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The future of the “Laser” (ILCA)

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Sam.Spoons View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sam.Spoons Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 9:13pm
Originally posted by CT249

They bother to make them longer-lasting, without the fatigue problem of highly stressed alloy spars.

I still bet they're faster.......
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Daniel Holman View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Daniel Holman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 9:14pm
Originally posted by JimC

The tale is that the layup is a complex mixture of glass and carbon to get the properties right.


Yep some carbon may have been waved in the general direction of it. It’ll be sandbagged with more glass which is something like a third of the stiffness of IM carbon And or a load of hoop direction material.
What beggars belief is the length of the “development” process required to achieve this end.

Lots of hoop is used to get wall thickness up to the min 1.5mm wall on “proper” spars where less near the zero axis gets the compression and bending performance above hounds, but you can crush the spar tying it into the trailer.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Daniel Holman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 9:16pm
Originally posted by Sam.Spoons


Originally posted by CT249


They bother to make them longer-lasting, without the fatigue problem of highly stressed alloy spars.

I still bet they're faster.......


No. If stiffness and weight are the same, static And dynamic performance is the same.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sam.Spoons Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 9:50pm
I'll gladly bow to your greater knowledge Daniel. My exposure to carbon masts started with windsurfing masts. I started serious racing when ally masts were de rigour for racing and fibreglass were for recreational use only, later on Carbon made it's appearance with much stiffer and lighter sticks (my 4.8m 100% carbon race mast weighed around 1.4kg when fibreglass masts weighed 3kg+ and were as stiff as a pool noodle). Much was discussed about carbon content and it's affect on performance, after weight gust response was the main advantage, 100% carbon masts would give and return much faster than lower carbon content masts. It never occurred to me that this might have a lot to do with mass (my materials physics is not up to much TBF). But, forgive me for being cynical, I still don't believe that the Laser Carbon top section is not quicker than the ally version.

FWIW My Carbon Blaze mast (based on very limited experience so far) is nicer to use than the M7 Alloy mast especially in a blow, it is 2.5 kg lighter but, supposedly has the same stiffness and curve (will check when I get time). Are you saying the quicker gust response I'm feeling is all down to mass or is the characteristics of the Carbon fibre construction also a factor?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Daniel Holman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 10:36pm
Yes Sam it’s all about mass less mass aloft at same stiffness increases the natural frequency (=(k/m)^0.5) hence the faster return.
With carbon (100%) designed properly ie mostly axial you can achieve a big gain in stiffness or reduction in weight or a combo of both, both of which manifest in higher natural frequency ie higher return.
Lighter weight aloft also imparts less force back into the boat or board ie feels lighter in the hands.
Bit like a car with light alloys ie lower unsprung weight has tyres. That will be spending more time on contact with the road. Laser topmasts are 2.6 to 3.1kg in alloy world. These new ones will be the same with the same stiffness. They get over the fundamental failing of the Ali mast namely yielding at the collar, straightening of which leads to work hardening and then failure, so there is a reliability gain.
I expect that you could replicate the stiffness of the Ali mast in a carbon spar weighing a kilo. But then it could no longer be called a one design class, as there would be a notable performance gain (absolute weight reduction, and high up so less pitching moment, better dynamic response. )
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Daniel Holman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 10:41pm
Glass is not a bad thing in masts as it’s better for impact and can take higher strains ie can bend further before snapping, even if it’s heavier and bendier than carbon. It’s also a lot cheaper.
Hence why there was maybe still is a big range of carbon content in windsurf masts - for equivalent stiffness ie IMCs you can get a 30% carbon mast the rest being glass I guess, and probably richer in resin, which will be about twice the weight of a 100% carbon stick (which is still actually around 40 to 45% resin btw)
You can then go even lighter for same stiffness with high modus carbon fibres. Issue is the stiffness goes up but the strength does not necessarily follow. And I have paid £100 for 10m of 50mm wide HM tape before ie it’s ruinous compared to Normal “cooking” carbon grades.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sam.Spoons Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Sep 19 at 10:50pm
Thanks for taking the time to explain Daniel  Thumbs Up
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