Print Page | Close Window

A family dinghy

Printed From: Yachts and Yachting Online
Category: General
Forum Name: Choosing a boat
Forum Discription: Ask any questions about the sport!
Printed Date: 07 Jul 20 at 3:43am
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 9.665y -

Topic: A family dinghy
Posted By: snowleopard
Subject: A family dinghy
Date Posted: 29 Aug 19 at 6:13pm
I got a good response last time I asked about boat options here - I ended up with a Finn which was fun to sail though I struggled with the weight ashore. Sadly that has now gone but I'm looking ahead to a new style of sailing next year. 

I'm looking for a boat to teach the grandchildren 12, 10, 8, 6) to sail but I want to be able to handle it on my own while they are at school. To get them keen it shouldn't be too challenging but quick enough to engage their interest. I reckon that means a PN in the range 1000 - 1120.  It needs a single trapeze and a spinnaker to make it fun for them but I must have somewhere to sit for my old knees. Once they are in their teens they should be able to take it out without adults.

I'm not too well versed with the modern stuff like RS but, as long as it's not a shallow dish that requires kneeling in light airs, I could be persuaded. Of the classic designs, a 420 might fit the bill. 505 or Fireball would be fun but I don't want to scare them off.

I used to have a classic 14 (symmetric spi, single trapeze) which would fit the bill but they are hen's teeth these days.

I quite like the look of a Laser 2. I know the class is moribund but it meets the criteria and they're cheap as chips.

Over to you!

One hull good, two hulls better.

Posted By: Wee Man
Date Posted: 30 Aug 19 at 7:43am
420 is a great dinghy, very forgiving and easily managed ashore with all the toys to learn trapezing, spinnaker. loads of them around at whatever price you want to pay & plenty of people with spares.

Nacra Infusion F18

Posted By: Gordon 1430
Date Posted: 30 Aug 19 at 7:50am
a 2000 whilst a bit heavy does have a trapeze option and is a very suitable boat to teach in. Also if its honking they go very well and push lots of water so feel really fast.

Phantom 1430

Posted By: snowleopard
Date Posted: 30 Aug 19 at 8:00am
Just to clarify -  2000, Laser 2000 and RS 2000 are the same boat? Or have I read the searches wrong?

One hull good, two hulls better.

Posted By: GybeFunny
Date Posted: 30 Aug 19 at 10:28am
Laser Vago?

Posted By: Gordon 1430
Date Posted: 30 Aug 19 at 2:17pm
Laser dropped the 2000 and now RS build them and its just called the 2000. the RS200 completely different boat with no trapeze option. I am told the Trapeze is just for fun but I am sure someone has a PY number if you wanted to race like that.

Phantom 1430

Posted By: jeffers
Date Posted: 02 Sep 19 at 12:35pm
Originally posted by snowleopard

Just to clarify -  2000, Laser 2000 and RS 2000 are the same boat? Or have I read the searches wrong?

They are the same boat. I dont think RS call it the RS2000 though just the 2000.

If you fit the trap option make sure you add lowers, the mast is very flexible!

D-Zero GBR 74

Posted By: andymck
Date Posted: 02 Sep 19 at 8:11pm
All but the 12 year old are a bit small to trapeze as yet.
The 2k is a great stable sail in all weather platform. I would recommend one for the ages of your grand kids.
The two most popular trapeze boats with the 12 to 14 age group at our club are the 3000, which is similar but better sorted than a laser 2, but with an asymmetric. Or the much underrated RS500. After that they like the 420, but smaller ones struggle with the higher deck to get trapezing to start.


Andy Mck

Posted By: Mike7722
Date Posted: 03 Sep 19 at 4:11pm
The laser 2 is a good boat, although the 3000 looks simpler with the asymmetric.
The 2000 is a bit heavy, although the jib is furlable if it is windy. When it is windy they go quickly from what I have heard, but I don't sail them much.
Nothing to say about the others.

Posted By: snowleopard
Date Posted: 03 Sep 19 at 4:29pm
Almost all of the 21st century dinghies have a shallow-dish style hull which means that unless you have enough wind for hiking/trapezing, you are stuck with having to squat/kneel in the middle. That is really too much for my 140+ year old knees! The Laser 1 was great from that POV (in the days when I could get under the boom while tacking). That's one of the big virtues of the 420. Boats like the Enterprise and even my International 14 were reasonable for sitting though I hated bobbing up and down between the side thwarts and side deck/gunwale in variable conditions.

I'd prefer an asymmetric for ease of setting/furling and reaching power but I'll live with a conventional type.

One hull good, two hulls better.

Posted By: Mike7722
Date Posted: 03 Sep 19 at 8:57pm
Having re-read your criteria, I think a feva would work, although they don't have a trapeze. Do you intend to take them out one at a time or multiple at once?
The feva is easy to singlehand and has a small, perfectly manageable kite which makes them go quickly.

Posted By: Pewit
Date Posted: 14 Sep 19 at 3:31pm
 One hull good, two hulls better 

Three hulls best!

I think the boat that matches your criteria for something that's quick, can be handled solo and can take the grandchildren is the Weta Trimaran - and it's been approved for both the World Masters Games and Paralympics so even those with limited mobility can sail it. (I have a dodgy back, one of our local fleet members has duff knees from skiff sailing, another has a wonky wrist from work).

It has enough buoyancy for 3 adults (440lbs / 200Kg) or a bunch of kids and while it's an asymetric, the kite can be easily furled to depower and power up as required. There's also a furling jib available which is used by some owners with young kids or mobility issues to depower quickly if the wind gets up.

The Weta is very stable but planes upwind at around 10-12 knots and off the breeze up to 20 knots. It's really hard to capsize but easy to right if you do just by flooding a hull and sitting on it. It tacks like a monohull because of the daggerboard and no abs of steel required - you just lie on the tramps or sit on the floats. It provides all the fun of skiff sailing without the drama.

The new foam-core hulls and carbon components mean it only weights 120Kg fully rigged and the New Square Top Mainsail means it has over 21 SqM of sail area from Norths which helps with launch/retrieval, light wind or fully laden performance. But it's very forgiving and I've raced mine in winds over 35 knots - and righted it without assistance. It stows in the space of a Laser but only takes 20 minutes to rig." rel="nofollow - There's one on Apolloduck in Hampshire for 7K and my old friend, Patrick, came 4th at Camel Week with an older boat he's recently acquired. 


More at" rel="nofollow -

Posted By: snowleopard
Date Posted: 14 Sep 19 at 4:56pm
Thanks for that. Having sailed a tri (albeit 40 ft, not 15) I'm not prejudiced against multis as you can see from my signature. On the lake I plan to use, a Weta would be towards the back of the fast handicap fleet - they have foiling moths and asymmetric international canoes! A hull weight of 100kg makes it pretty heavy for one person.  A search brought up this thread:" rel="nofollow -   which I'm ploughing my way through. I like the concept, particularly having a footwell as opposed to sitting on a tramp with a cat.  

Having sailed offshore cats and tris where the latter is generally faster and lighter, I struggle to adjust to the idea that in the dinghy world, the reverse is true. My 40' cat weighed 5 tons and cruised at 10 knots, my tri of the same size weighed 3.5 tons and cruised at 14 knots.

I'll certainly give it some serious thought. I see there is one for sale at £2,300 at present.

One hull good, two hulls better.

Posted By: Pewit
Date Posted: 14 Sep 19 at 10:36pm
Patrick Lyon is a former International Canoe Sailor but got fed up with swimming - the Weta is much more forgiving.

The Weta isnít as quick as a Moth or IC - but it doesnít crash and burn like one either and you can take it out when they stay ashore. In most handicap fleets we compete with Fireballs and "slower" skiffs like the 29er and B14 - although the latter has a larger kite and gets away downwind.

It comes with a lightweight aluminium trolley and as most components are carbon, the heaviest component you have to lift are the 12Kg floats when you slot them in the main hull. The carbon mast comes in 2 sections and weighs 6Kg. There is also a hinged mast step available and a chest harness which supports your torso and makes it really comfortable for Marathon events - they have been used for the 300 mile Everglades Challenge, Texas 200 and others.

Rigging is easy with a bit of practice

I race in a mixed fleet on Sydney Harbour and I won the summer series last year. Iím usually up the pointy end unless it goes really light and choppy but Iíve also competed in light-wind events when the Moths canít get airborne and you can use the Gennaker as a Code Zero to keep moving.


There's also the Wetaforum and Weta Wiki with a Used Weta Buyers Guide at  http:///" rel="nofollow - http:///

Edit: I've just realised you're at Liskard (I think) Patrick and I both have places at Rock and there are four Wetas based there. 

Posted By: Pewit
Date Posted: 16 Sep 19 at 4:22pm
Originally posted by snowleopard

I'll certainly give it some serious thought. I see there is one for sale at £2,300 at present.

That cheapo boat in Scarborough has been online for 10 years (we think) and probably scraped from eBay. The website business address is fake too so it's probably a scam  - but I'm unsure what the scam is.

There's a real boat avaiable on Apolloduck" rel="nofollow -

There's a big fleet of them in France (the French invented the multihull apparently) so another option might be to import one from there. (before the Brexit deadline!) 

The French have an online forum here" rel="nofollow -

There are 2 Wetas for sale on Le Bon Coin which is the French equivilent of Loot/Apolloduck" rel="nofollow -

Hope this helps

Posted By: rb_stretch
Date Posted: 18 Oct 19 at 3:15pm
For a not too dissimilar brief I had an Albacore. Definitely a sit in boat in the lighter winds and I've sailed singlehanded and with the full family of 5. It is lighter than the 2000 and faster without the complication of a spinnaker.

However given your declared age I don't think any boat will be light enough to handle/singlehand easily. I suspect you are better off getting two cheaper boats that better fit the different requirements.

Posted By: snowleopard
Date Posted: 16 Jan 20 at 4:18pm
Well I bought a very cheap 420 in pretty good nick. The cockpit seems very deep and comfortable but it will be a while before I can try it on the water. I'll see how it goes; at least I can't lose much if it turns out not to work.

One hull good, two hulls better.

Print Page | Close Window

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.665y -
Copyright ©2001-2010 Web Wiz -