The EC-12 is a restricted design radio controlled model yacht class with fiberglass hulls made from near identical molds and otherwise restricted to similar construction. The result is a class of boats with similar speed potential. The goal, as in any good one-design class, is to have the skipper's tuning, tactics, and boat handling abilities determine the outcome.

   Also, the class wants the newest boat competitive with the 20-year old models, and equally competitive boats from all manufacturers. A stable class organization and a stable Class Rule has allowed this to happen.

   The EC-12 is approximately 5 ft. length over all, 23 lb displacement, and has a 6 ft. tall mast. As the lead-bellied replica of a full size America's Cup 12-meter, this hull shape copied from a 1962 aerodynamic test model, sails like a full-keel boat as opposed to an agile dinghy.  However, the Laws of Scale dictate things happen relatively quickly on the race course with model boats. A partial day's racing at a local regatta will easily have 14 starts and many more mark roundings.  Tuning, tactics, and concentration are critical to racing success. These boats tune similar to a big boat although, during the race, class rules limit trim to sheets, rudder, and an optional jib boom adjustment called a twitcher.

   The heavy displacement full-keel form of the EC-12 differs from most other sanctioned monohull model yacht racing classes which are a much lighter hull design using long fin keels with bulbs for ballast.  The lighter designs are faster, in most conditions. They also can be weed-catchers, restricting where you sail, such as in the Seattle area, with a milfoil weed problem.  Weeds are not a problem with EC-12's, and they perform well in the light winds we often find near shore. They also are shallower draft than the typical fin keel design, although depth is usually not a concern.

   Across the country from Florida to Washington state, EC-12s are actively raced all 12 months of the year. As of Feb 2002,  One hundred an seventy one current AMYA members own EC-12 boats and over 1450 boats have been registered since 1971. The annual U.S. National Championship is well attended by sailors from across the country. This is organized racing with an emphasis on friendly competition. Newcomers are welcome and there is healthy willingness to share go-fast ideas.

   The class is well supported through various forms of documentation and plans, all readily available to the new skipper

   Updated from an article by Rod Carr.

   The original design which became the East Coast 12 Meter was a Charles Morgan design #2770. Nicknamed Eagle, the design was prepared circa 1962-63 and made into a 9/10" = 1' scale model for aerodynamic testing. The design was never considered for full size construction as a potential defender of the 1964 America's Cup, but was use to study ways of reducing the troublesome  quarter wave produced from older designs.  As originally conceived, the hull form was similar to Constellation and showed a reasonably full fore body, with only limited reduction in the forefoot.  A "spoon" bow is shown in the original drawings, but the snub nose was extended out to form the somewhat more graceful shape we recognize today, probably by Buddy Black, who used the aerodynamic model as a plug for making the first fiberglass molds.

   Of the hulls which came from that first mold, hull number 25, later called Flame, was eventually used to produce secondary molds.  Production of hulls for R/C racing started in Florida and are reported in publications as early as 1968.  In the late 60's, John Reynolds of Orlando, Florida began production of hulls in concert with Buddy Black.  One set of molds migrated to the Washington, D.C. area in 1970, just as the American Model Yacht Association (AMYA) was forming.  A few hulls were produced by Charles Black, brother of Buddy, and then the mold was consigned to Rod Carr of Chevy Chase, Maryland who began production of bare hulls doing business as Carr's Boatyard. Early efforts in organization of the class for racing accepted a number of models all of approximately the same size.  Such hulls as the Hartman Olympia and Jacobson's Regatta One-Design were gathered under an umbrella and named the East Coast 12 Meter (EC-12M).  The name was chosen to differentiate the approximately 5' long group of yachts from another 12 meter being produced in Newport, California and called West Coast 12 Meter at the time.  The 6' long larger California boat was subsequently renamed the Newport 12 and has raced in California as a one-design since that time.

   The first EC-12M Class Secretary, Rod Carr, designated Memphis, Tennessee as the site of the first annual Class Championship Regatta to be held in the summer of 1971.  The group that assembled was quite a sight.  It included models from the Morgan design from Florida, California, and Virginia; Hartman Olympia from Illinois; and a scratch built 12-meter variant from Maryland.  When the event was over it had been won by a Morgan hull, but the scratch built one was in second place.  The result was a quick coalescing of the membership and the development of a one-design rule which accepted only the Morgan plug related hulls.  The manufacturer of the Olympia was assigned status of an authorized manufacturer, and to this day, the hull manufactured by Hartman Fiberglass R/C is physically closer to the original Morgan plug than that of any current manufacturer.  The hull retains the fuller bow sections which were part of the original #2770 design.  Over the life of the class, additional manufacturers were authorized by the AMYA Class Secretary, and they came and went as such garage operations are likely to do.  The notable exceptions have been Hartman Fiberglass R/C, active since 1971, and Dumas Products, a first line model products company who has been a consistent producer and advertiser for many years.

EC-12M Manufacturers:

Buddy Black: 1968-1970 Bill Low: 1987-1991
Reynolds Manufacturing: 1968-1983 Puritan Yachts: 1992-1996
Carr's Boatyard: 1970-1973 Graves Little Boatyard: 1998- 2000
Model Yachts and Things: 1970-1978 Robin Yachts: 1980-1983, 1999-Present
Hartman Fiberglass R/C: 1971-Present Ozmun Design: 1986-2000
Leisure Products: 1972-1974 Sailcraft: 1988-1995
Treasure Tooling: 1975-1978 George  Ribeiro Products: 1998- 2000
Cork Sails: 1976-1980 Brawner Boats: 1999-2005
Dumas Products: 1976-2004 RMD Marine: 2005-Present
Hickman Marine: 1977-2005 Ludwig Enterprises: 2005-2009
Crump and Associates: 1977-1983 Blue Crab Yachts: 2006-Present
Bob's Boatyard: 1979-1981 CPM: 2010-Present
William Schell: 1983-1988  

   Through the 1970's the class rules were stable with one notable exception.  As originally promulgated, the beam of the hull was stated as a maximum measurement, but the location of the measuring point was not specified.  Experiments with different bow configurations were held in Florida resulting in a narrowing of the deck beam dimension in the forward part of the hull.  The experiments resulted in the gradual movement of the point of maximum beam aft.  About 1973, rule clarifications were accepted that provided for maximum deck beam measurements and tolerances at specific measurement stations.  The measurements and tolerances were selected to match the typical hulls being produced at the time, and established the primary control on hull shape as the Treasure Tooling Plug.  The Treasure Tooling is the point of departure for about half of the manufacturers today.  Thus, some present EC-12M's appear to vary in the deck shape significantly from the original plug.  Careful measurements were taken of the variations caused near the water line by this topside pinching.  The AMYA EC-12M Technical Committee could find no evidence the hull was distorted at the waterline. It was concluded that the basic underbody remained virtually unchanged.  Simply put, the influence of the skipper on the performance of the boat is so huge by comparison to slight variations in hull shape or sail plan configurations, that no one has been able to prove the pinched hulls were faster or slower than the traditional shape.  People often thought the early pinched hulls were faster, but that was later ascribed to the fact that the better skippers were more likely to get new boats and hence the skipper was the apparent cause of the performance increase.  As of this writing, the issue is of historical interest only.

   In 1979, the International Yacht Racing Union - Model Yacht Racing Division (IYRU-MYRD) accepted the EC-12M as the first international one-design class for model yacht racing.  In 1986 the IYRU-MYRD requested that rules for all international classes be rewritten in a consistent format, and an EC-12M subcommittee was formed from five countries known to sail the boat (USA, GB, KA, KZ, and KC).  A new more restrictive class rule was written for the "International" East Coast 12 Meter, as well as a constitution and by-laws.  However, the AMYA membership did not ratify the ICE-12M proposal  and compromise efforts also failed. The IYRU-MYRD then adopted the new ICE-12M as a new class in 1990, which lifted sanctioning of the AMYA EC-12M class.  Additional efforts to a compromise by a technical committee within the IEC-12M also failed.  In 1992 the IYRU-MYRD placed the IEC-12M class on a two-year probation with intention to remove sanctioning unless the issues are resolved.

   In the US, we have locally and nationally continued to race under the AMYA class rule through it all.

   The effort for an IEC-12M class included the creation of a new primary hull plug with the intention future hulls be built to a tighter tolerance.  Existing hulls were to be grandfathered into the new class.  In 1989 the IEC-12M technical committee selected the Hartman Fiberglass R/C plug as the basis of the new primary hull plug.  This being considered by the IEC-12M technical committee as the nearest existing hull to the original design the class is founded upon. This eventually became the plug the Puritan Yachts mold came from.  The name "Puritan" both suggests the strong resemblance to the original design and refers to the Edward Burgess designed Puritan, the 1885 America's Cup defender.  The IEC-12M plug is now in Australia.

   Tom Jordan somehow agreed to create this new IEC-12M plug.  In researching the plug, Tom reviewed the lines of Constellation, the Olin Stephen's 1964 America's Cup defender.  Among many characteristics shared by both hulls was the sharp angles or facets extending longitudinally around the keel bottom.  However, these were eased somewhat in the final Jordan plug to conform more with existing EC-12M's.  When efforts for an international organization stalled, Tom, as Puritan Yachts, submitted his hull to the AMYA and received approval after close scrutiny in 1992.  Prior to approval, the gunwale had to be lowered 1/4" at station 20, but otherwise it is a middle-of-the-road yacht relative to AMYA-approved yachts.  The newest AMYA-approved hull manufacturer, Puritan Yachts, was actually a chance result of efforts to make the EC-12M an international class.  Unfortunately, after only producing nearly thirty hulls, Tom Jordan and Puritan Yachts ceased production.  Tom has taken a breather from model yachts, and is pursuing other interests.  I hope my friend takes only a temporary break from model yachts.

   One result of the IEC-12M efforts was a tightening of the AMYA sail tolerances in 1992.  This was one area where consensus was reached between the two groups.  Because the racing is closer, there is general satisfaction with the standard or "A"-rig rule that eliminated significant roach area in the main. In 1993 the AMYA revised the requirements for the "B" and "C"-rigs closer to the IEC-12M.  Another by product of the IEC-12M influence is the 1995 AMYA rule revision to a standard plug for all new hulls, that brings the class closer to a true one-design.  The 1995 new standard class plug is based upon the middle-of-the-road Puritan.

   The conversion to the 1995 new standard class plug and the compliance with the existing EC12 Class Rule has been well accepted and new hull suppliers now meet the needs of all skippers, worldwide.  Since 2000, the class has seen greater growth as hulls, materials and building help has become readily available. The near future looks bright for EC12.