Sailing a Capri in the Red Sea - Egypt!!

Discussion in 'Capri/Catalina 14 Talk' started by Bond, Nov 17, 2011.

  1. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Hi everybody.

    I live in Cairo, Egypt and I have a weekend house on the beach on the red sea. It's a windy spot and I regularly windsurf there. I never sailed before but I'm already crazy about it and would love to buy a boat and start learning. Sailing is unfortunately not popular in Egypt and there is only one club that carries the Topper brand. I'm not very impressed. I have read a lot until I learnt about the Capri and read really a lot in this forum. I really like this boat and I'm currently investigating how I can get it picked up and shipped from the USA to Egypt. Which will probably cost me a lot but I'm willing to do it. I have a few questions:

    1. Anyone has any info or recommendation regarding shipping the boat overseas? Any recommended company to deal with? Any advice or input with regards to this?

    2. This will be my first boat and my first sailing experience. I will probably take friends, kids and family along but my guess is I will single handedly sail the boat most of the time. Is the Capri the right boat to start with? I plan to sail when the wind is low and I'm more interested in cruising and not necessarily racing.

    3. The boat will be stored right on the beach in front of my house. Is it easy to launch and beach? Easy to pull out on the trailer? Or Dolly? Alone or will I need four guys to pull out with me?

    4. What about spare parts and support considering it will be the only Capri in Egypt? Is it easy to buy all and any necessary spare part online?

    Appreciate any help as I'm in a real dilemma.

    Thanks
     
  2. Capri Joe

    Capri Joe Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Topper vs Capri 14.2

    The Topper series of boats are more in line with racing skiffs than the 14.2 but like the Topper the 14.2 is not a cruser/family boat. It sounds like a Catalina or Precision 18 is more in line with what you are looking for. The catch being that you plan to beach it. They're not really good beaching boats but if you plan to take your family out on the water they are better suited for it than the Topper. If beaching is important then you ought to look at a cat rig. I believe Topper also makes them.
     
  3. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thanks Joe for your reply. The Capri 18 or the Precision look really nice but too big for beaching and this is very important.

    A cat rig is like the Hobbie Cat for example? If yes then this is really what I don't want. I want a real boat experience. A drier ride. And more stable.

    Is the Capri 14.2 difficult to beach?

    Also if you're familiar with the Topper, what do you think of the Topaz Magno?
     
  4. dlikos

    dlikos New Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    I beach my 14.2 all the time.
     
  5. bernardd

    bernardd Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    I think it depends very much on what the beach is like. I grew up in southern England where we hauled boats across pebble beaches as kids. That was hard work.

    I've just bought a the Expo model Capri and started sailing in lakes in Texas which is a dream in comparison because you reverse the boat down a nice, smooth concrete ramp into the water on a trailer. Unhook it and you're pretty much ready to go. You can see the process on youtube videos like this one:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wH3DxLX5hJg

    If you beach is firm enough to take vehicles, slopes at the right angle and the waves aren't too big I guess you can do something similar.

    Going back to my homeland, the local fisherman used to have semi-permanent strips across the beach for the trailer wheels and a winch above the high water line to pull the boat across the beach (we had a near 20ft tidal range!). Maybe something like that would work for you?

    Apart from that I can move the Expo on its trailer on flat concrete but I'm not strong enough to pull it up the ramp by hand. All-up the boat and trailer probably weigh around 500 pounds ( 220 Kg ) I think. Empty weight is around 350 pounds (150 Kg) so you won't want to carry it too far but that's obviously an option for a group of you if the beach won't take a dolly and/or you have to get through the breakers.

    I'm not enough of an expert to recommend a type of boat but I find the Expo 14.2 nice and easy to rig, reasonably stable and fairly easy to handle provided you're positive when tacking.

    A final thought. If you have trouble getting a boat shipped from the US, do you have the opportunity to get one in Europe?

    Good luck,

    Bernard
     
  6. Capri Joe

    Capri Joe Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    14.2

    The 14.2 is safe to beach but difficult to hall onto a trailer from the beach. Since it uses a center board instead of a dagger board you stand a good chance of damaging the skirt if you drag it up the beach. Last, the 14.2 has a generous cockpit but it's really designed for a crew of two. You can carry more but only in light winds. As for stability your best bet is a Cat rig.
    I've seen Toppers in Crete but I've not sailed one. I looked at there web site and I think any of the dagger board designs will fit your needs. Again, the Cat rigs will be the most stable but least maneuverable.
     
  7. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank u all for your replies. It's really helpful.

    What about my other questions:

    Is it easy to learn sailing in a Capri?

    What about buying spare parts online, is it available? Good idea?

    Another option I'm looking at are the Swallow Boats from the UK. They sell kits for you to build at your home. I'm looking at either the Trouper 12 or the Storm 15. They are beautiful boats but I never did any wood work before but I'm sure I can find some help. Any thoughts here?
     
  8. bernardd

    bernardd Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    My guess is if you're a proficient windsrufer you won't find sailing too hard, but if you want to cut the risk, couldn't you find one of the Sharm el Sheikh (or similar) resorts that offers sailing as a recreation to give you some quick lessons before you invest 1,000's of dollars in a boat and shipping?

    Capri Joe : when you talk about "Cat rigs" am I right to think you're talking about a single sail monohull with the mast well forward, not a catamaran? Which is basically the Expo? If so, as I said earlier mine is good and stable but you've got to be positive when tacking. I've yet to really find out how close to the wind it will sail, but I suspect it isn't great. Is that what you were thinking about when you wrote "least maneuverable"?

    And yes, I agree about capacity. We had three adults in mine last weekend and, in light winds we weren't moving about a lot but I can easily see how we would have tripped over each other if we'd been trying to push it harder.
     
  9. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Very interesting. So basically the dream of taking the wife and two kids for a cruise in light wind is not realistic! :(

    I also agree Bernarrd that I should take a few sailing lessons before I decide on which boat, I will do that. Thank u.
     
  10. bernardd

    bernardd Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    It depends on how big the kids are!

    In your position I'd get some experience, hopefully not in the smallest, lightest boat(s) with tiny cockpits and then make my decision.

    FYI : if you can solve the logistics issues of getting them in the water, and you need more space, there are a couple of slightly bigger day sailors, one a cousin to the 14.2 from Catalina, and another from Hunter I believe. Beware the weight of them though!
     
  11. Capri Joe

    Capri Joe Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Cat Rigs

    Bernardd: there are lots of variations on the Cat Rig but you've got the just of it. They're forward mast with a single sail. There easy to sail but they don't point up as clean as a sloop.

    Bond: the capri 14.2 is easy to sail but you have to balance the boat by moving your crew to windward. If you are not well rehearsed you may be surprised as to how quick the boat will roll. It's a fun boat but not a cruser; you should expect to get wet.
     
  12. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Bernarrd: would the Topaz Magno be a good option to gain some experience in? My kids are 6 and 10 by the way.
     
  13. bernardd

    bernardd Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    I think it would be fine given that you probably don't have a lot of choice in your area. My suggestion was to do a few hours in a boat, probably with an instructor at the outset, and much sure you can handle it, but above all that you ENJOY it - it's all a waste of time unless that magic quotient is there.

    If that's all good, then start looking for a boat based on what you've experienced. To be honest the pictures on the Topper web site with four people in a Magno look a bit artificial to me - models do that because they're paid to but I don't think it would be the fun they're trying to portray.

    It seems to me that you're a bit caught in hoping to find a boat that's big enough for four, one presumably soon to be a hulking teenager, that's still small enough to launch from an unprepared beach. Incidentally I'd be wary of the weights in the Topper pages - they seem to be for the empty hull yet the mast and sails weigh a bit.

    Good luck with the lessons - I assume they're pretty much year round in the Red Sea?

    Bernard
     
  14. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thanks Bernarrd for your answers, you got it right. But to be perfectly honest with you my guess is a lot of the times it will be either just me or myself and my daughter who is 10. So add this to the equation.

    To Capri Joe, Bernarrd and all:

    I would like to take your opinion on two boats of the Swallow Boats class; The Trouper 12 and the Storm 15. Please check them out at this website: www.swallowboats.co.uk
    Let me know what you think of these boats from your experience and also in line with my needs..

    Thanks a lot.
     
  15. Capri Joe

    Capri Joe Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Trouper 12 and the Storm 15

    Pros: Both boats are very nice looking and roomy boats, Easy to sail, and safe for the family.
    Cons: Both boats are high maintenance boats. You will have to balance the time you spend sailing these boats with the time you spend maintaining them. As for the sailing experience these two boats will sail nicely but they wont be real exciting to sail.

    The Trouper 12 is the easiest to sail and least cost to maintain due to the way it's rigged. In comparison to the Topper's you were looking at these boats won’t be as much fun to sail but they will surely be dryer.

    I have to agree with Barnarrd. You should take some lessons and go for a test sail before you buy any boat.
     
  16. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thanks Capri Joe. Very informative.

    What kind of maintenance should I expect to do on annual basis?

    Do you really think the Trouper is roomy?

    What do you think of buying the kit and building it myself and with the help of a carpenter that should be easy and cheap to do in Egypt.
     
  17. woodbark

    woodbark Member

    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Bond, it's obvious you have now been bitten by the sailing bug and especially by the capri bug like everyone on this forum. If you have'nt already called them, I would suggest you give Catalina a call and see what they have to say about shipping a boat to you.

    On the other hand, building a boat from plans or kit could be very rewarding. For instance, take a look at these guys:

    https://www.boatdesigns.com/15-Glen-L-15-sloop/products/443/
     
  18. Capri Joe

    Capri Joe Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Glen-L 15

    These are nice looking boats! No doubt it would be the bell of the ball on most lakes and well deserving of the pride you would garner in building it. Everybody loves a wood boat but few love them enough to maintain them. I love the simplicity of my Capri. I spend more time sailing it than I do on cleaning a maintenance. I previously owned a Catalina 25 with a good bit of teak and windows. It took a lot of time at the dock for maintenance and cleaning and after 5 years I sold it and started looking for a capri.
     
  19. woodbark

    woodbark Member

    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    18

    I totally concur, originally I was all stoked about building, fortunately for me, I am a great procrastinator which gave me time to come to my senses, I wouldn't change my C14.2 for any reason. It's easy to handle in and out of the water, I love the self bailing for clean up and 4 on board has never been a problem; if anything, it's less work to sail with the extra ballast.
     
  20. Bond

    Bond Member

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Thank u Woodbark, thank you Capri Joe.

    That's is also what I believed initially. That it would be ok to sail with the C 14.2 having the family on board specially that I will probably do this when it's light wind and not most of the sailing time. I will probably be alone or with my 10 year old daughter or with one of my friends most of the time.

    What do you guys think of the Expo then, is it worth consideration or it's not a very successful model?

    By the way, yesterday I took my first sailing lesson in the river Nile :). I think i will enjoy this hobby. The wind was very light though. We used a wooden boat also called The Nile a very old model done in Egypt by the British long time ago. The wooden boats really don't look nice if theybare not in tip top shape. I agree. And the sun in Egypt is strong.
     

Share This Page