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Best way to start catamaran sailing and teach my kids  Bottom

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  • dgoodwyn@ Andinista:

    Thank you for your thorough response. I do like speed - it is fun. My crew will be my wife and 2 kids (ages 3 and 6). I grew up sailing at that age and that set me up with a life long passion. My issue with a monohul is that outside of a sunfish or laser I don't know of any that I can beach launch.. where as the cats seem to be designed to do that with trailer additions like the beach trax that just make it easy. I find a sunfish or laser too small to effectively teach on.. I don't think a 420 or 470 as beach launchable.. am I wrong?

    The only issue I have with the SKEG hull would be it's ability to point into the wind.. I know that is an issue with cats in general and I feel that a SKEG will only amplifiy that issue - am I correct here?

    I love to plain and play the waves on monohulls.. but I'm willing to forgo that for a boat that I can launch anywhere.. form a beach or a campsite on a lake. Where I live in S. Louisiana there are almost no sailboat friendly launches and when we do go to the beach in the Florida Panhandle or on an annual trip to San Carlos mexico, a beach launchable option is all that I'll have.

    David


    420 and 470 can have a dolly and trailer that make them more beach launchable than a 16 or 18 ft catamaran in my opinion. But they are probably still a bit small for the family and maybe not stable enough for two kids the age or yours. A catamaran is more stable in light to moderate wind, just make sure to know how to avoid pitchpole.

    I googled a bit and found the Laser Bahia, that's the kind of monohull I had in mind, bigger than 470 but more family oriented. It's not clear to me that they are less beach launchable than a cat. Compare weights, find out if somebody makes a dolly and you should be fine. Compared to a cat, it´s probably easier to rig, bearing in mind that catamaran masts are longer.

    That said, I'm sure you would love to sail on N500 or N570. Just don't push the limits with the kids on board and enjoy singlehanding at warp speed... If you will be sailing with all the family most of the time, probably a Hobie Getaway is a safer bet.
  • Guess everyone's opinion of beach launch is different. Mine includes waves....Catamaran is best choice!!

    --
    Pete
    2001 NACRA 450 SOLD
    2000 NACRA 500
    DeLand, FL
    --
  • saltlife77Guess everyone's opinion of beach launch is different. Mine includes waves....Catamaran is best choice!!

    True. Maybe not for 3 years old kid though.
    If wind drops it becomes less manageable, make sure to consider that scenario. (I learned the hard way...)
  • I've had both the H16 and H18. For what you describe, I think the H16 would fit your needs and be way easier to rig and move around than the H18.

    Just one thing on the age of the kids.... I belong to a yacht club where I pay monthly dues to use the boats. I took my 3 and 5 year old grandkids and their parents out on a Catalina 27. The 3 year old was over it about 100 feet from the slip, and the 5 year old was ready to go home 15 minutes later, just as I cleared the break wall. We did encounter a sea lion ripping up a big fish for lunch, so that garnered some interest. Otherwise, I cut the sail short as they just were not into it at all. I loved boats as a kid. Today, there's a lot of competition with the sensory overload of the electronic toys and gadgets.

    Your mileage may vary greatly, and it will be on a faster boat. Just throwing it out there as my experience did not meet my expectations at all.

    --
    Bill Mattson
    Prindle 19 "Gelli Bean"
    Prindle 19 "Cat's Pajamas"
    --
  • The stability of a NACRA 5.7 / 570 compared to a Hobie or Prindle 16 should not be overlooked. The 5.7 can handle rougher water and higher winds, and still sail circles around the Hobie. There is no top-deck on a NACRA, so the hulls can be buried at speed and it will not pitchpole. Try that with a Hobie or Prindle, and you will end up upside-down. All three of these boats are considered skegg hulls and the lack of centerboards is great for on and off the beach. The 5.7 is outpointed by most monohulls but it doesn't give up much to the centerboard cats. I sail on the same points as a H18, and the two boats are competitive in performance to the point it mostly comes down to the person running the tiller and sail trim.

    Get beach wheels! The newer foam core boats have reinforced skegs, and apparently you can even get replaceable skegg shoes from NACRA, but moving a 5.7/570 on the beach is not fun without the wheels. There is no lip on top of the hulls to grab and lift, and you don't really want to pull this thing around by the dolphin striker.

    --
    Tom
    NACRA 5.7 (1984 Sail 181)
    Pennsylvania
    --
  • Thank you Tom!
  • I really like 420's and 470's, sailed them as a teen and launched them off the beach frequently as that was what was available. Centerboard was always an issue but we made do. They are at least 100lbs lighter so that's something. There is just no comparison on what the cat offers as far as space for a 16-18 foot boat. The 8ft beam(or near that) is useable space for almost 50% of the length of the boat, a 470 I think is 5 feet at midships and quickly tapers. Tramps are very relaxing when sailing and also great for lounging when you hit the beach.
  • QuoteTrue. Maybe not for 3 years old kid though.
    If wind drops it becomes less manageable, make sure to consider that scenario. (I learned the hard way...)

    Understood...Except I first started sailing/racing Catamaran's with my Dad at 3yrs old. Guess I am Biased!!

    --
    Pete
    2001 NACRA 450 SOLD
    2000 NACRA 500
    DeLand, FL
    --
  • No offence to the Hobies (I still own one) but when this discussion starts, few folks want to talk about the 'modern' boats out there today. My F16s weigh 245#s all up. Put that on wheels and you'll be the envy of the beach.

    --
    dk

    Blade F-16
    Blade F-16 (2nd One)
    Hobie Tiger
    Hobie 14
    Corsair F-242
    --
  • How are they for a cat newbie? How is their durability? Can they hit an oyster bar full speed and make it home? I always figured those issues plus price kept them off the rookie market.
  • A Hobie 16 is a proven design, is easy to rig, and can be cruised around as well as haul butt. I have had lots of weight on mine as far as people go, adults, kids, a mix of the two and just tamed the boat down a bit and cruised around. It is understandable that most will advise whatever boat they sail when asked the, "what is the best boat for me" question, and there is nothing wrong with that. I won't say that the H16 is the best choice for your needs, but it is a great boat, obviously, they've been making them since what, 1971? The H16 offers a little bit of a drier ride also since it has a raised trampoline, and if you avoid the mesh tramps and have a solid trampoline. Whatever cat you choose, of course you would want to learn to sail the boat and see how it handles before taking small children out on it for sure, but I'm sure you know that.
    Whatever you decide, Happy Sailing to ya!!!!

    --
    Marty
    1984 Hobie 16 Redline Yellow Nationals, "Yellow Fever"
    Opelika, Al / Lake Martin
    --
  • One of my F16s has Kevlar bottoms. I am not sure that means I can play demolition derby with it but neither boat seems any less capable than my H14. Before the rigging time comes up again, I can rig main only, main and jib or main, jib & spinnaker. Main only, my F16 is ready as fast as my H14. I will say sailing main with spinnaker and hiked out on the wire is a hoot. You won't get that on a H16 ... no offence; just a different type of cat sailing.

    --
    dk

    Blade F-16
    Blade F-16 (2nd One)
    Hobie Tiger
    Hobie 14
    Corsair F-242
    --
  • Biggest down side to the more modern hull design is once you sail one, a Hobie 16 feels like a bath tub.

    I think price plays a big part in it, a used F16 is probably 7k? Plus they don't sell super quick. You can get an H16 or H18 for 2k, decided you hate and want to take up bowling, and sell it your neighbor for a small loss. Or decided you love it, sell it for a small loss and get an F16. I think a lot of people buy cats that end up sitting in the driveway, better to find that out early and cheaply.
  • Quote I will say sailing main with spinnaker and hiked out on the wire is a hoot. You won't get that on a H16

    why won't he get do this on a h16?
    https://www.kosailing.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/650x/eb8afff2f4d04a80513eef251280a01f/h/1/h16spinnaker.jpg



    Edited by MN3 on Sep 05, 2018 - 05:45 PM.
  • Sure, price matters... and if you want to hook a new sailor, speed-to-rig matters almost as much as indestructability. Low price, high durability, and high simplicity all factor in.

    Once you get sailors 'into' the swing of things, put them on the wire on a more recently designed boat and you'll set that hook for life. My 2003 Tiger is a blast, but my 1982 H18 with upgraded sails is a whole lotta fun as well... complexity vs. simplicity is the biggest difference.

    Randii

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