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First dinghy after years of keelboats


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Hello all!

I’m getting the itch to learn more about dinghy sailing.. My wife and I are young, athletic, and have experience sailing j22s, Rhodes 19s, and some larger boats (30-40+ ft)

We’ve had a lot of fun recently in the J22 & are craving something a bit more exciting and athletic feeling as I know a dinghy would offer. I once sailed a 420, which seemed quite small for me (I’m 6ft3), but still a ton of fun.

We have a pretty solid understanding of all basic sailing principals and are confident enough to take out boats in more serious blows..no spinnaker or racing experience till now though...

Now living right next to the water in Rhode Island, we’re anxious to buy a dinghy that we could learn more technique on and would eventually  allow us to work our way up to local racing. 

I’m looking to you all for recommendations on what dinghy would be a good place for us to start and really appreciate any feedback you might be willing to offer. 
 

Have seen a bunch of stuff for sale locally from 505s to 420s to lasers, etc...

 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

RA

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Do you want to sail with your wife (a double handed boat) or alongside your wife (two single handers)?

Beyond that, the old adage is join a club, then pick your boat. In short, sail what others are sailing unless there's a very good reason not to.

Lasers as single handers, a 505 or 470 (a big brother to the 420, which I agree is too small for you) as a double are not bad starting points if you want something local. But one issue with a single trapeze boat is you really want the heavier, taller person on the wire for race success.

Frankly, if you are young and athletic, a twin wire gennaker skiff would be much more fun again, but the US seems to be lacking those. A 49erFX might be possible (your wife might find a full 49er too hard to handle the spinnaker and main on). If that sounds silly, I run a training group where I teach adults who have never sailed before (mainly women between 30 and 40 years old, and many quite light) how to crew such boats. Fifteen minute shore drill and they are out on the water, on trapeze, playing the main and setting and playing the gennaker [ see the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Mr-Bond-The-Ballina-Skiff-Sail-Training-Group-110226546310465 to see how it works ]. Clearly the students have a skipper who knows the boat and can partly compensate for their errors. So if you went this path, expect a few (actually a lot of)capsizes initially, or see if someone else can show you the ropes first.

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505 is active east coast and the Newport fleet is gaining a bit of steam at this point--it has always been here but good timing for you). Or if you want two boats and even more athletics, get two canoes. Also active in Rhode Island. (I sail both so I am biased haha).

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58 minutes ago, rabranovic said:

Hello all!

I’m getting the itch to learn more about dinghy sailing.. My wife and I are young, athletic, and have experience sailing j22s, Rhodes 19s, and some larger boats (30-40+ ft)

We’ve had a lot of fun recently in the J22 & are craving something a bit more exciting and athletic feeling as I know a dinghy would offer. I once sailed a 420, which seemed quite small for me (I’m 6ft3), but still a ton of fun.

We have a pretty solid understanding of all basic sailing principals and are confident enough to take out boats in more serious blows..no spinnaker or racing experience till now though...

Now living right next to the water in Rhode Island, we’re anxious to buy a dinghy that we could learn more technique on and would eventually  allow us to work our way up to local racing. 

I’m looking to you all for recommendations on what dinghy would be a good place for us to start and really appreciate any feedback you might be willing to offer. 
 

Have seen a bunch of stuff for sale locally from 505s to 420s to lasers, etc...

 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

RA

 

You can only "work your way up to local racing" if you have a boat that they race locally. Not trying to be snarky, this point seems to elude many. I spent much of my life racing small-ish one-designs, and some of the best times I've ever had have been with my wife as crew. Details: we raced a Lightning, a JY-15, and Johnson 18, and a Buccaneer. We also raced keelboats with others along but the best is just us two. We also double-handed a Santana 23 many times in all kinds of weather.

After most of five decades doing this and similar stupid boat tricks, I have reached the point where I don't give a damn what other people with bad taste and poor judgement sail, I only want to sail a boat that is intelligently designed, well built, and offers a lot of 'jump' for the PITA it inflicts. Maybe that's old age sneaking up on me.

420s are for kids.

5O5s are awesome boat but they are difficult to sail well and they can be very VERY fussy about rigging. They are the ultimate aficionado's boat, for people hwo are not only very skilled at sailing but who are consumed with esoterica of adjustment, tuning, and aero/hydrodynamic finagling. One that is sound but not fancy will be lots of fun to sail but not competitive.

Is there a class of JY-15 or Vanguard 15s near you? Those are great boats with some power but also simple and easy to sail.

The suggestion that you might enjoy two singlehanders has some merit. Give it serious consideration.

Meanwhile, find out what classes are within your operating range (however far you are or are not willing to drive).

FB- Doug

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Without looking on Craigslist, I don't know what's available in the RI area - but this method works: Turn up to local clubs, talk to locals, and see what they race there. (I'm not suggesting that you have to race, more about racing later). You can also see up close what you are getting into, how easy (or hard) boats are to rig and launch etc.

Whatever whatever is popular, is going to be available, there will be spare parts available locally, and most of all hands on advice when if you get stuck. A bonus is that when you choose to sell, it will be a lot easier to sell to an active market.

The exception is the Laser, now known as the ILCA, they are everywhere - and new ones are usually stocked - which means those who upgrade to new ones, are going to want to sell. (If you want to spend about $9K, the new ones are good value. because they hold their value fairly well). Here's a buying guide: https://www.yachtsandyachting.com/news/234800/ILCA-Buying-Guide (Tip: make sure you get a turbo vang or kicker - the old style vang makes sailing a lot harder). Also, class approved sails etc are better, worth more - because they can be raced at official events. (there are cheaper 'practice sails which are fine too - but can't be used for official events). ILCA (Lasers) are very simple compared to other boats, faster to rig and get on the water once you know what you are doing. They are easy to right once capsized, and fewer parts means fewer things to break. The cost of ownership  is lower than most other classes, however there are a few similar ones like the Aero, not so many on RI, I'm pretty sure. There are a huge number of guides on rigging and technique available on YouTube - you may even consider hiring a coach - ILCA truly is a good class.

If you are committed to learning fast, seriously consider racing. It is like a free master class - and most fleets welcome newbies and give you advice - they love adding new sailors to the fleet. Expect to learn quickly as you copy others - and expect to lose your ego fast - because when you make a mistake you can capsize - I did a lot of capsizing and a lot of coming last when I first started! Now I'm hooked on racing, and probably will be for life.

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Can you rent anything? Anyone you know go a "free" boat going? I say the latter because it's the way I have occasionally found boats, often ones I would never have considered. 

 

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11 hours ago, rabranovic said:

Hello all!

I’m getting the itch to learn more about dinghy sailing.. My wife and I are young, athletic, and have experience sailing j22s, Rhodes 19s, and some larger boats (30-40+ ft)

We’ve had a lot of fun recently in the J22 & are craving something a bit more exciting and athletic feeling as I know a dinghy would offer. I once sailed a 420, which seemed quite small for me (I’m 6ft3), but still a ton of fun.

We have a pretty solid understanding of all basic sailing principals and are confident enough to take out boats in more serious blows..no spinnaker or racing experience till now though...

Now living right next to the water in Rhode Island, we’re anxious to buy a dinghy that we could learn more technique on and would eventually  allow us to work our way up to local racing. 

I’m looking to you all for recommendations on what dinghy would be a good place for us to start and really appreciate any feedback you might be willing to offer. 
 

Have seen a bunch of stuff for sale locally from 505s to 420s to lasers, etc...

 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

RA

VX one.  Check the internet videos out.  it is a well designed, fast, weight assisted dinghy.  At 6-3" it will fit you well. lots of races available up and down the east coast.  Very trailerable.

I own one because my wife said it looked like more fun that a Cal 20.  We took a test sail and she could handle the kite.  Deal.

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7 minutes ago, sailhmb said:

VX one.  Check the internet videos out.  it is a well designed, fast, weight assisted dinghy.  At 6-3" it will fit you well. lots of races available up and down the east coast.  Very trailerable.

I own one because my wife said it looked like more fun that a Cal 20.  We took a test sail and she could handle the kite.  Deal.

The VX-1 is an awesome boat. Not such a good ride for sailing off a beach, but excellent in all other ways. I did a test sail of one, some years back, and still think about it often

FB- Doug

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12 hours ago, rabranovic said:

Hello all!

I’m getting the itch to learn more about dinghy sailing.. My wife and I are young, athletic, and have experience sailing j22s, Rhodes 19s, and some larger boats (30-40+ ft)

We’ve had a lot of fun recently in the J22 & are craving something a bit more exciting and athletic feeling as I know a dinghy would offer. I once sailed a 420, which seemed quite small for me (I’m 6ft3), but still a ton of fun.

We have a pretty solid understanding of all basic sailing principals and are confident enough to take out boats in more serious blows..no spinnaker or racing experience till now though...

Now living right next to the water in Rhode Island, we’re anxious to buy a dinghy that we could learn more technique on and would eventually  allow us to work our way up to local racing. 

I’m looking to you all for recommendations on what dinghy would be a good place for us to start and really appreciate any feedback you might be willing to offer. 
 

Have seen a bunch of stuff for sale locally from 505s to 420s to lasers, etc...

 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

RA

 

As you are in Rhode Island anyway, go to the Wickford Regatta on Jun 5/6. Wander the boat park. Talk to the sailors. Ask them what's so great about the class they are sailing. Kick the wheels (metaphorically speaking) on classes that appeal to you. Better than any boat show or stuff you will read on the Internet.

https://wickford.mysailspace.com
 

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I know I will get a lot of grief for this but if you are new to dingy sailing, you want a simple boat to start with. A Sunfish is probably the easiest dingy to start on and they, like Lasers are everywhere. If you are starting out you can pick up a decent boat for $1,000 and will learn a lot. If you find another more interesting boat after some practice or a few years you can always migrate to that class and sell the Sunfish.

Just a thought.

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18 minutes ago, Rum Runner said:

I know I will get a lot of grief for this but if you are new to dingy sailing, you want a simple boat to start with. A Sunfish is probably the easiest dingy to start on and they, like Lasers are everywhere. If you are starting out you can pick up a decent boat for $1,000 and will learn a lot. If you find another more interesting boat after some practice or a few years you can always migrate to that class and sell the Sunfish.

Just a thought.

Sunfish is certainly an easy dinghy to start on, but the OP talks about wanting something "exciting and athletic." They should at the very least try a Sunfish and a Laser as starter dinghies. (But I may be biased - the Laser was my starter boat.

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I think a Laser is a very good starter boat as well, though I also started out on a Laser so I might be biased. Personally I find the laser a better starter boat than the Sunfish. The Sunfish has some very strange behavior, including excessive weather helm and a tendency to fly out of control on jibes. These can remedied with gooseneck adjustment and a juryrigged vang thing the racers use, but its a bit complicated. The Laser has fewer bad habits!

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If you want to sail double handed... the Fireball! straightforward to sail, reasonable amount of controls to tweak and deadly fast in strong winds.                       Fireball are just a blast to sail.( I'm very biased towards Fireballs though:D).

Calling all past and present Fireball sailors, Fireball has turned 50!http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0243/5491/4382/articles/FireballWC_PointeClaire_at_speed_1200x1200.jpg?v=1595358283

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the great feedback.

I'm leaning towards something that we can doublehand as it is a sport my wife and I are really enjoying "as a team" so for that reason I've been less interested in lasers, sunfish, etc... An alternative option would be to buy two of these and have a blast racing eachother!! :D 

The VX one and some of the other larger boats mentioned look awesome but the price of entry seems a lot higher than some of the smaller boats. I would be launching off my beach across the street from me, so really want a boat where that is feasible

505s do seem to be around at reasonable prices and I am not necessarily looking to win, rather just to be out having fun, learning, getting exercise and sailing on something very exciting... that outlook may change, but for now that's where my head is at.

Definitely going to head over to the Wickford Regatta--- great suggestion! Perhaps see some of you local RI folks there.

Thanks again- seems like a great community here.

Ryan

 

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1 hour ago, rabranovic said:

Thanks for the great feedback.

I'm leaning towards something that we can doublehand as it is a sport my wife and I are really enjoying "as a team" so for that reason I've been less interested in lasers, sunfish, etc... An alternative option would be to buy two of these and have a blast racing eachother!! :D 

The VX one and some of the other larger boats mentioned look awesome but the price of entry seems a lot higher than some of the smaller boats. I would be launching off my beach across the street from me, so really want a boat where that is feasible

505s do seem to be around at reasonable prices and I am not necessarily looking to win, rather just to be out having fun, learning, getting exercise and sailing on something very exciting... that outlook may change, but for now that's where my head is at.

Definitely going to head over to the Wickford Regatta--- great suggestion! Perhaps see some of you local RI folks there.

Thanks again- seems like a great community here.

Ryan

 

If you get a 505 you'll at least be able to beat me in my old antique haha. I have the old spinnaker even!

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15 hours ago, rabranovic said:

Thanks for the great feedback.

I'm leaning towards something that we can doublehand as it is a sport my wife and I are really enjoying "as a team" so for that reason I've been less interested in lasers, sunfish, etc... An alternative option would be to buy two of these and have a blast racing eachother!! :D 

Great advise on this thread about figuring out local fleets.

...also consider a beach cat. Just back from a great time in Clearwater FL, several boats - F16 and F18 - sailed by couples. One couple racing separately (they placed 1st and 3rd). Super sporty, athletic, fast, fun, and that's just the swimming part!

Then on a lazy summer day you depower it fully, load a cooler, friends, kids, and sail slowly to a nearby sandbar. Can't do that with a tippy dinghy.

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Where are these reasonably priced 505s you speak of? For the record while the 505 is a great boat, it might not be a great beginner boat. They're pretty high performance and the newer ones have so many control lines it looks like an accident at a spaghetti factory. I would recommend a vanguard 15, simple athletic two person boat with plenty of close racing near to you

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V15 is my second fav sinvlehander. I weigh 17 stone

We raced the 2010 nationals in Jamestown. There were 40 something boats.

No spin, super simple. Back then it was collegr sailing 2.0. lots of couples, just like college. Veryclose racing. Good time.

Raced it in Portsmouth weekly with jy15 and others. Pretty closelyvmatched.

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A Windmill might be a option too, though they don't have spinnakers. The class is starting to gain some traction in the U.S,  a local regatta has a 15 boat fleet. Very nice boats with a good turn of speed.

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Not many rentals in RI that I ever found - but lots of boats for sale. There are lots of similar threads so certainly some searching will find every and any opinion.

I think what the pros here will say is that a decision of "total fun and athletic and fast" is one goal and OD or other regular racing is another. Also the exact body of water and area you sail in matters (the Sakonnet is rough, while Newport Harbor is not - lots of other rivers, bays and coves).

Those flat bottom rigs (Melges) look FAST. But I wouldn't want to sail one up the Sakonnet. 

Start a list and put the various metrics (boat weight - if you are using dolly, etc.) on it and it will whittle down. No doubt Lasers are big around there - one day I was at 3rd Beach and about 100 of them showed up. You couldn't see the water for the Lasers!  But they stayed in the cove. 

It's like any other boat - you are going to have to determine the exact conditions and water - I have personally never (not once) saw a Dinghy out sailing in the midst of the Sakonnet - closest I've seen are small catboats - dinghies stay within 100 feet of the beach on the Tiverton side (Tiverton Yacht Club? Might be another resource - they have fleets of this or that). 

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If you look in the "Craigslist finds" thread i this forum there are some boats in the NE listed - as samples. A CL 16 (Wayfayer Dinghy) was listed in  good shape for $650! That is an ultimate bargain and you can seat 2 (4 if you want) in it - it is said to be one of the most stable of those size boats. 

If you have some bucks there is a RS Quest for sale for about 7K (used) on Craigslist RI....that would be 11 or 12K fitted out that way and is an almost new boat. It's rotomolded and even tho the price is higher you will get a good price for it when and if you move on, so if you have money sitting around just consider it an investment (you'd probably get 5K for it after 4 or 5 years of use). 

I tried one a few weeks ago - it is a well engineered and heavy-duty machine. 

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505 and F18 are on short list. Both have local fleets. Both good rough wtr. Both trap spin so dinghy or cat.

V15 and JY 15 local fleets nonspin. V15 open water all day long. 5o5 better but fine.

Windmill cool. No fleet RI. Go to Ohio for that.

If you two are welterweights the international 420 a hoot but generally juniors. They are at Wickford regatta tio

Also 29er will be there. There is a 29er presence in Newport. Lighter crew wgt range than 505. Asym.

Niot really any ither options locally I can see...

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53 minutes ago, craigiri said:

Not many rentals in RI that I ever found - but lots of boats for sale. There are lots of similar threads so certainly some searching will find every and any opinion.

I think what the pros here will say is that a decision of "total fun and athletic and fast" is one goal and OD or other regular racing is another. Also the exact body of water and area you sail in matters (the Sakonnet is rough, while Newport Harbor is not - lots of other rivers, bays and coves).

Those flat bottom rigs (Melges) look FAST. But I wouldn't want to sail one up the Sakonnet. 

Start a list and put the various metrics (boat weight - if you are using dolly, etc.) on it and it will whittle down. No doubt Lasers are big around there - one day I was at 3rd Beach and about 100 of them showed up. You couldn't see the water for the Lasers!  But they stayed in the cove. 

It's like any other boat - you are going to have to determine the exact conditions and water - I have personally never (not once) saw a Dinghy out sailing in the midst of the Sakonnet - closest I've seen are small catboats - dinghies stay within 100 feet of the beach on the Tiverton side (Tiverton Yacht Club? Might be another resource - they have fleets of this or that). 

Great points. We'll be rolling the boat onto the beach so weight for that will definitely be a consideration. Sailing will primarily be in mt.hope bay-- right across from the Roger Williams sailing center.. I wonder what those guys are running- see thenm out every day. Sakonnet is SUPER rough, but over around this side of the point it's substantially calmer

 

"think what the pros here will say is that a decision of "total fun and athletic and fast"  This is what I'm looking for- fun, exciting, fast, opportunity to learn/improve more than the importance of the ability to race and win locally. That might be a goal for us a few years down the road & could convert to a different boat by that point

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1 hour ago, fastyacht said:

505 and F18 are on short list. Both have local fleets. Both good rough wtr. Both trap spin so dinghy or cat.

V15 and JY 15 local fleets nonspin. V15 open water all day long. 5o5 better but fine.

Windmill cool. No fleet RI. Go to Ohio for that.

If you two are welterweights the international 420 a hoot but generally juniors. They are at Wickford regatta tio

Also 29er will be there. There is a 29er presence in Newport. Lighter crew wgt range than 505. Asym.

Niot really any ither options locally I can see...

Thanks for the good feedback. Seems like what we are seeing as well. I really don't think the 420 will be a good fit for us based on my size 6'3" ~200lbs...

 

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1 hour ago, craigiri said:

If you look in the "Craigslist finds" thread i this forum there are some boats in the NE listed - as samples. A CL 16 (Wayfayer Dinghy) was listed in  good shape for $650! That is an ultimate bargain and you can seat 2 (4 if you want) in it - it is said to be one of the most stable of those size boats. 

If you have some bucks there is a RS Quest for sale for about 7K (used) on Craigslist RI....that would be 11 or 12K fitted out that way and is an almost new boat. It's rotomolded and even tho the price is higher you will get a good price for it when and if you move on, so if you have money sitting around just consider it an investment (you'd probably get 5K for it after 4 or 5 years of use). 

I tried one a few weeks ago - it is a well engineered and heavy-duty machine. 

I was looking at that RS Quest... Seems like it may not be a bad introduction for us to dinghy sailing.. I've read quite a few comments about the rotomold boats feeling a lot less interesting/dead in comparison to some of the other options we are talking about here.

Any thoughts on that?

Thanks!

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3 hours ago, rabranovic said:

 

I was looking at that RS Quest... Seems like it may not be a bad introduction for us to dinghy sailing.. I've read quite a few comments about the rotomold boats feeling a lot less interesting/dead in comparison to some of the other options we are talking about here.

Any thoughts on that?

Thanks!

The RS Quest is aimed primarily at the family and training market. It is a good boat to take your kids for a ride or to learn to sail in. All the reviews use words like "comfort" and "stable." If "athletic" and "exciting" are what you are looking for, there are other boats (both singlehanded and double handed) in the RS Sailing range that might be a better fit.

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4 hours ago, rabranovic said:

 Sailing will primarily be in mt.hope bay-- right across from the Roger Williams sailing center.. I wonder what those guys are running- see thenm out every day. Sakonnet is SUPER rough, but over around this side of the point it's substantially calmer

from the RWU website, their learn to sail program uses FJs.

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5 hours ago, craigiri said:

I think what the pros here will say is that a decision of "total fun and athletic and fast" is one goal and OD or other regular racing is another. Also the exact body of water and area you sail in matters (the Sakonnet is rough, while Newport Harbor is not - lots of other rivers, bays and coves).

Those flat bottom rigs (Melges) look FAST. But I wouldn't want to sail one up the Sakonnet. 

Start a list and put the various metrics (boat weight - if you are using dolly, etc.) on it and it will whittle down. No doubt Lasers are big around there - one day I was at 3rd Beach and about 100 of them showed up. You couldn't see the water for the Lasers!  But they stayed in the cove. 

It's like any other boat - you are going to have to determine the exact conditions and water - I have personally never (not once) saw a Dinghy out sailing in the midst of the Sakonnet - closest I've seen are small catboats - dinghies stay within 100 feet of the beach on the Tiverton side (Tiverton Yacht Club? Might be another resource - they have fleets of this or that). 

I have sailed both a Laser and RS Aero on the Sakonnet many more times than I can count.

The New England Laser Masters regatta used to sail out of Third Beach and every time I entered that event we sailed out in the Sakonnet river. You can get some superb waves rolling in from the ocean there if the conditions are right.

I have done some solo recreational sailing in a Laser and RS Aero on the Sakonnet, often launching from Fogland or Seapowet beaches. There's more wind and tide out in the channel but sailing between Seapowet and Fogland is often quite tame. Then there was the day I snapped my Laser bottom mast in the middle of the river - but that's another story.

In more recent years a friend and I have sailed several times every year in RS Aeros launching from Little Compton. Sometimes there are waves to ride and sometimes not. But if the wind is up and from the south you can sail screaming reaches across to Aquidneck and back and enjoy some of the most "athletic" and "exciting" dinghy sailing you would ever wish for. 

I have also sailed Mount Hope Bay in the Laser and the RS  Aero. A fun trip is to sail from Independence Park in Bristol, out of the harbor and then under the Mount Hope Bridge to RWU. Or launch from the ramp at the bottom of Annawamscutt Drive in Bristol and sail south to Common Fence Point and RWU. The west side of Mount Hope Bay often has quite gusty and variable winds if the wind is in the SW, which I guess is attributable to the sea breeze coming over Mount Hope. Another fine excursion on Mount Hope Bay is to sail over to Spar Island (watch out for the rocks on its south side) and land there.

Bottom line @rabranovic is you are in a superb spot for great dinghy sailing whoever way you go. There is racing for Aeros and Lasers at Bristol YC on Tuesday evenings - and frostbiting there on Saturdays in the winter. Just don't write off the Sakonnet. There's way more of it to sail than the stretch in front of TYC.
 

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9 hours ago, Alan Crawford said:

Merlin Rocket - What we're missing here...

https://www.yachtsandyachting.com/news/196102/The-Sorcerers-Apprentice

 

No, for what the couple sound like they want, this is what you are really missing there:rolleyes:

[I gather the Vanguard Vector might be the closest - maybe only - US match, but seems a bit compromised from the photos I've seen],

 

341984023__LauraFrancine_14-1.png

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Ryan

I'm biased because I own and Race a 505. But its a great fleet to grow and learn in. NA's are in Newport this year so you will see 30-50 boats (normal for a non-covid year) in Sept. 

You and your wife are the right size (not really a wrong per se) and there are many spouse teams. 

What I will say is the boat is easy to sail hard to sail well. Takes time energy and practice to sail well. BUT the 505 sailors are some of the nicest and open group I have sailed with. No secrets cheating etc. Even very few protests. We tend to work it out on the water. Every regatta has a debrief and we hold numerous fleet training events at low or no cost. Often the top sailors in the boat host the clinic and their advice is priceless. 

You  can get into on for a little more than the laser put some time and elbow grease into it and have a competitive local/regional boat. 

Go to  usa505.org and get an invite to the north east google group and ask for a ride. 

Here is a boat in your neighborhood. Looks decent for the price. https://usa505.org/advert/505-8790/ Needs some upgrades but probably raceable OOTB. 

Also to reiterate. If you want to race and get better you sort of have to sail what is in your region. But a 505 is nearly as fast as a skiff and much less balancing to sail. Boats are in your area take advantage 

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We have lots of female drivers with both mid-boom 4:1 and transom sheeting (1:1) and they do great. A couple boats have 2:1 transom sheeting like a 49er for easier effort. But I have also run the main from the wire works fine. 

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FD ans 5o5 have this perfect situation where each end of the boat is just as important and rewarding but diierent ways. Same applies to fireball Merlinrocket etc. And the single trap gives opportunities to both big people and little, short and tall.

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6’3”

 

I am 5’10” and a bit round but even whenni was thin, I was too big fir most double handed dinghies.

1.. 1A.. And first most orimary consideration.

Do you want to play in a racing fleet??

if the answer is yes, the ONLY advice I have follows:

 

Visit nearby sailing clubs, introduce yourselves abd see what seems to fit YOU. 
NOBODY ELSE is you. None of us lives in your head and we have no idea what you will enjoy most. 
please resist the temptation to settle on the first club you visit. Given the right conditions, I can pretty much make any sailboat ride into the best ride a newbie has ever had. 
 

local matters . If you lived in Eastern Dallas I would tell you how wonderful it would be for you to go to Rush Creek Yacht club and try an MC Scow ride 

if you lived more central or west around Dallas would be suggesting you visit the giant Flying Scot fleet  at White Rock lake 

if you were in Austin I would have to tell you there is no Centerboard boat fleet but I wouid introduce you to sailors with Catalina 22, Pearson 26, J-22, J-24, or Lasers fir Wednesday night 

 

 

shop shop shop

dont buy yet

visit

shop

think it over

 

 

 


 

 

 

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On 5/26/2021 at 10:59 AM, rabranovic said:

 

I was looking at that RS Quest... Seems like it may not be a bad introduction for us to dinghy sailing.. I've read quite a few comments about the rotomold boats feeling a lot less interesting/dead in comparison to some of the other options we are talking about here.

Any thoughts on that?

Thanks!

In RI winds I think it will be more than exciting enough - and I think it had a chute you can pull.

I sailed one just for 90  minutes in FL at a local club. I liked it. It is very well engineered  so that's always something - nice to look at a boat and see all the thought that went into it (the top vang, everything in the right places, etc).

I  was considering a Quest but since this may be my one-up boat I may just get a Zest - b/c I can rent boats at the club(s) in FL. 

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21 hours ago, craigiri said:

In RI winds I think it will be more than exciting enough - and I think it had a chute you can pull.

I sailed one just for 90  minutes in FL at a local club. I liked it. It is very well engineered  so that's always something - nice to look at a boat and see all the thought that went into it (the top vang, everything in the right places, etc).

I  was considering a Quest but since this may be my one-up boat I may just get a Zest - b/c I can rent boats at the club(s) in FL. 

If you want an "athletic" and "exciting" RS boat for one person then go with the RS Aero - or RS100 if you want a spinnaker.

RS Zests are fine boats but they are mainly aimed at folk learning to sail, especially kids.

But as @Gouvernail said above - try before you buy. I cannot believe that any adults who are "young, athletic, and have experience sailing j22s, Rhodes 19s" and who are looking for "excitement" would choose the Zest over the Aero after trying both.

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Man, I don't now why anyone would get a RS Zest if they could get a Laser or a Areo! Both are much faster and more refined, as well as having good racing.

The Zest always struck as being a pudgy, ugly sort of dinghy.

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1 hour ago, Admiral Hornblower said:

Man, I don't now why anyone would get a RS Zest if they could get a Laser or a Areo! Both are much faster and more refined, as well as having good racing.

The Zest always struck as being a pudgy, ugly sort of dinghy.

That's exactly what I want - no racing, maybe 2 people on board once in a while, use wind strength (as opposed to sail options) to determine my level of play - and easy light weight and low cost. 

That RS 100 in MI is for sale - looks like a great boat for someone, but it seems to say JUST single hander. About 4900 for 2012 with lots of equipment.

I want boring and bulletproof because there are plenty of other boats I can rent and/or even volunteer on (or even qualify on and sail) at the various clubs. Haivng a boat myself means I can go out at sunset (clubs limit rentals), haul to other places (car-top?) etc. 

Guy with the RS 100 loves it but says at 78 he can't really sail it correctly any more. That always has to be taken into account. 

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