Transat 6.5 as Footy

Now that C Class Cats have just finished resolving who rules the world, the next sexiest thing in competition are the Transat 6.5s …

This is pretty cool for the Footy world because, apart from the duel rudders, they could work at scale … I know I know the design brief goes contrary to the current direction that is being tossed up, but dammit … they LOOK GOOD … !


yeah they do!!!

as somebody who really wants to do a mini transat myself some time in the -hopefully near- future, i love how much footys resemble these boats. there ya go angus, yet another case for the “American Muscle Footy” they look sexy! lol:devil3:

Jokes (mine and yours) about American muscle Footys apart, I don’t understand either of you.
We have two very inventive guys - and all they want to do is copy things. Why not just design Footys as Footys, not as warmed over versions of something else?

Incidentally, here’s a nice recipe for mock turtle soup! :devil3:

like this fella’s:

his is very nice!

[QUOTE=Angus;41838]I don’t understand either of you.
We have two very inventive guys - and all they want to do is copy things. Why not just design Footys as Footys, not as warmed over versions of something else?

Damned if I know, Angus … why do I toil as a trimmer on a Freres F3 than run the pit on a PHRF3 slug … why do these foiling moths showing up in every harbour I’m in make women suddenly stop talking to me and go talk to that guy in the wetsuit … for that matter, why would I rather date a beautiful woman than a smart one … it’s Darwinian!

Yes, so’s a brontosaurus!

Angus, I think there’s an opportunity for scale boats in the class as well as for purpose-designed racing boats.

The 6.5 lends itself nicely, as its typical dimensions fit the box. Builders might do well to remember, though, that the success of the 6.5 depends on canting keels or water tanks as moveable ballast…options not available on Footys.

Catboats are another natural for Footys.

So I suggest building whatever you like…and have fun with Footys!

Bill H

i usaully do something that resembles something else, based on the fact that i’m poor (not complaining). :lol:

i can’t race an open 60 in reality, so a scaled model is what i can do. :wink:
then there’s the footy-sized boats. don’t need a u-haul, put the model in yer back pack, and off ya go. :smiley:

oh and angus, i had turtle soup once, when i was a boy in barbados.
it was delicious as i remeber.

angus, i don’t see it as copying.:wink: to start out with all of my boats are designed from scratch, with a specific performance goal - something about footys i want to improve. and i am going to try to be as innovative in my process as possible. however, sometimes in looking for answers, i find that somebody else has already done most of the guess work for me, for example:

footys have a horrid tendency to nose dive. we all know this. now, Mini 6.5s, and Open 60s (as well as many other ocean racers) can’t afford to nose dive the way our boats do… it could be fatal. so they have had to figure out solutions. so if i am trying to design a boat that doesn’t nose dive as much, i am going to spend a little time looking at the boats that have already (to some extent) solved to problem. then i find that, “interesting, a narrow entry, combined with a flare to the deck, and a lot of reserve bouyancy helps keep these big boats from having these problems…”

at this point in the design, one thing leads to another, if you have a broad bow, the stern naturally becomes wider. also, when designing a “Muscle Footy” many of the design concepts are much the same as in designing a mini or 60. in relative terms, the “sea states” a footy will encounter are roughly similar to those a Mini will come across. also, just as with a Mini or 60, the footy is a box rule. in our case, we have unlimited sail area. so, obviously, one wants to carry as much sail as possible while using up as little displacement as possible as ballast. so, what do we come up with? wide, highly stable designs that can carry less in the bulb and still carry - in the case of Orange Crush - probably twice the sail area that Moonshadow carries. unfortunately for the originality of the look, both the Mini and the 60, and so many others have been trying to do this same thing, for a little bit longer than us. thus, it is a sad inevitablity that our boats are going to share appearances.

i know that much of the Minis’ and the 60s’ success relies on their use of canting and movable water ballast. however, there are parts of their design concepts that - to me - make them much more favorable as footys; they are naturally more bouyant, they have higher displacements, they can carry more sail, the hull form is more stable, when you heel them over, the wetted surface drops significantly, and the waterline length increases, etc, etc, the list goes on.

finally, it may be the same syndrome as every young boy thinking his puppy is the smartest dog in the world, but at this point, i think that my “American Muscle Footy” is just as fast as you brits with your ultra light pencils. honestly, i can’t wait to finally get to put Orange Crush side by side with Angus’ Moonshadow and see who is on top after a couple of laps.:devil3:

as i said at the top, i don’t feel in any way, shape, or form, what we americans are doing with our “Muscle Footys” is copying big boats because they look cool. honestly, i think they are faster and better suited to racing in the footy class.


[b][i]if this has offended anyone, please view it at the rantings of a biased, “American Muscle” builder, and future Mini 6.5 hopeful. lol

over and out!:D:lol:


ok … does this mean I have to think instead of being snide … Transat 6.50s have moveable ballast and wide beams … Footies with a wide beam can use a deep keel and low hanging ballast which I’m guessing in scale terms accomplishes the same righting moment (scaled up, the keel on a Transat 6.50 would be 20 ft deep and there would be no need for water ballast or complications of a canter … though it couldn’t enter most harbours in the world!) … no need to cant or move anything on a footy

as for wide beamy boats … bluesky, while tender at first, is now sorted … her wide beam (and yup, the design brief follows barretts almost to a letter though at a much lighter displacement and less flare up front) increases stability (though at the cost of increased susceptibility to the helmsman’s twitchy thumbs) and, contrary to fears, she no longer buries her bows and holds a downwind line …

pics show her on a reach and pointing … while conditions are moderate, they do indicate stability

… Nigel has sent over two new bluesky hulls which will be fitted over the winter … while intended for match racing and thus conforming to a different design brief, I’d be more than happy to make them (or a bluesky 1 for that matter) available for anybody’s on water test program …

… in any event, back to work …

… asteroids Angus!! not darwin! Asteroids killed the brontasauraus … and anyway, they were ugly :slight_smile:

that is a lovely boat tmark! someday we will have to get our fatties together and see what is what!:slight_smile:

just out of curiosity, what is bluesky’s displacement? My proto for Orange Crush displaced 14.5 oz. but i think she is a little stouter than yours…

Thx mate …

333 grams all in

125 gr ballast
60 gr batteries (lithium)

33 cm length at hull
54 cm masthead height
22 cm draught

McCormick Rig - 1025 sq/cm sa

Next boats will use 175 gram ballast and with a much less sloppy build aim for 350 grams all up …

more pics and info at —

And against this we have MoonShadow.

335 g disp.
215 ballast
72 g batteries (disposable Li)
Depth 300 mm
Loa 324 mm

This is using minimal hi-tech material - carbon only for some very local reinforcment. Rudder is bala, servo tray ply. Fin is western red cedar. Hull is almost entirely glass, epoxide and perspiration.

I am in a blunt mood this morning Angus… so until Moonshadow completes a race, or indeed a lap can I humbly suggest that the numbers don’t mean a lot. It just might be that she is impractical in the rough and tough of actual racing. So please refrain from constantly beating us with her numbers :stuck_out_tongue: as if they prove somehow that our broader church is wrong.

Waiting patiently to be impressed…


Gee guys, I guess I missed something…didn’t know we had a lightest boat competition!

Bill H

First off … kudos Angus … you commissioned a light boat, and more importantly it has a great displacement to ballast ratio …

I’m not sure that it means a thing, though, and there-in lies the nub of the discussion …

If we can assume that hull-speed is finite in a Footy, or that differences are only measurable in fractions, things like sea-keeping ability, acceleration, deceleration, ability to point higher, etc will have as great or greater impact on the success of a boat … displacement has its effect on these factors but its not clear that, on balance, lighter wins out over heavier …

Likewise, a high ballast to displacement ration is largely meaningless … for instance,250 grams hung 20cm below the same fulcrum point (the hull) is going to be able to carry the same amount of sail area REGARDLESS of how light the boat is built … thus, all else being equal, a 350 gram boat and a 450 gram boat, are both going to be overpowered at exactly the same point …

The questions then become, not what ratios we can build to; but a/ what gains in hull speed do we get from reducing displacement; b/ are those gains real; and c/ at what cost do those gains come (sea-keeping ability, sustaining momentum rounding marks, righting moment … ) ? The only immediate advantage that comes to mind is acceleration in light winds, which is negated by the arguement, that heavier boat maintains momentum in more varied conditions …

As for beam … all else being equal, a wider boat increases the righting moment and thus a wider boat can carry greater horsepower, or reduce displacement … its this principle that makes multihulls so much faster, or for that matter the VO60’s and 70s which god forbid can sustain speeds of over 20knts and why the AC boats don’t …



well said tmark!

i would add something if you had not said all there was to say at this point!!!:slight_smile:

and angus, as tmark said, really great job with Moonshadow! those are some impressive specs!

I don’t know where you get the ‘constantly’ from Graham. This is the first time that any detailed figures have been published on MoonShadow. The fact that they are published now is not to attract any Kudos or any other detergent but to privide tmark, some of whose numbers are quite similar, with something to think about.

As to MoonShadow’s practicality in real racing, her failures were exactly the same as those of two of the three Kiittiwakes present at Llandudno - loss of watertight integrity due to unsticky ‘sticky’ tape. The fact that MoonShadow did not sink despite repeatedly loosing her entire foredeck and did not cause any permanent damage to her electrics might possibly be due to superior seakeeping qualities of the hull - in particular an apparently marked absence of submarining.

I would point out that the only mechanical damage to the boat was discovered afterwards and was a one-off design/manufacturing defect in the rig (my problem, not Brett’s).

If you want to chance a Kttiwake against an Aklela 2 that has been sailed twice, try and persuade Alan Whitworth to come to Burton-on-Trent! :slight_smile:

well, then i guess we have hit the end of the road. there is only one way out.

we have to race!:smiley: