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nickmerc 09-07-2012 12:28 PM

Time to Downsize
With great regret the wife and I have decided it is time to downsize and sell our Pearson 30. However, all is not lost. She wants us to get a trailerable family day sailer so we can still sail. Did I mention she is the best sailing wife ever (She also insisted we get the Pearson when I sold my Hobie 18)?

I started to look at different day sailers online and am having trouble narrowing down what I should look into futher.

Here are my criteria:
- Trailerable (<= 1200 lbs w/ trailer)
- Comfortably fit 4 adults
- 30 min setup/take down time (with practice)
- Some area for storage for kid stuff
- Singlehand-able
- Relatively dry
- Total budget - what we sell the Pearson for

I would like to be able to have some fun when kids are not on board so some performance would be nice.

I have been looking into Thistles (local fleet) and Lightnings as they look to be lots of fun to sail. However, they may not be stable enough for the family. They also look somewhat complicated to set up and take down. I will be meeting some local sailors in the next few weeks to see these boats "in person".

I have also looked at the Precision 15 and 185 centerboard models. I haven't see too much information about sailing them but there is a local dealer and I should be able to get a test sail from them.

Any help in narrowing down my search will be much appreciated.

Frag 09-07-2012 12:42 PM

Re: Time to Downsize
You should consider Tanzer 22 or Tanzer 24. They are quitre roomy for their size and a lot of those can be moved around with trailer.

The 22 has a swing keel option as well, making it fun to use in shallow water.

They are REALLY popular and liked up here in canada. You can trust those...

nickmerc 09-07-2012 07:08 PM

Re: Time to Downsize
I don't know if the Tanzers meet my <1200 lbs (including trailer) weight limit. Plus I have to store this in my backyard in a subdivision. I am aiming at the trailerable day sailer genre.

ccriders 09-08-2012 11:02 AM

Re: Time to Downsize
What do you mean by comfortably fit 4 adults?
Seems most racing dinghys would work. I once sailed Flying Juniors and raced with two adults as crew. We flew a main, jib and spinnaker. But four adults would be problematic while racing, but doable just sailing around.
If you really want to race, find out what fleets are locally available and go with one of them. For what its worth, J24 racers routinely trailer their boats around Texas for a really competitive fleet.
If you are down sizing because of age, you might be making the wrong decision to go with a centerboard boat. If it is economics then look at the local racing fleets.

TakeFive 09-08-2012 11:39 AM

Re: Time to Downsize
Another guy here recently bought a Flying Scot. I rented one a couple years ago and we had 5 adults on it with plenty of space. It's a very comfortable boat. I think there was a storage area under the foredeck.

Just another option to consider.

JoeDiver 09-08-2012 12:03 PM

Re: Time to Downsize
Your weight limit is going to hurt you trying to fulfill your other requirements.

nickmerc 09-08-2012 07:27 PM

Re: Time to Downsize
I am downsizing to accommodate our situation. We moved from Annapolis to St. Louis (staying employed really sucks the fun out of life) almost 2 years ago. We brought the Pearson with us and it is currently at a lake 1.5 hours away. It's not a bad place to sail. However, being in the middle of a corn field the spiders and mud daubers are a gigantic problem. I spend about 1-2 hours each trip to the boat cleaning them up. We have a 3 year old who is not as tolerant of being on the boat as when she was younger. She still likes to sail, but about 2 hours at a time is her max. So, when you figure in the travel time, cleanup time, and the trip time it is becoming more of a hassle that the wife and I would like.

Instead of giving up sailing altogether we decided a day sailer will be a good compromise for our current mission. That way we can go to the smaller lake closer to home, keep the boat in our yard, and have more opportunites to sail.

The weight limit is based on our vehicles. (VW Passat 1.8L, and Honda CR-V). Neither known for their towing ability. 1200 #'s is about the max they can safely tow.

If I/we race it will be in a very casual fleet, if at all. I just want a bit of performance so I can have some fun when the kid is taking a break.

We looked at a Precision 185 today on a whim. Did not get a chance to sail it. It seems like a well constructed boat and will definitely meet the weight, space, and trailerability requirements. I just need to find one to test sail. The dealer will not splash the stock boat because it will start the warranty clock.

I sailed an FS in college and was not a big fan. It might be worth another look since it has been several years.

Siamese 09-08-2012 08:31 PM

Re: Time to Downsize
The "four adults" part of your criteria really throws a monkey wrench into it. Today, more than ever, the size of adults varies, so I can only guess what your situation is.

I suggest you look at the Sea Pearl 21 with a trailerable weight of 600 pounds. Easy to rig (no stays). Not your typical sailboat, but worth a close look.

ccriders 09-08-2012 10:36 PM

Re: Time to Downsize
Moving is a pisser for sure. I was in the Army and as a consequence I had three distinct sailing "careers". Getting in and out of boats can be difficult and never works to your advantage when you have a must sell drop dead date. I sounds like racing is not such a big deal to you, just that you would like to have a snappy performing boat. There are some current generation racing dinghys that will make the old Flying Scot feel like a slug, but the cost is going to be considerably higher than an FS. The Mielges 22 races with a crew of 4, it has keel that raises vertically, not swing, has a big lead bulb on the end and is really really fast. The local yacht club hosted a Mielges regatta and I was amazed at what they could do, both light winds and 25kts with lots of chop.
Have fun shopping.

sww914 09-09-2012 12:45 AM

Re: Time to Downsize
I second the Flying Scot. I had one and it was a great boat. Sailed it once in 30 knots with no reef, that was fun. They have some good videos on their website.
It was the most hassle free boat that I've ever owned.

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