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RS Tera Sailboat Questions

Q: How does a Tera compared to an Optimist?

A: The Tera is safer, more durable, more versatile and decades newer than an Opti. While Optis are used by kids at the top of the pyramid for hardcore racing - the Tera is much more appropriate for the rest of sailors. In particular, when capsized, the Tera can be self righted, and drains very rapidly - which inspires confidence. An Optimist generally requires a sailor to be assisted by a coach hovering in a power boat, or the sailors to use a bailer to work to empty their boat of water. Modern plastic boats are more durable, with almost zero maintenance - so the Tera is a durable long term asset to a club fleet or a family. The Tera is also easily accepting of two kids and has a reefable mainsail for any condition that sailors are in. Frankly, we continue to wonder why anyone would buy an Optimist for anything but the most advanced, World level serious regattas.

Q: How does the two sail size thing work?

A: The most common sail is the Dacron ‘Sport’ sail. The larger one is the Mylar Pro Sail. This sail offers a significant increase in sail area, and power delivery. All with the same identical mast pieces.

Q: Is there racing of Teras in North America?

A: Yup. From B.C. To San Diego over to Florida and up to Long Island.

Q: Can an adult sail it?

A: Surprisingly well, actually. Seriously. With the Pro Sail, the boat is quite fun for adults up to about 5’9” or so.

Q: What design changes happened in 2019?

A: After a number of years, a mold that is used to produce the boat needed work - since they had to replace it RS made some upgrades to the deck and transom. It’s no faster than the original boats, but a nice systems upgrade for new owners.

Q: Can you furl the sail???

A: The dacron sport sail is fully furlable - from full size down to barely a handkerchief

Q: How wet is the Tera?

A: Most small sailboats are going to be some level of 'wet'. You're close to the water and waves - which is good fun. Some other plastic boats are pretty wet rides - fine in warm water, but not as good in the colder waters of the West Coast oceans and lakes. So, in general the Tera is a rather dry small boat as far as smaller training boats go.