Looking for information to get started with sails.

Discussion in 'Sailing Talk' started by UrbanSage, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. UrbanSage

    UrbanSage New Member

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    Hello,

    I would very much like to start sailing again.
    Back from age 8 - 14 I sailed the optimist and I have since done a bit of sailing on a 47' Ketch.

    This was when I lived in Denmark where I was born.
    About seven years ago I moved to the states, living now in South Dakota.
    I would like to start sailing again, and I would like to either start sailing a single person or a two person with my wife. If the two person can be handled by one person, so much the better.

    My experience with various models are fairly limited having only really sailed the optimist and what I knew as a "Europa" dinghy.

    I found the Sunfish to look like what could be a great man/boat relationship. And I found the International 470 to look very interesting for my wife and me. This was one day worth of searching and by no means set in stone. I found the 470 to be very difficult to locate used equipment for and that may be less than ideal as a beginner.

    What I hope you can help me with is guiding me in a good direction as far as boat models. The thrill of being lifted out of the water by the wind while sitting on the edge of the boat is what I fondly recall so I would enjoy something fast.

    I would also appreciate being guided towards study material.
    It has been 15 years or so since I sailed daily/weekly and back then my vocabulary was developed in danish, so I am starting all over again. Books or anything are great! I don't mind studying hard.

    I hope I can get some pointers.
    Thanks
    Nick
     
  2. Wayne

    Wayne Member Emeritus

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    South Dakota is not an easy place to find sailboats or parts for sailboats. You may need to travel to a neighboring state to find what you want.

    The Sunfish is a well made boat. It sails best with one person and can hold two, but the space is small. If you are looking for a used boat, you might want to consider a larger style for two person comfort:

    Lido-14 … http://www.sailingtexas.com/cboats99lido.html

    Capri-14.2 … http://www.sailingtexas.com/scapri142137.html

    Hobie One-14 … http://www.sailingtexas.com/svagabond14105.html

    American-14 … http://www.sailingtexas.com/cboats99american146.html

    Koralle … http://www.sailingtexas.com/skorallejra.html


    More examples … http://www.sailingtexas.com/cboats99.html


    The Handbook of Sailing ” by Bob Bond is a good reference. The book covers small boat sailing fundamentals very well.

    Something to consider when looking for a boat. Wider boats and boats with a squared bottom (hard chine), like the Optimist, are more stable and easier to learn. Narrow length to width ratio, round hull boats like the Europa dinghy are faster, but take more skill to control.
     
  3. Merrily

    Merrily Administrator Staff Member

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    Nick,
    Don't really have advice for you, but feel the need to comment. From Denmark to South Dakota? Good Lord! Why? BTW, your English is fantastic.
     
  4. UrbanSage

    UrbanSage New Member

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    Thank you for the information.
    South Dakota is indeed a bit of a tough state to sail in, but with some patience and willingness I see myself hauling a trailer to the river/lake next spring.
    My long term plan involves a larger sailboat and a house by the ocean. Short term it involves getting familiar with the water and wind again.
    I had the thought of buying two Sunfish dinghies so we each can get familiar with sailing, but I do think my interest is (at least at this point in time) stronger than my wife's.
    Through your links I was able to locate a seemingly decent/good International 470 with trailer for about $1,000.00
    I find that incredible reasonable even if I have to drive it home from Texas!
    But I imagine a single Sunfish brought home from the Great Lakes or similar will be just as much fun.
    I do miss the Europa dinghy, at the time in my early teens it felt like flying.

    Denmark to South Dakota, yes, I think it is a first. Or a close second, I did once bump into an old lady who had migrated here back in the late 40's. She is the only Dane I have seen here.
    How did I get here? Well, I married a girl from here :) What other reason can there be for something so irrational?
     
  5. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    The 470 is an Olympic class; not a beginners boat. It has a trapeze and a spinnaker; it's seen very rarely in the US. If your spouse is athletic and doesn't mind to get wet (a lot), you could consider that boat. But, as Wayne pointed out, there are better choices.
     
  6. UrbanSage

    UrbanSage New Member

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    Well, I am personally of the opinion that the best way to learn how to ski is to start down the black slope. That being said, I am entirely unsure about what boat is ideal for us. This is the first place I have asked. I don't know a single local who enjoys sails and any contacts I may have had in the sailing community are long lost :)

    My wife is in good shape just like myself and we can manage a frequent bath.

    I do however not see Wayne pointing out anything about the 470, positive or negative.
    In fact he doesn't mention the boat even once :)

    I am very open to advice, but I appreciate being pointed in the right direction as opposed to being told roads I shouldn't take.
    I am very curious about what the "better choices" are and if you are willing to share I will have a great place to begin my search!
     
  7. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    So many boats; so little time...

    http://forums.sailinganarchy.com/index.php?showtopic=89938

    and Wayne provided a few more links earlier.
     
  8. UrbanSage

    UrbanSage New Member

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    That C-15 looks very nice. I had not seen it prior to your link.
    Thank you very much, it looks like a very nice boat.
     
  9. arm

    arm arm

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    Hola.

    You may want to consider the windmill. I have no idea if there are any near you but...the windmill was designed by Clark Mills, the optimist designer. It is a two person boat, no trapeze, just main and jib with a pole for the downwind runs. They are fast, fun and very affordable, plane easily and weigh under 200 pounds. Check out their web site www.windmillclass.org I have a windmill and I love sailing her.

    best of luck

    Antolin
     

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