All posts by kurt

Muffolo Racing

 another great video from Simmo.  At first I didn’t notice Simmo roaring up behind the also racing Dragonfly 920 Extreme like it’s at anchor!simmoracing

2nd place for Muffolo at first day of Coppa Dallorso 2013 Regatta (28 nautical miles of racing course) just 9 minutes gap from the first much bigger Trimaran (Dragonfly 920 extreme) battling to the end and beating a 50 footer mega oceanic trimaran, a 8 meters trimaran (Dragonfly 800), and a 7,50 meters catamaran!
1st place in the second race of the next day, with 54 minutes gap from the second (Dragonfly 920 Extreme), a day characterized by strong gusty winds and gales. Starting with strong offshore wind that made us battle side by side at a speed of 18.3 knots, then, near Monterosso, weather wanted to vent all his anger with a huge storm, with gusts detected at 63 knots. Luckily we managed to haul down all the sails on time and we avoided going to the rocks dragged from the fury of the storm, but the scenery around us was really looking like “the perfect storm” movie: sails flapping hard enough to sound like thunders, blowing up sails, boats drifting at the mercy of the gusts at 90 ° heeling with crews in total panic calling for help, and all this in a visibility up to 20 meters! The whole thing lasted a full 30 minutes!!
After this we hoisted the sails again and we resumed our race surfing between 12 and 18 knots until the arrival, finding that the direct challenger was still behind us.
The photo shows one of the rides at 18 knots before the perfect storm arrived.
A Huge thank to FORMULA sponsor for supporting us giving us blue new wonderful sails and SAILORWEAR SAILS for finishing them!
And thank to my father for building Muffolo SUPER STRONG 15 years ago!!

Another Cruise

I just got a pic from a builder out there cruising. Jim Normey built his KHSD 40 cat on Vancouver Island some 10 years ago. He has been out cruising for the last 8 years. I recall he took once a year off to work in Taiwan to build up his cruising kitty. He is about 6′-6″ and looks like a red bearded viking. I imagine he made quite a sight bicycling to work in Taiwan.
He is cruising in Panama now.  Enjoy, Jim.


Bad Sample Test Results

 This year I had a few examples where D-790 tests for USCG certified vessels would have generally good test results, then one test would be way, way low. Nobody could figure it out. At IBEX, Joe Parker asked the right questions and figured it out. It’s so obvious that I’m embarrassed. I will be updating my guide to building test samples.
First, most of the testing is done on triaxial roving. I do always have the guys orient and label the 0 degree on the laminate to be tested. The part I was ignoring and Joe got was what happens in the Z direction. (Like Spock said about Khan “he seems to be exhibiting 2 dimensional thinking.”) . The key is to also orient the 0 degree laminate faces away from the sample centroid. I have not before advised on that. On a two layer laminate, the 0 degree goes face down first.  Then the next layer must be face up.  Of course!  If a sample had both 0 degree faces in the centroid, the results would be miserable.


Back From IBEX 2013

I’m just back from IBEX 2013. The vendors joke was that I was the only person there who wasn’t a vendor nor speaker.  (still cranky about that.  They so rejected my paper on putting QR codes in design prints.  I thought it was great and the future.)  Attendance was way down it seemed.  I saw very few people that I knew.  Next year will be Tampa so maybe that will help.
The big test for me is if I come back with new, useful information that I did not have before. I did. I will post in the coming days.
One big change was that cameras were allowed of the exhibits. I took a lot of pics of cool stuff and will post.
The seminars ranged from very useful (secondary bonding) to the bizarre (design of a yacht by an artist with Frank Gehry).  Actually a Gehry yacht is kind of like an Americas Cup boat, in just one way.  Billionaires showing that they have more money than God and can do things that you could not dream of.  Most boats read efficiency just by the design elements, like curved corners.  The Gehry boat telegraphed that it had no interest in efficiency.  I will find a pic of that.  5 years spent just designing windows and cockpit.

So, back and lots of good stuff coming.  Meanwhile I have to catch up on work here today.

DXF Files

Sending autocad hull section files has become so effortless and common that I sometimes forget that not everybody knows what they are.  When I end up spending a lot of time explaining autocad files, it must mean it’s time for a blog post on them.  First, a *.dxf or *.dwg autocad file is a vector file. That is compared to a raster file such as a jpeg or even PDF.  In a vector file a line for example is defined as being a single entity lying between two points.  In a raster file a line is hundreds or thousands of dots.
That means a line in a vector file is of a definable physical size. Not so with a raster file. In CADD files, that size is almost always real world size. Not to any scale. Real world. What scale are you now? None, you are real world size. Same thing with a dxf file that I send to you. Scale only enters in when it is plotted out.
The one catch however is numeric base or format. Every CADD file has an underlying numeric basis. It could be inches or feet or meters or millimeters. When a dxf file is sent from one computer to another, odds are the numeric base will not be the same. The file you get might be 39.64 times too large or small. Or maybe just 3.something different.  It will be one of  those ratios between imperial and metric usually.  That is why I try to include a scale divot in every file. Its typically on the lower right near the page number. Do a measure distance on it and see if it matches what it should. If not you can easily rescale the drawing to match your own machines real world. Once you have done that, you can do a measure distance on anything and get its size.


I just got a call from Chippy today. I understand that only I and a few select others can call him that. Bob Chilipala. Its been over a year.  I first met him deep in the previous century when he worked for King Fiberglass down near Ewing Street, where my tri was often hauled out.
As far as I can tell, Bob is one of the most creative, gifted composite smiths there is. He creates inventive resins of all kinds. He creates fabrics of all kinds. Jus this week he told me about a new cellulose fabric with properties nearly that of E-glass. Ten years ago he created a basalt fabric. Twenty years ago he had 50 companies. And probably as many patents. Funny thing is he refuses to go online, get a website nor even have an email address.  He usually visits in a beater Toyota pickup stuffed full of composite samples.

We have arranged to catch up at IBEX. Any time spent with Bob is mind bending with all his projects and inventions. I’m amazed they don’t have him giving lectures. Its possible they don’t even know about him.