Originally with the D1, D2 and the D3 we placed the winch in front of the mast in a self draining winch bay. As time went buy I realized how important it is to be able to replace any faulty component of the boat quickly as it became very frustrating missing races in a regatta replacing winches or rudder components
With this in mind when designing the D 4 with a completely new deck layout. The winch is mounted directly in front of the main sheet post with the drum above deck. If anything happens to the winch lines it is very easy and quick to repair. The winch can be replace in minutes by just undoing two bolts that can be easily accessed through the hatch that is behind the main sheet post. There is another small hatch over the rudder servo that enables quick adjustment or replacement to rudder servo or rudder arms. Through the main hatch is where we access the battery stand that is placed at the bottom of the boat just aft of the center case on the starboard side. The battery holds in place with Velcro The corrector weight is same position on the port side. The receiver is held in place with Velcro under the deck on the port side of the main sheet post will the areal retained under the deck. We are finding there is no need to turn on and off batteries during a days racing as batteries now easily last the distance. Before rigging the mast we plug the batteries in and place the patches over the deck. Unless there is a fault in the system there is no reason to open the hatch in a days racing! Yes we have eliminated the need for a pot that always seem to leak
Up forward we decided to run a full length alloy track that enables multiple positions for jib swivel. Also the same track the jib sheet also can be lead to different positions. We have found this most helpful for trying different jib leach tension settings The aft end of this track the adjustable mast ram is positioned.This track acts as a reinforcement to the load from the rig tension on the deck and keeps everything perfectly in line
We decided to use the mast gate to ensure the mast is supported sideways at the lower part of the mast. This has a added benefit of not putting any unnecessary strain on the mast step if a stay accidentally comes adrift. There is enough room inside the mast step trunk to put the mast corrector weights on the outside of the mast.
The main sheet is not lead from a forward turning block but straight from the winch line attached as far aft as possible. This has proved to be very effective with no problems at all.
A bung hole is placed at deck level on starboard stern. This does not let much water in if the whole is not taped up. I always check for water after every race by just tipping the boat back. Always best to know if there is a water problem sooner than later