31 January, 2016

Hobie 16

Hobie cat
I sold the Noelex 22 in April 2015. In May, I bought a Hobie 16 which has been on my bucket list for 35 years. I first saw this boat in the early 80's; wanted it but could not afford it at that time. The owner Chris Knight advertised his Hobie in the Salam for MYR13,000. He was the MD of SSB. I was a lowly COE working in the Production department.

COE's and other coolies were not eligible to join the Piasau Boat Club. I wish to learn to sail. So, I decided that the only way, was to buy my own boat. In the end I had a whole fleet: Sunfish, Optimist, Seahopper, 470x3, Laser... Sailing was my hobby for 15 years in Malaysia and another 20 in NZ. I have been on the water for 35 years. This Hobie cat is my 10th boat.
In NZ the water in winter (4*C) was simply too cold for doing capsize drills in a dinghy. My first boat in Hamilton, was a trailer sailer, a 19-ft. Kestrel. It does not capsize but it was excellent for exploring the many lakes at Rotorua. I have also been to Lake Arapuni, Karapiro, Raglan, Port Waikato and of course, my [home waters] at Lake Ngaroto. Here I met a wide variety of other types of trailer yachts and dinghies.

Paper Tiger


There was even a catamaran, a Paper tiger owned by Alex Krayenhoff. The largest boat was an Elliot 7.4 which is just slightly too big for Lake Ngaroto.

The most desirable trailer sailer for me, was a Noelex 22. After two years I sold the Kestrel and bought a Noelex which I kept for more than 15 years.
Noelex 22

Inside the cabin there was room for 2 adults and 2 kids. In fact it was a [floating caravan] for a small family for spending one or two nights on board. For a single hander, there was plenty of space for overnight stays when I explored all the fresh water lakes of the North Island and also harbours at Raglan, Tauranga and Paihia.

centreboard out

In 2011, I overhauled the Nanook, repaired the centre board housing, bought a new VHS radio and a few other things, getting the boat ready for exploring Lake Wanaka and the Abel Tasman national park on the South Island when suddenly my health got in the way. I gave up golf and stopped sailing for a year. It was a big mistake because I became bored and started spending more and more time on the internet. Life is too short for that. Time to revise my bucket list again. Should I get that Harley now?!

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