Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club members decided their youth members required a training class that would lead into the adult 21 Footer class then being raced nationally. A design concept was produced by one of the founding class members in 1922. Mr A C Barber, a Sydney naval architect, was commissioned to refine the hull design.
The class popularity spread throughout the nation and six states competed for the national title. In 1925 the then Brighton Yacht Club commissioned the construction of four 12 Foot Cadet Dinghies to be launched in conjunction with the club receiving its Royal Warrant, to then become the Royal Brighton Yacht Club. In 1927 the Governor-General of the day, Lord Stonehaven deeded the Stonehaven Cup, to be competed for as a friendly interstate competition for junior/youth sailors who are members of those clubs supporting the Australian 12 Foot Cadet Dinghy.
Dinghy Class and its National Competition.
Competition was fierce and the class rules had to be tightened. In 1949 the larger jib was reduced in its overlap to the current size. In 1951 a spinnaker was added to the rig thus modernizing the class and creating a new sailing challenge for the crews to deal with. In 1960 boat builders commenced using lighter timber such as Western Red Cedar for the construction of the dinghy producing lighter, faster hulls. Along with the lighter hull came the new polyester/dacron sail cloth providing better shape holding and further improving the function and handling of the dinghy.
In 1962 the Flag Officers of RBYC became the trustees of the Stonehaven Cup.
In 1974 Jack Gutierrez, an RBYC club member and boat builder, recognised the virtues of fibreglass construction materials and after much deliberation and difference of view it was decided to build a hull mould and produce the 12 Foot Cadet Dinghy in this new and maintenance-free ‘modern’ material. Other than a small ineffective glass fibre buoyancy tank being fitted in the bow the internal fit-out remained the same. Cadet crews were still required to bail their dinghies once swamped whilst other classes had begun installing buoyancy tanks to keep their dinghies afloat and to allow them to get back into the race. In the 1990s the class authority approved the use of aluminium spars.
In 1996 RBYC designed larger bow and stern buoyancy tanks which were approved for the 1998 Stonehaven Cup. In 1999 RBYC designed the bermudan rig to replace the traditional lugsail configuration. The bermudan rig was showcased and trialed in the 1999 Stonehaven Cup in Melbourne. In 2001 RBYC in conjunction with South Australia developed the side buoyancy tank concept and a prototype was produced using the RMYS Ayden C149 as the base model. A video of the trial was produced and sent to each state for their consideration. In 2002 RBYC installed side buoyancy tanks into the Little Leura C150 and the Dorothy C161
In 2003 Ari Sherr won the Stonehaven Cup in Melbourne using the RMYS bermudan rigged Catani C174. In 2004 the side buoyancy tank boats were trialed in the invitation races at the 2004 Stonehaven Cup in Largs Bay. In 2005 the Victorian and South Australian designed larger spinnakers, swing blade rudders and light-weight aluminium centreplates were approved by all states for Stonehaven Cup competition. In 2007 the bermudan rig was approved for optional use in Stonehaven Cup competition. In 2008 the side buoyancy tanks were approved by all states for optional use.
As a recognised one-design training class, the specifications of the Australian 12 Foot Cadet Dinghy are tightly controlled. This ensures competitive racing and controlled cost of ownership and maintenance. Close adherence to the specifications also allows parts and rigging to be interchanged in the unfortunate event of breakage or damage.
In a class of boat with such a heritage as the 12 Foot Cadet, the history of the development is interesting in its own right.
The bermudan rig was developed to simplify sail handling, and side buoyancy tanks have been added to increase safety in the event of a capsize.
Cadet Dinghy Specification
This is the written specification of the wooden and fibreglass hulls, the fittings, the lug rig including spars and rigging, the lugsail, the jib, and the spinnaker.
Plans specifications and rules V201 Specification 20090914 document control 20091013
Hull plan – Wooden Dinghy
This document is the plan for the wooden version of the hull, including the recommended “alternative method of centreplate case construction”.
Hull plan – Wooden dinghy V30 Plan 19630700 scanned 20090922 Document control 20091012
Details of Fittings Plan
This document contains plans for the centreplate, fixed blade rudder, bowsprit, tiller, horse, wooden lug rig mast, wooden lug rig boom, wooden gaff (lug spar), and wooden spinnaker pole.
Plan – Details of fittings V40 Document control 20091012
Bermudan Rig Plan
This document is the proposal for the bermudan rig approved by National Council in January 2004 for optional use in the Stonehaven Cup. It includes a full description of the bermudan mast, bermudan boom, and bermudan mainsail.
Proposed Bermudan rig plan V103 Proposal 20040814 document control 20091013
Sail plan – Lugsail and jib
This document is the plan for the lugsail and the jib.
Sail plan – Lugsail and jib V402 Document control 20091012
Sail Plan – Bermudan Mainsail
This document is the plan for the bermudan mainsail.
Sail plan – Bermudan mainsail V104 Plan 20090925 document control 20091012
Sail plan – Spinnaker
This document is the plan for the 2012 Spinnaker
Sail plan – Spinnaker V2.02 Plan 2012_11_3. document control 2012_11_30
Equipment Restrictions Applying to Stonehaven Cup Contests
This document specifies what equipment may, and may not, be used in the Stonehaven Cup.
Equipment restrictions applying to Stonehaven Cup contests V101Restrictions 20080813 document control 20091012
Construction and Maintenance Guides
As a guide to maintenance and even new construction, the following documents may be useful. These notes are not a manufacturing specification, but a guide as to what history and experience has shown to be effective methods of building and maintaining a 12 Foot Cadet Dinghy.
Cadet Dinghy Parts List
This document lists all the parts and supplies used in constructing, repairing and maintaining the Cadet fleet at RBYC.
Cadet Dinghy Parts List V126 List 20091006 document control 20091006
Cadet Dinghy Construction Notes
This document describes current construction standards and techniques used in repairing and maintaining the Cadet fleet at RBYC.
Construction notes V118 Notes 20091007 document control 20091007