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Old 03-12-2013, 18:00   #1
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Hobie to Learn With?

It's going to be a couple of years until I get the youngest in College and we can go cruising. I know boats, been on and around them most of my life, but they have always been power boats. I don't see being able to cruise long term in a power boat, just way too much fuel, so sailing makes more sense, problem is I have never sailed anything in my life, read about it etc., but never done it. Have played with either buying the biggest boat I can trailer, or if I have to keep it in a slip, I want something big enough to weekend in, say 30+ ft., but that's almost a cruising boat to say nothing of the marina expenses etc.
But since a kid when they were first invented, I have lusted for a Hobie Cat, I've looked and used ones aren't that expensive, are of course trailerable. I'm no kid anymore, but I assume you would really learn sailing if you got to where you could master a Hobie Cat? Again assuming if I bought it right, took good care of it and made some improvements, I could maybe sell it for about what I paid for it when it became time to get a bigger boat.
So is sailing basically sailing? That is the skills I would learn from the Hobie would transfer to a bigger boat? I believe i have a mentor, the new Aeronautical Engineer we hired breathes, eats and apparently lives to sail, if I had a boat, I don't think I would have to twist his arm too hard to teach me, pretty much any boat
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:06   #2
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

Sure your sailing skills would transfer from a Hobie to most other sailboats. I think on a catamaran you would especially learn the difference between true wind and apparent wind, and also when to release the mainsheet in a hurry.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:27   #3
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

Hobie's are fun, cheap and the knowledge gained is definitely transferable to monohulls and big cats. The big difference is you will get wet, all the time. If your water is cold most of the time, that may be an issue.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:57   #4
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I have owned and sailed many smaller boats. I have owned both Hobies and Mosquitos, both in different rigs and I have owned different sized hobie cats. I say all this to add some perspective the following comments.

The Hobies were all terrific boats and thoroughly deserve their popularity but I also found them the least rewarding of all the boats. By this I mean that they were super easy to sail but never seemed to challenge me the way the mozzies did. They would point as well as you could ask and would cope with being overpowered really well but I never seemed to come back from a day of sailing feeling the way I did with the mozzie which could be a stroppy handful or some of the small monohulls I have sailed which really threw down the gauntlet from time to time.

In all of this I rarely raced so the challenges were purely personal.

Roll the clock forward 20 years and I find that I miss the feedback and rewards of small boat sailing and have found I need the assistance of CF members to get the best from our Swanson. So I wonder whether you might gain more from some other small boat that rewards and punishes the skipper more from time to time.

Just my odd thoughts and I'm not saying I would not jump at the chance of a spin on a Hobie 18 tomorrow if I could.

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Old 03-12-2013, 19:43   #5
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

A Hobie Cat is a different kind of sailing. You have to force it through a tack by first falling off to get some more speed, then back wind the jib as you go through the eye of the wind, fall off again, get speed up, then hang on for a great ride. I think it is a great second boat, after learning the feel of wind and water on a boat that puts you more in touch with the basic elements. Anything like a sunfish, laser, beetle cat, catalina 22 allows you to get the feel of sailing, and all these boats, if maintained should return close to what you paid for them. Then go for a Hobie, and sail something that makes it's own apparent wind, and pretend you are sailing on the newest of America's Cup boats.
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Old 03-12-2013, 19:54   #6
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Learned to sail on hobie cats. Mostly on hobie 18s, but I've sailed them all. I've been sailing now for 30 years and raced all sorts of boats. I currently own a bene floating Winnebago. Funny how things change. The one boat I find myself looking at time and time again is a f18 or nacra 17. Miss a high performance cat.

That said, of all the boats I've sailed and owned, the hobie 18 was probably the most fun. It was strong, fast enough, easy to sail, and cheap.

The skills I learned from sailing cats downwind translated into a great deal of success in monohull racing.
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Old 03-12-2013, 21:59   #7
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

If you got a lazy 10 grand to invest, you could look at one of these new:

RS Vision - Range - RS Sailing

Great Learn To Sail boats.
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Old 04-12-2013, 05:54   #8
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

Really looking for a used boat that I can use as a stepping stone.
I will sail in the Gulf coast of Fl. almost certainly St. Andrews bay in Panama City as that's where I currently keep my fishing / dive center console now, so cold water shouldn't be an issue.
Don't plan on having a big Cat one day, I think I want a steel hulled, full Keel cutter with a pilot house as my cruiser, of course that may change, but pretty sure I don't want a Cat.

So if I go monohull for a training boat, I want to pretty much maximize size wise what can be trailered. I have a one ton truck that pulls a 15,000 lb RV with no issues. That way maybe I can take the wife with us, maybe even overnight anchored out? I'm trying to not have to pay slip fees as I assume that's $200 or $300 a month?
Recommendations for a good trailerable monohull?
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:06   #9
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

I learned to sail on a Hobie 16. I owned the boat for more than 25 years, and it was my favorite boat to sail, bar none. It doesn't matter that it's a catamaran and you'll be buying a keel boat. They sail differently, but the skills you'll gain on the Hobie will be invaluable.
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:19   #10
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

I have owed a Hobie continuously since 1972. Currently have a 21 and a 16 in the Bahamas. That said, they are super fun but very specialized. You could spend less money on something like a Catalina 22 and have learn more that would transfer to a cruising boat. The basic basics are there but high performance cats are out on the branch of the sailing learning tree.
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:39   #11
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

Hobies are big fun, especially if you're a go-for-it sort of person and live near windy flat water.

But if cruising a monohull is your ultimate goal, you might get more enjoyment and use out of a trailerable micro-cruiser like ours (19') , Precision 21, the aforementioned Catalina 22, etc. These are cheap to buy used (eg often same or cheaper than a 16' Hobie), and usually come with a small outboard, a head, etc. They are easy and reasonably fun to sail, cheap to maintain, and sufficient living space for a couple to do a few nights out in... longer if you can get to a marina every few days. Bonus - you can trailer to areas that would take weeks to get to in a bigger boat... or inland lakes that the big ones can't reach by water. We try somewhere new every year.

[caveat - if you're a motorboat guy cos you love the speed, and the idea of never going faster than 5 or 6 kt makes your teeth itch, a Hobie will make you happier than a small displacement hull]

I've heard that small trailerable cruisers are popular on the Gulf coast, and with their retracting keels, they can be launched and beached about anywhere.

We just finished season #8 with our little boat. Still alot of fun for tiny $$.
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:05   #12
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Re: Hobie to learn with?

Quote:
Originally Posted by keepondancin View Post
A Hobie Cat is a different kind of sailing. You have to force it through a tack by first falling off to get some more speed, then back wind the jib as you go through the eye of the wind, fall off again, get speed up, then hang on for a great ride.
Not sure if this is just my experience, but if you're using a newer Hobie, the (very flat) dacron/mylar sails, sheeted tight (as it would be if you're close-hauled) can act as a brake when you're tacking, keeping you from getting through the wind. I suggest loosening the main sheet as you pull the tiller and then resheeting once you're through the wind. Might be a bit easier than the above. This wasn't an issue on our 1970-era Hobie with baggier sails, but when we got a 2004 17' (before Sandy caused a tree to fall on it), took me a bit of time to learn this one.

Old hobies are fantastic and can be had for cheap and are so light weight I can move ours with just myself and a pair of cat tracks. I grew up sailing them but agree with previous posters though that getting a 22' keel boat may put you in better stead if you intend to cruise a mono. I didn't have any experience with engines, water systems, etc. after moving up and all of those are useful skills to develop before cruising! Old cats will set you back about a grand (with a trailer), old monos like 22' catalinas can be had sometimes for free or a little bit more than an old Hobie.
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Old 04-12-2013, 15:01   #13
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I can only find 2 Catalina 22's W/trailer for sale in FL, GA, AL. Both want $4,200. Is this a good price? If I'm willing to spend a little more to get a larger trailerable boat are there any? After I get through this years property taxes, I could spend up to 10K max in Feb., March time frame early next year if I have to, don't want to of course if I can get what I want for less.
I know a Hobie and a Weekender sized monohull are pretty much opposites, but the theory is either get something fun for the kids and I to have a blast day sailing in the bay, or get something that the wife and I could possibly overnight on.
The major thing is getting the wife to look at this as something she may want to participate in, so I have to make it very friendly for her, take it easy, not be n a hurry, no goals, have a motel room rented etc. Try to make it fun, not stress or work. So that is the logic of the big difference in boat types.
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Old 04-12-2013, 15:55   #14
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Re: Hobie to Learn With?

Just because larger monohulls can be trailered, dont mistake that they're easy to get onto the trailer and de-rigged....or vise versa. Imho the cat 22 has got the most going for it based on what you're describing. The hobie is less fun for someone who doesnt like being sprayed and wet all the time.
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Old 04-12-2013, 16:22   #15
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Just because larger monohulls can be trailered, dont mistake that they're easy to get onto the trailer and de-rigged
Good point, seeing as how it's so easy for a powerboat, I had assumed it wasn't that hard on a sailboat
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