Racing with electronics

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Chris Maas
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Racing with electronics

Post by Chris Maas » Thu Feb 14, 2008 5:52 pm

Was there some discussion somewhere about the use of electronics while racing? Other than what was talked about at the worlds I guess I missed it.

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Christian AUS
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Post by Christian AUS » Thu Feb 14, 2008 6:43 pm

This sounds a bit obvious but it's a topic in the current ballot.

Chris Maas
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Post by Chris Maas » Thu Feb 14, 2008 7:14 pm

Christian AUS wrote:This sounds a bit obvious but it's a topic in the current ballot.
Well yeah, that's what I was refering to. I would have been interested to read peoples thought about it. Still would in fact.

Personally I'd rather use my own diminishing mental capacity to tell me the best way to go. I think that's a lot of what racing is about. And yet I use an electronic compass.

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Christian AUS
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Post by Christian AUS » Thu Feb 14, 2008 7:47 pm

Just been updating Tim Wilsons website (http://www.TWYachDesign.com) and as he's now a dealer for Velocitek I had a good read of their product.
Pretty interesting, and handy as I rarely sail against other IC's it wold b nice to have two measures of improvement (Yardstick and Data). Plus a VMG reading every now and then would be nice, handy to see how fast you really are going to how fast it feels.

But in competition I don't think we need the devices.

H Virtue
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Post by H Virtue » Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:56 pm

Im for the use of diminishing mental capacity, I like it being a race of boat and sailor against boat and sailor, without outside assitance what so ever. The GPS's are neat what information and assistance the can provide Im not convienced that is what canoe and dinghy sailing is about.

I also use an electronic compass, that might sound hypocritical. I see the micro tactic (what I use) as just a compass with a timer. The only difference as I see it with the micro tactic and using a magnetic compass and a watch is I dont keep losing the tactic off my wrist like I seem to have done more recently with watches.

At the end of it all, if it is voted in and proven to be an advantage you will see one on my boat. Could this money be better spent at a yacht club bar? or some boat maintenace?

H.

TimClark
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Post by TimClark » Sat Feb 16, 2008 9:55 pm

Personally, I think it's great for practicing as it does provide very useful information from what I have seen. I don't think it should be used during racing because from what I have seen it does help out, providing a sailor with real-time VMG is a real bonus as it is no longer a matter of, "Does this feel fast" but rather an accurate answer whether or not what you just did helps out. I think that if it is allowed to be used while racing, it is only going to up the price that you need to pay to stay competitive.

TC

jimc
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Post by jimc » Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:34 pm

Having got the ballot form I'm in the dark too: there doesn't seem to be any background on the electronics vote, what its trying to change/fix or whatever.

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Christian AUS
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Post by Christian AUS » Sun Feb 17, 2008 11:08 pm

The unofficial background as I know it - is that there have been requests in the wings for the loosening up of what electronics are allowed on IC's when racing. The pre-dates the 2005 Worlds, and so it has been decided to see what the IC sailing community wants - and this DC ballot provided a great opportunity to ask this question.

This was also raised at the skippers meeting at the 2008 Worlds.

Hope this helps a little

Phil Stevenson
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Post by Phil Stevenson » Sun Feb 17, 2008 11:56 pm

The GPS (electronic equpment) ban existed in the old IC sailing rules not in the IC (Nethercott) boat measurement rules.

The App IV DC rules included a paragraph allowing GPS equipment.

So the vote to accept the DC (App IV) rules as the new IC needed two things:
1. Change the IC boat measurement rule to the draft DC App IV and
2. change the sailing rules to allow GPS.

That is why there are two questions on the ballot.
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Kris
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Post by Kris » Mon Feb 18, 2008 12:54 am

I voted for the electronics, mainly because I don't see a strong point in banning it anymore with prices coming down.

I don't see it as all that useful for racing though, but if others do why not?. I've sailed with a GPS a few times, but strapped it to the foredeck where I can't reach it and can't see it.

I can maybe see a use for a simple speedo for myself, I often waste my little braincells thinking I'm going quick when I'm not and vice versa. So a quick confirmation by looking at the speedo could leave me free to think about more productive things. If you are good you won't have to look at the GPS to know your speed, and you'll be close enough to the front to judge your speed boat on boat. Nothing will ever beat that...


I'm doubtful about how useful the VMG readout is. Even in a yacht with a proper wind input the VMG is far too volatile to actually steer to. That's why target speed is used downwind as you can actually steer to it. Using a dodgy "mean" direction can't help either.
Using the VMG readout in practice to figure out your optimum gybe angles is a different story, I could see the use for that.

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