Topic : Numbers on spinnakers

Have been looking at the photographs on the Y & Y website and cant tell who'se who. Bring back the numbers on the spinnakers!!!!!In a few years when memories fade, the identities of the boats will be unknown.

Posted: 19/08/2007 18:12:01
By: Barry
If a photo is so un-distinctive (is that a word?) that you need spinnaker numbers to identify the boat, is it a good photo? Will you want to look at it in a few years time?

I like my cheap secondhand spinnaker thanks...without a black scribbly mess all over it!

Posted: 19/08/2007 21:16:26
By: Mags
Sorry Mags but I like the black numbers on on my old rules kites, each to there own of course, but I am firmly in the camp of carrying sail numbers on spinakers. I was sent a wonderful picture by the former owner of my boat and loads of others flying spinakers with numbers in the late 70's and it does make identifying the boats easier.

Posted: 19/08/2007 22:22:14
By: Wooden Boar Sailor
If you feel that strongly about it find a seconder, attend the AGM and propose it. I can guarantee it won't be passed, the membership have twice conclusively voted in favour of not having spinnaker numbers.

Of course if you want to stick numbers onto your spinnakers there is no rule that says you can't, it's just not a requirement that they are there.

Posted: 20/08/2007 08:15:56
By: Chris M
sure the class will not object to people voluntarily displaying numbers on their spinacker - it just isn't compulsary. you like them  - get your black marker pen out..

Posted: 20/08/2007 09:19:13
By: number cruncher
Is there any other class, dinghy or keelboat, that does not insist on numbers on spinnakers? I would hate to be a race official trying to finish you all downwind.

Posted: 20/08/2007 18:43:00
By: Barry
This point about finishing downwind was raised before, but concerns were allayed by a few PROs I believe.

Posted: 20/08/2007 19:10:51
By: Mags
All the assymetric classes are numberless. It's not often that large numbers of Merlins are finished downwind and the main is usually clearly visible. 

This has been brought up twice at the agm, and the majority of those who attended the meetings did not want numbers on kites. If you want your number on your spinnaker i'm sure your sailmaker will oblige.

Posted: 20/08/2007 19:13:14
By: Chris M
What we need is to allow sponsorship.
Then you could tell who is who by the logos.
Nearly all classes that aren’t stuck in the past don’t have numbers on spinnakers and do allow at least limited advertising on sails, and the sponsor would pay for the spinnaker!

Come on Barry don't be an old fogey. I do agree about the old photographs but things are moving on - lets move with them.

Posted: 20/08/2007 19:58:01
By: Pat Blake
Larks changed the rules to not require numbers on spinnys a while back. Nioe.

Posted: 20/08/2007 20:05:16
By: not that barry
I reckon Jude had the right idea with her Artemis kite!

Posted: 20/08/2007 21:13:17
By: Jon
Choose your spinnaker (and hull) colours carefully, and you'll always be recognised.

Posted: 20/08/2007 21:45:46
By: Mike Anslow
Ah but have the membership voted on it twice? 
Those who attended the AGM might have, but then that's not the complete membership is it?
There are lots of association members who do not attend AGM's.
Wasn't htis years AGM a non event due to insufficent people being attending?

Posted: 20/08/2007 22:30:36
By: Wooden Boat Sailor
And yet you happily put numbers on jibs for Salcombe!
Which looks hideous.
To me, an old fart I'll admit, numbers on spinnakers look right.(TO ME,)However if the AGM Voting Majority do not want then then.... If it's a number change issue it can be done or a exception made by the committee in extremis. BY all means have spinnaker art it can look good, but sponsorship of individual boats or a whole fleet? I think not. Leave that to the arrivists the Merlin Rocket Class is better than that. Thank Goodness your climker hulls contra-indicate big stickers!

Posted: 20/08/2007 22:57:15
By: Ancient Geek
I dont think wanting clear identification on spinnakers is being an old fogey. I dont mind keeping up with the times as long as the trend make sense. No numbers on asymetric spinnakers is nonsense as well. It does make it easier for sponsors like VW Tourag to give spinnakers away without to much hassle, but I would rather know who is who. Watching SB3,s going downwind is like watching a shoal of mackerel, beautiful but they all look the same.

Posted: 20/08/2007 23:00:12
By: Barry
I never thought I'd say this but I absolutely agree with Barry!

Though since I don't own a Merlin Rocket any more and haven't for half a lifetime I guess its up to those who do.

Posted: 21/08/2007 10:19:38
By: Ancient Geek
AG. Great to have you onside. Numbers on all spinnakers makes sense. They only need to be on the front side. I have bought secondhand spinnies for my Etchells and the change of numbers was very simple and cheap.

Posted: 21/08/2007 10:56:18
By: Barry
Lets really get with the times and have an online AGM - Those in favour of numbers on Spinnakers say Aye

Aye... (that's 4 inc ITK, AG, Barry and Alan Warren)

Posted: 21/08/2007 11:04:55

Personally I think that is a brilliant idea. I suspect actually it is no doubt common place in the modern world of internet/email etc.


There must be a way to provide some sort of online AGM voting system that could be set up which complies with all the technicalities of an AGM ? However I suspect we would have to have a vote at an conventional AGM to vote for an online AGM but then no one would turn up so it wouldn't be agreed at the AGM and we would be back to sqaure one! LOL

New Topic to be started me thinks.


Posted: 21/08/2007 11:49:38
By: Richard Battey
I must admit that I prefer spinnakers with no numbers since on the occasions that I've been a Race Officer, the numbers on spinnakers are hard to read in sunlight anyway. However, as a spectator at Salcombe in recent years, I was struck by the large number of white spinnakers that there were in the fleet. 
Is this because the cloth is considered to be better, or provides less glare for helms and crews or is a cunning ploy by the sail makers to get rid of lots of surplus white cloth?
Please give us more multi coloured spinnakers, it makes a much more pleasant sight for the spectators. Back in the 70s, it was Spud with his white spinnaker and red band,David Spiers with his purple kite, Pat (I think) favoured yellow and with this colour coordination everyone knew who was in the lead or well placed.

Posted: 21/08/2007 12:06:04
By: Oldie
We all have to keep up with the fashion sweetie and purple, yellow and red were so last year darling, after all white is so 2007!:-)

Posted: 21/08/2007 12:38:25
By: Richard Battey
in the larks we lost spinnie numbers after a race officer at royal torbay went mental at the number of people in the fleet displaying the wrong numbers. there is a large amount of selling spinackers and other sails in the larks with approx 15-20 gettting new sets every year and the rest buying secondhand. i posted the above "number cruncher" post to say that the class has not banned numbers. if you would like them then ask the sailmaker to put them on. i think the sponsorship is also an issue but a lesser one. various larks have sponsors and some use the spinnie. harken, seasure, gul and craftinsure have all featured as sponsors with harken and some others using spinnies.

Posted: 21/08/2007 12:39:04
By: mark the lark
The whole point of an AGM is that there is always the possibility of reasoned argument turning someone's opinion and the proposer being allowed the right of reply in such a debate to defend his point (of course his opinion can be changed too).  Online, the thread can fall out of sync if you see what I mean and the cut and thrust of argument can be lost.  The discussion forum would also need to be regulated so that those who were not members of the MROA would not be able to have input as they would be excluded from the AGM in any case.  I think that if we excluded people on that basis we would lose a deal of the fun and info displayed on this site which is one of the best around.  If it isn't broke don't fix it!!

Posted: 21/08/2007 12:43:00
By: Garry R
Just for the record I had Purple Spinnakers 1967 onwards though to 1970.

Posted: 21/08/2007 13:22:52
By: Ancient Geek
The City States of Ancient Greece fell when the forum (To mix early civilisations.) got too big to control and analyse I think these electronic forum present an excellent way of taking opinion, maybe even creating "Focus Groups" indeed the concept of a electric AGM has its appeal, but a real test of who cares is who turns up at a real event. However if you "FIX" an AGM in advance then it's appeal as a debating chamber goes, as you can see from the pathetiic turn outs in The House of Commons since Tony Blair fixed everything. Perhaps frequent owners meetings at the bigger meeting might help those eho serve to do so in an even more informed way not neccesarily following personal predudices. Though I would admit the "Will of the people" or "The wisdom of crowds" in not necessarily the most reliable tribunal.

Posted: 21/08/2007 13:29:28
By: Ancient Geek
Deepest apologies
At my age, I can't be expected to remember everything!On Flower Child, Mike Webster sailed it with a yellow spinnaker and I can't remember you having that on your boat so didn't mention it!

Posted: 21/08/2007 14:23:38
By: Oldie
Also Beat Nik in her last season, there is a picture of Beat Nik and Restelss B running side by side with a Orange (Restless B) and Purple (Beat Nik) Spinnakers all very summer of love and psychodelic (Inspired the name Flower Child) in her last summer 1969 before I sold her Flower Child had numerous spinnakers all except two were in .5 oz against .75 oz cloth hence the yellow cos it was only availble (cloth) in Bluey White or yellow.
Waiter another Laphroig please.

Posted: 21/08/2007 14:48:25
By: Ancient Geek
An organised fleet should be able to police the correct numbers on spinnakers. You ask permission to sail with a different number on your spinnaker. Larks are sailed mainly by anarchists.

Posted: 21/08/2007 15:11:02
By: Barry
From memory sail numbers were often inked on to keep the weight down. This doesn't make it very easy to change when buying second hand sails. Agree with Mark there is no rule to stop you using them if you want to (though might make your kites harder to pass on!)

Posted: 21/08/2007 16:47:41
By: Captain Ross
The discussion I remember having about spinny numbers at 2 AGM's (Looe and Whitstable if memory serves) was high quality and included opinions from several experienced PRO's.  I think we are having another deja vu discussion on the forum and this will never be a runner.  However there is, as pointed out earlier in the thread, no reason why those people that want their sail number on the spinny can't put it on.  I do agree about the universal white or blue spinnakers however, please can we have some variety!  Though this year's models do seem an improvement.

Posted: 21/08/2007 23:10:41
By: Andrew M
It's clear that no matter what superanuated Merlin Rocket Sailors like myself and Barry say our artistic appreciation is not in tune with those who race the boasts. I have to say I thought it was a basicracing rule not a class rule that numbers had to be on spinnakers probably because I race  a class with numbers on spinnakers! Only on the front side yes in most cases stenciled on though whilst I have not done this myself but others have to my pre-used kites and managed well the ink seems to come off with solvent essily enough though.
WE boyj share a view that numbers somehow cimplete a picture and a few variations in base colour stripes etc and the odd picture applicable to th boat buying enough solvent to wash it off(Acitone based.) is difficult exciting as it does the interest of the anti terrorist boys. If all else fails you can cross out tht old and ink in the new. I would just point out that the class accepys Jib Number for its numerically biggest regatta which would seem to me to be a weakening of the windmills! Why for instance does the MR Class still fly racing flags instead of windex? Not eveything seems modern.

Posted: 21/08/2007 23:40:44
By: Ancient Geek
"for instance does the MR Class still fly racing flags instead of windex?"

well, I use one 'cos the burgee halliard is my "mast bend indicator".

Posted: 22/08/2007 08:14:22
By: Colin
Having no numbers on spinnakers is a retrograde , backward step. Look at the old Beken photos, not a number in sight. ISAF have it right. Get those numbers on those sails.

Posted: 22/08/2007 09:12:53
By: Barry
Having spent hours removing the glue from old numbers on a second hand Merlin spinny then just simply pulled a thread and removed a sewn on number from a Lark kite I say why mess about with sticky stuff or marker pens - a bit of black spinnaker nylon and sewing thread is best!! A dose of silicon spray soon seals any stitch holes and waterproofs the kite.

Kites should be colourful and distinctive - makes watching much easier.
I've planned a new kite for Love Over Gold - bright golden yellow with a big red heart for the retrieval patch.

Posted: 22/08/2007 13:49:00
By: Pat2121
Goodness me, AG and BD agree on spinnaker numbers, but has AG forgiven BD for the fish on his exhaust manifold?

Posted: 22/08/2007 14:53:47
By: Mmm
It wasnt Barry, he only found the fish. It was Ned who slipped it on the exhaust!!!!

Posted: 22/08/2007 14:59:42
By: Afraid, very afraid
We've all passed a lot of water since then.

Posted: 22/08/2007 18:42:36
By: Ancient Geek
I should perhaps add that my recollection is that Ned caught the bloody thing from his little fishing dinghy, who put it there was conjecture but the "honours List" was long. As I said we've passed a lot of water since then, I even wrote the story up for Mags! A rather more serious thing was the tampering with the suspension arms and brakes of the car, that too was long ago.

Posted: 22/08/2007 21:09:08
By: Ancient Geek
I can assure AG that he should look to his car maintenance rather than accuse someone of tampering with his jalopy. I can assure him that it wasnt me. Keep passing the water!!!

Posted: 23/08/2007 08:45:37
By: Barry
I should make it clear I am not suggesting Barry dun it! Pax vobicus Barry.

Posted: 23/08/2007 10:21:07
By: Ancient Geek
I think it's time for an 'Old timers' forum to be setup on this site Mags, no offense ;-) You guys post more than the yoof of today! Surprised you haven't all joined Facebook yet, or have they....

Keep the stories coming, seems the present yoof fleet have some catching up on the pranks level!

Posted: 23/08/2007 12:32:09
By: Captain Ross
Hopefully, the yoof are out there earning our pensions not surfing the internet needlessly..

Posted: 23/08/2007 15:13:42
By: Barry
Dear Captain Ross,
You Yoof are gifted amateurs- ever asked Patrick about David Spiers and the toilet paper or Mike Webster and the soda syphon at the Bear and Key in Whitstable?

Posted: 23/08/2007 16:42:55
By: Oldie
Even before my time was The Storming of the Imperial Hotel in Torquay.
One of the Silver Surfers might be able to tell the tale.

Posted: 23/08/2007 19:43:04
By: Ancient Geek


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