'67 Sunfish

Thread starter #1
For no good reason, I picked up an old Sunfish last week. From what I've learned here about the Serial #, it's a 1967 vintage. It's a little worn, but it looks in original trim and I'd like to keep it that way. However, it has a cleat in the cockpit instead of the ratcheting halyard block that I see later models. Were there models in '67 with the halyard blocks standard?
 

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
#2
That is a ratcheting sheet block you are thinking of, not a halyard block (although your boat should have a halyard block by the mast. )

Sheet blocks weren’t standard til maybe 20 years ago. Before that they were a user-installed item.
 
Thread starter #5
It's not a looker just yet, still has duct tape patches on the sail, blue primer paint on the the hull, a soft spot my local fiberglass guy needs to attend to, etc. The rudder and dagger board don't look bad but I probably ought to refinish those too. It's a winter project.

IMG_20181129_173549760(1).jpg
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#6
Pretty boat! A few tips, tape down that rudder hardware if you are moving her long distances, things can vibrate loose. Don't leave the rudder pin with the hull, attach it to the rudder.

Check out our video on the vintage rudder hardware. If you don't have the plastic tube for the carriage bolt, you probably want to track one down, it helps prevent play in the carriage bolt alignment.


Looking forward to watching your project, thanks for posting the photo!

Cheers
Kent and Skipper
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
#7
That looks like a plastic or hard-rubber pallet that it's resting on. Great support for a "garage queen"! Are those blue thingies rollers?

It's not a looker just yet,
still has duct tape patches on the sail, blue primer paint on the the hull, a soft spot my local fiberglass guy needs to attend to, etc. The rudder and dagger board don't look bad but I probably ought to refinish those too. It's a winter project.
Other than the patches, the sail looks like it's definitely worth saving. While not an ideal place for a sail "window", maybe that would disguise (and strengthen) any rips, tears, or holes. Great shape for its age! :cool:

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Thread starter #8
It's a plastic pallet.

I'm still new at this hobby, but I would probably get my share of ridicule if I show up at a regatta with this old rag. But maybe it's not as bad as I think?

IMG_20181202_112843227.jpg IMG_20181202_113237761.jpg IMG_20181202_113704362.jpg
 
#9
Shameless Commerce Alert: I have several nice used sails for sale here on the Sunfish Forum for very decent prices Your duct taped sail is pretty well gone. Take a look at my ad and e-mail me if you are interested or have questions.

Alan Glos
Cazenovia NY
aglos@colgate.edu
 

mixmkr

Well-Known Member
#10
You could also get some adhesive backed sail cloth from Sailrite and cut out additional Sunfishes, to use as patches. Sunfish sails can usually be found on sale, this time of year too. Non regulation sails are actually fairly inexpensive, bought new.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
#11
It's a plastic pallet. I'm still new at this hobby, but I would probably get my share of ridicule if I show up at a regatta with this old rag. But maybe it's not as bad as I think?
OK, now viewing the other side, maybe I should re-think the suggestion of putting in a window? :confused:

OTOH, at the regatta, you won't get any ridicule—if you win! ;)

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signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#13
Yes it is as bad as you think. But don't ditch it, it looks original to the boat, period correct with the 2 stripes that match the deck stripes, and as you mentioned it would be fun to keep it in original trim for mess abouts. It would be fun to see if a sail loft could get the duct tape off, clean it and do a correct repair with adhesive backed sailcloth from Sailrite. In the meantime it will serve its intended purpose.

You should round up an S hook for the tack of the sail. While you're playing with sails and spars, you might want to add a newer outhaul cap to the tack end of the boom, with the tab pointing down. The plastic tab prevents the eyebolt from gouging the foredeck.

s hook.jpg

And post a picture of the cleat in the cockpit that you mentioned.

Cheers!
Kent and Skipper
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
#14
Yes it is as bad as you think. But don't ditch it, it looks original to the boat, period correct with the 2 stripes that match the deck stripes, and as you mentioned it would be fun to keep it in original trim for mess abouts. It would be fun to see if a sail loft could get the duct tape off, clean it and do a correct repair with adhesive backed sailcloth from Sailrite. In the meantime it will serve its intended purpose.
You should round up an S hook for the tack of the sail. While you're playing with sails and spars, you might want to add a newer outhaul cap to the tack end of the boom, with the tab pointing down. The plastic tab prevents the eyebolt from gouging the foredeck. And post a picture of the cleat in the cockpit that you mentioned.

Cheers!
Kent and Skipper
The S hook will prevent the pulling-out of grommets and tearing of the sail at the tack when raising it.

I wouldn't throw it out. Folks with youngsters starting-out in sailing would be happy to part with $50 for that sail. Advertise it here—link Sunfish For Sale

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Thread starter #15
Yes it is as bad as you think. But don't ditch it, it looks original to the boat, period correct with the 2 stripes that match the deck stripes, and as you mentioned it would be fun to keep it in original trim for mess abouts. It would be fun to see if a sail loft could get the duct tape off, clean it and do a correct repair with adhesive backed sailcloth from Sailrite. In the meantime it will serve its intended purpose.

You should round up an S hook for the tack of the sail. While you're playing with sails and spars, you might want to add a newer outhaul cap to the tack end of the boom, with the tab pointing down. The plastic tab prevents the eyebolt from gouging the foredeck.

View attachment 29316

And post a picture of the cleat in the cockpit that you mentioned.

Cheers!
Kent and Skipper
IMG_20181202_113017021.jpg
re: cockpit cleat
 
#16
that's definitely not standard - looks like the previous owner removed the standard hook and replaced it with a horn cleat. it will work - but I certainly would never want to cleat the mainsheet on something that tricky to remove if a gust of wind were to come up while you are sailing.

this is my basic setup (on a Minifish...) it's even easier to install on a Sunfish like yours with the cockpit lip/overhang.



this 2nd photo is my older Sunfish similar to yours - but before I had installed the stand-up spring (I would recommend installing the spring - it keeps the ratchet block from flopping around and scratching up the deck.

 

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
#17
I'd look for a replacement sail. This one is on eBay right now SUNFISH sail by North Sails, 2011 | eBay Great price for an "official" North sail. There are lots of Chinese made sails on eBay too, but I wouldn't take a chance on one. A good used North sail, or an unofficial one from Intensity are the best choices, IMHO. If you do plan to race at a regionals or above, you will need an official, class-legal sail. The racing sails are slightly fuller than the recreational sails, so the eBay sail I have linked too wouldn't be a good choice as it is the rec cut.
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#18
Thanks for the phot, very helpful! As Tag said, not original Alcort equipment. I'd suggest going back to the designed sheet hook as that cleat can snag a lot of undesirable things, consider adding a swivel cam cleat like most boats came through the 70s-80s-90s with or add the ratchet block like most racers use. Depends on what type of use you see the boat getting and how much you want to spend. Keeping in mind the boats were sailed for MANY years with just the little sheet hook. Here's Skipper having fun on 1965 Alcort WAVE, the cover shot on The Sunfish Owners Manual.

Wave Audrey hike out.jpg

We got bored and upgraded WAVE with a swivel cam cleat. Here is the link to the blog post on how we did it, with excellent advice from the usual visitors here.

swivel cam cleat WAVE.jpg

If your boat is a Winter Project, you might want to do an air leak test, see if there is leak repair in your future. This test is a demo, obviously there will be leaks from big coaming rivet holes and taped over inspection port holes. Most common leak areas are the mast step, daggerboard trunk, bailer seam, deck seam and sometimes the rudder assembly fasteners. Use low pressure, low volume air to avoid popping a seam or inflating the hull so much that an internal block pops loose.



FMI: Porter Cable Wet Dry Vac

Cheers,
Clark and Skipper
 
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Thread starter #21
that's definitely not standard - looks like the previous owner removed the standard hook and replaced it with a horn cleat. it will work - but I certainly would never want to cleat the mainsheet on something that tricky to remove if a gust of wind were to come up while you are sailing.

this is my basic setup (on a Minifish...) it's even easier to install on a Sunfish like yours with the cockpit lip/overhang.



this 2nd photo is my older Sunfish similar to yours - but before I had installed the stand-up spring (I would recommend installing the spring - it keeps the ratchet block from flopping around and scratching up the deck.

Apparently the little (as yet unnamed) 50 year old Sunfish has a double-sided sheet hook (and not a cleat), maybe it's not as genuine as I'd hoped.
I'll check into some of the used sails mentioned in the posts, I'm not looking to win any races, just puttering around the lake with the grandkids aboard is all. Doubtful I'll be showing off my sailing skills, since I have none, but at least they'll have a chance to learn some of their own. Hopefully without crashing grandpa's little sailboat.
 
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signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#22
She looks pretty stock too me, one of the most stock I've seen, especially given she is almost 52. Who knows, maybe Alcort tried something different that year with the cleat, just like they started adding stripes. Your year was the first to have stripes, after 7 years of no stripes. Another good thing about those years is the hulls are almost bomb proof, nice woven roving construction, a few pounds more than the current boats but perfect for a Grandkid trainer and easy to repair.

There are some pros to that cleat, it is easy to throw a lazy hitch around that when on a long tack, then switch to the other side when on the other tack. What waters will she sail?

Cheers
Kent and Skipper
 
#23
Other than the sail and that cleat (and both are easily replaced) it looks like you’ve got a great boat. That meat hook has got to go, though! It looks way too big for an already small cockpit. I’d replace it with the original hook- as Signal Charlie said, it has worked for all these years. They come up on eBay once in a while, or maybe someone here has one for sale (or post here under ‘Wanted’.
I hope the grandkids bang it up a little- that means they’re learning and having fun. If it doesn’t get a scratch it’s probably sitting in the yard. You can always come back to the forum with your fiberglass repair questions :)
Good for you for introducing the next generation to the fun of sailing!
 

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mixmkr

Well-Known Member
#24
I actually really like the old hook...and my knees are just fine..thank you!
I have a ratchet and cam cleats in addition, but the "hook" can rest some fatigued grips on occasion.
 

norcalsail

Active Member
#27
We have the hook on the old Sunfish and I like it quite a bit. You can pull the mainsheet under it and slid your hand up to grab a higher part of the line. I'm still getting used to my block.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
#28
I just checked each page of kjwalker2's 58-mile adventure, where the stock Sunfish hook would be severely tested. :oops: Wondering how his grip held up, if a ratchet block was installed, and what size mainsheet was in use?

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Thread starter #29
'67 Sunfish project:
-replace the old duct taped sail with a fresh new one from Intensity, check
-replace the cockpit cleat with a Harken swivel cam cleat, check
-buy a new spar bag to protect the new sail, check
-put the old boat in the water and test for leaks, check
-rig the sail and go for the maiden voyage in a light breeze, check
-take the boat out later when the wind has picked up considerably, check
-learn how upright a capsized Sunfish, check, check, and check
-tow the sailboat back to the ramp and call it a day, check.
 
Thread starter #33
Sounds like a full day.
Sea Trials complete!
Did a name surface? With all those capsizes whe might be NEMO, Master of the Deep.[/QUOT
Something bent or floated off.

We should have said something about capsize recovery. :(
No damage to the boat, just a severely bruised pride. Uprighting wasn't that difficult, getting back aboard took more athleticism than I've had for a very long time. After the third splash, I was done. My problems started when I dropped the tiller just as I was rounding the point coming out of a cove and the gust hit me broadside with the sail pulled in tight. Had I just let go of the sheet and let the sail out I might have saved it, but no, the fancy cam cleat held the line tight and over we went.
 
Thread starter #35
I didn't get very far with the restoration project last winter, still have the old mailbox numbers on the side, dull gel coat, and faded stripes. Here she rests comfortably under the mothership before the big launch later in the day. Maybe if I can figure out how to sail it without ending up looking like a turtle I'll spend a little more time with it in the shop this winter. FYI, those pool noodle floats strapped to the ends of the spars don't really work very well, they only delay the inevitable.

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