BuiltWithNOF
FloWinGo

Health Care Reform, Insurance Reform, Quality

Roger H Strube, MD

Roger H Strube, MD

FloWinGo started life as a Kurt Hughes 4 Meter. The original design was significantly modified. Three iterations were built with the final goal of placing a wing on the last hull. All three use Hobie 14 rigs, booms, and rudder with a sunfish daggerboard. They are a delight to sail. Hull # 1 (“Blue Moon”) and Hull # 2 (“Wicked Wanda”) were constructed with two alternative mast steps. Hull #3 (“FloWinGo”) has mast step options for 3 different rigs. The Hobie 14 mast step (aluminum casting) is mounted directly above the forward aka (forward main crossbeam). A 2 1/16” Inside Diameter aluminum pipe is located just behind the Hobie mast step. This pipe was built into the hull (from deck to keel) for use if the Kurt Hughes “wing mast” were built. A 2” (O.D.) x 8’ aluminum pipe wing mast spar would fit inside this receiver to support the free standing wing mast and “wish bone” boom. A jib and screecher would prevent this rig from rotating 360 degrees. A cloth sail would be fitted behind this wing mast attached to a wish bone boom. This rig was never completed for any of the boats. Only the soft sail Hobie mast rigs were completed for any of the boats.

FloWinGo (Hull #3) was built to use the standard Hobie 14 rig, the custom Wing Mast/Soft Sail Wish Bone Boom rig or the rigid 360 degree rotating wing. The fore deck of the “Pilot Pod” cockpit has accomodation for a Hobie mast (directly over the forward, main aka/crossbeam), a  2 1/16” I.D. pipe for a wing mast/wishbone boom rig Just aft of the Hobie 14 mast step casting. The cockpit dagger board access opening is between the two forward mast steps and the bearings built in to carry the wing. Two 2” I.D. Harken rudder bearings for a rigid wing sail are mounted behind the dagger board trunk. One bearing at deck level and another below it near the keel, just behind the dagger board trunk. This position approximates the location of the center of effort of the cloth sails to maintain a slight windward helm while sailing. The Harkin big boat rudder bearings are definately overkill as the will take 20,000 pound loads and, at the time purchased, cost over $450.00 each. The 2” O.D. reinforced aluminum pipe “wing spar” has been completed. I hope to have the wing done by summer 2009. In the mean time, I am sailing these boats at the Punta Gorda Sailing Club small boat racing events at the north end of Charlotte Harbor.

The boats all max out at almost 11 knots (actual GPS speed on Charlotte Harbor). The wind pressure needed to allow that speed then tends to overcome the boyancy of the amas. The low boyance amas are actually a safety feature as the boat slowly rolls and submerges an ama and never lifts the main hull. I have tried an experiment to increase the potential speed. The amas of FloWinGo, Blue Moon and Wicked Wanda are fitted with “Surface Foils”. FloWinGo’s foils are fitted to the bows attached to a splashed “Nose Cone”. Blue Moon has foils at the forward cross beam and Wicked Wanda’s foils will also be nose cone foils on the amas and main hull. See the pictures below for the construction and final configuration of Hull #3, FloWinGo.

 

Original Hull Construction

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The boat was named “FloWinGo” because it was originally redesigned to carry a wing and I liked the Flamingo color (sea coral pink/orange). The following pictures illustrate the more recent construction near the time the trimaran was finished.

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Surface foils were added to the bow of each ama to resist side rolling and submerging of the float when a strong gust increases pressure on the sails. The amas on all three boats are “low volume” so that they will submerge before flying the main hull. The low volume amas are a safety feature. Higher volume amas could result in flying the main hull and possibly increasing speed by reducing wetted surface but would introduce the possibility of capsize. These boats are being developed for use by all sailors including the elderly and disabled. A low volume ama will submerge and the trimaran will slowly roll to leeward in a strong gust. This slows the boat and allows time to react by easing the main sheet. The ama then resurfaces and, by feathering the main sheet, the boat accelerates. The foils then help keep the ama on the surface as speed slowly increases. The foils have been tested and work well. FloWinGo is capable of 10.8 knots boat speed (verified using GPS) reaching in 12 to 15 knots of wind.

FloWinGo Ama Bow Foils

A “nose cone” was laid up over the bow of each ama. This false nose/bow was created to facilitate removal of the foils should they not have worked out. Molds consisting of a PVC pipe connected to a large PVC elbow fitting by a curved (foil shaped) plywood square. This mold assembly was attached to a chip board stand and lashed next to the bow of each ama against the “nose cone”. The foils were created by laying up glass (with a thin foam core) on these foil molds and over the nose cones. Mini “chain plates” were created using unidirectional glass fibers laid over a temporary PVC pipe mold on top and at the leading edge of the nose cones/foils. These glass attachments will be used to stabilize the kite launching tube that will be fitted to the main hull once the wing is built. The following group of pictures illustrate construction of the ama surface foils.

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