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Summer Sailing

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Hola, what are your plans for the Summer Season? Please post your Float Test and Sea Trial photos, or current Boat Shop ponderings. Doesn't have to be a Sunfish although we all know that is Skipper's favorite (shhh, don't tell the other boats).

We are working on our Nutshell Pram EXCUSE ME's sail rig, the Sailrite lug sail kit is sewn and it has a wonderful shape. We took it to the beach a few days ago to see how it set on the spars and to do shadow puppetry. It looks great but it didn't go to windward well on the beach. But it was a nice day and Skipper mentioned later that she may have been able to sail a Sunfish on this light wind day. FYI she had a scary spine injury back in March, and is recovered enough now to threaten Sunfishery, I was very happy to hear that.

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The yard and boom are cut and shaped, and we glued up the mast with TotalBoat THIXO Flex. It is ready for shaping.

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We want to try the "Sunfish on a Dolly on a Trailer" method of transport, so in haste we bought a Harbor Freight Folding Trailer. Imagine my surprise when I actually read the Operation Safety section of the Owner's Manual and Safety Information and found this little gem... "Drive at moderate speeds. This will place less strain on your tow vehicle and trailer. Trailer instability (sway) is more likely to occur as speed increases. Do not exceed 45 miles per hour when towing the Trailer." Meanwhile the 12 inch tires are rated for 87 mph. That kind of took the wind out of my sails, what good is a 45 mph trailer? I think a phone call to Haul Master is in order. Does anyone have one of these and if so, what is your experience?

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We do have a few local ramps that we could get to without exceeding 45 mph. And some of the problem could be towing an empty trailer. But Skipper came up with a better plan, use this trailer for the Catfish, and use the REALLY nice Eddie English trailer for the boat/dolly/trailer package.

Lastly, who got out for a Summer Sailstice sail? We did, buried the lee rail.

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Have a great Summer!
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
So we had to call it. Time of death, 12:34. I was thinking "this hinge isn't very robust, then I got to the next step in the instructions where it says to bolt the two frame halves together. I did and there was still some flex between the frame halves. Then I thought, if it's bolted, how do you fold it? So I flipped to the back where the folding instructions are, and the procedure is to remove those two bolts, and also to remove 4 bolts from the leaf spring brackets. I chuckled a little, I have been snookered. In my book I call that disassembly. The tipping point was when I saw that the nylock nuts were already looking chalky. In Haul Masters defense the instructions also mention storing the trailer in a dry location to inhibit rust...does it need a night night blankie and bed time story too? Final straw, the holes on the leaf spring brackets didn't line up with the frame. I looked and looked to see if I put the side rails on in the wrong spot our upside down, but none of the hole combos made sense. At this point I wondered if I could just use it for a yard trailer, but decided that I'll haul it to the dump now before it gets any heavier and won't fit in the metal recycle bin. And I'll send Harbor Freight my notes, maybe they'll refund some money. It's not worth my time to take it apart and haul it back to the store, luckily I got it with my member discount for $300. I'll keep the tires, they are good Carlisles, maybe the axle and springs, that will offset my loss a little.

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L&VW

Well-Known Member
I bought mine already assembled--off the display floor, but it doesn't fold. (At least, it hasn't!)

The 45-MPH speed limit warning should have been a clue.

By email, show Harbor Freight these notes. This is the "Age of the Internet". :cool:
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
OTOH we bought the Harbor "Freight Small Boat Trailer" back when they sold those and it was a good little trailer for the price, perfect for Sunfish trips around town. It only had 8 inch wheels though, and we don't play that game any more on today's highways. We sold it with a boat so I never had a chance to see if a 12 inch wheel would fit.

Bunted the Casa today. 'Merica!

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Quartararo

New Member
I have had a Harbor Freight Folding Trailer for years. I have towed my sailfish all over the east coast. I usually try to keep my speed under 70 mph but have definitely done 75 for extended periods. The key is just never read the warnings.
And my trainer has the 8 inch tires. Not the 12 inch.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
I just finished refitting the trailer for a Sunfish. The Sailfish sat very nicely on a pair of 2x4s but the Sunfish has a much deeper V. Here is what I came up with.
Each bunk has a single bolt. Is that designed so each bunk can automatically adjust to the hull?
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Quartararo, how has the stainless hardware held up? The hardware that came with our trailer started to corrode significantly within a week of being outdoors, rained on once. I'm wondering whether this is "pandemic stainless?"

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Also the bolt holes did not line up where the leaf spring attaches the front frame to the aft frame.

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gzblack2

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication
My plans for the summer included overnighting on our Oday mariner with the littles on the Great South Bay, and taking part in the 51st annual sunfish race around Shelter Island.
Sadly none of this will happen due to slicing the EHL tendon in my foot right requiring surgery and 3 month recovery.
So I ask you all, please post as many photos as possible so I can sail vicariously through this forum.E05D63A2-E00E-45F4-B74F-3BBC45820667.jpeg
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
gzblack, ouch! Get well soon! Skipper should post a photo of her back brace. But not only can you sail vicariously you could throw out challenges to The Usual Visitors here. Skipper's goal is to be fully recovered by the next Summer Sailstice and take out our Catfish SMEDLEY. We did one year and it would be a good Annual event, SMEDLEY Sailstice. My goal would be to patch the two roller size holes in SMEDLEY's hulls :/

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megigharbor

New Member
I had one of those trailers 10 or more years ago and everything lined up and worked properly and didn't fail at 65mph. I replaced the hinge with a 1/8" thick, 3'long steel angle so the trailer didn't fold and added a 1/2" plywood base which stiffened it up nicely. I also added a 2" square tongue that tied the first two cross bars together, and moved the axle back to a more reasonable position. Took a little work to make a good trailer, but you can't beat the price (which was then $199!)
 

Breeze Bender

Breeze Bender
My plans for the summer included overnighting on our Oday mariner with the littles on the Great South Bay, and taking part in the 51st annual sunfish race around Shelter Island.
Sadly none of this will happen due to slicing the EHL tendon in my foot right requiring surgery and 3 month recovery.
So I ask you all, please post as many photos as possible so I can sail vicariously through this forum.View attachment 51979
I’m right there with ya, gzblack2, though your injury sounds worse!
I’ve had surgery for a torn meniscus. Hope to be sailing before the end of summer :(
 

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Dickhogg

Active Member
I’m right there with ya, gzblack2, though your injury sounds worse!
I’ve had surgery for a torn meniscus. Hope to be sailing before the end of summer :(
You guys both have my sympathy. I broke my ankle around this time last year and didn't sail again until May.

So far this summer I'm sailing every week. Mostly in the evenings after work. I even got to do a proper night sail at the last full moon.

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Wavedancer

Upside down?
Staff member
Very Nice!
Four Lasers (I think) and your Sunfish to spread the word in the UK.

PS: The Sunfish Worlds will be on Lake Garda this year, but no participants from GB as far as I can tell. You could set a precedent!
 

norcalsail

Well-Known Member
I am in Land O Lakes, Wisconsin, where I get to sail my Oldfish. Got a new rudder and daggerboard and it is sailing great! I found out about a Sunfish regatta/race in Eagle River just about 17 miles south of here and planned on trying to get the Oldfish down there. Not having a trailer or dolly, I asked my next door neighbor, who also has a Sunfish, if he would help me and if he wanted to go. Well, he informed me that there was a mixed regatta on our lake on the same day. So, we are going to sail our Sunfishes together in this Big Portage Lake race. That should be one of the highlights of my summer. I drove out here this year from Santa Rosa, CA where I like to sail on Tomales Bay. (None of this is new to many on the Forum, but I thought I'd add it into this message). I don't have any new photos but will post a repeat of the Oldfish on the Lake from two years ago. Updates will follow!
 

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signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Norcalsail, as you found out, a Barrington or newer daggerboard makes a difference on those 1953-early 80s boats, especially those that had a Shadow board. We use a spoon tip on the Sailfish fleet and a Barrington on Skipper's 1965 WAVE and our 1953 Alcort ZIP.

PS Beautiful spot you have. We need to find one of those boat houses in VA/NC.
 
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gzblack2

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication
I am in Land O Lakes, Wisconsin, where I get to sail my Oldfish. Got a new rudder and daggerboard and it is sailing great! I found out about a Sunfish regatta/race in Eagle River just about 17 miles south of here and planned on trying to get the Oldfish down there. Not having a trailer or dolly, I asked my next door neighbor, who also has a Sunfish, if he would help me and if he wanted to go. Well, he informed me that there was a mixed regatta on our lake on the same day. So, we are going to sail our Sunfishes together in this Big Portage Lake race. That should be one of the highlights of my summer. I drove out here this year from Santa Rosa, CA where I like to sail on Tomales Bay. (None of this is new to many on the Forum, but I thought I'd add it into this message). I don't have any new photos but will post a repeat of the Oldfish on the Lake from two years ago. Updates will follow!
I’m a fan of the red and white sails, but gotta say I maybe a bigger fan of the boat house.
 

gzblack2

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication
Norcalsail, as you found out, a Barrington or newer daggerboard makes a difference on those 1953-early 80s boats, especially those that had a Shadow board. We use a spoon tip on the Sailfish fleet and a Barrington on Skipper's 1965 WAVE and our 1953 Alcort ZIP.

PS Beautiful spot you have. We need to find one of those boat houses in VA/NC.
Speaking of daggerboards, I used some of the proceeds from my latest parts liquidation for these…0B8335D9-9203-4002-96D7-E4A7E8118154.jpeg312C7272-1931-4CA5-A236-2CE8A52AC960.jpeg7F46FA76-5387-4DDF-85DB-57C928700C50.jpeg
The build should be ready before I am.
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Wow that's fantastic! parts liquidation, hmmmm...

In other new we washed the 1982 AMF ALCORT PHOENIX, she got picked because she was easiest to roll out. And she's 4th of July coclors. Also needed to make repairs to her cover from hurricane damage. We might take her on a test ride this weekend to regain our trailer sailer currency and proficiency.

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gzblack2

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication
Well yes extra parts and a couple boats,
As for the daggerboard, it is the intensity board and I ordered the rubber stop separately. In the previous post it is just sitting in the hole to keep the parts together.
Any insight on how to install the stop?
I have a few ideas, I’m just surprised it wasn’t just plug and play. Unless I’m missing something obvious.
 

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norcalsail

Well-Known Member
Norcalsail, as you found out, a Barrington or newer daggerboard makes a difference on those 1953-early 80s boats, especially those that had a Shadow board. We use a spoon tip on the Sailfish fleet and a Barrington on Skipper's 1965 WAVE and our 1953 Alcort ZIP.

PS Beautiful spot you have. We need to find one of those boat houses in VA/NC.
We sleep in the upper part of the boathouse at night and leave the main house up the hill empty. Sometimes my wife needs to do a midnight run to the bathroom and I walk up with her. There are bears and wolves around here and a bit spooky at night! I just use the outhouse though.

I know I sent some photos of my new daggerboard and rudder. I think think it is a Barrington as you said and it did make a big difference.

So, I have to come to the library in town to post and take care of internet business which is where I am right now and was yesterday when I posted above.
Ran into my next door neighbor, Rick at the market and he reminded me that he was going to sail. The wind was really blowing...a lot! Didn't really want to go out, thinking it was too much but he took off and I just had to follow. If not there, where and I figured it was good practice. Not fun. Heavy wind, blustery, shifty and it wanted to throw me backwards over the windward side. We both turtled and I limped home. Good experience but looking forward to lighter wind today. A few evenings ago, it was really steady, strong, consistent and fun. I was able to reach along the north shore back and forth in front of the house. Getting the Cyclone 13 out today and sailing the Sunfish for sure. Gotta get going!
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
We like the long side backwards, our thinking is that if we hit an obstacle or run up on the beach, the rounded edge has a better chance of pushing the board up vs a sudden stop and possible trunk damage. And my airplane pilot brain thinks that with the "wingtip" swept out and aft, the flow of water that tries to escape over the blade tip (and create turbulent flow) has a better chance of staying laminar and flowing over the trailing edge.

I don't think there is consensus, even from the manufacturer. You'll find the board both ways.

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One thing we learned is that longer daggerboards are more entertaining to put in and remove at the beach. You'll need a longer bungee if that is your jam. Some folks leave the board in the slot at the beach when launching or coming in, but if that boom swings across in a breeze and catches the top of the daggerboard, you are ripe for a capsize right in front of the crowd.

And as I thought, that newest board is close to 44 inches, 5 inches longer than the Barrington. When will the madness end! Will there be a high aspect ratio glider wing board (low drag) next?
 

norcalsail

Well-Known Member
I learned about the boom hitting the long daggerboard the hard way. My neighbor Rick and I took our Sunfish out to the start of the race. Only two others showed up. Both were displacement hulls with jibs. Throughout the race, I was in all places. At one point, I thought I had it nailed as I closed in on the last mark. Rick picked up wind and blew by me and Lee, in a displacement hull, just beat me to the mark. He rounded it and I was right behind. He snagged the mark with his keel and had to pull it up so I passed him , gained a good lead and came in second. I am wondering what the Portsmouth numbers are for those bigger boats.
 
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