lundi 6 avril 2015

2017 - America's Cup - 2017 - AC48

Where is the America's Cup?




It's taken less than two years fo go from the fantastic AC72 to the ghost of an AC62 to an AC48 - the smallest boat conceived to sail in an America's Cup in the 165 year-history of the event. The AC48 will clearly be cheaper in every way, but is it the America's Cup?

One might well doubt it in view of AC48 Rule version 1.0 March 31st - this is a one-design rule, and one that the Defender - Oracle Racing - has been thinking about for some time.



The drawing of the AC48 show that it won't even be as big visually as the AC45 (and the proportional drawing show even more that the AC48 looks like a 'special' brother to the AC45.




What we have is a boat whose wing, sails, hulls, platform/crossbeams are standardized! Same engine, same body, all engineered by Oracle's designer.

To reassure the world that the America's Cup still means something, the Rule throws engineers and computer scientists a bone; they have a small amount of freedom to design the daggerboard/lifting foils, the rudders, non-structural aero fairings, and some parts of the wing and board control system.

In other words, history showed us what the America's Cup is, and we all know of the Little America's Cup, so then this new AC-1D-48 should probably be called the Medium America's Cup. Looking at the design drawings, you will see that the new boat is no longer visually special, and will probably be overlooked amongst the already large and growing number of multihull racing events. Only the name of the trophy will maintain whatever legend remains. Hence the Medium Cup!


Little is Bigger

As a result of AC organizers' wholesale changes, the Little America's Cup (now called the Little Cup thanks to trademark claims by the AC organizers) raced with C-Class cats becomes the sole remaining event in which the inventiveness of yacht designers is still free. The sole constraints in the C-Class: Length, width and sail area.

Let us say straight away: Vive the Little Cup!

François Chevalier & Jacques Taglang
Thank you to Alan Bloch for the translation

2017 - America's Cup - 2017 AC48

America’s Cup 2017… 

Vous avez dit America’s Cup ?

L'AC48


Decrescendo...
C’est acté : depuis le 31 mars 2015, la nouvelle jauge de l’America’s Cup est adoptée, approuvée à la majorité (et non à l’unanimité) des challengers membres de la commission de la Cup.

En moins de deux ans, nous sommes passés du fantastique AC72 – le catamaran volant pourtant décrié à tort par les traditionalistes – à un fantomatique AC62… pour enfin aboutir à un AC48. 14,65 mètres de long ! On a jamais imaginé si petit dans cette fabuleuse histoire depuis 1851... Il sera certes plus économique à construire, plus facile à expédier, et aura moins d’équipiers. Dans le contexte d’une épreuve aussi mythique, « small » est-il vraiment « beautiful » ? À voir !

Le quasi-monotype AC48 sous les couleurs d'Oracle, le concepteur : tout est dit ! 

Au-delà de la réaction typique du « râleur » de base, il faut se souvenir que la Cup a été pour les architectes et concepteurs, depuis l’origine, une formidable machine à rêver, à innover, à créer.

Sera-ce encore le cas avec la nouvelle jauge ? On peut en douter, car à la lecture de la première version 1.0 du 31 mars 2015,  il apparaît que l’on est davantage dans le cadre d’une monotypie souhaitée depuis longtemps par le Defender Oracle. Les bateaux qui vont désormais s’affronter seront quasi identiques, à quelques détails près. Sous réserve d’inventaire, voyons ce qu’il est en, pour le moment :

-      -  l’aile et les voiles d’avant
-      - les coques
-       - et les bras de liaison ainsi que la plate-forme

devront être standardisés… Même moteur, même carrosserie conçus par l’architecte d’Oracle !

Pour se rassurer d’avoir été si audacieux, les rédacteurs de la jauge laissent encore aux techniciens et informaticiens, quelques os à ronger. Ceux-ci pourront ainsi divaguer sur :

-       - les dérives
-       - les safrans
-       - les systèmes permettant de contrôler l’aile, les dérives, les safrans et les détails des carénages aérodynamiques…

Medium Cup ?

Reste que l’épreuve reine de la voile sera noyée dans la masse des circuits de multicoques. Seul le pichet remis au vainqueur entretiendra la légende… Une Medium Cup, donc.

Cette image parle d'elle-même : les trois bateaux ont été proportionnellement réduits ou agrandis à la même taille que l'AC48. Flagrante révélation : la surface vélique de l'AC48 est la plus petite ! Vous avez dit 'Medium Cup' ?...

Vive la Petite Coupe !!!

Du coup, l’ex-Little America’s Cup (ex-petite Coupe de l’America) désormais appelée Little Cup (Petite Coupe), disputée en C-Class (Classe C) devient l’unique compétition où l’inventivité des architectes navals, des innovateurs, des créateurs est ouverte. Seules contraintes : la longueur, la largeur et la surface de voilure sont de mise.

Autant le dire tout de suite : vive la Litte Cup !

François Chevalier & Jacques Taglang

mercredi 1 avril 2015

Vincent Van Gogh, Marine Painter!







This self portrait shows the artist relaxed, inquisitive and relatively balanced – a far cry from other anxiety ridden portrayals
(oils on canvas,  41 x 32,5 cm, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam)

Vincent Van Gogh, Marine Painter!

Sailboat on the river Seine at Asnières, summer 1887 (Vincent Van Gogh)

There are all sorts of written works. There are those that are written for the following day and trashed a year later. Then there are those intended for publication the following year, which stay projects for many years, but constitute a monumental work once published.

Jacques Taglang and I have shortlisted 150 paintings and 150 boats to set the pace of our next work, to be titled The Impressionists and Boating on the Seine. Since 2002, when we first came up with the idea, we have spent tens of thousands of hours in our quest and the book will be some 800 pages long and weigh in at around 10kg.

While researching for paintings and other impressionist works, our friend Philippe Quentin handed to me a cutting from an early 20th century book. It was a drawing of a Seine clipper by Van Gogh. Amazing! Even Gustave Caillebotte, who as a naval architect designed no less than twenty sailboats, had never portrayed any of his own boats in such detail.

Sailboat on the Seine river in Asnières, summer 1887 (Vincent Van Gogh Van Gogh indicates that the clipper is of blue colour. It was drawn in Asnières with a view of the town of Clichy. 

After his arrival in Paris in March 1886, Van Gogh made many friends at the studio of the painter Cormon. Emile Bernard invited him on several occasions to his parents' house in Asnières and he often visited Signac who also lived there from May 1887. We know of Paul Signac's enthusiasm for sailing, as well as Van Gogh's admiration of Monet, who had painted many sailboats on Seine ten years before. Vincent’s art dealer brother, Theo, sold no less than 23 of Monet's paintings.



The extrapolation of the perspectives on the drawing of Vincent Van Gogh to reconstitute the sail plan of the Asnières clipper

The representation of this Seine clipper is exceptional in Van Gogh's work because no other sketch - here a pencil drawing - mentions colors to be applied on a future canvas. It is impossible to tell whether such a project was ever carried out, but if so, it has completely disappeared, making this sketch all the more valuable.

Van Gogh considered his voyage to Paris extremely important to his art and indeed this sketch was scrupulously executed with great respect paid to the perspective. Extrapolation of this perspective makes it possible to reconstitute the sail plan of the clipper. 


Sail plan of the Asnière clipper by François Chevalier from the drawing by Vincent Van Gogh

In our next work you will be able to discover the boat’s lines, and more.

François Chevalier


Translation: Donan Raven and Nigel Pert