Custom Step-by-Step Victoria R/C Sailing Yachts by OMSA
revision May 15, 2008, Chapter C

Okanagan Model Sailboat Association, Kelowna, B.C. Canada

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Step C1: Building your mast and booms.

 These are our basic building materials for a very lightweight and functional mast and boom set-up. Three archery arrow blanks made by Easton , one each of model 2413, 2213 and 2013. They were chosen to be compatible with the stock kit components such as the the main-sail goose-neck, mast-head crane and the spreader arm. The mast will be made from the larger #2413 with an insert of #2213 at the top of the mast. The jib boom will be made from the smallest #2013 and the main boom will be made from a length of the #2013 and a short length of #2213 at the goose-neck.


Step C2: Details for your custom mast.


 The mast is made from the largest (#2413) and the medium (#2213) diameter arrow shafts while saving the smallest shaft (#2013) for the main boom and jib club.

With a fine hacksaw, cut off a full 2" off the pointy end of the largest diameter arrow shaft. (that is the 3/8" outside diameter, Easton #2413)

If you notice that these arrows are difficult to cut, don't blame yourself... they are really tough and very stiff.

 Stop: In the next paragraph you will be asked to drill a couple of 3/32" holes (or better yet a #40 drill) in the front surface of your mast. Note: Front surface.. Do not drill entirely though your mast.. The magic of Pop rivets is that they only need one surface to grip securely..

 Insert the Easton #2213 arrow into the larger #2413 shaft to a depth of about 2".


 Drill two 3/32" (or #40 drill ) holes into the overlapped portion of the two shafts. One hole should be about 3/8" from the end of the overlap and the other about 3/8" from the other end of the overlap. Since we are now going to secure the shafts together with a couple of 3/32 " aluminum pop rivets , these two holes need to be a few thousands of an inch oversize.

Note: All rivets are placed on the front side of the mast in all steps including this one. The reason for this is that if the rivets are on the aft side of the mast they tend to interfere a bit with the free movement of the mainsail.

 With a hand-operated "Pop" riveter, join the two shafts together with two 3/32" all-aluminum Pop rivets. These are the smallest aluminum pop rivets readily available and are just right for this job. These rivets are just part of the many items included in the LONGBOW Victoria hardware kit.

Now cut the top off the inserted (smaller) shaft so that the overall length of the two pieces is exactly 42" long. Now you have a mast ready for the kit pieces such as the goose neck, and mast head crane. The larger shaft will later insert perfectly into the stock mast step on the deck or into the custom LONGBOW 4 position mast step.


Step C3: Adding the standing rigging hardware to your Victoria mast.

 There are many different ways to rig your Victoria but the approach that will be described here is a conservative one that will support the mast well and still minimize the upper weight and windage. We recommend that your first Victoria have two shroud lines on each side, and no spreader bar (as of July 15, 2005) and no jenny strut (sometimes called a jumper). The shroud lines on each side will comprise one lower shroud (attached at 21") , and one upper shroud line reaching up and terminating at the 37" point near where the jib forestay is attached.

The material for our shroud lines that our group exclusively uses is the very thin, attractive and very strong "Tiger Tail", a nylon-coated, stainless steel wire of .015" diameter and is part of the LONGBOW Victoria custom rigging kit.

Step C3b: Upper shroud and upper jib attachments.

February 14, 2006

 Here is an example of a very recent Victoria that I built using a 1/16" brass cotter pin at 37" for the upper shroud attachments and another one at 37 1/4" for the forestay/jib halyard attachment.

The upper shroud cotter pin is inserted through the mast and an eye on the opposite side formed and soldered shut so that there is an eye on both sides of the mast.

The use of the brass cotter pins for the attach points gets around the problem of the luff of the main sail rubbing against the stock plastic pieces that come with the Victoria kit. This interference problem can prevent the main sail from filling reliably in light air.

The 1/16" brass cotter pins are easily robust enough for this purpose.

I like this one a lot and has now become my "standard" for both the upper shroud and the lower shroud attach points.

The thin line passing up through the forestay eye is the jib topping lift which is described in chapter I.


Step C3c: Mast-head crane insert

4.0 SPARS (2001) 
d) Mast height, when measured from deck to the top of the cap portion of the mast crane, shall not exceed 43 inches.

Find the plastic mast-head crane in your Victoria kit and align it up so that the long end of the crane faces the back or aft side of the mast. With a bit of persuasion, it can be forced into the top of the mast. It fits so well into the Easton #2213 arrow that there is no need to glue it in place.

Later in this chapter we will show you how to modify the crane to accept a thin 4" piece of aircraft grade aluminum in order to extend the length of the crane. The crane will be used to attach the top end of the backstay rigging line.

NOTE: that we must stay within the 43" class rules of the mast height limit.



Step C3d: Spreader arm.

 In your kit you will find two shroud spreaders.
You may well choose to discard them entirely...

For light air sailing, we do not recommend using a spreader of any kind as the mast is plenty stiff and the spreader can get in the way of both the luff of the mainsail and the jib topping lift line.

But if you insist on using a spreader with your Victoria here is a nice example of using a 3/32" brass tube inserted into the mast at 21". This is lighter in weight than the stock plastic spreader.

This builder used two lower shrouds on each side and attached them to an aluminum tab riveted to the sides of the masts.
One advantage of this custom spreader is that it avoids any interference between the spreader and the front edge (the luff) of the main sail.


 Here is an example of a Victoria constructed without a spreader of any kind and used two lower shrouds to ensure a lot of mast control. These lower shrouds were attached at a point 21" above the deck of the Victoria and were riveted in place after a wrap around a 3/32" rivet.

An improvement on this would be to slip on a rigging crimp over the lower shrouds to form a tight loop just below the rivet.

Avoiding the use of a mast spreader further reduces the upper weight of the rigging. A spreaderless design also precludes any possibility of the jib topping-lift fouling around the end of the spreader which is not a rare occurence.


Step C3e: Main boom goose-neck assembly


 The components shown here that are found in your Victoria kit make up a very serviceable goose-neck assembly to attach our main boom as well as the lower attach point for our rigid boom-vang that will be shown in step #C6.


Find the three identical pieces shown here that slip over the lower end of the mast. You will find that each of these three pieces have a very small (1/32") hole. Enlarge these three holes to 1/16" to allow the mainsail down-haul line to run through to the deck, and then rivet in place as shown. The lower piece is at the 5/8" point and the two opposing pieces are placed centered on the 2 1/4" point. A tip: We find it very useful to slip a 3/32" drill bit or 3/32" tubing through all three pieces so that they are easier to align with each other during the mounting process.

 Here are the three items , aligned with a #40 or 3/32" drill bit and lightly glued to the lower part of the mast in preparation for three 3/32" aluminum rivets. The two pieces at the 2 1/4" point will be fitted with the stock goose-neck for the mainsail boom while the piece at the 5/8" point will mount the rigid boom-vang that can be seen in Step #C6. The lower fitting can be as much as 1" off the deck and still function as designed.



Step C3f: mast-head crane modification.
 The stock mast-head crane isn't long enough for the back-stay to properly clear the main-sail so here is how to extend your mast-head crane to the maximum allowable 4" using more of your small supply of .032" (about 1/32") type aircraft-grade aluminum alloy. These next steps are easier to do than to describe and requires only your basic tools. There are other ways to install a 4" mast-head crane, but this method of using the existing plastic crane insert just seems to work perfectly.


 Cut off the tail end of the existing mast-head crane so that it resembles the front side.


With a hack-saw carefully cut a slot in the plastic remains. Leave a bit of plastic at the lower edge to help support the new crane.

 Cut a 4" by 1/4" or perhaps 4" by 5/16" arm from your aircraft-grade aluminum sheet that you were able to scrounge up at the airport. (This piece is included in the OMSA Victoria hardware kit)
Drill a 1/16" hole at the aft end of the new arm for the backstay, and another 1/16" hole at the 3/4" point to anchor the head of the mainsail.

Insert the new crane into the slot that you cut in the plastic piece.


 Drill a couple of 1/16" holes right through the plastic and aluminum.

Pin the assembly together with two short pieces of 1/16" diameter brass or aluminum rod. (some thin brazing rods work as well)



 Cut the pins to length; give the pins a few of taps with your hammer to spread the ends;
and then smooth with a flat file.

Admire your work.
This is even better than shoveling snow.


Step C4: Constructing the mainsail boom.

This is the end result of two pieces of your archery arrows to make the mainsail boom. The fore end of the boom is a 2" piece of the Easton #2213 material which is exactly the right diameter to accept the stock Victoria goose-neck. The bulk of the boom is #2013 material with a 1" overlap and pop riveted to the short piece of 2213.
The overall length of the aluminum boom is then cut to 14" overall, not counting the length of the plastic goose-neck insert. This is a bit longer than the stock kit boom which allows for easier out-haul adjustment on the mainsail to control the mainsail shape.


 Here is a close-up of the goose-neck end of the mainsail boom. Note the two different sizes of material here. Most of the boom is of the lighter, smaller #2013 size in order to save a bit of unnecessary weight while the fore end of the boom is of the #2213 material to fit the stock goose-neck.

A tip: It is a lot easier to assemble the three pieces of the stock goose-neck shown here before forcing it into the end of the arrow shaft.


The main boom and gooseneck is now assembled with the stock Victoria pieces as shown here and riveted to the mast centered on a point 2 1/4" inches above the deck.

The plastic piece shown near the bottom of the mast will be used to attach either the unsatisfactory stock boom-vang (made of string) or the very nice LONGBOW Victoria boom-vang.

The result of your efforts so far.

Isn't this fun??



Step C5: Building your jib boom and installing the remaining boom fittings.
 This is even easier than making your mainsail boom as it is only one piece of #2013 arrow, 12 3/8" long. Here is the final product shown side by side with the main-sail boom. Note the use of short 1/16" diameter brass cotter pins that allow easy attachments to your lines and jib swivel and also note the soft plastic tubes at the extreme aft end of each boom to allow the passage of the out-haul line which helps to control the shape or fullness of the sails. The idea here is to ensure that the out-haul line does not fray and wear through, which it surely will if some protection is not given to it.



 The longer of these two booms is the main-sail boom with the goose-neck installed and the shorter one is the jib boom.

On the main boom the 1/16" brass cotter pins are inserted into 1/16" holes at points 2 3/8" (boom-vang) , at 7"( main sheet attachment), and at 10 3/4" (out-haul line to corner of sail) all bent-over and trimmed close.
The cotter pin at 2 3/8" on the main boom can accept a rigid boom-vang (see Step C6) . A custom cotter pin is supplied with the LONGBOW boom vang for this purpose.

On the jib boom the 1/16" brass or steel cotter pins are inserted into 1/16" holes at points 3/8" (forestay and jib tack), 3 3/4" (jib swivel) , 9"( out-haul line) and 10 3/4" ( jib sheet attachment) without a twist on any of them. The cotter pin at 3/8'' is inserted with the loop up to capture both the jib forestay and the jib tack.

Both booms have the plastic feed-throughs inserted through 3/32" holes at the extreme aft ends for the out-haul lines to be installed later. Your particular plastic feed-throughs (common wire insulation) might require a different drill hole size.


 Here is the convenient source of the
soft plastic feed-throughs
for the outhaul lines at the aft end of each boom
using the plastic insulation from
#14 electrical wire.
Note: the front cotter pin on the jib boom at 3/8" has the loop UP to fasten the forestay and the luff of the jib foresail,
Note: All other cotter pins have the loop DOWN on the underside of the boom for line attachments.
Note: the #2 stainless ball-bearing swivel at the cotter pin at the 3 3/4" spot on the jib boom.
(only swivels that are of the ball bearing type turn sufficiently free for this application)

Note: Not yet shown here is a 1" inch length of lead fishing weight inserted into the very front of the jib boom prior to drilling and inserting the first cotter pin to hold it in place. This important addition better balances the jib boom to make it easier to keep the jib in the "wing-on-wing" position while sailing directly downwind.
Also, the ideal position of the cotter pins that connect to the control lines (sheets) and sail servo arms are somewhat dependent upon the characteristics of the particular sail-servo. The positions shown are assuming the use of the Futaba S3802 sail servo. If another servo is used you may have to experiment a bit to find the ideal attach point of the sail sheets in order to obtain the full range of travel for each of the two sails. This is easy to do as it just requires the drilling of another 1/16" hole not far away from the points shown here.

 You might wish to give the mast and the two booms a lightly sprayed coat of flat black primer paint that will make them indistinguishable from a carbon fiber setup. They will look great.


Step C6: A refined boom-vang

The purpose of a boom-vang is to support the main boom securely, and to allow the angle of the boom to be adjusted up or down and still allow the boom to swing very freely from side to side as the sails are pulled in or let out.

LONGBOW Victoria boom-vang

The stock kit boom-vang is a very unsatisfactory arrangement of a length of line and a bowsie to tension the boom.

Over the last couple of years at OMSA we have experimented with a number of designs for a rigid boom-vang which allows the boom to tension the main sail an appropriate amount depending on the wind conditions.

One preferred design now appears to be the Victoria custom boom-vang from LONGBOW.
This vang is very reliable and makes the vang finger-adjustable with just a turn or two of the turn-buckle.

There are two 2-56 mounting nuts supplied with this vang. They are adjusted so that there is a small amount of clearance in the ball joint, allowing the main boom to tack on the slightest of breezes.

The LONGBOW boom-vang looks great, weighs less than 1/4 of an ounce and is very popular with our local sailors.... See the
Catalogue page for more details.. This vang can easily be installed on existing Victoria sailboats.

To be used for non-commercial purposes only, Copyright 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008
, James Anderson, Kelowna B.C., Canada,

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