Viper Sailing Tips

Go Fast Tips from top Class Sailors

  • Jibing Your Viper 640: Hero or Zero By Zeke Horowitz (North Sails) and Peter Beardsley Whether you are gybing your Viper in 5 knots, 15 knots or 25 knots, A LOT can be gained or lost. Having the confidence that your crew can nail a stellar jibe at just the right moment in any condition is a truly liberating feeling that can see ...
  • How to Shift from Displacement to Planing Mode and How to Surf Waves By Zeke Horowitz, North One-Design Achieving top notch downwind performance in the Viper fleet is one of the best ways to make up points on the score board. Sailing in clean air and away from the “blob” (packs of boats) is key to getting maximum VMG. Generally people think of asymmetric spinnaker boats as having two modes ...
  • Mast Set-Up: Powering Up or Powering Down By Geoff Ewenson As a relatively new team to the Viper 640 Class the last couple of year, I have been on a steep learning curve. Being analytical about boat set-up helps and here are some of the things I’ve learned. Read the tuning guide for your sails The first step in learning any new boat is to ...
  • Easing the Spinnaker Halyard in Light Air Conditions By Rod Beurteaux The issue with asymmetrical sails is that the tension in luff of the sail determines the optimum angle the sail at which the sail should be used. In very light airs, the Viper will soak downwind if you can keep the spinnaker set and drawing. To achieve this, the sail needs to rotate ...
  • Sailing a Viper Four Up – Where do all the feet and fannies go??? By Danny Pletsch Weight considerations The same overall weight rule applies when sailing with a crew of four as it does with a crew of three. Try and stay below 600 lbs. total, otherwise you really start to give up speed downwind, but upwind doesn’t hurt as bad being heavy.   Where to put everyone and what do they ...
  • Setting it Straight: Viper Rig Tuning By Jackson Benvenutti, North Sails One Design If you haven’t noticed yet, your Viper mast is about as noodly as masts come. This makes it tricky to properly set-up your mast straight and in column; but here is how I do it. Note – it’s important to not skip any steps or cut any corners if ...
  • Optimizing Viper 640 Spin Sets and Douses By Dave Bolyard (Ullman Sails) and John Dane SETTING THE SPINNAKER Make sure the weather sheet is not cleated. Pull the sprit all the way out when skipper has rounded the offset mark while simultaneously raising the spinnaker halyard. If possible, pre-trimming the spin sheet also helps pull the sail out of the sleeve faster. Note: IN WINDY ...
  • Lessons Learned at Charleston Race Week Article by Zeke Horowitz While the weather in Charleston certainly didn’t live up to the hype, the racing and southern hospitality definitely did. Despite some less than ideal conditions, we were able to get in eight races on the Viper course and came away with many great memories of fun racing, and fun social gatherings at ...
  • How to tension full length battens This is a very thorough video on how to properly tension full length battens using the “rocket” batten ends. The “rocket” comes standard on North mainsails for the  Viper 640.
  • Go Fast Tips from NA’s winner, Chad Corning This Viper tip comes from Chad Corning. Chad crews for Jason Carroll on Argo. Team Argo is our current reigning North American Champion. Chad takes us on a quick ride around the race course on Argo. First priority for Argo is to make sure our setup is correct. There are a lot of sail options for the ...