You need to think about, and describe, your future sailing plans.
It looks to me that a Big Fish would be nice to cruise around in, especially with another person on board. But if you wanted to race at some point, a Sunfish would be a much better choice.
A Sunfish is also likely to hold its value better over time.
I think I may want to race so that is a big factor. But- I found a Big Fish demo for $3495 (list is around $5,000) and it would hold the wife and kid. I also heard somewhere that the build quality on the Big fish (made by Island Packet) is better than the Sunfish. I was wondering if the newer Laser Performance built Sunfish boats are better than the previous models or is this a factor that I should not worry about?
Yes, I own a BigFish. Go to their website and check out the video, it is a great boat. I bought it as an instructor boat. I teach sailing and have a fleet of 6 Sunfish. With the Bigfish, I can comfortably sit in boat and be completely out of the way of the student. It handles just like a Sunfish. I let the student do everything until they master, tacking, jibbing and all points of sail. Then back to the beach and let them jump in a Sunfish and away they go.
In light air it is about the same speed as a Sunfish but when the breeze fills in these things get up and go. They are 16 feet in length and quite a bit heavier but have plenty of room for a family to enjoy.
Mine is a 2006 model and I bought it in 2007 from a boat rental outfit and got it for $2,500 in great condition.
Thanks! My new "demo" Big Fish was delivered yesterday from MN. It is a 2006 as well and I can't wait to get it out on the water! Does the boat rig the same way as the Sunfish? I haven't had time to take off the cover yet. I bought a new Big Fish cover for it as well- it seems like a really well made cover. Mine wasn't quite as cheap- I paid $3400.
Any tips? My drain scupper is cracked and the dealer told me to order a new one if I wanted and that they would pay for it.
The gooseneck is much closer to forward end of lower boom which places upper boom nearly parallel to the mast. Of course this gets the lower boom way above the cockpit. Hopefully my picture attached to this. I talked with Island Packet at length about this and they assured that it is best in this position. I have not rigged one of my Sunfish in this manner but I keep thinking about to see what difference it makes in the Sunfish.
Enjoy your boat it is a great family ride and a real hoot when running downwind in about 15 knots of wind. Just hang on and fly!