There is no real difference between sailing a P18 and a mono hull pocket cruiser, except the mono will feel like its permanently stuck in low gear
Heh...yeah, I was expecting this, but it was indeed an eye opener...the boat barely moved with 5kts...the Prindle scoots right along, so long as there is nearly any breeze. I suppose it's the difference between 335lbs of displacement and 2800...I also find it vaguely unsettling to "trust" that I won't capsize the thing...but, given time I'm sure I'll get over it. Got a few nice gusts, and spent some time running with the water at the gunwales.
Best advice I can give you for getting started is to make it fun and don't worry about getting in a lot of sailing miles for a couple years. Some kids have more tolerance and interest in the actual sailing and getting to new destinations but most don't really care until they are older, and instead will get bored with hours and hours of sailing, or freaked out if conditions deteriorate.
Indeed! I noticed this already. I am looking for something with tanks, a simple galley and a head. I was pleasantly surprised by how roomy the 22' was, but I really think we will need|want a head and a sink (at a minimum) to comfortably sail short distances and then "boat camp" (gunkholing), which is the main near-term objective. If we can use the boat as a kind of weekend RV for fishing, swimming, etc., on the Chesapeake Bay (which is plenty large enough to explore for a while), then we'll be accomplishing the object of this switch. I do hope that in a few years (certainly by age 10) my son will enjoy the thrill enough to have some fun on the catamaran.
I'm not super-concerned about engine maintenance - I've been working on small engines and larger engines since I was a teenager, and I've rebuilt a few two and four stroke engines. Given that we'll really be doing a lot of coastal cruising - by which I mean: within view of the shore and navigation aids - I expect to be able to work up to the navigation part of this gradually, but I'll be doing the 103 and 104, so I expect to pick up a bit more there. I will certainly get ahold of a decent GPS!
What I do worry about - since we're going to go with a very used boat - are things like delamination, rotted keel bolts and flexing keels. Ragged out sails come to mind as well.
Anyway, for the moment, a few more trips on the C22 Capri to get my wife and son a little more comfortable, and in the meantime, I'm exploring marinas which are a reasonable drive from home for us. Just wanted to drop in and say hello!