|Just waking up|
|Ready for action|
The wind was very strange, - or so I thought. Turns out the Laser Radial uses SL wind by default. SL wind was - obviously - designed by landlubbers. Not meant for sailboats, windmills, kites, surfers or anything usefull. It goes around and around like 360 degrees in a few minutes.
Luckily there was a notecard in the boat, telling me how to switch to WWC wind; Ahh, that's better. Now the wind is stable, but not too stable. It's much better, but there is always a but. It seems the Laser Radial is not entirely WWC compliant. It only uses the wind part. That's really too bad. There is no pitching or rolling caused by waves. There is no current, there is no winddrift, and there is no windshadowing. Not really suited for racing I guess.
|WWC, Wind, Waves and Current|
Sadly, the laser moves pretty much like a Tako, - like a dead duck on a leach.Ok, that's maybe a bit harsh; The Laser Radial isn't a Tako. It is far better and more interesting; Reading the notecard again, the builder positions the Laser Radial as an intermediate boat. Much more advanced than a Tako; Much easier than a Flying Fizz with the dreaded capsize. Maybe that's true, but I'd definately want my Laser to capsize, when I make mistakes.
Another thing... the sails are flat as pancakes. This might not be a problem to non sailors, but if you've ever looked up a real sail to check the shape... flat sails just won't work for you. Check this to see the difference. Being a bit geeky here, but flat sails... I mean, they'd work on a run, but upwind... they need that wing-shape.
|Let's call it a day|
All in all, I was a bit disappointed by the Laser; I don't think I will sail it much, but... it has potential, so I'll write to Santa and wish for an upgrade. If you're new to sailing, the Laser might be a good choice. If you know sailing, then you'd be much better of with a Flying Fizz. Let me just get this thing back up on land and then I'll pack my stuff here; Get back to Tradewinds.