No, no error in the title. Thomas Tison Is an out-of-the-box designer (here we told you about his wood and carbon boat), and when he read the Mini class rulebook and found that it mandated a “hull length of 6.50 m” (so the limitation was only relative to the hull), he decided to add an overhang toward the stern, just like the bowsprit at the bow.
With this idea in mind, he designed a structure that extends one meter from the transom, on which the rudder is installed. But why? The answer is simple: The Mini was designed for sailing on foils, and thus lifted out of the water. This will fly on two very marked V-shaped foils shifted far forward of normal and a rudder with adjustable bearing surface. And the greater the distance between the bow and stern appendages, the more stable the flight. Hence the idea of moving the rudder profile, which also serves as a stabilizer, as far back as possible.
In very short waves, or when the skipper is at rest, the foils can be retracted completely, negating drag when the hull, which is inspired by North American scows when sailing “normally.” Someone actually said that that severed prow and square deck make it look a bit like a pedal boat, but aesthetics count for nothing when it comes to technological research and experimentation.
“The farther the rudder is from the keel, the more its surface area can be reduced. Thus installed at the end of the structure, the rudder-which is smaller-has less resistance. To limit the impact of weight, the bracket is made entirely of Nomex carbon. It weighs only 3.5 kg! I chose the scow hull shape because on a small boat, the developed structural weight of the hull does not have much influence on the total weight, compared to the skipper who already weighs almost 10 percent of the boat’s weight,” Tison told Bateaux magazine.
If the “remote” rudder solution works, more extreme experimentation will also be possible, according to Tison, pushing the bracket protrusion well over a meter. We will see sailing this Mini soon, in the spring of this year. It is now being assembled. “We will perform a series of sensor tests on the entire boat before handing it over to a skipper for the upcoming Mini Transat 2021.”