For 2016, the focus was on F101’s design, building the prototype and getting out on the water. We then moved into test phase to prove the concept of the platform, both in the UK and in Spain. We have now successfully carried out extensive test sailing sessions and the F101 has come through this phase surpassing all our expectations. It really does do everything that we envisaged and more.
One of our test team even managed a full capsize, to date this has proved very difficult to do - indeed this was the first capsize in anger away from the safe confines of the marina in an early experiment. He successfully righted the boat with ease, using the pre-planned method of flooding one outrigger, sinking this to get the boat to 90 degrees and then righting conventionally. The outrigger then self-drains and off you go - we are however not convinced by his claims that this was intentional for testing purposes!
The next phase is moving into full production. The prototype had a number of components that were custom made, or borrowed from other boats and so we are now finalising the F101’s specific, purpose designed components. These are well underway and the two pre-production boats are planned to be ready in time for the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show.
We're on YouTube! We recently added some great new videos to our YouTube channel, check it out here!
F101 Technical Developments
Some of the projects we have underway...
We are developing a new custom alloy rudder stock with locking mechanism. The tooling is being built and first production stocks will be with us in February.
RUDDER AND MAIN FOIL TOOLING
The tooling is being CNC cut in aluminium blocks. The foils will be two-piece so that the horizontal can be detached for shipping, or replacement. We have also produced a neat custom lock that will hold the foil up when on a trolley and sailing in shallow waters.
As you will see from these photo’s we have been testing a new code Zero. This has tested really well and also looks great! These designs are now being finalised for production at Hydes loft.
This has had many versions in order to satisfy a number of pre-requisites including a robust structure to keep the boat stable; as well as launching, trailing and shipping requirements.
We have been working closely with our partner Harken, in putting together the best and most efficient sail control package. While most of what we needed is standard off the shelf items, we needed to develop a modified furler for the Zero – the excellent news here, is that Harken immediately rose to the challenge and are now developing a production furler system. We should see the prototype at the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show!
The NEW Code Zero
As mentioned above we have been testing a new Code Zero (and settled on a name for it!). Richard Lovering from Hyde Sails joined us for our latest session in Spain to help with development and design thoughts. The original nylon Zero worked well but quickly got taken over, so a flatter, smaller solution was needed. The new Zero performed much better and, with a few small tweaks, will be what we move forward with. A few people have questioned the necessity of the Zero, which is a fair question, What we have found is the following:
Why have a Code Zero?
- Reduced foiling take-off wind speed from 8 knots to 6 knots
- Gets the boat very deep and fast off-wind in 8-12 knots
- Provides a whole new level of fun and challenges to sailing the boat
- Increases the versatility of the boat in terms of wind speed and weight carrying ability
- When sailing 2 up it becomes the crew’s focus for trimming, furling etc.
- Can be utilised in wind ranges up to 15 knots
1+1 = Sailing 2 up!
We have done some more testing of the boat 2 up. We are currently working to finalise a maximum recommended weight, as this clearly loads the boat up considerably, but it is great fun, just as fast and adds a new dimension. Take your friends, partners and/or children out for a spin and make it fun for everyone!
F101's latest YouTube videos...
Coming to the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show
See one of our pre-production F101 boats on the Harken stand at the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show, stand G8, right next to the Suzuki Main Stage. Alan, Jerry and F101 Designer, Ron Price, will all be on hand to answer your questions. We will have our order book handy as well as a Dinghy Show special launch offer!