Sail Materials

Discuss the IOM class rules and interpretations

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Roy648
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Joined: 13 Feb 2008, 00:01
Location: New Zealand

Sail Materials

Post by Roy648 » 23 May 2009, 23:02

I am starting this thread so that the discussion can be moved from the World Championship 2009 thread where it is no longer particularly relevant.

Barry suggested simply inserting one word - Specification, and when I saw it thought ahha - thats what was needed to replace "type and thickness" which I was not overly happy with.

However, the suggestion still leaves the word PLY which is a DEFINED word and exclusively singular. It leaves us with referring to 'a sheet'.

Perhaps "SPECIFICATION OF PLY" or maybe better "SPECIFICATION OF MATERIAL" which would eliminate the singular sheet.?

In my other post I expressed the view to open discussion with the object of getting the wording correct. Thank you Barry for starting the ball rolling
Roy Granich

RoyL
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Post by RoyL » 24 May 2009, 02:02

We just received a very interesting response from ISAF Technical regarding their view on some of our prior proposed class rule changes.

Most interesting for purposes of this discussion is that we were essentially told that ISAF wants its classes to vote for general principles and that exact rules language should be worked out between the class and ISAF Technical.

Seems to me that this might make a lot of lengthy discussions here on how rules should be best worded moot.

Hopefully, this ISAF response will be available here shortly for everyone to review.

Roy648
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Post by Roy648 » 24 May 2009, 02:49

Thank you Roy.

I'm afraid though that kind of "overseer" statements scare the hell out of me.

One can see the logic from an ISAF point of view "keep things as standard as possible across all classes". But from the IOM point of view, and in fact the RSD future discussion, it does somewhat appear that a loss of control may eventuate and could well be the justification for the impost of fees.

I hope I am wrong and will await the ISAF response.
Roy Granich

Roy648
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Location: New Zealand

Post by Roy648 » 24 May 2009, 04:58

From World Champs 2009
Roy648,

I have struggled with this as well. While I would like to believe I know the intent of the class rules, it is possible that ply thickness was never intended to be controlled.

It is possible they intended to make legal a sail that had a 3mil head panel and a 1.5mil foot. That would still be considered a single ply sail as opposed to making a sail that has 2x 1.5Mil layers in the head (3Mil total) and only 1 1.5Mil layer in the foot. The sail would be the same thickness, but it one instance the sail would still be the same ply (quantity 1) while the other would not because it would have 2 plys in the head and only one in the foot.

Which is right, what was intended, and what is best for the class is not entirely known.

If the intent is single ply, mainly uniform thickness sails then I believe you idea would make a lot of sense.

Regards,
Jim
Hi Jim,

The issue of number of ply is addressed under G.3.1.(a)(1) and G.4.1.(a)(1). - .... single ply sail

It cannot be of different thicknesses because (a)(2) says ... same ply, with the definition of ply in ERS being a sheet of sail material.

I would agree that it would be impossible, without referring to the original authors of the rule, to accurately determine the intent. What we can do, however, is determine the most likely intent by reference to the words and tracing back to the definitions in the ERS and whether that determination fits with what the majority want to see.

Whatever, reading RoyL's post it may be wasted effort to try and find any new wording. Opening the discussion to try and get a concensus on the meaning may be more fruitful.

Cheers
Roy Granich

Jan Dejmo
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Joined: 31 Mar 2009, 08:51

Post by Jan Dejmo » 24 May 2009, 11:12

The original class rules wording, based on the IYRU Sail Measurement Rules, was: "The same cloth shall be used throughout the body of the sail."

In the 2002 class rules, now based on the ERS, this was changed to: "The body of the sail shall consist of the same ply throughout ..."

Inserting the ERS definition - "a sheet of sail material" - in this class rule, as have been pointed out in the discussion, does not make sense and needs to be amended.

valpro
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Post by valpro » 24 May 2009, 21:47

As promised, I contacted RYA Technical to ask about this matter. I had a reply from Bas Edmonds who's rely was as follows:-
'My personal understanding is that when the term "body of the sail shall consist of the same ply throughout" is that it would mean the same cloth product code, but may be different rolls of the same cloth product code. My personal opinion is that a diferent coloured cloth of the same weight is not permitted under such a rule.
An example would be in the Enterprise class, you could not substitute a white panel of the same weight as a blue panel as it is not the same ply material'
He goes on to offer to approach ISAF for an official interpretation, should one be sought.
So Lester was at least partly right in his contention. The definition of Ply has obviously moved on somewhat over the years from what I was taught originally and this suprises me somewhat, because I attended an RYA re-certification course for Sail Measurers last spring and while the topic of Ply came up this aspect was not discussed. So I learnt something new along with a lot of others.
The problem now, as I see it, is that firstly, the rule must be changed and made a lot clearer and while this can be dealt with by way of an official interpretation at this point, giving time to formulated something suitable ready for next year, we certainly do have an ongoing problem .
Out there we have a lot of sails with multi coloured panels, made and bought in good faith over a number of years, measured and signed. In my opinion the most realistic way to deal with this is to 'grandfather' the whole lot and post a date of (say) 6 weeks after an interpretation is issued to allow sails in manufacture and transit to be delivered and measured before the deadline. In redrafting we could also incorporate the matter of coloured trim and corners.
Secondly we need to take into account this matter of the materials used . Bas's coment about materials being of 'the same product code' is entirely right in the full sized world, where the sailmaker orders a roll or rolls of ABC 123 from the maker of their choice to make his sails. But how can you prove the origin of the film or its specification at the point of measurement?
This isnt goint to be easy to deal with, so I think we should not rush into a hasty rule change here but take time to investigate and get it right.
Val

RoyL
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Post by RoyL » 25 May 2009, 00:17

Val: I think the good news here is that I don't believe there are many mutli-colored sails extant in the IOM Class. Never seen them at any clubs or national races here in the US and don't recall any in pictures from the recent worlds or continentals. At some point we should probably check with the various NCAs and try to ascertain the scope of this problem.

Jan Dejmo
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Post by Jan Dejmo » 25 May 2009, 08:16

Val

The defined term "ply" first appeared in the IYRU Sail Measurement Rules 1993 and was: "A layer or layers of sail material (the word ply is both singular and plural)"

The definition was changed with the introduction of the Equipment Rules of Sailing 1997-2000 and has since remained: "A sheet of sail material."

As Roy, I have never seen any One Metre sails, in real life or in pictures, with the body of the sail being multi-coloured, but that of course does not mean that none have been made.

Barry Chisam
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Post by Barry Chisam » 25 May 2009, 22:06

For what its worth. When trying to write some rules for a local full sized class we decided that it was not a good idea to try and write rules to include boats that were highly unlikely to race. We stuck to rules which would be simple to put into practise and be healthy for the class.
I for one see no reason to beat ourselves around the head in an effort to try and fit in the few skippers who may like to have multi coloured sails.

'The parts throughout the body of the sail shall be of the same specification ply and of a single colour'.

Barry Fox CAN262
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Design: V8
Location: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Post by Barry Fox CAN262 » 26 May 2009, 00:12

As the owner of a brand new (but 4 year old) multi-colored jib sail I am happy to hang them on the wall and leave that behind with something along the lines of Barry's (what a good name) suggestion.

Technical rules that require interpretation are generally not very good ones. Technical rules should not try too hard to economize on words when the result is somewhat open. Where an interpretation is required (and will be from time to time) then that interpretation needs to find its way into the rules at the next opportunity.

In many of our rules discussions, we have beat each other up for some period of time until someone seems to find an original document that more clearly defines what the intention was at a point in the history of the class. Once you find out the intention it is often easy to see what the words might have meant to say. Intentions are fine but years later it is the actual words that matter.

Sometimes it isn't years before rules are questioned either. Look at the analogy of the F1 diffuser upheaval this year. A few, chosen teams were put together to make the cars easier to pass. They wrote some rules to cover how the under side of the cars should be configured. Then those rules went out to everyone without any of the intention discussion attached. Some people read the rule and built cars that fit the rule but not the intention. The rule counts not the intention.

So let's make the rule say what we want to happen and carry on. If we only want white sails then say so. Although asking for white sails is incomplete as well without some technical description of shading, luminescence, etc.

The "specification" word is going to be be hard to enforce exactly but if they look the same through out and are a single ply then it is likely as close as we can get.

And my sail is too small for any of my other non-IOM boats. Oh well it will make a nice wall decoration and story line.
Barry Fox
CAN 46
Vancouver Island, BC, Canada

Bruce Andersen
USA NCA Officer
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Post by Bruce Andersen » 26 May 2009, 08:10

The ISAF position on rules is basically: we decide on what they should say and they specify the verbage to comply with ISAF terminology, definitions, and form.

Since much of the arguments on this and other boards center around the actual words rather than the intent of the rules, perhaps this may be a good idea, as long as lines of communication/education remain open and collegial.

IMHO, they want us to specify intent and they author the specific wording of the rule. An active RSD with IOMICA representation (which was the original intent of RSD) that can interact with ISAF on our behalf will be a good step forward and hopefully will happen once we vote in new RSD members.

valpro
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Post by valpro » 26 May 2009, 11:04

In principle I agree with Barry C. In writing rules you have to tread a careful line between catering for the top sector of the class, who usually drive both the rules and the development and the grass roots who just want to go sailing. In my experience, trying to tie things down too specifically just makes more problems, which is why I said that we could now, and should, take time over this.
But Barry Fox is also right that when technical rules require interpretation, they are generally not well written. The only exception to this would be where developments in materials or techniques challenge the written wording of the rule. And we English speakers should not underestimate how difficult it is for people whose first language is not English to read and understand the rules. You can translate the words but getting the real meaning across is more difficult.
Val

Barry Chisam
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Post by Barry Chisam » 26 May 2009, 20:15

I agree that specification could be difficult to check but not any more than density of ballast or specification of alluminium alloy in spars. In both cases a simple declaration by the skipper is considered adequate.

valpro
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Post by valpro » 26 May 2009, 22:57

Barry, that raises the whole question of whether a rule that cannot be checked by the methods open to measurers is worth the paper it is written on. With no materials certificates or statements by the supplier or markings on the relevant materials how can the owner be reasonably expected to sign up to a statement that the materials comply. He/she just wont know.
Val

Barry Chisam
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Joined: 20 May 2004, 22:10

Post by Barry Chisam » 26 May 2009, 23:20

So what does it mean when we as owners sign the declarations on the measurement forms?
We do not sign saying 'to the best of my knowledge.
We are saying catagoricaly that there is no material denser than lead and that only permitted alluminium alloy is used when of course few if any of us have the slightest idea.
So we put our faith in our suppliers and say what we hope to be true.
The alternative is to not sign the declaration and leave probably 99% of IOMs uncertified.
Of course you are right Val the declarations are worthless, unless of course I am the only skipper who has not had his masts and ballast tested for their metalergical properties.

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