The Rebuild & Sail Inventory Upgrade on Mumm 36 Boogie Flash
Local sailors and longtime friends David Wyeth and Vaughan Hunt rehab racing boats as a hobby. The pair spend a lot of time together, participating in weeknight sailing around Auckland and an occasional doublehanded race throughout the season. But what they love most about co-owning a boat is the rebuilding process. “If the boat is perfect, where’s the fun in that,” David remarked.“Most of our enjoyment of this co-ownership is the journey to get her back on track,” said David. “Reinventing systems, changing hardware–it’s about building something and seeing the project come to life. Our conversations aren’t about how we win races; rather, we can focus on keeping the boat moving forward and going quicker.”
What about Boogie Flash drew David and Vaughan’s attention?
David and Vaughan owned a few boats together, most recently, Moving Violation, an Elliot 5.9, which they had for 15 years. Once they ran out of things they could do, they were ready to tackle a new project. “We found this old Mumm 36, called Boogie Flash,” said David. “She needed some work, but it’s been a fun challenge, and we have both enjoyed our time figuring out how to improve every aspect of the boat.”
“There was nothing particularly attractive about her,” David explained. “But she had potential. We were most attracted to the fact that she looked like she needed saving.”
David and Vaughan race the Boogie Flash in the Rum Series on Friday nights and the partake in the summer series on Wednesday’s which will go through January. “There’s a few two-handed races in there that we try to fit in as well,” said Vaughan. “The Mumm 36 wasn’t designed to be two-handed, but we’ve got her in great shape for it these days, and boy, is she fun!”
New sails made a difference.
Talking to our team at North Sails, new sails bring life to older boats. Coming up with a new sail plan, changing the deck layout, seeing how things go, that’s what we like most. It’s about the whole process, not just about the racing.”
Sail expert Andrew Wills and sail designer Mickey Ickert at North Sails in Auckland were hands-on to help David and Vaughan design a sail package to get Boogie Flash back in action.
“We decided to go with a full 3Di RAW upwind inventory. Boogie Flash now has a square-top main and a new #1 & #2 jib. We cut a hole in the bow and installed a retractable pole, allowing us to add a brand new, huge symmetric kite. At the moment, the hull looks like a stolen and recovered car, but our sails are gorgeous,” David remarked.
Mickey Ickert designed sails for David in the 90s, so he knew Mickey would be the right choice for this new project. “We talked about what we were looking for in new sails, how we could optimize the rig, and fine-tune our settings to make her faster,” said David. “He designed a big symmetrical kite with broad shoulders, and it amped up our off-wind sailing. We also got a new #1 jib, which trims block to block like a dream.”
The duo modified the boat from its original factory settings, which made it more of a challenge. David commented, “Working with Andrew and Mickey made the sail part easy. When we hoisted our jib for the first time–it was perfect.”
“Every day we put the sails up, you could feel the difference,” said Vaughan. “The boat just lit up. It was effortless. The sails and rig are now balanced, and the boat builds speed constantly. Boogie Flash is so much faster and points four degrees higher compared to where she was when we bought her.”
North sail designer Mickey Ickert enjoyed working with David and Vaughan on their new project. “The most interesting part about projects like these is that an existing hull can be upgraded and still be competitive with the right sail inventory. The Mumm 36 is a great platform and a fast boat. The communication between David, Vaughan, Andrew, and myself was vital in this project’s success. The guys encouraged us to get larger sails on the rig and looked for solutions that were not driven by rule constraints.”
“Andrew was helpful because of his excellent knowledge of the racing format and was the perfect facilitator in this project’s communication,” said Mickey. “Once we had the ideas, I shared visuals with David and Vaughan using North Design Suite, which is a great way to show boat owners what we envision. By the end of the day, everyone was on the same page.”
What do David and Vaughan enjoy most about working with their local North Sails team?
“What we like about the support we’ve received from the North team is that they understand us and the boat. They know what we are looking for and understand what type of sailing we do. North has the best advice and the right sail options. Being fast out of the box is the bonus.
We haven’t looked back since,” said Vaughan. “It was like night and day. You could instantly feel the difference. Having a straight mast, new sails and wide spreaders swept back 20 degrees; we don’t need to use the runners all the time; thanks to Andrew and Mickey, we found the sweet spot for headsail trim.”
Located just east of Lake Tahoe, Minden, Nevada, may seem like an unlikely spot for North Sails’ 3Di manufacturing hub, a sailing industry flagship center. However, it is true that is home to North Sails’ cutting-edge 3Di technology.
NORTH SAILS RENEWS INTERNATIONAL PARTNERSHIP WITH CAPE 31 CLASS
World’s Leading Sailmaker continues its support of the Fast Growing, Owner Driver One Design Class
North Sails is proud to have worked closely with the Cape 31 Class since launching the first boat in 2017, developing the optimal sail wardrobe for One Design and IRC racing. The Cape 31 is a high-performance grand prix design, asymmetric boat designed by internationally renowned yacht designer Mark Mills. The boat has proven itself as an exhilarating one design boat that planes downwind in over 13 knots and rates well under multiple rating systems, making it attractive to many sailors.
The Cape 31 Class began racing beneath Table Mountain in Cape Town, SA but has taken the global sailing scene by storm in the last two years. With over 30 boats racing in the UK and several heading to the US, the Mediterranean, and Hong Kong, there are now worldwide class calendars forming for 2023 and beyond.
David Lenz, North Sails designer, notes;
“It’s awesome to have been involved with the Cape 31 class in the UK since the start. Picking up from the excellent work done in Cape Town, we had a great starting point for the sail designs. Since then, as with any new class, there has been tremendous progress as we work to understand what makes these boats go fast and how to use our technology, experience, and passion to produce the fastest sails in the fleet.”
David Lenz is not only a Cape 31 designer but has also been very successful racing in the class, including winning the 2022 Race Circuit overall on Russel Paters’ Squirt. Additionally, the class is filled with North Sails designers and experts, which results in theories being tested firsthand with developments and advancements being made weekly.
Commenting on the partnership, Tor Tomlinson Cheney, of Cape 31 Class, shares;
“North Sails has worked closely with the class since its inception and has been a major factor in the success of the class in the UK. Their support is invaluable, and we are pleased to extend our partnership with North Sails to an International level.”
The North Sails Cape 31 inventory is fully optimised for handicap and one design class racing and consists of one all-purpose 3Di Raw Carbon Square Top Mainsail and three 3Di Raw Helix Jibs. All 3Di sails have carbon leech battens and come ready to race. Downwind there are four spinnakers which all use a string drop system: an A1, A2, and A4 for running, plus an A3 for reaching.
As the class expands globally, North Sails is working to ensure that the best sail package can be provided to teams worldwide. Get in touch with North Sails expert Ben Saxton, Cape 31 class leader at North Sails, to learn more about the class and available sail options.