of kilter and you'll have all sorts of ghastly creasing.

Which is why the concept of 'constant curve' evolved so any chord degradation is uniform across the entire mast, again impossible in a mast such as these.

So back to my C sleeve, where is the 'sleeve', inside the mast? How far up does it go? Am i dealing with a flex top, I assume I must be. The mast must be stiffer in the lower area to resist the kicker forces.

I can't remember, are there spreaders on a Solo, to complicate things further? I don't recall seeing any, but if not why not, I seem to remember having them on the Solution, it's got an ally mast and they seem to think they're necessary..

Gets complicated all this doesn't it?

So you get to think as I do, it's 90% BS and best not to let it get in your head or you'll never sail confidently.

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 11:27am
Originally posted by davidyacht

C sleeved would have been the choice mast for the lighter weight, so nothing wrong with that, especially at the lake. †My guess is that you have an Edge sail based upon your description, not necessarily the weapon of choice for open water, but good inland.
I suspect that faffing around with tuning is not your style, but tuning the rig of a Solo is relatively straight forward ... you have two choice mast step positions ... outside of transom to front of mast circa 3055 or 3070mm. †The former gives you best headroom when tacking, and gives you downwind speed at the expense of upwind. †The latter requires more yoga skills, giving you upwind speed at the expense of downwind.
Once you have decided on the mast step position, you can set the shrouds (do this without the sail or boom in place), you want the shrouds just in tension with around a 10mm gap between the front of the mast and the front of the gate.†
And to step the forestay, have the back of the mast touching the back of the gate, with the forestay in tension, and let off one or two holes on the forestay chainplate.
Generally we sail with a 1/2 inch chock in front of the mast, except in very light winds, when you could back chock, or if you are very overpowered when you might consider removing the chock (I never do this).
The other variable is the traveler, and the rule of thumb is to keep the end of the boom over the inside face of the side tank in lighter conditions, and transition to over the deck edge when it breezes up. †I usually aim to have the traveller car with one track bolt off the c/l just showing in most conditions.
Thanks for this I'd written the following post before I read this, so thanks again, quite helpful and thanks Fatboi I'm not trying to be deliberately obtuse but I'm so sceptical of sailing BS and try to sort the fact from the black art fiction that they love to muddy the water with, some of which is so opposite to the hard earned knowledge I've accrued over the years in the other world.

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: davidyacht
Date Posted: 24 Apr 19 at 11:59am
You could think of a Solo mast as though it was free standing, basically pinned at the mast step and at the gate.  The shrouds (no spreaders) limit the bend to prevent the tube collapsing.

The numbers quoted relate to the sectional modulus, or relative stiffness of the section.  I seem to remember back in the day that sailboard masts were sold based on stiffness numbers (gold 7.0, green 7.4 and red Serfiacs 7.8), the lighter you are, the softer the prefered mast.

Ref. the C sleeved; the usual point of collapse (of what is a thinner section) is at the mast gate, where the mast can buckle, but by inserting an internal sleeve (I think to above the gooseneck) this possibility is reduced.  


-------------
Happily living in the past


Posted By: ColPrice2002
Date Posted: 25 Apr 19 at 7:11am
Most Solo sailmakers will accommodate the mast type when cutting the sail - provided that they're told.

Second hand sails - specially the budget or via several hands - are a bit of a challenge though.
You'll often find adverts for s/hand masts in the class website as people change their rig.


Posted By: ian.r.mcdonald
Date Posted: 02 May 19 at 6:24pm
[QUOTE=iGRF] Had no problem with them up wind or surprisingly on a dead run, but it was a reaching course and I had trouble with speed out of the turns one bugger even managed to go round the outside and still nail me, there seems to be a lot of boat 'under' the water with the subsequent 'football' effect. (If you'ever tried towing a round ball or buoy the more power it dives down) but the upside in the lulls, which sadly there were not enough of it was quite breezy, it does roll on when the Lasers slow down it's got good 'glide' potential, which would probably be a whole lot better once I've dumped all that lead over the side. ;-)
How much are they supposed to weigh? I should think over the years it can't have gotten lighter, I looked it up it was built by Speed sails in 2008 so it's over ten years old, you must be able to legitimately lose the lead as the boat ages.[/QUOTE

Its not a universal problem, but check the gel coat to make sure there us no separation and that you are not carrying water between the two layers.


Posted By: ian.r.mcdonald
Date Posted: 05 May 19 at 5:21pm
Solo " omerta" seems to have been engaged


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 05 May 19 at 6:25pm
No, I did have a look but forgot to come back, had a drubbing from my Laser pal after three laps of holding him off and it's a bit faster than a wooden solo I often race against so nothing wrong with it's boat speed, it's just not as quick as a Laser generally so quite a battle to hold them off if you do get in front.
It's a clean boat, I might keep it for a bit longer, there's something strangely compelling about it, despite all the gubbins. It kind of brings to a close my transformation from windsurfer into dinghy sailor, no denying it now...

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website


Posted By: ian.r.mcdonald
Date Posted: 05 May 19 at 7:40pm
Good news! And it might surprise you and persuade you to keep it long term.


Posted By: ColPrice2002
Date Posted: 05 May 19 at 9:00pm
Laser PY suggests it's faster than a Solo, if you can hold it off for several laps you're doing well.
The Solo doesn't point quite as high - unless you grind the nainsheet in. If you do, make sure you have boat speed first!

And wooden boats can be as fast as the frp ones - having held off a number of frp one's today.
Remember that the kicker needs to be released on reaches and runs.


Posted By: iGRF
Date Posted: 05 May 19 at 9:43pm
There's a very quick wooden one down the lake, he can go through us like a knife through butter if it gets 'ghosty' conditions, this plastic one doesn't ghost that well as I found out on one leg going into a mark in a wind shadow, the Laser ghosted past me that time and had me for a downhill bit, but I got him back upwind, pointing higher as it happened, I just block to blocked it and I had the rig more upright with all the blue wedgey things in the back getting the mast as vertical as possible, but cranking lots of main sheet on. Sadly it was the penultimate fifth lap he got a better shift and was gone...

-------------
https://www.corekite.co.uk/snow-accessories-11-c.asp" rel="nofollow - Snow Equipment Deals      https://www.corekite.co.uk" rel="nofollow - New Core Kite website



Print Page | Close Window

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.665y - http://www.webwizforums.com
Copyright ©2001-2010 Web Wiz - http://www.webwizguide.com