We just love this! 

My nine soon to be ten year old son enjoys sailing with me! That’s a good thing, as in a couple years he will probably think I’m the dumbest/nerdiest/uncoolest father on the planet and he won’t want to be seen anywhere near me.

I want to build a “kid’s” boat for him to sail, but I don’t want it to be a dishwasher packing crate (Opti) or some similar thing. Ideally, it would be a strip planked homebuilt O’pen Bic type “cool” boat. He’s watched the O’pen Bics at the club, and thinks they are cool. Given the impending recession and Bush-league economic disaster, I think spending >$3K on an O’pen Bic is irresponsible when I expect things to get much worse financially.

He’s been spoiled performance-wise – sailing with me in skiffish boats has set his speed and excitement thresholds too high to sell him on much less. He whoops and yells like it is a carnival ride when we’re blasting around together.

Here are my initial requirements:

– Easily rightable by a 90-100 pound child – this also means it does NOT have to be keelboat stable
– Light enough to move around by a child (50-60 pounds hull weight)
– Big enough so he could take out a friend
– Simple to rig, sail and de-rig
– Fast enough to plane
– Unstayed mast
– “Cool” enough looking
– Self bailing, open transom, easy to enter from water
– Fun enough that he’ll let me sail my singlehand skiff by myself!
– Winter garage project
– Generally light wind venue with little real waves
– Don’t care about racing or an established class & society – he’s a loner with no “pack animal” instincts (comes by it honestly)

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