Intro Overview The Refit Conclusions Terminology Drawings Materials


Before: Windfall in 2001

After: Ready for 2002
I love to tinker. I admit it. I have torn down and rebuilt my radio controlled sailboat "Windfall" every winter since I received it as a Father's Day gift in 1999. After my third attempt, I am finally satisfied with the result.
"Windfall" is a "Victoria One Design Class" radio controlled sailboat manufactured by Thunder Tiger. The Victoria measures just under 31" long, and weighs a little under 5.0 lbs in its stock configuration. I originally built my yacht using the spars and sails provided in the box. The only major difference between the stock kit and my Victoria was the use of a drum winch in place of the standard servo. With no idea how to sail, I took to the water, and in a healthy breeze the jib tore out at the clew. With no jibstay, the boat went out of control. To complicate matters, the sheets for the drum winch got fouled on deck. I watched helplessly as my Victoria went over a short waterfall and got trapped in the rolling water below. (Much to the amusement of my children) She emerged upright, with her rigging and sails in tatters, but with a dry radio, and no structural damage.
In hindsight, the drum winch servo was not well suited to a boat as small as the Victoria. The drum winch requires a more complex sheet routing which is prone to tangling. The incident also highlighted the need to outfit my Victoria with a better suit of sails.
It was at this point that "Windfall" first went into drydock for a major refit. My goal was to build a competitive "class legal" boat that was more forgiving to the novice sailor. I carefully read all the tips at the Victoria Resource Center, I followed the online forums, and I scraped up as much information on R/C sailing as I could find on the web. My investigation, the advice of people with far more knowledge than I, and a healthy amount of trial and error, have resulted in a boat that is a dream to sail. This article covers the modifications done over three seasons.
Raymond Groothuizen (AMYA #11116)


Intro Overview The Refit Conclusions Terminology Drawings Materials

Copyright 2002 Raymond Groothuizen. All Rights Reserved.