Archive for the 'Viper 640' Category

Viper 640 test sail

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA This was originally posted on my personal blog on September 9th, 2007. I’ve put it up here with today’s date since it would mess up the archive here to backdate it. Enjoy!

We’re working on selling our Viper 830. We want to get into something a bit smaller to facilitate rigging and sailing with less people. The 830 requires at least 3 people to rig and or sail and a truck to move due to it’s 2,200lb weight. The Viper 640 is one of the top options for something in the 20′ range as a replacement (the Melges 20, Laser SB3, and Open 5.70 are the other options). I got a chance to go up to Marblehead on Saturday and race 3 fall series races with a few of the boats. It’s a very relaxed series in the fall with only a few boats going out (but 20+ Sonars due to their upcoming worlds) but it was still a blast. I had contacted Justin Scott, the class president and asked when he could get me out on the boat. Saturday worked and we had a great time. 3 races, we got a 1st (we think the finish was +- 2′ between us and second!), a wire to wire first, and a wire to wire second. It was a great time, and they are fantastic little boats. It was interesting to see how much work hiking is again (you actively hike upwind, even in the ~12knots true we had). Continue reading ‘Viper 640 test sail’

Viper 640

viper.jpg The viper is another obvious option in this 20′ sportboat segment. It’s been around for over 10 years, but they haven’t been built much in that span. Originally they were built in the US but the Viper 830 killed that business. The molds have since been bought and production is again underway in the UK.

The viper is a very fun little boat with a easy setup, carbon right and spinnaker with a retrieval line. On paper it really is the ideal boat for us. I say on paper because I’ve sailed them twice, once on LIS with medium breeze and once in Marblehead in reasonably light breeze. They are very fast fun boats. My biggest concern is the amount of hiking required. They are very light on the ballast with only 275lbs in the keel, and that’s only four and a half feet down. That means even in a Marblehead breeze it’s a lot of hiking. I’m not 100% against hiking, it’s just that trapping would be a lot easier, and I’d also like to be able to sail this boat alone. I don’t think it’s realistic to sail a viper alone, and I also think it’s a bit too athletic for my 62 y/o father and myself to sail. Continue reading ‘Viper 640′