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About ricwoz

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    Vancouver, WA on the Columbia River

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  1. ricwoz

    NACRA - finally!

    What a lovely place to sail and a really fantastic video. The first time I looked I thought your post was a still picture. The videography (via drone I assume) is really nice, and the music is a nice touch. Thanks for posting.
  2. ricwoz

    NACRA - finally!

    That's great to know. I owned a Nacra 5.2 throughout much of the 1990s and the 5.8 was the boat I aspired to upgrading to at the time. Prindle also had the 19 at that time, and were (I think) still a separate company. I've sailed on the 5.8 and it's a fantastic boat, for sure. I'm surprised that Nacra Australia still makes them, that's what I mean about things being different down there. The rest of the world are supplied by the folks in the Netherlands, and I am pretty sure they don't still make new 5.8's. The Infusion Mk. II for the F-18 class is pretty much the boat of that size we get in North America. Thanks for the Facebook suggestion, I'll follow up on that.
  3. ricwoz

    NACRA - finally!

    Feel free to add them. The NACRA offerings down under were a little different from ours up top, so I'm not familiar with those. I'm sure there are many additions that could be made to this, but I feel it's a good effort. The editors were big on references, and I'm pretty proud of how many I found including a couple from the New York Times, which helped get the article over the final hurdle "notability". I modeled it on the Hobie Cat article, which (as the editors pointed out) isn't an excuse for anything. The Hobie article really could use some help, too.
  4. ricwoz

    NACRA - finally!

    It took me over a year of working on this article and four attempts at submitting it to finally have it accepted by the "New Articles" editors at Wikipedia. It was a little frustrating at first, but in truth they were trying to keep the quality of Wikipedia up, which is a good thing. And, I'm not perfect, many of their suggestions were good ones. Anway, now it's here, so everyone who is knowledgeable on the topic can help improve it from here on out: NACRA (sailing) article in WIkipedia (English)
  5. ricwoz

    Hobie USA drops several catamarans.

    Interesting, that may change too, we have the foiling boats now, too, to think about. Not sure what version of the Nacra 17 will be used next year. I think they are mid-upgrade to foiling on that boat.
  6. ricwoz

    Hobie USA drops several catamarans.

    Weta = Wet, eh? Yes, those Mirage Drive boats and the tris have some really fanatic fans too, people buy one, then they buy another one for their wife .. Still, for a lot of people "Hobie Cat" is the generic name for a beach cat. It would be like if Kleenex got out of the tissue market. The US Multihull Championship is the Hobie Altar Cup, maybe they will sail it in Bravo's next? Actually, they have the list of boats to be used on the site: 2017 it was the Hobie 17 - 16 boats competed. 2018 - Nacra 17 2019 - Hobie 16 2020 - Weta
  7. ricwoz

    Hobie USA drops several catamarans.

    ARC / Supercat 17 These are only modestly updated from circa 1980 designs. They don't fit into F-18 category, and their next boat up in size is a full 21' footer, which looks to have been designed to the Worrel rule circa (when we also had the Hobie 21 and G-Cat 21 built to that rule).
  8. ricwoz

    Hobie USA drops several catamarans.

    Yes, given the ubiquity of containerized shipping there is no reason to have multiple factories for their boats, I get that. In fact the Australia set-up is a bit of an anachronism. I guess what is disapointing is that (apparently) the T-2 sold so poorly in the USA that it's gone from a regular product to a special order in only a year or two. The sad truth is that once you stop featuring these products, even on your own website, not very many people are going to even know that you can special order them. Google search "Hobie Wildcat" and you go to the Hobie Catamaran Page -- which doesn't have it. I do not know if it is a reflection of the overall market for beach cats in America, or just Hobie's declining fortune within that market. Cosair, the notch above Hobie seems to be doing real well. So does Weta - whose boat at about $15,000 is priced mid way between the biggest rotomolded Hobies and the Wildcat. For sure though we've lost almost all the manufacturers in America of this quintessentially American boat. NACRA is in Holland, Prindle is long gone, (NACRA may own the rights). G-Cat is out of production. I think ARC is still building the Roberts / Supercats.
  9. ricwoz

    Hobie USA drops several catamarans.

    I posted a short question over at the company forum page and got this response: Both the WildCat and the T2 are still offered to dealers. Just on a special order basis. We have not built fiberglass hulls in the USA for years. Australia builds their own H16s. France builds our 16s and all the rest of the glass products. Just more efficient use of each facility. We concentrate of rotomolding here in Oceanside... and build all of the aluminum, trampolines and sails for the US and Australian facilities. _________________Matt Miller Director of Parts and Accessory Sales Warranty and Technical Support Hobie Cat USA
  10. Interesting to see how Hobie has cut back their beach cat offerings. I was just looking at their web page (for USA) and the Wildcat is no longer listed as one of the boats they offer. https://www.hobie.com/about-us/ Also: the rotomolded catamaran line-up is also shrinking. The T2 is gone. We hardly knew you! That leaves the Hobie 16 as the only fiberglass boat they sell in the USA, and the Wave, Bravo and Getaway in the rotomolded range. The Europe site still shows both the WIldcat and the Tiger, as well as the T2. https://www.hobie.com/br/fr/ But then this is a big slimming down too, because last year they had the T1 (and maybe other plastic boats?) as well as some other fiberglass boats. So Europe has also seen a big range slimming effort. Maybe there is a larger market to sustain selling some of those boats indefinitely in Europe, or maybe they are just selling through the inventory and their line up will also soon be down to the three rotomoldeds and the 16. It's odd that Hobie doesn't even offer a F-18 boat here anymore, though they do not seem to have really ever caught on even as much as the Tiger, and the NACRA boats have always seemed to be the ones filling most of the slots in American regattas. I'm nostalgic enough to feel sort of sad. Back when I got into beach cats Hobie was still the most popular brand, by far. In fact of the 20 boats on the beach ours was the only NACRA, and their was one SuperCat, the rest were all Hobies. At that time they still made the 14, 17, 18 (all w/ variations) and the Miracle 20, along with the 16. How far the mighty have fallen.
  11. Thanks to everyone for the great discussion. I learned a lot and got some different opinions on things that were all really interesting. This is a good place, I'm still a relative newbie and I appreciate that everyone is so civil. It's fantastic that the question generated 32 replies. Here's a picture to help wind it down. Thanks again!
  12. The NACRA 17 and even the NACRA 15 have gone to foiling technology, but those are one-designs. Of course the A Cats have had it for a while and did a lot of the experimentation and development for foiling beach cats, so there is a precedent for an existing box-rule class to permit the use of foils. Will the F18 or F16 classes be adopting foiling technology? Or, will they be denying it to keep the large numbers of existing boats competitive? If they choose not to go there will we eventually see a new box-rule beachcat formula that is close in size to the 18, which remains popular for larger crews? Would adopting foiling effectively split the F18 class into two halves, the pre-foiling and post-foiling boats, and hurt people with older boats like Tigers that still want to race them? Just wondering what people who know more about this (like active F18 or F16 racers) think. How does the NACRA 17 do with heavier crews? The stated optimum crew weight (from sailing.org for the Mixed Multihull class) is just over 300lbs. 400lb crew seems like what F18 (and above) are built for.
  13. Yes, that's very close to my house, so I will definitely stop by. I have stopped by the rowing club yard a couple times, and there is a nice beach in the park near there, but I don't think you can launch boats from it. The shallow bottom is more off-putting than the muddy water, I guess if it's all mud it's not that bad. Hitting submerged rocks with daggerboards sucks. I guess the answer to my original question is: no, no one sails beachcats in the Columbia in Portland. Downriver 100 miles, yes. Upriver 50 miles, yes.
  14. Thanks! This was very helpful. I've driven through Skamokawa a few times, it looks like an interesting area. I also appreciate the link for the Hobie Class, Cascade Locks is pretty close.
  15. Finally got some vacation and took a day trip to Timberline Lodge to see Mt. Hood, then down the back way to Hood River. The wind was up and the kites were out! I haven't been there for a while, and it's gotten really huge. They have a bunch of ramps and a few people were doing spins off them, which was exciting. I didn't see one traditional sailboard out there. It seems like (at least at Hood River) the conversion is complete and everyone is doing the kites. Only one dinghy Enjoyed the drive back downriver to home, where there were the usual small number of sailboats out on the Columbia around the Interstate and Glenn Jackson bridges. I don't think I've yet seen any beach cats out there though. I know that there are some dinghy sailors going out on Vancouver Lake and on the Willamette, but the paddle boats seem to predominate for small craft. Does anyone day sail beachcats or other small multi-hulls in the Columbia? I know the currents are an issue, sometimes hitting 5 knots. Still, it eems a shame to leave all the wind to the kites. Is there a club or beach where people keep their boats, in the way that we used the beach in Santa Cruz for summer beachcat storage?