I took my newly acquired 17 for a sail yesterday and it was not pretty. I am 230 and my brother is 250 and we went sailing off of atlantic city. I used to sail a 14 but have been off the water for 15 years. The sea was calm and the wind was light at 6 to 10 miles per hour. To make a long story short I got the boat in irons and couldn't get out for love nor money. A frustrating hour+. I look at the bottom of the mast and see it has swiveled to the starboard side and appears stuck. The stern of the boat was low in the water to submerged. Swallowing my pride, I accepted the assistance of a passing motor boat
and he towed me about. The wind caught the sail and "snap" the mast finally came unstuck.
We limped back to shore without ever generating any real speed and the boat felt like I was sailing it in mash potatoes. Upon arrival at shore I emptied the hulls and found a significant amount of water in the starboard hull. I never had a problem with my 14 getting so badly stuck in irons. It was frustrating and embarrassing and borderline risky.
So, my question(s)
1) Was it my lack of experience?
2) Was it the mast being stuck?
3) Too much weight from two big guys and a hull full of water?
4) All of the above?
After reading the forum today it appears the 17's are known for some of these issues. I bought it because I thought it would be easier to teach my kids how to sail without a jib and I liked the wings. Now I am not sure what to think. Thanks for reading, responding and I wish you many days of fair winds, fair skies and great memories.