ORacer (formerly Oz PDRacer( sailboat – first optional lug rig launched

Just got an email from Dan Taylor in Washington State, USA.

He is the first to provide pics of the OZ PDR with the lug rig option. The sail looks very nice indeed and the light wind and a perfect sunny day were the other necessary ingredients.

Here are his email and the pictures – thanks Dan

I finally launched my PDRacer last week.

Enclosed are three pictures of my wife sailing it on a nearby lake, me on the inaugural sail in the bay two days before, me setting it up, and the boat on our Mini.

I am very pleased with the sail even though I ended up with about seven oz polytarp. This was more than my wife’s old sewing machine could handle, particularly because I had forgotten your comment in the email about leaving the double sided tape back a little, so the needle didn’t have to pass through it. So this is a sail without stitching, but so far, so good.

I love the looks of the sail. Every designer seems to use a slightly different profile.

Yours is the one that grabs me the most visually. As far as the lug goes in general, it is really nice to have all of that sail area in light airs and it jibes like a dream.

The boat was built exactly to your PDRacer design in the plan with the addition of rowlocks and a small seat over the centerboard trunk. (Good Idea!!!)

So far we only have had it out in light air, but are very pleased with it. Fortunately only light air, because we both have a lot to learn and we need to do some tweaking.

My wife is a very good Sunfish sailor and small boat sailor in general. I am a more casual sailor with most of my experience in larger boats. Right now we have the sheet led like the sprit boom version, but I am going to re-lead it the way you have the GIS. (Good idea too)

My wife at 62 and me at 72 also have a hard time scrambling about in that small cockpit. She wants me to build a rudder box with a tiller that raises–particularly because in light air she likes to sit on the cockpit sole leaning back against side tanks and would love to just scoot her bottom across when tacking.

I can’t argue with that, but generally just think we need more practice so we are not tripping over the tiller and sheet and getting the tiller extension jammed in the corner of the cockpit as we stumble around.

I would probably recommend shortening the tiller by about 50mm (2″) and see if that helps. I think it might make quite a difference.

If you want a lifting tiller .. If you attach the tiller to the top of the rudder blade then this idea will work. Problem with a hinging tiller on the open back rudder box is that the box will break when the tiller is swung up as it relies on the tiller to take the sideways loads. Thanks Gil Kolan for that idea!

On my inaugural voyage the square knot on the lashing for the boom block came loose and I had a difficult time getting the boat into irons so I could get the block re-fastened to the boom. I finally succeeded, but then heading back towards the dock pointing in lighter airs, I unintentionally got in irons and ended up drifting up against a pedestrian ramp to another dock. Fortunately the light winds allowed me to fend off without damaging the sail.

All of which says nothing about the boat, which is terrific within the limitations of it size, and says everything about us, particularly me, and the practice we need.

I suspect that if the boat gets hung up in irons then the sail is a bit too far back compared to the mast. If it is moved forward slightly .. maybe 50mm (2″) or 100mm (4″) then I think the “in irons” problem may go away.

There are some good suggestions on how to rig a lug rig for efficient sailing on this page.

As our summer here has finally started (Bellingham, Wa, in the Pacific NW), we should be able to do that. Intentional capsizes though will have to wait for another month to let the water warm up a little.

The boat with four oz glass on the bottom, but no other epoxy coating used, and with the addition of the rowing seat ended up weighing about 75 lbs.

Some say that glass cloth over the bottom of the boat adds negligible weight. However experience indicates otherwise. Not because glass is so heavy, but because wood is so light. So small amounts of glass make quite a bit of difference.

Dan has done the smart thing and reduced the weight of glass, but I have some new information that indicates he could probably have gone lighter still.

Dan’s weight for the boat indicates a weight increase of around 10 to 12lbs. Normal 6oz woven glass cloth(200gsm) would add about 15 to 18lbs. Quite a lot in some ways. I have done a bit of chasing around and have found that some quite large cruising trimarans (Jarcats) use very light glass cloth and plywood weights not much greater than the PDR with very good results on a much heavier boat. So for people wanting to glass I would probably be recommending 2oz (75gsm) glass just to keep the weight increase down to around 5 or 6lbs. A very good solution!

Anyway just wanted to let you know I finally launched.

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