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Progress on my restoration project.

oregongirl

New Member
A new skill learned today - wet sanding! Time consuming but amazing results. The blue deck is slowly emerging in all its glory. Got the sail removed and soaking. Tested the mast step and it’s NOT leaking . I’m afraid to do the air leak test because I don’t want to mess anything up and I’m a little afraid of finding a leak.......if I’m being honest.
 

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Cactus Cowboy

Well-Known Member
Wow... that blue color is pretty once it's cleaned up, never thought it would look THAT good! Are you gonna use polish as well, for added protection? I'm curious what diehard Sunfish sailors would recommend... :confused:

Edit: You have a real gem of a boat there, she's gonna look like a million bucks once you're done with her... :cool:
 

oregongirl

New Member
Looks great! If the boat isn’t overweight don’t worry about the leak test. Tiny touch ups are all you need. Your boat is a beauty! Get a new bailer ball at intensitysails.com.
I like that answer. I haven’t weighed it but I can easily lift it so I really don’t think there is an issue. However, it also hasn’t been in the water in quite awhile.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
In Defense of Old Sails:

I've had quite a few sails among my present five (formerly six :confused: ) Sunfish. There are "crinkly" sails and "soft" sails. When you buy a new sail, you get a "crinkly" sail. Old sails are mostly "soft".

A new sail is definitely faster, but if you're not racing anyone, why spend the money? Yes, there is a speed/ safety factor in getting home sooner should the weather change. (So "safety" is a consideration in the size of the selection of bay or pond).

Keep in mind that--in extremis--the sail can be dropped, and you can still sail home using a "bare pole".

(A catamaran, caught in a desert storm while transiting the Suez Canal a decade ago, registered 24 MPH with her sails furled!) :eek:

Soft sails secure more readily, because they are easy to "flake" (making multiple folds--weighted by the spars) between sailing sessions.

Crinkly sails in temporary storage-mode tend to unwind dramatically when the wind grabs them.

Temporary storage with crinkly sails means pulling the sail out in the middle, and rolling it up. Still, it tends to get beaten up in strong winds, making multiple creases inevitable. :oops:

My latest "kluge" for either sail was to take an old hammock, tie the sides to pieces of PVC, and drop the netting over the sail. (Then the wind can't "catch" it).

This brings up another point with crinkly sails. They're usually colorful--which is fine, of course--but they will fade; :( oftentimes, in shades of dark and light in the same panel. :confused:

Soft sails are usually white sails--which are immune to fading. Sure, they'll get a rip or "munch" now and then, but repairs can be made invisible. Repairs are not so easy with colored panels, although kite repair kits are offered in a wide range of colors.

Rips by the gooseneck are a common event in old sails, but if repairs are undertaken with large sail-tape repairs, they'll be highly resistant to future damage.

After writing all that, be sure to support the advertisers here! ;)
 

Breeze Bender

Breeze Bender
I like that answer. I haven’t weighed it but I can easily lift it so I really don’t think there is an issue. However, it also hasn’t been in the water in quite awhile.
After sailing, listen for water in the hull. If you hear/feel the weight of water just drain it from the deck drain. It doesn’t absorb into the flotation unless left there over an extended period. Then you can do a safe leak test, if needed.
You’ve inspired me to get started with the wet sanding of my chalky old blue deck! It is time consuming, but rewarding, as your work confirms.
Here are a couple of patches I’ve just done to save an old ‘soft’ sail. I have no sewing machine.
 

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