In 2009, the Worldwide International Canoe community agreed that the IC should become a development class again after a 37 year period as a one design using the Nethercott hull shape. The Nethercott boats (known as IC One Design ICOD) are still sailed competitively and now available at a very low entry level price offering a wonderful way to introduce new sailors to the dark arts of IC sailing.
For the more adventurous and seeking the ultimate ride, the latest designs are real cutting edge boats which are designed to be highly efficient taking narrow slender hull design to the limits. The rules adopted in 2009 world wide were intended to use the latest design and boat building techniques to produce the most slippery hulls possible down to a minimum weight. This is accomplished by reducing maximum beam at the waterline to 750mm (was 1050mm) and the all up weight has been reduced to a minimum of 50kg including rig and foils. The design is still restricted to a rig of 10m2 which can be a una rig and the righting moment must be provided by a 2m sliding seat. The box rule allows any hull shape to be accommodated so long as there is an overall length of 5200mm and at a point chosen within 1.6 and 2.5m from the stern the hull beam must not measure less than 750mm between 100-150mm from the keel line. Forward and aft of this Beam Measurement Station (BMS) the hull must be smooth within 1m and can't be hollow measured across the BMS.
This has lead to a number of many new designs most of which have developed towards a very fine bow entry, low rocker and either a traditional low drag rounded stern or an angular fat bottom shape to give a flatter planning section aft. Underwater sections vary from a flatter double chine approach to a very rounded bilge with flat aft sections.
The latest rules has allowed the class to again become the leading performance monohull without a spinnaker and speeds are continue to rise with optimised hull shapes and development of new rigs to squeeze the very best performance form 10m of sail with amazing upwind and reaching performance.
Hull development has been rapid over the last 7 years but three main designs have now materialised and the performance between these designs is now very similar. The class has recognised that whilst individuality is essential it's also important to allow sailors to buy a boat which is not going to be outgunned within a short period of time. Designs have largely stabilised to such an extent that a standard boat can be bought off the shelf and raced competitively with minor tweaks and adjustment of sails and rigs possible to make that difference at the top of the fleet.
The main designs are available from C12 Performance Boats and Bloodaxe Boats offering well proven production moulded boats with a proven pedigree. There are also many individuals are produce their own one off designs and this options is available to anyone who has the necessary skills, time and patience to build their own.
The following shows some of the designs currently available from professional builders in kit and partially/full built form.
One of the very original designs, it was intended to be a gentle transition from the Nethercott design to the new rules, maintaining the traditional shape but tweaked to meet the new box rule concept and give minimal beam. The bow entry was kept deliberately rounded to "avoid the boat becoming too extreme" in the words of the designer, Phil Morrison.
The first boat of only two was Scarlet O'Hara GBR311 commissioned by ICF chairman Phil Robin with GBR319 two years later. The cockpit has a dished shape to maintain freeboard.
The first mould was made by Andy Patterson at Bloodaxe Boats who is a skilled practitioner of his art and developed many leading hull designs in several classes including; Moth, Cherub and National 12 classes.
Dragonfly design - Warren/Bloodaxe
Designed by Alistair Warren and built by Bloodaxe boats, this is a development of Alistair's first design Monkey and uses a fairly flat bottom with double chine construction. This design uses the flat bottom between the chines with relatively small amount of rocker to promote early planning at the slight expense of a greater wetted area. The flat bottom is also believed to be relatively more stable then some of the other designs.
The original boat GBR317 has proved to be a quick boat with Alistair being the highest positioned boat in the World Championships in 2015 and is the current National and European champion. Two further boats have been built GBR326 &GBR328.
Maas Design - Maas/Bloodaxe
This design comes from the USA based on the Chris Maas design String Theory 2 which proved to be a successful shape at the 2011 World Championships in Germany and 2014 in San Francisco Bay. This design is characterized by a very sharp and narrow bow section with a fat transom using the new rules allowing a 45 degree return at the transom. The design has been adapted by Andy Patterson at Bloodaxe Boats who has design a plug.The first boat was commissioned by Max Reid GBR3and will be revealed at the London Dinghy Exhibition in March 2013. Two further boats were commissioned in 2014/15 GBR335 & 341
See www.bloodaxeboats.co.uk for a full set of information
C12 Performance Boats
This is a development of the M1 design by Steve Clarke with a broadly similar hull shape but with the addition of chine rails from the mid section of the boat forward. The idea is to reduce the amount of water pushed upwards when the nose slices through the waves and on fast reaching legs and downwind to promote lift and reduce energy lost to water being lifted vertically. The chines are also sharper right the way forward to the bows improving the water to hull interface and reducing drag. A flatter deck design has been used as well as placing the carriage tracks on the floor leaving the gunwale free for a better place for grip. The high domed fore deck has been used to maintain the dimensions used on a Nethercott and making the rigs interchangeable. The foils and seat and carriage are similarly designed
to be backwards compatible with a Nethercott design.
Five boats have currently been built to this design GBR320,321 and GBR324 from the original plug with the latter built with an optional spinnaker. Rob Bell and Steve Clarke created C12 Performance Boats to commercialise the sale of the Morrison design and Rob created a professional female mould and produced three boats; GBR327, 328 and 330. GBR328 is sailed by Robin Wood who has been National and European Champion.
The latest Morrison 3 design has only just been completed and is a result of 3 years development taking on the lesson learned at the World Championships in the windy and choppy conditions of San Francisco Bay. The design has now evolved into a more slender profile with wave piercing bow and fine entry with a foredeck designed to slice through waves and shed water quickly using tumble home on the back of the foredeck and reduced beam at the mast. The shroud base has been extended onto winglets and the carriage track is moulded in to the top sides.
The boat has been fully productionised with mould created for deck and hull and a full set of foils and accessories available to create the first fully production boat available off the shelf to give a readily available racing package which is easily maintained. Its hoped that this will attract new sailors to be fleet and make the class more accessible.
Four boats are currently under construction GBR338,339,340 and 342 for the start of the 2017 season with GBR338 expected to be featured in the Dinghy Exhibition at Alexandra Palace in March 2017.
See www.c12performanceboats.co.uk for a full set of photographs and details
Amateur Built boats
A number of individuals have built boats from there own designs and made from either plywood bent to shape using pre-cut panels or by constructing a male plug over which carbon fibre sheet is laid with a foam core and outer skin.
The most notable of these designs is GBR308 "Monkey" which was one of the first of the new rules boats and this till enjoys competitive sailing today and those made by John Ellis who has made many boats over a 30 year period from Nethercott IC's through AC's and latterly very slim designs to the new rules. John's latest boat GBR334 has a very fine entry bow and has proven to be very quick in light winds.