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PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2009 8:27 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2007 12:08 am
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Location: Sunnyvale, CA
Given that the Bravo has a furling sail, how much wind would you feel comfortable sailing the boat in ?
Are the boat, hardware and furling system designed to handle 25+ knots ?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 12:27 am 
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Funny you should ask...

Today started with 5-10 fairly steady. Until as usual, I hit the aqua. Died flat with flys, as a squall line with lightning and booms moved near. Eventually, enough breeze to get back on sand as the lightning and rains arrived.

After watching the beautiful squall pass by (40 mph gusts reported), I made it back out. not much blow after the front passed. But then a few moments of probably steady 15. very nice. then the 30 mph stuff hit and i was downwind of home. After reefing and beating my way upwind as the waves rose to 1-3 breaking - finally bailed out on a friendly beach and walked the last 1/2 mile home.

Have to say, glad I was boom-less on this flight. If I had more foul weather time on board, perhaps i'd have fought it all the way. but at this point on my confidence curve, safe was fine.

Bravo vs Sunfish. Have to say, Ive never bailed out short of home on the heavier higher pointing SF. At this point, have to say the sf was much safer in heavy seas. The bravo rules in less than 20 imo. steady 15 is bliss.

Would enjoy hearing others high wind experiences..


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 9:34 am 
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Location: Dallas Texas
I would expect the Sunfish to point better, but the Bravo not handling rough seas as well has me baffled. How does the Bravo not handle rough conditions? This is the first I have heard about this. In the past have sail a Starfish which is very similar to the Sunfish, but not made any more. I took the Starfish out in lots of weather conditions, but it didn't handle ocean surf. I have read here that the Bravo can go the surf. How did rough seas affect the Bravo?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 9:58 am 
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sailorsloan wrote:
I would expect the Sunfish to point better, but the Bravo not handling rough seas as well has me baffled. How does the Bravo not handle rough conditions? This is the first I have heard about this. In the past have sail a Starfish which is very similar to the Sunfish, but not made any more. I took the Starfish out in lots of weather conditions, but it didn't handle ocean surf. I have read here that the Bravo can go the surf. How did rough seas affect the Bravo?


In this case, it was that the waves were very fresh, very steep, very breaking on top of the boat... And I had to travel direct into their path to be where Id hoped to end up. Also, I haven't mastered the art of tacking the bravo. seems I always have to jibe to make it about. The boat is so light that a strong headwind will stop the boat cold as it tries to cross the wind, not to mention the waves pushing back. The sf simply had more mass / momentum, and less windage. The waves if need be could pass over the sf where the bravo gets shoved around better. IMO, there is a time and place for both.

I'm sure with more mature rolling waves, all would be good.

For a 'real' surf cat. 16 or fx1... :-)

Finally, lest I give the wrong impression... I LOVE the Bravo!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 5:46 pm 
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Location: Dallas Texas
I used to own a Hobie 16 and took it out in the surf. The Bravo I think should handle the surf but slower getting out so will have to time the wave sets different than with a 16.
On the Sunfish in rough weather, didn't your cockpit fill up with water?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 6:28 pm 
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sailorsloan wrote:
I used to own a Hobie 16 and took it out in the surf. The Bravo I think should handle the surf but slower getting out so will have to time the wave sets different than with a 16.
On the Sunfish in rough weather, didn't your cockpit fill up with water?


Usually the deflector did a fine job. Other times, open the drain and out goes the water quickly.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2009 7:23 pm 
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Location: Sunnyvale, CA
I am considering a bravo for days when the wind is too strong for the 16, and I still want to go out solo, typically 20/25+ knots.
How far can I push the bravo ?

An alternative would be the Wave, but without the ability to reef or furl, I feel that it could still be overpowered at times for a lightweight sailor.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2009 2:21 pm 
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Location: Santa Clara, CA
I wound up in 20-25 kt. winds in San Francisco Bay. I had come out of the horseshoe-shaped Redwood City Estuary and was starting a two-mile downwind run down the bay to the other leg of the estuary. As I approached the bay, the wind got fierce, but I figured that since I could furl my sail as much as I wanted, I'd be fine. I furled about 3/4, but was unprepared for the wind waves, which consisted of about 3' high steep wind chop, threatening to capsize me. I was concerned that I'd be unable to right the boat in the heavy surf, and I was in a deserted part of the bay so there was nobody around to help if I needed it. I immediately tried to turn back for a quick tack back up and into the estuary, but as soon as I pointed away from perpendicular to the waves, the boat almost went over--I'm certain that the boat would have been unable to tack into such waves without continually capsizing. So all I could do was keep the boat perpendicular to the waves and continue downwind to the other leg of the estuary. It was treacherourous, but after about a half hour I made it okay. Maybe to an experienced sailor, this wouldn't have been a big deal, but to a relative newby (about forty sailing hours under my belt, including about 15 in my Bravo), I was at the limit of my abilities. So I guess my reply would be, if you're considering doing high winds in the ocean or large bay, where high chop can build up, the Bravo would be a handful, but on a lake, it'd be a blast!

--Bob

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2009 3:39 pm 
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Well, I can update my higher wind saga. It was a BLAST today. Winds 15-20 gusting to 25. The waves were such that the crests were about 15 ft apart and not breaking. about 2.5 3 ft . Wind was steady and cansistant shifting only now and then, not violently.

Learned some tricks. Ya really really have to hang your bottom out as far as ya can to gain leverage. Hanging on to the strap just with my upper feet. And weight balance fore and aft is critical. Ya really have to be active ballast to maximize the ride. Turning upwind was possible and not too difficult after I learned to come about easily from close hauled without giving full rudder which tends to stop the boat. Finally, on certain points of sail, the bravo will sail herself quite nicely. Very nice feeling to let the boat find her path. Learned to trust the boat more and be more subtle with the helm. Today was excellent!!! I tried out different points of reef and was able to control the power quite nicely. Have to be wearing a spring suite to be comfortable with the wet ride... :D


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 10, 2009 5:57 pm 
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Location: Lake Livingston, Texas
Quote:
on certain points of sail, the bravo will sail herself quite nicely


I've found that sweet spot a few times too. Really is a very well designed little cat!

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:41 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 11:34 am
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Location: Franklin Lakes, NJ
I have found that when tacking the boat the following has worked for me.
1. Moving the rudder slowly
2. Then shifting my weight to leeward once the boat is into the wind and pulling the sail in hard and quickly easing
3. Then depending on the wind speed, stay to leeward or move to windward.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 7:27 am 
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Looking forward to trying your suggestions; was struggling some last Sunday to consistently tack through breeze conditions. Was tacking back and forth across inter-coastal because wind was right down the waterway. First time in a good breeze, was a lot of fun. The boat is very forgiving, but seems like it will perform very well, under an experienced hand (e.g. sensitive to weight distribution fore and aft, you have to be quick on the mainsheet to keep her near flat, etc.).

Got myself into a couple of pickles after a series of failed tacks. But a couple of controlled (mostly) jibes got me back on track. I did discover the boat really heaves-to nicely, when I need to stop and let boat traffic pass bye. Cheers, Kevin.

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Lived aboard 30' S-2 Center Cockpit for 13 years (Milwaukee WI / Corpus Cristi TX / Miami Beach FL) about 12 years ago. Don't miss the maintenance, but miss the sailing - Just purchased Used Hobie-Bravo - WOW!


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