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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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Old 07-11-2007
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Which boat to start on?

Hi, I`m new to this forum so I would like to say hi to you all. I`m from Croatia so I apologize for any spelling mistakes.

So, I am 16yo and I would like to learn sailing. I know its a bit late for any serious sailing but I would like to give it a chance. I already sailed a laser 4.7 for a couple of times (capsized myself also ), but I have a problem with my sailing school and thats only 3 hours a week spent on sea. So I thought about buying my self a boat and currently I am able to get Europa, Laser, and 470 dinghy.

My questions are:
1) Which is the best dinghy to learn on for competitive sailing, so I could later go on bigger sailboats (also competitive)? On which boat will I get the most expirience I could later use?
2) Should it be single-handed or maybe double-handed?

Thats it for now,
Thank you for any response.
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Old 07-11-2007
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Greetings crosailor,

I would go with a Laser. The 470's are pretty difficult to sail for a beginner and require a lot of hanging out (trapeze). The 420 is much better to learn on, but at 16 you may have already out grown them. Same goes for the Europa; although I've haven't sailed them, they seem to be designed for younger, lighter sailors, more like the Optimist, or just a step above, (less than 100lbs). The Lasers, in contrast, are designed for heavier people, up to 180lbs (90Kg?) which would allow you to grow into, rather than out of it, as time goes by. A two person boat might be more fun, but I believe the Lasers will give you the most enjoyment and the best experience.
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Old 07-11-2007
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Hi, I`m new to this forum so I would like to say hi to you all. I`m from Croatia so I apologize for any spelling mistakes.

You spell better than most of us ;-)
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Old 07-11-2007
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I have a 13" chrysler pirateer that I tear around in a small lake on. This was a great beginner boat because it has a main sail and jib to work. I still have a blast sailing it.
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Old 07-11-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slayer
I have a 13" chrysler pirateer that I tear around in a small lake on. This was a great beginner boat because it has a main sail and jib to work. I still have a blast sailing it.

I'm guessing there are not a lot of Chrysler's in Croatia, (cars or boats)
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Old 07-11-2007
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Go with the Laser

I agree with earlier advice you were given that the Laser is a good choice. There are competitive fleets all over the world. You can buy an older boat to learn on and beat up (and save some money), and then trade up later when you've got experience to a newer or new boat. They are very challenging to sail, and will teach you a LOT that you'll be able to translate later to bigger boats. AND you can go out anytime you want without needing crew.

Kurt
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Old 07-11-2007
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but if it's only 13" long, it should be pretty cheap to ship.

I did wonder about the choices. Is that really all that is available or just what you have narrowed it down to?
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Old 07-11-2007
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Well, here in Croatia people sail mostly optimist, europa and laser boats, but you can find finn, 470, 49er, star, tornado and probably other (except Chrysler`s I guess ). I will buy used boat so I narrowed it to europa and laser boats because they are easiest to find (every school has it). What age would you recommend, something older (80`, 90`) or something newer (2001, 2002 ...)? I don`t know how different they are so if anyone could explain .
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Old 07-11-2007
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I would try to find one that has either been upgraded or is newer model. The older ones do not have the outhaul and Cunningham cleats on the deck, so it's nearly impossible to adjust them when you're sitting out (hiking).
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Old 07-11-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knotaloud
I'm guessing there are not a lot of Chrysler's in Croatia, (cars or boats)

I know,,,,just had to add my 2 cents,,,,for what its worth.
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