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The Wabbit 2.0 aka Franken Wabbit


  • The Wabbit 2.0 aka Franken Wabbit

    "There were 63 Wylie Wabbits built between 1981 and 1984" According to Kim Desenberg, the class's god father and primary builder, "2 have been lost so I guess there are 61 still in existence" The original Wabbit was Tom Wylie's concept, which was "in response to the energy crisis of the late 70's and early 80's, as a fun little family boat that you could trailer behind small cars, which had suddenly become very popular with fuel shortages, long lines at gas stations and soaring fuel prices." Recalls to Tom.

    Forward 3 decades, and take Tom's original concept and modernize it, utilizing one of his boats as a male mold, plumb the bow, add a retractable sprit, open the transom, redo the cabin top, replace the 400lb blade keel with an estimated 600lb bulb one and toss on
    a Melges 24 mast and what do you have?

    The Wabbit 2.0 or Turbo Wabbit.

    With a design concept to match another modified Wylie design, "Ocelot" the boat was built and sailed in the lighter wind waters of the greater Portland Area, the boat was located via an online broker 2 years ago and brought to the Bay Area. "Kristen's father saw it online and sent us some of the photos" Says Andrew Hura, Kristen's fiancee and boat partner. "We saw it and were immediately wanting it"

    Andrew is quite accustomed to sailing on skinny boats with high aspect rigging is still trying to find a happy medium with his one off boat he and Kristen have named "Run Wild". What they have found that is in even moderate wind and chop the current sprit brings in water, buckets of it, and after consoling with Tom and others are considering a smaller fixed sprit.

    The mast currently hoists a pin top main, but Andrew, a sailmaker with Doyle Sails loft in Alameda, will be building a square top main, going for a higher aspect sail plan. The rudder is also subject to modification, and was already brought inboard from transom mount that came with Run Wild's original built.

    Andrew notes that numerous wabbit owners have come by to check out the boat and marvel at the workmanship, but any consideration of the fleet rushing out to the hardware store to stock up on sawzall blades are tempered by class rules, ratings issues, and the notion that the Wabbits do a fine job just as they are. "The open transom" Says Tom Wylie "Is maybe the one area I could see Wabbit owners modifying, but I'm not convinced the class as a whole would endorse it. A simpler solution for increased performance might be a double trapeze set up, but again, I don't see that the class as a whole endorsing it."

    Andrew Hura and Run Wild

    Andrew and Kristen will be sailing Run Wild in the beer can series in the Estuary this season and perhaps will engage in some lighter air events as the calendar permits. As of yet, they have not sailed side by side with a stock Wabbit, which Andrew hopes will happen soon. He notes that there are 4-5 Wabbits nearby, so hopefully Wabbit 1.0 and Wabbit 2.0 or Franken Wabbit's will cross on the bunny trail in the near future!
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