A short update from Jonathan Carter:
There has been a slight delay to the build of the new moulds due to an off-site accident to a member of White Formula's staff. Fortunate all is now well and work has restarted on the moulds which should be ready in about four weeks.
The results of the poll of the association members (to date) are given below, the numbers are percentage saying "Yes", "Don't care" and "No". From the results you will see that most of the proposed changes are well supported by the class. The only exception is a move to a carbon mast and boom where we have a 50/50 split for and against. People also sent me longer comments about various aspects that I will consider as we progress the project. Quite a large proportion of those not wanting to see an immediate introduction of the carbon mast say that it is something that we will need to do at some point. I have also had contact with potential buyers who are largely in favour of using a carbon mast. I also had some longer comments about the rudder mounting. This being a critical area I will be talking to various people to ensure that we make the best decision on this.
1 Redesign of the main bulkhead 100 / 0 / 0
2 Internal drainage holes 100 / 0 / 0
3a Foredeck strengthening 100 / 0 / 0
3b Side deck strengthening 100 / 0 / 0
3c Centre deck strengthening 90 / 10 / 0
3d Foot strap stengthening 80 / 20 / 0
4 Steel plate for rudder bolts 60 / 20 / 20
5 Higher main-sheet turret 80 / 20 / 0
6 New drainage grill 90 / 10 / 0
7a Insert for progrip 80 / 20 / 0
7b Dagger board friction plates 90 / 10 / 0
7c Spinnaker pole Groove 100 / 0 / 0
8 Kick Bar 90 / 10 / 0
9 Trapeze anchor point 80 / 10 / 10
10 Better control lines 90 / 10 / 0
11 Redesign spinnaker assembly 80 / 20 / 0
12 Non-rotating mast 80 / 10 / 10
13 Carbon mast and boom 50 / 0 / 50
14 Gnav redsign 100 / 0 / 0
15 Carbon-composite foils 80 / 20 / 0
If you can answer yes to some of the following questions then it probably is.
So do you want….
A single handed Trapeze dinghy?
A fast and exhilarating sail?
A dinghy that is easy to start trapezing with - yet offers challenges once the basics are mastered.
An inherently stable dinghy? To spend more time on the boat sailing than in the water swimming?
A virtually bullet proof boat that is very economical to run.
A class that is one design and so will not be out of date next year?
A dinghy that doesn’t require hours in the gym to sail well?
An active class association and an excellent race circuit?
The option to add an exciting 15m2 asymmetric?
Those of us that have been sailing the Vortex for the last few years know all of these points to be true. So what do you get for your money? The Vortex is one of the fastest and yet stable dinghy’s currently available on the market today. The tunnel hull design means that all the stability is at the edges of the hull plan, making it difficult to roll a Vortex into a capsize. When things go wrong in a Vortex more often than not you get away without a swim.
The symmetrical daggerboards are canted inwards and angled forwards to help induce twist. The windward foil is vertical when the hull skims the surface and is designed to act as a gybing board; at the same time the leeward foil generates vertical lift - ingenious!
The rig rotates for aerodynamic efficiency. The hi-tech Mylar sail has a "fat head" for power, but a relatively conservative leech for gust response and ease of handling. The enclosed gnav and wrap around luff sleeve further reduce aerodynamic drag. Lower shrouds give precise control of mast stiffness.
The uniquely slim tunnel hull form of the Vortex hull combined with high aspect foils gives a very low wetted surface area, especially when flying a hull. Less drag = more speed!
Righting moment is a function of weight and distance from the centre of buoyancy. Due to the tunnel hull, the centre of buoyancy moves to leeward when the Vortex heels, dramatically increasing the righting moment. More righting moment means that the full power of the rig can be applied, even in stronger winds.
"Handling is direct, precise and incredibly responsive .. this boat was designed for me!" Phil Whitehead, National Champion 2005,10-12.
If you own (or are considering) a Standard Vortex (i.e. one without an asymmetric spinnaker), it is worth considering what a kite could do for you...... The Asymmetric Kite adds a new and exhilarating downwind performance to this already wonderful boat. Smooth and fast upwind and now very fast and tactical downwind.
The asymmetric system was developed in 2004 for and on behalf of the Vortex Class Association by four times National Champion Keith Escritt. The system went through several design – test – modify cycles but the final version uses a retractable pole and overall weight has been kept to a practical minimum with the use of a carbon fibre composite pole and chute.
After trials and testing of several shapes and sizes, and following feedback from Keith, and several other 'test pilots' a 15 square metre spinnaker was specifically developed for the Vortex by Colin Goodman and Paul Austin at Hyde Sails.
Superspars supply the carbon fibre spinnaker pole (all the way from New Zealand) - modified and strengthened especially for the Vortex.
The Association would like to extend a special thank you to Dave Winder at Winder Boats (Custom Carbon Chute) and Ashley at Bairstow Engineering (Custom Bow Frame) for their invaluable design contributions.
Thanks also to Mike Saul of MSDS for his advice about fittings and Richard Towers of North West Sails for designing and making the spinnaker socks.
For more information, or a copy of the Fitting Guide ordering and Pricing Details, please contact Mike Saul (see the link for Spare Parts in the menu on the left).