Sailing Not Bailing
INTRODUCING THE PITTWATER JUNIOR "SELF DRAINING" / UNSINKABLE KIDS’ SAILBOAT
Read the Australian Sailing Test Article by Bob Ross
Dinghy Sports is Australia’s premier builder of sailboats for kids. Since 1985, 234 Sabots have been built by Dinghy Sports. The Sabot is the most popular kid’s sailboat in Australia and is sailed in every state and territory. At the recent Australian Championships, there were over 200 boats in the Junior (2 up) and Senior (under 16) divisions. The other popular kid’s trainer in Australia is the Manly Junior: Dinghy Sports has built over 200 MJ’s as well. It differs from the Sabot in that it is a 2 up boat with 3 sails (main, jib and spinnaker).It is an evenly divided argument as to whether the simple Sabot or the crewed MJ is the best way for kids to start sailing then racing.
Many clubs don’t mind either way and run both classes together (ie. Avalon SC, Lane Cove 12’ SC, Bayview and Vaucluse).
The Manly Junior class and Dinghy Sports worked together to "evolve" the Manly Junior to a modern mini skiff by the addition of a false floor self draining cockpit. Safety was the most important improvement.
The "evolution" of the Pittwater Junior is now complete. Since sailing 3 prototypes (each one a development on the other), we think we have developed the simplest and safest kids sailboat ever.
By combining the best features of the Sabot with the simplicity of a Laser and the modern rig and materials from windsurfing and some rational thinking, we have come up with a boat that is safe, simple and relatively inexpensive.
This boat has the same hull shape and sail plan as a Sabot and can be raced against existing Sabots at club level. (Dinghy Sports will be working with the Sabot class on this).
CHANGES, DETAILS, EVOLUTION, REASONING
1. False Floor Moulding
The Floor is set as low as possible with a curve (up to 100 mm in the centre). The centrecase support and front bulkhead are incorporated in this one-piece moulding.
The false floor is absolutely as low as it could be. Drain holes were cut thru the transom to drain the hull completely dry.
2. Front Tank
When a boat is capsized, too much buoyancy is not good. The boat floats too high, making it hard for the crew to climb up on the centreboard and also causing it to turtle quickly, which could trap a crew member underneath. By reducing the front tank by half, the boat with the false floor floats level and lower in the capsize position. When the boat is righted from a capsize, the water drains out and the boat can be sailed immediately. No bailing bucket or venturi bailer is required.
When the Pittwater Junior is righted from a capsize the false floor does its job, all the water drains out, and the boat floats up on its lines. This makes the boat harder to climb into than a Sabot (which remains half full of water).
All good Sabot sailors know that the best way to get back into a Sabot without swamping it again is by climbing over the transom. Now that the back tank is gone, there is no need for the transom to be so big.
The cut away transom makes the boat a snap to step in or out off the ramp and to re-board after a capsize or a swim.
4. Mast Step & Hull
The Laser style mast step is simple and strong. The new hull is built with a more durable outside skin and weight of 25 Kg.
5. Windsurfer Mast & Boom
These fibreglass / carbon masts are light (3 Kg), relatively cheap ($350.00 with track) and easy to get (any sailboard shop) They are in two pieces and each piece is similar in length to the boom. The mast does not rotate in the step. All three can be kept in the sail bag for easy storage. The plastic track is riveted and glued on. It has a quick release halyard lock. The boom is a simple anodised tube (no sail track).
6. Centreboard Case
Same size as centreboard. No need for slot gasket, centreboard stays in correct position for balance of boat.
Kick-up rudder - new casting design - easy to use. Designed to suit new transom.
The sail plan is the same as a Sabot, as are the black bands measurements. The standard sail is cross cut dacron from North Sails.
Complete boat sail-away (on rigging cradle) - $3,990.00 (including GST). (Introductory, direct-from-factory price). See Price List for further details
Replacement Foils if required. see "Freddy Foils"