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Bruce Kirby, designer of the famous Laser, has passed away in Ottawa. 

He was 92.

Edit: (showing my recent time out of the class) 

He was awarded almost US$7million earlier this year after a very long legal battle with Laser Performance Europe and Quarter Moon, who were allegedly building non compliant Lasers and not paying royalties, or something.

What a sad way to destroy a legacy.

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Jeez, I remember going for a blat in the first laser that ever came in to NZ. Was in the early 70s I think. I didn't think people would go for the minimalist sail controls and not being able to add any. Kiwis are hot rodders at heart, or used to be. But it seemed very flash.

Every boat designer I've ever had a decent conversation with has a story or two about being dicked out of royalty payments. There are some boats builders who owe a few people for sure.

Bruce also designed the Norwalk Island Sharpie range - very popular in Oz and the US but largely ignored here.

https://www.nisboats.com/

 

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Yes a very nice guy, corresponded with him for a while in the eighties then bought the first Norwalk Island sharpie plans in this part of the world, he jokingly said that he would visit when we won the Americas Cup!   Never did build the boat-too busy sailing conventional keelers here and building dinghies.

$695.00 was the price each month in Seaspray -yes that is for a complete Laser and it was a lot of money, but it wasnt long till the Zephyrs under Tamaki yacht club were being ignored and they had a good fleet of Lasers. Dont know how many Murray Crockett built here?

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20 minutes ago, waikiore said:

but it wasnt long till the Zephyrs under Tamaki yacht club were being ignored and they had a good fleet of Lasers.

Remarkable the resurgence the Zephyrs have subsequently had.

There was a story that FoMoCo heard about Des using the name Zephyr and sent someone to check him out, as they had the name registered. Apparently after the guy made his way thru the black berries into Des' shed in Morrin Rd he figured out Des' one man operation was not much of a threat to them 😄

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There were no blackberrys growing the car park behind the shops in Panmure leading up to the engineering and Des's shed...but makes a good story.

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25 minutes ago, SloopJohnB said:

There were no blackberrys growing the car park behind the shops in Panmure leading up to the engineering and Des's shed...but makes a good story.

this was before Des moved to behind the Panmure shops, he used to be in Morrin Rd in the early 60's

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40 minutes ago, Dtwo said:

Found On Rubbish Dump

LOL, I'd forgotten that one (used to work in a car wrecking yard - lots of good natured winding up between those who had GM's and Fords). Letsee......

For Old Retired Drivers; Finest Overall Racing Device; Cheap Hastily Engineered Vehicle; there was one for Pontiac too but I won't repeat that here. Lots of just Holden together references. Fun times.

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1 hour ago, GregW said:

LOL, I'd forgotten that one (used to work in a car wrecking yard - lots of good natured winding up between those who had GM's and Fords). Letsee......

For Old Retired Drivers; Finest Overall Racing Device; Cheap Hastily Engineered Vehicle; there was one for Pontiac too but I won't repeat that here. Lots of just Holden together references. Fun times.

Fix It Again Tony

Breaks My Wallet/Bring Money Withyou...  😁

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