I'm reaching out to you sailors that have made this transition or know of someone who has. I could look through all the info that Weta has on line but I really want some unbiased opinions. I'm in my 70's and 150 lbs. and most of my sailing is without the weight benefit of crew. I really like sailing alone and there have been many days that I've had to pack it in early because I couldn't find anyone to go with me. In 2018 I downsized from a 5.7 to a 5.0. I love my little G-Cat but it too is getting to be a bit much. It's not trailering and stepping the mast, it's more the narrow wind range that I'm now comfortable in. When whitecaps start, I have to think about coming in. I would feel safer in the Weta because I could push it harder and if I did pitch-pole it, I could right it by myself. The other thing is that unless I'm on the wire, the G-Cat is terribly uncomfortable now and it looks like the Weta would be better because of the different sitting position. There's one other really important thing: Access to launch areas. Unless you are a member of a sailing club there's only one place in the entire City of Sarasota where you can beach launch. Because of the Weta's light weight and easy to use built in dolly more places would be available to me. So I would be trading a little performance for convenience and safety. Please share your thoughts.
I haven't sailed one, but I've raced along with some (even hit one!) at the Juana Good Time Regatta in Navarre Beach FL: http://www.juanaspagodas.com/regattanews.htm There are usually a bunch there....seems like an organized group with some dealer or club support. I actually thought they came from down your way to promote the product. Might want to check with the Weta folks.....could be worth a trip to the panhandle in September.
It also looks like there are several owners in your area.....maybe you could track 'em down and get a ride!
My answer is yes.
There are a few in my area, and when they first appeared the west coast dealer was offering demo rides on them. Fun little boat even in some windy conditions.
Keep an eye out here for used boats
New boats run about $16K to $18K depending on the dealer and options, and you still need to get a trailer if you planning to travel.
With that, a Weta is something I am considering as a next boat.
Wetas are great. I own one - split with 2 more friends - and we love it. Forgiving, yet it performs really well.
There's a good community, posting in wetaforums.com and sailing anarchy, there's a helpful guide on buying 2nd hand wetas. There's mods and upgrades for ease of rigging and of use.
And although it's a hiking boat, you don't really have to hike. With a good hand at the helm you can de-power very effectively up and downwind. My son is super light and can drive it anywhere solo even in a blow..
There's a bunch in FL (2 in Miami, one is mine...), and regattas happen in FL about once a year I think. I haven't been to any though.
Weta => no drama and was purchased for my present and future elderly sailing. No back issues managing setup and getting the mast up/down noting my seriously surgically repaired back was not your typical back surgery. It's nice not wearing a harness. Equipped my trailer with a nice winch and I think I could launch/retrieve the boat nearly anywhere with the integrated beach dolly. Seems to have nice community ala old Hobie communities albeit much much smaller community than 70s/80s Hobie communities.
No Drama Example:
Following a race several weeks ago a squall blew in with gusts 40+. Carnage in the fleet but getting Weta back to dock was manageable although there is also no concern about flipping Weta due to righting mechanism (note boat is still very new to me). My H17 would have been wrong side up which is never fun in those conditions - :)
ex-F25C x2 w/last one having F85SR floats
I just sold my Weta a few weeks ago. It was an excellent boat for winds 12+ knots, but it was hard to get moving below that due to the stiffness of the Mylar sail. You can have too much weight with two adults. It's very difficult to capsize even when the leeward ama gets submerged--just sit way back and let the main hull plane as it was designed to do. For older sailors or those with limited mobility, the Weta is one of the best multi-hulls you can buy. A self-tacking jib was just put in the newest models, and you can purchase a 6 m2 "storm sail", or a furling jib if you really want to go underpowered on a windy day. Unfortunately, the prices have increased such that you're looking at $22k with tax for a new one. Used Wetas are in high demand so expect them to hold their value. If you buy a new one, I would recommend the Trailex aluminum trailer. Other boats to consider for mobility problems are the Windrider trimaran and the Hobie Island trimaran.
The Weta is a delicate boat, however. Thin fiberglass over foam core construction means you should have beach or mud landings, rather than concrete ramps. The carbon fiber tiller extensions, lock-down rods, and spinnaker boom are easily broken if you're not careful.
High Point, NC
Hobie FX One Catamaran
Hobie Tandem Island Trimaran
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