EC12 with the CMYC
The EC12 Yacht or the ” Rolls Royce ” as some of our members like to call them, is a another part of our clubs history.
The EC12 class vs J Class Bragging match is one of the yearly events that is Sailed with honour and passion.This event follows strict Match racing rules, the number one rule is you must always give way to the Commodore!
May 23 2013
The EC12 class was introduced to NZ by myself when I returned from the 1983 Australian National EC12 class Championship with a boat designated as KZ1.
That boat had been constructed by Kevin Humphreys of Lakesedge engineering in Sydney then fitted out and tuned by Max Lewis (Sydney) and Ric Dorey (Adelaide) I stepped off the aeroplane in Adelaide and was handed the controls of a fully sorted competitive boat. I will be forever grateful to all those concerned in that exercise.
Around the same time Paul Chisholm in Christchurch had a similar interest in the class and imported a boat from Queensland from Brian Delisser. I returned to Sydney the following year for the 1984 nationals and in fact sailed every year in various classes up until 1990 I think. That included the EC12 World Championship held in Surfers Paradise in 1986.
The EC12 class generated some interest in New Zealand as we suffer the same problem as others worldwide which is weed growth in fresh water ponds. As Max Lewis said and I have quoted many times the EC12 will “just about sail on wet grass” with only an eight inch draft.
To build the class in this country we needed more hulls as sailors were keen to join the class. I looked around for a suitable builder and was given the name of a fellow who was supposedly the gun rowing skiff maker. I commissioned him to take a mould off my Lakesedge boat and produce ten hulls with decks fitted.
What a disaster that exercise was. The hulls were built too heavy and as any fibreglass manufacturer will tell you every little flaw in the original hull used as a plug is exaggerated with each flop or copy made. My Lakesedge hull had some idiosyncrasies which I will not expand on but simply say that they were even more evident in the finished hulls.
They sailed well enough when completed and the price I charged made for some happy new skippers. At the same time in Christchurch Paul Chisholm began producing hulls from a mould he had taken from his Delisser hull. Paul under the “Tainui” brand produced some excellent boats and the class flourished in Christchurch. The popularity of anything can be a two edged sword and so it was with EC12`s. A group of modellers in Nelson decided that paying $100 for a regulation hull was far too much and they could build a mould and produce them for around $25 just the cost of the materials involved.
They made a mould using a second hand boat from an unknown origin and produced some hulls which were finished by some of the local sailors. This was of some concern to the elected governors of the class as it was evident that the hull shapes that we had in NZ were becoming diluted by fourth fifth and even sixth generation copies with all the faults becoming compounded with each generation.
I had been in talks with people in Australia regarding the importation of a definitive plug from the USA for use in both countries to try and standardise the hull shapes as I felt things were getting out of hand with the copies. After making contact with Rod Carr who was able to source a plug which I understand was from the “Flame” series and as close as possible to the original shape this was purchased sent to Australia and put in the care of ??? Ferguson.
Unfortunately things became a little confused and complicated at this point which I am not prepared to expand on and a period of years passed before the plug arrived in New Zealand to become the shape used by Davie Norris as the only licensed builder for NZL at that time. All NZL boats within the registered numbers 51 – 127 ? are constructed from that plug.
Around 1995 the Americans moved to standardize the class by commissioning the manufacture of a plug to be used by all those hull manufacturers who wished to remain as licensed builders in USA. I understand this move was a result of a similar feeling that the proliferation of so many different shapes all professing to be authentic EC12 class hulls was confusing to potential owners and needed clarification.
The NZEC12OA realised that this was the chance to come into line with the USA and requested their own unit in the series that was produced for all builders who wanted to be part of the class standardization process. This is now the NZEC12OA official mould and is available to any builder who wishes to become licensed by the owners association upon signing the binding contract which ensures construction to certain standards. All NZL hulls from 128? onwards are to this approved shape. ( the exact number is open to correction by registrar.)
What is the difference amongst the various shapes? Well in my opinion as I have stated so many times ” they all go the same speed. ” However there are subtle differences which are to do with the “manners” of the various shapes. As we all know an EC12 is a prick of a boat to sail. The harder it blows the worse it goes.
The early boats were of what is termed the “pinched bow” shape. It seems that Buddy Black or perhaps someone else thought that the forward sections would work better if narrowed a little bit. The hull was pinched in most probably by hand and unfortunately not symmetrical. This seems to result in a hull that rounds up excessively in a gust which we have all experienced.
The latest shape is a much better behaved boat IMHO. Being sweeter for me means that I can concentrate more on being in the right place at maximum speed and worry less about keeping the boat on the correct heading. It is no faster just more forgiving downwind especially.
All opinions expressed are my own and should not be taken as representing any official organization
By Ian Hull-Brown
May 23 2013
I would only add that it was my impression from talking to Buddy Black that the original “FLAME” hull form was modified by pinching the bow mostly as a result of seeing the new shapes that were appearing with the full sized IOR rule boats. This rule provided for specific measurement stations along the hull and the result was often a hull form that had almost a straight sheer from the bow aft to where a mid-body measurement station would have been. Having sailed both the original hull form and the pinched, I would still opt for the former, as it was fuller in the bow, and seemed to resist nose diving a bit better when going to weather and being pressed hard in fresh conditions.
I have no recollection of a performance rationale for slimming the forward deck beam dimensions other than the “esthetic” one described above.
Congratulations to Ian Hull-Brown for adding this chapter to the somewhat checkered, but totally interesting history of the EC-12. Very nice to learn some of the details, the persons involved and the time line of the development of the boat as it spread across the globe. Having been the first US EC-12 Class Secretary and holding two other stints in that position over time, I’ve never lost my love for the boat, and the joy it brings when seen on the water in its element.
12 US 2
The New Zealand EC-12 Owners Association sails the East Coast 12-Meter yacht. Graceful overhangs with a sweeping sheer hark back to the golden age of yachting. The EC-12 is about 1.5 metres (5 feet) long, displaces approx 11 kilograms (23 pounds), has a 1.8 metre (6 foot) mast, and carries 7,500 square centimetres (1,300 square inches) of sail. The heavy-displacement full-keel hull of the EC-12 differs from most other model yacht classes, which tend towards lighter hulls with exaggerated fin keels and bulbs for ballast. In the 1960’s, the famed naval architect Charlie Morgan, designed a 12-meter yacht as a potential defender in the 1964 America’s Cup. The full sized boat was never built, but the 9/10 inch to 1-foot scale tank test model survived and was used to make the EC-12.
The EC-12 is a restricted one-design class. Fiberglass hulls are made from an international mould, and must be purchased from the Owners Association. Construction materials and dimensions are also restricted, sail dimensions are controlled, and radio functions are limited to three – rudder, main sheet, and jib twitcher. All other rig tuning controls – boom vang, cunningham, outhauls, stay tension, topping lift, etc. replicate those on full size boats, but must be manually set rather than radio controlled. The result is a class of boats with similar speed potential. As with any good restricted design class, racing success is determined by boat handling abilities.
From the ec12 nz web site
An article by Rod Carr.
The original design which became the East Coast 12 Meter was a Charles Morgan design #2770. Nicknamed Eagle, the design was prepared circa 1962-63 and made into a 9/10″ = 1′ scale model for aerodynamic testing. The design was never considered for full size construction as a potential defender of the 1964 America’s Cup, but was use to study ways of reducing the troublesome quarter wave produced from older designs. As originally conceived, the hull form was similar to Constellation and showed a reasonably full fore body, with only limited reduction in the forefoot. A “spoon” bow is shown in the original drawings, but the snub nose was extended out to form the somewhat more graceful shape we recognize today, probably by Buddy Black, who used the aerodynamic model as a plug for making the first fiberglass molds.
Of the hulls which came from that first mold, hull number 25, later called Flame, was eventually used to produce secondary molds. Production of hulls for R/C racing started in Florida and are reported in publications as early as 1968. In the late 60’s, John Reynolds of Orlando, Florida began production of hulls in concert with Buddy Black. One set of molds migrated to the Washington, D.C. area in 1970, just as the American Model Yacht Association (AMYA) was forming. A few hulls were produced by Charles Black, brother of Buddy, and then the mold was consigned to Rod Carr of Chevy Chase, Maryland who began production of bare hulls doing business as Carr’s Boatyard. Early efforts in organization of the class for racing accepted a number of models all of approximately the same size. Such hulls as the Hartman Olympia and Jacobson’s Regatta One-Design were gathered under an umbrella and named the East Coast 12 Meter (EC-12M). The name was chosen to differentiate the approximately 5′ long group of yachts from another 12 meter being produced in Newport, California and called West Coast 12 Meter at the time. The 6′ long larger California boat was subsequently renamed the Newport 12 and has raced in California as a one-design since that time.
The first EC-12M Class Secretary, Rod Carr, designated Memphis, Tennessee as the site of the first annual Class Championship Regatta to be held in the summer of 1971. The group that assembled was quite a sight. It included models from the Morgan design from Florida, California, and Virginia; Hartman Olympia from Illinois; and a scratch built 12-meter variant from Maryland. When the event was over it had been won by a Morgan hull, but the scratch built one was in second place. The result was a quick coalescing of the membership and the development of a one-design rule which accepted only the Morgan plug related hulls. The manufacturer of the Olympia was assigned status of an authorized manufacturer, and to this day, the hull manufactured by Hartman Fiberglass R/C is physically closer to the original Morgan plug than that of any current manufacturer. The hull retains the fuller bow sections which were part of the original #2770 design. Over the life of the class, additional manufacturers were authorized by the AMYA Class Secretary, and they came and went as such garage operations are likely to do. The notable exceptions have been Hartman Fiberglass R/C, active since 1971, and Dumas Products, a first line model products company who has been a consistent producer and advertiser for many years.
Buddy Black: 1968-1970 Bill Low: 1987-1991
Reynolds Manufacturing: 1968-1983 Puritan Yachts: 1992-1996
Carr’s Boatyard: 1970-1973 Graves Little Boatyard: 1998- 2000
Model Yachts and Things: 1970-1978 Robin Yachts: 1980-1983, 1999-Present
Hartman Fiberglass R/C: 1971-Present Ozmun Design: 1986-2000
Leisure Products: 1972-1974 Sailcraft: 1988-1995
Treasure Tooling: 1975-1978 George Ribeiro Products: 1998- 2000
Cork Sails: 1976-1980 Brawner Boats: 1999-2005
Dumas Products: 1976-2004 RMD Marine: 2005-Present
Hickman Marine: 1977-2005 Ludwig Enterprises: 2005-2009
Crump and Associates: 1977-1983 Blue Crab Yachts: 2006-Present
Bob’s Boatyard: 1979-1981 CPM: 2010-Present
William Schell: 1983-1988
Through the 1970’s the class rules were stable with one notable exception. As originally promulgated, the beam of the hull was stated as a maximum measurement, but the location of the measuring point was not specified. Experiments with different bow configurations were held in Florida resulting in a narrowing of the deck beam dimension in the forward part of the hull. The experiments resulted in the gradual movement of the point of maximum beam aft. About 1973, rule clarifications were accepted that provided for maximum deck beam measurements and tolerances at specific measurement stations. The measurements and tolerances were selected to match the typical hulls being produced at the time, and established the primary control on hull shape as the Treasure Tooling Plug. The Treasure Tooling is the point of departure for about half of the manufacturers today. Thus, some present EC-12M’s appear to vary in the deck shape significantly from the original plug. Careful measurements were taken of the variations caused near the water line by this topside pinching. The AMYA EC-12M Technical Committee could find no evidence the hull was distorted at the waterline. It was concluded that the basic underbody remained virtually unchanged. Simply put, the influence of the skipper on the performance of the boat is so huge by comparison to slight variations in hull shape or sail plan configurations, that no one has been able to prove the pinched hulls were faster or slower than the traditional shape. People often thought the early pinched hulls were faster, but that was later ascribed to the fact that the better skippers were more likely to get new boats and hence the skipper was the apparent cause of the performance increase. As of this writing, the issue is of historical interest only.
In 1979, the International Yacht Racing Union – Model Yacht Racing Division (IYRU-MYRD) accepted the EC-12M as the first international one-design class for model yacht racing. In 1986 the IYRU-MYRD requested that rules for all international classes be rewritten in a consistent format, and an EC-12M subcommittee was formed from five countries known to sail the boat (USA, GB, KA, KZ, and KC). A new more restrictive class rule was written for the “International” East Coast 12 Meter, as well as a constitution and by-laws. However, the AMYA membership did not ratify the ICE-12M proposal and compromise efforts also failed. The IYRU-MYRD then adopted the new ICE-12M as a new class in 1990, which lifted sanctioning of the AMYA EC-12M class. Additional efforts to a compromise by a technical committee within the IEC-12M also failed. In 1992 the IYRU-MYRD placed the IEC-12M class on a two-year probation with intention to remove sanctioning unless the issues are resolved.
In the US, we have locally and nationally continued to race under the AMYA class rule through it all.
The effort for an IEC-12M class included the creation of a new primary hull plug with the intention future hulls be built to a tighter tolerance. Existing hulls were to be grandfathered into the new class. In 1989 the IEC-12M technical committee selected the Hartman Fiberglass R/C plug as the basis of the new primary hull plug. This being considered by the IEC-12M technical committee as the nearest existing hull to the original design the class is founded upon. This eventually became the plug the Puritan Yachts mold came from. The name “Puritan” both suggests the strong resemblance to the original design and refers to the Edward Burgess designed Puritan, the 1885 America’s Cup defender. The IEC-12M plug is now in Australia.
Tom Jordan somehow agreed to create this new IEC-12M plug. In researching the plug, Tom reviewed the lines of Constellation, the Olin Stephen’s 1964 America’s Cup defender. Among many characteristics shared by both hulls was the sharp angles or facets extending longitudinally around the keel bottom. However, these were eased somewhat in the final Jordan plug to conform more with existing EC-12M’s. When efforts for an international organization stalled, Tom, as Puritan Yachts, submitted his hull to the AMYA and received approval after close scrutiny in 1992. Prior to approval, the gunwale had to be lowered 1/4″ at station 20, but otherwise it is a middle-of-the-road yacht relative to AMYA-approved yachts. The newest AMYA-approved hull manufacturer, Puritan Yachts, was actually a chance result of efforts to make the EC-12M an international class. Unfortunately, after only producing nearly thirty hulls, Tom Jordan and Puritan Yachts ceased production. Tom has taken a breather from model yachts, and is pursuing other interests. I hope my friend takes only a temporary break from model yachts.
One result of the IEC-12M efforts was a tightening of the AMYA sail tolerances in 1992. This was one area where consensus was reached between the two groups. Because the racing is closer, there is general satisfaction with the standard or “A”-rig rule that eliminated significant roach area in the main. In 1993 the AMYA revised the requirements for the “B” and “C”-rigs closer to the IEC-12M. Another by product of the IEC-12M influence is the 1995 AMYA rule revision to a standard plug for all new hulls, that brings the class closer to a true one-design. The 1995 new standard class plug is based upon the middle-of-the-road Puritan.
The conversion to the 1995 new standard class plug and the compliance with the existing EC12 Class Rule has been well accepted and new hull suppliers now meet the needs of all skippers, worldwide. Since 2000, the class has seen greater growth as hulls, materials and building help has become readily available. The near future looks bright for EC12.