I think in pictures, all boats look relatively the same, put in person, if you put this side by side with a cobra, you wouldnt even put them in the same family.
Anyhow, As for the rocker, its maximum point is dead nuts centered on the boat. The center bouyancy however is not.
The boat is designed with a displacement of 5.5 lbs ideally but could probably be sailed well as light as 5.25, and I am currently sailing it as heavy as 6.1 lbs. I want to sail it at about 5.6 personally, but have been cursed with an ailment(http://www.ourwalden.net/limes) that has left me without the use of my hands, and there for not capable of trimming down my bulb which currently weighs 4.1 lbs or so. But, she does sail well even at that 6.0 + lbs of weight.
She does heel a couple of degrees more than the boats I race against, but she was designed to do so. There is actually an optimal heel angle built into the hull design. Most of the boats I race against have been trying to go light, on boats that were designed to be heavy, thought wide, with the reduced ballast, in a blow, they lift too much of the hull out of the water with negative consequences. . . Hard to explain without two boats on water next to each other.
Masts. . . the mast that is in for the pictures is my super stiff C-rig mast. Something that would survive armageddon. It is just below the limit of maximum mast diameter. My A and B rig are noteably narrower . . . but could still be narrower with shrouds. I elected to NOT go shroudless for two reasons.
- With a boat this narrow, shrouds are like tits on a bull (useless). If you do the trig inorder to effect the mast at all, the loads have to be VERY high. This means I would have to add weight and stiffness to the hull near the chainplates. By allowing all the forces to go directly to the keel and no where else, I can save on weight overall to tolerate the larger, stiffer, heavier mast.
- Ease of use. Not as much to hook up to go sail. Quicker rig changes, less tuning, Keep it simple!
- Auto depowering. . . Sailed some skiffs with rigs that were designed to flex off in a blow and spill air out of the top of the sail where it was hurting you the most. Kinda liked that, thought that with a narrow boat, it might yield some good results.
- and finally, in most of the locations I sail in, the fastest race is the cleanest race. Shrouds just add one more thing that can snag on another boat. By keeping everything as clean as possible, when that random person hits you, you are less likely to get stuck together and capable of sailing away rather than sitting there and having to take a DNF or DFL.
I knew I said 2 reasons, and then gave four. . . oops, I am sure there are more. I personally dont like spreaders and shrouds and diamonds. There are masts out there that are stiff enough to deal with the loads on their own without increasing diameter and weight too much, such as the sections from grahm bantock. Do this if you can. Take a smaller diameter, lighter mast that is rigged with spreaders and shrouds . . . weigh it compared to the 10mm od bantock section. . . I bet it is within a fraction of an ounce after adding all the shrouds and spreaders. Now take each section, and swing it through the air like a golf club, but at about the speed wind goes over your mast (10mph+/-) . . . which has more wind resistance? I know how my answer turned out.
Channels . . . 2. Keep it simple. Less things to think about in the boat, the more I can think about out of the boat. The fraction of speed I may gain with either of those other devices is offset the first time I screw something else up while thinking about how they are set, or forget to re adjust the trim. Also, I dont think carrying around the additional weight warrants their use. . . just my oppinion, but you have to remember that I am a relative newbie. . . that being said, if I were to add a third channel, it would be to adjust the jib slot relative to the main. I think there is more speed gain there then anywhere else.
Off to sail, and hopefully get some on water pictures!