Contender to MPS

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Mark Percival
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Contender to MPS

Postby Mark Percival » Sat Jan 12, 2008 8:58 pm

I sail a Contender at the moment and fancy a change to something a bit more of a challenge. Upwind and reaches are fine but it's just a bit dull downwind and on light wind days.

I've looked at the RS700, but it seems to me that the boat is better suited to heavyweights, or at least those heavier than me. At my weight and height, 74kg and 5'9", I will need the racks on the maximum setting and would have to add 12kg of lead (well 9kg plus intermediate bars) to the boat which kind of defeats the purpose of buying a lightweight boat in my opinion.

I think the Musto Skiff looks a better bet for my body size and looking around this forum it appears there are quite a few others who do very well in the boat at my weight and height.

Are there any others who have made the switch from a Contender? I guess there must be a few. What did you find the biggest differences between the two boats to be and what were your greatest challenges in learning to sail the Musto Skiff?

I will test both the RS700 and the Musto Skiff before making my mind up (hopefully before the Dinghy Show in March), although the Foiling Moth sailors at my club are persuading me to have a go in one of them as well, but I really don't want to go back to hiking again.

-Mark

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Rick
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Postby Rick » Sat Jan 12, 2008 9:36 pm

Ian Renilson is probably best qualified to comment and I'm sure he'll be along here soon to share his wisdom ....
Rick Perkins. GBR

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paul manning
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Postby paul manning » Mon Jan 14, 2008 11:54 am

The skiff was designed by Joachim Harrprecht a long time Contender sailor and builder. His aim was to create a class for exactly the reasons you are considering changing. (a new downwind challenge)

Also, our first major championships was won by Gabriel Wicke, Contender World champion the following year.

I agree with Rick, your best bet is to have a chat with Ian Renilson, and then come to the Dinghy Sailing Show and have a talk to the sailors.
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Ian Renilson
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Postby Ian Renilson » Mon Jan 14, 2008 10:23 pm

Hi Mark:
I sailed a Contender for many years, and loved it :D
But things have moved on - the Musto is the modern equivalent of what the Contender was 30 years ago - the ultimate singlehander (as we used to say).
The Contender is still as good as it was, and it is an excellent low-cost entry to single-handed trapeze sailing - but there's more to singlehanded sailng these days.
As Paul said, a lot of Contender know-how went into the design and development of the Musto, and it shows - the result is a simply-effective design that has been finely-honed for the high-performance singlehanded sailor, such that it makes possible what seemed impossible 10 years ago.
I saw the design on the drawing board in 1997 in Kiel and I said it couldn't be sailed - but I've had to eat my words.
The boat gives you a truly awesome ride, but it is not as difficult to sail as you would imagine - the light weight and simply-effective design mean that it is very 'manageable'.
I'm sure if you can sail a Contender you will get on well with the Musto - you just need to get someone to show you some basic new techniques for handling the kite and you will be away and loving it - with a big :D on your face.
You should make up your own mind against the RS700 by trying both - I didn't get on well with it myself - but it could be personal preferences.
I don't think you should worry too much about body weight - a wide range of sailors compete effectively in the Musto - it's much more important what you do with your weight. I have been about the same weight and height as you for the last few years - although I've porked up a bit recently - and I manage fine. I was always a bit light for the Contender - it was great in the lighter winds but I struggled to compete in stronger breeze - but the Musto seems to be much less weight sensitive across the wind range. I certainly see no need to have weight equalisation.
I hope you come and join us - it's an excellent boat and a great bunch of sailors, and there is a fantastic 'buzz' about the class.
If you want any more specific advice, please contact me direct - see below.
Happy sailing,
Ian R.
Musto Skiff GBR 128
Dalgety Bay SC
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Mark Percival
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Postby Mark Percival » Tue Jan 15, 2008 8:49 pm

Ian

Thanks for the feedback, your comments have reinforced my opinion that the Musto is probably the best choice for me, and hopefully test sails will confirm that. The kite will be interesting I'm sure - I've always had a crew to do that in the past...

I too recall seeing seeing details of the Musto in the late 90s and thinking much the same as you at the time, how could one person sail that?

I'll come and say hello at the Dinghy Show and talk some more.

-Mark

Mark Percival
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Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:57 pm
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Re: Contender to MPS

Postby Mark Percival » Mon Feb 25, 2008 10:20 pm

Update:

Well I tested both boats this weekend, and it has confirmed my initial thoughts that I want a Musto.

I was originally planning on buying a new boat at the Dinghy Show, but the opportunity presented itself and I am now the owner of GBR142. It probably makes more sense learning in an older boat and then trading up to a new one once I have got the hang of it.

One question though, both the daggerboard and rudder have a few chips and scrapes at the base where they have grounded. What's the best way of repairing them?

-Mark


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