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 Post subject: 17 in heavy air
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 8:14 pm 
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Location: newark ca
I am thinking of getting a 17. I will be sailing in 15 to 20 knot winds with occasional gust to 25 and 2 to 3 foot chop. I was watching the 17 nationals last year and was impressed with the way they handled the SF Bay. I weigh 195, I am not sure if that is too big for the boat. Can 1 person step the mast on these?
In light say 5 to 10 knots conditions I might have a passaenager, no more than 175 lbs, would the boat tack with type of load

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 8:25 pm 
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Location: Santa Cruz
Hey SF Flyer. Give me a call and we'll get you dialed in. There are a few used 17's in the area and some active 17 sailors I'll hook you up with. We've also got a regatta coming up in your neck of the woods. Go here for the div3 schedule. www.hobie3.org Also check out Hobie Fleet 20 and Hobie Fleet 240 out of Santa Cruz. There's lots of Hobie Knowledge to tap into here in the Bay.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 5:05 am 
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At 195, you're not too heavy for the boat - in fact, you're in the 'power range' for the conditions you're talking about.

With a 175 lb passenger, you'll definitely notice the difference - the boat will be very sluggish and harder to tack. Not a big deal in lighter air. The hardest part about having two people on the boat is where the second one goes in a tack. There's not a whole lot of room under the boom. If the wind is light, it's better for them to go around the front of the mast.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 5:09 am 
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195lb is at the upper end of the racing range, but I'm 205 and I'm competetive. There are other guys that are bigger than me that can do well too. Big guys only really seem to suffer in about the 8 to 13 mph range. If the smaller guys can be on the wire and you can't, they'll walk away from you. If no one's on the wire, it's pretty equal and once you're solidly trapping, the speed is very similar. Of course if you're not looking to race, it's no big deal.

The 17 is a good boat to sail in a breeze, it's pretty easy. The wings give a lot of leverage. One person can step the mast. You use the main halyard to hold it up while you connect the bridle wires.

Everything I've heard says to stay away from two on the 17. I don't know, I've only ever single handed it. I'm sure it will move, but it might not be as much fun as with one person.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 7:52 pm 
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Location: newark ca
Thanks Guys

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 1:24 am 
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Mr. Bounds and others. This talk of weight for various boats has always both intrigued me and confused me. For me, most of the "ideal" weights have always seemed light to me with me being 6'5" and 240. But if I may ask, if I could purchace any hobie to be most competitive at this weight what boat would it be? Or, if it isn't to much to ask, what are the various "power ranges" for each hobie? I love the 16 but I know that my weight is likely not ideal for this particular boat. The fun I have on it greatly exceeds my concerns however, but if in the future I was to purchace another boat what would be the best one for someone in my weight range?
I apologize if posting under this topinc isn't appropriate, If it would be more fitting I would be glad to move it into the open forum.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 6:16 am 
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"Optimum Weight" depends on a lot of factors. I tend to think in terms of performance, since most of my time on the water is spent racing.

Even when racing, conditions (wind velocity, wave state) will further refine what is the optimal weight range. Which direction you are headed (upwind vs. downwind) matters, too. In the SF H-17 North Americans, I was extremely fast upwind (at 5'8" and 185#), but could just barely hold my own offwind against the lighter crews.

Light air and choppy conditions favor light crews. Heavy air and flat water favor heavier crews.

The minimum weights established in the class rules are set with an eye towards "what is the minimum weight required to right the boat in moderate conditions?"

The size of the boat matters, too. Larger boats tend to be more tolerant of extra weight because the crew weight is a lower percentage of the total boat weight and there's more reserve bouyancy.

For the various Hobie Cats that I have had experience with, here is what I consider to be the "optimum" weights for all around performance:

Hobie 14 (no minimum weight) - 150 to 175 lbs, although when the wind picks up, heavier crews have a distinct advantage.

Hobie 16 (285# min) - 285 to 300 lbs. The 16 is easily depowered, so unless the squirrels are flying out of the trees, the lighter crews will do better.

Hobie 17 (160# min) - 160 to 185. Very weight sensitive. Again, when the wind picks up, the heavier crews will be untouchable to weather.

Hobie 18 (285# min) - 285 to 325 lbs. Been a long time since I've been on an 18, but they are much more tolerant of weight.

Hobie Tiger (309# min) - probably the most weight tolerant, the Tiger will do well up to 360 lbs.

Hobie 20 (295# min) - Another weight tolerant boat, will do well up to about 350 lbs.

What to do if you're 6'5" / 240 on a 16? For just fooling around - nothing. The 16 will carry a lot of weight, but performance will be progressively degraded the more you get over 300 lbs. If I was that big and racing, I would have a child crewing for me (my daughter has crewed for me since she weighed about 55 lbs and we had to carry 50 lbs to make weight). Alternatively, you could carry the 45 lbs to make weight and sail singlehanded. You'd be killer in anything up to about 10 kts.

If you are trying to decide what boat to get, I would look at the 18 (lots of inexpensive used ones around), then the 20 (more expensive and much higher performance, also longer set-up time). As a last resort, I'd look at the Tiger. The Tiger is a great boat, but they are expensive to maintain in racing trim and take a long time (1+ hours) to set up off the trailer.

Again, I stress that my perspective comes from over 30 years of racing Hobie Cats. The boats will carry much more than what is "optimal" and the average Joe will never know the difference. He'll still have that ear-to-ear grin on his face when he hits the beach!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:07 am 
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Mr. Bounds,
Thank you for such a prompt and detailed reply. With 30 years of racing experience I would say that your opinion is quite valuable. Thank you for taking your time to share your experience on this topic. I found that very informative. I'm a bit heavier than I'd like to be right now at 240, but my body frame isn't going to let me get down to much less than 210 (my best guess from when I was in great shape back in high school). If I may ask just one more question about weight? When you mention that I could carry the extra 45 pounds and single hand on the 16, does that mean that I would have to gain that weight (let's hope not :( ) or does that mean I could litterally cary that weight on my person? Please forgive me if that is a dumb question, I'm not yet an active racer.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:41 am 
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"Mr. Bounds" was my father. :oops: Don't make me feel older that I already am. Most everbody on the forum knows me as "the other Matt" (not Matt Miller) - Hobie Hotline magazine editor and unofficial class historian.

When you "carry" weight to make minimum, the rules require (for obvious safety reasons) that it be firmly attached to the boat, not your person. When I carry weight when my daughter sails with me, I use barbell plates tied below the trampoline, right behind the mast.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 10:55 am 
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Thanks Matt, (the other one). Sorry, the Mr. thing has kind of been breed into me and I tend to use it until I'm told not to, it'll be Matt from now on. That's a cool thing to know about the weight. So I could show up to a race with enough weight to attach to the boat to make minimum and sail single handed and theoretically be competitive, although I'm sure my skills would indicate otherwise. Thanks again, this has been very informative. Happy Sailing.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 2:53 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 6:37 pm
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Location: Wrightsville Beach
James, I am currently dealing with this right now. I had no idea your supposed to sail with two people on a H16 or H18 when you race. For the Statue of Liberty they will let you singlehand and take an L4 penalty whatever that is. If you ever start singlehanded ocean sailing your weight would not be a problem,although sounds like you could drop a pound or two. The 18 would be a fun boat for you. :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 4:35 pm 
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Location: Tri-Cities, WA
sf flyer, I sail in the conditions you mention alot and found my H17Sport to be a great boat. Raising the mast solo is quite easy. I added a cleat on the side of the mast about 2 feet up from the base to help. Prior to stepping the mast, take the main halyard and attach it to one of the bow bridal cleats. Step the mast, pull in the slack on the main halyard and cleat if off to the mast cleat, then you can safely attach the forstay. The boat sails best solo (I weigh 220 lbs), but I add a second person (~110 lbs) when it is bolwing over 25 mph. I like the sport because of the jib and boomlet because it is much easier for 2 people when tacking. 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 7:00 pm 
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Location: NC
Genmar Star,
Yeah I could definately stand to loose a few, maybe had a few to many pig pickin's and oat soda's up there at ECU. It's one of many immediate goals. I love to single hand the 16, I'm sure the 18 is just as much, or more, fun to sail solo. As you know I'm looking for H16 hulls, but the more I think about the 18 I'm starting to think about selling off the boat and going in the market for one. But I haven't really given it too much thought. I'll have to meet you out there in Wrightsville for a ride on your 18 to help pursuade my judgement. :wink: I'm sort of in a state of limbo as to trying to decide exactly what to do. I'd really like to eventually start racing and that will certainly have some weight in whatever I end up doing. Again, thanks Matt for your advice and clarification.
I know it's early but best of luck to you out there for the Statue Race. Could a race be any cooler than that? What a concept.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:42 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 9:01 pm
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Location: newark ca
How long does it take to set a 17 up

Thanks

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2007 1:31 pm 
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Location: Tri-Cities, WA
sf flyer It takes me ~ 40 minutes alone from arrival to cast off and about the same to de-rig. 8)


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