Take heart my patient reader, for the long awaited sail-rig has evolved to the test stage. We already know how Aria rows. Like a song.
Martin and I chose a calm day for our first sail. Turned out to be breathless, but we had enough puffs to get a feel for how this 'seed flies.
It was apparent from the first, the free-footed sail needs a boom for windward work. The fixed keel shape, taken from Atkin's Valgerda allowed quite a bit of leeway, but I think that will improve with a boom as well. I intend to leave the foot loose, lash the sail to the boom at the tack and clew and use a downhaul from the clew to the base of the mast.
If this sounds confusing, we'll come back soon with photos and an updated report.
Please stay tuned.