first--I have never sailed, came across older hc 14 or 16 ?hulls appear to be in ok shape (dirty and some cracking)did notice dime size somewhat patched hole. boat has two tramps if that helps anyone. unknown 1 or 2 sails ,I think 1 it's yellowish and somewhat ratty. the person whats 300.00 or b.o. and has trailer ok shape... any advice to a newbie and so far non sailer, is this too much boat, will be sailing on local lakes thanks in advance
I would suggest that you don't start sailing because you found an inexpensive old boat. You would be better off getting rides as a crew on Hobies (or others) and learning more about it. I have an H-16 and wouldn't want anything else. It can be single handed or carry up to 4 people. There must be people sailing on your lakes that would gladly let you crew. Once you decide what boat you want, go look for one.
Buying an old boat can end up being a lot of work and you end up working when you want to be sailing. If you have any interest in sailing at all you will become addicted to it once you experience it.
I would have to agree whole-heartedly with Howards advice.
You will want be careful about an old boat unless you really know what you are getting into. Your particular description of the vessel tells me that you really don`t know what you are looking at; or perhaps even what you are looking for. Do not misinterpret me in this regard, it is perfectly understandable (and normal) NOT to know such things - we have all "been there".
You will have a much greater chance of success and satisfaction upon entering the sport if you get as much information and experience beforehand. Otherwise, as Howard suggested, you may find yourself bogged down with time and expense repairing/outfitting an old boat and never end up actually sailing.
Another thing worth mentioning is that these types of catamarans are very fast, exciting, and at times, extremely powerful. In that regard, an H16 can scare the BeJesus out of just about anyone; at one time or another. Some people just don`t like this degree of thrill/fear and may find that such a boat is simply "not for them". You certainly wouldn`t be the first person to buy a high-performance catamaran (new or used) only to discover that the thought of sailing it (the second time) is too much to bear. I have taken a few friends sailing on mine. One friend absolutely loves it, and two others will not go sailing on it again. My sailing skills notwithstanding, it is definitely a "whole-lotta-boat" when the wind picks up.
I too sail mostly on smaller inland lakes. However, it would be a mistake to assume this is somehow easier/better when learning to sail. I much, much prefer the bigger bodies of water. The reasons for this are two-fold. First, I have found that the smaller the lake, the tougher the sailing is insofar that wind turbulence and excessive tacking are concerned. These Cats can cross a small inland lake in no time at all; requiring constant tacking. And, the turbulence due to nearby trees and hills can be tough to deal with and not much fun either. Second, is the issue of "sea-room" and this is a biggie - especially when sailing solo. The only real "trouble" I have gotten into involved having to right a capsized boat (and you will capsize lots) without enough sea room to either get the job done at all, or having to do it so quickly as to exhaust myself and make the prospect of another capsize (without sea room) hazardous. This is especially true if the shoreline is rocky and the wind is really blowing. When capsized, these boats drift surprizingly fast towards the sailors biggest hazard - the lee shore.
Having said all that, let me tell you that the H16 was/is my first sailboat - although I did have some prior sailing experience and a good deal of boating knowledge. My boat was also an oldie (1977) that I repaired, restored and outfitted "To the Nines"... It can be done and it can be satisfying. I really do love the boat and MOST of the thrills it continually provides - bruises and all. However, it was not cheap, or easy, to take an old boat and learn to sail without a teacher. I used books, videos and this website - A LOT.
I would do it exactly the same all over again. My only regret is that I don`t get to sail nearly as much as I`d like to... Sailing every day would be nice.
This is exactly how I got into sailing. I picked up a 1976 H16 for $300.00 (no trailer) and had never sailed anything before. I bought some books and learned enough about sailing to take it out on our own. May not of been the best way to learn, but if you don't have anyone in your area to teach you, I'm sure it'll work out for you. The H16 has two tramps that are laced together in the center.
I had never been on a cat in my life when I bought my first H16. I had sailed a Laser ONCE and crewed a monohull twice. I had a guy take me out on it a couple of times, then the wife and I have sailed it ourselves ever since. She had never sailed either. Just start easy in light winds and read all you can about it. So if you want it and you are interested in sailing, go for it.
Howard is right about buying an old boat. I found myself working on it all the time instead of sailing...and worse...I had no idea what I was doing (working on it). So, after getting frustrated, I finally gave up, sold the old boat, and bought a new one. This has all happened since April of this year. I'm happy now.
The H16 has two tramps that are laced together in the center.
Just to avoid confusion for the new sailor: The standard Hobie has ONE trampoline that happens to come in three pieces that lace together to fill the space between the aft crossbeam and the main beam.
A boat that has TWO trampolines, meaning there is another one forward of the main crossbeam, might actually be a G-Cat....or a Hobie or some other cat with an after-market add-on tramp. That is why I asked the question.
Sounds a lot like my story on Cats with the execption of having the privalage of several hours of a week long vacation on Mission Bay SD back in 76 on a H16.
I got my first H16 (hulls are being replaced very soon due to large softspost) in December this year, aquired a second set of hulls with rails and rudders. I now have 2 daughters (7 and 16) that love the boats, a son (14) that prefers power boats (go figure) and a third daughter (17) that is not sure what she prefers.
Anyway, as my wife always says "If it is ment to be it will be" You will find the right boat, read tons, go over what you have read and what it means, go out in light to medium winds and learn to right the boat. It is all very simple.
Enjoy your weekend, we are off to a Great little NM Lake. Me and My 7 Year old
Even though you might spend a fair while doing things to it at the end you will understand how to fix and maintain a boat and how expensive it is to let a boat go. Its a lot easier on the heart to rip the decks of a dear old girl than a $20000 A class. I would really encourage you to go for it and repair it as economically as posible, at any stage of the repairs if you have a doubt search this forum or post a query on this site. I have just gone through all that and yes I parted with the first boat but it gave me an economical start to my now uneconomical addiction. I encourage you to go for it and keep us up to date on what you go through. Could the two tramps be one old and one new one? regards
Jeff Southall Current boats Nacra 5.8 1703 Animal Scanning Services Nacra 5.8 1667 Ram Raider Nacra 18 Square Arrow 1576
I had a similar induction into cat sailing as the other who posted. When I was 5 years old my parents had an oday 29 (or sommething like that). It was a "large" mono for the family. I hadn't sailed since that time until I bought my H16.
I decided I wanted to learn how to sail and I wanted to do it on a Hobie. I was in LA visiting a friend and saw a guy sail his H16 trapped out flying a hull onto the beach. That's when I decided what kind of boat I wanted. As luck would have it I saw an H16 on a trailer on my way home from the airport. It looked to be in good condition (I really didn't know what I was doing at the time) and I could "afford" the boat so I bought it. I was in school at the time and probably shouldn't have spent the money on it.
I then bought a book on sailing, read it and got on the water. I was sailing on large ponds that the locals called lakes. I spent many hours righting the boat. I did not have the advantage of other sailors around. I was an engineering student and assumed since I knew about the mechanics of sailing that applying them would be easy. I was humbled, but had lots of fun doing it. And now I am on my second boat and am teaching my new wife how to sail and not just be the figurehead of the boat.
Looking back on it I was very lucky to find a boat in good condition that I didn't need to repair or update too much. Take the time to find a good boat. There are great deals out there. Especially on the H16. You can get a good boat (not for racing) with a trailer for around $1000 depending on geography, condition, and any extras it may have.
Current Boat Looking for one
Previous Boats '84 H16 '82 H18 Magnum '74 Pearson 30 St. Louis, MO
I paid $250 for an '83 Hobie 16 with trailer. Spent around $2000 for sails, new tramp, rigging, line, and misc. parts. Spent many months getting everything together, trailer and boat registered, added some fiberglass to the bottom of hulls with epoxy, dismantled the whole boat and put it back together and it sails great.
Many hours of research and discussion with more experienced sailors, and it is all worth it. You will learn by trial and error, but can avoid many mistakes by searching this forum, saving yourself time, money, and injury.