zaterdag 5 januari 2013

Sculling Hydrofoil 1975 and 2009

Sculling Hydrofoil 1975 and 2009

As an enthousiast of hydrofoils I have also been following the development of hydrofoil rowing.

The oldest reference I have is from James Grogono who in 1975 build his sculling hydrofoil.
He describes this experience in his 1987 book "ICARUS the boat that flies".

I have scanned some photographs from this long out of print book.
He writes almost two pages about his attempts at hydrofoil sculling, not sketches, foil shapes and sizes are included, but some quotes are interesting I find :

"I had no evidence of travelling faster than a conventional sculling boat, an my Diamond Sculls fantasy began to fade Slightly"

"Some interest has been aroused in Marlow Rowing Club and one or two expert scullers tried their hand with the foils. They did not like the experience and no-one else became foilborne : such is the power of extreme motivation."


With the recent surge in hydrofoils (thanks to the Moth class), there also is a new group of people involved in hydrofoil sculling.
The group around John Morrell at Yale University, their webpage with explanation of the project, photogallery and video.
Naturally there is a youtube movie also

Their first set of foils seem to be alluminium. Lukily they are now also progressing into the carbon fibre, high aspect ratio wings.
What I do not understand is the lack of use of a surface feeler. I would even propose to use such a feeler on both the front as wel as the rear foil. The extra resistance of the feeler and the movable flap will certainly be counterbalanced by the much more stable flight.