Sailing the Aerius 11

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voyageur

Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by voyageur »

I am new to this site, so forgive me if I am repeating information that has already been posted. I have sailed and paddled a Klepper Aerius 11 for many years. At first I used an S4 Klepper Sail without outriggers. After flying it to the Gulf Coast a few times I decided that outriggers would extend my sailing time on the water. So I bought the Balogh Boss System. Sailing went from being occasionally terrifying to a pleasure almost all of the time. The almost has to do with the inability to drop the Klepper sail from my stern position in the kayak. Especially going in through the surf it became an obvious problem. Finally I decided to address the issue by buying a 38 sq. foot sail from Balogh. I attached a line to the top of my sail, down the mast, around a cleat, and back to a cam cleat on my sailing board.
This allows me to drop the sail from my stern position, gather the sail up and get it out of way quickly. I tried the same thing with my Klepper Rig but it always got hung up, and was always in the way. I usually sail solo so this is ideal. I have also found that the Balogh is very efficient on all points of sail. simple to rig and derig and you have but one sheet to mess with. A couple of other things: I inflate a paddle float at the peak of the mast, so if I were to tip over I would not turn turtle. Also I use storage float bags under the bow and stern for floatation or gear. I also have a small canoe whitewater center bag in the front cockpit (easily removed when going tandem) for added floatation. In the Folding Kayak Forum I read someone was saying how a Klepper Sprayskirt gets in the way of sailing hardware. My control board attaches right over the sprayskirt. I have reinforced holes in my sprayskirt where the Balogh Boss System attaches to the coaming. In no way does my sprayskirt inhibit the mounting of sailing hardware. I can't imagine where that idea came from. Just one more comment. A few years ago I tried to reverse my rudder the way Ralph Diaz suggests. The first time I tried it, when sailing parallel to the shore a moderate wave hit the rudder bending it dramatically. It took a vice to straighten it out. Seems that there is to much resistance in that position. Anyone else had that problem. Thats my two cents worth in response to all of the concerns I have seen in past discussions. Happy Sailing!!

Alm

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by Alm »

I inflate a paddle float at the peak of the mast, so if I were to tip over I would not turn turtle.
Don't know whether this is enough flotation to right the boat up (or prevent it from capsizing completely), but would like to see some photos.
I tried to reverse my rudder the way Ralph Diaz suggests. The first time I tried it, when sailing parallel to the shore a moderate wave hit the rudder bending it dramatically. It took a vice to straighten it out. Seems that there is to much resistance in that position. Anyone else had that problem
I've heard about this modification many times, it's not described in R.Diaz book, but I would imagine this is the same as one of Longahul rudder options - with blade hanging vertically (when lowered in the water), rather than horizontally. Vertical blade in water is more efficient for sailing. The drawback is that when blade is vertical in the water, it is hanging horizontally when lifted, so this is when it is most vulnerable, but on such occasions (i.e. when rudder is out of the water) there is no wind or waves (or you're approaching the shore and have just lifted it up).

No, never happened with my LH rudder when I had LH MK1 boat (vertical blade when lowered and almost horizontal above the water when lifted). Not sure how close this is to your "modified" blade position, - may be Klepper blade has a longer chord (width). The original LH angle was almost horizontal with blade lifted, and I increased it to hang at about 30 degrees when lifted http://foldingkayaks.org/gallery2/main.php?g2_itemId=61. New Klepper rudder that flips back on the deck when lifted (and hangs vertically when lowered) will probably eliminate the problem. Don't know about the blade size in this new rudder - on the photos it looks a little smaller than their old blade, and sailing requires a lot of rudder area.

Spraydeck covering the entire cockpit of boats like AEII (or Folbot GII) can be inconvenient for sailing with schooner rigs and other 2-mast rigs rigs like S4, I think. Because you have a limited freedom of movement around the boat. But with Balogh rig, especially a single-mast rig, this is less important - it is simple in operation, as you've noted.

john allsop
Brotherhood of the Golden Paddle
Posts: 1255
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2005 3:40 pm
Location: isles of scilly UK

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by john allsop »

Reversing the klepper rudder (hanging it vertical), this is in Ralph Diaz book second edition, pages 194/195. I have done this on both my kleppers and i have added a small weight rivetted on near the new bottom of the blade to help lowering .

Alm

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by Alm »

Thanks, John! I see it now. Same layout as it was in my LH rudder. Yes, side wave hitting close to the vertical axis of the blade when the boat is not loaded or stern is lifted up momentarily on the previous wave, can cause the damage described above. To avoid this, either different shape of the "neck" of the blade is needed (may be like in a new Klepper rudder, where neck is essentially same wide as the rest of the blade), or a thicker blade (then it should have a hydrofoil cross-section, and some people made it, - usually of wood). The only kayak company making hydrofoil rudder blade is Feathercraft, but their largest blade is barely enough for sail area larger than 36-40 sf.

voyageur

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by voyageur »

Hi Alm: Thanks for the information on avoiding rudder damage in waves (where we all like to sail). I think I will make my own more efficient rudder or order the new Klepper Rudder. Hopefully this will not be prone to bending.

john allsop
Brotherhood of the Golden Paddle
Posts: 1255
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2005 3:40 pm
Location: isles of scilly UK

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by john allsop »

You could turn the rudder "vertical" to try it , the cost is almost nothing and it is easy to turn back to it,s original position if you use a stainless steel bolt with a lock nut that has a nylon insert. I only bent my rudder in the early days going down stream in a fast river, i went onto a "shallow" and the force of the water bent the rudder as i was aground with the water rushing past. After that i only used the rudder in deep water, at that time people hadn,t come up with the rudder lifter. I am not on the sea but on the great lakes. I don,t seem to be able to post photo,s although i suppose it,s simple. If you want to look at my vertical rudder i have photos (over 100) on http://www.playak.net look for my page, easy to find. IF you try the Klepper rudder "vertical" i think you will need the weight on the bottom. Some people say it is ok without a weight. I have added two more photos, you would have to click on each photo (i think), also i have do it youself lee boards, yukon spray cover and other items there.

Kapitän von Klepper

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by Kapitän von Klepper »

John, this is an interesting approach to the old problem of the rudder rake changing (only on modified Klepper blades) according to the force of water on the blade. Do you know how stable the rake is with your weights?

I've opted to use bungee cord. I have some fender washers on the pivot screw and locknut with nylon spacers between the washers and the rudder. This creates a pulley that helps the bungee add more tension the higher the rudder is lifted, thus controlling the rake. If I ever get my rig fine tuned enough, I may start opting for different rake positions, controlled by the lift line against the bungee. The theory is the slower the boat is travelling the more lively the feel on the tiller should be. By lifting the rudder slightly at slower speeds, the tiller should feel more lively. The lift line would be controlled by a cam or jam cleat, marked (like one does with the jib sheets) so to have an idea how much rake is on the rudder.

Alm

Re: Sailing the Aerius 11

Post by Alm »

To control the blade rake of the old-style modified vertical Klepper rudder, there is no need in a pulley or anything pulley-like, when the blade is equipped with a downhaul bungee cord. Cleated lifting cord keeps it from dropping down below the chosen point of rake, and downhaul bungee cord ensures blade return to the lowered position (chosen as maximum low or intermediate low, depending on water depth) after it's been lifted up momentarily due to water turbulence or bottom rocks. The bungee cord should be long, going through perimeter loops all the way to the cockpit, ending with a barrel lock at the cockpit end (longer length ensures wide range of tension adjustment, and barrel lock is fixing the chosen tension). At the rudder end the bungee connects to the blade via metal clip and short nylon cord with loop - so that the short cord and blade could be disconnected from the bungee for boat dissembling.

Here is a photo sent to me by Mark Balogh, with FC rudder (custom-made blade for sailing, the factory doesn't cut them like this), showing short red nylon cord and longer black bungee cord. This should not be different with Klepper modified old blade (or Klepper new blade that is using an uphaul/downhaul pulley). You can also see the "eye" bolted into the rudder bracket, to keep the short downhaul nylon cord close to the keelsen axis, to prevent the bungee tensioning when the blade is deflected to the other side (away from the bungee side). I used a stainless D-ring on the lower lip of the Longhaul rudder bracket for this purpose.
Image

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