New Posts New Posts RSS Feed: Demise of the Laser 4000
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Register Register  Login Login

Demise of the Laser 4000

 Post Reply Post Reply Page  <12345 12>
Author
NickA View Drop Down
Really should get out more
Really should get out more
Avatar

Joined: 30 Mar 05
Location: United Kingdom
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 705
Post Options Post Options   Quote NickA Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 10:07am
Originally posted by Rupert

I suspect most of us are at a standard where we can either concentrate on racing a boat that is easy to sail, or concentrate on sailing a boat that is difficult, leaving no room for the tactics of racing.


Fair point.  But I like a combination of the two!  Downwind tactics in a fast asymmetric is more fun for me than chugging down wind in a slow boat and hanging off a trapeze up wind a lot more pleasant than hiking. 

And the L4000 is not a "difficult" boat any more (probably less so) than an RS400, let alone a Merlin Rocket, which retains their popularity.

... having said which as the frequent helm of a Javelin I end up soaking down wind and hiking up wind; the raw power and drama of a fast reach makes up for it though!
3604 ...lapse of reason
Javelin 558
Back to Top
Mozzy View Drop Down
Groupie
Groupie


Joined: 21 Apr 20
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 78
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mozzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 10:21am
I did some podcast youtube episodes during lock-down, and a couple were chatting to Luke McEwen and Andy Jeffries. The main point of the discussion was how they have remained competitive using the original deck sheeting method. But there was also quite a bit of reminiscing about the 4000 hey day which they were both part of. 

I think fast asymmetric are great, but only for the right sailors at the right venue. So, it's always going to be a niche. 

I think after the initial boom the niche has contracted back down to it's natural level. And the sport has generally contracted too. 

Initially the 4000 was early to market. Then afterwards it was low cost. But the 800 does almost everything better than the 4000. Better equalisation, better performance, similar in difficulty level. 

When I moved out of 29ers a few friend got 4000s because they were cheap. But then the 800s brought out the new deck, which created a value market. 

The 800 has done better at evolving it's offering. When these boats came out all their new sailors would be coming from traditional classes, so they had to be set up to have some familiarity to traditional classes. The 800 then went square top. And finally, they have allowed crew sheeting. These factors all make the 800 much more attractive to where quite a bit of new blood to the class is coming from (29er sailors) and puts it in a good position for where they might aspire to go (49er). 

Of course when the changes were made there was concern it would alienate the 800 from it's traditional base, ex-4000 sailors and adults who have sailed traditional boats all their life and fancy more of a blast. Both those groups typically favour deck sheeting and fortunately, both these groups can still use deck sheeting and still be competitive. 

The 800's now is about 25% ex 29er sailors.
Back to Top
furtive View Drop Down
Posting king
Posting king


Joined: 30 Mar 05
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 186
Post Options Post Options   Quote furtive Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 10:38am
Originally posted by Mozzy

Better equalisation

Hmm, not convinced by this. Within a much narrower range, the 800 system works well, and it uses righting moment in the formula which it needs as it's twin-wire. But the 4000 system works just as well over a much, much bigger weight range.
Back to Top
Mozzy View Drop Down
Groupie
Groupie


Joined: 21 Apr 20
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 78
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mozzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 11:34am
Well, the 800 is a true weight and leverage equalisation over 15 kilos. 

The 4000 is like 50% equalisation but over a broader range with much bigger integers. The correction for 4000 leverage are also based on leverage assumptions for given weight, although happy to be corrected on that.

Personally, I'd rather a more accurate equalisation surrounding the true ideal weight of class then a clear drop off outside the weight range. 

For the 800s those off the scale light will be kids sailing 29ers, and those off the scale heavy are blokes sailing 14s / 49ers. So there is little to gain from extending the range. 

Extending the range also means the total performance cost for the system is greater (more weight carried / more leverage sacrificed). 

So yeah, maybe not 'better'. But it certainly has some advantages. 
Back to Top
H2 View Drop Down
Really should get out more
Really should get out more
Avatar

Joined: 26 Jul 17
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 561
Post Options Post Options   Quote H2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 3:08pm
Hmmm - this might explain why my wife no longer sails after I tried to teach her the basics of sailing as my crew in a L4000. Poor lady is still married to me!
H2 #115
Back to Top
Chris_H View Drop Down
Groupie
Groupie
Avatar

Joined: 13 May 20
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 45
Post Options Post Options   Quote Chris_H Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 4:53pm
Mozzy - I appreciate the benefits of the 800 - you have sold it too me ;-) , but its in a different league and skillset to the L4K. To me, the 800 is the new-age equivalent of the Topper Boss/L5K - vastly different boats to the L4K

Edited by Chris_H - 02 Jul 20 at 5:00pm
Back to Top
JimC View Drop Down
Really should get out more
Really should get out more
Avatar

Joined: 17 May 04
Location: United Kingdom
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 6291
Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 6:27pm
To my mind the trouble with the 4 Tonner, and which it had in common with its Topper contemporaries, was that it simply wasn't a great boat. To my mind the only really good boat among the single string asymmetric set was the 29er, and even if it hadn't blagged the youth market its still probably too full on for a mass market two hander.
Back to Top
NickA View Drop Down
Really should get out more
Really should get out more
Avatar

Joined: 30 Mar 05
Location: United Kingdom
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 705
Post Options Post Options   Quote NickA Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jul 20 at 9:49pm
Yes the 29er is the best of them, but only for lightweights. Attempting to sail one with my early teenage sons I was always crouched down in the bottom to keep them on the wire. It's a boat for two teenagers ... and spoiled for mere mortals by being an RYA squad boat sailed by youthfull gods who know all the rules and all the tactics ;-)
3604 ...lapse of reason
Javelin 558
Back to Top
Mozzy View Drop Down
Groupie
Groupie


Joined: 21 Apr 20
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 78
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mozzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 20 at 7:08am
The 29er has done a really good job of making updates. Of course it's easier to do so when you have an active class association and a demand for new / better boats. 

Very few are major changes to the class, but to give Julian his credit, he has really pressed to ensure niggles are ironed out. Each individual change was probably quite a bit of hassle for builders on their own, but cumulatively it's a much better package now than it was in 2000.

It also gives some tangible features as to why a new 29er is better (if not faster) than an old one. Which helps new boat sales.  

- Leaky aluminium foils == grp foils
- Leaky deck bars == Moulded deck kick bars
- Leaky sluice holes == moulded sluice holes
- Spinny halyard cutting top sections == inset halyard block
- Dangerous and topside only bowsprit / tack line == doughnut omni-directional bowsprit
- Fixed forestay giving 'pot luck' rake == half turnbuckle forestay to allow precise rake setting (15mm) without purchasing new forestay
- Shroud plates == turnbuckles
- elastic only additions == include thimbles and cord for take up systems / trap elastics
- crap daggerboard packing == any daggerboard packing
Back to Top
Paramedic View Drop Down
Really should get out more
Really should get out more


Joined: 27 Jan 06
Location: United Kingdom
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 723
Post Options Post Options   Quote Paramedic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 20 at 8:42am
Originally posted by JimC

To my mind the trouble with the 4 Tonner, and which it had in common with its Topper contemporaries, was that it simply wasn't a great boat. To my mind the only really good boat among the single string asymmetric set was the 29er, and even if it hadn't blagged the youth market its still probably too full on for a mass market two hander.

No, they weren't. But I think the hull shape and design concept was 10 years ahead of the construction method and rigs being sufficiently affordable and available to make them 1000 times better at a similar price point. The 5000 is heavier (By 1 kilo) than a Wayfarer!


Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply Page  <12345 12>

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.665y
Copyright ©2001-2010 Web Wiz
Change your personal settings, or read our privacy policy