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Racing Cobras one-up

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After having spent very little time on the water due to work commitments these past years I am really looking forward to getting back on the boat to get ready for this year's nationals. With appropriate crew thin on the ground (at least in a form willing to spend 4 months training with an out of practice skipper) I have decided to try and focus on sailing one-up. However...

At 6'6" and well over 110kg I have all the righting moment I need to balance a two sail setup. I know however that the rules only permit sailing one-up without the Jib. Can any othe Cobra sailors with one-up experience give me any tips as to how you can tack a one-up Cobra? In my last few races I would have been better doing a 270 degree gybe for all the time I spent stalled out head to wind!

Any other tips would be appreciated.

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There has been much debate at HYC on the issue of mast rake on the Cobra. On the suggestion of yourself and another Vic cobra sailor I tried it forward but was promptly talked out of it by a number of local sail makers and F18/A-class sailors. They insisted I take the mast rake back to get the COE back over the tramp (although not as much as the hobie 16s do). To date I haven't had a great deal of success with either approach.

What us the logic of pushing the COE forward as per your suggestion?

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The F-18 and A sailors are correct for their boats! I know the stingray is a rare case where our masts are further forward than most modern designs because our centreboards should be further back! When 30yrs ago when the stingray went 'big rig' (Mk2) it threw the boat out of balance!

Reading above - Darcy's comment about easing the mainsheet is essential! If you don't ease the mainsheet the rig tends to 'weathervane' half way through the tack and lock you head to wind.

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Thats correct harry,

if you are sailing two up on a cobra, you will want to have your mast rake back a little bit, otherwise you will nosedive too much.

have a look in this photo:


Notice that the crew has one foot on the beam when out on trapeze and the skipper is right next to them and the boats nose is about 200mm out of the water.

The mast rake on this boat is setup perfect for upwind performance.

When you take off a jib and a crew the COE goes backwoods,

So we need to rake the mast forward just a little bit.

If you are still having problems tacking and the mast rake has been moved forward too much

so that you are nose diving too much then you will probally need to kick the rudders under a little bit,

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks for the help everyone.

I finally got a chance to get back on the water today. I reset everything to "factory default" (used the new users manual from cobracat.com) and then got out on the water and... it worked. Four years of casual tinkering and listening to everyone who had an opinion on what I was doing wrong and only sailing a couple of times a year obviously pushed all the setup into a dim dark hole at one extreme of the design that made it completly un-sailable.

So... back to a clean slate and see if I can learn what I need to know before you all come up north at Christmas. Look forward to meeting you all then.

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  • 4 weeks later...


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