Re: SHARPIES OF COURSE
> Can anyone tell me any info on the 34" design Black Gauntlet?I can't tell you anything authoritative that is not in the book Folding Schooner, but I have a few notions.
First, I think it's fair to say that the boat is from the same era as Black Skimmer, and PCB used the same notions about what makes a good sharpie and what makes good and easy ply construction. If you can put up with the noisy bow (a big if) and if you can be content with the very low interior (another big if), your reward will be a boat that is very fast in decent sailing weather on all points except dead to windward. She doesn't have enough power to carry sail to be good upwind.
The rig uses a lot of wire to stay the mast, and is altogether very high tech and expensive compared to the Black Skimmer rig and to what PCB went back to later sharpies. It always seem out of place to me. Of course, a high-tech rig improves the upwind performance.
There are several PCB designs that are close enough to the same class that they should be considered as alternatives. The AS-29 is one. It has a hugely better interior. I would look at Red Zinger, too. It's not a sharpie, and I think that's a good thing.
I wouldn't try to talk you out of Black Gauntlet if you wanted one for what it was, but if you wanted one as a substitute for something that was out of reach, I wouldn't be encouraging.