I have a 1970s Sunfish, that I just bought. I took it sailing on a lake when the wind was light. The daggerboard stayed extended 1 inch above the deck. I couldn't keep it down. The metal clip on the daggerboard is in place. How can I keep the daggerboard down in place?
I had the same problem with my daggerboard. It doesn't matter which way the daggerboard is installed. I suspect that the metal clip is not bowed enough, making it too narrow for the daggerboard trunk, so the clip doesn't grib well. Installing a daggerboard retaining strap was the only solution that worked for me. Laser Performance sells a daggerboard retainer strap for about $20, but all it is is a bungee with two custom clips. You can use a $2 long shock cord, stretched from the bow handle, back around the daggerboard, then forward again to the bow handle.
At the risk of sounding like a doomphus I will admit that I have a bit of difficulty figuring things like this out and sometimes getting the description/s to match the diagram/s.
I've got a ?'73 SF with just a plain db and a useless clip (I guess I could try to reintroduce more of a curve to the clip?). There isn't any hole in the thing for shock cord to go. So, if I get Geophizz, I can just get some ? 3/16 shock cord and make a loop that ties to the bow 'andle and snugs against the aft end of the wooden DB (friction).
So, this will then keep the db in position -- partway up, all up, etc.?
Then, (ahem) do I also hook on a leash or keeper to keep it from floating away should I capsize? Can I make a hole in the wooden DB? Top cap or vertical wood near top?
I see that one site sells black shock cord for pretty cheap LINK:
Nothing magic, brummel clips (aka sister clips) are just a quick way to hook together two ends of a line. A loop tied in one end and a snap clip tied on the other works too. Heck, a square knot works, it's just a pain to untie at the end of the day.
In the olden days, many of us used shock cord from one side of the boat to the other to position the wooden board (by friction, mostly). We used clips at the ends to secure the elastic to the aluminum rubrails.
As Wayne already wrote, it took some experimentation to find the right tension to make this system work.
Another thing I did on my boat was to add furniture foot padding to the inside of the dagger board trunk that took out all the slop between the board and the trunk, which allowed for a lot less tension with the bungee cord and held the board in any position .
I got some 1/4" white bungie shock cord at ACE a while back. I guess 3/16th is what the real sailors <g> use. I'm going to try the 1/4" and fiddle with it. I suppose I sail conservatively, so maybe I'll never need it. I have been a bit clumsy though when I've had to quickly tack and had to move my butt cushion, the tiller extension and the db around all at once.
If the bungie doesn't grip enough, I might add some goop crud (marine goop, silicone like stuff) to give it some grip in that area.
That's just what's happening, the lateral resistance that transforms the wind's thrust into forward motion has been reduced so the boat slips sideways and/or turns down wind rather than following the course you are attempting to steer.
Because of the difference in pressure between the two sides of the sail created by the Bernouli effect, the boat is pulled in the direction of A. If we break down A into two parts, we get two “forces” in the directions of B and C. Since the keel (underwater wing) at the bottom of the boat checks the “force” that tries to move the boat in the direction of C, the boat has no choice but to move in the direction of B.
In stronger wind, the boat side-slips or gets turned off the wind. At lower wind speeds the boat stalls in irons at a lower angle to the wind direction. Both these conditions make beating to windward arduous with many low angle tacks. The boat refuses to point higher than the low to mid region of what would normally be considered close reaching. Now the upper region of close reaching has become the boat's new pinching limit.
Close-hauled: To sail a boat as close to the wind as possible.
Pinching: Entering the no-sail-zone or sailing just on the boarder to it.
There are two issues, heel and sideslip. If the wind is below a certain threshold you will sideslip, above that threshold the boat cannot react fast enough so, lacking some of the below water resistance, you will heel over more rapidly.
The normal reaction is to let out the sail or head into the wind or both. Your reactions are quicker than the boat's in most circumstances.
On a race course it would make a difference, but if you're sailing recreationally, I think you'd be fine.
I have an analogous situation that may provide some insight. I have the "Barrington" wood daggerboard, and most of the people that I race with have the new plastic one. The wood board is about 4 inches shorter than the plastic one, which is roughly equivalent to raising the plastic board by 4 inches. I find that I slip sideways far more than they do, and they can point about 5-10 degrees higher than I can.
At the risk of over killing this subject, attached is a picture of my Fish. The red line at the front goes thru the hole ( or handle in this case) in the board as a continuous loop going around each side of the mast and thru the vee where the two spars meet at the tack. This does three things, puts pressure on the board to keep it down, to keep it up, and to pull the tack down and raise the outboard end of the sail when sailing downwind in light air, while you are heeling the boat to windward, thus exposing the sail to more air higher off the water.
Maybe a hack, but I've been using an adjustable bungie cord simply hooked to the bow handle and the other hook around the back top edge of the dagger board. It is doing a great job... simple and quick... the only thing that worries me is that it could make my sunfish a giant rubberband gun and launch the bungie off the bow. It's available at home depot under the brand name : JOUBERT 6 in. - 48 in. Adjustable Bungee Cords 2 Pack
We used a bungee on the daggerboards in our lessons. The one board that didn't have one pops up, but the brass on it was also curling up, so I figured that's why it wouldn't stay down/go down. The board jammed last night and it took some careful beaching and tool fiddling to get it out. Torqued the metal straight, tightened the screw, but the metal is very fatigued, so I think it's only a matter of time before the problem rises again. Hoping all the wiggling didn't damage anything side the boat.