A new Respect for Sailors of smaller Boats

Discussion in 'Sunfish Talk' started by Billy WIlliams, Aug 2, 2014.

  1. Billy WIlliams

    Billy WIlliams New Member

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    Hi fellow sailors, I've been sailing for about twenty years now and have owned five different sailboats 25' and under. But just two weeks ago I bought a Sunfish, a nice little "Toy" boat. I never spent this much time overboard and "In The Drink" in all my 30+ years Kayaking the rivers of West Virginia and North Carolina. I'm 60 years old and thought I would just get this little boat to play with since I retired and moved here to Florida. I've got to learn to sail all over again. I still sail a 16' and a 21' now, but this Sunfish thing is an eyeopener. My hat is off to all you folks that can handle these little rockets the way you do, my hats off, my sunglasses and anything else that was not tied to me. I'm having a real good time, just like when I got my first sailboat, a 25', just staying a lot wetter. Hope to see some of you in the Intracoastal Waterway here in Melbourne Fl., I'll be the wet old guy climbing onto the dagger board.
     

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  2. imported_Andy

    imported_Andy Andy

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    Welcome! Yea, they're kind of addictive, but nothing but fun!
     
  3. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    I moved "down" to a Sunfish after owning three catamarans—including a 18'x10' Matrix, 18'x8' Hobie Formula, and a 20'x10' Tornado. Had some fun, but Sunfish are a lot faster to rig, more fun for the dollar, easier to right, and cheaper to repair. 'Should have gone to Sunfish years ago.
     
  4. baseman

    baseman On the Water

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    Welcome! Any idea what kind of boat the sail came from? It's sleeved like a Phantom sail, but that's not a Phantom logo (at least I don't think it is).
     
  5. Billy WIlliams

    Billy WIlliams New Member

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    I'm pretty sure it's from an Aqua Finn. As luck would have it, when I bought the boat, the fellow have another sail exactly like it , new, that he gave me. I just bought a Laser yesterday, hull only, so I'm going to try the Sunfish rig on it and see what happens... maybe I can get by with this type rig until I can find the proper rigging for a Laser.
     
  6. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    I bought a Laser about ten years ago, and found it too "tender"—loaned it to my BIL for a sail—who got about a ¼-mile, when he capsized it. :p
     
  7. Jon Young

    Jon Young New Member

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    Welcome aboard! I also recently downsized from an O'Day Daysailer II to a Sunfish. There's work to do before I can splash her, hopefully before the weather gets too unfriendly here in Tennessee.
     
  8. Throwdown

    Throwdown Member

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    I just finished a keelboat sailing class, my only thought's are why would someone sail a keelboat when you could be out on a sunfish???
     
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  9. Kitty

    Kitty New Member

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    Aye Billy
    Don't feel so bad...I have had my Sunfish for over 20 years...sailed in most kinds of wind and water including salt. But I recently waxed the deck...whooosh ..fell in the drink 3 times... never happened before. I am older than you are!!! Then I got "smart" and sat in the cockpit. I read that "mop and glow" is a "non-skid" type of wax...so I scrubbed the deck and got the wax off and put m and g on it...I will test it tomorrow...if there is any wind and see what happens..I was laughing underwater at my folly.
    Kitty
     
  10. MtlNdo

    MtlNdo Member

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    Hello Billy & welcome to this awesome forum.
    Take a look at this you tube video I posted almost 3 years now.
    The response has been extremely positive even in languages that I needed Google translate to help me understand.
    I got hooked a few years ago. and still love them.
     
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  11. MtlNdo

    MtlNdo Member

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    You might want to set it to 1080P and turn up the volume.
     
  12. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    After 3:00, the clew catches a wave, and he falls in. (Capsized?) I adjust the gooseneck to keep the clew "high" for that reason. (Cold lake water here). :(
     
  13. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    That works for a regular Sunfish, but the video shows a Super Sunfish; there's is no gooseneck adjustment. However, loosening the vang will help. In addition, keeping the boat flat during maneuvers will minimize the boom catching the water.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2014
  14. baseman

    baseman On the Water

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    I was talking to a someone a few days ago about sailing. He owns a 40 something ft. boat moored in the Caribbean. He told me if you can sail a Sunfish, you can sail anything. Basically, he told me these little boats are hard to sail. I don't agree.
     
  15. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    I don't agree either. A 40 footer (or for that matter any boat over 20' or so) requires a lot of skills that one doesn't need on a small dinghy.
    I wouldn't know how to empty the head (and keep my nose closed at the same time)
    I wouldn't know how to maintain the engine
    I don't know how to enter a slip without making a fool of myself
    And I don't even know how to properly wrap a line around a winch

    So sad ;)


     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2014
  16. baseman

    baseman On the Water

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    Let's see, big boat vs. small boat
    Big boat. Emptying the head. Just like an RV. Go to a shore station and pump out the holding tank. Small boat. Not going there.
    Big boat. Maintaining the engine. Most are diesels that don't require much maintenance although changing the oil could be an interesting task. Small boat. What engine? I was thinking of putting a bow thruster on my Viking so I don't have to paddle when the wind dies.
    Big boat. Entering a slip. Easy as a power boat. It's like steering a sailboat with no wind. Small boat. You're 50 ft from the dock nicely drifting in and the wind shifts. Nuf said.
    Big boat. Winches are easy. Small boat. Mount a small winch on the deck to raise the sail. You will get comments.
     
  17. Billy WIlliams

    Billy WIlliams New Member

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    Thanks for the video, I've sailed bigger boats so long and really enjoy them, the peace and quite at night and so on, but the the Sunfish is just FUN, I love it all. Thanks again. That is a Wonderful boat you have, you did a real good job on it.
     
  18. Billy WIlliams

    Billy WIlliams New Member

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    I just picked up another Sunfish a few days ago from an"Old Sailor", we, well, he talked for a hour or more about the ol days of sailing and racing, it was very entertaining. I love to listen to the stories sailors have to share, I'm collecting a few stories of my own, (there may be a book in there somewhere). I also just finished some repair work on a Laser I picked up for $30 , just the hull Laser with Lateen Rig.jpg 100_2130.jpg . I took the rig from the newer Sunfish and put it on the Laser hull for a test run today. I have created a Monster, a FrankenLaser, or FrankenFish, I don't know. Anyway it was fun, that's all that counts.....
     
  19. MtlNdo

    MtlNdo Member

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    Thank you for your kind words Billy.
     
  20. cnovark

    cnovark Member

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    I love my SF and I love keelboat sailing but to me they are very different experiences. I think it's physically harder to sail a SF as they are athletic little boats (by which I mean ducking the boom, hiking...I know they are not athletic compared to a Laser or a skiff or something). Keelboats have a lot more controls to play with (jib! Winches, vang, possibly electronic chart stuff). I love sailing in pretty much anything, but it's a different experience.
     

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