Weta Trimaran Review - Jay Winick

July 27th, 2018

I’m a long time sailor who got his first taste of sailing in a fair sized lake on Manitoulin Island in Ontario Canada as a kid. The first boat that I ever soloed was a Force 5 from AMF at 12 years old. It was a lot of boat, with a lot of sail and anything more than a moderate breeze was too much to handle. Nonetheless when there was a storm, the wind turned on shore and I’d luff the sail out for 20 minutes for the thrill of surfing back in. That experience was one that I never forgot.

Fast forward 40 years and trying to relive those memories from youth I bought a now ancient Force 5 for a song I wanted that feeling again. Unfortunately that boat (and this sailor) hasn’t aged well. A confirmed monohull sailor I thought it would be a lot more fun than it turned out to be. In the really good wind the Force 5 requires Herculean abs and any kind of rolling seas makes the fear of windward capsize a reality when hiked out. Not to mention fighting fatigue upwind and stability issues downwind.

I looked at a number of boats like the RS Aero, but after seeing the physical exertion and watching endless high-wind capsize videos I kept looking. Finally on Youtube I came across the Weta trimaran and my interest was piqued. I managed to pickup hull #163 for a very good price from people that really love sailing but wanted something more “couples” oriented. I’ve now owned her for almost 3 months, and I’ve sailed her at least 5 days a week (sometimes more than once a day).

In light winds, she moves very much like any other small monohull, she tacks like one with the added benefit of being able to lay back on the trampolines and sail by telltales and the sun. I’ve puttered about enjoying the quiet but a little gust here and there and the gurgling of displacement vanishes as she planes very easily.

The real fun is when most sailors don’t go out. Give her 10+ knots and she’ll give you get a ride like a 60s sports car – low to the water and raring to go. Gust don’t want to knock you down like a monohull, instead their transformed into acceleration. Overpowered? Unlike a monohull where capsize is imminent you just turn downwind slightly and she flattens out and you get a boost of speed. Want to carve a gybe like a windsurfer? It does it, and with no boom, it’s a rip-roaring affair.

Of course the best thing is how she handles. The helm tells you everything, and when you’re trimmed correctly, only a couple fingers on the tiller is plenty. I like to get on a close reach and go upwind with my hair on fire. Seated on the padded Ama support, hiking out, spray in your face it’s fun like sailing should be. While there’s strength required to sail her hard, you needn’t be an Olympic athlete to keep her trimmed even in 15+ knots of wind. I can sail her for hours and still want to go for more.

There are a lot of multihulls out there, but nothing like the Weta. Thanks Roger and Chris for designing a boat that gives the fun of a skiff without circus performer acrobatics. The only negative is, when is the t-foil daggerboard retro-fit coming? (please say I’m first).

By Jay Winick

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