I quote JJTCTAYLOR
Wings will never be for everyone. But take for instance the sailor who can no longer hoist sails
or handle the rigging
efficiently due to age or ailment. They lose their love for easier system management, the trawler
. Why not offer wings as alternative. Easy enough for even a paraplegic to handle alone if you follow the Walker story.
Walker wingsail was mismanaged from the beginning as JOhn Walker really only was marketing
a demo for creating wing power on commercial shipping
. He never had a strategy for targeting recreational craft. By the time he had demo'd the possibility fuel
prices dropped significantly and his whole business premise failed. His new enterprise Shadotec PLC has not gone anywhere as investors have stayed away.
There are issues with any new designs. For instance the wing will have to be demountable for repairs
if ever needed. But technical wing repair would be done by any aircraft mechanic
. Looking at parts
to fail, not many. Single
teleflex cable to tail rudder(s) with an internal linkage to the slat. Only moving part taking a load is the mast bearing which is easily maintained.
AS far as danger
from squall, the wing would be expected to to freely turn in 4 knots of wind. The speed in which the wing will will feather is directly proportional to the loading. Big gust from new direction, wing will swing very fast. Much faster than your sail can drop, or you can sheet out. The wing is counterbalanced. Inertia for wing swing is centered on the mast. No dumping the lee rail in the drink with a fast moving wing, versus the accidental jibe of a normal sail.
Once feathered, the wings themselves present 1/30th the drag of a similar diameter circular mast, and considering the rigging
, wires etc, in much much less than any rig of equivalent sail area. In total much less drag force on a feathered wing than a bare pole sail boat. Bad winds expect the wing to create much less downwind force than a typical sail rig.
Certainly have to agree with all posters that redundant methods have to be established for wing control if electronics
fail. But I would NOT dismiss the possibility of a market for winged boat.
There are a few other clever things that wings do. Never flog, can create lift
in very light air, while sails flog about. Can set the rudders to back up the boat if desired. Man overboard
, set the rudders to reverse and wind brings boat to stop, then back up.
The tail rudders will set the wing to best angle of attack while sails have watch trim and are always a compromise. Set the tail rudders for speed desired and just steer.
Wings never stretch and lose shape over time, don't rip, with UV protective paint
no other maintenance
for up to 20 years. Bearing life should last longer than the boat.
Anything here look like a good idea ?
What wings will not do well is dead downwind. I could work around that shortfall.
It seems like this is the best way to cruise
, I am sure there more questions the power boats may have ............................ what are they?