Sail/spar on which side of mast


Active Member
Since you're probably waiting for a reply.... The brochures have shown the sail and spars on the right or starboard side. However, I would guess the large majority of sailors do it the other way around, with it on the left or port side. If you deck fitting for your halyard coming off the main spar is on starboard, that would seem to indicate running the halyard down that side as well with the sail on the opposite.
Basically 100% of sail trim discussions talk about the port tack have the sail shape affected by the main mast, unlike the starboard tack. ...indicating the more common setup.
Why??.... I'm sure there are other reasons I'm not aware of or have forgotten if read.


Upside down?
Staff member
Almost all prefer the rig to be on the port side to allow the halyard to go straight down to the eye (or block on old boats) on the starboard side of the deck.

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
The beloved current manufacturer of Sunfish (or more accurately the current occasional manufacturer of Sunfish) did a recent video and photo shoot of the sunfish with the sail on the wrong (starboard) side of the mast. Despite thei cluelessness, it goes in the port side.