SAILING A HOBIE WAVE
Safe and sane guideline for
the beginner; and an easy review for the experienced.
BALANCING THE BOAT
When sailing, sit on the upwind
side of the boat (wind on your back) just in front of the tiller,
facing the sail. Balance your weight further outboard as the boat
begins to tip or heel over with the wind in the sails. Tuck one foot
under the hiking strap for balance. Use your hand that is forward to
hold and control the mainsheet. Use your hand that is aft to steer.
Steer the boat by pushing the tiller away
from you to turn towards the wind. Pull the tiller towards you to
turn away from the wind. Keep the movement of the tiller to a
minimum to prevent over-steering. This will help you keep the boat
moving in a straight line as you pay attention to other watercraft
and sail adjustments.
Face the sail in order to
pay close attention to the trim or adjustment of the sail. When the
front of the sail, just behind the mast, luffs or flutters in the
breeze, you lose power. To start moving, pull the sail in just
enough to stop the sail from luffing. There are also short ribbons
hanging on either side of the sail. Follow the diagram of sail and
course adjustments using the "tell tails" to get the most
performance out of the sail for all angles of sailing. The tell
tails react to air flowing over the sail and will help you see that
the sail is pulled in too tight or too loosely. If you pull the sail
too tight you will stall the sail power. Ease the sail out until it
luffs, then pull it in just a little until it stops luffing. You
will adjust the trim whenever the wind changes direction or you
Refer to the sail trim diagram for
approximate sail settings for the different points of sail or
directions you will be sailing. Note the "can't sail zone". You
cannot sail in this direction due to the fact that the sail will
luff constantly when pointed into the wind. If you get stuck in
irons (or stop pointed into the wind) you will need to reverse the
rudder and push the sail forward to back-wind it.
This will back the boat up.
Reverse the rudders and let the sail out until the boat is
positioned more across the wind (close reach). Then you can
correctly trim the sail and start moving forward.
To tack or turn the boat into and
across the wind to the opposite direction (also known as "coming
about"), follow the points of sail guide and take the boat to the
close hauled point of sail. This is when you are nearly 35 degrees
from sailing straight into the wind. With the boat moving forward
and not stalling, push the tiller away from you slowly. When the
boat is pointing straight into the wind the boat will become level.
Ease the mainsheet trim out just a little. At this time move your
body to the other side of the boat, switch hands with tiller and
mainsheet and begin to bring the rudder back to straight. The crew
should move across the trampoline at the same time. As the boat
comes across the wind and falls off onto
the opposite, close hauled point of sail, bring the tiller all the
way back to the straight position and pull the mainsail back in for
the proper sail trim. If you stall pointing into the wind and you
cannot steer the boat, refer back to the sail power description
concerning getting stuck in irons.
sailing downwind, the turn from one point of sail across to the
other is called a jibe. The jibe is completed by turning away from
the wind (falling off) to the opposite point of sail rather than
into the wind as when tacking. Care must be taken when attempting a
jibe as the boat will be at full power and you cannot easily
de-power it without turning back into the wind. Also, be aware that
the boat will be less stable in this maneuver as the sail will now
have to swing clear across from fully out one side of the boat to
fully out the other.
start a jibe, turn the boat away from the wind and let the sail out
slowly. Keep the turn going at a steady rate and begin pulling the
sail back in as the boat nears the straight downwind direction. This
will help prevent the sail from slamming all the way across when the
sail fills from the opposite side. Duck below the sail to avoid
getting hit as the wind fills the sail from the opposite side and
swings across the boat. Attempt to control the speed of the sail
while it crosses the deck by maintaining some tension on the
mainsheet. Then ease the mainsheet out quickly as the boat turns
past the downwind direction onto the new point of sail. Trim the
sail correctly for the desired point of sail.
LAUNCHING THE BOAT
Launching the boat is easiest
when the boat can be pointed into the wind to keep it de-powered and
floated into deep enough water to lower the rudders. It is possible
to launch in shallow water with the rudders partly up. Try not to
steer with too much force on the rudders until you lock them in the
down position. Keep the sail loose and trimmed out completely until
you can power up and steer away from any obstacle. Trim the sail in
quickly to get the boat moving forward and steer away from the wind
slightly to prevent stalling into the wind.
launching from a beach where the wind is blowing from the beach
towards the water you simply keep the boat pointed into the wind.
Drift backwards with the rudders in the up position and your weigh
towards the front of the boat. Stay forward as the boat drifts into
deeper water.You can hold the sail out to catch wind backwards to
increase reverse speed. Then move to the rear and lower the rudders.
It will be easiest to lower only one rudder while moving backwards.
Then lower the other when the boat begins to move forward again. Be
aware of the intended direction you wish to sail when lowering the
rudder and steer the boat as the rudder drops into the water. There
will be a lot of force on the rudder to turn one way or the other
when going backwards. Plan ahead and steer the rudders so that they
will be pointing in that direction before dropping it into the
water. Steer the boat while going backwards so the bow turns away
from the wind and toward the direction you wish to sail. As the sail
begins to fill with wind, the boat will slow then begin to move
forward. Trim in the sail and off you go.
RIGHTING THE BOAT
If you tip the boat over,
stay with the boat. The boat will not sink and is easy to right. It
is not necessary, but it is easier, to right the boat when the bow
and the mast are pointed into the wind as in the diagram.
There will be less wind resistance and better control in
this position. Be sure the mainsheet is released, then swim around
to the bottom of the boat. Skipper and crew should climb up on the
hull and stand up. Using the righting line, skipper and crew pull
the righting line that is against the upper hull and hold the line
while slowly leaning back away from the trampoline. Lean to
approximately 45 degrees for best leverage. As the mast and sail
lift out of the water and the upper hull begins to drop back into
the water, drop down to your knees then into the water. Hold onto
the righting line near the crossbar or the crossbar itself near the
hull that you were standing on. This will prevent the hull from
being lifted into the air by momentum which could cause the boat to
capsize once again. Be well aware of the hull and crossbar coming
down over your head. Holding the crossbar or righting line will also
insure that you remain with the boat when it is righted. Climb
aboard and continue sailing.
Docking the Wave properly will prevent
damage. Always dock and rig on the leeward side of a dock (the side
the wind reaches last). Come in slowly and always be aware of the
wind direction so you can properly de-power the boat when needed.
The stronger the wind the more difficult the docking will be. Until
you feel confident, you may want to practice with a friend who will
remain on the dock and help slow you down if necessary.
Landing on a beach is simple. The
idea is to reach the beach in the point of sail nearest straight
into the wind as possible. This will assure that you can properly
de-power the sail once beached.
Approaching a beach when the wind is blowing from the beach
out towards the water will require some planning so that you
maintain power. Turn into shore just before the hulls or rudders
touch bottom. Plan so the final tack towards the location you choose
to land is the tack that is nearest straight into the wind. Get a
little closer to the beach than you need on the previous tack to
account for wind shifts in direction and speed. This will give you a
little room for error. This will allow you to point a little further
away from the wind after the tack to gain speed before heading up
into the beach to de-power at the last moment.
approaching a beach when the wind is blowing onshore, sail in
towards the beach from either side of the landing spot. Sail in just
short of touching the bottom with the rudders. Allow some distance
to turn the boat out towards the water and into the wind just out
from the landing spot. Turn sharply to head into the wind and stall
the boat. Raise the rudders and drift back onto the
keep the boat pointed into the wind while beached and keep the sail
trimmed out and un-cleated.