Welcome to the International Class Association website for the RS Aero. Here you will find all there is to know about the RS Aero including the latest news, how to register your boat, and links to relevant documents.
"Another top tip is to tie a piece of shock cord from the tiller to the toe straps. This keeps the tiller central as the boat comes up, it is also useful if you stop the boat to sort something out or stop for a drink. When sailing normally you will not be aware of the shock cord.?
Could someone possibly paste a picture of this - sounds like a good idea but can't quite visualise it.
Another top tip is to tie a piece of shock cord from the tiller to the toe straps. This keeps the tiller central as the boat comes up, it is also useful if you stop the boat to sort something out or stop for a drink. When sailing normally you will not be aware of the shock cord.
If you go in over the transom, the black plastic bits look fragile but they’re not. You can put your full weight them. The thing NOT to do is lean on the tiller. The other thing to remember is as you put your weight on the transom it sinks a bit - which makes getting in easier.
Thanks, but apart from the tow strap, what are you leaning on or kneeling on to get in. The drainage flaps look quite fragile so I wasn’t sure how to get over them. I am sure it’s just technique either over the side or transom but I just don’t seem to see what that should be from all the videos on here
Help: I can’t get back into the boat from the water. Tried to climb over the gunwhales but had real difficulty reaching the grab rail so had no chance of reaching the tow strap. I used to kick off the centreboard on my Laser to help and this did the trick, no issues climbing in. Board a lot further forward in the Aero so I can do that. Tried the transom but wasn’t sure what to lean on, get knee onto or what to pull on. Any help would be appreciated to avoid another rescue where I got ‘plonked” back onto my Aero from the rib! If it helps I am about 5 feet 3 (and a half) and 53 kg
Try to pull your body quickly over the gunnel, but as soon as you have hips to the gunnel, swing body and legs parallel over the gunnel, and then roll into the cockpit.
Do not try to pull yourself all the way across the boat.
Especially in lighter winds, a bit of tension on the mainsheet helps.
It gets easier and quicker with practice, after three years I hardly remember going over the back quarter, except after a dip in a total drifter.
Don, I would suggest putting some shock cord around the the tiller through the aft hiking strap. This will keep the tiller centered when capsized, which prevents the boat from bearing off when entering from the stern.
While sailing, the shock cord reminds one of larger tiller movements that slow down the boat.
What I usually do to avoid getting the boat coming over me to windwards, I pull in some of the main and bear a bit away to get the sail loaded a bit - enough at least to support and drag me back in. A bit the WaterStart we like while windsurfing... ;-)
So I have completely lost confidence after being unable to get back in the boat after a capsize in winds 16-20 with pretty big chop. I had no issues righting the boat, but every time I tried to get back in, I pulled the boat over on myself.
When I tried for the transom entry, the boat would bear off and try to get away from me and make that method untenable.
Any suggestions? I’m planning to do some practice in light air, and sort out issues of life jacket riding up etc.
As Storm Hannah swept across the UK 38 RS Aeros ventured out onto Island Barn Reservoir for their Spring Championships.
Jim Champ was on hand to catch the action on camera. After a couple of successful gybes for the camera in between races it all caught up with our stuntman on his 3rd fly-by as gusts in excess of 30kn buffeted across the water.
As the mast had grounded when the boat went near turtle it was not possible to choose to right the RS Aero with the rig to leeward, so a windward righting with an Eskimo Roll was the call.
The Eskimo Roll is a technique for when you are capsized with the rig is to windward of the hull and the wind is too strong for you to be able to enter and cross the boat to the new windward side quickly enough to save the 2nd capsize. In trying to cross over the top you might be able to stay on the hull and daggerboard, but you might also turn it turtle by climbing over if you are not quick enough. (Experiment and practice that in training!)
The rig can often end up to windward during a capsize in a 'wind against tide' situation where the current takes the rig to windward and a strong breeze blows the hull to leeward.
As the rig starts to clear the water, whether you are in the water or standing on the daggerboard, hold on tightly to the front edge of the board. Holding the front edge will avoid you losing grip if the boat accelerates forward and it will also put you in the right position at the front edge of the board for the 2nd righting. If you can reach and hold the new windward gunwale in time before it starts to right then all the better, as that may then avoid the second capsize.
As the sail catches the wind on a breezy day the boat will blow upright quickly, let the daggerboard or gunwale drag you under the boat, ready to right the boat with the rig now to leeward. Maybe you can also stop the 2nd capsize.
Now right the boat normally and as quickly as possible, to avoid the boat blowing to leeward of the rig again.
The windy season is here so it is a good time to refresh on the 'how to' capsize & recovery library.
Our intrepid new RS Aero sailor in #2285 is having fun getting to grips with a breezy day at Burghfield (UK) last month. Pushing his limits up to and over the edge several times, this provides some nice examples of how RS Aeros can capsize and how to recover.
- When you move to climb back in, move swiftly with a sharp leg kick to lift your weight and help propel you in and across the boat.
- If you roll in to windward on the run and the sail is left in the air then I agree with the method used here of simply going straight for the daggerboard. Allow the boat just enough time to swivel as you right it and the boom will then blow back down on its own. This saves time and helps avoid turning turtle.
Capsize and Man-Over-Board practice is an important feature on his training plan, however, this one was an accident whilst Ken was taking in he scenery!
Nice to see him make such light work of climbing back in the side though and it makes for a good example for this capsize video collection.
Ken reports; "Bit of chilly season training out to the needles and back. So blown away by the beauty of the needles I fell out of the boat! Capsizing at sea in November added motivation to try to get back in the boat quicker!"
There is good activity in Texas and Louisiana after they had RS Aeros delivered in August.
Thanks to Dion of Canyon Lake, Texas, USA for sharing his video which demonstrates that at 230 lbs (16.4 stone - 104 kg) it is still possible to re-enter from the side with a powerful speedy pull in and a good well timed leg kick.
Anyone who can not pull in as powerfully could also bob themselves up and down, with their PFD / Buoyancy Aid helping the bobbing. Then pull in on an upwards bob which will help de-weight you (together with the leg kick). If you can't manage the side easily, just go for rear entry which is easy.
The one he failed on (at about 7mins) the boom had already crossed to his side before he pulled, so effectively he was to leeward. There was no wind to speak of but he still had the weight of the boom and sail his side too.
If there was more wind it would be easier as it would help to counter balance the pull in.
What a great way to spend a hot windless afternoon mastering that. A good workout too!
RIGHTING LINES An RS Aero rights easily as soon as any weight is applied to the daggerboard, due to the light carbon rig. Sailors with a shorter arm reach have an extra challenge in reaching up to the gunwale to complete the righting.
By climbing on the front edge of the RS Aero’s daggerboard the gunwale is closer to reach as the hull narrows towards the bow.
The control line tails under the gunwale (original configuration, before tails led over deck as standard) can be closer to reach as an alternative to the gunwale. However, the way that these are tidily held in place under the gunwale lip by bungee can make them less easy to grab hold of. Once a 1st handhold is managed the 2nd is more difficult for those with less grip strength, as the thin control line is then taut under your weight.
RS have therefore come up with the simple Righting Line arrangement, which is both easier to grab hold of, and has knots that make the necessary 2nd handhold much easier. A dedicated slightly fatter line with knots is attached amidships and held forward under the gunwale with bungee, but drooping a little for easier reach.
When you are in the water and the boat is on its side simply collect the end of the Righting Line at the bow end. Place your 1st handhold on a knot to assist your putting weight on the centreboard to pull the boat up. The addition of the knots will make the 2nd handhold much easier. This will be sufficient to pull the boat upright until you can easily reach the gunwale.
Here Cathy makes light work of the righting at her first attempt, not bad for a first take! In fairness there was no wind and the boat came up easily. These knotted lines will really earn their keep if ever there is a strong breeze blowing against the underside of the hull and rig, resisting the lighter sailors efforts.
Well done and thanks to Cathy for braving the icy waters of Chew in January to put these to the test!
The Righting Lines are available as a pack from RS and take minutes to fit.
[on a separate note Cathy makes light work of climbing back in amidships here. Remember if you are over 80-90kg, depending on the wind strength, climbing in over the windward side of the transom might be the favoured option. From what I have seen that timely kick of the legs is important.]
Hi Gareth, You did well with the 7 at the Bloody Mary. I used the 5 and still had 2 capsizes! Whilst it was extreme, mine were a little careless in that faster reactions would have saved them. You have reminded me of a new Aero experience however, which I learnt from Moths (just when I thought I had covered it all!);
Boom in the air capsize
If you capsize with the boom in the air and the sail filling my recommendation is ignore it! Go straight for the centreboard and right to the boat normally, allowing the boat time to rotate as you do it. The boat will rotate until the boom flops down by which time the rig will by nicely to leeward of the hull and already starting to right.
If you delay and try to start pulling the boom down to the water you run the danger of the boat starting to turtle as the sail is not flat on the water to slow it, which will all take longer.
The 'boom in the air capsize' is one in which in the short term the boat can drift more quickly. In reality it will always go into a rotation and the boom/sail will then flop.
A simple dry capsize here but it does demonstrate that you don't always need to be a heavy weight to right a sailing boat! At a mere 40kg there was plenty of weight to pull the boat upright from either on its side or turtle through a variety of capsizes that day. Importantly, this allowed a degree of self reliance and independence.
Our 11 year old Aeronaut had no reach issues on the Aero as the side gunwales and cockpit grab rails enabled him to easily climb aboard the turtled hull and also amidships when upright as necessary. The under gunwale control line take ups also act as capsize lines to aid those with shorter reach.
Many thanks to Peter and Alex for an excellent training day at Chelmarsh. The capsize rear entry demo was most helpful although I hope that I will not need to use it very often. Thanks also to the guys at Chelmarsh for their help unloading the boat and making me feel most welcome. Good luck to you all with your new boats
First climb onto the front of the board, this makes it easiest to reach up to the gunwale as the boat narrows towards the bow. If you don't manage to step on the board and step in as the boat comes upright, then;
Once upright if unable to climb in the side due to there being no wind to balance you or your being too heavy, then go for the stern. The honeycomb flaps provide a good handhold to initially pull up on. As you do, the stern will sink under your weight so the flaps are near the water's surface. Then continue pulling yourself in on the toe straps. A good leg kick will help. Simples!
Video of Peter Barton at Chelmarsh SC's windless Lift-Off day, Nov 2014.
This is my favourite, not just because it is me but due to that beautiful backdrop with Hurst Castle, where I was married!
Again, it is easy to get one hand to the centreboard by pushing off the gunwale with the other. Then I can step up, knee then foot. With my feet on the widest part of the boat, the gunwale, she rotates quite quickly from the turtle. I miss my chance to stand on the centreboard ready to step in as it comes up, although it looked like I had managed it with a hand on the top gunwale – must try harder! This will make a big time difference if needed in a race.
Quite pleased with the speed in which I climbed in - not bad for an old bloke. I can only just reach the toe strap from the water with my reach, but it is still easier and quicker to do an initial pull on the cockpit grab rail. The hull only heeled to windward a little and this was only a ‘7’ rig for the wind to blow against in balance.
In Tuesday’s video the boat remained well mannered on a broad course whilst the pilot re-boarded. In this clip the Aero remains reasonably well mannered on a closer course to the wind. The windward heel whilst boarding helps her not go head to wind.
Not too feisty really.
8/10 for Peter Barton here. I need to work on that ‘step up’. This will need a development from the 'Laser' technique as the RS Aero rights more quickly due to the light carbon rig.
76kg adult helm, Kent Martin, rights a dry capsize smoothly with an RS Aero 9 rig and is quick to get going again. But look at the end, that is all it took for a couple of Aeronaut5s to sneak by on the run.
For today's offering we have a more complex TURTLE example. Here our 60kg Aeronaut, Charlie, is turtle and already on the hull. Easy enough with those gunwales. The bow is almost head to wind, but not quite.
- He chose to stand on the leeward gunwale which meant bringing the rig up to windward which, in this instance, turned out to be a mistake. - However, I believe he could have saved the flip by getting a foot up on the daggerboard as the boat came nearly level. With a timely and agile dash over the gunwale and across the boat he could have saved it and had a really speedy recovery! - He is now back in the water and has to swim around. There is no risk of entanglement around the transom due to the centre mainsheet. - Pulling down on the daggerboard the first grab reaches the control lines below the gunwales and then the second reaches the gunwales. - He then goes forward on the gunwales. This does not work as it reduces his leverage as the boat narrows and he lets go. - On the 2nd attempt he makes light work of reaching the gunwales and pulling the boat flat.
- A speedy climb aboard using the cockpit grab rails (vital for those with shorter reach in a boat of this width) and then toe straps.
Even with the extra time taken he was still happily on his way again 90secs after leaning back on the gunwale. If he had managed the windward righting, a racing technique to perfect, it would have been less than 20secs.
Not bad for a first capsize attempt when he had only unwrapped his boat that morning! There are a few good learning points here and I am sure we will be scoring 8+s at big bad Hayling next month!
Video Starring Charlie Pearce on his first day's RS Aeroing!
TURN-TURTLE TUESDAY In any boat test, whether a formal review or simple demo sail, it is important (and fun!) to carry out a thorough capsize test including turning turtle. Following on from ‘Capsize Monday’ yesterday our Tuesday star, Liam, demonstrates a similar ‘Turn-Turtle’ and ‘Wet’ capsize.
This time our sailor is properly swimming alongside a fully inverted boat – no short cuts here!
- Hand on the gunwale allows the dagger board to be reached easily. - Knee and then Foot on the gunwale allows the upturned hull to be equally easily boarded. - Toes lock into that gunwale lip as gentle leaning back starts to pull the boat onto its side. - Leaning back on the tip of the board provides maximum leverage. However, as the boat rotates moving down the front edge towards the hull and onto the board, if possible, will save effort later. - Again, with the light rig the boat comes up very easily. This saves the effort of climbing fully onto the board but provides the alternative challenge of climbing into the upright hull. - With the mainsail a long way out here the hull does tip to windward – but only so far. An assertive leg kick or double leg kick helps here. - What is interesting here is that even with quite a bit of windward heel and a broad angle the boat remains well mannered, not choosing to bear away any further whilst its master boards. - 60kg Liam makes light work of climbing in. The grab rails provide easy access to the toe strap, this is critical for those with shorter reach. Keep the weight low and move inboard.
- Grab the tiller and the mainsheet and you are back in the game…
8/10 for 14 year old Liam Willis on his first sail in an RS Aero at the Yachts and Yachting Review, June 2014.
CAPSIZE MONDAY At the first ever RS Aero Class training at Queen Mary, Oct 2014, we instigated a capsize frenzy at the end of the day to make sure everyone was fully familiar with their brand new craft. The RS Aero is light, super light, and as such conventional techniques need small variations. As they would when you change between any two boats.
- From turtle, a hand push down on the gunwales enables the daggerboard to be reached. - With fingers now holding the daggerboad the knees can reach and rest on the gunwales. - Then the feet can step onto the gunwales. Useful features those gunwales! - Feet placed on the wide gunwales provides maximum leverage with which to lean back on the centreboard comfortably. - As the boat comes towards the horizontal use the gunwale lip to help step onto the top of the daggerboard for an easier recovery (Ben misses a trick here, but he knows for next time!). - Now in the water, Ben starts to pull on the dagger board. Climb on the blunt front edge, next to the hull. Due to the featherlight rig the boat is likely to come upright before you can climb on the daggerboard. - Reach for the gunwale to pull the boat level. If you can't reach the gunwale you can pull the control lines from under the gunwale instead. - As the boat comes flat you can hold the boat by the gunwale. By kicking the legs in a twisting motion around the hips you can easily hold/move the 30kg hull at the right angle across the wind, if required. - The cockpit grab rails provide an initial hand hold to pull on before then reaching the toe strap and anyone with a shorter reach than me (I am 5'10" ish tall) will struggle to reach the toe straps on a boat of this width without them. - Once you have reached the toe strap you are able to sheet in some mainsheet through your two hands, if required. This will both help to balance your weight and stop the boat bearing away. - Due to the super light hull you should keep your weight low and move swiftly to the centreline before the boat leans to windward. - Sailors over about 90kg, or those a little less agile, may find it easier to climb back in over the transom if climbing in amidships tips the lightweight hull towards them. A good breeze will make climbing in amidships easier for the heavy sailor, especially if you can sheet in the main. Simple physics really! - For transom entry the transom flap honeycombs provide a useful handhold and there are no strings crossing the back to worry about entanglement. It may be necessary to push the tiller to leeward to help keep the boat into the wind.
8/10 for Ben Poe on his first day in an RS Aero. I am confident he will score 9s next time...