Skipper Interview No.3

Which of the three is our DF skipper interviewee?

So, we are into 2022 with plenty to look forward to in terms of racing as the year goes on. However, it might be that where you are in the world the water is a little bit hard and the days are short meaning there isn’t much sailing to be done.

So, we sent out Phil once again to track down a top skipper from the DF fleet to see what makes him tick. This time our top skipper is a giant of the big boat sailing world and has recently taken up some hobby sailing which takes the form of a DF95.

Phil says – “Ed Baird’s sailing CV is too long to list here. Suffice to say he is a legend in the sport and sails his DF95 for family fun and match racing practice. He was a coach of the 1995 America’s Cup-winning Team New Zealand and a helmsman for the 2007 America’s Cup-winning Alinghi syndicate.  He won the World Laser Championships in 1980, the World J/24 Championships in 1983 and was World Sailor of the Year in 2007.

Check out the interview with the legend that is Ed Baird by clicking here.

Fleetwood goes Global!

The iconic Fleetwood pond.

The DFICA is pleased to announce the awarding of the 2023 DF95 Global regatta to the Fleetwood Model Yacht & Powerboat Club in the UK.

It is anticipated to run from Friday 12th May 2023 to Friday 19th May with registration and
inspections on the first 2 days with racing commencing on Sunday 14th May for 6 straight days (a lay day may be included).

Fleetwood has an enviable track record of hosting World, European and National Championships. Their facilities are excellent and the town has good local accommodation and plenty of tourist sites close by.

Further details will be provided closer to the event. In the meantime please check out the club website by clicking here.

Future Global regattas are intended to fall back into the 2 year cycle (post Covid) with the DF95’s scheduled for 2026. Member nations wishing to be considered to host this event are requested to contact the DFICA Secretary.

Kind regards,

Phil Burgess,

Chairman,

DF International Class Association.

DF Global Regattas

After the excellent welcome we all received in Texas in 2018 we were looking forward to the 2020 DF65 Globals in Sweden. Covid has delayed that now by some time but there is good news for DF Global events, see below for details.

DF65

The Executive Committee recently sought expressions of interest to host the next 2 Global Regattas.

A comprehensive application was received from Sweden to host the 2024 DF65 Regatta, following the 2020 deferred events caused by Covid.

The Committee has unanimously approved the event to be held at Nynashamn, Sweden from 6th to 12th May 2024.

Here is a short video prepared for 2020 regatta….https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQsq6ETRwBM

…and some information about the beautiful coastal town…  https://nynashamn.se/uppleva/for-visitors/visit-nynashamn

Some great social activities are planned along with activities for partners. Fleet sizes are still to be agreed.

DF95

The Executive committee has received an expression of interest from the Fleetwood Model Yacht Club in the UK to host the 2023 DF95 Global Regatta in the summer months. This will be considered when further details are provided.

Future Global regattas are intended to fall back into the 2 year cycle (post Covid) with the DF95s scheduled for 2026. Member nations wishing to be considered to host this event are requested to contact the DFICA Secretary.

New Sailwinch and other Updates from Joysway

Joysway are now shipping an updated sailwinch known as the ‘DF Sailwinch’. This will now be the standard winch installed in both the DF65 & DF95. It is a digital winch with a coreless motor, full metal gearing, dual ball bearings and rated for use at 6.6v to suit the popular LiFe rechargeable batteries.

The design team have ensured that the new winch, when used with the appropriate drum, matches the sheeting speed of the older winches, so no performance gain is available. When purchased as a spare part it is supplied with both a Red 16mm diameter drum for the DF65 and an orange 25mm drum for the DF95, these fit the unique, 20 tooth output shaft in the winch. No class rule change is necessary following the introduction of the new winch, but a clarification on their use will be issued shortly on the DF World website www.dfracing.world

New DF Sailwinch with drums.

Why was the new Sailwinch Necessary?

There has long been an issue with the old winches regarding accuracy at the ends of the sheet travel. ‘End Creep’ was the first issue, this is when the winch either sheets in to an inconsistent end point or when sheeted in it would then ease out a small amount, neither of these situations helped with fine control at the fully sheeted in position. Efforts to cure this on the old winches only resulted in ‘Dead Ends’ where the sheet would wind in to a reasonably consistent end point but when trying to sheet out a small amount, nothing would happen and then the sheetline would jump out a few millimetres, once again, not satisfactory control at the close-hauled position. 

It became evident that an upgrade in winch specification was necessary to overcome these issues. The design team were careful that this is just a quality upgrade and not a performance enhancing change. 

Advantages:

– Accurate sail control 

– Same winch used on both classes, so only one spare needed if you race the DF65 & DF95

– Rated for 6.6v to suit the rechargeable LiFe batteries in common usage around the world

– Higher specification and components should lead to a more reliable winch 

– No performance upgrade compared to older winches

Disadvantages:

– Quality only comes at a price, so the new DF Sailwinch is more expensive (check with your local supplier for accurate prices), but same winch can now be used on both DF classes

The old sailwinches will still be available as spare parts for those that are happy to continue using them and don’t want to spend the extra for the new sailwinch.

Dragon Sailing USA have published an ecellent video on YouTube showing a comparison of new versus old winches at www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1yFkkMe0T4

NEW – Boat Stand Laydown Upgrade Kit

As well as the new Sailwinch, Joysway have introduced an upgrade kit which can be easily fitted to the existing boat stands to make it possible to lay the boat down on the stand for greater stability and safety in outdoor situations. This kit is now standard equipment supplied with all new  version 7 & version 2 boats (see below) as well as being available as a spare part from your local DF distributor.

Stand upgrade kit as supplied.
Stand upgrade kit assembled.

Version 7 DragonForce65 & Version 2 DragonFlite95

New boats leaving the factory will now be fitted with the new DF Sailwinch and will also include the Stand Laydown Upgrade Kit as standard. To differentiate these from older stock they have been named DF65 v7 & DF95 v2. Apart from these changes, and updates to the box graphics and Building instructions, they are identical to the current boats.

The retail price of the DF boats has been stable for a long time now. So, in line with most other products worldwide, there will be a price rise coming with the new DF65 v7 & DF95 v2 boats. This will be in the region of 20% for the 65 and 15% for the 95 (check with your local supplier for accurate prices). These price rises were necessary for the following reasons:

– Increase in all materials and electronic components in China

– Massive increases in container shipping costs (up to six times what they were a year ago!)

– Upgraded Sailwinch and Boat Stand Upgrade Kit supplied as standard equipment

The increases have been kept as low as possible, but we hope that you’ll agree that the DF boats still represent amazing value for what they deliver.

Issued by the DF Design & Development Team

November 2021

DF Racing International Class Association Formed!

Inaugural Meeting

So it’s been a while since a group of us all sat down for a meeting at TLC during the inaugural DF95 Globals way back in 2018. Since then there has been a lot of activity behind the scenes to get to where we are today. A Founders statement kicked the job off along with a working party to get a Constitution in place followed by some consultation with you guys as members of the classes.

So on the 13th June the inaugural meeting of the Founding Members of the DF Racing ICA met to elect the Executive Committee and have a general chit chat about any issues that have come to light.

The Executive Committee have released the following press release to let everyone know what happened at the meeting and give you some idea as to where we are heading as an ICA in the near future.

Thanks to all of you who have been involved with this, it is truly a momentous occasion in the world of Radio Sailing and in fact Sailing generally to have a brand new ICA formed to look after the two classes on the World stage.

Please find the press release by clicking the link below.

Rules and Stuff

So, we’ve had a communication from the current rules committee who have sent us some new DF65 and DF95 rules documents which clarify a number of things that have come up since the last revisions, including the repair situation.

“The current DF Rules Committee have been hard at work collating and assessing all the small rule changes that have suggested for both classes, as well as making some larger, fundamental changes ahead of handing the rules over to the new DF International Class Rules Sub-committee. The new DF65 Rules (version 1.7) & DF95 Rules (Version 1.3) can be found under the relevant class headings on the www.dfracing.world website along with supporting diagrams where necessary.

There are two versions of each class rules available. A straight copy of the Rules and a version which highlights the changes and gives some explanation as why they have been introduced.

The main changes you should look at cover ‘Repairs’ (65 & 95) which try to clarify what is an acceptable repair to the minority of hulls that show cracking around the finbox. This issue is being worked on by the designers and the Licensed Builder, but for now this new rule defines the extent of the repair. The battery Pack rule now defines the positions of battery packs and many smaller changes covering items such as the Winch Line Clips etc.

The DF65 rules have been updated to bring the wording and definitions inline with the DF95 rules, mainly on the subject of Sail Numbering, which now removes the reference to the RG65 class rules. In the Sails section the Mainsail Foot Profiles are defined using a published template rather than the slightly vague ‘fair curve’  description in the old rules.

None of the changes should should affect existing boats, they have been made for added clarity and greater commonality between the two DF classes.

As ever, the most important Rule (A.5 Spirit of the Rules) should be your guiding light.

Good Sailing all.

John Tushingham”

Clarification on Repairs to DF Hulls

So, it seems that there has been some confusion on the issue of repairing DF hulls that have broken and how that repair might affect the use of that repaired hull in another event in the future. Rather than have a million opinions on it and have everyone’s blood pressure rise unnecessarily we’ve had a chat to the DF Rules committee as it is currently and they have issued the following Rule interpretation for everyone to digest. The interpretation will also apply to the DF65 rules and more definition of what constitutes a legal repair will be detailed in upcoming rule revisions.

I don’t need to say any more than this, the rules committee statement below speaks for itself.

” The DF Rules committee have been made aware of a published interpretation by the American DF95 Executive of Rule A.7 ‘Repairs’ in the current DF95 Class Rules (Version 1.2). Their interpretation was never presented to the rules committee and does not reflect the original intention of the rule.

It is evident that in a minority of hulls there is an issue of cracking around the keel box, this is most likely due to inertia of the keel bulb during a collision or rough handling of the boat. In some instances it may be due to variations during the manufacturing process resulting in a thinner skin in this area. Rule A.7 allows for repairs to be made “provided they are not intended to enhance the original function or performance of the damaged items”. The Rules Committee and the rules author consider that a localised, internal repair around the base of the keel box is acceptable and will not enhance performance or change the original function of the hull. However, if the repair extends beyond this area or introduces additional structure, such as stiffening ribs or bulkheads, then it would clearly be a breach of rules A.5, A.6 & A.7.

Joysway have made several modifications to the moulding process to try and rectify this issue and are working with the designers on new ways to overcome this issue. In the next versions of the class rules, which will be published shortly, we will try to clarify the extent of what is considered a legitimate repair to the keel box area and there will be no time limit placed on the life of such a repair. In most class rules repairs are allowed, the DF classes should be no different provided they comply with any definitions in the class rules. Replacement hulls are available at a very reasonable cost but we feel that an owner should have the option to undertake a class legal repair and continue sailing their boat.

John Tushingham
28 May 2021
On behalf of the Rules Committee.”