Rigging a mixed masters 2x

No, ergs don't yet float, but some of us do, and here's where you get to discuss that other form of rowing.
Post Reply
20stone
Paddler
Posts: 2
Joined: December 6th, 2018, 4:38 pm

Rigging a mixed masters 2x

Post by 20stone » December 6th, 2018, 4:49 pm

Howdy all.

My wife and I are getting on the water in a 2x, and I have some rigging questions on how to address rowers of different power capabilities and sizes.

First, I am 6'4"/230lbs (down a bit from my handle name), and my wife is 5'9"/170, and are both in our 50s. While I have been told that the heavier person should be stroke, I have seen in some videos of masters championships (in which we will NOT be competing, mind you) have a mix of guy in bow and guy in stroke.

? - Can I sit in bow so that I can worry about hitting bridges? If so, I assume I would move our rig sternward to move the CG back a bit, correct?

Second, I am a bit taller and quite a bit stronger than my wife, and have talked my way into three conflicting (and likely ALL wrong) rigging possibilities:
1) Same spread, same inboard, more outboard for me - I take up more load, and am longer through the water
2) All the same - If we are following the "catching pegs with your blades" philosophy, we'd want to be the same length in the water - If I am outpulling her, it just lightens the load on her oars
3) (The crazy one) - Same dimensions, larger blades for me - This would give more load to me with the same length through the water

? - Thoughts on (a) where to start and (b) what to tweak so we can both give it our best

TIA

jamesg
Half Marathon Poster
Posts: 2315
Joined: March 18th, 2006, 3:44 am
Location: Trentino Italy

Re: Rigging a mixed masters 2x

Post by jamesg » December 7th, 2018, 2:39 am

What experience of sculling have you already?

Heavier at bow would make steering more difficult, but perhaps it's more important to decide who does it; staying on course can be hard work. Visibility of markers astern can make it easier by acting sooner. Bow in any case is lookout for boats, buoys, swimmers etc.

I'd put the better sculler in the stern, but be careful anyway, no one wants a pair of sculls in their spine.

Hatchets move through the water only radially (endways), due to hydrodynamic wing effects; so at first guess being taller you'll need longer sculls (to limit the arc) but with the same inboard-outboard ratios, and a wider span.
78y, 188cm, 85kg, MHR 155. Last 2k (21 Jan 19) 8.27@24

20stone
Paddler
Posts: 2
Joined: December 6th, 2018, 4:38 pm

Re: Rigging a mixed masters 2x

Post by 20stone » December 7th, 2018, 3:35 am

jamesg wrote:
December 7th, 2018, 2:39 am
What experience of sculling have you already?
I have been out a few times over the years, having learned enough to be comfortable (though a little wobbly) in a racing single back in college, and have gotten out rarely since then. In the last few weeks, I have been out a few times in a racing 2x (both with my wife and with more experienced rowers) and have been very comfortable.

I sat 5 in a sweep boat, and, as such, am more accustomed to being head down and not having to do any thinking, so sitting stroke has some appeal. However, I am the more confident rower of the two of us, and she might do better if she didn’t have to worry about bridges, paddleboards and kayaks.
jamesg wrote:
December 7th, 2018, 2:39 am
Hatchets move through the water only radially (endways), due to hydrodynamic wing effects; so at first guess being taller you'll need longer sculls (to limit the arc) but with the same inboard-outboard ratios, and a wider span.


The radial movement helps. With that I envision that I could also crank up the leverage a little on me with now ill effects as long as the blades are going through the same arc.

Thanks

Edward4492
10k Poster
Posts: 1606
Joined: March 7th, 2014, 11:34 pm

Re: Rigging a mixed masters 2x

Post by Edward4492 » December 18th, 2018, 11:01 pm

I have a fair amount of time in a mixed 2x including four races. Still a rookie. Me and my partner are close in weight (she's 155 I'm 170) and Marianne is 5'8" and I'm 6 foot. I've been bowing the past two years as we're still relative rookies (two full years of rowing) and she has not wanted the added stress of bowing. Next year we're going to switch it up. We asked a coach to work with us and the first thing he said was " put Marianne in bow". We had a chance to try it at the end of the season and it was an immediate improvement. I could really lengthen out and she had no trouble following me. She also did a great job steering; she has great instincts and is a serious student of the sport. And we figure for sprints all she has to do is run a buoy line.
So based on height, the consensus seems to be the taller rower in the stern; assuming all other things are equal (which they never are). We're rigged neutral, probably due to our relatively close weight.

User avatar
Remo
1k Poster
Posts: 129
Joined: October 17th, 2017, 7:21 pm

Re: Rigging a mixed masters 2x

Post by Remo » December 25th, 2018, 3:10 pm

Start with
"2) All the same - If we are following the "catching pegs with your blades" philosophy, we'd want to be the same length in the water - If I am outpulling her, it just lightens the load on her oars" This is the preferred solution.

If your length becomes a problem (because she is shorter), you would want to decrease her spread slightly and decrease the inboard by the same amount (it doesn't take much). This would make the blade have the same length in the water. Yes, you would be rigging her heavy -- but don't worry about that as long as you are getting the blades in and out at the same time you are doing okay. And don't worry about being too strong: there is very limited slippage of the blade in the water. Your goal is to make the blades come in and out together

Yes, there is a slight preference to having the heavier person at stroke, mainly for feel. Think of it this way, if you are stroking, the momentum of your body creates a bigger signal to her of how to properly time the stroke. But if you are worried about bridges, then you'd be best at bow.
Stewart MH 61 https://log.concept2.com/profile/4926
Started rowing at Cal in 1975 and sculled for a few years thereafter. Still follow the sport religiously. In some Latin languages, "Remo" means "the Rower" or "to row".

frankieboy
Paddler
Posts: 15
Joined: February 2nd, 2015, 5:38 pm

Re: Rigging a mixed masters 2x

Post by frankieboy » January 2nd, 2019, 1:35 pm

IMHO it's important to get the catch and finish angles and timings the same, to do that you may need to adjust something but old people (as I am discovering myself) are less flexible generally than young people and women seem to be more flexible than men. The upshot is that although you are considerably taller your range may be only marginally more than your partner.
When the blades lock in the water basically they stay where they are and you pull the boat past the end of the blade. If the stronger person puts more effort in then the crew makes the boat go faster, you wont be completing your stroke earlier than your partner due to you putting more effort in.

Play around with the catch and finish timing and angles and go from there.

Post Reply