Maximum Channels on a Marblehead

Hello Everyone.
What is the maximum ammount of channels allowed on a Marblehead class R/C boat?

Reading through this class rules document, I’m not finding anything. Unless I am overlooking something.

I run 2 channels on my boats (rudder & sails) but I am thinking of installing a jib twitcher, and backstay adjustment servos (therefore creating a 4-channel boat)
Is there anything that would prohibit me from doing this?

Only limitation is:

C.8.1 USE
Except for control unit positioning information, no radio transmissions from the boat shall be used.

So you are good to go!

Since you’re adding more controls, you might want to think about remotely controlling the outhauls on the sails (similar to the Skapel) :wink:

I have yet to see a Skapel, and how it’s rigged first-hand, and didn’t know they even ran to that degree of adjustment.
Regardless, while it’s a good idea It’s a bit more in-depth than I think I’m willing to venture.

The boat that I was thinking of adding these features to is a Sterne Viper I’m putting together.
I have another viper fully complete that runs on the basic 2 channel (Rudder & RMG). I was thinking of trying to accomplish a couple different things with this boat in comparison to the other.

The Skalpel does have a third channel that slacks the backstay and the outhauls when you flip a switch. Very slick setup. The clew attaches to the booms with a stainless bail that pivots on the boom. The tension is adjusted by a line that runs down the boom and then down to the deck. Much easier to do on this boat as both jib and main booms are fixed to the boat at all times and never swapped out. Personally I am not sure it is worth it. One more thing to forget to adjust when rounding the marks.
Adding a jib tweaker is easy, but I would consider a main tweaker depending on how your boat handles puffs. A jib twitcher is also nice. You could easily go to 5 channels. Personally I am not a big fan of on the fly adjustments and have even removed a jib tweaker from my Stars as I found I could not notice the difference and didnt need the weight.

I have used up to 4 channels on an M.

Between the extra weight and the diverted attention, I do not think that they are worth while. One mistake from lack of attention and you have outweighed any advantage you may have had. Not to mention forgetting to tighten the backstay as you round the leeward mark. I just use two channels with my backstay slaved to the sheets.

In regards to the Jib twitcher and it’s usefulness on the M:

I’m somewhat in the same boat. Whereas I have an EC-12, with jib twitcher. The main is a regular solid connection to the drum.
On the 12, the twitcher is a awesome feature. It allows me to spill or grab just that extra ammount of air, and by adjusting the sail I can allow the boat to stay on it’s same course, (without moving the rudder)
The Ec-12 is a drifter boat, and a completely different sail than a M. The boat is also not as weight sensitive. It’s a boat where course changes will significantly affect your overall result.

I hear you in regards to installing the twitcher on the main on the M. The M’s power comes from the upper section of the mainsail, and the jib doesn’t draw & pull the boat as significantly as the 12.
The M also doesn’t stay on the same course as long as the 12. It’s more of a nimble boat in my opinion.

Given that, I guess it would be a determination if it’s worth it to throw in a twitcher on the main. I’d say that’s probably more hassle then it’s worth, unless I just come up with the time to do so.

I’m not too concerned with the extra weight, unless it becomes of real significance. There are only few boats on my pond, as it is, and I already have a competitive boat. I’m not too concerned about scraping out every last gram of wieght. Additionally my club is talking about making the M a little more like the IOM class, where the boat itself has a minimum weight. It would be something like 2lbs hull-only with everything (no battery) to bring back out some of the old designs and get people on the water. Who knows if it will happen or not, but My finished Viper that is sailing weighs only 1.5lbs I’d have to add weight to race.
Who knows if that will happen or not…

As far as the backstay is concerned, If It can be rigged on the “landing gear” toggle switch of a DX6i, that’s a very minimal thought process when rounding a mark.

Personally, I would like to have the following be able to change remotely from the transmitter on both sails (interdependently):

Out haul
Twist (vang)
sheeting position
twitcher (wing on wing)
backstay (optional)

But not necessarily during a race, but between races. Just so I don’t have to bring the boat in. But during a race wouldn’t be a problem for me. I also fly full house R/C sailplanes, which tend to need more “weird” programming than most planes and I’m used to fiddling with switches, sliders all the time during a flight.

I have an idea on how to do this, but really need to sketch it out in CAD to see if it’s actually feasible.

The setup would need around 9 to 12 channels.

[QUOTE=Breakwater;61271As far as the backstay is concerned, If It can be rigged on the “landing gear” toggle switch of a DX6i, that’s a very minimal thought process when rounding a mark.[/QUOTE]

I was fiddling with the functions on my DX6i and I changed out the toggle switch for a momentary push button. It helps to not forget. I was just wanting to sheet out momentarily while tacking so it may not help when you want to change something for a whole leg but I may help.

That is a good idea, and I’m sure it works well. But I’m the kind of person that doesnt have any interest in cracking open the case, and voiding warranties!

I suppose that already is “feasible” given that the Skapel is already doing it.

But, without any strings? :wink: