Graupner recently has introduced a new sailboat to it’s line-up, the “Trueblue”. Weight is 8 lbs 4 oz. ready to run, length is 1000 mm, height is 5-1/2 feet, width is 8-1/2 in. This is a one meter boat that uses GRP (glass reinforced plastic) for the deck and hull. This boat replaces the “Saphir” and requires much less building. Since the hull is colored in a beautiful shade of blue no painting is require. The interior of the boat is roomy however all of the electronics are packaged into a small space which is accessed through a hatch in the deck. Once the receiver, battery and servos are installed the deck is glued to the hull and this seals the deck to hull for water tightness. There are three brass tubes inside the hull which you glue in place using either the provided Epoxy or, as I chose to do I used PFM, or Goop to seal the rudder tube, mast tube and keel tube to the boat. Once these are lined up and glued in place you then apply Epoxy, or Goop to the deck openings where the brass tubes enter and attach it to the hull. The hull is sealed to the deck using a special solvent that Graupner provides that melts the plastic and forms a permanent bond or weld. “Trueblue” uses two high torque servos ganged together to provide enough power to work the mainsail and jib. All of the necessary hardware is provided in the kit as well as glue. The instruction manual is in French, German and English with illustrated drawings. The only confusion I had was in the rigging of the mast. I wish they had more pictures and close-up detail pictures of exactly how it’s done. They do call out all of the measurements which helps since rigging will only work in a certain way.
All in all I really enjoyed building “Trueblue”. You will need to purchase two full size hi-torque servos, I used Hitec HS-645MG for the sail wench and one Hitec HS-322HD for the rudder. The battery box is sized for four AA Alkaline batteries however you might be able to squeeze in a 5th cell somehow to wake up the servos. Of course you will need a 2 channel radio receiver and transmitter. Controls are sail wench and rudder control. Graupner recommends you remove the stick centering spring so that the sail setting will stay where you put it. I used a Ranger 2 channel system and one of the servos that came with the radio system for the rudder. I have not yet sailed the boat due to weather here. As soon as I do I’ll post a video, I expect “Trueblue” to sail extremely well since she’s such a clean ship. Graupner “Trueblue” will be available soon at www.hobby-lobby.com. Expect to spend 12-16 hours building the boat. Suggested retail will be around $289.00. This boat is for beginner to intermediate sailors.