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Old 01-05-2014, 11:17   #1
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First Time on a Sailboat!

And yes, it was fun !!!

Newbie here wanting to learn to sail so went to a very friendly sailing association race. Most boats were 25 to 27'. Anyway - here are 1st time impressions.

I was really surprised on the agility of these boats as they could turn on a dime. Also the fiberglass gets slippery when wet in the rain. It made it difficult to move about when the boat was really heeling.

Lol - was surprised how fast the boat moved when the wind was blowing and how slow it moved when the wind died down.

Also the continued adjustments of the sails.

This boat had a hand held rudder which seemed to me to have some play to it.

Anyway - I am on my way to learning !!! I am excited.

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Old 01-05-2014, 14:44   #2
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From one novice to another, Welcome Aboard!
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Old 01-05-2014, 15:05   #3
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Re: 1st time on a sailboat !!!

Yes indeed there sure is a lot of 'play' in the hand tiller, and sail adjustment is the key to winning races when similar boats are likely to perform alike each other! What type of boat were you on? Those 20-27 ft range boats are fast, fun, and can turn real well just as you say.

Happy to hear you enjoyed it so much!! I'll be taking a couple first-timers on a boat in a couple of weeks, hoping for similar reactions
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Old 01-05-2014, 19:18   #4
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

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Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
And yes, it was fun !!!

Newbie here wanting to learn to sail so went to a very friendly sailing association race. Most boats were 25 to 27'. Anyway - here are 1st time impressions.

I was really surprised on the agility of these boats as they could turn on a dime. Also the fiberglass gets slippery when wet in the rain. It made it difficult to move about when the boat was really heeling.

Lol - was surprised how fast the boat moved when the wind was blowing and how slow it moved when the wind died down.

Also the continued adjustments of the sails.

This boat had a hand held rudder which seemed to me to have some play to it.

Anyway - I am on my way to learning !!! I am excited.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
Good for you!. It appears you've learned a lot for your first time sailing. Another little lesson is that when you said rudder you meant tiller. Tiller is the long stick thing you move to move the rudder. As you gain in experience you'll love to learn all the new terms.

There should not be too much play in the tiller/rudder/pintles/gudgeons connection. Whatever play should be pointed out to the captain so he or she can tighten it up. The hardest thing to tighten up in that combination is the pintles and gudgeons where the rudder is attached to the boat unless the rudder is inboard then there is another more serious fix.

Good luck in your many new opportunities.
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Old 02-05-2014, 02:11   #5
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

If the boat is that slippery that you can't move about well in the rain, something should be done about it. It really is a very simple thing to do and it improves safety onboard more than any other thing. Don't accept slippery decks!!

Glad you enjoyed it - you're doomed now....!


Onno
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Old 02-05-2014, 12:06   #6
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

ANd it just gets better the more you do it.

Good Luck, you've just been bitten by the bug.
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Old 02-05-2014, 13:53   #7
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

To add - I was on a 25' O'Day. This was on a small 3,300 acre inland lake in central Ohio. The lake freezes on cold winters so all the boats come out of the water in the fall. Several of the sailors had small 25' boats on this lake and a larger boat at Lake Erie. We are 2 hours from Lake Erie.

Seems there are about 3 basic moves to sailing that you do over and over to change the direction of the boat. I will join this club and try to learn much more this summer.
There is a nack to knowing what to do and when and also learning how all the hardware works. Getting the 'nack' is what I would like to understand. The boats would get close to each other, especially around the turn markers. This was the 1st time this season the group was out so they were saying they were a bit rusty.

Oh - the gizmos, a whisper bar? To hold the jib away from the boat in such a way to catch as much of the slight breeze as possible. And a gizmo extension to attach to the tiller so you could sit on one of the back seats and steer the boat.

I imagine the bigger the boat the more gizmos that are needed...

I saw a lot of 25' and 26' O'Days, Hunters, Catalina's and even a Beneteau.
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Old 02-05-2014, 15:52   #8
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

tuffr2
Not here to correct but got a chuckle over the term whisper bar?
Sounds like you have the right attitude and would be welcome anytime.
The Pessimist complains about the wind.
The Optimist expects the wind to change.
A Leader adjusts the sails.
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Old 03-05-2014, 07:54   #9
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

Ugh - whisper bar....I mean whisker pole....LOL

Also was surprised it was not easy to see all sails and the tell tails depending on the sail configuration. And also - it took two people to sail this little boat because one person was stuck working the tiller while another configured the sails according to the tiller person. You could not work the tiller (hold it in place) and reach any of the lines for the sails.
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Old 03-05-2014, 08:04   #10
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

tuffr, you're not the first to call it a whisper something or other. I have friends who started saying that in 1983 and they still do! No one had the cohones to correct them!

Here's an idea: buy a used copy of Sailing for Dummies from Amazon. It's a very, very good little book.

Welcome and good luck. The more you learn from both being on the water and reading, the sooner you'll get more confortable with the "stuff."
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Old 08-05-2014, 14:20   #11
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

On these small 26' tiller controlled sailboats seems in am always stepping on the lines. The mainsail boom lines especially.

Also I am finding it difficult to see what shape the jib is in because it's view is blocked by the mainsail.

Are these two issue the same on bigger 35' to 40' boats?

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Old 08-05-2014, 16:47   #12
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

My last boat, a Cal 2-27 took me 3 years of club racing to figure out and get set up the way it worked for me. After that time I could set, fly and retrieve the spinnaker while single handing during a race with multiple sets and yes it had a tiller and that made it easier also.

The boat I currently have is similar in it floats on the water and that's about it. It takes a minimum of three crew to fly the spinnaker and so far almost all the sets and takedowns have been really ugly. Most of the time when I or crew try's to pull a line, someone's standing on it. First is figuring out who, them to GET THEM TO MOVE. during the few races I've done on this one every time I turn around my cockpit is full of tangled lines, I'm constantly making things ship-shape as we go as well as asking crew to do the same. It's kinda like your house,, clean as you go. I know I'm not happy with how the running rigging is set up but don't have the picture in my mind clear enough yet to re-rig.

As I said before, sounds like you have the right attitude. Give it time and you'll figure it out. Mot importantly, have fun!
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Old 08-05-2014, 18:02   #13
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

The mainsheet can be tucked into a small bag sewn for that purpose. You can add a tiller extension to the tiller so that you can sit on the windward (high side) and see past the mainsail and look at the telltales on the jib. The two maneuvers you need to add to your repertoire are tacking and jibing. Look them up and you'll see how that works. You'll also need to know the rules of the road. Racing rules and then just plain old boating sailing rules.

There are a lot of things to learn and if you are really interested in learning more there are a bunch of books in the public library on the subject. "Start Sailing Right!" is another one to consider. There are basic sailing classes you might want to take and even a Coast Guard Auxiliary Class of Safe Boating would be helpful.

Good luck in your new pursuit.
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Old 08-05-2014, 18:32   #14
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

Thanks - it is I feel clumsy when I never considered myself to be clumsy. I played sports that required coordination and was good at those sports is why I never consider myself clumsy.

But on these boats I am clumsy. I had a tiller extension in one hand and another on the mainsail rope that was in the brake. If the boat started to heel too much I would set the brake off and release about 1' or 2' of rope on the mainsail. That or use the tiller to change direction of the vs the wind to upright the boat some. We were not racing so no one liked excessive heeling of the boat including me...ugh.

I tacked with someone else working the jib lines with me working the tiller and mainsail. But even with someone helping with the jib tacking felt really clumsy.

Oh - forgot to mention the wind shifted from the south then from the west, then back from the south. Tacking without enough speed one time for sure.

But lines under foot and visibility just add to the clumsy feeling.

Can't wait to next time !!!!





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Old 08-05-2014, 18:41   #15
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Re: First Time on a Sailboat!

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Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
I imagine the bigger the boat the more gizmos that are needed...
Heck, that's the fun part. Once you get into a big enough boat, even your gizmos have gizmos.
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