My overly complicated boat that I'm building

Ok, I’m going to set up something fun here and I was wondering if any of you had an opinion on it. Basically, is this a cool idea or am I being slightly ridiculous in my designs?

I have a 1.3m hand carved wood scale hull with a lead-filled keel. I know it floats nice and stable as of my preliminary bathtub hull testing with off-centre weights. I’m thinking of making an auxiliary bolt-on keel out of steel plate for it to add a bit of ballast and to prevent sideslip with the existing scaled-down keel.

Its a 2-masted schooner rig and I want to put a staysail + 2-3 boomless jibs on it, a foresail and a main in back.

I was working out the rigging the other day and I figured I could control my jibs and staysail on one winch, with a v-shaped jib sheet configuration like you’d see on a 20ft sloop. The fore and main sheets are to be on a second winch, then have a small servo for the rudder. This leaves 1 channel on a 4ch remote to power either a recovery propellor or something really awesome like spinnaker deployment.

I’m going to have the servos, receiver unit and batteries below deck in a watertight container, but the pullies and other rigging will all be above deck. For rigging, I planned to have a triple-decker pulley for the jibs, since they’ll all need different amounts of trim, and a double-decker pulley for the other sails since the main and fore booms are of differing lengths and require different amounts of trim.

SOOO aside from the obvious complicatedness of the design I have a few questions

-1- I was reading threads on AM/FM/2.4Ghz remotes, and I didn’t really get a clear answer. Will I be just as well-off with AM or FM in a 4ch configuration?

-2- Is there a real range advantage to going 2.4Ghz or are the digital remotes more for people requiring super exact control?

-3- With a receiver meant to drive servos, can I get a motor with a variable speed control that’s designed to connect to the same receiver and respond to the servo signals, or would I need a separate receiver like you’d see in an RC car.

Thanks guys, I’ll try and post a pic of my progress.

For 1). Don’t get an AM. Get at least FM. If FM, get a ‘ground’ set. ie on the 75 Band (72 band is air only). If you will sail in a ‘busy’ situation (many others sailing)…get additional crystals to switch frequency. The main advantage of the 2.4 gig is that many can operate at same time with no frequency conflicts and no crystals to mess with. A good 4 channel FM set would be a HiTec Laser4. I suggest to avoid the ‘pistol grip’ style Tx for sailboats.

  1. 2.4 gig may be overkill for you. It is great for guys going to large regattas. Digital servos will be overkill and much more expensive. Look at the Hitec HS785HB as a winch. Any large standard servo should work for a rudder in your size boat. Look at the Hitec HS425BB (powerful and heavy duty gear set).

  2. Don’t know much about speed controllers, but you should be able to plug in a speed controller into the Rx. The motor will need its own drive battery to keep RF interference away from the Rx and to ensure that no high current flows through the Rx.