Friday, September 28, 2012

Trapeze disease spreading

Urgent: The Tower Trapez Disease observed at the 49er Europeans seems to be spreading and fast. Less than fifteen days ago Nørregaard and Thomsen amazed the sailing world by doing this in their 49er. This was in Fraglia Vela Riva, Italy:
49er tower trapez
Shortly after that, the same thing was observed at the Danish Youth Championship just north of Copenhagen, Denmark. Here's a shot of Stine and Amalie - in their 29er - showing clear signs of being infected.
29er tower trapez
Very recently the disease has been observed spreading to a completely different animal, the DS37 Matchracer. This shot shows a DS37 with very clear symptoms; The DS37 shown is on route to Malmö, Sweden, where I have reason to suspect the "night track" enabled the disease to spread further.
DS37 Matchracer tower trapez
Let's just say that trapez in a DS37 Matchracer is rather unusual; Tower trapez in a DS37 therefore is extremely unusual, and this leeds me to a frightening conclusion: The Tower Trapeze Disease - dubbed TTD - could be highly contageous. Question is will there be a cure, and do we want one?

It's gonna be interesting to see what next week will bring. Will we see Tower Trapez on a Farr40, a Swan 65 or perhaps a Wally101? Stay tuned...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Bending or breaking

Norregaard and Thomsen took silver at the Seiko 49 Europeans. Woot woot. What's more interesting is the on-going debate over their hiking style... Question is, - is this legal? Some have suggested a rule 47.2 infringement. It's the one about "noone can leave the boat while racing". Check the post on Look to windward. I think it is safe to say he is still on board.
Always wear flats when sailing
To me it looks more like a rule 49.1 infringement: "Use only hiking straps and stiffeners to position yourself outboard". Standing on top of another person is definately not allowed, but is it forbidden? Using another persons body to position yourself outboard? Perhaps there is something in the 49er class rules about this?

What do you think? Bending or breaking? Lethal or illegal?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

First impressions

It is hardly fair to talk about first impressions as such; I first saw the virtual VO70 back in May at Tradewinds. I was out sailing, and the majestic profile of Dutch's boat caught my eye. I parked my Fizz right beside it, and gazed at the formidable build. Then Dutch popped up and we talked boats...
Sailing a virtual VO70
Shortly after that, Dutch built his beautiful marina, and ofcourse I visited regularly to see the amazing work in progress. The boat was now kinda complete... built bit by bit to visual perfection, but it still lacked someone to breathe life into it. There was no sailing engine inside.
Woohooo... virtual seaspray!!!
We had some great fun taking photos - setting up a handfull of boats to look like live action... Back then the boats were staticly sitting on the water, arranged in patterns like clay sculptures. Notice there was no seaspray. Unlike this shot right above, where the boat is very much alive. All that's missing is a few drops of water on the lense.
High speed beating
So what's it like? It sails. That in itself is fantastic. It is a huge boat, and it still works after crossing a sim border. It is fast, looks great, has great sounds, and the seaspray is just lovely. I will try to catch the seaspray - flying towards me - on camera. Those daggerboards move up and down, and the swing keel... hmm... more on that. There is a huge gennaker too, and lotsa gadgets for the crew.
Push that button
So first impressions were great. First sailing impressions are still sinking in. So far I am glad I pushed that button. A VO70 is a fantastic sailing machine, and this one can be sailed by one person. That alone makes it worth while. I'll  recommend any one interested in sailing to try it. However, I have yet to discover, whether or not the VO70 can make the cut for cruising or racing.

More testing to be done. This is not a review; It is only my first impression sailing the giant thing. Be back with more details.

The real deal

Not everything has disappeared over summer. Some things have moved. Some things have emerged, gone from dream to the real thing. For instance, this thing here behind me... What do you think it is?
 Ohh la la
Nope; It is not an RC boat... it's the real deal. Press that red button and you get a blast. Not an explosion... nah... you get a full scale demo version of the virtual VO70.

Update: Check the links in the comment from Jane for a thorough analysis of the virtual VO70.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Balduin Aabye Yacht Design gone?

So I finally made it inworld. Haven't been there much lately. Summer, sailing and other RL stuff taking my time. I checked my inventory, and I found a little gem, which I've never really tried... The paperboat from Balduin Aabyes Yacht Design. Here it is:
Balduins paper boat
I was just about to take her for a spin, when Ahab materialized at the pier. We talked a bit, and I learned that Balduin has closed his Yacht Design. Ahab was really on his way out, but I persuaded him to hop on board for a picture. Right after that I crashed, but the picture made it to my hardddrive.
Ahab and me in the paperboat
Sadly Sammie confirmed the bad news; Nevertheless I will be looking for Balduin for a while, and I will be enjoying his beautifull boats for longer. I'd better be back with a recap of his work; Even though I haven't covered it all.
Me looking for Balduin
It's really too bad that Balduin quit. Not only did he produce some beautiful boats; More importantly he was such a nice guy, and a true gentleman. From what I heard it will be some time before he reemerges, if at all.
Relaxing...
That recap of Balduins boats will have to wait a little though. Right now the RL racing season is still on; I have a few minutes for relaxing, and then off I go... I think I will leave myself hanging like this, thinking about all the good times with Balduin.
Gazing...
Balduin, - where are you?

PS: In case you wonder, what a virtual boat yard looks like, here it is... Balduin Aabye Yacht Design. Check the category boatyards for more details.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Speeding in a 49er

It seems Danes Norregaard and Thomsen are leading the 49er Europeans. That's great. What's even greater is their special hiking style... It looks absolutely fantastic. It is really the transformation of the sailing circus into Circus Sailing :-D
Circus sailing or sailing circus?
Now, let's not get carried away... What I really wanna know is: Will we be able to do the same hiking  trick in a future version of the Flying Fizz?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

iPhone 5 is out

There is a new iPhone out. It is pretty much like the old one, - only slightly better in a number of insignificant ways, and... most importantly: It is not waterproof. Duh! Being waterproff would have given the iPhone an edge. Now it is just another big-screen smartphone for indoor use only.
Out of fashion
I know... There's a million watertight cases and plastic bags, and some even come in fancy colours, but let's face it... An iPhone in a plastic bag will never be anything but out of fashion. Now that's too bad, but it gets  worse: iRegatta will be discontinued on Android by november 2012.

Well, the RL sailing season is coming to an end anyways, so I guess my trusty old 3GS will last till the SL racing season starts. Can't use my iPhone in virtual racing. So far I haven't seen a virtual tactical device, so it is back to basics. Watch the compass, watch the log, and get your head out of the boat. Sounds like a lotta Fun Fizzin is coming up...

Friday, September 7, 2012

Destination Paradise IV

I'd better get on with this story while I can still remember the details... If you need to catch up, go read the other posts on Destination Paradise...

So there it was... After sailing for hours and hours we finally reached it, - Coconut Island; As far away as possible. The end of the world. Not as in Ragnarok. This is far more peacefull. This is just where the world ends as in you cannot sail any farther.
Destination Paradise ahead
Perhaps not the true movie version with only sand, palms and crabs, but it looked nice, and there was a pier and a little hut. There was also a powerboat parked at the pier, so we quietly parked the boat and looked around to see if we were alone. Noone there it seemed. This is really far away... Those reefs - top right - in the shot below... they mark the sorta "physical edge" of the virtual world ;-)
Remote secluded far away island
Anyway, there was a hut. Inside the hut we found any sailors best friend; The cocktail bar. Woohoooo. It is funny how thirsty you get from sailing. That goes for virtual sailing too. So here we are... the two of us and two Tequila Sunrise... Yummy... May I never grow too old for those.
XL Tequila Sunrise
Mmmhmm... We sat there for a while just chatting and relaxing. Me, I was a little overwhelmed by the long troublefree sail, - as in no computer trouble. But an island is an island, and as such it must be explored. There's allways a magic spot waiting to be found. I know from the Swedish archipelago. The first taste of that I got at Hallands Väderö. Beautiful place.
A magic spot
It turned out this Island had more than one magic spot... The first one is actually visible on the second image in this post. Here's a closer look; Me and Marin relaxing, enjoying the view... More on that in a future post.

To be continued...
(Continued from Destination Paradise III)