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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:34 pm 
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My experience with the Bravo is all of 5 minutes looking at one on a beach in Mexico. I have a 16 an 18 and a 20 with fairly extensive racing and fun sailing.

I'm working with my yacht club to develop a youth sailing/ sailing education program and have a huge issue with water access. We have moored boats, and a launch crane and a beach that we launch our cats from. The "normal" sailing program tends to have Optis, Lasers or other small dinghies that are a big difficult to get on and off the beach(12'' surf). We also are in a somewhat protected bay, but the wind can pick up from 10-25knts pretty quickly at the opening.

I like the idea of the remolded cat with a seemingly easy to furl main and single board and rudder system. My main concerns with the boat is how much or how little weight it can sail with. How easily a beginner, like an 8 year old can sail it or can an adult and an 8 year old sail it without being overloaded. I think the catamaran aspect can make our beach launch easier and help get kids excited about sailing in our area. I am looking at a young beginner Opti class on a nearby lake, an intermediate youth Bravo/Laser Class on lake or beach, and a more advanced H16 or...? class for those that want to keep going. This is the brainstorming period, so any thoughts or comments would be appreciated.

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Fleet 259, Central Coast CA
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 7:18 am 
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moncasta wrote:
My experience with the Bravo is all of 5 minutes looking at one on a beach in Mexico. I have a 16 an 18 and a 20 with fairly extensive racing and fun sailing.

I'm working with my yacht club to develop a youth sailing/ sailing education program and have a huge issue with water access. We have moored boats, and a launch crane and a beach that we launch our cats from. The "normal" sailing program tends to have Optis, Lasers or other small dinghies that are a big difficult to get on and off the beach(12'' surf). We also are in a somewhat protected bay, but the wind can pick up from 10-25knts pretty quickly at the opening.

I like the idea of the remolded cat with a seemingly easy to furl main and single board and rudder system. My main concerns with the boat is how much or how little weight it can sail with. How easily a beginner, like an 8 year old can sail it or can an adult and an 8 year old sail it without being overloaded. I think the catamaran aspect can make our beach launch easier and help get kids excited about sailing in our area. I am looking at a young beginner Opti class on a nearby lake, an intermediate youth Bravo/Laser Class on lake or beach, and a more advanced H16 or...? class for those that want to keep going. This is the brainstorming period, so any thoughts or comments would be appreciated.


I have gone through exactly the same thought process. Ended up buying 3 new Hobie 16's to start my program.

This is my reasoning FWIW.
Kids learn to sail in Opti's ages 8-15. There is no reason to add a competing boat that targets this age/size group.
The post Opti options are: Laser or Windsurfer for single handed, Club 420 for double handed. There is no multihull path offered in most sailing programs.
The cost of a Laser, Bic Techno, RSX, and C420 is a limiting factor on any choice for a post Opti boat.
In round numbers it is over $10,000 USD
The youth sailors that are looking to keep sailing after Opti's are used to racing. They are used to low tech (most Opti's don't even have a compass). IMO any mulit-hull class must be an active racing class. It must also be price competitive with the other post Opti options.
IMO The choice for a youth boat must be a Hobie 16. The boat is weight sensitive and ideal for a youth crew. Here in Mexico very few of the sailors will be 6'1" and 185# so not competitive in Std Laser, and Radial is a struggle. They tend to be small for RSX also. The C420 is a pretty good choice for small crews.
What the H16 has going for it over any of the other choices is that is a much more versatile boat. Two youth sailing families can share a boat. The youth sailors can take their parents out sailing. The family can enjoy the boat when the young guns are not racing. This is not possible with a Laser, Windsurfer, or C420.
In North America the PanAM Games include the Hobie 16. This provides an International goal that no other Multi can offer.
In our program many of the parents are not sailors and a Hobie 16 just might become an active adult class at any club that includes them in a junior program. Watching your youth sailors showing off and teaching their parents to sail is a powerful and moving experience.

IMO the Bravo with a single board and rudder is not enough like a performance multi to teach skills that are different from a mono. The only plus over a H16 is that it is rotomolded hull. Any program that uses high end Opti's and Lasers has already inculded how to sail a fiberglass boat without damage, so the RM construction is less of a plus in that context.

I think you are on the right track trying to get a multi into your club's program. I think the Bravo would not be the best choice.

Cheers,
Randy
Vallarta Yacht Club, H16 Flota Bahia de Banderas, Nayarit Mexico

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-2013 H16 #1`13780
-2014 Getaway w/wings,spinnaker,& trapeze


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:11 am 
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Randy,
The consideration for the Bravo is somewhat in place of the opti. We have no dock at the club. The H16 would be up at the higher end, but I fear that I do not have an entry boat. The club does not currently have any program. Part of my hope is that kids could take their parents out on a Bravo, or some of our aging members that always wanted to try a cat out, could sail the bravo without the setup and complexity of an H16. There is also the consideration of storage and setup. An H16 mast may be a bit much for the kids to setup... the bravo looked like a much closer option to some of the Monos.

I'd like to work in some Optis so that the kids could participate in racing with neighboring clubs, or the lake if we get enough water to let boats back on it. The primary consideration is a boat that can stand up to abuse and be beach launchable. That is our primary water access at the moment.

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Tom
Fleet 259, Central Coast CA
H18 ('81)
H18 ('85)
H20 ('97)
H18 ('78)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:30 am 
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moncasta wrote:
Randy,
The consideration for the Bravo is somewhat in place of the opti. We have no dock at the club. The H16 would be up at the higher end, but I fear that I do not have an entry boat. The club does not currently have any program. Part of my hope is that kids could take their parents out on a Bravo, or some of our aging members that always wanted to try a cat out, could sail the bravo without the setup and complexity of an H16. There is also the consideration of storage and setup. An H16 mast may be a bit much for the kids to setup... the bravo looked like a much closer option to some of the Monos.

I'd like to work in some Optis so that the kids could participate in racing with neighboring clubs, or the lake if we get enough water to let boats back on it. The primary consideration is a boat that can stand up to abuse and be beach launchable. That is our primary water access at the moment.


Sorry, I missed that you don't have an existing Opti program. I'd talk with the other local clubs to get an Opti program started. The kids get used to using launching dollies right away and they get the benefit of sailing with other clubs right away. We've found that the kids want almost equal portions of food/dancing/social and sailing. The parents want too much sailing.

There are some resonably priced "Optis" out of China. They are too heavy to be competitive with a good newer Opti but they are tough and great for first timer 'learn to sail' programs. We bought 6 or 8 of these to use as club trainers since very few parents can afford to buy their kid a new boat.

A Bravo might work for what you want. I would find a complete used boat and see what the response is. Having people excited and having fun sailing is the most important part of a club sailing program IMO. So if a Bravo works as an entry to get people eithered and ready to join your club and into the sailing lifestyle go for it.

Cheers,
Randy

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Sail More. Tinker Less. Enjoy a Hobie Day.
-2013 H16 #1`13780
-2014 Getaway w/wings,spinnaker,& trapeze


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 12:14 pm 
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I've had comments from the laser competitors that they cannot stand getting on and off the beach, which has been my concern with optis or lasers for the program.

I'm in talks with our closest neighbor that has an active opti and day sailor fleet. My thought is that I'll have more adults to begin with, then gradually build up the youth group.

Getting one in to test will be the best way to find out for sure. I'm trying to pick everyone's brain before I bring a plan to the port or invest any cash into this project. The food/social/dancing comment is something I've been wondering about. Any thoughts on appropriate events that have worked well? I remember a camping excursion when I was in a program awhile back.

Tom

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Tom
Fleet 259, Central Coast CA
H18 ('81)
H18 ('85)
H20 ('97)
H18 ('78)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 7:51 pm 
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moncasta wrote:
Getting one in to test will be the best way to find out for sure. I'm trying to pick everyone's brain before I bring a plan to the port or invest any cash into this project. The food/social/dancing comment is something I've been wondering about. Any thoughts on appropriate events that have worked well? I remember a camping excursion when I was in a program awhile back.

Tom

In the club Opti fleets I know there are a few sailors that really want to excel at racing, a few more that are driven by parents that want them to excel and the majority that sail because someone made it fun for them. You need to be that guy ... the fun guy.

The 8-to puberty kids are different from the puberty to 15 and aged out of Optis. We have made the mistake of ignoring this reality and catering to parents. Have activities that the under and over puberty sailors will enjoy. A general rule is if the activity is too loud and uses music you don't like the kids will love it. Trampolines and swimming pools are cross over activities that both groups like.

Food ... twice as much as you think. Kid stuff, not what the parents want you to believe their kids eat at home.

If you can get a few of the juniors involved in planning after sailing activities all you have to do is listen. Every time we have a group of kids in the club they use the club computers to play SailX http://www.sailx.com/ Keeping the girls sailing after they discover boys is one of the biggest challenges. Youngish hunky coaches help with this.

Cheers,
Randy

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Sail More. Tinker Less. Enjoy a Hobie Day.
-2013 H16 #1`13780
-2014 Getaway w/wings,spinnaker,& trapeze


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 8:52 pm 
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If you want to get your kids involved with SailX, let me know as I'm a moderator on SailX.

Among other things, if your club has the interest, we can set up a private racing field for your club. Advantage to your kids is they can beat and bang about as much as they like and the moderators don't care. (What you do in your private fleet is your problem.) We had a Opti regatta for Argentina where the Racing Rules of Sailing were not a major feature, but they all had fun. Racing in the main field is more regulated and the bumping and banging that the younger kids like isn't allowed and some of them have problems with dealing with the maturity that's expected of them.

Best of luck,

Jim Clark-Dawe


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