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Crew Weight Limits

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Post Options Post Options   Quote brys Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Crew Weight Limits
    Posted: 26 Aug 04 at 9:52am

Are these a good thing or bad thing?

Do they restrict the growth of classes?

How many clases impose strict weight limits on their crews.....?

Why are they set so low?

The Cork 1720 has a limit of 450 Kg and the SB3 is set at 270 kg.

Has anyone suffered from these limits by being over or under?

Are they a manufacturers markeing tool?

Arguements please........

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stefan Lloyd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Aug 04 at 2:51pm

I don't think they are set "so low". 270kg for an SB3 is an average of 90kg. That is pretty heavy for a fit male and it is almost inconceivable that an athletic woman would weight that much. I know that theorectically you can sail an SB3 4-up, but almost nobody does.

Do you suffer if you have a lightweight crew in a keelboat? Absolutely yes. I owned a 707 for several years. Having 4 crew on the rail instead of 5 cost 3-4 boatlengths up a mile-long beat. You don't get it back downwind. Repeat that over 3-4 beats and it is going to make a huge difference to your finishing position.

Almost all major keelboats operate a weight limit and it invariably pays to sail close to it. If you don't have a weight limit, all the winning will be done by large men. Most owners find it is hard enough to find good, keen, talented crew without needing them to be heavy-weight males as well.  

If you want a class without weight limits, sail a 707.

 

 

 

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Post Options Post Options   Quote brys Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Aug 04 at 3:41pm

What about those of us who are not in the first flush of youth and weigh in at 110kg and whos two sons are 95kg plus....are we to be barred from sailing a class that appeals to us?

Surely on light wind days the racing snake midgets will win and the fat boys will loose and vice versa on the plus force 5 days...thats how it has always been...why do we try to level the playing field allthe time.....? 

We pay our class dues and the entry fees and yet get chucked due to being a bit on the large size.....seems a bit elitist and unfair!!!

 

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Anarchist Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Aug 04 at 4:08pm

On the big boats you''ll get flicked off if you're too heavy or you'll be given a warning to lose 5 kilos. The answer - Eat less pies, move to another class or change crew. These are issues faced by ALL sailors so you can hardly claim it unfair or whinge about it. Weight limits are placed on boats not because someone reckons that it sounds like a nice number - the boats design, handling and performance are taken into account to give the best weight to achieve the best results all round. This means that you can go to an event on the limit, knowing that no one is going to have an advantage if the breeze picks up.

I reckon weight limits are a good thing but a real bi-atch to stick to!! 

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stefan Lloyd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Aug 04 at 6:18am
Originally posted by brys

What about those of us who are not in the first flush of youth and weigh in at 110kg and whos two sons are 95kg plus....are we to be barred from sailing a class that appeals to us?

I weigh 75kg and I'm not in the first flush of youth either. If I said "A Finn appeals to me and it's unfair that heavier sailors do better" I don't think I'd get a lot of sympathy. I'd be told to sail a boat that is suitable for me, or get to the gym and put some muscle on. If you really want to sail a particular class and you are too heavy, have you considered losing some weight? Sorry if that sounds blunt. Alternatively, sail a class without a weight limit like 707s.

If it were true that lightweights in keelboats gained in light airs what they lost in heavy, then skippers wouldn't work hard to make sure that their crew were as close as possible to the class maximum. Everyone who has sailed keelboats seriously knows it pays to be close to the class maximum weight. 

 

 

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Post Options Post Options   Quote brys Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Aug 04 at 10:45am

I think you misunderstood the point!

If you fancy sailing a Finn then you can...there is NO Class RULE that says a guy wieghing 140Kg cannot sail one!  It is the classes that have crew weight limit rules that I rail against!

If you are lucky enough to only weigh 70Kg then it makes sense to sail a Laser or similar....

I feel that the class associations that bar people crewing their boats with who they want to sail with are being disciminating against heavy people...They are often lead by the nose by the manufacturers who want the boat to have a certain image.....I really believe that heavy crews in boats like the Cork 1720 and SB3 ONLY have the advantage on the MINORITY of days....eg Force 5 plus when they can and do sail flatter and faster than the lightweights...It is all a con by the builders and sailmakers....Lightweights ragging their non reefable sails up the beat tear out their sails quicker than a heavy weight team who can keep their sails driving in the heavy stuff...Us heavy boys ALWAYS pay the penalty in sub force 5 by not sailing so quickly......therefore weight limits on these boats are total BS.

 

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stefan Lloyd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Aug 04 at 8:28am

You are convinced crew weight in a keelboat doesn't matter because it evens out over the conditions. Believe that if you want. However all competitive skippers in high-profile classes like J24s, Mumm30s, Stars have long since concluded otherwise: that it pays, on average, to sail at the maximum allowable crew weight.

I have helped run a keelboat class. The weight limit is chosen so that the class doesn't become dominated by heavyweghts, hence excluding much of the male population and all of the female. If only heavyweights can win, in the long run only heavyweights will choose to play. Having a weight limit is nothing to do with "image": it is to do with allowing the maximum number of competitive sailors to sail in your class.

And no I can't sail a Finn at 75kg. I'm a racing sailor. If I don't stand an earthly chance doing well, why bother? You might as well say: you could always sail an SB3 2-up and stay inside the weight limit.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stefan Lloyd Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Sep 04 at 7:36pm
If anyone is interested, Bryan has also had this debate at in the chat room at http://www.lasersb3.com/ 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Gael Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Oct 04 at 7:21pm
I think weight limits can work well - especially if the limit is set in such a
way as it makes it viable to either opt for a larger number of crew where
you have lightweights on board, or smaller number of heavyweights - eg
in the Mumm 30s it seems to work...

Your answer brys is to have a girl on the boat... puzzles me why there
aren't more sailing in the class at the moment.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Adoo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Oct 04 at 12:02pm

Interestingly SB3's weight limit at 270kgs, while the Etchells is at 285kgs, average weight of 95kgs each.

I guess the big guys like DC wouldn't be able to do it if it was less.

Swan 45 weight limit is 950kg. They are now having random weigh ins through the event, not one weigh in at the start. It means that "dipping" for the weigh in is out, the crew has to be that weight through out the event. The total weight includes the owners - should this be the case? Feels a bit mean, they paid all that money, and then need to diet to make the weigh in.

Better to be overpowered in the gusts than underpowered in the lulls!
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