West Coast canadian newbe here

Hello My name is Howard and I have years of sailing experience. Retired now without a boat and thought RC sailing would be a fun hobby. Looking for advice on what boat ( and size) is a good starter boat.
Want one that can be used on fresh and salt water.
Have a peddle kayak and hope to marry the two hobby’s together
Thanks in advance

Hi Howard,

Where are you? There is a good group on Vancouver Island sailing IOMs. You would be most welcome to join us.


Seadog (Howard)
Welcome! I am confident you will find RC sailing to be great fun and very satisfying as well. I would ask a few questions. There are many good choices out there. If you can provide a few bits of information we maybe able to get you closer to the kinds of boats best suited for you.

You mentioned you are likely to be using the boat in Seawater as well as in fresh water. Whatever boat you start with needs to be seaworthy and watertight, especially in salt water applications.

My first question is what kind of budget are you considering? Do you like building things out of kits or do you think you’d like to start with a boat that is pretty much ready to go? We refer to those as RTR or “ready to run” in this case ready to sail.

The conditions you’ll be sailing in are a factor - What kind of wind speeds will you be dealing with? Worst case and normal conditions would be helpful to know.

Sailing in the ocean often suggests heavier conditions than those found on ponds or smaller bodies of water. There a few smaller boats that can handle heavy conditions, one of the best known is the Micro Magic - Length: 530 mm Width: 180 mm. Another amazing rough water boat is the CR 914 (Length 914 mm) Sadly the MM is out of production, but there are few still out there for smart shoppers. CR 914’s are readily available in kit form or ready sail or anywhere in between. I posted a picture of a Micro Magic and a CR914 to give a sense of these two terrific boats. I also posted a picture of a 1 meter Seawind RTR. There are many others to consider once we know a bit more about your situation.

One meter boats are very popular and generally can handle some very difficult conditions. As time permits post your answers here. Once those are posted I (we) can get back to shortly there after.


Hi Boomer
My budget is about 300 to 500.00 for a RTR boat but for the right boat may go more, I am currently looking at a Dragon Force , I am retired and travel a lot with my 5th wheel RV. Live in Powell river which has good access to large lakes and the ocean. Want a boat that will handle some rough stuff as the winds here normally 15 to 20 but come up quickly and are quite strong a lot of the time I also have a Hobie mirage (peddle) kayak and hope to marry the two hobby’s
I will check out the boats you mentioned on the net.
Thanks for your help

Seadog, although I am a proponent of the SeaWind (Class Secretary) and the Micro Magic the most useful advice I can give is to find out what boats are sailed by local clubs/fleets and get one of those unless you will be sailing by yourself all the time. Sailing alone is restful and enjoyable but the real fun comes in sailing with a fleet of similar boats. If you have questions about the SeaWind check out the Forum below or the SeaWind COA web site, links to it can also be found in the Forum.
Good sailing!

Thanks for your reply. There is another really terrific boat to consider. The Nirvana is as close to a "turn key"or “ready to sail” boat as you are likely to find. Once it arrives, in very short order - no more than 30 minutes you are ready to go sailing. I am not aware of any boat of this or similar size that is as easy to assemble and to transport as the Nirvana ll. It is so well designed, a monkey could assemble one, (well that may be overstating it a bit) but my wife can do it! It comes complete with a radio 2.4 ghz radio and receiver. The Nirvana has a carbon fiber mast and booms, comes with durable and functional sails.

The Nirvana does well in light to moderate weather conditions, doesn’t draw as much water as some larger boats, and is ideal for first time sailors. It is fun, fast and forgiving. Each time I sell one, I get another one. I actually miss sailing the darned things. They are a handsome yacht - fashioned in the likeness of a racing sloop. It is ruggedly built, but not heavy and with very little maintenance, it will provide years of fun. Another terrific factor is they have good resale value.

In contrast to other larger and more expensive boats, a well tuned Nirvana, with a good skipper at the sticks, can give many of them a run for their money. One of the more interesting facts about these boats is that they are so well designed they are very simple for a new sailor to master, but complex enough to keep the attention of advanced sailors as well.

Many Nirvana owners add their own refinements to their boats - some for the sake of appearance and others for functionality. They are great right out of the box and really don’t need any changes.

Here in the US these boats are very popular with thousands of them being sold over the years. The North American distributor is sailrc.com they also handle Lasers and Seawinds. I am pretty sure they ship world wide so if your interested check out their web site. The Nirvana has it’s own “Class One Design Racing” in the AMYA and is a great boat to get you started in club racing. I posted a few photos for you to take a look at.

I have quite of few RC sailboats and continue to enjoy sailing my Nirvana. I suggest you check out sailrc.com under Nirvana. They have a sale starting today offering 100 of the 2014 models for $249.00 including shipping to the lower 48 states. They could give you price shipped to Canada by contacting them at info@sailrc.com

They retail for $349.00 so this is very attractive offer. They will go very fast at that price so if interested I’d suggest checking them out. Also there is a very active forum on Nirvana’s at http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=794969&page=708
Good to the first page so you can read some of the details listed there. This is a very popular forum as you will see. Lots of dialog and pictures and tips. The Blue boaat is mine and the yellow one is a buddies. Both have a few personal touches done to them. If you check out the Nirvana thread you can see countless pictures.

The DF boat you are considering has become a very popular boat in a short period of time. The Nirvana is a bit more durable. I don’t have a DF so I can only compare the two by what I have read about the DF product. Both winners in my view. Both are attractively priced. I have two Seawinds in my fleet so I guess that tells you something, but I really don’t think you can go wrong with any of the boats we are discussing. It really is a personal choice.