|In between races|
Atop the mast there is a windvane. It looks great, but sadly it is defunct. It always points backwards. Now, I can easily remember the feeling of sitting in my dinghy not knowing where the wind comes from. That's no fun. What the vane does is, it makes the invisible wind visible. Check the vane on the Shelly Fizz. It is a huge help for the new sailor, and it would easily fit on the Spark.
|The Spark up close|
The boat itself is kinda cute. The hull is somewhat like a crossing of a Starboat and a Laser, only smaller? Nicely put together with rounded corners and few sharp edges. Cleats too. It is the rigging, gear and sails that need more work. There is no visual trim indicator. The sail flaps when too loose, but there's no telltales, plus, - there's no compass.
So I can't see my direction, I can't see my trim, and I can't see the wind. How's that for a sailing simulation? At this early stage, the Spark is sailed by numbers. Wind, bearing and trim is indicated with green text floating mid air. The text is colourcoded, so pink means capsize, blue means too tight, green is good, yellow is loose and red is very loose. After all it is a prototype in alpha-stage. The really, really, truly great news is that the BWind 2.0 actually supports telltales.
|It's a pretty lil thing allright|
|Wind systems collide|
I've had this little boat a while now, and I like it. It looks great, it sails well, and it keeps getting better. While there's still work to do, it sure will be exciting to follow the Spark. It looks very promising, and it is definately worth a test. These past few days the alpha-version has been freely available at Tradewinds.