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  1. #71
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    River Itchen, Southampton
    Posts
    7,223

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quiddle View Post
    Nah. I'm an RYA Cruising Instructor with my own boat but have just coerced Mrs Q to do 2 dinghy courses rather than teach her sail on a keel boat. Name one great sailor who didn't start in dinghies.
    Become an unconcious competent regarding wind awareness in dinghies (you learn fast either to swim or sail) then you can concentrate on yachty stuff.
    If, inderstandably, you're not keen on getting dunked in UK waters make a holiday of it in Greece or wherever.
    The unconscious competence point is good advice.
    Allows you to learn the big boat stuff, handling, nav etc without being overloaded.
    The expert dinghy sailors that think there is nothing else to learn are a hazard however! Up there with the guys who buy a big mobo as their first boat and think they know it because it has a steering wheel. For the avoidance of doubt it’s clear the OP will not be in this category

  2. #72
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Originally Posted by Quiddle
    Quote:[I]Nah. I'm an RYA Cruising Instructor with my own boat but have just coerced Mrs Q to do 2 dinghy courses rather than teach her sail on a keel boat. Name one great sailor who didn't start in dinghies. [i}

    Kpt. Krystyna Chojnowska-Liskiewicz. The first woman who circumnavigated solo.
    Naval architect by profession. Her first boat, i.e. the one she learned to sail on was a DZ-ta. Check out what that is...you will get a surprise.

  3. #73
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    75

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Definitely sail a dinghy. Besides all that's already been said, a few days' dinghy sailing can include hundreds of tacks and gybes, dozens of MOB drills, all of which you feel not just through the tiller but also through the (uncleated) mainsheet and the heel/motion/sound of the hull on the water. You'll feel what happens if you sail with too much kicker, or with the mainsheet too tight. Those sensations are there on a bigger, heavier boat, but only as a faint echo of what became our instinct as dinghy sailors.

    And if you bump into the jetty in your dinghy, it will just bounce off. And if, as noted, you have a swim....well, more fun than falling overboard your yacht because you couldn't tell she was about to gybe.

    When I came to do my DS and coastal skipper courses, I didn't even have to be taught how to maneuvre and moor the yacht. Completely obvious to me by that point.

    From experience sailing with hundreds of non-dinghy sailors aboard yachts, barely half a dozen had actually developed that instinctive feel. They had done so over serious miles and months of sailing, and were remarkable for their embrace of learning. Bet they could have got there quicker on a dinghy! The rest...well, they were ok, some of them could helm a bit, many couldn't for toffee. But they all thought they knew the things that dinghy sailors knew, even as the dinghy sailors could knowingly and immediately perceive otherwise.

  4. #74
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Deale, MD, USA
    Posts
    1,794

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    I learned much from sailing a beach cat for a decade. But the two things it taught me better than a yacht were:
    * What it feels like just before things go pear shaped. This translates into all of the things a helmsman must know, without thinking, when it gets really darn rough. You learn sailing for balance and dealing with waves and gusts in a far more intimate way.
    * What it feels like to be overcome by weather, to be beaten, and destroyed, like the "Old Man and the Sea." You learn that all that stuff about "sailing through squalls" is utter bollocks if it is a strong one.

    You really don't want to learn these things on a yacht, and certainly not on a multihull yacht. You don't want your helmsman learning them on your boat. You want to learn them when it costs less, in a safer setting. Point blank, I am never comfortable with a helmsman on any size multihull in fresh conditions (the definition varies with the stability of the yacht) who didn't learn on a beach cat. Of course, if the plan is to motor around in a condomaran, then it doesn't matter.

  5. #75
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Bristol
    Posts
    2,134

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    That 3 x scope they teach you when anchoring, usually isn't enough.

  6. #76
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Greenwich
    Posts
    7,598

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by northcave View Post
    That 3 x scope they teach you when anchoring, usually isn't enough.
    Not my experience - in crowded anchorages there isn’t much choice and we’ve been happily anchored at 3:1 in 40 plus knots. The really big lesson is always making sure the sea bottom will hold you in a blow at your chosen scope by full reverse.

  7. #77
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Bristol
    Posts
    2,134

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by RupertW View Post
    Not my experience - in crowded anchorages there isn’t much choice and we’ve been happily anchored at 3:1 in 40 plus knots. The really big lesson is always making sure the sea bottom will hold you in a blow at your chosen scope by full reverse.
    Sure a good anchor, spade, rochna etc will cope with 3x but a lot won't in 40kts. And yeah perhaps more should be said about setting an anchor. When I first started sailing no one every mentioned anything other than just lob it over the side and use 3x.

  8. #78
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Deale, MD, USA
    Posts
    1,794

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Oh no, not anchoring? Not scope!

  9. #79
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Deale, MD, USA
    Posts
    1,794

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by RupertW View Post
    Not my experience - in crowded anchorages there isn’t much choice and we’ve been happily anchored at 3:1 in 40 plus knots. The really big lesson is always making sure the sea bottom will hold you in a blow at your chosen scope by full reverse.
    How does your reverse thrust compare to rode tension at 40 knots? Have you measured this?

  10. #80
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Benfleet, Essex/Keswick, Cumbria
    Posts
    1,893

    Default Re: Tips you'd like to have known when you first got your boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by SlowlyButSurely View Post
    I agree with this about dinghy sailing. Went sailing with a chap a couple of years ago who was trying to learn to sail on a 40ft AWB. He couldn't tell where the wind was and consequently couldn't helm at all. It's a bit like trying to learn to ride a motorbike without having first learnt to ride a bike.
    And if he went dinghy sailing he would probably be shit at that too.

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