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mcgreyger
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I have had a 16 ft Avon for 20 years. It seems to accelerate with just a couple of strokes. It has a glued in SB floor. I bought an Achilles 15.5 ft two years ago, it has a laced in SB floor and I am disappointed in how slowly it accelerates. Tracking is similar to Avon and maneuverability may be just a bit better. As I was cleaning and 303ing the other day it donned on me that the skirt on the bow and stern is huge. They probably balloon like a drift anchor and hold 7-8 gallons of water and act as a brake. Has anyone trimmed or glued the skirt of a lace in system to reduce this drag. Would there be a down side to doing this.
 

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I found my laced-in RMR sluggish to paddle compared to Hysides I have rented, and thought the same thing.

My instinct tells me the skirt area is to keep the lacing and grommets from getting caught up on anything. I've decided to just live with it, but if you decide to change something and it works, I'd be interested to hear about it.
 

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After racing in a few different rafts I have the opinion that lace in floors (like my older Hyside - year 2000ish. Hyside switched to glued in floors around 2002) not only accelerate slower but take more effort to keep moving faster than the current. A boat like the Sotar SS (that's what the US mens rafting team uses or at least used to use) is very noticeably faster in the water.
 

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Turbulence

It may not be just the shape of a floor holding water.

Any turbulence, even from just subtle undulations where the rope through grommets is, will act as a brake.

How many sailboat racing hulls does one see with imperfections?

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A plus for a laced in floor is repair / replacement.
Also, rarely in some pins, the floor rope can be cut allowing water to pass through either freeing the boating instantly or making it easier to unpin it.
 
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