Rule Interpretation RI-02-04

RI-02-04
FORWARD AND BACKWARD COMPATIBILITY TO STANDARD SPECS (2002-02-12)
Q1: Rules 1.3 and 5.1 refer to "standard specifications published by J Boats, Inc." and "standard factory supplied furnishings and equipment" and generally prohibit any change unless otherwise permitted by the class rules.

(1) If specifications or standard furnishings or equipment change after a boat is originally launched, is it permissible to make the same changes to the boat?

(2) Is it permissible to change a boat from its standard specs in a manner that makes it conform to specifications in effect for boats that were launched previously? For example, is it permissible to change cleats on the bow and stern such that they conform to the cleat arrangements on earlier boats (early boats had no stern cleats and only one bow cleat)?

A1: The "standard specifications" and "standard factory supplied furnishings and equipment" referred to in the class rules are generally those in effect at the time a particular boat is launched. On the other hand, the Technical Committee has in the past permitted the jib tracks on the early boats (build nos 1-72) to be moved to the location at which they are installed on all later boats. See RI 99-14. This was done to further the one design nature of the class and to rectify an error in the production process. The Technical Committee believes it is desirable to permit owners to upgrade furnishings and equipment in order to maintain the value of their boats as TPI makes production changes. For example, if owners want to replace the old-style pulpit with the newer, safer model, they should be permitted to do so. Therefore, the answer to Question (1) is YES. On the other hand, the Technical Committee sees no reason why owners would want to go back to prior specifications ” other than to achieve a perceived performance advantage. It does not seem consistent with the recreational nature of the boat to permit such a modification. Therefore, the answer to question (2) is NO.

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