Wharram Builders and Friends

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Hi All, 

Just wondering if there is anyone out there with a Hitia 17 who could give me some information on the type of sail rig they use. Im considering the wing sail, and would love to hear which of the two they would recommend, and what are the benefits, if any, of upgrading to the wing sail rig...

Many Thanks,

Josh :)

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Hey Michael,

I'm trying to gather performance data on Hitia 17s.  Can you specify how fast your is with the sprit rig, e.g. on a beam reach in some amount of wind?


Scott in Seattle

I once meassured 14.6 knots with a handheld GPS. This was however on a broad reach in absolutely! flat water and overpowered (two people on board with a total of 150 kg holding the hull  in the water). Wind between 16 and 18 knots. I think of you next year and get some more scientific data :-)

Hi Josh,

I built my Hitia 17 last summer, initially for some cruising on the Baltic. I went for the wing (gaff) option and am very happy I did. I have only very briefly sailed a Hitia with the sprit option. From my experience, some of the pros and cos of the wing sail are:


No long spar to handle out on the water if you want to reef / drop the main

Flexibility on reef points (I added another one in, so I can reduce the main more than the designed set up would allow, which proved useful and wouldn't be possible with the sprit)

Maybe a bit more control over the set and shape of the sail


Longer mast

More fiddly to set up when initially rigging the boat

And a little warning: I broke quite a bit of nice ash and douglas fir trying to bend it into the shape called for to make the gaff jaws as shown in the wharram designs, and then ended up reworking the design myself. Don't know if this was down to my choice of timber, poor technique or the design not being ideal.  Anyway, my revised one seems to have worked out fine.  



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