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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:45 pm 
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I've been in and out of these forums for a few years now. Every summer I get the itch to get into sailing.

2 years ago I bought a Nacra. It was my first boat. It seemed massive to me and I was kinda scared of it. I only took it out once because I had so much trouble stepping the mast. I sold the boat for more than I had in it.

Last year, I bought a junk Sunfish and sailed on it for a few weekends. I had no means of getting the thing to the beach and I had to rely on my dad..which was really not the easiest thing, to get it down there. Winter came too soon and I again sold it.

Now I have a vehicle that I can tow with. I really really want to get out in that water. I've been checking craigslist in my two bit town for months and all I see are weekend cruisers and hobie 16s. I really wanted to get a hobie 14 or a wave honestly...but even up to 8 hours away I'm not seeing much. The cost of the wave is a deterrent too.

So after talking to a few new friends who sailed a lot in their day...They'd always flip the boat on it's side, mast up, then flip the boat back, took them no time at all..easy as pie. So I'm in for a bigger boat I think.

Is a H16 a bad choice for a total newb like myself to start with? I'm going to be solo 90% of the time. Most people that'd ever be on it would be 4.

Thank you in advance.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:59 pm 
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Go for it, I sail mine solo all the time. Depending on your size you may want to look into some help with the righting gear. A water ballast bag might be in order.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2011 11:45 pm 
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Thanks for the reply...And why the heck are Sunfish so expensive?! There are 4 h16s within 2 hrs of me that are under 600. All the Sunfish I'm finding are 5-600 without a trailer.

I haven't seen the boats, but most of the ads read well.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 12:47 am 
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Location: Sydney, Australia
I don't' have experience with H16 but I own a H14 and I'd say it also depends on how much wind you get in your area.

I couldn't imagine soloing a H16 where I live, I'm a small/light guy and we get a lot of wind here. Most summers it's at least 15 knots by midday and will often get windier as the day progresses. The 14 takes off like a rocket and I'm glad it's not a 16 with just me on it.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 1:36 pm 
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I'm fairly light myself, 175lbs. Winds here average 20-35 mph. It's rare, but sometimes they get down into the 5-15mph range. It's ALWAYS windy here. Maybe I should avoid it then and continue my search for something different. Just so hard to find any boats here.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:34 pm 
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Location: Oakland, CA
1. You'll need extra weight to right the boat yourself.
2. Average wind is 20-35? That's pretty high, and a wide range. Check the wind speed again, since you don't want to solo sail with your weight in those kind of winds because you will flip.
3. Be wary of a $600 Hobie 16. It probably needs a lot of work to make it safe to sail.

If the winds are more like 15 then get a 16 and have fun.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:07 am 
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Location: Hanover, PA
With your weight and if indeed the avg winds are what you mentioned, you may be quite happy with a 14 or 14T if you can find one. I recently sold mine but absolutely loved it when the wind was blowing. I sold because I played a constant balancing game with it since I was too heavy for it at 230 lbs. With a 16, you would have to have a righting bag to get it righted.

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... History: '84 H16 Tsunami Nationals, '84 H16 Yellow Nationals, '84 Hobie 14T


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 5:39 pm 
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Location: Greenville SC
I would go for the 16, go without a jib for the time being until your ready.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:04 pm 
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It's pretty damn windy here. All this week it's averaged low 20s and it's approaching August already, May-June are the windier months of the summer.

Aside from the speed worries, is there anything else I need to consider? I'm not the most muscular person. I'm 175lbs, but I am 6'3" so there's not much bulk there. My buddy assures me it's no big deal to flip the boat on its side to seat the mast. I'd need to get a set of cat trax to get it to the water, a good 100 yard treck to deep enough water for it to float in(stupid bays).

I wish they had made the Wave back in the 70's or 80's so I could find a cheap used one now. Or hell, even if they were more plentiful I'd consider trying to pick one up.

I'd look for a 14, but they're sooo rare. I'd find one 8 hours away make all the trip arrangements get halfway there and find it sold, lol.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 6:15 am 
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Post the state or general area where you are located. May be some fleets or associations nearby.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 8:43 am 
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I'm in way south Tx, about 45min from South Padre Island.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:34 am 
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Location: Oshkosh, WI
I solo my 16 most the time, but I found a dock spot, so I only step the mast 2 times a year.. up then down.

I'm a big guy though.. 6'1" 270... so I should be able to right the boat by myself, but I will admit, in 5+ years on my 16, I've never capsized it... I wuss out and sheet out when it gets sketchy! :roll: The lake I sail in is very shallow, so I don't want to know how difficult it might be to unstick a turtled boat from the muck.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 11:47 am 
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Location: Oakland, CA
Barren wrote:
I've never capsized it... I wuss out and sheet out when it gets sketchy!
You need to go over because you're missing a lot of the fun of sailing these boats. Put a milk jug on the main halyard and sheet in! With your weight, just try not to land on your sail.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:24 pm 
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Location: Tri-Cities, WA
Gdbyrd - if you have high winds mostly and plan to solo, you should look into getting a H17 or H17Sport. I also sail in mostly higher winds (15 - 30) solo. Did it for 20 years on a H16 then switched to a H17Sport and glad I did. The H17 is a much better boat for high wind sailing than the H16. You can push it much harder in a blow with less potential for a pitch-pole. In either case, at your weight, you will need a righting system of some sort (bag, power pole, shroud extenders, etc). :wink:


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 5:51 pm 
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I just don't think I could go with a bigger boat. I think if anything I'd go with something smaller!

I talked to a lady at work and just mentioned it in passing I had been checking craigslist religiously for a sailboat. She says one of her friends has an old Hobie 14 he'd probably sell. So I'm going to look into that too.


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