FA Council at AGM last year required your Technical Committee to prepare and submit several changes to our rules.
We were asked to delete the requirement that flags on sails should be made by an ISAF-approved manufacturer. The main reason for the requirement was to avoid a situation where people would use inferior flags which might fall off during a regatta. Experience suggests that many cases of flags falling off have been due to them being stuck on badly – for example being stuck on to damp or salty sails. We obtained agreement for the deletion by arguing that Finn sailors were smart enough to require good quality and well prepared equipment. Please be smart enough! The Rule is at C.10.3. See the panel. There have been some cases where Equipment Inspectors have not been satisfied that the measurement band on the boom is adequate – in particular when the band is made of sticky tape. The wording of the rule has been changed to require “A boom outer limit mark which shall be distinctively coloured and painted on.” See F.3.4 (a)(3). The big issue of the year was the requirement “that TC should develop and submit to ISAF a Rule Change that would specify more clearly which materials other than wood and GRP would be permissible in future hulls, and where. In doing so TC should consult with builders to ensure that good practice be allowed to develop, and should have careful regard to cost implications. In particular the use of Carbon Fibre should be reviewed.” The former rule said that “additional stiffening and local reinforcement may be of any material”, and for several years boats have been appearing with carbon fibre fashion stripes in the deck, or on the thwart and centreboard case capping. We started the exercise by trying to define places where carbon fibre would be allowable (the usual reason is to make the boat look good!), but eventually this line of thought just produced a mess, and some clear thinking by Balazs helped towards a final conclusion that we should ban carbon fibre from the main structure of the hull. With our hull weight, builders can make a strong and stiff hull without using carbon, and by removing the option we can avoid the possibility of somebody building a boat with high proportions of expensive carbon, for example in the deck, and claiming that the carbon is within the rules. The revised Rule is at D.3.1.
In my time as Chairman TC, nearly all our Rule changes have been clarifications or rewordings. The changes to the hull materials are more significant – some builders have to change internal stiffener materials etc. I want to record that, when discussing the matter with our builders, TC were greatly helped by their positive attitude and contributions to our work, and I am very grateful for this.
C10.3. Sail Identification Amendment: C.10.3 IDENTIFICATION (a) The national letters and sail numbers shall comply with the RRS, See also G.1.4 (b). except where prescribed otherwise in these class rules. National letters and sail numbers shall be made from additional material of contrasting colour, firmly attached to the sail. National letters and sail numbers shall not be painted on. (b) As an exception to G.1.4 (a), for winners of the Finn Gold Cup and for Olympic Gold Medallists in the Finn Class, the sail insignia waves may be coloured Gold. (c) At the ISAF Sailing World Cup and the ISAF Sailing World Championship, or when required by the Notice of Race, a skipper’s national flag, corresponding to the national letters, of nominal size 740 x 443 mm shall be applied to each side of the sail, positioned such that the aft edge of each flag is between 50 and 100 mm of from the leech and the upper edge is between 50 and 100 mm below the second lower batten pocket. The flags shall be made from additional material. by an ISAF approved manufacturer as listed at http://www.sailing.org/classesandequipment/FINN.php) Permanent ink pens or similar shall not be used to make the national flags.
The other rule changes just change or move existing wording to suit the latest Standard Class Rules and Equipment Rules of Sailing and in one case the latest Racing Rules of Sailing! When reviewing the Class Rules, the Russian judges noticed that in our Pumping Rule, a cross reference referred to “42.3(i) Sailing instructions may, in stated circumstances, permit propulsion using an engine or any other method, provided the boat does not gain a significant advantage in the race.” I can assure sailors that, although radical changes to the Pumping Rule have been suggested in the past, this wrong reference is just because the 2013-16 RRS added a new paragraph, and I didn’t notice the change.
FINNFARE MARCH 2014
The official magazine of the International Finn Class